Whether you’re at Walt Disney World, Disneyland, Disneyland Paris or even on a Disney Cruise, the one thing you’re very likely to experience is hot weather this summer. The heat of the midday sun can be unbearable, especially when you’re walking around the parks. But there are steps you can take to make your trip more comfortable.
The number one tip has to be keep hydrated! Dehydration can increase feelings of tiredness and irritability and ultimately lead to hospitalization in serious cases. Keep fluid levels up all day along, and encourage children and babies to drink as much as possible. Cold water and fruit juice are the best things to drink. Try to avoid sodas and fizzy drinks as they won’t keep you hydrated. I know someone who visited California in summer and drank nothing but soda. He ended up in hospital with severe dehydration. Water in the parks can be expensive, so if you’re able go to a supermarket when you arrive and purchase the multipacks of bottled water which are much cheaper. For a nice refreshing drink, freeze bottles overnight and take them with you to the parks, by which time they will have started melting and you’ll have iced water to drink. There are water fountains all over the parks where you can get a drink or refill bottles. Counter service places will all provide a free cup of iced water on request. Alcohol is best avoided as it can increase the risk of dehydration. Remember that by the time you feel thirsty you’re already starting to dehydrate.
Fruit and salads are good choices at meal or snack times for their water content, and are nicer to eat than hot foods on a hot day.
Ice creams and cold slushy drinks are a great way to cool down, so use the hot weather as a good excuse to indulge in a Mickey bar or Dole Whip (as if you need an excuse!)
Wear a hat and loose fitting clothing. Light colored clothing is best as it reflects heat. Young children and babies should always wear hats and be kept out of the sun as much as possible. Use a parasol or sun shade on strollers when in the sun. Sunglasses are always important, even for children whose eyes are especially prone to sun damage. You can even buy special wrap around sunglasses for babies.
Keep applying the sunscreen when outdoors, using as high a factor as possible. Children should use nothing lower than factor 30, with factor 50+ being preferable in high summer. It’s especially important to reapply after swimming, when even waterproof sunscreen gets partly washed off. UV rays can penetrate cloud, so it’s important to keep applying the sunscreen even on overcast days.
Plan your day accordingly. If it’s forecast to be very hot try to arrive at the parks as early as possible and do as many outdoor rides as possible. When the sun gets hottest from 11am to 3pm aim to do inside rides and shows which will be air-conditioned.
If you’re sitting waiting for a parade, try to pick a spot in the shade.
If you don’t want to skip the outdoor rides, opt for the water rides such as Splash Mountain and Kali River Rapids. Kids can have fun splashing about in the play water fountains. And try to avoid attractions which have queue areas in the sun.
Take an afternoon break and go back to your hotel for a dip in the pool!
Buy a fan or Squeeze Breeze water misting fan. They are available throughout the parks, but are cheaper to buy offsite. Splashing your face and neck with cold water several times a day will help to keep you cool.
Signs of heat exhaustion include headaches, dizziness, nausea and vomiting, muscle weakness or cramps, pale skin, and a fever.If you have any of those symptoms, head straight for the first aid center in the park, or consult a doctor if you’re not in a park.
Heatstroke can develop if heat exhaustion is left untreated, but it can also occur suddenly and without warning. Symptoms include nausea, an intense thirst, sleepiness, hot, red and dry skin, confusion, aggression, convulsions and loss of consciousness. If you think someone has heatstroke get them straight to the nearest hospital or call for an ambulance as it can be very serious if untreated.