…if you just remember a few simple things.  Over the next several Saturdays, I’ll be sharing them here.  These are super simple ways to help your family members have a great moment–the kind you hoped for when you started planning.

Remember that every family member is different.

Start with this simple thought and you will enjoy your kids so much more–and they will have a great time, too.

One child may love the bigger and faster attractions while another really hates those attractions.  Before getting in a queue, take time to talk as a family about what you enjoy.  Any parent can sense when what a kid fears is simply what they don’t know (trust me, I was terrified of Pirates of the Caribbean because it had a scary entrance, but The Haunted Mansion was my favorite as a kid) or if it’s something more.

Our family has a rule that everyone has to try an attraction before they boycott it.  Usually the ones who were afraid realize it’s not actually what they were worried about and go again.  Sometimes they really just don’t like certain types, and you leave it alone and enjoy what they enjoy.

My wife hates spinning rides, so she sits those out.  The kids would love if she went, but they don’t pressure her.  My oldest son has finally conquered his fear of Twilight Zone Tower of Terror, but he doesn’t like the attraction.  Guess who gets to hang out with the kids who also don’t like it?  It’s not a punishment, we aren’t forcing anyone in the queue to experience a meltdown, and I’m still smiling.  That’s a win. 

Remember that every person in the family likes different things. Disneyland was created to make these differences something to enjoy.  With RiderSwitch passes, kid-friendly attractions next door to the more rambunctious ones, and literally hundreds of things to do, every family can create a great Disneyland memory, and avoid those pre-boarding power struggles.

Do your research before you go.  Even the most innocuous-looking facades can hold some pretty scary stuff inside.

I’m looking at you, Mr. Toad.