Stroller Rental - What? How?

Wednesday, January 8, 2014

When we first started planning this trip (the one in 15 days), a stroller rental was included from day one. At this point, we cannot consider traveling without it. My kids are old enough to get through an airport without a stroller. I'm not even sure if my three year old would sleep in one anymore. We will have enough on our hands getting the four of us through security and to the gate, let alone checking a stroller through to MCO. Having seen the stroller options first hand at the parks, combined with the fact that the most critical time to have a stroller is not inside, but rather outside the parks getting back and forth from the hotel, I always recommend people rent from an outside vendor for length of stay.

There are many options if you do some googling, but the one I can recommend from firsthand experience is Orlando Stroller Rentals. In the effort of being fair, touringplans did a review of some other area rental agencies and also a helpful FAQ. My daughter (who was four at the time of our trip in 2011) loved the stroller so much that she cried leaving it at Bell Services on our last morning. The thing she was going to miss most about her time with the mouse was not the castle, the mickey waffles, the parade, not even a Mickey Bar, but a rented stroller.

I had no experience renting a stroller at WDW prior to our trip in 2011. I chose based on online reviews and honestly, I hoped for the best. We were pleasantly surprised with how easy the process was from start to finish and it didn't hurt that the stroller we selected was the easiest to fold and operate that we have ever used. I'm sure the stroller was heavy with both kids riding along, but I wouldn't know because my husband was on stroller duty most of the time. Our experience was flawless and I highly recommended them to several friends since our trip who all had positive experiences. (Please note the sass of the girl below. At the gates to the Magic Kingdom, yet still unhappy.)
A friend recently returned from a trip in December 2013 with a young toddler. I asked her to share her feedback, which was glowing.

"We have no complaints!! Easy to reserve online, waiting for us at bell services upon arrival. Delivered to room by staff. Came with free rain cover and cooler as a gift. Stroller was in great shape and clean! Our name was tied to it in two places."

She further shared some helpful advice, "We should have gone with the city mini, but I booked the city elite. I thought it would give us even more storage and be even comfier for naps, but he never fell asleep in the stroller. The city mini would have been a little lighter and compact to manage on the bus/boats."

I dragged my feet on purpose for this trip to see if I would run into any snags booking within a few weeks of arrival. I had absolutely no issue booking a City Mini GT Double ($85.00, plus tax). I debated between this and the City Mini Double ($75.00, plus tax) to accommodate my daughter who I suspect might whine a bit about squeezing into a seat meant for someone two inches shorter. I'm not sure how much time she will even spend in the stroller, but for an extra ten dollars on the total, it seemed worth it to completely avoid any potential bellyaching (though referencing the photo above, not sure that will be possible).

Last time I had to pay for the rain cover, so I was pleasantly surprised to see it offered free this time around. Seeing these cold temps of late (even in FL!), I didn't hesitate. Anything to create a barrier to cold or wind, right? I'll review again after our trip to share an updated review of Orlando Stroller Rentals, but I am fully expecting another flawless experience.

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