Disney's Child/Rider Swap

Photos by Paul Hiffmeyer/Disneyland

Category: Travel

Disney Child Rider Swap mickey and minnie

As we all know, there are many rides and attractions at Disneyland and Walt Disney World Resorts that have a height requirement or are too intense for some riders. And many times the lines to get to the attractions are long and if you have a child that doesn’t meet the height requirement or doesn’t want to ride on the attraction, a family dilemma ensues. Who is going to stay with the child/children while the others stand in line and go on the ride? And then will that person miss out on the fun of the attraction just because she or he was staying with the child? The answer to this last question is No.


With the Child/Rider swap option, the entire group can stay together in the line and when they reach the attraction one rider in the group is given a “rider swap ticket” which allows another person to leave the line with the child. Then, when the others return from the ride, they hand the ticket to the person who was waiting with the child and that person now gets to walk to the front of the line and enjoy the ride while someone else looks after the child or the other non-rider.


Now, because you have a child that does not meet many height requirements, you don’t have to feel that only one of you will get to have a great time. And if you have a child that meets the height requirement and one that does not, that taller child is allowed to ride twice, once with each adult so the adult doesn’t have to ride alone.


How do you take advantage of this great opportunity? When you approach the line, simply tell the first attendant that you want to take advantage off the child swap. Then when your party gets to the actual loading of the ride, one adult stays behind with one child while the others in the group continue onto the ride. When they are finished they hand the passes to the waiting adult and he/she along with the older child (if there is one in the group) gets an immediate turn on the ride while the other adult stays behind with the smaller child. Make sure you ask about this option when entering attractions. Not every attraction offers this child swap opportunity, just the ones with height requirements. And, each attraction deals with the swapping differently, so get the information about where to wait and where to return when you enter the attraction.


Disney Child Rider Swap Disney World


Attractions at Disneyland Resort offering the Rider Swap:


  • Autopia
  • Big Thunder Mountain Railroad
  • Gadget’s Go Coaster
  • Indiana Jones Adventure
  • Matterhorn Bobsleds
  • Space Mountain
  • Splash Mountain
  • Star Tours: The Adventure Continues

Disney’s California Adventure

  • California Screamin’
  • Goofy’s Sky School
  • Grizzly River Run
  • Radiator Springs Racers
  • Silly Symphony Swings Single
  • Silly Symphony Swings Tandem
  • Soarin’ Over California
  • The Twilight Zone Tower of Terror
  • Tuck and Roll’s Drive ‘Em Buggies

Here is a list of attractions offering Rider Swap at Walt Disney World:

Magic Kingdom Park

  • Big Thunder Mountain Railroad
  • Splash Mountain
  • The Barnstormer
  • Space Mountain
  • Stitch’s Great Escape
  • Tomorrowland Indy Speedway


  • Future World
  • Mission: SPACE
  • Soarin’
  • Test Track

Disney’s Hollywood Studios

  • Rock ‘n’ Roller Coaster Starring Aerosmith
  • Star Tours® – The Adventures Continue
  • Twilight Zone Tower of Terror

Disney’s Animal Kingdom Park

  • Expedition Everest – Legend of the Forbidden Mountain®
  • Kali River Rapids
  • Primeval Whirl

With this special option (referred to as Rider Swap, Baby Swap, or Child Swap), staying behind with a child doesn’t have to mean you will miss out on all the fun. This is just another way Disney makes enjoying their parks with your entire family fun and friendly.


Armed with this information, a map of the theme parks, some good walking shoes, plenty of patience and a desire to have fun, you are now ready to tackle The Happiest Places on Earth! Enjoy!!!


About the Author

Francine Brokaw has been covering all aspects of the entertainment business for 20 years. She also writes about technology and has been a travel writer for the past 12 years. She has been published in national and international newspapers and magazines as well as internet websites. She has written her own book, Beyond the Red Carpet The World of Entertainment Journalists, from Sourced Media Books.

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