There are many options for parents who require strollers when coming to Walt Disney World. They can bring their stroller from home, rent one at the parks, or rent from an off site company. If they decide to rent off site, there are several companies to pick from, so which do they choose? Luckily, TouringPlans.com decided to rent strollers from four different companies and compare.
I was joined by Shelley Caran, a blogger at On The Go in MCO and icFlorida.com. We booked a room at All Star Sports (to have the strollers delivered to), grabbed our kids, my sons aged 3 and 18 months, and her 5 year old daughter, and ordered strollers from four different companies. I reserved all of our strollers the week before using the company’s websites. We rented from Kingdom Strollers, Magic Strollers, Orlando Stroller Rentals, and Baby Wheels Orlando. To keep things even, we ordered the same strollers (City Mini Single) and same accessories (a rain cover) from each company. When we checked in at noon, all of our strollers had arrived and we were ready to go!
Kingdom Strollers had a clean, easy to use website. They offered multiple types of strollers, and even rent full sized cribs. My biggest complaint with them was that they didn’t have very detailed instructions with the stroller. There were directions how to fold and open it, but that was all. If I had not had instructions provided by other companies, I would not have been able to figure out how to recline the seat. Another fairly superficial thing that I find important in a stroller, is a cup holder for me. When I am outside in the heat at Disney World, I almost always have a drink with me, and need a place to put it while I push. Kingdom Strollers was the only company to not provide a “parent console” that included a cup holder. Every other company offered it either by default, or upon request. Kingdom was the only company to send a follow up email. It just said thank you, and they hope to see us again, but it was a nice gesture. The stroller itself was in good condition, except that we did not receive our rain cover we requested.
I called Kingdom Strollers and spoke with Matt, who said that sometimes they run out of covers, so they just short people. I asked him do double check that I was one of the people who was shorted that day. I did not want it to have gotten lost in the luggage holding area, and then be charged for it. He said he did not have the list in front of him, but he would make a note of it. I asked for a return phone call, just to confirm, and he refused and said it was unnecessary since he already made a note and everything would be fine. I found it frustrating that they shorted us the rain cover, without any notice. If it had been rainy season, that would have been enough reason for me to use a different company.
Magic Strollers is the newest offering from Owner’s Locker. Their strollers come in a nice, black, carry bag; you have to attach the wheels yourself, which is not difficult, but a bit annoying. They sent us a text when our stroller was dropped off, which was reassuring. It was good to know our stroller was ready and waiting when we got to the resort. Magic was the most strict on drop off and pick up times. Strollers are dropped off at 10am and picked up at 2pm. If you need your stroller for earlier than 10, they recommend you have it dropped off the day before; if you need it later than 2, then they ask you to pay for an additional day. This stroller also came with few instructions, but did include a certificate from the company that cleaned and sanitized the stroller. This stroller was also in good condition, although the wheels could have used a bit of WD-40.
Orlando Stroller Rentals
Orlando Stroller Rentals is probably the most well known of the rental companies. However, it was one of the more expensive companies we rented from, and the only company that made us pay for a rain cover if we wanted one. Their website was easy to use, although they had fewer add-on options than the other companies. The stroller we received was mechanically in good condition, but the fabric was torn and worn out in several places, and had a couple of stains. On the day we returned the stroller, I got a phone call at 4:15pm, 15 minutes after the designated pick up time, and a very terse voice mail telling me my stroller should already have been returned to bell services. I called the company and informed them the stroller had been handed over to bell services at 10 that morning, and there seemed to be some mistake. About 40 minutes later, I received a call saying there had been a mistake. I understand mistakes happen, but the original voice mail was rude, and accusatory, which was uncalled for, especially since it was not my mistake.
Baby Wheels Orlando
If I ever need to rent a stroller in Orlando again, I would rent from Baby Wheels Orlando. They had, by far, the most detailed instructions, they were incredibly flexible with pick up and drop off times, and they had the best selections of add-ons, many for free. They were not the cheapest company, nor were they the most expensive. They sent a text the morning we checked in confirming our stroller was there, and were extremely helpful when I needed them.
Remember how Kingdom Strollers did not include my rain cover? Well, when you order identical strollers from four different companies, things can get confusing. I originally thought it was the Baby Wheels rain cover that had been forgotten. I called and spoke with Keith, who assured me cover had been delivered, told me exactly where it should be, and asked me to check again. I told him it was most definitely not there. Less than 15 minutes later, Keith called me from bell services at All Star Sports. He drove all the way there to talk with Bell Services and find out what was going on. We quickly figured out that it was my mistake, but I was impressed that Keith went out of his way to make sure that we all knew what had gone wrong. Also, he could not have been nicer about my mistake, even though it caused him to go out of his way.
Have you rented a stroller for a Disney World vacation? Who did you use? What did you think?