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Old 12-17-2012, 11:53 PM   #46
StyledSugar
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Thanks everyone for the responses. We have decided (with the assistance of cell phones lol) we are going to let them go off on their own for an hour or two at a time. We'll see how that goes. They are pretty responsible kids and stick together like glue so I'm not worried about that. I'll report back to let everyone know how it goes. Like others in this thread said, if I let them wander the Stampede grounds by themselves then there is no reason not to let them have a little freedom at Disneyland.
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Old 12-17-2012, 11:59 PM   #47
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When I was younger, I remember we went as a group with the entire extended family. A few of us younger (but not the youngest who was about 7) ventured off on our own. We were given a place to meet and showed up on time.

I remember we must have gone on POTC about four or five times in a row since there was virtually no line. It was raining that day, and the crowds were sparse. This was before cell phones. Somehow it all worked.

However, I'm not sure how it would work with big crowds. We were able to keep each other in sight with a small group. I remember being in a larger group for our Grad Night trip, and we ended up splitting into smaller groups simply because we got lost.
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Old 12-22-2012, 12:38 PM   #48
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Yup another person who was allowed as a child to wander at will with my older brother way before cell phones.
I let my DD wander at about 11, with commonsense guidelines.
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Old 12-22-2012, 02:12 PM   #49
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When I was 12, my parents would allow me and my 10 and 8 year old brothers go off on our own as a group, although we usually had a walkie talkie (this was right before cell phones became ubiquitous among kids). I had experience babysitting them, which helped as well.

A year later, I went to Disneyland with my school's choir, and my friends and I went around the park without chaperones - just a specific time and place we were supposed to meet up with the rest of the group.

At that age, I loved that I was able to have the independence to go around the parks without adults, and so was happy to respect meet-up times.
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Old 12-22-2012, 05:39 PM   #50
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My girls will be 12 & 13 when we go to DL and I have told them that I want them to go and have some time together alone. We will have rules about no park hopping, a lunch budget, etc. We will also have some family time and some time where each of them get alone time with mom or with dad. I agree that vacation is family time, but we also do lots of activities together at home. I think it is important to give them some freedom so that they can learn how to interact without their parents around to help them. Recently, they told me that they could go to WDW on their own! They proceeded to tell me in great detail how they would go to the correct gate at our airport, where they would catch magical express, how they would find their room, etc. I told them there was just one little problem with that...they aren't old enough to check into the hotel!
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Old 12-22-2012, 10:00 PM   #51
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FreeTime View Post
My girls will be 12 & 13 when we go to DL and I have told them that I want them to go and have some time together alone. We will have rules about no park hopping, a lunch budget, etc. We will also have some family time and some time where each of them get alone time with mom or with dad. I agree that vacation is family time, but we also do lots of activities together at home. I think it is important to give them some freedom so that they can learn how to interact without their parents around to help them. Recently, they told me that they could go to WDW on their own! They proceeded to tell me in great detail how they would go to the correct gate at our airport, where they would catch magical express, how they would find their room, etc. I told them there was just one little problem with that...they aren't old enough to check into the hotel!
Had a rough day today thanks for the laugh
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Old 12-23-2012, 01:43 AM   #52
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FreeTime View Post
My girls will be 12 & 13 when we go to DL and I have told them that I want them to go and have some time together alone. We will have rules about no park hopping, a lunch budget, etc. We will also have some family time and some time where each of them get alone time with mom or with dad. I agree that vacation is family time, but we also do lots of activities together at home. I think it is important to give them some freedom so that they can learn how to interact without their parents around to help them. Recently, they told me that they could go to WDW on their own! They proceeded to tell me in great detail how they would go to the correct gate at our airport, where they would catch magical express, how they would find their room, etc. I told them there was just one little problem with that...they aren't old enough to check into the hotel!
LOL!! Kids tend to forget that while they believe they are old enough to do everything without parents (or at least my 14 year old does lol), there is a little thing about having the means to do all of those things. Plus I'm sure there would be questions about 12 or 13 year olds trying to check into a hotel alone. lol Too cute!
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Old 12-23-2012, 03:21 AM   #53
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My older kids will be 12 and 14 if we are able to go again next year and I was thinking of letting them loose by themselves for a few hours, while we take the younger ones on the little rides. I think 14 is old enough for a few hours at disneyland. My dh is a lot more protective than me so I don't know if he'll allow this though lol
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Old 12-23-2012, 06:27 PM   #54
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Count me out! I won't/wouldn't let my kids roam alone. Tooooo many unknowns and situations that could arise that I don't think "kids" are mature enough to handle even when rehearsed over and over. I work in a school and work with kids all day long as well as being a parent, I have had many encounters with kids and feel confident with the opinion that I hold on this. I live in Alberta and under NO uncertain terms would I allow my kids to go to the Stampede/Capital Ex alone EVER! I truly believe that people living in Canada and those who go to Disneyland and other happy places have a false sense of security. And again, IMO, a family vacation means just that...
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Old 12-23-2012, 08:08 PM   #55
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You know your kids better than we do but I think it's reasonable.

Checking in every 30 mins seems a bit "tight" to me. We allow our kids of about the same age to do their own thing with these guidelines.

1) Don't leave the park
2) Set a time/place to check-in (usually 90-120 mins later)
3) They have a cellphone (with "find my iphone" feature) so that we can get in touch / track them
4) Remind them to deal with cast members if there's a problem
5) Yes, stay together
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