What NOT to bring to a theme park

in SeaWorld Orlando, Theme Parks, Universal Orlando, Walt Disney World

A magically fun day at Florida’s theme parks is always a welcome retreat.  A camera can capture memories and sunscreen saves skin from sunburns.  However there are some things that should not be part of the adventure.

SeaWorld Parks and Entertainment, Universal Studios Orlando and Walt Disney World resorts greatly value the safety of their guests and employees.  In order to help ensure that safety, several items are not allowed into their theme parks.

Common sense and safety should prevail when determining what to take with you into a theme park.  Firearms, weapons (and items that can be considered weapons), glass containers, masks, folding chairs, and large coolers are common to all three parks’ list of items not allowed.

Pets, aside from those designated as service animals are also barred from theme park entry.

Denied at Disney

Most rides will allow recording if the phone or camera is secure via a strap or other means of attachment.  Selfie sticks are banned.  If spotted with one, the guest is brought to a place to have the item held for them while visiting.

The Walt Disney Company has a very specific list of leave at home items that are not allowed access. According to their frequently asked question page, the following items prohibited:

  • Wagons
  • Skateboards
  • Scooters
  • Drones
  • Remote control toys
  • Inline skates
  • Shoes with built-in wheels
  • Strollers larger than 36″ x 52″ (92 x 132 cm)
  • Suitcases, coolers or backpacks with or without wheels larger than 24″ (61 cm) long x 15″ (38 cm) wide x 18″ (46 cm) high. Coolers required for medication may be stored in a locker or at Guest Relations.
  • Any trailer-like object that is pushed or towed by an ECV, wheelchair or stroller
  • Wheeled mobility devices with less than 3 wheels and devices that cannot maintain stability and balance when stopped, unpowered or unoccupied. Training wheels or similar modifications are not permitted.
  • Alcoholic beverages
  • Weapons of any kind or object that appear to be weapons (toy guns, toy blasters, squirt guns, etc.)
  • Folding chairs
  • Glass containers (excluding baby food jars and perfume bottles)
  • Pets (unless they are service animals, defined as any dog or miniature horse trained to do work or perform tasks for the benefit of an individual with a disability)
  • Balloons and straws are not permitted in Disney’s Animal Kingdom Park for the safety of our animals
  • Tripod stands or monopod stands that cannot fit inside a standard backpack
  • Wrapped gifts (all gifts must be able to be unwrapped for inspection)
  • Selfie sticks (hand-held extension poles for cameras and mobile devices)

In addition, the Disney parks also do not allow photography for professional purposes unless approved by Walt Disney World Resort Media Relations.

Unwelcomed at Universal

Cameras are not allowed at all on many rides.  Some rides have lockers to store them while enjoying the attraction.

Universal Orlando Resort details what is not permitted past their security check.  The “Conditions of Entry” page on their website advises that following things should not be taken into the theme parks:

  • Weapons or items that may be used as weapons
  • Alcohol
  • Marijuana
  • Illegal items or substances
  • Clothing with offensive language or content
  • Clothing that represents someone as emergency personnel
  • Clothing or accessories that may create a false impression that visitors work for Universal
  • Any other items Universal personnel deem to be inappropriate, disruptive or harmful
  • Glass containers
  • Open containers
  • Hard-sided coolers
  • Soft-sided coolers larger than 8.5″ wide x 6″ high x 6″ deep
  • Picnic lunches
  • Food that requires heating or refrigeration
  • Folding chairs

While outside food and drink is listed on the page, exceptions exist for dietary requirements, baby food, and medical requirements.  Munchies that don’t need to cooked and up to a couple liters of bottled water are also allowed.

Stopped at Sea World

A question about security on FAQ page of SeaWorld Parks and Entertainment website advises “The following items are not permitted to be brought into SeaWorld: weapons, glass bottles, cans, any other type of sharp object, straws, large hard or soft coolers, and any hazardous items or materials.”


Safety is the driving factor behind these restrictions at all three parks. Helping to ensure this safety standard, all parks require guests to pass through metal detectors prior to entry and that all bags receive a review by security.

Planning ahead and leaving these items behind at home, in your hotel room or the trunk of your car will help ensure the experience of all guests is an enjoyable one.

Source and images: SeaWorld Parks and Entertainment, Universal Orlando Resort, Walt Disney World Resort