Hotels & Water Parks

  • My recommendations for hotel pools and water parks are never very well received as they are perceived as being inconvenient. However, I stand by them. Keep your child safe.

  • Two main issues at both hotel pools and water parks are pool access and water chemistry.






Hotel pools can be fun, exciting, and great!
But consider these things before opening that gate.

Is there a lifeguard here?  Are your parents near?
Does the water look clear?  Where's the safety gear?

Check for rules and obey the sign.
Be a sport, smart, and patient, and you will be fine.

Hotel Tips

All of the previously stated tips for public pool safety and supervision apply to hotels and water parks. Layers of protection are especially important in the unguarded, easily accessed hotel pools.

I recommend that you never allow your children into hotel hot tubs or spas. Make it a hard and fast rule and don't relent. 

Spas and many baby pools are hard to keep sanitized because of the small amount of water and the high concentration of use. Spas have the added negative factor of the warm water, which is a good environment for some bacteria to grow.

Ideally, both spas and small baby pools should be dumped and refilled daily.  Some places do this, but many facilities do not.

Click to read the Parent's Guide to Hotel Swimming Pool Safety. It contains the Six No's and Six Know's of safety in and around hotel pools. Print it out and take it with you next time you take a trip. Print it on brightly colored paper and hang it on your hotel room door to remind yourself to stay on alert. There is a pool nearby.


Water Park Dangers

  • Many, many, many more swimmers.

  • More patrons are first time visitors.

  • More kinds of attractions and play structures.

  • Larger percentage of patrons are non-swimmers.

  • Zero-depth dangers(I've never understood why we think it's a good idea to put toddlers who can barely walk on a flat surface in a swimming pool with a sloped floor- makes no sense to me! It's just a little joke on the kids??)

  • Catch pools at the bottom of slides can be dangerous for even strong swimmers.

  • Increased risk of becoming over tired.

  • Increased risk of getting lost.

  • Increased risk of waterborne illnesses.

My recommendations:

  • Only skilled swimmers go to water parks. Non-swimmers should learn to swim in a facility appropriate for swimming lessons (flat bottom, not zero-depth slant, calm water, fewer distractions) before being allowed to go to a water park.

  • Constant supervision: You can't supervise from a lounge chair or from the lazy river.

  • Designated swim times and rest times.

  • Follow all rules and age-level/height guidelines.

  • Protect yourself from the sun and dehydration.

Water parks have been in the news lately. There have been some tragic injuries and even deaths. Please follow all rules and guidelines for attractions. Listed below are recommendations copied directly from the International Association of Amusement Parks and Attractions website.

Water park safety is a partnership between parents and parks. Parents should always directly supervise their children, especially if children are young or weak swimmers. Below are a few tips to keep in mind when visiting a water park.

- Children under 48", non-swimmers, and weak swimmers should wear a Coast Guard approved life vest while enjoying water park attractions. Bring your own if you are unsure of availability and fit.

- Dress appropriately, including a hat and loose shirt for when you’ve had enough sun. Monitor how much sun children, especially toddlers, are exposed to. Note: water shoes are often not permitted to be worn on water slides and attractions.

- Apply waterproof sunscreen before leaving home (reapply throughout the day) and drink plenty of fluids (avoid beverages with sweeteners or with caffeine).

- Children in diapers should be dressed in waterproof swim diapers to minimize leakage. Change diapers only in designated changing areas.

- Read the signs at every waterpark attraction and listen to all audio instructions provided by recordings or staff. Obey all rules and experience- level guidelines.

- Follow the lifeguards’ instructions and signal them if you see someone in trouble.

- Like visits to amusement parks and attractions designating a meeting place is always smart in the instance some one is separated from your party.  The buddy system is an excellent way to ensure no children are left alone.


For swimmers, a water park can't be beat,
a wonderful place to slide, dive, paddle, and eat!

There are wave pools and drop slides, swings, rafts, and rings
- all features not safe for one who still clings.

Save rides, rafts, and drops slides for when you float strong and steady.
These are good times for which a non-swimmer's not ready.

Don't use lifejackets so non-swimmers partake...
in something they can't do. Their lives are at stake!!!

But lifejackets are, in fact, excellent tools
to protect skilled swimmers in water park pools.

Keep the day short, hydrate, and protect from the sun,
and your water park day will be lots of fun.


The two main issues at both hotel pools and water parks are Pool Access and Water chemistry.  My recommendations for hotel pools and water parks are never very well received.  Many people feel strongly about taking their non-swimmers to water parks.  I stand by the advise listed here.  Keep your child safe. 

1.  I recommend that you never allow your child in a hotel _____________.

2.  Water Parks are not the same as Amusement Parks.  We recommend that water parks are only for____________ _______________.

Review the course materials if you have trouble answering these questions. Continue on by clicking next page below only when you are confident that you understand the material.