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Have you heard of Kidzania? It’s one of our favorite places to visit while traveling! Milana has visited the Bangkok, Tokyo and London locations and we just returned from the new Dallas one. Kidzania has locations all over the world and now in the US, with Dallas being the first. New Jersey is next, even though the website lists it as NY, it is in fact on the Jersey side just like the Statue of Liberty but that’s a whole other debate! Chicago is also coming sometime next year, and Kidzania Los Angeles (well Santa Ana in Orange County, not sure why the OC is so forgotten!) is coming in 2021 and we are very excited for the opening.
What is Kidzania?
To put it simply, Kidzania is a city built for kids. Kids ages 4 and up can participate, though I personally think kids 6 and up will get much more out of the experience. Milana was just 4 when we did the Bangkok one, however she’s always been super social and went right in without hesitation and joined a school group (not even English speaking!) and we didn’t see her for hours after! So if your 4 year old loves to be part of a group and can handle following instruction and not need your assistance, then go for it. Otherwise, wait until they are a bit older. Keep in mind that the overseas locations will not speak English (aside from London) however the language barrier has never bothered Milana and she did the activities along with everyone else despite not understanding what was being said. They did mention it to us like 10 times though while we were buying tickets just in case!
They do have a toddler area at all locations, with a little play area, supermarket, etc. however it’s only enough entertainment for about an hour. If you have toddlers, I’d leave them at home as you should expect to spend a minimum of 4 hours here to get the full experience and they can get bored after a while! If your kids are 9 and older, you can also drop them off and go to the mall, which is probably why all the locations we have been to are inside huge shopping malls!
When you first arrive, you will be given a wristband that matches your kids and they cannot leave the facility without you. There is a parent lounge at each facility and I highly recommend you use it. Let your kids enjoy this amazing experience without you. They choose their jobs, work and earn KidZos, which can be used at the store inside Kidzania. They can also save their money and deposit it at the bank, where they are given a debit card to use as they please. In short, they get a glimpse into the real adult life! Be sure to tell your kids to get their college degree first at the university, as they will earn more at each job with a degree!
8-10 kids can participate at each job at a time, making it a fun, education experience without overcrowding. The activities are 20-30 minutes long. The jobs are performed behind closed doors and parents aren’t allowed to enter but can look through the glass doors. Kids decide everything without any adult input, a great way to teach them independence. Kids earn KidZos at all jobs, however some activities they will have to pay for with their Kidzos, things like rock climbing, pizza making, etc.
There is a device outside of each activity, that shows what the job description is, recommended age, how many kids can participate at a time, what they will earn, how long the activity is, and the time of the next session.
What kinds of jobs are at Kidzania?
Well this will depend on location but for the most part, all the locations have the same jobs but different local companies sponsoring them. One of the most popular ones at every single location we have been to is the firefighter job. This is super fun, as the kids learn about fire safety then get to ride in the fire truck and put out a fire. If you arrive at opening, it’s a good idea to do this one first as the line gets longer as the day goes on.
Other jobs include vet, doctor, NICU nurse, actor, window washer, chef, pilot, police officer, magician, fitness instructor…to name a few! You’ll be surprised at which your kids enjoy the most, it’s usually not the doctor ones! In Asia, they also had auto mechanics, which was pretty fun.
There are also jobs that are sponsored by local restaurants where the kids can cook different things from those restaurants. In Dallas, this was a pizza and burger place where the kids got to make their own pizzas and fries. I know their taco place is opening soon!
What did we think of Kidzania USA?
The first Kidzania in the USA is very similar to the ones we have visited in Asia and Europe. The biggest difference would be the parents, they followed their kids around all day long while in Asia and Europe, they relaxed in the lounge and let the kids do their thing. Go utilize the lounge, your kids will be fine while learning some awesome skills! I had the lounge to myself the first day and two other parents the following day in Dallas, everyone else was following their kids around. Milana had a blast and would come up and check in every so often. Your kids cannot exit the facility without you, the bracelets prohibit them leaving with anyone whose bracelet doesn’t match theirs.
Milana really loved her time here and is really excited for the opening of the one near our house in Orange County, CA. We came two days in a row and spent over 10 hours total at the facility. If you have kids who enjoy learning and experiencing all sorts of jobs, a visit to Kidzania is a must!
Our Tips for Visiting Kidzania
-Tell your kids to go to the University and get a degree first! They will earn more money at each job with a degree.
-Get your kids a Kidzania Pazzport when you first arrive. They will be able to use it at every location they visit and get a sticker from each location. They’ll also get a stamp for each activity they complete, and earn 2 KidZos more per activity with the Pazzport. Kidzania doesn’t offer annual passes (we hope they will in the future!) so this is the closest thing to a loyalty program, giving you discounts the more you go. The more activities your kids complete, the more discounts and perks they earn.
-Have your kids wear comfortable clothing! They’ll be running, climbing, etc. for hours. Flip flops may not be the best choice and some activities (like rock climbing) did not allow kids with flip flops.
-Since you need to pay for the food activities (making pizza, fries, etc), have the kids do them when it’s lunch time so they get to enjoy their creation when they are actually hungry.
Is Kidzania Worth the Cost?
We certainly think it is! It costs approximately $40 USD for a child admission, giver or take depending on location. Adults pay around $15. But it’s so worth it! This is an immersive, interactive experience unlike any other. I can guarantee your kids will love it! We are already planning on visiting Kuala Lumpur and Singapore’s Kidzania in April, followed by the new NJ one in the fall.
Have you taken your kids to Kidzania? What did you think of it?