Planning a Disney trip can be stressful. A lot goes into ensuring you have a successful, fun, and fulfilling visit, so I’m here to offer you some free advice — and some extremely simple tips that will make your trip easier.
As much scheduling or researching you do, once you arrive at the parks, it can sometimes be too much to handle. You may forget something along the way or a certain detail might not cross your mind. Plus, between the crowds, the extreme heat (depending on when you visit), and if people in your group are tired and hungry, your time can quickly turn sour.
But, if you keep in mind the following tricks, you might not have such an overwhelming day. So, here are a few of the things I always do — and you should think about doing too.
1. Get Free Water
Did you know you can get free water at every park? You save a lot of money by not buying bottled water. By “free water”, I don’t mean the drinking fountains. At most quick and counter service restaurants (usually if they have fountain drinks), you can ask for a free cup of water. Sometimes there are even water stands set up inside quick and counter service spots for park-goers. This is definitely the cheaper route.
2. Be Aware Of Others & Your Surroundings
This might seem like a silly tip, especially if you think of yourself as a considerate person, but not everyone is polite at Disney parks. There are many individuals who are in their own world, are in a hurry, or can just be plain rude. Disney should be a positive place (which it is most of the time), so try to add to the magical atmosphere by being polite and paying attention to your surroundings. Everyone is at Disney to have a fabulous time, so by watching where you’re walking or not stepping in front of people who are taking photos are a few examples of how to improve your day — and someone else’s.
3. Listen To Cast Members
Disney cast members know what they’re doing and talking about. It’s important to remember they are just doing their jobs. They work hard, so everyone needs to appreciate them. For example, if a cast member tells you not to do something or that you can’t sit/stand somewhere during a show, then listen to them. You wouldn’t believe how many arguments I’ve seen because guests don’t want to listen to cast members who tell them they have to stand behind the white line (for safety reasons) during the Happily Ever After fireworks show at Magic Kingdom.
4. Wear Comfortable Shoes
If you don’t like to walk, don’t go to Disney. Seriously, you will get your steps in and walk a lot of miles, so wear the best shoes possible. I always wear tennis shoes, because they are the most comfortable for me — and my feet stay happy in the process. Trust me, if your feet hurt or you wear the wrong shoes, you will be miserable.
5. Put Sunscreen On Before You Leave The Hotel
First of all, always wear sunscreen. Protecting your skin is important. Secondly, always wear sunscreen at Disney. You will be in the sun all day and you don’t want to get a nasty sunburn. Finally, apply sunscreen before you go to the park. It will be one less thing you’ll have to do once you arrive. You won’t have to stop and step to the side to lather or spray on sunblock. It’s seriously a time saver. Of course, you may want to pack sunscreen in your bag if you need it later in the day, but it’s no fun if you have to put it on once you get to the park. All you should be worrying about is walking into the park and taking in all of the magic — not sunscreen.
6. Take A Break
You don’t have to spend every second of your day at the park. It’s OK — and important — to take a break. You want to make sure you’re having fun at all times and that’s not going to happen if people are cranky and tired. Plus, you want to take care of yourself. When it’s hot and sunny, you’re going to want to take a breather. I always go back to the hotel, typically in the late afternoon when it’s the hottest, and take an hour nap. I feel so refreshed and ready to take on the parks again for the remainder of the day.
7. Iron Your Clothes The Night Before
I’m well aware not everyone irons their clothes, nor do they have to. BUT, if you are someone who irons, then here’s a tip: iron your outfits the night before. This will save you so much time. This way you won’t need to do it in the morning. As much time as you can save before you head to the parks, the better.
8. Plan Showers Accordingly
Like ironing, try showering the night before. Plus, after a full day at the park, you’ll most likely want to shower before bed, because you might feel dirty and sweaty, not to mention you probably want to wash off all that sunscreen. If you wait to shower in the morning, well, that takes up a lot of time, especially if you have a big family. Speaking of, you could also try splitting up showers with your family by having a couple members take them at night and then the others shower in the morning. Even planning showers and the time it takes to get ready is important when you’re at Disney.
9. Know It’s Going To Be Crowded
There are always people at Disney. Going in with the understanding you’re probably going to have to fight crowds and deal with a lot of people is the way to do it. Getting worked up over all of the people isn’t worth it, so try not to let it stress you out and just enjoy your time, because that’s what Disney is all about.
Hopefully these tips will help in your Disney planning and make your visit that much better once you’re officially at the most magical place on earth!