When you’re on a Disney vacation, a lot happens. Each day has some new experiences, some funny inside jokes, and some truly noteworthy anecdotes. However, unless you have the discipline to actually record everything in a journal (which can be difficult after a long day), you’re bound to end up telling your friends a very disjointed and generalized version of how wonderful your trip was. This means that any Disney newbies might miss out on some important tips and details, so if you’re heading off on your first Disney vacation, take a look at this list to fill in the blanks!
10) You won’t want to leave. It’s true that no one tells you this reality–because it’s usually obvious, especially if you’re there with all of your loved ones! Why would you and your family want to leave the “most magical place on Earth”?
9) There is a LOT of food. Your fellow vacationers might mention that there is always food to be found, and that it is delicious, but the serious scope of culinary opportunities at all Disney locations cannot really be grasped until you see it–and eat it–for yourself. Keep in mind that the Disney Chefs are also incredibly friendly and attentive, so don’t be shy about mentioning preferences or dietary restrictions! They’ll make the extra effort!
8) Repeating rides and attractions is completely acceptable. Disney is all about having fun and making memories, so if you find yourself wanting more of The Haunted Mansion, you go right ahead and get back in line! Just think of Walt Disney World as a judgement-free zone; other visitors won’t notice that you’re repeating a ride, and they won’t care if you are! After all, they might be doing the same thing.
7) Photography doesn’t have to be professional. The Disney PhotoPass photographers can definitely come in handy, but try to keep your own camera around, just in case, and always take a moment to look at any pictures that were taken on rides and roller coasters. Those photos are often funnier and more purchase-worthy than you might expect!
6) Meeting some Disney characters is worth it. If you have an autograph book, then you probably take your Meet-n’-Greets pretty seriously, but not everyone is as committed as you might be. If you’d rather meet a couple characters along the way on “accident” instead of seeking them out, go for it! Each character’s personality is different, and each Cast Member does an impeccable job when it comes to the maintenance of accuracy. If you’re feeling particularly efficient, try a Character Breakfast to meet more characters in one place (although these are usually pretty crowded).
5) Your resort is worth some extra time. Chances are you specifically picked out your Disney resort–so enjoy it! Too many people focus on the parks at the expense of their temporary home, and these resorts really are deserving of the extra attention, with food, events and stunningly themed architecture to suit your every requirement!
4) Use travel and indoor rides to your advantage. The Florida heat can become a serious threat on a Disney vacation–which is why sunblock and water are so crucial–but you can actually avoid a lot of sunshine with a little planning. Using monorails and ferries like the FriendShip boats in Epcot are a convenient and leisurely way to cool off and get somewhere at the same time; the same can be said for attractions like Walt Disney’s Enchanted Tiki Room and DINOSAUR, where you manage to be both entertained and refreshed indoors!
3) Surprises can and do pop up often on a Disney vacation. From street shows to quiet gardens, you are bound to find more than one occasion to stop unexpectedly, and you always should. Just pick a few attractions for the day, use some Fastpasses for them, and save the rest of the time for whatever new Disney delight might come your way.
2) The Disney Cast Members have a great impact on your vacation. When you spend a week surrounded by friendly people, you get used to it pretty quickly (after all, isn’t this the way that the real world should be, too?). Since they’re relatively accustomed to it, previous visitors probably won’t point out the resilient affability of the Disney employees, or their endearingly considerate natures; but you’ll definitely notice those traits for yourself when you start your own journey to Walt Disney World (get started early with a Disney Travel Agent!).
1) Bad things can still happen on a Disney vacation. When Disney-goers are recounting their trip experiences to you, you’ll usually never hear about any sort of grumpy kids, sunburned faces, or conflicts. Why? Because Disney is a place of happiness! People might be willing to openly complain about things on a regular vacation, but the expectations are different for Disney trips. No one is going to want to tell you that they weren’t one hundred percent happy, one hundred percent of the time, but you do need to be prepared. People can still get colds on a Disney vacation, and kids can still throw tantrums. These problems are not as bad at Walt Disney World, of course–partly due to the magical atmosphere, and partly due to Disney’s incredible Cast Members–so there’s no need to feel disillusioned. Your Disney vacation WILL be a magical one, no matter what, but knowing that there might be the occasional obstacle does make it less rough when it happens.
As these tips suggest, Disney can surprise you a lot–but there’s no place better for surprises than somewhere as welcoming and beautiful as Walt Disney World! If you’re open to improvisation and plan just a little, you can have a stupendous Disney vacation, no matter how much you know beforehand!
BONUS TIP: Consider planning and booking your next Disney trip with an Authorized Disney Vacation Planner you can trust like Mickey Travels. They’ll help you get the best Walt Disney World deal, share expert advice and their services are totally FREE! It’s genius!