Preparing for Disney is always fun and exciting, but can sometimes be an ordeal too. With so much to see and do, every now and then we need an expert’s advice on how we should handle our day in the parks with our families. There are lots of things most of us already know, such as going with some sort of plan, and staying hydrated throughout the day, but there are things that many people don’t realize as well. Here is a list of nine things no one tells you about preparing for a day in the Disney parks!
9. First Aid Station
Many people assume that it is unnecessary for them to familiarize themselves with the first aid station, however this is simply not true! It is always good to know where the first aid station is in each park and what services they offer. It is not just for people who are dehydrated or got sick while in the parks! It is a place to go for minor scrapes and Band-Aids for blisters too – and trust me, it is very likely that you will get a blister with all the walking you will have to do. Prepare yourself better and learn where the first aid stations are. You will not regret it!
8. Rest up!
When you’re in Disney, it is very easy to get the, “GO, GO, GO” mentality and forgetting to rest every now and then. It is so important to take breaks during the day, whether it is to go back to your room so your kids (and you!) can nap, or if you just rest for a half hour or hour on a bench in the parks to people watch. Spending the day in the Disney parks is very exhausting and in order to maximize your energy you will need to take a break!
7. Meal Times
A great way to prepare for a day in the Disney parks is to figure out what time you plan on having your meals, and more specifically, what time to NOT have your meals. Avoid the obvious times such as noon for lunch and 6pm for dinner as those times will be the most crowded and will extend your time eating, therefore cutting times for other activities. Plan to have an early lunch or late dinner and you will end up doing more in the parks before settling down for a nice family meal.
It rains all of the time when you are in Florida. Many of these rainstorms happen suddenly so a good way to prepare for unexpected rain is to pack a poncho! You can pick them up from your local dollar store and they don’t take up much space in your suitcase. This will help your day go more smoothly, keep you dry, and will end up save you money, too!
5. Extra socks
When on a water ride or caught in a random rain storm, many people often forget that their feet not only get wet, but end up staying wet due to having wet socks. Prepare for your day at the Disney parks by bringing an extra pair of socks! You will be able to change them very quickly and you won’t be uncomfortable having wet, hot feet all day.
4. Times Guide
Pick up a times guide at the parks to see what characters are there that day and what time the different shows and parades start. This will help you to plan your day accordingly so you aren’t scrambling around trying to meet characters that might not be out when you are there, or seeing a show that isn’t happening that day. It is a great way to help solidify your plan for the day in the parks.
3. Rope Drop
Get to the parks at rope drop to maximize your time at Disney. You will be able to ride a few of your favorite rides or meet your most beloved characters with little to no wait times before the rest of the crowds come in. It is also a great time to experience the parks when they’re just waking up. It is beautiful and relaxing so spend some time taking pictures before your day gets too crazy!
2. Extra Magic Hours
There are two strategies to Extra Magic Hours – either take advantage of them, or don’t! Many people will avoid parks that have Extra Magic Hours because they tend to end up busier during the day, whereas others prefer to go for the Extra Magic Hours particularly early in the morning or late at night because there are less people then. Keep in mind that Extra Magic Hours are perks available to those staying at a Disney resort so this step pertains to specifically them! If you are one of the lucky ones staying on property, discuss with your family if Extra Magic Hours are important to you and plan accordingly!
1. My Disney Experience App
The My Disney Experience App will help prepare you for everything having to do with the parks, from giving you the wait time for rides, to changing your fast passes and telling you where the nearest bathrooms are, plus so much more! If you are lost, there are maps of the parks in the app! If you forgot what time your dinner reservation was, check the app for your schedule! Downloading this app (it’s FREE!) is the single best way you can prepare for your day at Disney. Have fun!!
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!