How Best to Experience Disney If You Haven't Planned Ahead


4.  Get up early & rope drop

FastPass+ is incredibly helpful, but getting up early and “rope dropping” still remains one of the absolutely best tips that gives guests the most advantage, allowing them to see the most attractions with the shortest wait times without FastPass. When exactly is “rope drop?”  If the park opens at 9am, you’ll want to be there around 8:00-8:30 (or even earlier when crowds are high). Sometimes you’ll even be let in early, or allowed to enter the park and walk to a certain point to queue up for popular attractions. At Animal Kingdom, for instance, it is very common for guests to enter the park before the posted opening to queue up at the entrance to Pandora.  

I cannot emphasize enough how much time you will save by arriving early!  By visiting the most popular attractions early in the day, you not only enjoy those with minimal waits, but you move on to the next set of attractions while everyone entering the park is joining the lengthy queues for the headliners.  Rope dropping truly allows you to stay ahead of the crowds all day, provided you have a sense of what attractions have long lines as the day goes on.

5.  Snag last- minute dining reservations

Die-hard planners know that you have to pounce on certain reservations at the 180-day mark, but this is not the case with many fabulous restaurants.  You can find a large variety of reservations available for breakfast, lunch, and dinner- even on the same day that you want to dine. You may even find availability for a lesser-known character meal, such as 1900 Park Fare.  Open the app, pick a time, and scroll through your options. People often drop their unwanted reservations about 24-48 hours before the time of the meal, so you can score some great ones if you look in that window.

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 Disney travel deal, share expert advice and their services are totally FREE! It’s genius!