Who could ever forget their first trip to Disney? It’s magical to say the least. Planning a trip to Walt Disney World, on the other hand, can be a bit overwhelming. There is a lot to think of and plan for. Since we travel there often, I frequently get asked for tips and tricks on planning a trip, so I thought it was time to write them up and share them with you!
- Plan ahead – Seriously, plan ahead. While the thought of an impromptu trip to Disney sounds wonderful, it may end up in disaster. Do your research and make informed decisions about your trip. Now, more than ever, planning is a must. Resorts fill up, dining reservations are few and far between, FastPass selections are hard to come by, but with a little planning, all of that can be avoided. Speaking of resorts…
- Stay on property – Yes, I know your uncle’s brother-in-law’s mother has a great timeshare, but there are perks to staying on Disney property. By staying in a Disney resort, you get Extra Magic Hours (time before the park opens or after they close that is only available to resort guests), free transportation to the parks and Disney Springs, free transportation to/from the airport, Magicbands, earlier FastPass selection times, free parking at the parks, and so much more. It’s even timesaver! Think of this when you stay off property. You either have to drive to the parks and pay to park for the day or wait for a shuttle that can take upwards of an hour to get to you. Plus, Disney resorts are immersive and part of the experience. Do yourself a favor and stay on property.
- Stay longer – Walt Disney World is big and there is a lot to do and see! Don’t try to fit four parks into four days. It won’t end well. You’ll end up hot, overly tired, and cranky and so will your kids. Tired + Florida heat + cranky are not good combos. If you plan to do all four parks, I would highly recommend taking a ‘free’ day in between each park to recoup and recover. It’s good for you and your kids. It also gives you a chance to take advantage of all the hotel has to offer, like their magnificent pools! If you can’t take that much time off, plan less park days. Trust me on this. It will allow you to enjoy your trip.
- Get Memory Maker – I know, it’s more money to spend, but it’s worth it. Memory Maker is a part of Disney’s PhotoPass service, photographers & cameras set up around the park and on the attractions, that will capture the best aspects of your trip. No more asking a stranger to take a picture for you or leave a family member out so they can take it. All of your magical moments will be available for you to download and share.
- Be prepared to drop some serious coinage – There’s no way around it, Disney is expensive, but you get what you pay for! Yes, the ticket prices can cause a little sticker shock, but when compared to local amusement parks, their pricing isn’t unreasonable. The service at Disney is top level from the resorts to the restaurants to the parks. You get the best of the best. There are some great ways to save money on a Disney trip, so be on the lookout for that coming soon!
- Use a travel agent – If all of this feels like too much, I would suggest going through a travel agent. Using a travel agent to book a Disney trip is FREE for you! You pay them nothing, tell them what you want, and they do all the legwork to plan the most magical trip for you and your family.
There you have it. Those are my top tips for planning a trip to Walt Disney World. I hope they were helpful! If you have been before, what would your top tip be?