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10 Must Pack Items for a Trip to Walt Disney World

Packing for a Walt Disney World vacation can be fun. Many people start to pack weeks in advance because they are so excited about the trip. The question is, just what exactly are you going to need for your vacation? You don’t want to over pack, but you also don’t want to leave items at home and then regret it. True, you can easily purchase most of the things here if you forget them, but most likely you would rather spend your souvenir money on actual souvenirs. Here are ten items that you will want to pack for your Walt Disney World vacation.

10. Hat

Do not underestimate the Florida sun! A hat will keep that sun off of your face. You’ll appreciate the shade, and you also will lessen the chance for a sunburn in the part of your hair. Each member of your party should have a hat and wear it during the heat of the day. That doesn’t mean you shouldn’t also buy Mickey Ears, you’ll want those as well.

9. Sunscreen

Speaking of the Florida sun, you need to protect your skin. Bring sunscreen, because it is a lot more expensive on Walt Disney World property. Follow the directions for applying and reapplying. If you’re planning on hitting a pool or a water park, buy a sunscreen that will not easily wash off. Everyone should wear sunscreen, even if you don’t normally burn. Your vacation isn’t the place to experience your first sunburn!

8. Sunglasses

Even with a hat, the sun can be too much for your eyes. You don’t want to spend the daylight hours of your vacation squinting. Bring cheap sunglasses from home for each member of your party and use them. Leave the expensive sunglasses at home or in your hotel. There are hundreds of pairs of sunglasses left on rides or lost in other ways at Walt Disney World each day. If you bring inexpensive sunglasses, it won’t be as big a loss if yours make their way into that statistic.

7. Umbrella or Poncho

While the sun shines brightly most days in the Sunshine State, chances are that you will run into rain at some point on your vacation, especially if you visit Walt Disney World during the rainy summer season. These storms usually pass quickly, but if you’re not prepared you’ll walk around soaked for the rest of the day. Check the forecast the day before you leave home, and throw some inexpensive ponchos or umbrellas into your suitcase. You’ll be glad that you have them.

6. Hand Sanitizer

You will touch things all day long at Walt Disney World. You’ll touch the handle on the tram, the finger scanner at the gate, the seat belts on the rides, and so much more. The same thing that you just touched will have been touched previously by countless other guests. People don’t cancel their Walt Disney World vacations because of a cold or even a touch of the flu, they just bring their germs with them. Don’t bring home an unwanted souvenir, use hand sanitizer often.

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5. Plastic Zipper Bags

Throw a couple different size boxes of plastic zipper bags into your suitcase when you’re packing. They’ll come in handy at the parks. You can use them to keep your phone dry on a wet ride or during a rainstorm. They’re great to carry snacks in. Keep your hand sanitizer and sunscreen in bags so that they don’t leak all over your stuff. Zipper bags can keep small toys clean. They even make it easy to keep your things organized in your bag. If you have plastic zipper bags, you’ll use them. Don’t leave home without them.

4. Bathing Suit

There is a good chance that you will spend part of your Walt Disney World vacation in the water. If you’re staying on property you will want to make at least one visit to your resort’s awesome pools. Most of the off property hotels have pools as well, and many of them are amazing. Don’t forget that two of the best water parks on the planet are located at Walt Disney World. If you feel like spending a day away from Orlando, there are several incredible beaches an hour or two away. Even if you’re planning on spending every waking moment in one of the four theme parks, pack your bathing suit anyway. It won’t take up much room, and you don’t want to wish that you had it.

3. Smartphone (and charger!)

While it might seem like a no-brainer to bring your phone with you, make sure that it’s ready. Download the My Disney Experience App, because it will save you a lot of time and frustration while on your vacation. You might also want to clear out some space so that you can take as many pictures as you want. If your family plans to go off in different directions at any point, each group should have a Smartphone. You don’t have to actually use the phone part (after all, you’re on vacation) but you’ll want to have it handy.

2. Comfortable Walking Shoes

You will do a lot of walking each day that you’re in a theme park. Each member of your party will need broken in walking shoes. Don’t worry about fashion, think about comfort instead. If you have sandals that don’t hurt your feet, apply sunscreen to any visible skin. A sunburn on the top of your feet can ruin your vacation.

1. MagicBands or Tickets

If you’re staying on property you will receive MagicBands in the mail. Don’t forget to pack them! Your MagicBand will get you into your room, into the parks, onto rides, and more. Disney can issue you new MagicBands if you forget them, but that will cost you extra. If you don’t have a MagicBand but purchased your tickets ahead of time, double check to see that they are packed. If you forget your tickets, you might have to purchase new ones and then plan another trip to Walt Disney World to use the tickets that you left at home. Wait…that doesn’t sound all that bad. Still, check to see that your MagicBands or tickets are safely packed. If you’re flying, keep them in your carry on. Better yet, put on your MagicBands right before you leave home, and let the vacation begin!

About PaulaK

I grew up in Western Massachusetts. When I was nine my family went to Disneyland and I was hooked. I grew up, attended New England College in Henniker, NH and eventually moved to Virginia. I worked as a disc jockey, married and became a full time mom when our daughter was born. Fast forward several years. In 2010 we moved to Central Florida and my Disney obsession grew. I now work as a freelance writer and spend my spare time in the parks. Under the name Paula Brown I penned the novels Dream Wanderers and The Coffee Cruiser. I also am a co-author of Dining at Walt Disney World: The Definitive Guide. I'm obsessed with Star Wars, so this is a good time to live in Central Florida. I've been a vegetarian for well over a decade, a choice that my daughter eventually made as well. While my husband still hasn't joined us fully he has given up most meats except for seafood. I was relieved to find that vegetarian dining is not difficult at Walt Disney World.