Since Walt Disney World is such a massive vacation destination, it is no surprise that many guests spend countless hours preparing for each trip to ensure that they have the most magical time ever. Walt Disney World is home to countless attractions, entertainment, shopping locations, dining locations, and more throughout four theme parks, two water parks, Disney Springs and over two dozen Disney Resorts. With so much to enjoy, guests can easily go from planning to being overwhelmed when trying to ensure that they can experience as much as possible throughout each trip. Guests who do some simple planning and shopping before leaving home can avoid getting stressed out and ensure that their vacations will be magical from the first attraction to the final moments in the parks. Each planning and preparing some items ahead of time are sure to save time, money, and frustration once in the parks ensuring the perfect vacation. Here are the top twelve things that guests should do and buy before going to Walt Disney World.
1. Choose A Disney Resort —
The first things guests should do when planning a trip to Walt Disney World is choose their Disney Resort. With over two dozen Disney Resorts to choose from, this task may seem daunting but the first step is choosing which price category works for each guest. The Disney Resorts are broken down into three price categories with Deluxe being the most expensive, Value having the best deals, and Moderate falling somewhere in the middle. Once guests choose a price category, they can then narrow their Disney Resort choice down to a few options that makes the decision easier.
2. Book FastPasses —
All guests who visit Walt Disney World are entitled to utilize the FastPass system. FastPasses act as reservations that allow guests to enjoy specific attractions at a designated time with little to no wait. Guests can book three FastPasses per day for one park in advance and those who stay on property in a Disney Resort can book sixty days ahead of time and those who stay off property can book thirty days in advance. FastPasses are a great way to save lots of time that would have otherwise been spent waiting on lengthy lines for popular attractions in the four theme parks!
3. Book Advanced Dining Reservations —
Guests who plan on enjoying a full service meal while in Walt Disney World definitely need to make an Advanced Dining Reservation, or ADR. Advanced Dining Reservations can be booked up to one hundred and eighty days in advance and are absolutely necessary for popular dining locations that tend to fill up quickly.
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4. Create A Schedule —
A great way to reduce street before leaving for a Disney vacation is creating a tentative schedule for each day of the trip. Guests who plot out where they would like to visit and what they would like to enjoy each day helps to narrow down the decision making each morning which in turn can delay leaving the resort. By knowing where they would like to go each day, guests can then also book their FastPasses and Advanced Dining Reservations accordingly and save lots to time.
5. Know Where Things Are —
A big time saver once in Walt Disney World is knowing where things are located. By simply spending some time checking out the maps of the theme parks, water parks, Disney Resort, and Disney Springs before leaving home, guests will have a general idea about where attractions, amenities, dining, shopping, entertainment, transportation, and more are located. This saves loads of time once on vacation which otherwise would have been spent stopping to ask for directions or consulting a map.
6. Know How To Get Around —
Guests who stay on property in a Disney Resort are entitled to complimentary Disney transportation which can bring them to any location throughout Walt Disney World. By knowing ahead of time what types of transportation are available from each park and Disney Resort, guests can easily get around without wasting time taking unnecessary trips or stopping to constantly ask for directions.
7. Customize Magic Bands —
Each guest that stays on property in a Disney Resort is entitled to their own Magic Band which ships at no charge to their home several weeks before the vacation begins. Guests who do not log onto the My Disney Experience App lose out on the chance to customize their Magic Band to one of many bright colors including pink, green, blue, and orange. Those who do not customize their Magic Bands receive gray ones when checking in, but also have the opportunity to buy a specially designed one at many locations throughout Walt Disney World.
8. Purchase PhotoPass —
A great service that is offered throughout Walt Disney World allows guests to capture the magic of their vacations while ensuring that they whole family is in the shot. Disney’s PhotoPass service features hundreds of professional photographers scattered throughout the property who are there to take wonderful photos of guests in perfect locations. By purchasing the service before leaving home guests can have access to each photo taken of them as well as any attraction photos and magic shots which instill some special Disney magic into an ordinary photo.
9. Purchase Any Costumes —
Many children love to dress up like their favorite character while enjoying time in Walt Disney World, however the costumes sold on property can be pretty costly. Guests who are looking to purchase costumes should do so before leaving home to save themselves lots of time and money once in the parks! Another option is to make a costume at home, ensuring that it will be totally unique and memorable!
10. Purchase An External Battery —
Between taking photos, logging into the My Disney Experience App, and other genera use, cell phones get a workout while on vacation in Walt Disney World. This results in many guests finding that their batteries have died by the middle of each day leading to some frustration. One of the best purchases to make before leaving home is an external battery that guests can use to charge on the go, ensuring that their phones never die!
11. Purchase Ponchos —
Walt Disney World is located in Central Florida which is home to lots of rain, especially strong afternoon thunderstorms in the hot summer months. Guests who don’t want to let the rain stop them simply throw on a poncho and carry on enjoying the parks. While ponchos are sold throughout the parks, guests who purchase them before leaving home are sure to save some money.
12. Purchase Sunscreen —
With the hot sun, high temperatures, high humidity, and lots of time spent outdoors, guests who enjoy a vacation in Walt Disney World can easily find themselves sunburned which can lead to discomfort and irritation. While sunscreen is sold throughout the property, guests who purchase it at home before leaving can ensure that they save a few dollars as well as have their favorite brand on hand at all times.