If you are new to theme Park vacations or Walt Disney World Resort, you may wonder where to start and what to expect. A few misconceptions about Walt Disney World circulate and sometimes discourage people from visiting the Most Magical Place on Earth. Don’t let rumors or bad Park advice discourage you. Common misconceptions about a Walt Disney World vacation are repeated often so today we are debunking those myths!
Stick to the Magic Kingdom
Disney commercials, ads, and photos depict a family beaming as they explore the Magic Kingdom. While the Magic Kingdom is a fantastic Disney Park, it may not be the ideal Park fit for every Guest. At the same time, I understand that the attractions at Magic Kingdom and the iconic Cinderella Castle are legendary. But Star Wars buffs would be remiss not to visit Hollywood Studios to experience Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge.
Animal fanatics might prefer a visit to Disney’s Animal Kingdom. Researching attractions to select the best Park breakdown for your stay is essential to enjoying your Disney vacation. Don’t feel like you have to stick to the Magic Kingdom or spend your one Park day in Disney’s Magic Kingdom; there is so much to see!
Visiting A Park One Day is Cheapest
Ok, hear me out. A glance at the ticket pricing often makes Guests search for ways to trim Park days to make the most of their vacation budget. While fewer days in the Park may add up to a lower ticket cost total, opting for fewer days in the Parks may not be the best ticket value for your family. Ticket costs decrease a bit per day when you buy multiple days of tickets at once.
Rolling two Disney vacations into one longer trip will lower ticket costs since you’ll pay less per Park day. Remember, visiting Walt Disney World Resort during slower times of the year is a great way to save money. You can also save by choosing one Park to play in per day, and skipping the cost of a Park Hopper ticket.
You Can’t Bring Your Food
Unlike other theme Parks, Walt Disney World Parks welcome Guests bringing snacks and coolers into the Park. Alcohol and glass bottles are not allowed, but aside from that, you are good to go! Bringing canned beverages, bottled water, snacks, and lunch into Disney Park is allowed.
Packing snacks is one of my favorite ways to save cash on vacation. Even bringing your drinks and water bottles to Disney’s Animal Kingdom or other Parks will result in significant savings at the end of the day. Use this money to budget for other Disney vacation fun.
Soak Up the Sun
Walt Disney World draws Guests from around the globe, many of which underestimate the Florida heat. Guests visiting during summer when the Parks are ablaze with heat can suffer from sunburn and heat exhaustion. Even if you are vacationing outside in the dead of summer, know that Florida weather can be intense and unexpected, so come prepared with sunscreen and cool clothing.
Prepare for the weather by cutting down on soft drinks, increasing water intake to stay hydrated, and wearing breathable clothes with sun protection. Listen to your body and take shelter in an air-conditioned restaurant, attraction, or shop if you feel heat exhaustion setting in.
You Can’t Afford Table Service Dining
While it is true that quick-service dining is a cheaper option overall, you might be surprised to learn there are affordable table-service meals and even character dining you can enjoy on vacation. Disney dining has fun and affordable options for every family. Lower cost character dining can be found by booking popular character dinner spots for breakfast instead.
Ohana, Cape May Cafe, and Hollywood & Vine are all breakfast options that provide a table-service dining experience with characters. Always take the time to research meal costs and talk to your Disney travel agent about choices. You may be surprised to learn what options are still within your budget!
Parks Are the Same All Year
Think Disney Parks are pretty much the same year-round? Well, that could not be further from the truth. Of course, everyone knows that visiting around the holidays will mean bright Christmas decorations and seasonal shows. But there are other seasonal differences and special events throughout the year. EPCOT Festival of the Holidays and the International Food & Wine Festival at EPCOT are two of my favorite Disney events.
Outside seasonal offerings you’ll notice a difference in seasonal costs and crowds. The time of year you visit affects Disney Resort cost, ticket pricing, and crowds in the Park. Visiting during a slower time of the year may save some money on lodging and will mean less time waiting in attraction lines.
Get To the Park When You Can
You are incorrect if you buy into the misconception that entering the Park early in the morning is not a big deal. As a Disney Parks veteran, I’ve repeatedly watched families make this mistake. Getting into the Park early is critical to getting the most out of your Disney dollar by visiting more attractions daily. Entering the Park while many Guests are still snoozing can grant easy walk-on access to a few popular rides as soon as the Park opens in the morning.
Remember to allow yourself plenty of travel time to the Park. A 9 a.m. Park opening at Disney’s Magic Kingdom means you should line up at the entrance ready for “rope drop” (Park opening) at 8:45 a.m. at the latest. Arriving early means you can enjoy cooler weather and feel like you saw at least a few attractions without long wait times.
Staying On Disney Property Is Too Expensive
So many people dismiss the idea of staying on Disney property at a Walt Disney World Resort before even exploring pricing. With value and moderate resorts, Disney caters to an extensive range of Guest budgets. You may find that staying on the Disney Property is comparable in price to off property accomodations. Remember, visiting during the peak season will cost more than months with lighter Guest traffic.
Guests visiting during “off times” may be surprised to find Disney Resorts a great deal cheaper than other times of the year. Check Walt Disney World Resort prices when planning a Disney vacation. Don’t assume you can’t afford to stay in the middle of the magic.
See It All
A trip to Walt Disney World is costly, so Guests often arrive at the Park on a mission to see and do it all. While I believe it is vital to do as much as possible on your vacation, over-planning the trip and running your family from ride to ride may result in a negative experience. Prioritize your trip must-do attractions and decide what is most important for your family to see and do on your vacation. Remember, you can always save some fun for next time.
Don’t buy into these misconceptions about a Walt Disney World Resort vacation. Get ready for the vacation of a lifetime!