A trip to Walt Disney World is supposed to be magical. It is possible, however, to remove that magic spell. It is easy to make mistakes that will ruin your vacation. Here are seven errors that are all too common. If you don’t do them, you’ll have a better time while in Central Florida. Avoid these mistakes at all costs.
Mistake # 7 – Don’t Check Park Hours and Schedules
If you want to get the most out of a park, you’ll need to know the hours. If you’re not at the Magic Kingdom 15 minutes before it opens, you’ll miss the Welcome Show. If you plan to stay late, you’ll want to know when the fireworks are. It is also good to know which park has Extra Magic Hours, even if you’re not staying on Disney property. The schedules for the live shows change, and if there’s a show that you really want to see you should have an idea ahead of time when it is. Finding the park hours and show schedules on the Walt Disney World website is easy, and it only takes a minute. A little bit of knowledge can save you a whole lot of hassle.
Mistake # 6 – Don’t Make FastPass+ Reservations
FastPass+ is easy to use, and it is the best way to make sure that you’ll be able to experience a few of your must do rides or attractions. If you’re staying at a Disney Resort you can make your reservations up to 60 days in advance, all others have 30 days. FastPass+ is the best way to avoid waiting in some of the longer lines. You can change your times or selections if you need to as your trip draws closer. If you arrive in a park without reservations, it’s not too late. Just find a FastPass+ kiosk. Love it or hate it, FastPass+ is here to stay, so use the system.
Mistake # 5 – Don’t Drink Enough Water
A trip to a Disney park is more physical than you might realize. All that activity will dehydrate you. The Florida sun will also take its toll, even in the winter. Don’t ignore your thirst. Plain water is best to hydrate you, not soda, coffee, or alcohol. Take advantage of the many water fountains all over the parks. You can also ask for a free cup of ice water at most quick service food options. You’ll stay healthy and have more energy if you drink enough water.
Mistake #4 – Don’t Wear Comfortable Shoes
Blisters will ruin your vacation. You will walk for miles each day that you spend in a park, so make sure that you’re wearing comfortable, broken in shoes. You want to look great in that picture with Mickey, but a Disney park is no place for heels. It’s also not where you want to discover that your new sneakers rub your foot on the side. Make sure that your shoes are broken in before you leave home.
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Mistake # 3 – Don’t Make Dining Reservations
It’s easy to forget to make dining reservations at the restaurants that you really want to try. Reservations can be made up to 180 days in advance, that’s half a year! Who wants to plan details that far out? Too often making the important reservations gets put on the back burner, and then you arrive in Florida without reservations at the restaurants that you really want to try. Make your reservations early, especially for a hard to get restaurant like Be Our Guest. If you change your mind, you can always cancel. Remember that a credit card is now required to hold reservations, if you forget to cancel you will be charged.
Mistake # 2 – Don’t Use Sunscreen
Sunscreen is one of the most important things that you can pack for your Walt Disney World vacation. The Florida sun is hot, and it can do a real number on your skin; even if you don’t normally burn. Bring sunscreen and use it often, even in the winter and on cloudy days. Just like blisters, a sunburn will ruin your vacation.
Mistake # 1 – Don’t Get Your Rest
Tired adults are cranky, tired children are crankier. (Or is that the other way around?) One of the best ways to ruin your trip to Walt Disney World is to not get enough rest. Plan an extra day so that you can sleep in one day during your vacation. Don’t stay from open until close each day. You’re going to want to see and do everything, but that’s just not possible. If you know before you leave home that you aren’t going to try to do it all, you’ll have a much better time. Make a list of which rides and attractions you really want to experience, and consider anything else that you do a bonus. If you can, plan to head back to your hotel for a couple of hours each day for a nap. If you do less but are well rested, your whole family will have a much better time than if you rode everything but never took a break. A vacation isn’t supposed to make you need another vacation. Get your sleep.