Top 10 Walt Disney World Vacation Mistakes

Magic Kingdom Crowds at Entrance

10. Not taking the time to look at the official Walt Disney World site…

to see Park Hours, Special Events, and especially the refurbishment schedule so you know what, if any, of the attractions you want to experience are going to be closed for refurb, before you arrive. It may change your mind about other aspects of your planning. Make your trip even easier with the My Disney Experience App right on your phone.

9. Not preparing for getting autographs or meeting characters.

If you have people in your party who want to do some character meet and greets and maybe get autographs, choose those ahead of time and try to get FP+ if available. Choose what the autographed item will be on this trip, such as an autograph book you buy, or put together yourself, or a bag, hat, or even pillowcases are very popular. Have a couple of Sharpies available for signing.

8. Having no idea what the rides and attractions are and where they are.

Read about the rides and attractions, and the parks layout, while you are planning so you have an understanding of just how BIG Walt Disney World is. You most likely will not be able to experience everything in one trip, so think about what rides everyone can go on, what attractions would be enjoyed together or if you will split up for an afternoon. Don’t walk up to an attraction blind asking what it is, you will have a better time if you know what is here before you get here.

7. Not setting priorities in what you want to experience on your vacation.

Then, break it down into each day to make it more manageable. Be prepared for rides to go down due to weather conditions and have an alternate plan if that happens. Don’t expect that you can do everything here in one trip.

6. Ignoring signs of dehydration.

Staying hydrated is extremely important as this is the number one sickness among guests in the parks. If you did not bring a water bottle, just request a cup of water at any of the counter-service locations.

5. Not being prepared for weather conditions.

Do not forget your sunscreen, ponchos or any other dress items that you need once you discover the forecast for the day.   Even on very cloudy days you can still get bad sunburn here so make sure everyone, including the children, have sunscreen. You will want to carry ponchos for the rainy season and you may need a light to medium jacket in the winter. Reading Disney vacation blogs, like this one, will give you the heads up about what you need during your upcoming vacation.

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4. Not making FastPass+ reservations…

as soon as you are able may result in you spending time in long lines for the most popular attractions. If you are a Disney resort guest you can make FP+ selections up to 60 days ahead of your arrival. If you are an Annual Passholder you can make up to seven days selections in the next 30 day time period. Once you complete one day, another is added, for a rolling total of 7 days at any one time.

3. Not making table-service reservations

Especially if you are on the Disney Dining Plan. WDW resort guests can make their dining reservations up to 180 days ahead of their arrival. Choose carefully, and research the menus to choose a restaurant where everyone in your party will find something they want to eat. If you are not on the Disney Dining Plan, check the lunch menus to see if they are basically the same but at a lower price.

2. Not taking advantage of the tools Disney gives you.

One of the easiest things you can do to make your day go well is to pick download the My Disney Experience App and/or pick up a Park Map and Times Guide as you enter each park. This will show you the layout of the park, a description of each attraction, restaurant locations, where bathrooms are, and many other important things can be found. The Times Guide will give you the times for the attractions and show times, where and when the Disney Characters will be available, when parades and fireworks will take place, and dining locations and hours as well as other park hours.

1. Failing to do any research…

is the mistake with the most widely felt repercussions to your WDW vacation. Read everything you have time to. Reading this blog is very helpful, and you can check out some guidebooks at your local library or book store. Reading the Walt Disney World site and Parks Blog is also very helpful. If you know what to expect you can plan for it and you won’t have major disappointments ahead.

About Cassie

Cassie L. I am a lifelong Disney fan. I attended Walt Disney World in 1971, and was there during the opening week of EPCOT, and have visited the Disney Parks for than 30 times. I have had the privilege of visiting Disneyland as a child, and then again with my children. My family recently moved from the northeastern United States to the Walt Disney World area. I now have cast members in my family and enjoy hearing the magical stories at the end of a shift. I love visiting all of the parks and getting to try more Disney food and being able to share it with you to help you plan your own magical day at Disney.