Tips and Secrets for Surviving Your Walt Disney World Vacation
4 Tips for Surviving Your Walt Disney World Vacation
Going to Walt Disney World is, for some folks, that once in a lifetime trip that you spend a couple of years planning.
It's the dream trip that's going to thrill your kids and make them think you're the best parents ever. Frequently though, parents aren't prepared for how truly massive the Walt Disney World theme parks are and just how exhausting a vacation there can turn out to be.
In order to avoid your trip ending in misery, here's some of my best Disney World tips and tricks for Surviving your Disney vacation and enjoying your magical trip of a lifetime. You'll have lots of fun at WDW without any stress if you just keep these ideas in mind.
Disney's Pop Century Resort
1. Stay at a Disney Resort
If you can afford it, I think it is worth spending a little extra money to stay on property at the Disney resorts.
For some, the primary advantages are the extended morning and evening hours that are offered at a different park each day for Disney resort guests, but personally I think the real advantage of staying on site is the transportation system and being immersed in the Disney experience. If you're gonna experience Disney, go all the way!
Instead of worrying about renting a car, driving, following maps, parking and remembering where you parked, you can leave all of the driving to the Disney cast members because transportation within WDW is free to all resort guests.
With frequent bus services to each theme park from the resorts all day and return trips that run well after park closing, transportation is one less thing to worry about on your vacation. The advantages are even better now that Disney is providing free transport from the Orlando airport to the resorts.
You can take the money you are saving on car rental and put it towards the increased room costs.
Walt Disney World Vacation Guides
2. Spend Lunchtime back at your Hotel
The theme parks are best explored early mornings, late afternoons and early evenings. Depending on what time of year you travel, the hot Florida sun is at its worst in the middle of the day and while many of the rides in the parks are indoors, there's not a lot of outdoor shade available.
Instead of staying in miserable mid-day lines, take the time to head back to your hotel for a few hours. Enjoy an inexpensive lunch in your room, then put the kids down for a nap. Take a dip in the pool or watch some television. Just take a time-out to relax and get off your feet.
Best time to head back to the parks is after 3 p.m. You'll find many other visitors have already departed by then and you'll experience shorter waits for getting on attractions and a lot less crowding.
- How to Use Walt Disney World's Fastpass
My guide to using Fastpass at Disney World
3. Use Fastpass
Fastpass for the most popular theme park rides has been in operation at WDW for several years and yet so many guests don't take advantage of it that it amazes me. Fastpass is free for all Disney park guests and it means not spending an hour or two in line at the most popular rides.
The best way to use it is to take a look at your theme park guide and figure out what rides you want to go on the most, then grab Fastpasses for your favorite ride for each member of your party as soon as you enter the park. While waiting for your Fastpass time to arrive, you can go ahead and jump into line for other rides, sit down and have a meal or do a little shopping.
When your fastpass time rolls around, go ahead and get a fastpass for your second favorite ride before heading back to the first one. It isn't always feasible to use Fastpass for every ride for which it is availabe, but even using it once or twice a day will save you significant time in lines at the parks.
Favorite Disney Swag
- Disney Pins
My favorite Disney collectibles -- from WDW and Disneyland. Disney pins galore!
4. Relax and Enjoy yourself!
Remember that this is your vacation and you're supposed to be having fun! So when the kids get tired, leave the park for a few hours. Don't worry about seeing everything or getting onto every single ride.
Also, just accept the fact that your kids will be more impressed by the pool at the hotel than they will be with Mickey Mouse and you will be able to enjoy your Disney vacation without tears and/or arguments!
More WDW Tips
- Walt Disney World Resource Guide
My guide to the best websites for planning your Walt Disney World vacation
- Disney Vacation Club Timeshares
Interested in the Disney Vacation Club timeshare membership? Read all about the DVC at my hub.
- Walt Disney World Dining Plans and Discounts
My overview of the Disney dining plan and the Disney Dining Experience discount card.
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