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6 Things You Need to Know to Plan a Successful Trip to Walt Disney World, Florida

Updated on May 20, 2014
velzipmur profile image

Shelly loves writing, reading, history, family, dogs, cats and travel. This self published author also loves to learn and share.

6 Things You Need to Know

Are you planning a trip to Walt Disney World or thinking of planning one? If so, here are some things that I have found and things that I would like to share with you. These are things that need to be considered when planning a stress free trip for you and your family.

Getting There/How to

How will you travel to Walt Disney World? There are several ways that you can get there, one way is by car.


There are pros and cons to driving.


Pros

• Cheaper, depending on where you are driving from.

• You have your car when you arrive ~ can get around on your own

• This gives you the ability to travel at your own pace.


Cons

• Takes longer to get there.

• Can be stressful, depending on traffic and how you feel about riding/driving

• You have limited time

• Tolls/parking fees at WDW

• Gas

• Pit stops for food and gas


Travel by Train


Pros

• Restful

• No worries about driving

• Comfortable

• Can be scenic

• No airport delays

• You can find transportation to take you directly to the parks or to your accommodations.


Cons

• Can be costly

• No car when you arrive

• Takes a while to reach destination


Travel by Plane


Pros

• Quick travel

• Great for people that have limited time

• Great for people that do not want the hassle of driving


Cons

• Can be costly

• Can be uncomfortable

• No car when you arrive.

• Airport delays

• The hassle of airport security


There are so many ways to travel, you can take a train that will also bring your car along, but the money involved is a little much. In my opinion, you don’t really need your car with all the options that Walt Disney offers for getting around.


Getting around once you are there.


When you travel by plane and stay at a Walt Disney World Resort, WDW offers free shuttle services to and from the airport, so that helps to eliminate some travel issues. If you travel to Orlando by plane, and are staying at a WDW Resort you can call Disney and schedule a trip to your accommodations by the Magical Express ~ for free.


Where to Stay


You have a great selection of places to choose from. I recommend staying on WDW property if you can. This enhances the experience for you and your family.


Walt Disney offers a great selection of places to stay ranging from the more affordable economy hotels to the more expensive accommodations.


The economy resorts are the All-Stars. This is the All Star Movies, All Stars Sports, All Star Movies and the Art of Animation, along with a newer one called All Star Pop Century.


These are nice accommodations that provide the Disney experience at an affordable rate. One thing that you must keep in mind is the time of year. Depending on what time of year you are going to travel the cost fluctuates. The more popular times are, of course, more expensive. These rooms run from just under one hundred dollars and up.


The more expensive resorts can run upwards of 5 to 8 hundred dollars a night and possibly more. The best thing for you to do when selecting a resort is to understand your budget and check out the prices online to help choose the resort for you and your family.


Tickets


Disney tickets can be a very expensive investment in your vacation. It may very well be the most expensive investment depending on where you choose to stay and how much you save on airline tickets. The one thing that you should know about the park tickets is this: they are cheaper per day when you add more days. For example, if you purchase a 4 day ticket for 311 dollars (including tax) you can add a day for just an additional 13 dollars.


This is the way the tickets work, with each day added the cost per day goes down. However, consider this from Walt Disney Worlds point of view, the more time you spend there the more money you will spend on food and others items. So, it is a win-win situation for them.


The season passes for WDW are around 650 dollars each including tax, but this is just for the theme parks this does not include the water parks. There is a great deal to consider when choosing the tickets for your trip. You must decide what you can afford and what you want to see and do while you are there.


Food

Walt Disney World has an excellent selection of good options. You can choose from the “fast” food counter service to the sit down meal. They also offer a meal plan for you and your family, if you are staying at their resorts. These meal plans are great if you want everything wrapped up in a bow for you and paid for in advance, but if you are one a budget you might want to rethink this option.


I feel that the meal plan is an expensive luxury for some, but a deal for others. It just depends on what you want, what you can and are willing to pay. There are different meal plans to consider, and they vary in price.


In Magic Kingdom, I have eaten in the Pecos Bill Saloon and Café, the Crystal Palace, Casey’s Hotdog, and I love every one of them for various reasons. You will not find bad food in WDW, of course this is my opinion and everyone has one.


Pecos Bills is a counter service restaurant. They offer burgers, salads, chicken and more. I have always enjoyed the burgers here, they also provide a fixing’s bar and a selection of children’s meals.


The Crystal Palace is a self serve buffet, filled with delightful and tasty foods. Here you will be able to enjoy a sit down meal and visits from certain Disney characters.


Of course, Casey’s Hot Dogs is just what it says, hot dog place. It is a counter service as well, with some of the most delicious hot dogs in Disney. Of course, this could just be because it is located in Magic Kingdom.


EPCOT offers a variety of food choices from all around the world. I have eaten at Le’Cellar, located in the Canadian area of EPCOT. They serve a great steak!


The Coral Reef is also located in EPCOT and serves great seafood and other dishes. If you wish to eat in either one of these restaurants you should make reservations ahead of time.


I have eaten in a variety of counter service restaurants in EPCOT and have enjoyed them all. The one that I like the most is located in The Land. When you walk into The Land you will look down over the pavilion and see a nice food court. We have eaten there many times, they have sandwiches, Chinese, and so much more including desserts to choose from.


Hollywood Studios offers Pizza Planet, and many other counter service restaurants all with great food. We have eaten at Hollywood and Vine; this is a buffet restaurant with excellent food. Here you can have breakfast or lunch with the Disney Junior Characters or you can enjoy dinner and get preferred seating at the Fantasmic Show.


Animal Kingdom also has great counter service restaurants, but I love eating at the Rainforest Café located at the entrance of Animal Kingdom. Please keep in mind that if you want to eat at a full service restaurant like the Rainforest Café you should make reservations.


What is the Best Time to Go?


This is a great question and it seems that everyone wants the answer. So, when is the best time to travel to Walt Disney World? First of all I would avoid all holidays as they tend to be very busy times and the cost of the rooms go up around those times.


I travel to Walt Disney World, Florida at least once a year, and I have been at various times. The best times that I have found are just after Labor Day through to the week of Thanksgiving, January 3rd through the first week of February and then the month of May. Once the kids are out of school things get crazy, not to mention the weather is HOT.


One thing about January, however, it can be cold and there are many travelers from South America during that month. The reason for that is South America is experiencing their summer during our winter months.


This article is written with my experiences in mind. I have been traveling to Orlando to visit Walt Disney World for over 25 years and what I have provided to you has been what I have experienced. I hope that his has been helpful to you in planning your trip.


velzipmur a.k.a. Shelly Wyatt

Photos of Magic Kingdom

Click thumbnail to view full-size
Space Mountain, Magic KingdomMagic KingdomMagic KingdomNew Fantasyland in Magic KingdomMagic KingdomMagic KingdomCinderella Castle, Magic Kingdom
Space Mountain, Magic Kingdom
Space Mountain, Magic Kingdom | Source
Magic Kingdom
Magic Kingdom | Source
Magic Kingdom
Magic Kingdom | Source
New Fantasyland in Magic Kingdom
New Fantasyland in Magic Kingdom | Source
Magic Kingdom
Magic Kingdom | Source
Magic Kingdom
Magic Kingdom | Source
Cinderella Castle, Magic Kingdom
Cinderella Castle, Magic Kingdom | Source

Magic Kingdom

In Magic Kingdom you can become a child again, you can see the world through the magic of Disney, leaving your cares behind if only for a day or a week.

I have found the key to a stress free Disney vacation is planning, so that you don't have to worry over the details and WDW makes this easy for you.

Walt Disney World Orlando, Florida

A
Walt Disney World Orlando, Florida:
Walt Disney World Monorail, Orlando, FL 32821, USA

get directions

Walt Disney World Orlando, Florida

How many times have you visited WDW in Florida?

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EPCOT

EPCOT stands for environmental prototype city of tomorrow. This is the way that Walt Disney envisioned the future, how close do you think he came to getting it right?

EPCOT is a very fun and educational park for all to enjoy, there are a variety to things to see and do. This is my personal favorite of the four Disney parks in Florida.

Planning a successful Walt Disney World Trip

Plan your meals
Plan you day
what is the most important thing not to miss
will you dine at a counter service restaurant
what shows will you see
Fantasmic
will you dine at a full service restaurant
what time do the shows start
Parades
will you purchase the dining plan
will you go back to the hotel for a nap
what rides are a must ride to your family
Having a great time is all about the planning.

Photos of EPCOT

Click thumbnail to view full-size
EPCOTEPCOTEPCOTEPCOTEPCOTEPCOTCanadian Pavilion EPCOTLightning McQueen, EPCOTTow mater EPCOTEPCOT
EPCOT
EPCOT | Source
EPCOT
EPCOT | Source
EPCOT
EPCOT | Source
EPCOT
EPCOT | Source
EPCOT
EPCOT | Source
EPCOT
EPCOT | Source
Canadian Pavilion EPCOT
Canadian Pavilion EPCOT | Source
Lightning McQueen, EPCOT
Lightning McQueen, EPCOT | Source
Tow mater EPCOT
Tow mater EPCOT | Source
EPCOT
EPCOT | Source

Hollywood Studios

Hollywood Studios is a fun park, to be honest it took me awhile to warm up to it because I was so attached to Magic Kingdom and EPCOT. However, once I did I fell in love with the park.

My favorite ride is, well I have two of them, Tower of Terror and Rockin' Roller Coaster. I make sure that I have a fast pass to ride both of these when I visit.

Photos of Hollywood Studios and Animal Kingdom

Click thumbnail to view full-size
Hollywood StudiosHollywood StudiosHollywood StudiosTower of Terror, Hollywood StudiosEntrance to Animal KingdomAnimal Kingdom
Hollywood Studios
Hollywood Studios | Source
Hollywood Studios
Hollywood Studios | Source
Hollywood Studios
Hollywood Studios | Source
Tower of Terror, Hollywood Studios
Tower of Terror, Hollywood Studios | Source
Entrance to Animal Kingdom
Entrance to Animal Kingdom | Source
Animal Kingdom
Animal Kingdom | Source

EPCOT Fountain

EPCOT Fountain
EPCOT Fountain | Source
Magic Kingdom, Thunder Mountain
Magic Kingdom, Thunder Mountain | Source

Animal Kingdom

This the fourth park to be added to the Walt Disney World family, and honestly I had my doubts about this one. However, Disney did it right once again.

I love the safari ride and the two outstanding walk through zoos they have created. When visiting Animal Kingdom take your time and enjoy the beauty of this park.

My favorite rides here are Dinosaur, and Expedition Everest.

Magic Kingdom

Magic Kingdom Orlando, Florida
Magic Kingdom Orlando, Florida | Source

Mexico ride in EPCOT

© 2014 Shelly Wyatt

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