Top 10 Tips & Tricks: To Enjoying Your WDW Vacation
When you travel to Walt Disney World as often as we do, you start gathering some essential tips and tricks to getting the most out of your WDW vacation. Below I have gathered my top 10 tips for the best trip ever!
1. Have fun!
Don’t try to do everything in this one trip. There is a lot to do. (Seriously… a lot.) Pick your top five things to do each day and make it your priority to get those five things done… anything extra is just icing on the cake! Anything you didn’t get to this trip, you can put on the list for your next trip.
Whether those priorities are dining reservations, rides, experiences — Pick 5 things each day that are must do’s and prioritize those things. Don’t forget: The early bird gets the worm. This is definitely true at WDW. If you don’t have a fast pass for a ride, getting to the park early and “rope dropping” the ride will give you the best chance of riding that ride!
2. Take Breaks!
Don’t forget to stop and enjoy a Mickey bar in the shade between activities, especially if you have kids! It will help prevent low blood sugar and meltdowns. Really, ice cream is good for everyone. (There are some great dairy free options too if that’s a concern!)
So, all ice cream aside, definitely take breaks. Getting through a day at WDW is more like a marathon than a sprint. You might “sprint” to get ready to rope drop a favorite ride, but getting through the whole day with everyone in a good mood requires taking necessary breaks. Some of my favorite memories are from multi-generational trips. With all those different ages, going at each person’s pace is a must. Grandparents may prefer to take a break in the middle of the day and get a nap before coming back and joining everyone for the fireworks. We found that our little ones would be too energized for naps in the afternoon, so we would just wheel them around in the stroller until they fell asleep.
3. Stay Hydrated!
Trust me, no one wants to have to miss out on any fun by getting dehydrated! I highly recommend collapsible water bottles and electrolyte packets. (I use Platypus style bottles and Emergen-C packets, plus, the boost of immune support is always a good idea!)
4. Eat Smart!
Did you know that you don’t have a redeem a quick service meal for each person at a quick service restaurant? If the kids aren’t particularly hungry, you can redeem one kids credit for them to share, or let one of them eat off your plate and save the other credit for another as a snack later on the trip!
If you are on the dining plan, order the most expensive thing on the menu! You’ve already paid for it! All meals now include the option for an alcoholic beverage for those guests that are over the age of 21. For anyone else, there are some really fun and delicious non-alcoholic options for drinks as well! I’m a big fan of sparkling water, there are a lot of fun options that mix different flavors with sparkling water for a light refreshing beverage with your meal!
Don’t forget, tips are not included with the dining plan. Most every meal will require gratuity, so go ahead and budget and plan that for all meals.
If anyone in your party has dietary restrictions, don’t forget, there is a chef at every restaurant that is specially trained in accommodating dietary needs, and will come out and meet with you and go over what may have cross-contamination for you.
5. Magic Bands!
Your Magic Bands will be your key to all the magic! Your room key, park admission, Fast Passes, and adults even have the option to
If you want to charge expenses to your room and pay with a gift card, make sure to stop by the guest services desk each night before you turn in to pay off the balance with the gift cards!
Also, if you have purchased anything at the parks and don’t want to carry it all day, you can have it delivered to your resort (as long as it’s 48 hours before check out) or to the front of the park to be picked up on your way out. Things can also be shipped home with applicable shipping charges!
Don’t forget, you have the option to upgrade to a Premium Magic Band for a discounted price if you have booked a WDW resort package.
6. Pack light
There is a balance between being prepared and having too much, keep your park bag to the basics. Trust me, your back will thank you!
Inside of your bag, use zip top bags to store rain gear, autograph books, etc. It helps keep everything together and dry in a downpour!
7. Fast Passes/Rider Swap
Make sure to utilize your fast passes and rider swap (for children under minimum heights) for rides!
Fast Passes are linked to your My Disney Experience or park ticket, look for the special Fast Pass entrances. All you have to do is get in the Fast Pass entrance and scan your Magic Band at the return time!
If you have a child that is under the minimum height for a ride, bring the whole family to the entrance of the ride and ask for a Rider Swap pass. They will direct you where to go next!
8. Memory Maker
Want to make sure everyone is in the picture? Pre-purchase your memory maker up to 72 hours before check in for the special pre-purchase price of $169. Within 72 hours of check in, the price jumps to $199. You can do this right in your My Disney Experience app! Click “Buy Memory Maker.”
9. Enjoy the Disney Magic!
There will be lots of new sights, smells, and sounds. Look for hidden Mickeys, use your nose and follow the special smells, stop and watch the parades… There is Disney Magic all around. Be sure to slow down and take it all in. Look at the details. Let your Disney side show and have a GREAT TIME!!!