When you’re planning a Walt Disney World vacation, you cannot possibly know everything.
Don’t worry, though! Mickey Blog is here to help!
Our staff has spent more time at Disney than at family dinners! We know all sorts of pro tips to help you experience the vacation of your dreams.
Here are seven life hacks for your Disney vacation.
Pick Rides, Not Breakfast
Here’s one that may go against everything you believe in. Yes, breakfast is the most important meal of the day.
You may believe you need to fuel up extra at Disney to account for all the walking you’re about to do.
Here’s the thing, though. You’ll snack a lot more than usual at Disney. The aromatic scents of the various goodies here will overwhelm your senses.
You will give in to temptation at times. So, breakfast becomes less critical. Grab something quick, and then head to the parks instead!
Early in the morning, Disney is less crowded than at any point before dark.
You can accomplish a lot before the lunchtime crowd arrives. It’ll come at the expense of a hearty breakfast, though.
Learn My Disney Experience
The My Disney Experience app on your phone won’t save your life, but it’ll feel that way at times.
With this program, you can find the most direct path to a Disney attraction or restaurant.
You can also locate a bathroom near you, and I promise that WILL come in handy at times.
This app also offers Mobile Ordering. You’ll use this service to choose your meals at Disney Quick Service restaurants.
You can order, customize your food, and pay from within the My Disney Experience app.
As such, this program can be your best friend at Disney…well, second-best friend. We’ll discuss your BFF in the final section.
Spend Downtime Strategizing
You’ll have plenty of time at Disney where you’re not really doing anything.
I’m talking about those times when you’re riding Disney transportation or standing in line at rides.
Now, I preface this statement by pointing out that Disney line queues feature stellar theming.
So, you may want to spend part of your time appreciating the many touches that make your favorite attractions even better.
Realistically, I know that most people will just break out their phones and check texts and social media, though.
If you’re going to do that, you might as well utilize your time effectively. Plan the next thing by checking wait times at other attractions!
Also, remember that you can make a Mobile Order at a Disney restaurant. The chef won’t start cooking the meal until you signal that you’re ready.
Ergo, you can order while you’re standing in line. Then, after you exit the attraction, you will notify the restaurant when you’re in the area and ready to eat.
You’ll enjoy a more efficient and productive trip by taking this approach to your Disney downtime.
Play in the Rain
At a young age, our adult role models teach us not to stay out in the rain. We’ll catch a cold, right?
Well, at Disney, flash rainstorms are a thing. So if you spend five days at the park and don’t suffer through at least one rain shower, you will have done something mathematically improbable.
Don’t let the rain bother you, though! You’ll notice plenty of other guests who shut down the instant they feel raindrops. They’re rookies!
The veterans recognize rain as an opportunity. So while others are buying umbrellas and rain sellers at mark-up prices, you should get in line!
Specifically, you should target all the rides you know won’t shut down due to rain.
Generally, indoor rides remain open during inclement weather. Some of the savviest options are ones like Peter Pan’s Flight and Haunted Mansion.
I’m talking about rides that require at least some waiting in line outdoors. People shy away from these places because they don’t want to get wet.
As long as you have remembered to pack an umbrella or rain slicker, you won’t care! You’ll stay dry and experience a shorter wait time, too!
Choose a Character Meal
At some point during your Disney visit, you need to experience a character meal.
Now, I should warn you that these restaurants book quickly. As such, you’ll want to choose a few options and then book an Advanced Dining Reservation.
Disney opens the booking window 60 days before the start of your trip. If you don’t try first thing when your window opens, you’ll probably find the best places booked.
I would recommend a place like Chef Mickey’s or Hollywood & Vine. These restaurants feature Mickey & Minnie Mouse along with their friends.
Foodies should consider Tusker House or Story Book Dining at Artist Point with Snow White.
Whatever you pick, you’ll relish the opportunity to interact with your favorite Disney characters. They may even come straight to your table and say hi!
Character symbolize the best of meals on a Disney vacation. Therefore, you owe it to yourself to schedule at least one character dining experience during your visit!
Watch the Wait Times
Here’s one of those tips that nobody will tell you about Disney theme parks. They cheat.
What I mean by that is that park officials guide guests toward specific attractions. Disney needs a relatively even traffic flow across all rides.
To achieve that goal, management often lists wait times that exaggerate the current situation.
The posted time may indicate 45 minutes when it’s really closer to 25 minutes.
For this reason, you should read MickeyBlog’s weekly wait times to familiarize yourself with the process.
You’ll be able to tell which posted wait times appear wildly unlikely, which should help you find a bargain or two.
Use Disney Genie
Okay, you may have heard that Disney Genie costs extra. Of course, that’s not true, but the confusion is understandable.
The parks sell a service called Disney Genie+ that will allow you to enter the shorter line queues at many Disney attractions.
However, Disney Genie is a free virtual assistant akin to Siri or Alexa. This app knows everything about the various Disney parks.
Disney Genie shows attraction wait times and estimates for when crowds will be shortest throughout the day. And that’s just the tip of the iceberg.
This app knows and sees all. As such, you can safely rely on its expertise to guide you through your entire vacation.
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Photo: Disney Parks