Hakuna Matata, it means no worries! And, no worries are what you should have on your first Disney vacation. Going to Disney World for your first time can be very overwhelming and stressful, if you go without a plan.
Here are my top 5 tips for conquering your first visit to Disney:
- Stay at a Disney Resort
Staying at a Disney resort can sometimes run a little extra than staying off property, but it is worth it for many reasons. When staying on Disney property, you have complimentary transportation to and from the airport and parks, quick access to the parks on the monorail, boats and buses, Extra Magic hours which allows for extended park time, early access to Fast Pass+ planning and renowned Disney service. There are several types of Disney resorts from value to deluxe to meet each family’s budget. No matter which resort you choose, I promise you will be immersed in Disney and your trip will be unforgettable.
- Avoid the busy seasons
Anytime there is a school break- summer, spring break, winter break- Disney parks are bound to be busy. This results in long lines and crowds making for a not so magical first time experience. Utilize online crowd calendars to determine when the parks have a history of having the least crowds. This is usually when Disney offers some great deals- room & dining discounts! Trust me, you will save money and a headache.
- Plan ahead
Plan, Plan, Plan! I can’t say it enough. Be sure to book your trip at least 180 days in advanced because this is when dining reservations will open. YES! Dining reservations need to be made 6 months in advanced otherwise you risk not being able to get in to your “must eat” places, such as Cinderella’s Royal Table, La Cellier and Chef Mickey’s, just to name a few. If you do miss the 180 day mark, keep checking back for cancellations.
60 days prior to your trip (for guest staying on Disney property) you are able to make your Fast Pass+ selections (30 days if staying off property). If you want to meet Elsa and Anna, ride the Seven Dwarfs Mine Train or take aim at Toy Story Midway Mania, without a 2 hour + wait, you NEED a Fast Pass.
- Take a break
This one is especially important if you are going to Disney with young children. Pushing kids to do too much can result in cranky kids and unhappy parents! Head back to your resort and go to the pool (pools are usually not as crowded midday), take a nap, or if you are limited on time, find one of the many resting areas throughout the theme parks. Believe me, sometimes a break is the best thing you can do for your family and your vacation.
- Don’t Stress
Disney is HUGE. And I know as mom this is easier said than done, but remember there is so much to see and do that you will never get it all done in your first visit (or your second, third or tenth). That is part of the magic- each trip to Disney is completely different. Make a list of the things you must do. After you accomplish those, if there is time for more, go ahead and do it, if not you have something to look forward to for your next trip.
Extra Magic Tip! Use an Authorized Disney Vacation Planner like MickeyTravels. Our services include monitoring for discounts, making your dining reservations, booking your Fast Pass+, custom itineraries and extra pixie dust to make your vacation special! Best of all, ALL of our services are 100% FREE. Contact me today for a free quote at firstname.lastname@example.org or visit me on Facebook.