Last February 27 I went to Disney for my friend Elisenda’s birthday. Months before we had that idea probably I would though that was impossible, the truth is that it is so easy that we planned the trip in 3 weeks, but there are certain information that I didn’t researched because of the time.
So for that reason today I’m going to show you things that things I wish I knew before my trip to Disney.
1. Book 2 days extra on the hotel
One of my biggest mistakes was booking a hotel the same nights that I had for the parks. First, because the day you arrive Orlando (in an airplane or a road trip) you lose so much time on the bus, doing the check-in, keeping your bags in the room, eating something. So I consider necessary the first day to get ready and take advantage of the full day on the parks the next day.
The second day on the hotel is for the end of your trip, I consider necessary an extra day to rest (because trust me you are going to be very tired) and pack quietly before catching a plane again.
2. Stay on a Disney hotel
There are a lot of benefits on staying on a Disney hotel, one of them is the free transportation, extra magic hours ( I will explain those two later) and a free magic band, that allows you to open your hotel room, enter to the parks without using a ticket and pay for food on the parks without credit cards.
If you stay at a Disney hotel, you can get free transportation from the airport to the hotel, and from the hotel to the parks. Disney Magical Express busses make a few stops, so you probably will not go directly to your resort.
For transportation from the airport to the hotel, you need to have your flight number, so make sure you have that information when you are booking your Disney package. From the hotel to the parks, you can take the bus on a stop in front of the door where you are staying that arrives every 20–30 minutes.
4. Expenses per day
You are going to spend at least 15 dollars on food in the parks. So if you are going to have the 3 meals there, you have to bring with you a minimum of 45 dollars per day. I recommend you to search for the restaurant before the trip so you don’t waste time in the park choosing a place to eat.
Something important I didn’t know is that the water is free, so you can ask for a glass of water on any restaurant or drink water from any drinker around the park.
5. Download the app before the trip
On this app you can view park hours and it has a map where you can find all the attractions that you wanted to go to and the waiting line. Also with the app you can buy tickets, reserve dining and FastPass, view your park photos, and many other useful things.
6. Use fastpasses wisely
The FastPass is a pass where you make an appointment to ride an attraction skipping the standby line, every entrance has 3 Fastpass but you can buy more. I don’t want to tell you which attractions are worth using (because everyone has a different opinion about what they like) But to give you an idea, use the app and check which attractions have more waiting time.
People who stay at Disney hotels can secure these reservations 60 days before their trip and people who don’t stay at any hotel can do it 30 days before, you can do it online or on the app.
7. Extra magic hours
Extra Magic Hours are extra hours where guests staying in Disney hotels have exclusive entry into the parks before everyone else, you have to wake up early but it worth it because you can go to the attractions that are busiest if you didn’t get Fastpass for them.
8. Know the rules
There are many illegal things inside the parks, for example selfie sticks, weapons or tripods (for security). So make sure you don’t bring anything that could be a problem.
But don’t worry, snacks and plastics bottles are allowed.
9. You can’t get lose
There are maps in many languages and free wifi around the park, so you are going to be communicated.
10. All the shows have a schedule
If you have looked for information from Disney before, you will know that at any moment you are walking around the park, you can find a random show of characters dancing or singing. Those shows have a schedule, so if you don’t want to miss one, you can look for the itinerary on a stand.
Bonus: If you want to take the epic picture in front of the castle without any people in the back, you have to be there at 7:00 am, because from 8:00 am that place fills up with people until it closes.