PlanningThe ParksTips

Decisions That Can Make or Break Your Disney Trip

When getting ready for a Walt Disney World vacation, taking time to make the big decisions is easy. Researching where to stay, what to eat, and how to tour the Parks are all significant parts of the planning process.

Even though these decisions will impact your overall vacation experience, there is some minor decision that can also have a significant impact. We have a few things that will make a big difference on your Walt Disney World vacation, and you might only think about them once it is too late. We hope to bring these crucial factors up so you will be more prepared and have an even better Walt Disney World vacation.

Credit: Disney

Plan A Resort Day

Going to a Disney Park every day of your Disney vacation can be tempting. An excellent way to slow down is to build in a non-Park day. It can be hard to do when you want to be riding rides, watching fireworks, and being in the Parks; however, there is so much magic to experience outside the Parks.

We highly recommend scheduling a refresh and recharge day midway through your vacation. This can allow you to experience the magic outside of the Disney Parks and even find time to relax.

The Walt Disney World Resorts have fabulous pools and fun daily activities. Take time to head to the swimming pool and enjoy the activities such as trivia and chill. Consider sleeping in and having a late breakfast at one of the excellent table service locations throughout Disney Resorts. We love Ohana, Grand Floridian Cafe, and, if you are up for a party, Chef Mickey’s.

You can explore the mini-golf courses, shop at Disney Springs, and wrap up the evening with a movie under the stars at your Disney Resort.

You are setting up a smoother overall vacation by taking time away from the Disney Parks for the day. Fewer meltdowns happen when everyone is refreshed.

Credit: Disney

Sleep Is Important

Another significant decision that can significantly impact a Disney vacation is needing more sleep. It is easy to keep pushing everyone during the vacation. Trying to be at the Parks each morning for rope drop and then staying through the fireworks each evening is always the best decision.

By scheduling too much, you can cause everyone to get worn down. This can cause significant meltdowns and even have people to get sick. We agree that getting to the Parks early is essential, but take some mornings to ensure everyone gets the sleep they need to be fresh and ready.

As you make your daily plans for the Parks, think about how your overall days are lining up. If you plan on being out late for fireworks, think about sleeping in the following day. When traveling with little ones that still nap, make sure that you schedule around those naps as well.

Even if you don’t want to head back to the Resort for a nap, slow down and relax in the Parks during your normal nap time. Don’t schedule dining reservations or Genie+ return times for those peak nap times. This can result in little ones melting down.

The excitement of Walt Disney World will want to push you to keep going, but eventually, everyone will crash. Be proactive by ensuring everyone gets good sleep during your vacation.


Find Health Foods

Even though we love being to eat all the Mickey Bars and popcorn we want during our Disney vacation, the reality is that tummy aches and meltdowns can happen if we aren’t getting enough nutrition throughout the day.

Try to sneak in some healthy options between those dole whips to ensure everyone has the fuel to keep going. Disney has done a great job adding more fruits and vegetables to the menu, but also think about having some delivered to your Disney Resort. Having some grapes or bananas on hand can be a great way to help everyone and their tummies stay happy.

bottled water
Credit: Amazon

Drink All the Water

Just as crucial as getting healthy foods during a Disney trip is ensuring you stay hydrated. The combination of walking, heat, and humidity at Walt Disney World means we need even more water.

Bring your water bottles from home to refill them throughout the Parks. Many quick service locations will offer free ice water as well. Keep the family hydrated to prevent meltdowns and dehydration during your vacation.

Family at Animal Kingdom
Credit: Disney

Adjust and Be Flexible

A vital part of a successful Walt Disney World vacation is flexibility. Be aware that someone is getting tired, dehydrated, or hungry, and allow yourself time to step back and evaluate your plans. Pushing everyone to do a meal or a ride when they aren’t feeling up to it won’t be magical for anyone. Instead, be willing to adjust the plans.

f you need to reschedule a reservation because someone can’t do a sit-down meal, be okay with that. Consider pushing it to later in your trip or enjoy one of the excellent quick-service locations instead. The most important part of a Walt Disney World vacation is the magical memories you make with those you love. If you are pushing them to the point they are miserable, those memories aren’t going to be as magical.

As we plan our Disney vacations, we take time to plan out the big decisions. Those are important to a successful trip, but so are some of these more minor decisions we make throughout our vacations. Don’t forget to take care of basic needs such as hydration, nutrition, and rest during your Disney vacation. These have a significant impact on your trip as well.

Jennifer Retzlaff

Jennifer became a lifelong Disney fan during her first trip to Walt Disney World in 6th grade. From that moment, Disney became a big part of her life. She quickly started to introduce her love of Disney to her family with a Disney honeymoon and then family trips when her youngest was 18 months old. She loves the magic that Disney brings to people through theme parks, cruises, and adventures. As a teacher, she tries to bring Disney magic into her classroom to help kids believe that “If You Can Dream It, You Can Do It.” She is also part of the Magic Vacation Planner team as a personal travel advisor. With this team, she can now help others plan magical vacations. She loves bringing her love to Disney to readers with How to Disney.

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