PlanningThe ParksTips

Do NOT Make These Mistakes at Disney

Going to Walt Disney World is such an amazing experience. But there are a few things that you could do that would make it a miserable experience for everyone involved. Here is a list of nine things we think you should absolutely NOT do while at Disney.

MyDisneyExperiene logo
credit: Disney

Not use MyDisneyExperience

This is the biggest mistake you could make. Right now – take out your phone, go to your app store, and download MyDisneyExperience. Everything can be done from this app. Explore maps, review menus, see park and entertainment hours, etc. This is also where you would purchase Genie+ and LL – but that is a topic for another day.

Go without research

A Disney vacation is a BEAST. There is so much to cover and see. Going in with no research thinking you will just figure it out when you get there is one of the biggest mistakes you can make. Spend time picking a few must-dos for the whole family for each day. Make a rough outline of the trip and go with that. There is no need to have every minute planned (this is also a no no) but be at least a little familiar with the concepts of a Disney vacation.

Sit/stand on railings or trashcans

As you are walking through a ride queue, the railings are not there to be sat on. Be sure to keep both feet on the ground.

As a parent, it might be tempting to put your kid on top of a trash can to see the castle show or parade easier. But these trash cans are not at all stable or reliable for a human to use as a stool.

If you do either of these things, you will pretty quickly have a Cast Member come and politely ask you to get down. Save yourself from the lecture.

Magic Kingdom Cast Members in Fantasyland

Argue about kids’ heights with Cast Members

Safety is absolutely the highest priority for Disney employees. The attraction Cast Members are trained thoroughly and are extremely strict about the height requirements. Their decision is the final decision, and the last thing that will help you is arguing or yelling at them.

These employees barely make minimum wage, and an entire corporation is pressuring them to do all the right things. All they want is to do their job and make a little bit of magic. This isn’t their fault, and it would do you no good to blame them. If you have a problem or don’t degree with their decision, ask for a manager and take it up with them. But there is a good chance you won’t be winning that battle.

Shoes with good support

Wear flip flops

Guests walk a MINIMUM of seven miles per day on a Disney vacation. Flip-flops provide zero support, and with how busy the parks are these days can prove to be a safety hazard. Do yourself a favor and wear supportive shoes. Your feet, legs, and lower back will be grateful for you in the long run.

If you really want to wear sandals, try a pair of Tevas or Chakos. Both of those brands have sandals that strap to your foot fully and provide much more support. I honestly used to wear $3 Old Navy flip-flops to the park and I would wake up every night with a Charlie Horse.

Bottles of Dasani water

Not drink water

In my many years of being in the parks, a common denominator of all breakdowns are linked to dehydration and hunger. It is so easy to grab a soda or a coffee during the day and forget to hydrate. But avoiding the H2O can really kick you in the rear. Especially in the really hot summer months, be sure to drink a bottle of water per hour.

Another thing to note – the water you drink today is for tomorrow’s hydration. It is easy to get behind and it takes a while for your body to recover. Don’t ruin your Disney vacation simply because you didn’t want to drink water.

I like to have Nuun tablets or Liquid IV in my bag for some extra electrolytes. Those really help boost me!

Wheelchair Rental
Photo Credit: Disney World

Fake an injury to get a wheelchair or scooter

This is a MAJOR party foul. If you think you will get extra attention or get to wait in shorter lines because you are in a wheelchair, you are very wrong. Save the wheelchairs for people who actually need them.

Plus, Cast Members see thousands of Guests a day. It is likely they will be able to see right through the act.

Wait in line for food

One of the greatest things that have ever come from MyDisneyExperience is Mobile Ordering. The major quick-service restaurants offer this option. It is a fantastic way to save a TON of time. Order your food while you are in line for a ride, when you are about 5-7 minutes away from the restaurant select “I am here – prepare my food.” When you arrive, good chance your food is ready!

If you want to see if a restaurant you are interested in offers Mobile Ordering, simply search for it in the MyDisneyExperience app. It will say “Order Food” if you can order ahead.

Haunted Mansion
Credit: Disney Photo Snapper

Use flash photography on rides

Imagineers put so much heart and soul into every detail of these rides. Especially in the classic dark rides, some affects will be disrupted by light.

One of my biggest pet peeves is in the séance room of Haunted Mansion (with the floating ball). People want to take pictures and that is GREAT, but the flash on your camera ruins the effect and blinds everyone around you. Imagineers also take into account how long it takes for our eyes to adjust to the dark. So the further you go into a dark ride, the more the effects have adjusted. Don’t let your flash (or any lights for that matter) ruin it.

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