PlanningThe ParksTips

Lessons We Need to Share About Disney

There is a lot that goes into a Walt Disney World vacation and we have some big lessons that we have learned over the years that will help make your trip even more magical.

Some of these lessons might seem simple, but often when we are in the middle of the magic we forget.

We hope that by letting you know what lessons we learned over the years, you will be more prepared and ready for a magical trip to Walt Disney World.

Disney World Map

Plan Ahead

The first lesson that we have learned starts before we even leave for Walt Disney World and that is to plan ahead.  There are a lot of steps that go into a Walt Disney World vacation and in order to set yourself up for success during your trip, you will want to do some planning ahead of time.

The planning starts by making sure you have made your Park Pass Reservations.   Guests now need to have both valid Theme Park Tickets as well as Park Pass Reservations.

credit Disney

The Park Pass Reservations are made through the My Disney Experience account and allow Guests to select which of the four Disney Parks they are going to visit each day of their trip.

Having this done ahead of time is essential to planning as Guests are not allowed to enter a Disney Park without them.  As some Park Pass Reservations book up, you don’t want to arrive at Magic Kingdom and not be able to enter.

We also suggest having an overall touring plan in mind before arriving at Walt Disney World.  We know that not all people want to have an hour-by-hour plan, but knowing what your top must-do experiences are is going to be super helpful.

Take time to do a little research (we suggest How to Disney) to determine what rides, shows, and dining you might want to focus on in each Park.

Finally, plan ahead when it comes to transportation.   Disney is no longer offering Magical Express which means you will need to have a plan on how to get from the airport to your Walt Disney World Resort.   There are a variety of options from motor coaches to private transfers.  No matter what will work the best for your family, make sure you schedule this ahead of time.

Planning ahead is extremely important to a successful trip to Walt Disney World.  Taking time to do these steps is a big lesson we learned.

Walt Disney World Map
Credit: Disney

Walt Disney World is Big

Another lesson we have learned during our Walt Disney World vacations is that it is big.. like really big.  With four Theme Parks, 2 water parks, Disney Springs, and all the Resorts, Walt Disney World is truly a world of its own.

Because of how big it is, you will want to make sure you plan ahead and are prepared for how long it takes to get from place to place while you are in the magic.

Know that if you are heading to the Disney Parks from your Walt Disney World Resort, you will want to plan on 15-20 minutes.  Buses are supposed to run every 20 minutes to keep that in mind and check the My Disney Experience app to see when they are arriving at your Resort.

When planning on eating or visiting another Walt Disney World Resort, Disney recommends planning on an hour to 90 minutes if using Disney transportation.  Since there is no direct transportation between the Resorts, Guests have to head to the Theme Park first and then transfer to head to the Resort.  This can take a lot of time.

Finally,  when planning out your days in the Disney Parks, be aware of how large they are.  In the larger Parks like EPCOT and Magic Kingdom, you don’t want to be crisscrossing the Park all day.  This adds extra steps that aren’t needed and can be frustrating when trying to navigate the crowds.

Take time to look over a map so you can create a touring plan that has you focused on the same general areas to save time and steps.

My Disney Experience App

Use My Disney Experience

We have recently learned how important Disney’s app My Disney Experience is to a successful Walt Disney World vacation.  It is through this app that Guests will have access to wait times, book Genie+, make their mobile orders, and see their Memory Maker photos.

Because this app is so important, we have learned that it is a good idea to have it downloaded and play around with it prior to being in Walt Disney World. There are so many different features than waiting until you are on vacation to start navigating MDE can cause it to be extremely stressful.

We have some great posts on How to Disney about everything you can find on My Disney Experience and how to use it.  Take a look so you are ready.

credit: Disney Tips

You Walk a Lot

The final lesson we have learned over time is that we walk a lot in Walt Disney World.  It doesn’t matter how many times we visit, we are always surprised by how many miles we put on each day.

Since most of us don’t walk 8-11 miles per day, we have learned that we need to do some training at home before heading down.  Taking walks around the neighborhood really helps us get our bodies ready.  It also allows us to test out those walking shoes.

As we mentioned before, having a touring plan will also help you navigate the Parks without adding extra unnecessary steps throughout the day.

These are the big lessons we have learned at Walt Disney World.  We think if you take the time to learn ahead of time will help you have an even better trip.

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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