PlanningThe ParksTips

Rookie Mistakes You Don’t Want to Make in Disney

If you are heading to Walt Disney World for your very first time you don’t want to make these rookie mistakes.  Prepare like a pro by being aware of these mistakes that you want to avoid.

Christmas Party
Credit: Disney

Check the Calendar

A mistake that a lot of rookies make is not checking the crowd calendar before booking their trip.  Although a lot know that holidays and spring break will be busy, they often don’t take time to double-check other times that might bring larger crowds to Walt Disney World.

We have a whole post HERE about dates that you should get your Park Passes for in 2022 before they fill up.  Think about three-day weekends such as Memorial Day or Labor Day or in the fall, a lot of schools take a fall break in October.

runDisney events also bring larger than normal crowds so make sure you are aware of this when booking your Walt Disney World vacations.  If you can only go during busier times, you can check out our tips and tricks on how to avoid crowds HERE.

Poly vs CSR
Credit: Disney

Picking the Wrong Resort

There are a lot of Resorts to choose from when it comes to staying at Walt Disney World.  Don’t make the mistake of choosing the wrong one for your family.

We have a breakdown of the three Resort categories at Disney (value, moderate, deluxe) HERE to help you determine which category might work the best for you.

Even after you determine what category will be the best fit, make sure you still dive into the specific Resorts within the category to determine which one will be the best.  Check out our top questions to ask yourself before booking your Resort HERE.

All of the Walt Disney World Resorts are amazing; however, that doesn’t mean that they are all the perfect fit for everyone.  Think about big things like swimming and transportation as well as dining to make sure you find the best Resort for you.

Credit: Inside the Magic

Consider the Weather

We would love it if Walt Disney World was in a magical bubble where it was always sunny and in the 70s, but that isn’t a reality.  Don’t make the rookie mistake of not preparing for the weather when heading to Walt Disney World.

Most are aware that it is hot and humid in Disney during the summer, but that summer heat continues throughout September and sometimes even October.  If you are heading down for Christmas and the New Year, know that it can get cold.  Making sure you have layers and even mittens and coats are important.

And as always, make sure you are prepared for rain.  It rains throughout the year in Florida and you will want to have those items to help you face the rain successfully.  We have suggestions HERE as to what that will look like.

Save yourself time, money, and stress by being prepared for the weather.

Steakhouse 71- Paula Kennedy
credit: Paula Kennedy

Not Planning for Food

When it comes to eating in Walt Disney World there is no more grabbing something quick.  As the crowds have increased, table-service locations have very limited walk-up availability meaning that reservations should be made prior to your vacation.

Don’t make the rookie mistake of showing up at Walt Disney World and hoping you can just walk up and snag a dining location at Cinderella’s Royal Table in Magic Kingdom or Space 220 in EPCOT.  Sit-down dining locations are filling up quickly so make sure you plan ahead to get what you are wanting before your vacation.

If you aren’t going to do any sit-down meals, you still need to have a plan when it comes to food.  Most quick-service locations are recommending using mobile ordering through the My Disney Experience app.  Because of this, you will want to make sure you know how to use mobile ordering before you arrive at Walt Disney World and make sure that when you are in the Parks you make your mobile orders early in the day to ensure you get what you want.

Make sure you don’t end up hangry while in Walt Disney World by having a plan for food no matter what type of dining experiences you are going to do.

crowds- Disney Tips
Credit: crowds- Disney Tips

Over Planning

We highly recommend having a plan when it comes to your Walt Disney World vacation; however, a big rookie mistake that many make is to over plan.  A lot of time rookies will have a plan for every minute of every day.

Not only is this impossible to maintain, but it also takes the magic out of the vacation.  If you have so much planned, there won’t be any room for those special, magical moments that pop up throughout a vacation.

Take time to have your must-dos scheduled and thought through, but then leave time for relaxing, fun, and magic along the way.


Under Planning

On the flip side, some rookies show up without a plan at all.  Although there used to be a time where Guests could do this, 2022 isn’t that time.  There is a lot of planning such as Park Passes and dining that needs to be done ahead of time.

When you arrive at the Parks, you want to make sure to have those must-dos planned out so you are ready to get started on your day.  By having a general plan, you will be able to use your time wisely inline the Park while having some time for magic along the way.

Credit: Disney

Know the Extras

As you prepare for your Walt Disney World vacation, make sure that you are aware of the extras that are available to you.  A lot of times rookies show up and aren’t aware of all the extras that can be added to their vacation or add some extra magic or even extras that come along with staying at a Walt Disney World Resort

If you are staying at a Walt Disney World Resort, make sure you know about early entry and extended evening hours that are available.  These are great ways to get into the Parks with lower wait times.

There are a variety of extras that you can add to your trips such as Genie+, firework dessert parties, and other magical experiences.  Learn about these options to see if they are something that your family would be interested in participating in.

My Disney Experience App

My Disney Experience

A big rookie mistake is not having My Disney Experience downloaded prior to your vacation and not looking it over before your trip.  MDE is so important to a successful Walt Disney World vacation so being familiar with it is important.

We have a few posts on MDE so make sure you check those out to become familiar with all that the app has to offer and then take some time before your trip to practice.  Doing this before you leave will make the app less frustrating when you arrive at Walt Disney World.

Credit :Disney

Trying To Do It All

The final mistake that rookies make is trying to do it all.  With four theme parks, two water parks, Disney Spring, and over 20+ Resorts, no matter how long your vacation is you won’t be able to do it all.

Those that go in with a schedule that keeps them busy from sun up to sun down end up worn down and miss out on the magic.  Don’t try to do everything but instead focus once again on those must-do experiences.  By focusing on the handful of must-dos you can leave room for relaxing and magical experiences that pop up along the way.

These are some of the big mistakes that rookies make when planning a trip to Walt Disney World.  Avoid these mistakes so you can have a magical vacation.

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.

Related Articles


Adblock Detected

Please consider supporting us by disabling your ad blocker