Walt Disney World has always been a destination for family vacations. It is a beautiful place where everyone from grandma and grandpa to the newborn can experience fun and magic together. When traveling with a large group, it can be hard to manage all the planning and organization it takes to get everyone on the same page.
We have some essential tips to help when traveling with a large group to Walt Disney World. Knowing these tips will help you be better prepared for the magic. They can also help be set up for success if you take time to discuss some critical decisions before arriving on vacation.
Let’s hop into the top tips for traveling to Walt Disney World with large groups.
Discuss the Budget
Traveling to Walt Disney World isn’t cheap. When traveling with a large group, you might have different budgets regarding what everyone wants to pay for the vacation. As you begin planning your holiday, take time to discuss with the whole group the budget for everyone. Knowing where everyone stands will help decide where to stay, dine, and have different experiences.
When traveling with extended family, be upfront with who is paying for what. If grandparents are willing to help with the Disney Resort, know that dining will be paid for each family. These conversations aren’t always fun, but they can save you a lot of stress when you arrive at Walt Disney World.
Where To Stay
Walt Disney World Resorts have so many unique rooming options that there is something for every family need. Determine where you want to stay as a group, and determine what accommodations will work best for everyone.
If everyone needs their own space, each family unit can have a separate hotel room. On the other hand, looking at some of the suites could be a good idea if you like to have time together to cook some meals, relax, and play games. Disney offers 1, 2, and even 3-bedroom suites that give a lot of room for families to hang out together.
Before booking those Resort rooms, determining what type of accommodations would work best for your family is important. Research what each Resort offers to ensure everyone is happy with what is provided.
Do Some Planning
Before heading down to Walt Disney World as a big group, take some time to do some planning. This might mean monthly pizza, planning nights, or a Google Doc to keep track of information. Take time before heading down to learn about what is offered at each of the four Disney Parks.
You don’t want to wait until you arrive to figure everything out. Before heading down, take time to learn about Disney transportation, so you know how to navigate around the Walt Disney World Resort Property. Download My Disney Experience and make sure everyone can navigate the app. Doing these things ahead of time will make those first moments in the Parks a lot easier to navigate.
When traveling with a large group, ensuring everyone gets to see and do everything they want in each Park will be challenging. During your planning sessions, take time to make a must-do list. Allow everyone to voice their one or two must-do experiences while at Walt Disney World.
Giving everyone time to voice their opinions can help you plan ahead to ensure the majority of those must-dos get accomplished during the trip. If you don’t talk about everyone’s goals, you won’t know that someone did want to ride it’s a small world until it is too late.
When it comes to dining with large groups at Walt Disney World, you are going to have to be flexible. You might have to split the group into smaller parties to enjoy sit-down meals.
Consider booking dining at off times for a better chance of eating together or at larger dining locations such as Ohana, Whispering Canyon, or Biergarten. These locations have large seating areas and can accommodate larger parties.
For those wanting to eat at Disney’s quick-service locations, use mobile ordering to help make sure that everyone can get their food around the same time. Also, consider those larger dining locations, such as Cosmic Rays vs. Casey’s Corner. Look for places that have a menu that offers some variety. Doing this will help everyone find something that they like.
A big tip we have when traveling with larger groups is to be willing to split up. Even though it would be wonderful if everyone could stick together all day long, the reality is that not everyone is going to want to do the same thing, and sometimes space is needed.
When traveling with a large group, be okay with everyone splitting up throughout the day as needed. Not everyone will want to do the same thing moment, and that is okay. It is important to allow everyone to enjoy the magic in their way. Splitting up at times, it allows you to have stories to share when you come back together.
As with any Walt Disney World trip, it is important to set realistic expectations. The reality of traveling with a larger group is that even more personalities come into play. Not every moment will be magical, and not everyone will be on the same page. That is okay.
When planning a large party, look at each day and prepare for a few experiences the whole group will have together. This might be a meal, a swim in the pool, or a specific ride. After that one big event, allow for flexibility throughout the day. If you go into the day with realistic expectations of what the whole group will be able to accomplish together, it will be a lot less stressful of an experience.
Walt Disney World has been and will continue to be an excellent place for large groups to travel together. Planning a trip to Disney continues to also be a complicated process. We hope that by sharing some of these tips for traveling with a large group, you will feel more prepared for a magical time together at Walt Disney World.