25+ Must-Know Disney World Tips and Tricks
25+ must-know Disney World tips and tricks to help you plan and enjoy your trip to the most amazing places on Earth.
Top 25+ Disney World Tips and Tricks
There’s a lot to know about visiting Walt Disney World! Sure, you could just show up and go to a dance party, but today we want to share some tips and tricks with you to make it the best vacation ever.
Knowing the best time to visit the park, learning which FastPass attractions and more will make your trip more enjoyable and maximize your time in this amazing place. Also, be sure to check out our ultimate Disney World packing list, it’s helpful too! Oh yes – if you’re going on a cruise, check out this hidden tips post.
Here are our top Disney World tips and secrets to remember:
Best Time to Visit Disney World
Everyone knows that parks have high and low seasons. Obviously, summer is a peak time. The family is on a summer vacation to visit Disney World in Orlando. If you’re looking for a less busy time, consider these days:
- Late February – early March
- late august
- Weekdays in November (excluding Thanksgiving week)
- early december
When planning your trip, keep an eye out for the park’s special occasions and holiday events.
buy tickets in advance
If you buy tickets in advance, not only will you be able to find better deals, but doing so will also allow you to make your FastPass selections ahead of time. This should allow you to get a fast pass of your choice, not just a fast pass that you can use before you travel.
Using the Authorized Disney Vacation Program
Did you know that booking your trip with an Authorized Disney Vacation Program is free? ! They get a commission from Disney, so it won’t cost you a cent to use these planners to save time and stress.
My Disney Experience app
Use the My Disney Experience app to book fast passes, dinner reservations, mobile ordering, and more. You can also view schedules, wait times and even bus wait times, so be sure to download and set it up before you get to Florida.
You can also link other accounts and make plans for all your friends and family. This is a must-have tool when visiting Disney World.
Did you know that if you’re staying at a Disney Resort, you can start booking a Fast Pass 60 days before your visit, and 30 days before your visit if you’re not at a Disney Hotel? Booking your favorite attractions is a must. In fact, most popular attractions at each park will run out of fast-passes without advance reservations, so don’t take them.
If you’re staying at a Disney Resort hotel, you can also book FastPass for your entire trip 60 days in advance.
Rider Switch Pass
The Rider Switch Pass is only available at certain attractions, but allows partners to skip the line if they have to wait with a non-attraction rider while other partners move on. Great if you have young kids or a napping baby and still want to ride but have to wait for one parent while they ride with our kids.
All information on the Rider Switch service can be found here.
Disney World Celebration Button
Stop by Customer Relations or any Indoor Merchandise location and ask to wear a free button during your visit for any special event you are celebrating. Not only do you get a fun free button, but the cast likes to pay special attention to them, and often wish “Happy Birthday” and other good wishes during your stay.
Which parks to go to first
If you’re staying at a Disney hotel, guests can enjoy an extra magic hour that allows them to enter the park earlier. Because of this, these parks are busiest throughout the day, so if you’re not using Extra Magic Hours or don’t stay at a Disney hotel, plan to visit a park that doesn’t have Extra Magic Hours that day.
Another tip is to work from back to front counterclockwise to avoid crowding.
Mobile catering ordering
Use the My Disney Experience app to order meals, snacks and beverages wherever you are.
Simply select “Order Food” on the app, choose from a selection of restaurants in your park, make your selection (or even customize) and order. You can purchase with a credit/debit card or Disney Dining Plan. Easy – no waiting!
All guests may call (407) WDW-DINE (939-3463) 180 days in advance for dining reservations.
With the popularity of these restaurants, it can be difficult to walk into these hotspots even in the off-season, so it’s important to book ahead. For a complete list of restaurants to eat and drink, be sure to go here.
Carry a portable charger
Most people tend to use their cell phones a lot when visiting Disney World. Whether taking photos, videos, or using the My Disney Experience app, we recommend bringing a phone charger.
Our favorite portable charger is this one from Anker, it can charge your phone up to 7 times before it has to be recharged! !
It’s nice to have snacks and food on hand when visiting the park, but did you know you can order these groceries and have them delivered to your hotel instead of having to pack and carry them? !
Several companies do this, but some of our favorites include GardenGrocer.com and InstaCart. We like to order snacks and water bottles for the park before departure, as well as fruit and breakfast food at the hotel.
All parks have character meet and greet points. Some of these lines are shorter than others, so be aware that most character meeting lines are shorter in Disney’s Animal Kingdom and longest in Magic Kingdom.
If you want to see multiple characters at once, you can do it in the parade or even at the Character Dining restaurant.
room for souvenirs
Did you know you can have souvenirs delivered directly to your hotel room? Shopping in the park is hard and having to carry them all day, so use the My Dinsey Experience app to order these items and have them delivered. You also have the option to have them delivered to your home, so be sure to check it out!
You can have souvenirs delivered directly to your room from any Disney park. That way you don’t have to carry them around all day! You can also order items directly from the My Disney Experience app and have them delivered to your room, or you can mail items directly home.
It’s usually better to catch the second parade of the day as it’s less busy. There are plenty of great places to catch the parade, but what we usually recommend is the shade away from the main street. 😉
Taking the kids to the park? Add a portable noise generator and small portable clip-on fan to the stroller, and cover it with a blanket to keep them cool during naps. Resting your baby makes things easier and more enjoyable in the park.
Don’t worry if you forget a diaper or formula – you can always find a baby care center in every park. It’s also a quiet place to feed your baby in a rocking chair. Here are the locations of each baby center at each park:
- Magic Kingdom: The Baby Care Centre is located between Casey and Crystal Palace.
- future world: The Baby Care Center is located in the Odyssey Building near the Mexico Pavilion.
- Animal Kingdom: The Baby Care Centre is located in the building next to Pizzafari.
- Disney’s Hollywood Studios: The Baby Care Center is located in the same building as the Customer Relations Department.
Stay cool and enjoy free water at Walt Disney World counter service restaurants. All it takes is a free glass of water (even a large one) to enjoy or refill your water bottle.
Who doesn’t love a great fireworks show? To watch the Magic Kingdom fireworks in the park, we recommend cycling from Dumbo in Toon Town to a less crowded area.
To see the fireworks outside the park and get a head start on the bus, the best location is from the Ticket and Transportation Center, on the right side of the ferry launch.
PhotoPass + Memory Maker
Get great photos with PhotoPass Photographer, and even Memory Maker, which lets you get unlimited photos and videos for one price.
You can also ask PhotoPass actors to take pictures with your phone or camera for free.
Disney Resort Hotel Bell Service
If you’re thinking about going to the park but are checking out of your hotel, be sure to use the doorbell service to store your luggage. They can also store luggage if you arrive at the resort before your room is ready.
put on a cape
Orlando is known for its intermittent rain, so be sure to pack a poncho in your suitcase and day bag. You never know when to use them, but you might find yourself wanting them for some water rides like Splash Mountain or Kalii River Rapids.
character wake up call
At Disney Resorts, you can ask Mickey for a free wake-up call every morning. Kids love this sweet surprise and wake up more excited than ever when they know their favorite Disney character is calling.
Cycling Tips and Tricks
Walt Disney World has so many great rides, it’s hard not to go to all of them. Besides getting a fast pass or going for a ride first thing in the morning, we wanted to share more riding tips and tricks for your next Disney World vacation.
As long as you’re good at solo riding, you can use solo lines at selected attractions to shorten lines and ride the rides faster.this is also great
rides during the parade
While many people love the parade and it’s worth seeing, it’s also a great time to tackle some of the busiest rides. Just make sure you stay on the side of the park you want to be on for a while, as during the parade it can be difficult to traverse between the lands.
Specific riding tips
- animal kingdom safari – Animals go out first thing in the morning when it’s out to eat or it’s raining because animals like to come out to cool off.
- channel flight in the animal kingdom – As the most popular ride in the park right now, this is definitely the ride you’ll want a fast pass for. If you don’t have a fast pass, arrive at the park 45 minutes to an hour early so you can go straight there.
- Fantasyland Attractions in the Magic Kingdom – First thing in the morning or before closing for the shortest waiting time.
- The Seven Dwarfs Mine Train of the Magic Kingdom – It’s another ride to get FastPass, but if you can’t – try it first thing in the morning on a non-magic hour for a faster liner.
- Slinky Dog Dash at Hollywood Studios – If you can’t get a fast pass, take this ride at the end of the night. The kids are usually packed and called off, and the wait time is reduced to 20-30 minutes before closing.
- Frozen by Epcot – This is the journey to get FastPass at Epcot. If you can’t get it, we recommend entering Epcot via the International Gateway as it’s a short drive to Norway.
Money Saving Tips
Here are some of our favorite money-saving tips when visiting Walt Disney World. Everyone has a different budget, but we recommend figuring out that budget when planning your trip to help. 😉
Here are our top three tips for saving money at the park:
Refillable drink cups (and popcorn buckets)
Buy refillable drink cups at the park on the first day and save money by purchasing drinks during your stay. Here are the restaurants where they have free refill gas stations:
- Epcot’s Sunshine Season and Electric Umbrellas
- Be a guest restaurant in our Magic Kingdom
- Backlot Express at Disney’s Hollywood Studios
- Restaurantosaurus & Satu’li Canteen in Disney’s Animal Kingdom
You can also purchase refillable popcorn buckets on your first day to refill during your stay for less money.
Bring your own snacks into the park
We believe that some…