If you’ve been a long-time follower of this blog – you may know I absolutely LOVE Disney. In my heart I know that Disney World & Disneyland are the Happiest Places on Earth – the hype is REAL!
Are you thinking about booking a trip to Disney World for your next vacation with the family? If so, then it’s important to plan a trip like this the right way. There’s a lot to consider from the tickets to the hotels and of course, the right time. Here are some of the key points that are worth exploring and a few tips to help you along your way.
A Great Hotel
One of the first things you need to arrange when you decide to visit Disney world is where you are going to stay. There are plenty of accommodation ideas out there for you including the Disney hotels. These are themed so you can book one that will keep everyone interested. For example, The Art Of Animation hotel would be a huge hit with any little mermaid fans. Take a list of all the hotels that are available during your chosen dates. If you are booking Disney as a package deal then you get a hotel included in your deal. If you are not keen on the one they choose for you then you can upgrade to a better hotel for extra money.
When you are researching the different hotels, check to see how far away from the parks they are located. You can walk to and from the majority of the hotels, however, after walking around the park all day the chances are slim that you will want to walk back to your hotel. This is where the Disney Skyliner or the buses come in handy as they can drop you off after a long hard day of riding the rides.
Next, you should ensure you are planning aspects of your Disney vacation in advance. You might think that Disney is something that you can arrange on a spur of the moment. However, this is not the case. In reality, planning a trip to Disney will take a lot of time to ensure that the right pieces fall into place. As such, it’s important to ensure that you spend at least a few months making sure that you have everything organized. Particularly, if you are planning a longer stay in Disney World and you are considering an expansive vacation plan.
Plenty Of Research
It’s important to make sure that you include plenty of research in your trip to Disney World as well. There’s a lot to think about from the rides that you definitely want to go on with the kids to the shows that you just can’t miss. There are also world-class restaurants in virtually every park. By booking these early, you can make sure that you don’t end up missing out on what might be a once-in-a-lifetime trip there.
The Right Clothing
Do think about the clothing that you should be taking with you on a trip like this. It’s important to wear light-fitting clothing that isn’t going to leave you drenched in sweat by the end of your vacation. For instance, you might want to explore women’s dresses. These won’t weigh you down during the heat of the day. You should also find pairs of comfortable shoes. Heels may make your legs look terrific but they aren’t the right choice when you’re wandering around Disney World.
A Smart Budget
If you are traveling to Disney World then you will need to ensure that everything fits into your budget. You might wonder what is the point of a budget as Disney is so expensive, but it is always worth having a price point in mind. This goes for both the package itself and the actual money spent while you are over there. Something to bear in mind is that Disney has gotten rid of all their dining plans since Covid-19. So as you could book for this option previously, you will not have to fork out for all your meals and drinks.
There is a selection of eateries and restaurants in Disney so you will never go hungry. Make sure you book these when you know what you want to eat as they get booked up quite quickly. You will need quite a bit of spending money if you are going to survive the numerous gift shops that you will come across. Be sure to visit the Christmas Shop where you can get baubles, tree toppers, and lots more cool things.
The Right Dates
You might also want to think about choosing the best dates for your Disney vacation. If you want to make sure that you get the lowest prices, then you should consider booking around either January, February, or November. These are largely considered to be the down seasons for the parks. Crowds will be low but you’ll also find that there’s a lot of maintenance taking place and at least one of the water parks will be closed each year.
If you head over during Spring Break, July, or Christmas, this is going to be the busiest time for Disney World. Christmas in particular tends to see multiple parks reaching capacity and getting into Magic Kingdom can feel like an absolute nightmare. As such, you need to be prepared for heavy crowds. It’s also sweltering hot and there’s a good chance of at least a few tropical storms.
Towards the end of October can be the best time for a trip to Disney. It means that things are a little cooler. If you plan it right, you’ll also be there when Disney transitions from Halloween to Christmas decorations. Remember, regardless of when you are traveling, you can book 11 months in advance and start booking tables for restaurants six months before you’re scheduled to leave.
Next, you should consider transportation. In the past, if you booked your tickets through the official Disney Website, then transport to and from the airport used to be included. However, recently, the ‘Magic Express’ has been discontinued. As such, there’s little reason to book through the Disney Website if this is the benefit that you’re looking for. Instead, you’ll need to arrange your own transportation. However, there are still shuttles that will take you to Disney Hotels as well as some of the other sites close to Disney World.
Once you’re in Disney World there are various ways to reach the different parks. For instance, you could think about taking the Monorail between Epcot and Magic Kingdom or perhaps the Skyrail from certain hotels. You can also get shuttles from Disney Hotels, Disney Parks, and Disney springs. This means that regardless of where you are around Disney World, you’ll never need to arrange a taxi if you are staying on-site.
That said, if you plan on attending the nighttime shows or getting to the park just as it opens, then it can be worth renting a car. Disney has their own car rental service and this also provides you with a little more freedom if you’re venturing off-site. For instance, you might want to visit Universal while you are staying at Disney. While this is only about half an hour down the road, it’s quite tricky to get there through public transport systems around Florida. As such, it can be worth renting a car for at least part of your trip away.
Regardless of when you are booking your trip to Disney world, it’s important to make sure that you include sunscreen in your packing. While you can buy sunscreen while you are there, this is often going to be a mistake as it’s more expensive. It’s more budget-friendly to purchase sunscreen before you travel. You just need to make sure that you select the right type of sunscreen as well.
Sunscreens have different SPF ratings. A higher SPF rating means that you can wear the sunscreen for longer without needing to top it up or replace it. Ideally, for Florida, you should aim for an SPF of at least 30, particularly if you tend to burn quite easily. You might also want to consider investing in a water-resistant sunscreen. Disney World has two water parks and there’s another one at Universal as well as various others scattered around the same area. When you’re dipping in and out of the water, it’s important to make sure that you don’t end up washing all your sunscreen off. This will leave you completely exposed to the sun.
The Best Tickets
Finally, you need to make sure that you get the best tickets for Disney. There are lots of different resources that you can use to purchase Disney tickets. For instance, you might want to think about buying straight from the Disney website. The benefit of taking this step is that you can include everything in the same package including a stay at the hotel and the fights if you are traveling from an international location. While buying from the Disney website keeps things simple you might be able to find a better deal online. Particularly, if you shop around.
Do be aware that some ticket deals are designed to mean that you get more value for a longer vacation. As such, it might be worth booking a trip for two weeks to Disney instead of seven days if you want the greatest level of value. The good news is that there’s more than enough to do that will keep you entertained for at least two weeks and may even more. It’s not uncommon for people to book a three-week Disney World vacation which can mean a more relaxing and gentle experience. If you’re interested in finding out how we went about booking our Disneyland Trip, check it out here.
Regardless of where you are planning to travel with your family – take the time to plan accordingly. The more prepared you are prior to your trip, the easier the travel will be. Ultimately, the goal is to enjoy and have a great time and with proper planning, it will be a trip with memories you and your family will remember forever.
Disclaimer: This is a collaborative post. All opinions are my own, 100% honest & unbiased. Affiliate links are posted throughout. Feel free to read my Disclaimer Page for details and information on sponsored posts, affiliate links, and more.