Are you planning your first trip to Walt Disney World in Orlando, Florida? If so, you're in for a treat! This world-famous theme park is home to four amazing parks—Magic Kingdom, EPCOT, Disney's Hollywood Studios (including the Star Wars attraction: Galaxy’s Edge), and Animal Kingdom—as well as two water parks.
With so much to see and do, it can be tough to know where to start. That's why we've put together this guide of Disney World tips for first timers!
What should I bring to Walt Disney World?
To make your visit go smoothly, it's best to plan ahead and bring everything you need with you. Here are some essential items: sunscreen, sunglasses, hats, comfortable shoes (especially for walking around the parks), snacks, a refillable water bottle or two, and appropriate clothing for the weather.
Don't forget a portable phone charger, you don't want your phone to die and not be able to take pictures for the rest of the day! If you're visiting during the summer months, light colours will help keep you cool!
How much does it cost to go to Walt Disney World?
A one-day ticket to a single Walt Disney World theme park for anyone aged 10 or older ranges from $109-$189, with most days having a price of $134+. Children ages 3-9 have slightly discounted tickets ($104-$184), and kids younger than age 3 don't need a ticket at all.
You need to add the cost of meals and accommodations, so budget accordingly. If you are planning a multi-day trip to the parks, look into buying a discounted ticket package that includes multiple days and park hopping privileges.
When is the best time to visit Walt Disney World in Florida?
The busiest times at Walt Disney World in Florida are from mid-December to mid-April, and June through August. These times often also coincide with peak season ticket prices.
If you are looking for fewer crowds and cheaper tickets, visit Walt Disney World in the fall or spring instead. You'll still get amazing weather and plenty of attractions to explore!
What should I do first?
Before your trip, set up a My Disney Experience account and make sure to download the official My Disney Experience app. This will help you plan out your days at the parks so you can make the most of your time there! With this app, you can create a personalized itinerary, based on your interests and favourite types of ride. You can set up your own tip board to track the wait times for your top experiences.
Being new to Walt Disney World can be daunting, but don't worry! Here are the top 10 things you need to know about the Happiest Place on Earth:
1. Make a game plan
Get familiar with the parks and attractions so that you can plan your days as efficiently as possible. Decide which park to visit each morning and evening. Designate a meeting spot by choosing one location per day where everyone can meet up if someone gets separated from the group.
2. Get the Disney Dining Plan
The Disney Dining Plan is a great way to save money on meals while you’re in the park. You can choose from different levels of plans depending on your budget and how much food you want to eat. Plus, if you get the plan, you’ll be able to enjoy some delicious snacks and meals throughout the day without having to break the bank!
3. Arrive early
If you want to truly experience all that Walt Disney World has to offer, arrive early! You'll beat the crowds and have more time to explore each park before they close for the night.
4. Book your FastPass+ in advance
Planning ahead pays off at Walt Disney World. Make sure to book your FastPass+ for popular rides and attractions online as soon as you can so that you don’t miss out on the fun. FastPass is a great tool for skirting the lines and getting on all your favourite rides without waiting too long!
5. Pack light and bring a spare change of clothes
Bring only what you need with you into the parks, such as a phone charger, sunscreen and maybe an extra pair of socks. Leave unnecessary items in your hotel or car so that you don’t have to carry them around all day long.
If you are planning on visiting any water parks during your trip, be sure to pack a spare change of clothes in case you get wet or need to cool off.
6. Get your MagicBand+ smart bracelet
The MagicBand+ is a smart bracelet that connects you to your Disney app and includes new smart features such as colour-changing LED lights, vibrations and gesture recognition. It's the newest version of the MagicBand, and it can be used to enter the park, buy merchandise, access interactive experiences such as Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge, and check in at Lightning Lane entrances. Plus it makes a fantastic souvenir!
7. Take breaks
Don’t overdo it and exhaust yourself! Remember to take regular breaks throughout the day so that you can relax and recharge. Stay hydrated and drink plenty of water, and take a break from the Florida sun when you need to.
8. Check the weather and be prepared for anything
You don’t want to be caught off guard by a sudden storm or extreme temperatures. Make sure you bring sunblock, sunglasses and a hat for sunny days, or a raincoat and umbrella for rainy ones! After all, you are in Florida, the weather changes quickly down here, be prepared!
9. Take advantage of Early Theme Park Entry & Extended Evening Hours
If you're staying at any Disney hotels, make sure to take advantage of the exclusive early access or late-night admission. Early Theme Park Entry allows guests staying at Disney Resort hotels to take advantage of a 30-minute early entry into the Walt Disney World theme parks every day. Guests can also enjoy extended evening hours on select evenings in select theme parks with the Extended Evening Hours program.
10. Have fun!
Above all else, have the most fun possible! Whether it’s your first time at Walt Disney World or your tenth—enjoy every moment and take lots of pictures along the way.
Explore the most magical place on earth
With these tips, you’ll be ready for an amazing trip to Walt Disney World and create memories that will last a lifetime! So grab your mouse ears and get ready to explore the most magical place on earth! While preparing your Disney getaway in Florida, make sure you speak with a soNomad agent about travel insurance!