Mom’s Life Hacks for a Magical Disneyland Vacation
Updated: Jul 12
A trip to any Disney property is magical and will create memories for the whole family that can last a lifetime. However, as with any other vacation, there will be stress around planning, meltdowns during the day, and some more un-magical moments. However, there are some ways to make your family trip to the “Happiest Place on Earth” all the more enjoyable and easy. Here are 10 life hacks for your Disney vacation:
1. Take Advantage of Your Fastpass Abilities
Disney’s FastPass service lets you make reservations for attractions, meet and greets, restaurants, and shows in advance, saving you time and long wait lines. A guest is allowed three FastPasses at any time during the day-- that means that you can make another FastPass reservation after finishing one of your prior ones. To take full advantage of this, try to plan all your initial FastPasses together as close as possible in the morning so that you can make more FastPasses afterward and take the most advantage of the system.
2. Screenshot Your FastPass Times and Dinner Reservations
Following on the previous tip, having a screenshot or note in your phone of your reservation and FastPass times at the ready will ensure that you don’t miss anything and make the most of your day. Alternatively, you could set alarms on your phone for each of them. The key is to make staying on top of your itinerary as easy as possible.
3. Bring Your Own Water and Snack Bags
It’s no secret that Disney can empty your wallet quickly with high prices, especially on drinks, snacks, and food. However, you’re also allowed to bring in your own snacks and water bottles. Having some healthy and filling snacks at the ready to avoid meltdowns in ride lines is one of the best life hacks to soothe Moms and children alike.
4. Avoid Visiting During Peak Season
It’s widely known that Disney crowds can be brutal, but during the off-season, the crowds aren’t too terrible. With the handy online calendar that gives you an estimate of crowd density based on data from previous years, you’ll be able to find a time where you can spread out a little bit when walking from ride to ride.
5. Download the MyDisneyExperience App
The MyDisneyExperience app is your one-stop-shop for all things planning your Disney trip. From making FastPasses and reservations to checking wait times and looking at menus, the official Disney parks app has everything you need to
6. Entertainment for Long Lines
Waiting in long lines for rides is tough for children who just want to play and explore. To prevent meltdowns or upset kids, make sure to have some form of entertainment or family game at the ready. Some parents bring tablets for their kids, some play games like I-Spy and Charades, some take time to learn more about each other by talking, some bring books, but all of them make the act of waiting more fun for the whole family. There are plenty of things to do that will help make more memories for the whole family during times that are normally painstakingly boring.
7. Arrive Early, Ride First
It’s no surprise that the early bird gets the worm— and gets to ride the “main” attractions first. By beating the crowds, you’ll avoid long lines for the attractions with the highest wait time and be able to do other activities while everyone else waits in line for the ride that you already got to go on with your family. In addition, most visitors start their day in the front of the park and move their way back and around as the day progresses, so by going to the back of the park first, you’ll have a better chance at avoiding large crowds.
8. Wear Proper Clothes
This seems pretty self-explanatory, but many visitors sacrifice comfort for beauty. You’ll be walking and standing all day long and need to also have regards to the weather. Bring jackets and wear layers if the weather calls for it, but don’t underestimate the heat you’ll feel while at the parks. You should also be wearing comfortable shoes that you know can withstand all of the wear they will go through in one day at the parks.
9. Ask For Free Cups of Water
One hack that isn’t as popular as it should be is that at any dining establishment or stand with a drink dispenser, you can ask for a cup of ice water absolutely free. There’s no need to pay a significant upcharge for a water bottle when you can hydrate without dropping a dime.
10. Have Fun!
It’s really easy to get caught up in the whirlwinds of planning a family vacation, but it’s important to remember that at the end of the day, you and your family just want to make memories and have a great time! Things might not go according to plan, but these are the moments that you and your children will cherish for a lifetime, no matter what happens.
Final Thoughts: What Are Your Disney Vacation Tips?
Did you learn any new tips? We understand that while Disney is a wonderful, and sometimes once in a lifetime experience, it can be a little stressful on the family to try and have as magical a time as possible. We hope some of these tips will be tucked into your artillery for your next trip! What are some of your hacks for a Disney vacation? Let us know!