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Travel Essentials for a Walt Disney World Vacation

A Walt Disney World vacation is sure to be an unforgettable experience, with fun attractions and entertainment to be enjoyed throughout the four Disney Parks. However, being unprepared while on vacation, especially in the parks can lead to some memories that are unforgettable for all the wrong reasons. Being prepared for a Walt Disney World vacation takes some simple preparation and thought at home before leaving and can lead to a magical time with lots of avoided hiccups. Here are some travel essentials that all guests should make sure to pack to make the most of a Walt Disney World vacation!

1. Masks & Hand Sanitizer

The number one essential item that guests should have for a Walt Disney World vacation is a mask. Walt Disney World requires all guests wear a mask when on property. Pack several comfortable masks for each family member. Secondly, you’ll want to keep the hand sanitizer handy! While Disney offers several hand sanitizing stations, sometimes it’s easier to use your personal bottle.

2. Magic Band

While they are not completely necessary, a Magic Band can add an unparalleled level of convenience to any vacation acting as a room key, charging option, and park ticket. Guests who stay on property at a Disney Resort can choose a Magic Band before arrival, but there are plenty of basic and special edition options to also purchase in many locations throughout property. Keep in mind, Disney will not longer offer complimentary Magic Bands for resort guests starting in 2021.

3. Smartphone

Guests should also be sure that at least one member of their party also has a smartphone for their vacation. This will give them access to the My Disney Experience App where they can view wait times, make dining reservations, place mobile orders, view maps, and much more. In addition, guests who are in Disney’s Hollywood Studios and want to enjoy a ride on Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance will need to have access to the app at the right times in order to try to obtain boarding passes.

 

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4. External Battery

With use of the My Disney Experience App and other functions such as texting, taking photos, and using other apps, many guests find that their phone batteries can drain fairly quickly in the parks. Instead of being left with no battery, guests can plan ahead and buy an inexpensive external battery that can charge devices on the go throughout each day. This easy option allows guests to always have enough power to check the My Disney Experience App without having to stop and find an outlet to charge or return to the room to gain some extra battery time.

5. Practical Bag

In addition to all of the important items that guests should be sure to pack for a Disney vacation, the bag that they all go into is just as important! A favorite with many guests is a backpack as it can store a lot of items in one place while also being conveniently hands free. The only con of backpacks is having to take them off for access as well as removing them when boarding rides. Another great option is a medium size cross body bag which can fit a decent amount of items, is hands free, accessible, and simply can shift to the side for many attractions without having to take it off.

6. Comfortable Shoes

Many guests who travel to Walt Disney World do not realize the vast size of many of the Disney Parks and Disney Resorts and thus do not account for the many, many steps they will log each day throughout their adventures. One of the most essential items that any guest can pack are comfortable shoes that are broken in, have been tested, and can withstand days of many miles. It’s also a great idea to pack a backup set of comfortable shoes jut incase the first pair gets soaked in a typical Florida thunderstorm. No guest wants to be stuck in the Magic Kingdom in shoes that are either painful or soggy!

7. Band-Aids

While comfortable shoes are definitely the way to go, with all of the walking throughout each day in Walt Disney World it is not unheard of for guests to develop blisters as they continue to log miles. It’s essential to always carry several Band-Aids in a park bag to be able to use them at the first sign of a blister and avoid any further pain! Band-Aids are also great for small scrapes, cuts, or incidents that can happen at random. While there are First Aid locations in all of the parks, it is much easier to be able to simply reach into a bag and grab a Band-Aid on the go!

8. Refillable Water Bottle

With the many miles of walking and the hot and humid temperatures that are customary for Walt Disney World for most of the year, guests can easily become dehydrated while exploring each day. Water is readily available throughout the parks both provided in small cups for free at quick service locations as well as available for purchase in plastic bottles, but the most convenient way of staying hydrated is carrying a refillable water bottle. Not only it is more environmentally friendly, it allows guests to fill up on the go at water fountains throughout the day. Guests might want to look into a refillable bottle with a filter as the Florida water does tend to have a strong taste.

9. Sunscreen

In addition to staying hydrated, guests also need to take precautions to avoid sunburn each day in Walt Disney World. The sun is very strong and guests sometimes do not realize just how much time they spend outside in the Disney Parks. Guests should be sure to pack plenty of sunscreen and have it readily available to reapply throughout each day. This helps to avoid painful sunburns which are sure to put a damper on enjoying time spent in the parks. If guests do find themselves without sunscreen, there are several variations available for purchase throughout the property, however they are more expensive than if bought ahead of time at home.

10. Rain Jacket or Poncho

In addition to the beautiful sunny days, Central Florida can experience some pretty heavy rainfall on a typical afternoon throughout the summer months, and the rest of the year is no stranger to rain as well. Guests definitely should plan ahead and pack either ponchos or rain jackets in their bags each day. Cheap ponchos can be bought ahead of time and switched out each day so that they can properly dry, and they are much less expensive than the ones sold in the parks. Rain jackets are also a great option as they tend to be a little shorter and cooler and can be left unzipped.

11. Ears

While there are plenty of practical items that are essential when packing,  trip to Walt Disney World is also filled with fun and guests should plan ahead to make their outfits cute and accessorized! Guests can do something as simple as wearing a Disney t-shirt or packing the quintessential Disney Park accessory- Mickey Ears! While classic Mickey Ears are still available for purchase, many different styles an variations of ears can be purchased ahead of time or in the Disney Parks so that each guest can show off their individual Disney style!

Credit: Disney

About Caitlin Kane

Caitlin Kane first started visiting Walt Disney World when she was two years old, and despite spending most of that trip quarantined with the chicken pox she managed to fall in love with the place. Visiting WDW every year since, she especially loves learning all about the history and small details of the parks and eating/drinking her way through the Epcot International Food & Wine Festival each fall. When she's not in Disney, Caitlin lives in New York and spends her time counting down the days to her next trip.