The Walt Disney World Resort is certainly one of the safest places to vacation, but it’s still important to make sure your own safety isn’t left up to chance. Plan ahead before your next trip, and use these tips to ensure both a safe and magical vacation:
1. Pack portable chargers
One of the most frustrating situations that can arise at Walt Disney World is for a group to become separated and someone’s cell phone is dead. Even if you aren’t planning on using your phone a lot during the day, it’s important to keep it charged so that if your group of adults become separated you won’t waste time trying to find each other and if the kids become separated they’ll be able to get in touch with you.
2. Don’t overexert yourself
If you are not used to the amount of walking and standing still (in lines) that comes with a Disney vacation, you may find yourself really feeling it after the first day in the parks. For your own physical safety, do not overexert yourself, or the kids. If you’re tired, take a break. Even if it’s not a full break at your resort, sit down in a quick service restaurant with some air conditioning or drink some water just to relax for a bit.
3. Instruct kids to approach only Disney Cast Members if they are lost
Hopefully no one in your party gets separated during your trip, but in the chance that kids do become lost it’s important to have a plan in place beforehand. Instruct them to only approach Disney Cast Members if they are lost, not other Guests, and show them what a Cast Member name tag looks like so they know where to go. Disney’s rule for lost kids (assuming they’ve waited some time in the area and the family has not shown up) is that kids under 12 go to Baby Care and kids over 12 go to Guest Relations, so if it gets to that point (which hopefully it doesn’t!) that’s where you’ll want to go. Some parents also give their kids bracelets or temporary tattoos with their contact information on them during vacations just in case.
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4. Be aware of your surroundings
The Walt Disney World Resort is very safe (it’s twice the size of Manhattan– and think of all the safety issues that typically arise in a city that large that simply don’t exist here!). However, it’s still important to pack your common sense and be aware of your surroundings. This can be as simple as walking on well-lit paths, and not over-drinking in you explore World Showcase so you can stay aware of what is happening around you.
5. Double check Ubers and Lyfts or take a Minnie Van instead
In most cases, you’ll only be interacting with Disney Cast Members while you are on property, but there are a couple of exceptions. If you plan on taking Lyft or Uber (which can be a huge timesaver, especially when the parks close!) double check that you’re getting in the right car. Check that the license plate number and make/model match what it says on the app, and have your driver confirm your name then confirm his or hers. You could also opt for a Minnie Van instead, which though partnered with Lyft employs Disney Cast Members as opposed to independent contractors.
6. Avoid bringing unnecessary valuables and use the safe in your room
Safety on vacation can also apply to your belongings. We recommend leaving valuable possessions at home, but if there are certain items you must bring (or cash), plan to lock them up in the safe in your room. If you have anything that is too large to fit in the safe that you don’t want to leave out, be sure to speak to a front desk Cast Member at your resort.
7. Follow Cast Member instructions
Sometimes Guests are not the biggest fans of rules in Disney parks, but they typically exist to keep everyone safe and comfortable. Some of the most important Cast Member instructions you may encounter in terms of safety are things like avoiding running and climbing on walls, especially near pools, and following height requirements for experiencing certain attractions. Additionally, many crowd control procedures (that may prohibit you from say viewing the fireworks or a parade from certain areas) exist to keep walkways clear so Guests have safe paths around the crowds.
8. See something, say something
This mentality applies to any other travel destination as well, and unfortunately day-to-day life, but it’s an important reminder. If you’re out anywhere and something seems off, let someone know. At the Walt Disney World Resort you can let any Cast Member know if you see something that doesn’t feel quite right and they’ll get security to check it out.
9. Bring sunscreen, sunglasses, bug spray, medications…
For your own personal safety, remember to pack everything you need to protect yourself against the Florida sun and to stay on top of any medications you need to take regularly. If you forget sunscreen or sunglasses, you can always buy some in the parks but you’ll pay a premium for doing so and your skin and wallet will thank you for bringing it from home. With so much going on during a vacation forgetting to take medications is far more likely to happen than it is at home, so be sure to pack what you need in your park bag.
10. Confirm dining options for restricted diets
Disney is extremely accommodating to all different kinds of allergies and dietary needs, but it’s still important to check ingredients and ask to speak with a chef to confirm what’s best for you to eat. If you’re still at home doing research, or looking for somewhere to eat on the go, check the My Disney Experience app– the app recently started including allergy, vegan, and gluten-free menus! You can also visit Guest Relations for more information on snacking around the parks with whatever dietary needs you may have.