A Walt Disney World vacation is an expensive vacation for most guests, so it’s understandable that you’d definitely want to get the most out of your time as possible. No matter how long you will be there, you definitely want to plan accordingly to experience all you can. Here are our top 13 recommendations on how to save big on time while at Walt Disney World:
13. Have a basic plan before your vacation starts.
You will definitely want to plan ahead before you leave for your Walt Disney World vacation. Good planning will help to save a lot of time since you will already have an idea of which attractions will be priority and where to find them. It also helps you to get a feel for show times and when to work those into your schedule.
12. Buy your park tickets before you go.
So many guests waste a lot of time by waiting to buy their tickets at the gate. When you do that you end up spending unnecessary time waiting in line that could be spent in the park. By waiting, you also prevent yourself from making FastPass+ selections in advance, too.
11. Make FastPass+ selections as soon as possible.
Guests staying on property at a Walt Disney World Resort are able to make their FastPass+ selections for their entire stay 60 days prior to their arrival. Guests not staying on property, but have valid theme park admission linked to their My Disney Experience account, can make their FastPass+ selections 30 days in advance of when they will visit the parks. Be sure to use them on attractions that typically have the longest waits.
10. Stay on property.
You can definitely save a lot of time by staying on property. When you are on property you are among the closest that you can be to getting to the parks. If you stayed off property, you may have an even longer drive to get to the parks, thus taking more time out of your vacation.
9. Utilize Extra Magic Hours.
Extra Magic Hours are one of the best perks to staying on property at Walt Disney World. Guests staying at a Disney resort get to enter one of the parks an hour early or stay a couple hours later each day. There is a schedule planned in advance, and at least one park offers morning or evening Extra Magic Hours each day. It’s only available for resort guests, so it’s a great opportunity to ride the more popular attractions with shorter lines.
8. Book character dining experiences to meet and greet with characters.
Character dining meals are a great way to meet characters instead of waiting in line in the parks. You get to dine on delicious food while the characters make their way from table to table. They will pose for pictures and sign autographs. It can save you a ton of time and you get to eat while you do it.
7. Arrive to the parks early.
If you and your party can manage to get up early and be at the parks just before opening, you can definitely get more out of your time. The parks don’t usually start getting as crowded until after the park has been open for an hour or so, so it is a great opportunity to hurry to attractions that typically have longs lines and get them in before the park gets busy.
6. Utilize single-rider lines where available.
There are a few attractions at Walt Disney World that have a single-rider line. This line allows gets to potentially board the attraction faster by filling in the open seats for parties that want to stay together. In the single-rider line, it is very likely that you won’t get to ride with members of your own party. If that doesn’t bother you then it can be a great way to get through the line faster and save a lot of time if you don’t have a FastPass+ for the attraction.
5. Use the Mobile Order option.
It’s super simple to use Mobile Ordering at numerous Quick Service Restaurants throughout Disney World Property. Order and pay for your food from the MyDisneyExperience app and pick up your food when you arrive. It’s awesome! Quick Service locations accepting Mobile Ordering are spread throughout the four theme parks, Disney Springs, and now some Disney resorts. Disney Dining Plans are now accepted as a form of payment via Mobile Ordering as well.
4. Stay out and about in the parks late.
If you can handle being a night owl, we definitely recommend that you close down the parks. You can even hit a lot of the stores toward the front of each of the theme parks as you exit so that you can still do some of your shopping. Some guests hold their shopping until the end of the evening to grab things on the way out in order to save time.
3. Don’t forget about nightlife at Walt Disney World
Once the parks have closed, there are still a lot of great nightlife options at Disney Springs and Disney’s Boardwalk so that guests can still have more fun and magic in their day to get the most out of their time at Walt Disney World. These areas are typically open until around 2AM, so you can enjoy food, drinks, music and a lot of fun!
2. Visit during non-peak times.
If you have flexible travel dates, you can definitely save time and experience more throughout your vacation just by visiting during the slower times. Try to avoid Spring break, summer and major holidays. If you can do that, you could enjoy less crowds and trouble getting FastPass+ selections or dining reservations.
1. Be efficient moving through the park.
Be sure to review the park map and become familiar with the layout of the park. Try not to walk back and forth across the park for attractions. The best plan is to experience the attractions within the same area and move within the park in a way that is efficient to minimizes unnecessary walking time or doubling back.