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Top 11 Things Walt Disney World Pros Always Do

Guests look forward to a Walt Disney World vacation from the moment they decide to book a trip. With vacations there costing a decent amount of money, planning is a very important part of any Disney vacation in order to make the most out of each moment. Disney pros have accumulated several tips and tricks pertaining to planning and enjoying a vacation which help to save time, money, and stress in the parks. By taking a few simple steps at home and following the advice of the pros, guests can have an amazing vacation. Here are eleven things that Disney pros always do!

11. Make Early Dining Reservations –

Advanced Dining Reservations (ADRs) for Disney restaurants can be made up to one hundred and eighty days in advance and Disney pros know the value of acting as early as possible. Many Disney restaurant are so popular that they quickly book months in advance, making it impossible for guests to try and secure a last minute reservation or attempt to walk up to the restaurant. By making reservations as far in advance for restaurants like California Grills, Le Cellier Steakhouse, and Cinderella’s Royal Table guests can ensure that they will have a table and be able to enjoy their meal.

10. 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 growing quickly and include numerous restaurants throughout Disney World property.

9. Book FastPasses Wisely –

Any guest in Walt Disney World can book FastPasses which act as reservations for an attraction and allow guests to return at a designated time to ride with little to no wait time. Guests who stay on property at a Disney Resort can book their FastPasses sixty days in advance and guests who stay off property can book thirty days in advance. While FastPasses are available for most of the attractions in Walt Disney World, Disney pros know that there are only a handful of attractions which are worth booking FastPasses for. For example, guests who book a FastPass for a ride that generally has little to no wait are wasting the opportunity to use that FastPass for a different attraction which often has a longer wait. Some of the best attractions to book FastPasses for are Slinky Dog Dash, Alien Swirling Saucers, Avatar Flight of Passage, Na’vi River Journey, Frozen Ever After, Seven Dwarfs Mine Train, Soarin’, and Test Track Presented by Chevrolet.

8. Rope Drop –

One of the best ways to kick of a Disney day efficiently is to arrive at one of the parks for rope drop. By getting to the park before official opening, Disney pros ensure that they are some of the first guests inside the park and are treated to few crowds and low wait times for popular attractions. While getting up early might not be everyone’s favorite thing to so on vacation, it is a tip that Disney pros love.

7. Go Against The Crowd –

This Disney pro tip is one that can be learned and utilized simply by being observant. When a guest enters into the park, often times there is a clear path that most of the crowd takes. For example, when Disney’s Hollywood Studios opens each morning, the majority of the crowd heads directly for Toy Story Mania. By being observant and noticing which direction the crowd heads in, guests can make a conscious decision to head in the opposite direction where they will find little crowds, low wait times, and quiet areas.

6. Go Left –

This simple tip saves a few minutes that would have otherwise been spent waiting on line. Some attractions in Walt Disney World feature lines which split at a given point forming a right and left queue. Many times guests subconsciously move to their right, making that side of the line generally a little longer than the left. So to save a few minutes that would have otherwise been spend waiting on line, guests should always go left.

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5. Have A Plan –

Before leaving home, Disney pros often make tentative plans for each day that they are going to be in Walt Disney World. By knowing each morning which park to head to, what experiences are must dos, and what dining and FastPass reservations exist, guests can save a ton of time that would have otherwise been spent trying to formulate a plan.

4. Leave Plenty Of Time For Travel –

Disney pros know that one of the biggest mistakes many rookies make is not leaving enough time to travel around Walt Disney World. At nearly forty seven square miles, the Disney property is huge and getting around takes time. Guests who are staying at a Disney Resort are treated to complimentary transportation to and from the parks and Disney Springs, but they should plan on spending at least an hour getting from one place to another. While it generally does not take an hour to get from point A to B, sometimes things happen and it is better to be early for a reservation or tour than to be late and lose your spot.

3. Line Up Early –

One of the best tips that Disney pros use all the time is to line up early for any parade, fireworks show, or nighttime show. Guests should line up or arrive at least an hour early for parades like the Festival of Fantasy Parade and shows like Happily Ever After, Star Wars Galactic Spectacular, Illuminations: Reflections of Earth, and Fantasmic! All of the parades and shows are extremely popular and often times the curb, walkways, and theaters can fill up to capacity well before show time. To ensure a great viewing spot, lining up early is a must.

2. Know The Quickest Way To Get Around –

While transportation is generally easy in Walt Disney World, sometimes it can be a little confusing. Disney pros always know the easiest way to travel from one place to another without losing time. For example, guests who have a dining reservation at ‘Ohana at Disney’ Polynesian Village Resort will find that the easiest way to get there is to take the bus to the Magic Kingdom and then take the Monorail’s Resort Loop to the Polynesian. While it may seem complicated, knowing the most direct route will save time in the long run.

1. Know That You Can’t Do It All –

The biggest tip from Disney pros is simply accepting that a guest can’t see it all on one vacation. Walt Disney World is a massive place with so many attractions, shows, restaurants, and resorts that it is physically impossible to see everything in one trip. Guests who try to do it all end up exhausted and frustrated when they fall short. Disney pros know to pick the things that are most important and enjoy every moment without running around trying to see it all.

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.