Planning a trip to Disney can be as exciting as it is daunting. With so much to do and see, it’s essential to come prepared. This comprehensive guide will help you know what to buy for your Disney trip to ensure a magical and stress-free experience.
For a Disney trip, essential items to pack include a portable charger, sun protection, comfortable shoes, a backpack with multiple pockets, reusable water bottle, rain jacket or poncho, snacks, cooling towels and misting fans, glow sticks and light-up toys, and Disney-themed clothing and accessories. Depending on the specific Disney park, you might also need an autograph book and Sharpie, leisure sheet, or a plastic folder. Don’t forget travel documents and consider buying Disney-specific merchandise before your trip to save money.
Essential Items for a Disney Trip
Whether you’re visiting Disneyland, Walt Disney World, or any other Disney park worldwide, there are some universal essentials you should pack.
- Portable chargers/power banks: With the use of mobile apps for park maps, fast passes, and photo ops, your phone battery might drain faster than usual. A portable charger can be a lifesaver.
- Sun protection: This includes sunscreen, sunglasses, and sun visors or hats. Even on cloudy days, UV rays can be strong.
- Comfortable shoes: You’ll be on your feet most of the day, walking an average of 10-12 miles, so comfortable footwear is a must.
- Backpack with multiple pockets: A water-resistant backpack with insulation can hold your essentials and keep your snacks and drinks cool.
- Reusable water bottle: Staying hydrated is crucial, and many parks have water refill stations.
- Rain jacket or poncho: Florida weather, in particular, can be unpredictable, so it’s always a good idea to carry a lightweight rain jacket or poncho.
- Snacks: Pack some non-perishable snacks to keep your energy levels up.
- Cooling towels and misting fans: These can be a blessing in the hot summer months.
- Glow sticks and light-up toys: These can be a cheaper alternative to the ones sold at the parks for the night parades and shows.
- Disney-themed clothing and accessories: To add to the magic, pack some Disney-themed clothing and accessories. You can find cheaper options online or in stores before your trip.
Don’t forget to pack your essential travel documents like tickets, hotel reservations, and identification. Also, consider packing items for entertainment during downtime, such as books, magazines, or handheld games.
Different Disney parks might require slightly different packing lists. Here’s a general guide:
- Disneyland Resort/Walt Disney World Resort: In addition to the essentials mentioned above, consider packing an autograph book and Sharpie for character meet and greets, glow sticks for nighttime shows, and pennies and quarters for pressed penny machines.
- Tokyo Disney Resort: Consider packing a leisure sheet for sitting on the ground during parades and shows, a plastic folder for keeping papers and maps organized, and entertainment for kids while waiting in lines.
Buying Disney-specific merchandise before your trip can save you both time and money. Some popular items include Disney-themed t-shirts, hats, sunglasses, autograph books, lanyards, coffee mugs, pins, Mouse Ear Headbands, and Disney-themed backpacks. Many of these items can be found online at lower prices than in the parks.
Clothing and Footwear
When it comes to clothing, opt for lightweight, breathable fabrics. Pack a mix of t-shirts, shorts, jeans, and comfortable trousers. Don’t forget swimwear for water rides or hotel pools and lightweight jackets or sweatshirts for cooler evenings.
For footwear, comfortable walking shoes with good support are essential. Some popular options include athletic shoes, memory foam or therapeutic flats, Crocs LiteRide Shoes, or Hoka One One Mach 5 Trainers.
Before your trip, it’s worth downloading the official Disney app for the park you’re visiting. These apps provide real-time wait times, fast pass bookings, restaurant reservations, and more.
Packing for Kids
If you’re traveling with young children or infants, remember to pack essentials like diapers and wipes, a stroller (check Disney’s size restrictions), baby food and spoon, bib, sippy cup or bottle, extra clothes, and comfort items like a favorite blanket or toy.
Weather and Climate Considerations
Disney parks are located in various climates, so it’s essential to research the specific climate conditions of each park and plan accordingly. Regardless of location, always pack sunscreen, a hat, and a reusable water bottle.
Finally, to maximize space and convenience during your trip, consider using packing cubes, rolling clothes instead of folding, packing heavy items at the bottom of your suitcase, and utilizing empty spaces like the insides of shoes.
With careful planning and the right packing list, your Disney trip can be a magical and stress-free experience. Remember to pack essentials, plan for the specific park you’re visiting, and most importantly, don’t forget your sense of adventure and child-like wonder.
Frequently Asked Questions
Are there any restrictions on what I can bring into a Disney park?
Yes, Disney parks have specific rules and restrictions regarding what items are allowed. For example, large suitcases, coolers or backpacks, any type of glass container, and selfie sticks are prohibited. Always check the specific park’s rules before packing your bag.
Do I need to buy tickets in advance for Disney parks?
It’s highly recommended to purchase tickets in advance to avoid long lines at the ticket booths. Moreover, purchasing tickets ahead of time allows you to make FastPass+ selections earlier, which can be a significant advantage, especially during peak times.
Can I bring my own food and drinks into Disney parks?
Yes, guests are allowed to bring food items into the parks, including snacks and foods that do not require heating. However, glass containers and alcoholic beverages are not allowed. Remember, all food items must be in a backpack, cooler, or similar container.
Are there lockers available at Disney parks?
Yes, each Disney park provides locker rentals for a small fee. They are available on a first-come, first-served basis and can be a great place to store jackets, souvenirs, and other items you may not want to carry all day.
What is the FastPass+ and how does it work?
FastPass+ is a system that allows you to reserve access to certain park attractions, entertainment and character meet and greets in advance. You can make selections from home or on the go via the Disney app. It’s included with your park admission.
Can I rent a stroller or wheelchair at Disney parks?
Yes, strollers, wheelchairs, and ECVs are available for rent at all Disney parks. However, quantities are limited and available on a first-come, first-served basis. It’s recommended to rent these items in advance.