Disney Tips for Your First WDW Trip

Heading on your first Disney Trip? Welcome to the addiction. But seriously – believe the hype. There’s a reason that a trip to Disney is on everyone’s bucket list. The company has perfect the art of making magic, and memories. You’re going to have an incredible time – but planning your first trip can be pretty overwhelming. Today, we’re sharing our best tips, to make your first trip the best it can be.

1. You need a plan

This piece of advice is so important, that we think it determines if you end up liking Disney World or not. Going into a huge place, that you’ve never been before, that can have monstrous crowds at times, without a plan in place, is a recipe for disaster. It’s important to know what you want to see before you get there, and have a list of priorities so you can make sure you accomplish them. This is especially important if you are visiting during a time of year that school is out, or a Holiday season. We highly recommend The Unofficial Guide to Walt Disney World if you’re a first time guest – it’s a long read, but you can pick and chose the sections you want, and the whole thing is full of fantastic tips.

2. Make your Disney Dining Reservations early

What most first time guests don’t know, is that most dining reservations, or ‘ADR’s, as they’re called, are made several months in advance. It’s virtually impossible to just walk up to a sit-down restaurant, and be able to wait to eat there. If there’s a restaurant, especially a character meal, that you have your heart set on, make a reservation far in advance.

3. Consider the Disney Dining Plan

Considering how your family eats, the Disney Dining Plan, might, or might not save your family money. If you’re going to eat breakfast in your hotel room everyday, and take sandwiches to the parks, then this is not for you. We think that many of the elaborately themed Disney restaurants add to the experience of our trip. We personally enjoy the Disney Dining Plan for one simple reason – peace of mind. If you are one that enjoys all inclusive resorts, you might find yourself a fan of the Dining Plan. You pay up front, and then enjoy the freedom of not having to check price tags the rest of the trip, and sighing every time you put your credit card down. To us, that freedom, makes the Dining Plan worth it, even if it doesn’t end up saving money.

4. Consider going when schools are in session

This might not be feasible for you and your family, but crowds are significantly light when schools are in session. To us, lighter crowds, mean happier days and less cranky people. Our all-time favorite time of year to go is the first week of December. While it’s not as dead as it used to be, it’s not ridiculously crowded, and all the Christmas decorations are up in the parks, and it adds an extra element of magic to everything.

5. Download the My Disney Experience App

Want to know wait times without having to run around the parks? Want to know what entertainment is happening in the park you’re in? Want to see all the reservations and fast passes you have planned for the day? THEY CAN ALL BE IN THE PALM OF YOUR HAND!! Downloading this app is one of the best ways to make your life easier.

6. Budget more time

Everything, and I mean everything is going to take longer than you think. From waiting in lines, to eating at restaurants, to traveling to and from your hotel to the parks. Things take time, and you cannot set your expectations too high on how much you can accomplish.

7. Use Small World Vacations
Small World Vacations has Authorized Disney Vacation Planners, that can take the stress off of you for planning your trip – FOR FREE. There are few things I love more than ‘free’, especially when it’s going to help you have a magical, stress free vacation. Get in touch with them here.

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