Disney Packing List – Things You May Forget To Pack
So, you're planning a Disney based vacation? Good for you! Whichever Magic Kingdom location you have selected, you are sure to create a bagful of memories for you and your family that will last a lifetime.
On the subject of bags, however, what should you include in yours?
This guide will talk you through what to include in your suitcase when packing for a trip to a Disney World resort in California, Florida, Paris, Tokyo, Shanghai or Hong Kong.
Before we talk about anything else, if you have pre-bought your entrance tickets as part of a package, do remember to pack them, as you won’t be able to use your deals if you don’t have the relevant paperwork, and you will undoubtedly have to purchase again, which is very costly.
As you can tell from the above destinations, you're going to want to pack for warm weather.
Temperatures of all of these locales can soar during all seasons, even the winter, and don't forget that there will be a lot of people packed into the parks – personal space will be at a premium – and under no circumstances forget to pack your sunscreen – you’ll be outdoors for much of the day.
We presume that you already know how to pack a suitcase for any trip including clothing, toiletries etc., but these are just a few reminders of essential items you may need specifically around the Disney complex.
Whilst there are plenty of ‘Disney’ shops and gift shops, purchasing most other things is quite difficult in the world or land of Disney.
A method of keeping cool will be essential, and you could bankrupt yourself by purchasing bottles of water from the many kiosks and stands dotted around the parks.
Pack a refillable water bottle to stay hydrated, but just bear in mind that everything at a Disney park comes with a lengthy line; including the restrooms.
You may also want to consider packing a small, portable fan that you can whip out of your purse at a moment's notice, or even some kind of cooling towel.
Your vacation is supposed to be like a fairy tale, and nothing can sour a mood faster than overheating and feeling uncomfortable in your own skin.
It goes without saying that you will also need good, strong sunglasses and a sun hat, to fend off the relentess and potentially dangerous rays from the sun.
If you are on any form of medication, please remember to pack enough for your trip.
You will be unable to purchase medications inside any of the Disney complexes, and if it is something you need to take once or more during a day, you will need to take them with you.
In the event that you do forget, many of the complexes will be close to shops providing medical preparations, so remember to get them before you go into the parks.
A few sticking plasters and some antiseptic cream would not go amiss either – children will get so excited and possibly fall over, so you need some quick remedies apart from a hug and a kiss from mom!
With the wealth of sweet and savoury delights on offer to buy (think ice creams etc for the little ones!), do remember to take a supply of ‘wet wipes’ for both hands and faces – nothing worse than sticky fingers and a chocolate covered face!
Whilst most of the Disney parks have good changing facilities for babies and toddlers along with a selection of items such as diapers and formula, should you forget, they are very costly and again the queues are long, so try to be prepared and take enough with you – equally so, an extra pair of shorts would probably be welcome!
Despite the heat, you should also be prepared to get wet.
Even if you avoid some kind of weather-based downpour, Disney’s parks play host to many 'wet rides' that will leave guests soaked to the bone.
Pack a poncho for such occasions – even if it's just a cheap and cheerful pocket mac that can be thrown in the trash at the end of the day. You can even pick up a multipack for next to nothing.
It's more than likely that a phone will be essential, if only to stay in touch with family members that disappear in different directions, or to utilize the many apps that each park will offer guided tours and maps upon.
However, when was the last time your smartphone battery lasted an entire day when it was in regular use?
This can be resolved by packing a small portable charger that will restore battery life to your device from the safety of your pocket.
Selfie sticks are banned from Disneyland
Many people may decide not to take a camera to a Disney park, opting to use their smartphone to snap photos throughout their trip, but if this applies to you and your family just be aware that selfie sticks are banned from Disneyland, as are large camera tripods and drones.
You could of course pack a few disposable cameras, particularly if the kids want to be part of the photographic experience and start stamping their feet in order to get your phone or camera!
We just mentioned pockets, but in reality we meant fanny packs.
They may not be the most fashionable of attire in 2017, but you're likely to be hopping on and off rides throughout the day and you won't want to be worrying about what has fallen out of your many pockets.
A fanny pack is a way of keeping all cellphones, cash, keys, tickets, maps and anything else that you may need in one place.
If you can't bear the idea of such an item, then consider a small backpack – as long as you do not attempt to drag a large suitcase into the park you should not fall foul of the rules.
We mentioned the amount of time that you'll spend waiting in line at a Disney park earlier, so obviously you'll want to wear comfortable shoes and maybe even some kind of padded insoles.
However, maybe you could also consider packing some kind of picnic blanket?
You'd be astonished how many purposes these little squares of cloth can serve.
In addition to taking a seat on the ground while you're stuck in a queue that never seems to move, if you'd rather not eat in the park's many restaurants you could instead rely on kiosks and vending machines and find a patch of grass to enjoy a snack.
You could also use a blanket to mark a spot on elevated ground to watch one of the park's many character parades. Folding chairs are forbidden under park policy, but it would be unrealistic to attempt to pack such items anyway.
Disney Gift Card can help you save money
Disney holidays can be pretty expensive, so any opportunity you may have to save a few bucks should be leapt upon.
One way of doing this is to pick up a Disney Gift Card ahead of your trip. Loading up one of these card will prevent the need to carry too much cash around the parks, and will provide discounts of varying degrees on hotels, rides, restaurants and just about anything else affiliated with Disney resorts.
Now, lets think about the smallest guests that will be visiting the park.
A huge part of what makes the Magic Kingdom magical is the chance for children to meet Mickey, Minnie, Elsa, Snow White and Buzz Lightyear in the flesh and, in addition to photos, most of the actors portraying these roles will cheerfully sign autographs personalized to your little one.
Image Credit: Loren Javlor
Don't find yourself scrambling around for a napkin and a pen every time your kids eyes light up when they spot their favorite character from ten paces – pack an autograph book, or even just take some kind of beloved branded merchandise that can be signed, and keep mementos of all of these interactions in one place.
It is also a wise move to buy some lanyards for the children to hang round their necks to carry things, or to place an identity card in – Disney reports that lost children are a frequent occurrence and this would go a long way to being reunited with them if this terrifying experience occurs.
Lanyards are also good for clipping sunglasses to so you may like to consider them for yourselves as well.
One final thing to mention – and we don’t want to be killjoys on your long awaited trip – do try to pack a travel umbrella.
Destinations such as Florida can be subject to sudden downpours, one moment sunny, the next a deluge of rain. It can also double up as a sunshade for the little ones.
There are many telescopic versions now available that won’t take up too much space.
This guide should have given you some idea of what to fill your bags with for a Disney vacation, but there's one final piece of advice to impart – don't fill them on the outgoing trip.
If you're traveling with young guests – or even those that are just young at heart – you're going to end up bringing home plenty of souvenirs to remind you of this holiday of a lifetime.
Make sure that you have enough space in your luggage to fit all of these keepsakes into!