We took our first Disney Trip last February, and let me just say it was legit magical. I am OCD when I plan trips for us. I enjoy it so much, but it can be overwhelming to travel to a land uncharted with no direction. So I researched and I’ll be sharing some quick tips of Do’s, Dont’s, Yes-es, & No’s.
Planning: Our trip was planned for February 8 -11 in celebration of my daughter’s sixth birthday. This date came after we unknowingly missed the recommended 60 day booking window. It worked out perfectly for us, but in the event you want to enjoy your trip on a special day, go ahead and book popular rides and restaurants two to three months ahead of time. A good friend of mine recommended a travel agent with A Pair Of Ears and this made our process worry free.
Our agent, Alyssa Soileau was great. She booked Ava’s birthday dinner at Cinderella’s Castle so that our daughter could meet Disney princesses without feeling rushed by hundreds of other beautiful girls looking to meet them too. We were also able to watch Happily Ever After Firework show from the castle and it made her birthday one we’ll always remember! Not only did Alyssa book our resort stay, VIP rides, one on one meet and greets, but she also recommended and booked great places to eat.
I encourage you to get a travel agent or a seasoned Disney planner to help you for your very first trip. Having a well scheduled agenda helped us to not waste hours with not knowing what to do next. Disney can be overwhelming, but we were able to get the most of our experience.
Attire: I’m a bit over the top when it comes to clothing. To make it easy, I picked a theme for each day and hopped online to find outfits that made my vision come true.
- Day 1: Plaid Day I Think Im Gonna Kick It With My Mom Shirts
- Day 2: Princess (Ava’s Birthday Express yourself)
- Day 3: Stripes for Animal Kingdom Day
- Day 4: Disney theme shirts
Stay: We stayed at the POP Century Resort. Honestly, I won’t stay there again. My husband and I weren’t impressed. The resort was average if you exclude the giant size statues all around the property. The rooms were like an overpriced Motel 6. Again, it was decent for the experience but I’ll opt next time
Rides & Shows: Seven Dwarfs Mine Ride, Avatar, Slinky Ride, Little Mermaid show
Food: We packed sandwiches, snacks, juices, water in a back pack. This was a big money saver! Everything Disney was expensive. I mean, it’s a great business move: charge the overly excited parents $10 for a regular bottle water because in the hype of things, they’ll pay it.
This nugget was repeated over and over on blogs and sites I’d researched prior to our trip. They were right! So, we went to a Walmart at Disney and bought Hawaiian rolls, cheese, and turkey to make our snack sandwiches. We got condiments from some food vendors. This worked out great.
We’re from Louisiana so when it comes to food, it’s got to be extraordinary for us to give it a great rating. However, there were some places that left us wanting more. To name a few:
Fave Quick Service: Casey’s Corner in Magic Kingdom
The Lands: Magic Kingdom Theme Park is a must! We went twice during our four day vacation. It reigns supreme in comparison to the other parks. We also really enjoyed Hollywood Studio. The new area Toy StoryToy Story Land attraction is phenomenal, a real must see! Animal Kingdom was “Meh”. We were over it quickly. I figure your local zoo can give you the same experience. Of course seeing the characters in their safari gear was neat, but not much to be enthused about after that.
If we don’t extend our next stay past four days, we’ll book Magic Kingdom for two days, Hollywood Studio for one day, and try Epcot.
Do’s & Don’ts
Do get a stroller if you have small children. Why? You will waste your money on a Disney trip if you don’t. We walked, rode rides, took potty breaks, and literally the kids were worn about by noon. Unless you want to retire to your room when they need a nap, get the stroller! Also, it served as extra storage for things we bought throughout the day. We used Kingdom Strollers They dropped the stroller to our resort upon. check in, and picked them up when we checked out. We highly recommend them!
Do get the magic band! It is convenient; serves as your resort key, and you can pay for things with it instead of carrying a wallet or purse. We also got them for our children. So convenient!
Don’t bring a large purse. It will get in the way of the hustle and bustle of moving throughout the day. Crossbody bag it out for a few days and only bring the necessities.
Don’t buy costumes at Disney unless you just want the experience. This too was a nugget that I read over and over, but I wanted the thrill of watching Ava pick out her princess dress. Welp, then she chose shoes, wand, and a tiara. Before I knew it, we spent $100 for the same dress and accessories I could’ve ordered online for half the price. Was she excited? Yes, but I don’t know that shopping for the dress was more exciting than being at the most magical place on earth. To sum it up, it wouldn’t have made a difference either way for her. She was happy to have the experience.
Don’t choose style over comfort. Sis, once you’ve walked from one side of Magic Kingdom to the other, you’ll want to be anything other than stylish in uncomfortable shoes. I made that mistake, I started out in my glitter black tennis and quickly transitioned into the ugliest, most comfortable flats I owned. LOL.
Don’t drive if you can help it. It was so stressful. We came from Louisiana and I don’t want to remember how long it took us to get to Orlando! Next time, we are flying! Trev and I agree that preventing physical and mental exhaustion will be so worth the extra money needed to fly.
Do enjoy the firework show! We never got tired of it the two night we spent in Magic Kingdom.
Do take pictures, but Don’t get so caught up in picture taking that you cheat yourself of your own experience. Disney is magical. It is all the hype you have ever heard. With that in mind, enjoy every moment and sometimes put the camera down to take it all in.
Do attend the Fantasmic Show before you end your trip. I highly recommend it on the last day as the finale’ to an awesome vacation. On our last night, we had the opportunity to be VIP guests at Fantasmic Show & Fireworks We happened to be in the right place at the right time and in the blink of an eye, we were VIP sitting in an entire section by ourselves! It wasn’t coincidental! It was all God, blowing our minds as he always does.
Lastly, Do know that you will need a vacation after your Disney vacation! I got the most exercise on this trip, and after running four days we were all exhausted. We needed a full day to lie in bed and recoup, but it was so worth it.