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Planning your Disney Day

Disney has a 25 hour day (I wish), here are some tips to use it to the max!

I’ve never come back from a Disney vacation and not wished I had a recovery day or two.  Disney is busy no matter how you look at it so we just try to embrace it and enjoy bouncing from activity to activity.  There are some strategies to keep in mind to help make your time most efficient.

First, try and get your Fastpass+ at one park in the morning or afternoon. This at least blocks off one half of your day and allows you to do something else (another park, pool, mini-golf, lunch, shop, nap, whatever!) with the other half.

Second, eat at off times.  This is a strategy we’ve been employing since we started.  Maybe it was because we were in our early 20’s then and were off everyone else’s schedule anyways but it works.  We frequently bring healthy in-room breakfast options (oatmeal, breakfast bars, protein bars) and grab one on our way out the door for the morning.  This assures us we are hungry by 10:30-11am and we are hitting the lunch lines well before everyone else.  Same thing with dinner, err on the side of early dinners and boom, you’ve got all evening to enjoy the parks with less crowds, hit up all the evening shows, or just walk off that 3 course meal you had (plus a nice glass of bubbly which is included in the dining plan!).

Third, use your natural body clock to your advantage.  If you are an early morning riser, great, hit the gym, get the kids up, snag the bus and get going early.  Crowds are less in the morning, though let’s face it, there’s still crowds.  If you are a night person, you can also really benefit here, just note that the parks may close a bit early depending on the time of year but they do tend to get quieter in the afternoons as families retreat for pool/nap time.  Nate and I like to get up early (usually earlier than our regular routine!).  We hit the gym for a light sesh, shower up, grab a bar, and head to the parks.  Alternatively, we play a round of sunrise golf (more on that later) then maybe grab a nice lunch in Disney Springs or Epcot.  In the afternoons, if we don’t have a Fastpass, we like to meander around the countries with an adult beverage or two, taking in the sights.  Then, off to dinner and evening shows, or off to an evening cocktail and late dinner depending on the mood. 😉  We are generally in bed, sleeping, by 10 pm. Don’t giggle, you need your rest at Disney!

Fourth, avoid parks that have special events that day.  For example, Mickey’s Christmas Party or Halloween Party, Epcot on weekends during Food and Wine (or other festivals – this is when the locals come in), or any other special ticket day.  Parks open up at 4 pm for ticket holders and are insanely, less enjoyably (unless you’re a ticket holder) busy. You likely won’t get much done during these times, best to hit another park or do some wandering in Disney Springs.

Fifth, get Fastpass+ for your “must do” attractions.  There will always be lines, but it’s wise to get Fastpass+ for the rides you MUST DO.  Those are generally also the longest lines.  You can save yourself hours over the course of the day here.  Then you can bounce around and see what line is the shortest after you get your primo attractions out of the way. And again, afternoons are generally quieter if you can brave the crowds!

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