Reading tips, blogs, and articles is a fantastic way to prepare for a Disney trip! But do you ever feel like all you hear is, do this or do that? The list of rules seems to pile up. Well, this article is for the rule-breakers out there! Here are 5 Disney World vacation rules you can break and how you can manage without them.
1 – You Must Go to All 4 Theme Parks
Well, guess what – maybe I don’t want to go to all 4 theme parks! Alright rule-breakers, yes, each of Disney’s theme parks are spectacular and unique in their own way. Are you going to miss a great attraction or experience that is only offered at a specific park? Most likely, yes, but that’s ok! Disney purposely sets up each park with a must-do experience so they can draw you in. A good example is a family member we have that doesn’t like to be around animals. While we love Animal Kingdom, she has absolutely no desire to spend her money on a ticket to go there. She’ll miss climbing Expedition Everest, riding through the Safari, and watching stage performers at their best at the Lion King. But, you know what – that’s ok! Because instead of spending her time and money on something she’s not certain she’ll enjoy, she gets to spend it relaxing at the resort for the day or maybe having a repeat visit to a different park she enjoys. You’re going to have an excellent experience whether you decide to visit one, two, three, or four of the parks!
2 – You Must Stay at a Disney Resort
Staying on Disney property provides great ease for transportation and fun perks. We enjoy Disney’s excellent customer services and cleanliness we have personally experienced at several of their resorts. However, you may find yourself needing to save on the budget and stay off-site. No worries! Breaking this rule doesn’t mean you are missing out on Disney’s magic! We are Hilton Honors members, for example, and sometimes we earn free stays. Instead of staying on-site, we stay at a local Hilton property for a couple of nights free. While we don’t get the resort guest perks, we don’t feel like we are being gypped from an incredible experience as we drive in and park our car at the theme park. We get to experience the same attractions, dining options, and most all of the same theme park experiences resort guests do. Plus, if you still want to step foot on property at one of Disney’s Resorts, head to one of the resort restaurants for a meal and drinks!
3 – You Must Make Advanced Dining Reservations
Ok – you’ve either missed your advanced dining reservation window, you’ve decided on a last-minute trip, or you just really don’t feel planning and making your advanced dining reservations. This is one rule breaker that has a few restrictions that go with it, but it doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy Disney’s incredible food. Disney takes every opportunity to feed you, so no worries, you won’t go hungry. The restriction to this rule break is you likely won’t get into the hard to get dining locations such as Be Our Guest Restaurant. Look for alternatives to the hard to get dining options. At alternative spots, you can sometimes make reservations just before your arrival. We also suggest you look at off times to dine (2 pm or 3 pm for example) and the plethora of quick-service dining options Disney has readily available. If you still aren’t getting lucky at beating those restaurant crowds, there is always Mickey Ice Cream bars and Turkey Legs!
Editor’s Note: During the phased reopening of Walt Disney World in 2020, dining reservations will be required for table-service restaurants. No walk-up service will be available.
4 – You Must Make FastPass Selections in Advance
We’re fairly certain you’ve heard this one before! Not interested in making FastPass (FP+) selections in advance or just don’t care to understand the process? Disney is still an enjoyable place with or without FP+. Yes, FP+ does allow for you to get on rides much faster without the standby line, but for some, the standby line is all they care to know. Especially on Disney’s newer rides, they have made the standby lines rather entertaining in some areas! Plus, even if you didn’t make the FP+ selections in advance, you can always check the MyDisney app on the day of your visit or head to an FP+ kiosk in the park and a Cast Member can help you select an attraction. Some of the tough to get FP+ selections (such as Millennium Falcon: Smugglers Run) may likely be out, but you never know if you will get lucky! The benefit of not having FP+ selections in advance (and the same goes for dining reservations) is you aren’t on any sort of time table or schedule to try to keep on.
Editor’s Note: During the phased reopening of Walt Disney World in 2020, FastPass+ will be temporarily suspended.
5 – You Must Have the Right Family Dynamic
Sorry kiddos, but who says Mom and Dad won’t enjoy Disney without you? That’s right – take it from us, leaving the kids at home for an “important meeting in Orlando” makes for a great breather away! Some might want to stone us for this one, but especially if your kids have experienced Disney, it’s ok to go without them and enjoy yourself. The same goes for the old rule that you should not take a baby. We asked our pediatrician when it would be ok to take our newborn to Disney. We were given the “wait until 6-weeks” then we took our little man with us. While a Disney trip with a baby is a different experience, with baby care centers and all of the attractions your baby can sit on your lap for, it’s still a really great time! The same goes for the rule that kids should be old enough to remember it. Sure, they might not remember every part or even any of it at all, but their faces filled with joy are just worth it! There is no time like the present.
These are just a few of our tops rules that you will survive breaking! Do any of our rule breaker fans out there have any rules they like to break?
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