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15 Things to Buy Before You Go on Your Disney World Vacation

You can definitely save a lot of time and money if you put in a little bit of upfront planning and shopping before you leave to go on your Walt Disney World vacation.  Here is our list of the top 15 things we recommend that you buy before you go on your Disney World vacation.

Editor’s Note: We understand that with the phased reopening of Walt Disney World, some of the advice in this article may not apply if you visit while certain experiences are temporarily suspended. (You can read everything you need to know about the phased reopening by clicking here). We will continue to share articles that give guidance on a “normal” vacation to Walt Disney World, along with any special changes or instructions you may need to be aware of during the phased reopening to provide the best tips we can regardless of when you are visiting. ~ Chad & Cindy


Items Needed for the Phased Reopening-

  • Face coverings that fully cover an individual’s nose and mouth. You’ll need one for everyone in your party, ages 2 and up, along with some extras.
  • Hand lotion. Frequent hand washing dries out hands. This will help!

15 – Disney Gift Cards

If you have a Target card, membership to Costco/Sam’s Club or other loyalty programs, you can often get Disney gift cards at a discount.  This savings adds up when it comes to paying for a vacation and you can use Disney gift cards to pay for just about everything on property. This is also a great way to use contactless payment while at Disney World.

14 – Princess Dresses / Costumes

Kids that are 12 and under are able to wear costumes around Walt Disney World and it is definitely much cheaper to bring them with you.  The costumes and accessories are quite expensive if you wait and buy them there.

Witch Minnie Dress

13 – Hand Sanitizer

You will definitely want hand sanitizer around to help keep hands clean after touching all the different public areas.  It is much cheaper for you to bring it yourself instead of buying it there. Hand sanitizer is even more important to have with you and use frequently. While Disney has hand sanitizer out for use, it never hurts to have your own so you can use it when you really need it.

12 – Child Care Items

You will be able to buy a variety of child care products on property, but it will be cheaper and you can ensure you get your usual brand if you bring it with you.  This includes diapers, formula, swim diapers, etc.  Don’t worry, though.  If you run out, you will be able to buy something that will do the job.

11 – Pins for Trading

Editor’s Note: During the phased reopening of Walt Disney World, pin trading has been modified.

If you like to do pin trading while on your vacation, then it is definitely a good idea to buy some trader pins before you go.  You can typically pick up pins from eBay or other online boards for a discounted price and then use those to trade for some of your most desired pins.

10 – Memory Maker

Memory Maker is the add-on that allows unlimited downloads of PhotoPass and attraction photos.  It is cheaper to add it to your package before you go on your vacation.

9 – Sunscreen

Sunscreen is a much-needed item when you are spending a lot of time in the Florida sun.  It is much more expensive if you wait and buy it on property and you aren’t guaranteed to find the brand or type that you want.

8 – Comfortable Shoes and Clothes

I can’t stress this one enough.  You definitely need to make sure that you have comfortable, breathable clothes as well as comfortable shoes for your trip.  You will want to test it all out before your trip to make sure it won’t cause you any issues.


7 – Reusable Water Bottles

It is a great idea to bring reusable water bottles with you so that you can refill at water fountains or locations where you can get free ice water to add to your bottle.  Purchasing bottled water can get quite expensive and it is important to stay hydrated.

6 – Disney Dining Plan

Editor’s Note: During the phased reopening of Walt Disney World, dining plans are temporarily suspended.

You have to add the Disney Dining Plan to your vacation prior to your stay and you will definitely want to consider doing that.  It gives your vacation an all-inclusive feel and helps you to better budget your meals in advance by pre-paying for the plan.

5 – Glow Sticks

It is no secret that kiddos love glow jewelry and toys.  They sell these items at Disney, but they are much more expensive.  We always like to bring some glow sticks and toys with us so that the kids still get glow stuff to play with and we save a ton of money!

4 – Sunglasses

You will most likely want sunglasses when you are on your vacation and they are much cheaper to bring with you.  Plus you can make sure that you get the type you want with the right level of coverage and fit.

3 – Ponchos

You may or may not end up needing one during your stay, but if you do, you will be glad to have brought one.  Ponchos and umbrellas at the parks are expensive when you can get them for $1 or $2 before your trip.

2 – Theme Park Tickets

You will waste so much time if you wait to purchase your park tickets from the ticket windows at the parks.  Those lines can get awfully long.  If you purchase your tickets in advance then you can bypass those lines and go right to the entry points for the park.

1 – Portable Phone Charger

We live in a cell phone and electronic device society, especially since many of us use the cameras on the devices in order to capture the various moments and memories.  It is a good idea to bring a portable phone charger with you so that you have options if your phone starts to die while in the parks.

For a no obligation, FREE Quote on a Disney vacation package, please contact our travel partner Magical Vacation Planner at 407-442-0227 (407-442-0215 for Spanish). You can also request a FREE quote online by Clicking HERE.


About Christy Caby

Hi! I’m Christy, and I am a wife and mother of 2 young boys (ages 5 and 2). I first fell in love with Disney when my mom took me when I was a child. After that I proceeded to go to WDW for my senior trip with my friends, and I completed a year in the Disney College Program (working in merchandise at Mickey’s of Hollywood at Disney’s Hollywood Studios). I shared my love of Disney with my now husband and sucked him in. He proposed at Disney, we honeymooned at Disney, we started bringing our boys before they were born and then as early as 8 weeks old. We then continued to vacation to Walt Disney World 2-3 times per year. We decided that what makes more sense than just moving to Orlando so that we could live the Disney life and be here for all of our favorite events and seasons every year. That is exactly what we did! Now we are at the parks a couple times a week and go for most events and major holidays. We can’t get enough and get to experience Disney in a whole different way. I love to share this love and passion for all things Disney with the world and hope that I can help others appreciate the magic that Walt Disney World has to offer!