how to plan a day in disney world
Activities Planning

How to plan a day at Disney World: 10 essential tips

Planning a day at Disney World: where to start? It’s not so hard at all to make most out of your Dinsey World days. There are some very essential things to keep in mind, especially during the booking process. Because not having some sort of plan when you visit the parks is the worst idea of all times. In this article we will provide you crucial tips and tricks for how to plan a day at Dinsey World. Take a look!


1. You priorities come first

So many people, so many wishes. The first thing you have to keep in mind is that there is no right or wrong when it comes to the planning. You might visit Disney World with small kids. A planning for a day at the parks will be completely different then a single traveller’s planning. And because there are so many countlessly ways to spend a day at Walt Disney World, please remember its just impossible to see everything. Trust us. It’s impossible. The waiting lines for each ride only will take so much of your time. And you only have so much time. So it’s important you get your priorities listed beforehand and look how you can build your day planning around it.


2. Pick one park a day

Of course, this is a personal matter. But we highly recommend you pick one park a day. This automatically means that a Park Hopper ticket (with this ticket you can switch parks during the day) would be unnecessary. You guys know Disney World has six parks right? Four theme parks (Magic Kingdom, Epcot, Disney’s Hollywood Studio’s Park and Animal Kingdom) and two water parks (Typhoon Lagoon and Blizzard Beach). Each park has so much to offer. Especially for Magic Kingdom, you will not make it to see everything in one day, never mind half a day. This is why we suggest you pick one park a day during your Disney World planning.


3. Make your FastPass+ reservations

There is another reason why to pick one park a day, which is the FastPass+ reservations. FatsPass+ is a free service where you can skip the regular ride queues and go into the FastPass queue . You can only make 3 a day for one park. After these 3, you can switch parks and make more reservations (one at a time). But imagine you made your first 3 reservations in one park. You will need at least three hours of your time, since Disney holds a time window of one hour for every FastPass+ reservation. You will need almost half a day for your FatPass+ reservations, that is if you make them all on a row and not spread out. In that case, you will automatically need a full day at one park. Please use this service as much as you can, it saves you a massive amount of time!


4. Make your Advanced Dining Reservations six months ahead

So, Disney has many fabulous and famous restaurants that are worth a visit. One of the most popular and beloved locations is the Be Our Guest Restaurant. We can imagine you really have locations like these on your Disney World wishlist. But behold: you have to make dining reservations for these locations. And these need to be made 180 days before your actual visit. And please don’t underestimate this, we actually made reservations a few days later and dinner and lunch were already taken. We still had a breakfast spot thankfully, but now you know so you can benefit. So when you book your trip, remember you need to do this. You can do it easily by signing into your Disney account. Use our handy booking calendar to make sure you won’t miss out.


5. Schedule shows/parades

If there is anything you can’t control, it’s the times for the shows and parades. This means you will have to plan around these times. So if you want to catch a parade or witness the fireworks, make sure this has a high priority on your planning. You can change all your other plans, but not these kinds of activities because of the set times.


6. Pick 3 to 5 must-see rides or attractions 

We told you before, don’t get frustrated when you don’t see the entire park in one day. You just won’t make it. So let it go when you notice you have been missing out on stuff. Here’s the best thing you can do: make sure you have dinner reservations ready, have your FatPass+ reservations ready and check the timetables of parades and shows. You will notice a lot of daytime will be filled up automatically. You can pick 3-5 other things you really really want to see and make that happen. If you still have more time left for other things, that’s great. And else, you still had a great day with at least the things you wanted to see most.


7. Avoid weekends and Mondays for Magic Kingdom

This is a Magic Kingdom-related tip. Don’t visit this park during weekends or on Mondays! It will cost you a lot of time waiting in queues because the place will be so crazy crowded! We visited the park twice on a Monday, and we still were not able to see everything because of the many visitors. So if possible, save this day for other parks and the visit Magic Kingdom on Tuesday till Friday (although Friday might be crowded as well). You will get so much more for planning a day at Disney World during off-weekend days.


8. Do the popular rides at the beginning or the end of the day

Rides like the Avatar Flight of Passage will have large queues. And when we say large we mean a waiting time of 2,5 hours is not an exception. That is when you take this ride during the day. Our advice is to get in line for popular rides like these as early as possible, or at the end of the day when crowds are decreasing. Especially when you have some Extra Magic Hours when you stay at a Disney Resort Hotel, use these hours for the highlight rides. It will save you so much waiting time.


9. Be aware of Disney’s FastPass+ tier system

Be aware of what? Disney holds on to a sudden tier system, which makes it impossible to make FastPass+ reservations in every thinkable way. They do this so people don’t make reservations for all the popular rides in one park at the same time. Be aware of this and notice that you might have to choose rides from two separate groups. This makes it impossible to do all the popular rides with a short queue, so when you make reservations like these, save enough time for other rides that can’t be reserved at that time.


10. Check out locations for your Dining Plan credits

This is just for those of you who have a Disney Dining Plan included. You might want to check out all the Disney Dining Plan locations before you visit the park. I remember some parks had only 1 or 2 locations for breakfast. Knowing this, you might want to have breakfast at your hotel instead. We have a list for you with all the Dining Plan locations on our Free Downloads page. Take a look, for this is also an important part for how the plan a day at Disney World.


how to plan a day at disney world


So there you go, here you find ten important tips to save lots of time and get the most out of your Disney Day. If you want to know way more tips, if you need help with the booking process or you just want to know more about visiting Disney World, check out our Kindle ebook First Trip To Disney, a guide for booking your Disney World vacation. You can download it on Amazon and it’s all you need for the perfect and most complete Disney trip.

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