Be it the lack of time you have, the amount you want to fit in in a day or just to do it to say you have, a full park day is pretty full on. Trust us. Been there, done that and have had the sore feet to prove it. So I’m here to share our tips, tricks and plans to get the most out of your day and try and make it as pain and stress-free as possible. Here are our top eight tips for planning and surviving a full park day.
1) Plan your park day months in advance.
Choosing your full park day is very important and boils down to a few things; if you are staying on property pick a day with EMH (Extra Magic Hours) and if not, choose a park that doesn’t have EMH that day. Guests staying on property will benefit from some extra time in the parks either morning or night and subsequently that particular park is likely to be more crowded with resort guests, leaving the other parks hopefully quieter for those staying off property.
2) Schedule your FastPass options.
I would highly recommend not scheduling your passes for first thing in the morning, part of which will be covered in the next point. Book them for hours the park is busier; most seem to start picking up around noon and into the late afternoon. Also, try to get as many of your FastPasses back to back as possible, significant gaps mean leaving it until much later in the day to book your rolling fourth pass option.
3) Arriving early.
Plan to reach your park for rope drop (when the park opens). Crowds will be less than later allowing you to get on more of those rides that you love quicker. Part of this reason is that rides are still filling up, each ride vehicle and the queue itself need to reach a specific capacity before you even notice any considerable wait. This is why many who go regularly consider going early like getting some extra FastPass options in the morning.
4) Consider a park breakfast.
Many of the parks open early for those with breakfast reservations. Not only are you fueling yourself up for a long day ahead, but you also get in just that little bit earlier. While things aren’t open or running, it does mean you can get those magical and practically crowd free pictures of some locations.
5) Schedule your dining reservations.
When 180 days out from arrival at your park, you can schedule any dining reservations you may want. This includes breakfast as mentioned above as well as table service and some quick service locations, like Be Our Guest in the Magic Kingdom. Doing so means not only eating but getting a seat that your feet will be longing for.
It is central Florida, and for most of the year, especially if you come from this end of the globe it is h-o-t, hot! Hydration is essential and not just soft drinks or venti mocha grande frappe-whatever, but water, honest, good water. You may not always realise it, but the amount of heat and walking you will do quickly saps you and dries you out. Not everyone knows this, but if you go up to any quick service kiosk and ask for water, you get it free! No need to use up any snack credits there.
7) Plan some downtime.
You are going to need it! A full park day is pretty full on, and rest is required. Not only with your dining times, but there are plenty of other options, enjoy some of the theatres or not ride based attractions. Take in a show at the Animal Kingdom, sit around the World Showcase in Epcot, the Tomorrowland Transit Authority People Mover in the Magic Kingdom or checking out the new Baseline Taphouse in Hollywood Studios. Try to find a shady spot along the route of one of the parades. Taking care of yourself during the day is very important.
8) Calling it Quits
Lasting from morning till night is impressive and I for one would call it an achievement in itself. Don’t be afraid to call it quits and go rest. Mostly we have lasted from morning until one of the nightly fireworks show depending on the park and time. Your Disney vacation is a marathon, not a sprint and hopefully keeping this in mind allows you to enjoy more. If you don’t get everything you wanted to, isn’t that enough of a reason to book another trip?
Have we missed anything out? Have a few of your own tips and tricks? Post them in the comments below.