Thursday, May 7, 2015

What to Pack for A Day at Disney

Normally we would recommend packing as light as possible when traveling to a theme park in Florida, but for this time of year it is better to come prepared. We are currently in our summer/rainy season so whenever we venture to the parks we bring a little more and we recommend you do too.

Here are our must have items for Disney:
  • Backpack
  • Park Passes/Magic Bands
  • Ziplock Bags (various sizes) - These work for everything from wet socks to keeping your cell phone dry in the rain. Did you know you can still use your touchscreen phone through a ziplock bag?
  • Reusable Water Bottles - We love our reusable bottles, especially ones that keep your water colder longer! You can get free water from anywhere that serves fountain drinks to fill up throughout the day.
  • Cell Phones - Photos, maps, reservations, FastPasses, clock, etc. You can eliminate so many other items with your phone.
  • Charging Cords or Portable Charger -  We normally just bring one, but if you have more than 2 people in your party, you might want to bring more.
  • Umbrella - If it's a particularly rainy day we prefer one of the large tennis style umbrellas (Home Depot sometimes has them on sale for under $5). If there is just a slight chance of rain, we just bring a small umbrella that fits in the backpack.
  • Ponchos/Rain Jackets - We have seen lots of parents drape ponchos over strollers to keep their kids dry. These are also great for covering your bag or yourself on water rides. I recently saw some at Home Depot for under $2! I've heard that the Dollar Store sometimes stocks them too. Don't spend the $20+ on the ones in the park that you will just use for a few hours!
  • Sunscreen - Even if it is overcast, you can still get burnt and skin cancer is not worth the risk. The one we use also contains citronella to keep the bugs away!
  • Lanyard with a Waterproof Case - Keep your cards handy so you don't have to worry about a wallet. We keep our bank card, IDs, some cash, and any membership cards (Tables in Wonderland, D23 membership, Annual Passholder Discount and Parking Cards, etc.) that we might need close by.
  • Mickey/Minnie Ears or Baseball Cap - Because it is DISNEY!! :)
  • Sunglasses - Don't bother bringing your expensive pair that you would be devastated if you lost or broke. Some cheap ones work exactly the same!
  • Extra Pairs of Socks - If you decide to brave one of the many water rides or you get caught in the rain, an extra pair of socks is a welcome relief.
  • Gum - Nowhere on Disney property is gum sold, so bring your own if you want it.
  • Water-Misting Fan - After the rain comes some serious humidity, so bring the fan! We bought ours from Disney about 5 years ago and it still works great! We put some ice and cool water in and it is so refreshing!
  • First Aid Kit - Band aids, antibacterial ointment, pain relievers, allergy medication, and any prescription medication you may need to take throughout the day.
  • Sweaters - Lots of the rides and attractions will feel much cooler than normal if you are soaked to the bone from the rain or from Splash Mountain.
  • Autograph Book - Bringing your own will give you a lot more freedom than if you buy one in the park.
  • Large Pen - The characters that wear gloves have a more difficult times grabbing smaller pens or markers.
I pack some smaller things in their own case in the actual backpack (sometimes I even just toss them in a quart-sized ziplock bag)
  • Feminine Hygiene Products
  • Extra Hair Ties & A Few Bobby Pins - I have lost more than my fair share of hair ties on attractions.
  • Chapstick
  • Touch-Up Makeup - Any makeup products I might want to use to touch up throughout the day; especially if we have a dinner reservation at one of the nicer restaurants in the park.
Now we know it may seem like a long list, okay, it is a long list, but it actually condenses down quite nicely. Throughout most of the year we can get by with just a small backpack and a few necessities, but during the rainy summers and cold winters it is time to bust out the larger backpack and bring some extras.

We hope you found this list helpful for the next time you head to the parks.

What are some of your in-park essentials for any time of year? Did we forget anything?

Monday, June 16, 2014

20 Things to Pack for Any Disney Vacation

These are 20 things we (highly) recommend that you bring with you on your Disney vacation.

On Your Body & In The Room

1. 2 Pairs of Good Walking Shoes - If you are traveling to the Central Florida area anytime between May and August, it is guaranteed to rain at least once every day. Plus, most of the water rides are pretty much guaranteed to get you at least a little soaked. Bring an extra pair of shoes in case you get caught in a sudden storm. This way, when you go back to your room to dry off, you can switch to a dry pair of shoes and leave your wet shoes laying upside down on the A/C to dry while you head back to the park!

2. Moisture-Wicking Socks - Moisture-wicking socks will dry faster and keep you from being as uncomfortable after you get wet from either rain or water rides.

3. Athletic/Mesh Shorts - These dry faster and aren't as heavy as jeans or cargo shorts.

4. Sweatshirt - Orlando is known for its chilly nights. Bring a light sweater. Unless you are coming anytime between October and March, then bring a heavy sweater. I have seen parents draping them over sleeping kids at night too.

5. Sunglasses - I have forgotten these more times than I can count and I regret it every time. Keep an extra cheapo pair in your in-park backpack just in case.

6. Power Strip - With all the electronics that travel with us these days, you need more than the standard 2-4 outlets in each room. We bring a 6-outlet power strip and it is more than enough for 2 people.

7. Extra Duffle Bag - One word. Souvenirs.


8. Backpack for In-Park - Backpacks keep your hands free for snapping photos and hugging characters. Plus they fit over the handles of a wheelchair if you or someone in your party needs one. Over the shoulder bags are cumbersome, get heavy quickly, and get annoying after a while. Fanny packs are good for if you aren't going with young kids, but don't really function well as your only bag. Meaning you will need a second or possibly a third bag! Who wants to have to keep up with all that? Just bring a backpack!

9. Hand Sanitizer - Let's just face the facts. People are gross and don't wash their hands after going to the bathroom. Enough said. Just bring the sanitizer!

10. Phone/Tablet Charging Cords - Bring an extra cord to juice up those devices in park. Magic Kingdom has a spot in New Fantasyland that is full of outlets to juice up your devices for free. There isn't much that is as inconvenient as your phone dying in the middle of the day when you need to look up FastPass or dining reservation information.

11. Camera & Extra Batteries - I always forget this one. Cameras almost always take better quality pictures than your phone. Either bring one from home or rent one. Kingdom Camera Rentals is a great company that you can rent from just for your vacation.

12. Extra SD Cards - You never want to run out room on that SD card in the middle of the day!

13. Zip Lock Bags - All sizes. They keep all your things in your backpack dry if you get caught in a sudden shower or if you want to hit those water rides. Use them for electronics, liquids, snacks, clothes for the kids, sweaters, ponchos, and cash/cards. Most backpacks aren't waterproof and it's better to be safe rather than sorry if everything happens to get soaked.

14. Sunscreen - Sunburns are no fun. We suggest bringing at least SPF 45.

15. Mickey/Minnie Ears - What fun is Disney without Ears? You can buy them or make your own.

16. Self-Filtering Water Bottles - The water in the water fountains is pretty gross (think hot metal-flavored water - YUCK!)

17. Chewing Gum - You can not buy any type of gum anywhere on Disney property so if you are a gum-chewer bring plenty to last the length of your trip.

18. Ponchos/Rain Jackets - Rain. It happens. These are great for the water rides too. Places like Dollar Tree, Home Depot, CVS, Walgreens, and Target sell ponchos and light rain jackets for a fraction of the cost of the ones Disney sells. Pack your own and save some money to spend on souvenirs!

19. First Aid Kit - Bumps, bruises, scrapes, and cuts happen to the best of us. The first aid station in Magic Kingdom is all the way in Main Street U.S.A and you do not want to have to trek all the way back from New Fantasyland or Frontierland just for a band aid.

20. Autograph Book With Large Pens - Most characters can not write with regular sized pens, so bring bigger pens for them to grab. As for autograph books, you can find tons of DIY projects all over the internet or you can purchase one in park. We bought one at Disney several years ago that didn't have a year on it so we keep using that to add to our collection.

Friday, February 15, 2013

Packing For a Month Using Only Carry On Luggage - Final Part

This is a general guideline as to what we will be packing for our trip. This doesn't include our toiletries or undergarments or swimsuits, but it can give you a general sense of what we are packing. As we get closer to our trip I will keep you up to date with any changes!

Packing List for DL, WDW, and Disney Cruise

David's Packing List

Thank you for tuning in! Have a fantastic day!

Until next time - Toodles!