“Hiya pal!”

Welcome back to this week’s top five tips for first time Disney travelers. You can find the first installment of Super Essential Tips for Your First trip to Disney World here.

Tip #1 Rider Switch

The Rider Switch program is a wonderful convenience for families traveling with little ones either too small, or too afraid to go on an attraction. One parent gets to ride the attraction with family and is given a FastPass for the other parent to come back anytime in a two-week window to use the FastPass with two other guests.  

Tip #2 Disney Transportation

Complimentary transportation sounds too good to be true, because it is. Don’t get me wrong it’s a great savings to not have to rent a car and not have to worry about getting around yourself. The complimentary transportation comes with the expensive cost of your time. Disney recommends an hour and a half to allow yourself to get to your destination when using their transportation system and that is pretty accurate.  

A perk to staying at a Deluxe resort is your proximity to the parks allows you to get to the park nearest you much faster. If you are staying at a resort that has ferry access, or even the Monorail you will get to the park in a reasonable amount of time. The Deluxe resorts near Epcot and Hollywood studios are walkable to each park and they also offer a ferry.   

Moderate resorts don’t have Monorail access. Both Port Orléans Resorts offer a ferry to Disney Springs. However, the crowds waiting for the busses back to the moderate resorts aren’t usually as crowded as the value resort lines.

The Value resorts are a great nightly rate. The trade-off is that they are much farther from most of the parks, and Disney Springs so wherever you want to go will take at least an hour, if not an hour and a half there and back. The Campsites are the only exception offering a ferry to the Magic Kingdom. Since the value resort rates are so generous you do have a higher volume of guests staying there all sharing the same bus system, so lines for the buses and the ferry get backed up pretty quickly. Be sure to allow enough time to get to your destination.

Tip #3: Entertainment

Don’t miss the parades and firework shows! Electrical Light Parade and Wishes at the Magic Kingdom, as well as Illuminations at Epcot are each a must-see!

Tip #4: Bring or rent a stroller

We have learned to make sure we have two strollers available to our three children. We have a toddler who uses a stroller exclusively, and older kids ages eight and nine. The first time we visited we didn’t rent an extra stroller and really regretted it. The little ones can’t do four park days and keep up a normal pace. It is nice when we are trekking through the parks to take turns pushing one of the older kids who needs a break than wearing them down and having a rough day. For a typical day in the park if you plan on spending the entire day you can expect to take anywhere from 18,000 – 22,000 steps. If you are going for one day I don’t think it is necessary to have a stroller for older children. If you plan to be there for more than two days, I think it is an absolute necessity. There are so many rental companys to use in Orlando. We went with Let’s Go Strollers and we were very pleased with both the rental and service we received from the company.  

Tip #5: The water is gross

The water on Disney property smells and tastes gross. When we placed our order for the stroller rental we added two flats of bottled water. It was worth it to have good tasting water readily available.

I hope you found this week’s tips valuable. Stay tuned next week for the last installment of Super Essential Tips for Your First Trip to Disney World.

“See ya real soon!”