As you can tell I LOVE Disney!!!
This was my 10th time to Orlando FL so I've decided to do a little top ten tips & Tricks to Disney and the area.
1. Tickets- Buy your tickets in advance if you plan on going to more than one of the Disney parks (theres 6 all together) This will save time at the front of the park as you wont be standing around in ticket queues when you could just be walking right on in! Pay attention to your tickets 7 day park tickets and park hoppers etc. run out after 14 days from when you first use them *they never use to*.
2. Parking- Unless you're staying in a Disney hotel, then you're going to need a car. We rent of a company at the airport called Dollar, they are amazing we often get free upgrades on our car and would highly recommend. So for those of you who rent a car all parks will charge you to park and it currently stands at $14 and $15 at Universal Studios.
3. Parks- Get to the parks early and I mean be there for them opening, you'll be surprised at just how many hundreds of people are ready and waiting for them to let you in! If you need to buy tickets, booths open half an hour before park entry. Be in line ready to rind some non fast pass rides such as Dumbo.. Along with the 4 parks and 2 water parks there is also a place called Down Town Disney. This is full of the most amazing restaurants, shops and has loads to do and see. *I'll be doing a separate review on this later!*
4. Fastpass- This is a life saver currently you still don't have to pay for this in Disney park but be aware if you're going to Universal studios or Islands of adventure fast pass comes as an extra and I mean a BIG extra cost which is a bit unfair! Anyway fastpass allows you to pick a time to come back to the ride and join a much shorter que. And trust me when you've been waiting in line for 90mins *in high season* you'll be thankful you got it! There are stations at each ride with fastpass for you to claim your tickets and remember these are totally FREE in Disney so make good use of them!
5. Parades- Disney has a bunch of parades for you to enjoy throughout the day but if you've already seen then or just not that into in take this time to get on rides as most of the park will be watching.
6. The Magic, The Memories and You- This is an amazing new nightly projection show that transforms the castle into a canvas of images. It's a 10min show right before the famous Disney fireworks and it's NOT one to miss. I was in tears the first time I saw this last year (2011) and I can honestly say I have never seen anything so amazing. did you see the queens jubilee consert with madness on the roof and the palace changing colour, it's the same thing but 100 times more amazing!!
7.What to Wear- Ok so in Florida it's not only hot but its very humid too so you're not going to want to wear a lot of clothing. If you know the park has water rides and you want to get wet that day I would suggest that you don't wear denim shorts, yes they may dry out in the heat but trust me it takes ages!! The main thing is to be comfy and comfy shoes are essential. I wore sandals but noticed a lot of the americans wore trainers I soon realised why!
8. Shopping- America is sooo cheap for make up and beauty supplies so if you can get yourself to Target! I got hordes of beauty products and ended up spending $100 in my first trip and when I got home priced up the £ enuilivalant and well it was almost double! Shocking and unfair to us Brits.
Another tip is get to the outlets Orlando has amazing outlet stores *Premium Outlets is the best* and you can find Michael Kors, Victoria Secrets and other designers at less than half the price. Got cash to splash then head to The Mall At Millenia for Tiffany's, Chanel, LV and sorry but these are full price!
9. Have a plan- Knowing where you want to go and when can really help and destress. A holiday in Florida is a busy one theres not much time to chill by the pool if you want to get everything done in a typical two weeks. So if you know which parks you want to visit and when you wont get over whelmed. Note that weekends are going to be busier and I would strong suggest to skip the water parks on sat and sun because all the locals *who have annual passes* will be in there. if you stay in a Disney hotel take advantage of early park entry during the week and u'll be sure to get a sun lounger!
10. Enjoy It!!- If you're going with little ones it can be a very long day parks don't shut till late and if you want to see the fireworks you could well be in there till 12am. It is very hot so if you can try take a break in the afternoon you can leave the park that day and return later, refreshed and ready to go again. Even though Im 22 I still love Magic Kingdom as much as the first time and through all the excitement you really need to take the time to just stop and have a look around because honestly its magical!
Really hope this helped at least 1 person and if you have any question about Orlando and places to eat etc. I will be doing a food review but please get in touch I know the area pretty well so would love any questions you have. Long post I know but I hope you enjoyed reading it if you made it this far haha!