Our very first travel series is here, and we’re excited to feature the Happiest Place on Earth!
We’ve become Disney pros over the years. Here is a list of essential (but not very obvious) things you need to pack – especially if you are staying at value resort and trying to save extra expenses.
1) Skirt/Pant Hanger
Repurpose plastic ones from old navy or Wal-Mart and use them to hang bathing suits and towels to dry. The bathroom will have a clothes line but its get full fast with a family of 4 or more. Clip the bathing suits to the hanger then hanging them on the clothes line will leave lots of room for each members wet gear
We brought a bottle of wine (or 3) to the hotel. MAKE SURE YOU HAVE A CORKSCREW. Enough said?
Everyone wants pretty new shoes for vacation, right? The downside of new shoes is breaking them in. Blisters can put a big wet blanket on a trip that involves days of walking. Moleskin is convenient product that you can cut to size to put on places where you shoes are rubbing on your feet – just don’t forget scissors because moleskin is tough and impossible to rip.
5) Pins for Trading
My family is big into pin trading, however please don’t buy scrapper pins from eBay. There are other ways to save on this fun hobby: I always stock up on pins at the Disney Character Outlet in Orlando. There ARE some great sellers you can buy off Amazon and Ebay, but do your research!
Pick up cheap ponchos at the dollar store and grab a bunch, because you’re going to need them. It will downpour for 10 minutes in the middle of the day. We would throw the ponchos on and then toss them when the rain stopped ; it was less to carry and the cheap ones are impossible to fold up back to their original size.
We also pick up glowstick from the dollar store; they made waiting for fireworks a little easier and distracted the kids from asking up to buy the $25 light up that every other vendor was selling.
8) A Brightly Coloured Scarf
I have this amazing stroller – so amazing that everyone else has it too. I tie a bright pink scarf around the handle so it is easy to spot when we’re getting off of a ride.
9) Dish Soap Sample
Excellent for washing sippy cups, bottles, and Disney drink cups at the sink in the bathroom. One pack is good for 5 or 6 washes.
10) Laundry Samples
I save up all my samples for traveling because I am “that” person the dreads going home with a million loads of laundry. On our last day while the kids are napping I take all the clothes down and start washing them in the guest laundry room. The washer and dryers are huge and take double loads so I can get 6 to 8 loads done in 1.5 hours. That would take me nearly 3 days to do at home.
11) Ziploc Bags
I cannot suggest this enough. I used them constantly throughout Disney – I always pack my toiletries in one because if it explodes there isn’t cream/shampoo/toothpaste everywhere. I bring large ones to carry extra clothes in for the kids so if some has an accident or gets wet I have a place to contain the mess (and spare clothes too). I bring smaller ones to fill with ice for using in a cooler, for cooling down a boo boo, or for moving my doggy-bag leftovers into because they take up less room in the mini fridge and stay fresh longer.
12) Night Light
Another easy thing to pic up at the dollar store. The little LED ones are nice and colourful and not too bright.
13) Collapsible Laundry Bin
These are easy to find at Walmart or Ikea and they fold up super flat and weigh practically nothing, so they’re very easy to bring in your suitcase. There isn’t a lot of storage space in the room so we would leave our clean clothes in the suitcase and put dirty ones in the basket. On the last day I would put all the dirty clothes back in the suitcase and take them down to the laundry to be washed.
Use them to write names on Disney mugs (because everyone in your resort will have the same mug) or hand them to a character to sign autograph books. They are handy!
15) My 411 Wristband
Mabel’s Labels makes these incredibly handy wrist bands that allow you to customize them with the information you want. We usually order ours with the following: “IF LOST CALL MOM AT…”. I have seen others put allergy warnings or other important medical information. It’s always important to be prepared. I still tear up when I think about the little girl I found in Disneyland who didn’t speak much english but had lost her mom. When the little girl and and her Mom were finally reunited, she and I hugged and cried; we didn’t speak the same language, but our hearts did.
16) Pre-Purchased Souvenirs
Disney merchandise is everywhere now. We also have great Disney stores close by. Buying little souvenirs at home is much cheaper. Yes, there are always specials trinkets you can only get in the park – but stickers, pens, Disney character shirts, etc. are much cheaper outside the park. I had forgotten socks for my son and paid $16.95 for 3 pairs that had Mickey Mouse ears on them. The same socks at Walmart = $5.50.
17) A Fanny Pack
I know I know I know…. Tacky right? Nope. Amazon has a huge selection of awesome fanny packs that are stylish and convenient that can be worn around your waist or across your body. I was able to keep it on me on almost every ride and I didn’t have to leave money or important documents in the stroller and out of my sight.
18) Shower Curtain
Very cheap and easy to get from WalMart or the dollar store. We kept our’s folded under our stroller and if the sky was going dark while we were going into eat or on a ride we covered the stroller with it. Worked awesome and kept everything including the diaper bag dry.
19) Over the Door Shoe Holder
Hangs up in the closet (which is usually right next the bathroom sink). Use the little pockets to keep toiletries, first aid and medications handy and visible. The bathroom counters in the value resorts are small, and this is an easy way to reduce clutter.
This encyclopedia is easy to carry around and use as budget-friendly character autograph book. Featuring 150 of Disney’s most popular characters, this is a book they’ll love to reference again and again.