You might think you have the best packing list for Disney World already made written out and ready to be used. Perhaps you’ve looked it over and can’t seem to think of anything else to add. Toothbrush, toothpaste, razors, medications—all of the travel essentials you need.
But remember, Disney World is a different kind of vacation. And Disney World in April, no less, requires a special kind of packing list, my friends.
And so, in this article, I’m going to help you prepare the absolute best packing list for Disney World in April, so you and your family can be completely prepared for whatever the Orlando weather—let alone Mickey Mouse himself, throws at you!
What to Pack for a Disney Vacation
While Disney World is always changing—new rides, new shows, new prices (yikes), there are some Disney World packing essentials you should never be without—whether it’s in April or any other month. So let’s get those out of the way first. Here are a handful of essential packing items you should strongly consider throwing into your suitcase:
Anti-Chafing Stick: Chafing is an irritation of the thighs that is caused by friction or moisture. Even though some women strive for a “thigh-gap”, most women’s thighs touch, and that is completely normal! Being normal though does not mean it is not annoying, especially walking around Disney on a warm day.
There have been plenty of days when I came home from a day in the parks to find the inside of my thighs red and blistered. To avoid this painful irritation bring an anti-chafing stick with you! Body Glide, an anti-chafing stick brand, is made from plant-derived ingredients, is hypoallergenic, and is small enough to fit into your bag.
Anti-Blister Balm: Wearing the wrong shoes or new shoes that haven’t been broken in can cause painful blisters on your feet. Instead of dealing with that nightmare, buy Body Glide’s anti-chafing stick for your feet, Foot Glide.
Apply this balm on your feet before putting on your socks and shoes. The balm helps prevent your toes and feet from rubbing up against your shoes. As with Body Glide, Foot Glide is made from plant-derived ingredients and is hypoallergenic!
Parade Blanket: If you want prime viewing for the fireworks or parade, you might have to camp out as early as an hour before they start. If you aren’t lucky enough to find a bench, you could be sitting on the ground for quite a while.
That is why you need a parade blanket! Not only can this blanket help keep you warm on a chilly evening but it can also serve as a cushion for your bottoms while sitting on the ground. My favorite ‘parade blanket’ is Magellan’s LuxeTravel Blanket. It is small, foldable, and soft, and closes up into a pouch that can also be used as a pillow!
Ponchos: Ponchos are an obvious item to add to your packing list but did you know that ponchos come in all different qualities? On our first trip to Disney World, we made the mistake of buying ponchos from Dollar Tree. We thought we had beat the system, why spend an arm and a leg on a Disney poncho when you can get one for a dollar!
There is a reason why they sell things for a dollar and that is because the quality is terrible. That poncho lasted us one rainstorm. The plastic was garbage bag thin and tore immediately upon opening. If you are buying ponchos before your trip, check the quality of it. You don’t need a raincoat by any means but a quality, non-tearable, poncho is sufficient.
Ice Packs: Disney no longer allows loose or dry ice into its parks. If you have perishable items with you that need to stay cool, bring ice packs with you. Fit and Fresh Cool Coolers are long-lasting ice packs, that come in fun shapes like penguins and butterflies. They are also slim and compact and can fit comfortably into a small cooler bag.
Reusable Straws: Disney has phased out (is banned too strong of a word?) their use of plastic straws and replaced them with those paper straws that used to be exclusive to Animal Kingdom. These straws are the absolute worst, they become soggy very fast and it feels as if you are drinking your soda out of a pixie stick and if you suffer from sensitive gums, sipping straight from the cop is not an option.
As great as these straws are for the environment, they are irritating. An alternative to using them is to bring your own reusable straws. Disney does sell their own reusable straws but you are also able to find them in bulk on Amazon for a cheaper price, this way if you accidentally toss one in the trash, you won’t feel as if you just wasted $20.00.
Shout Wipes: We have all seen those adorable pictures of a little one enjoying a Mickey Mouse ice-cream bar. The child has a big, chocolate-smeared smile from ear-to-ear, in a Goofy hat, and is wearing more of the ice cream than they had actually eaten.
Unless you want to end up having to change and bathe your child in a restroom, toss some travel-size Shout Wipes in your bag. These wipes will help remove those chocolate stains just in time for the cinnamon sugar from a Churro to dirty it up again.
Baby Wipes: Of course if you are traveling with a small child, you already have baby wipes on you, but if you are single or older, there might not be a need to have baby wipes on you, until now. Yes, baby wipes are known for wiping babies’ bottoms and cleaning dirty hands’ faces but they have so many other uses as well.
They are perfect for wiping down handrails and surfaces. My favorite way to use a baby wipe is to use it as a refreshing face wipe. On a hot, humid, Florida day, your face can begin to feel very greasy and for those who can’t stop in the restroom and wash your face, just wipe off with a baby wipe. It’ll help you feel refreshed and cool.
Reusable Water Bottle: By using a reusable water bottle you are helping to save the earth as well as $5.00 every time you want to drink water. A lot of people prefer to buy Dasani water at Disney because they do not want to fill up their bottles with water from a public fountain and I completely understand that, especially with all the health risks. If drinking fountain water isn’t your thing you can go up to any food service location that serves fountain soda and ask for ice water.
They will give you a fresh cup that you can then transfer to your bottle! I am a huge fan of Yeti products, they are my go-to choice for a reusable water bottle for the parks. It keeps my water ice cold all day long.
Resealable Food Storage Bags: Whether you use good ol’ fashioned Ziplock bags or the new and stylish Bumpkin bags, resealable storage bags are a necessity for a Disney vacation. These bags can be used for a variety of reasons, holding a change of clothes, holding wet clothes, storing medication, storing snacks. If you decide on the Bumpkin bags they also come in cool Disney designs!
Backpack/Bag: The first few time my family and I went to Disney, we brought giant, old-school-style, Jansport’s. By the end of our trip, our backs and shoulders were killing us! The perfect Disney bag for your vacation depends on you. Are you traveling with your family and children?
The Maxtop Lightweight Hiking Backpack is a good choice for you then. It is a durable and spacious bag that can store items as big as a laptop. If you are single or traveling as a couple, or just taking an adult trip, a great bag for you is a Loungefly bag. These bags are great if you are just planning to spend a few hours in the park or do not need to carry baby wipes, snacks, chargers, and other items that take up a lot of space. They are made of faux leather and run about $80.00 but their fun Disney, Marvel, and Star Wars designs make them worth it.
Be sure to check out my recently published article on finding the best backpacks for Disney World.
Cooler bag: There are many reasons why you might need to use a cooler bag in Disney. If you have a baby and need to keep their milk cold if you have perishable snack items and any medications that require refrigeration. As long as your cooler bag fits within the dimensions 24x15x18 inches, then you can bring it into the theme parks. You would need to bring ice packs since Disney no longer allows loose or dry ice. A great cooler bag to pack for Disney World is the Lifewit Soft Cooler Bag. This bag can fit up to 6 gallons by volume. After your Disney vacation, it works great as a lunch bag or beach cooler!
Allergy medication: Planning a trip for April means you’ll be in Disney World for the Epcot International Flower and Garden Festival. This is an annual event that features themed gardens, topiaries, and outdoor kitchens.
Did I mention there are lots of flowers? Lots. For those of you who suffer from seasonal allergies, beautiful, spring flowers can be dangerous. During these times, the last thing you want to do is have a sneezing attack while waiting in line for Frozen! Ever After, which is why it is beneficial for you to bring allergy medicine with you. Zyrtec works for me but also Claritin or Non-drowsy Benadryl can work as well.
Disney World Clothes to Wear
When it comes to writing your best packing list for Disney World, you’re probably wondering what’re the best Disney World clothes to wear and what should you add to make sure you have best packing list for Disney World?
If you are planning an April trip, you can expect daily highs between 80 and 85 degrees. April is the best time of year to start swimming in Florida as the water begins to warm up, so remember to bring your bathing suit. You’ll also want to bring a swim cover-up for when you need to walk back to your room, or for when you eat a poolside lunch at your resort’s counter service restaurant.
You’ll be comfortable walking through the parks in April in a light t-shirt and jeans. The most comfortable jeans for walking through the theme parks for me are Signature by Levi Strauss Gold Label. These jeans have a cool vintage look as well as being super stretchy and they have a snug fit so they do not lose their shape. Jeans are not usually my go-to choice for walking around the theme parks, but on a low humidity day, these jeans are very comfortable to wear. It is even nice enough out during the day to wear sandals and show off that new pedicure.
When the sun sets in April though, the temperature takes a dip. You will want to bring a light sweater or jacket with you in the morning when you leave for the theme parks. Even if you do not need it at that time, take it with you. It can be annoying to carry a sweater throughout the park with you all day, that is why the Quikflip 2-in-1 Reversible Backpack might be a good option for you.
The hoodie transforms into a drawstring backpack in seconds. When the hoodie is in bag form, two compartments can hold other items such as your phone, keys, or water bottles. If you don’t have it, you will get chilly and end up spending money on another Disney hoodie you didn’t need. (Although maybe you can never have enough Disney hoodies)
Disney Costumes for Adults
Disney does not allow guests over the age of 14 to dress up in costumes in the theme parks, except during special Halloween events. Whereas little ones are encouraged to wear princess and pirate attire, adults may be asked to leave the park if they come dressed in full Snow White attire. The reason for this is to keep the ‘magic’ alive.
It would be confusing to little ones if they’re in the middle of a photo opportunity with their favorite character, but if you walk by dressed as that character, it will confuse the child as to why there are ‘two’ of said character.
As far as Disney is concerned, there is only one Mickey Mouse, Minnie Mouse, etc. So what are you to do if you are an avid Disney fan and want to show off your favorite character? 10 years ago a Disney Guest made up the term “Disneybounding”. Disneybounding is a subtle way of dressing as your favorite character by using regular clothing items!
For example, a great way to honor Donald Duck without putting on a full-on duck costume is to wear a blue knee-length dress or romper with a white belt and red bow in your hair. It’s as simple and as easy as that. Disneybounding is also a more affordable way to dress as your favorite characters, you can use the items you already have in your closet, this will ensure you have the best packing list for Disney World.
You can read more on what to wear to Disney World in April here.
Snacks to Pack for Disney
Who doesn’t want a tasty snack on a April day in Disney World?
Mickey pretzels, Dole Whips, churros, and popcorn are just a few. Everyone has their favorite Disney snack but imagine if every time you wanted to snack on something you dropped money on a Mickey pretzel. By the end of the first day of vacation, you would be broke.
As amazing as Disney snacks are, they are a luxury that most families can’t possibly afford, especially if they are a family with multiple children. It is always a great idea to bring your own snacks to pack for Disney, even if you are not traveling with children. Do not bring any chocolates or meltable items with you though, unless you want to put those Shout Wipes to use.
Disney does allow you to bring your own snacks and beverages into the theme parks, but they do have guidelines, No glass containers, no loose or dry ice, no alcohol, and the cooler must be 24x15x18 inches, and no bigger. Adding these snacks will help your list become the best packing list for Disney World.
Goldfish Crackers: Healthier than other crackers on the market, Goldfish crackers are both a parent and kid favorite. They don’t leave behind that thick, orange, cheesy residue as other cheese snacks do and their dry crumbs help make for easy cleanup.
Fruit Snacks: Fruit snacks may be the best snack you can pack for Disney because just like Goldfish crackers, they are easy to clean up. They also come in small packages so you can fit a lot of them in your bag. The best part? They come in all of your favorite Disney characters to keep up with the theme for your trip.
Beef Jerky: Definitely not my choice but my boyfriend swears by it. The main benefit of packing beef jerky is that it requires no refrigeration. It also comes in a variety of sizes so they are easy to transport. Beef jerky is also a great source of protein, which you could use after a morning walking around Disney World.
Gogo Squeez Fruit on the Go: These apple-sauce pouches are resealable, so they can be closed up and saved for later, but they do require refrigeration after opening, so make sure you have those ice packs and cooler bag with you too!
Liquid IV: Not only is Liquid IV perfect after a night out, but they work for daily use as well. Liquid IV is an electrolyte powder you mix into your water to help with dehydration. No matter what time of year you visit Disney, staying hydrated is important but during the summer months, Liquid IV can be a necessity.
Gum: I was shocked when I asked where I could buy gum on the property and was told that Disney didn’t sell gum. After I got over the disappointment, I realized how much sense that made. There would be gum on every surface, on top of every trash can, and all over the bottoms of everyone’s shoes. If you are a gum chewer, you will need to bring gum but remember to dispose of it properly!
Shelled nuts: Another great source of protein, shelled nuts are an easy snack to transport around Disney World!
Dried fruit: Dried fruit is a great way to get the healthy nutrients that fresh fruit offers but without all the stickiness. Dried fruit is also a very versatile snack that you could add to the shelled nuts or granola.
Pringles: Even if Pringles aren’t your go-to brand for potato chips, their crash-free packaging makes them the perfect chips for Disney. Plus Pringles comes in a variety of flavors so there is something for everyone.
Pop-tarts: Pop-tarts are great for breakfast on the go! They also serve as a sweet treat for those with a sweet tooth looking for an afternoon pick me up.
Grocery Delivery in Disney World
If you are traveling to Disney World without a car, how are you supposed to get groceries and snacks to your hotel? Since the pandemic, many of us are not familiar with the concept of grocery delivery but before this, Disney has been utilizing grocery delivery for a long time. As a guest, I have only used one service, Garden Grocer, although now Amazon Prime and Walmart+ will deliver to your Disney Resort Hotel.
With Garden Grocer, you order groceries right from their website at least two days before your vacation. The earlier you order the better, as they offer deals and promotions the earlier you book. You then choose a delivery drop-off time, and Garden Grocer will drop off your groceries at the bell stand, where they will store and refrigerate/freeze your items.
You also do not need to be present for the delivery, you can just call for your groceries as soon as your room is ready. We loved Garden Grocer when we would use them, it was an easy, stress-free process. I also worked with many of the Garden Grocer delivery men when I was a Bell Services dispatcher and I can say from the heart that they are wonderful people and they are a great company that helps the Central Florida area.
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