Every aspect of a Disney World vacation requires at least a little bit of planning. For some people, the planning can be almost as fun as the trip itself! One thing that is often left out of the planning process is packing.
Everyone believes they know how to pack, and that might be the case in most situations, but packing for Disney World requires just as much forethought and planning as evert other part of your trip. Packing properly can make a huge difference in how enjoyable your vacation ends up being.
Disney World is always fun, but with such a fast-paced and nonstop vacation, packing the right things becomes even more important. There are plenty of things that you should always pack for Disney, and then there are other things that are more seasonal and only truly necessary at specific times of the year.
In order to pack successfully for your Disney World vacation, you need to make sure you review both types of necessities. Some of the best Disney tips involve packing.
What You Should Always Pack for Disney World
There are some basic things that always need to be part of your packing list for a Disney World vacation. There are obvious things, necessary toiletries, but the list you should follow while packing for your Disney World vacation goes beyond that. There are many things that probably won’t even cross your mind if it Is your first trip to Disney World.
Following this list will make everything more enjoyable for you.
Even the best planned trip is bound to have a few unexpected curveballs thrown in, and preparation is key. If you pack these essentials, you’ll be better prepared for even the most unexpected things to come your way.
Portable Phone Charger – It is almost unthinkable to leave your house without a phone nowadays, but when you’re at home, you always have a charger close by, whether it be in another room, or in your car. The problem with that while you’re on vacation in Disney World is that you are not going to be spending much time close to an outlet where you can charge your phone.
In addition to that, you will be using your phone a lot more than you might expect. This is not the kind of vacation that allows you to completely “unplug” because of the newer Disney technology. Disney’s My Disney Experience is key to planning your vacation before you leave home, but it is necessary in the parks as well.
The app is where you can make and change reservations and Fastpass+ plans. Having your phone fully charged will make it easier to keep track of all of your plans, and the other members of your travel party. Of course, along with your portable charger, make sure you have a smartphone that is compatible with the app.
Moleskin – This might not be something you are familiar with, but a Disney vacation involves a lot of walking. It tends to be more walking than most people do in an average day. Lots of walking, especially when you are not used to walking miles a day, can result in blisters. A blister can really make enjoying your vacation difficult.
Putting moleskin in places that either have a blister, or feel like they have a blister forming, will make walking for the rest of the day, and the days to follow, a lot more comfortable. Rather than hobble around for part of your vacation, using some moleskin will allow you to walk comfortably.
Body Glide – Runners swear by Body Glide. This is sold in sticks that resemble deodorant, and prevents chaffing. Using this in places that tend to rub together will make walking more comfortable.
One place that people feel is helpful to put Body Glide is on the soles of your feet. This works well in conjunction with the use of moleskin and on its own.
Moisture-wicking socks – It is important to keep your feet dry and comfortable on your trip. If you run into wet weather, you’ll want socks that won’t stay drenched for the entire day. Also, moisture-wicking socks help make your feet more comfortable.
Whether your feet are wet from the elements, a ride on Splash Mountain, or sweating, you’ll be glad to have comfortable, moisture-wicking socks.
Band-aids –It might seem a little redundant if you are also packing moleskin, but it is never a bad idea to pack band-aids. They are easy to carry with you in the parks, and can come in handy. They are easier to use in a pinch than moleskin.
The simple things are sometimes also the easiest to forget, but the hardest to get by without. If you forget to bring these things, you will definitely survive your vacation, and there are stores nearby, but it is more likely that you will run into problems along the way. A blister can make your trip uncomfortable and pain can be very distracting. Disney World has so many details to absorb and pay attention to, that it would be a shame to miss.
What to Pack for Kids
Kids require a special packing list of their own. There are plenty of things that kids need that overlap with what adults need, but their special needs cannot be overlooked. For many people, a trip to Disney World is all about the kids. It is easy to assume that all of their needs will be met just by being at Disney World, but that isn’t the case. Being prepared for a meltdown before they even happen can go a long way to making the vacation even better.
The things kids require can be tricky. The following list will help make sure you don’t forget some of the most important things for your kids.
Autograph Book – These are sold everywhere. It will give your kids a free souvenir to hold onto and show off when they get home. This allows kids to take a piece of their favorite characters home. Character interactions are great with or without autographs, but kids enjoy getting to have something to take away to prove they met Mickey or Donald. An autograph is personal, and loved by kids of all ages.
Pennies and Quarters – All around Disney World, you will see penny press machines. Putting a penny and quarter in, will allow your child, or you, to pick a design for the penny, and turn a lever. At the end of turning the lever, a newly pressed penny will pop out of the machine. This is a cheap and unique souvenir for your child to bring home.
There is no reason to go to crazy with souvenir purchases in the stores when the kids get to make their own, unique penny to bring home. It is a great collector’s item, and your child may enjoy running up to the machines they find in each park.
Glow Sticks – At every parade, there will be vendors trying to sell you and your kids light up wands, glow sticks, necklaces, and many other glowing objects your child will have a hard time resisting. If you pack some from home, it will likely prevent a meltdown when you refuse to buy them.
If you do buy them at the park, it will also cost a lot more money than anything you bring from home. Saving a little bit of money, and preventing a meltdown with the same item you packed, will make things go a lot more smoothly.
Portable Snacks – Food surrounds you at Disney World. Popcorn vendors, pretzels, ice cream bars, they are all available almost instantly when you are at Disney World. Sometimes, you are waiting in line and you just can’t walk over to the nearest snack stand, but the kids are starving.
Having a small bag of fruit snacks, popcorn, chips, or whatever your go-to non-refrigerated snack is, will save them from the hunger, and you from the whining.
Activity Books – Disney World is full of action! And it can also be a test of everyone’s patience. Lines can be long and boring. Waiting for meals to be served can sometimes take a little longer than kids want to sit still. Time spent on the Disney bus can be tedious, and it feels like it takes forever to get from the resort to the park.
Personalized backpacks – Letting your kids carry their own belongings while you are on vacation will help take some of the burden off of you, and let them take a little bit of responsibility. A personalized backpack will give your kids something to show off a bit of who they are and what they love. There are a lot of kids running around with personalized t-shirts, which are a great option, but a backpack serves two purposes.
Packing for the Weather
People think of Florida, and they assume the weather will be hot and humid no matter when they visit. Although Florida is called the sunshine state, it isn’t entirely accurate. October is the month when things tend to start changing in Florida. The end of summer is hot and humid, but as October approaches, the temperatures and humidity both reduce. Packing the right things for the weather will go a long way.
Ponchos- Although October is a month that sees reduced rainfall, there is always a chance of rain in Florida. Florida is known for midday downpours that will leave you soaked to the bone. It is a little less likely that you will see one of these in October, but being prepared is a good idea. There are ponchos sold everywhere in Disney World, but by the time you get one, your clothes will be soaked and you will likely be uncomfortable for the rest of the day.
A Windbreaker– The temperatures are cooling off, and it is a good idea to have a light jacket at the ready for the time you spend outside in the evening. Layers are always a good idea, and a windbreaker is the perfect way to keep both the breeze and the rain from bothering you. Comfort is key.
Sunscreen-Even if the temperatures are getting slightly cooler, the sun is still there. Florida, regardless of the passing rainstorms and cloudy weather it often has, tends to live up to its nickname. The Sunshine State is a place that always requires sunblock!
Waterproof sneakers- You’ll want to keep your feet dry and comfortable during you trip. Feet are more important than we tend to think about when getting ready for a vacation. With waterproof sneakers, you are less likely to have to walk around in wet socks after the rain. Puddles and downpours are less than ideal, so it is a good idea to do everything you can, within reason, to make sure your feet stay dry.
The weather is a big obstacle for any vacation. Disney World vacations can be hampered by less than ideal weather that you are unprepared for. There is nothing you can do about the weather, and all of the Disney magic in the world can’t guarantee great weather while you are on your vacation.
The packing list for the type of clothes you’re going to take in October can seem a little overwhelming at first. However, the fact is that it really does not have to be as complicated as what you think. October is an absolutely beautiful time in central Florida, providing comfortable temperature and weather for everything.
Those who hate hot weather don’t have to worry about sweating like crazy, and those who hate to be cold don’t have to worry about freezing during the day and night. It is a perfect compromise for everyone in your party. October reaches a high of eighty five degrees fahrenheit and a low of sixty-five degrees fahrenheit in October, so layers are my huge suggestion to you.
You should be packing outfits that you can go all day in, weather the temperature rises or drops suddenly during the day and evening. The secret to this is definitely layers. In the mornings and evenings, the temperature is known to drop, and you will need a light jacket, sweater, or cardigan to put on over your shirt. I do not suggest wearing a long sleeved shirt because it will more than likely be hot during the day.
Some people can’t stand the heat at all and will even put on a tank top underneath their shirt to wear. In my experience, I was able to wear a t-shirt during the day, and I brought a jacket with me for the mornings and evenings. I was super comfortable the entire day.
As for the bottom layers, whatever you are most comfortable goes for this too. Make sure you are comfortable, so if you are wearing jeans or long pants of any sort, make sure you will not be too hot. If you do this, maybe wear a t-shirt that day, or if you are wearing a long sleeve, you can go ahead and wear shorts or skirts that day.
Leggings are also an option as well. I’ve worn leggings multiple times in the parks during this time and at the beginning of the year (the coldest times of the year for central Florida) and I was able to walk around efficiently and comfortably all day without burning up or freezing. For shoes, the exact same advice goes for them as well. The amount of walking you are going to be doing is extensive, whether or not you think it will be.
Even if you’re used to walking around all the time for whatever reason, your feet will be more than likely be pounding by the end of the day. Your shoes should have amazing support for your feet. If you wear shoes that have no cushion or support for you arches at all, that is your choice. However, your feet will probably start to hurt sooner than later.
Be sure to bring some nicer clothes just in case your party decides to take part in any Disney signature dining. Some places are more nice and might require a little more than tennis shoes and a t-shirt. Check out some of these tips for more on clothes specifically in October.
Whatever you decide to wear, just make sure it is something that you can walk around in all day, going from place to place while also stopping from time to time. As amazing and fun as Walt Disney World trips are, they can be exhausting, but in a good way!
Here comes one of my favorite parts! This part kind of goes along with the clothing that you should be packing for October. One of my favorite things to do before a Disney trip is plan out my outfits and accessories with them, such as mouse ears, hats, jewelry, etc. When planning which accessories to bring with you, think about the time of year you are going to Disney. In October, it is right in the middle of autumn, so you probably are going to want a lot of fall and Halloween themed mouse ears and outfits.
One of my favorite things to do is Disneybounding. Adults are not allowed to dress up as characters in the park, so they wear an outfit that is inspired by a disney character. A lot of times, mouse ears add to their outfit. For instance, one of my favorite Disneybounding outfits is the Haunted Mansion, so I will wear my Haunted Mansion mouse ears, shirt and skirt all together.
This Disneybounding is perfect for Halloween time because it is the Haunted Mansion! Some guests will be Disney villains to add a spooky vibe to their day.
I’ve seen multiple fall themed mouse ears and t-shirts on online shops and also in the Disney parks themselves. Something else that is on online shops and can also be a Disney World souvenir if you so choose, are Disney bags! The amount of Disney themed bags with a fall or Halloween twist are endless, and there is something for everybody out there. More details will be given later, but a bag is something you should definitely pack for your trip.
You’re going to need a bag while you’re in the parks for everything you carry around with you. This is an absolute must, so don’t think that you won’t need to take anything with you during the day. Having a bag that is Disney-themed is way more fun than a normal bag in Disney World, believe me. You wouldn’t think it is, but it is.
Keep in mind that accessories that you bring do not necessarily have to be themed around the season. You can do whatever you want to do. Sometimes people do not think they need accessories at all. I’ve known a few people who said they would feel silly if they wore mouse ears or anything Disney themed while they were in the parks. But then, they went on their trip, and by the end, they were all decked out in Disney gear.
There is something extra special and magical about being all decked out in Disney gear and walking around the parks. It adds just a little extra pixie dust. That being said, you do not have to go around in autumn themed accessories; it just adds to the experience.
Everywhere you look in the parks, especially the Magic King and EPCOT, fall and Halloween are represented in every corner. While you’re at Disney World, wearing something in the spirit of the season just adds to your trip.
It is one of my favorite things to do, but you might be someone who is not into it and might want to wear something else that has nothing to do with the season. There is no judging whatsoever; who cares if you wear pastel mouse ears in October, then you go for it! You might be someone who does not even want to dress up at all, and that is okay too!
A Day in the Park
One of the most important parts of your trip is to always figure out what you are going to bring with you in your bag to the parks. If you plan on being in the parks all day, which most people do, then you’re going to need a bag full of everything that you are going to need that day.
One of the biggest mistakes is when guests say that they don’t need to bring anything to the parks at all. What should you be bringing to the parks? A variety of things, such as:
- Hand sanitizer
- Extra snacks
- Water bottle
- Autograph book
- Map of the park
- Extra cameras
Pretty much whatever you feel you will need throughout the day, have it in your bag! I always bring a water bottle with me so I do not have to keep buying water throughout the day. Disney is awesome, but let’s face it, it is expensive. I don’t want to have to pay four dollars for a water bottle every single time I’m thirsty.
Soft drinks and other drinks can be even worse. A water bottle is good to have so that you can continue to fill it up throughout the day without having to buy bottles, and also, it is being a friend to the environment. This way, you do not have to add to the trash bins with all of your water bottles.
The same idea goes for extra snacks in your backpack. This is also an absolute must! In my experience, it has always saved me money when I bring my own snacks with me. Remember earlier, when we talked about having a breakfast or protein bar for breakfast on your way out the door rather than going to sit down and eat breakfast every morning?
This is exactly what I am talking about. In my opinion, it is easier to snack throughout the day (with some quick service meals) rather than sitting down for every meal every day of your vacation. If you bring most of these snacks, the amount of money you save will be amazing, not to mention it is also a time saver.
If you are a first timer to Walt Disney World, you’re going to want to experience it as much as you possibly can, doing as much as you possibly can. A lot of times that does not include sitting down for all three meals every single day of your vacation.
Honestly, I do not know anyone who has gone on a Disney World vacation and sat down for all three meals. It takes up too much time when you could be munching on a snack you brought with you instead of waiting in line for another meal or a snack. You are not going to want to wait in line, especially at mealtimes.
Hand sanitizer is a must for obvious hygiene reasons, and band-aids are always a must for bags just in case. These things should always be carried around with you no matter where you go. In a public park, where you will be touching so many surfaces, eating food, and sharing space with thousands of other people, hand sanitizer is a barrier that is necessary to have.
With Band-aids, there is always the chance of a cut or a scrape no matter where you are at. Though Disney is there for you with whatever you need right away (they have First-Aid stations in the parks), you have something to take care of it yourself, just in case.
October is an interesting time to travel to Disney World. The weather is tricky, and kids have special needs for traveling. There are some things you need to make sure you have specifically for a trip in October.
Visiting Disney World in October gives you a chance to experience some special events that you would miss out on at different times of the year. It is easy to remember to pack special, seasonal objects closer to Christmas, but Halloween is a big deal at Disney World as well!
Your Favorite Hocus Pocus Shirt – The beloved Disney movie, Hocus Pocus, is a big part of Disney World in October. There are very few times of the year that you will be encouraged to wear your love for the movie out in the open.
Whether you love the Sanderson sisters, Max, or had your first crush on Thackery Binx, you will find people who feel the same at Disney World. Showing your love for this movie is encouraged and will make for great pictures around the park.
A Costume – If you are at Disney World in October, you might want to head to Mickey’s Not So Scary Halloween Party one night. Kids and adults are encouraged to dress up in their best Halloween costume. Don’t pack a mask, but everything else will work well. Face paint and a well-designed costume will be perfect.
You won’t want to miss the amazing photo-ops at the party. Wearing a costume is a great way to have a little extra fun. Adults love to dress up, too! Embrace your inner child and go for it! Don’t leave it behind, especially if you are thinking you’ll be the only adult in costume. You will regret it!
A Trick-or-Treat Bag – When you get to Mickey’s Not So Scary Halloween Party, you will be given a bag to use for trick-or-treating, but it is a good idea to pack your own. The bags you pack from home will probably be a little bigger than the ones you are given.
In addition, if you take the time to make personalized bags for everyone in your travel party, there will be no confusion or arguing over which bag belongs to whom. Keeping them straight will be easy, and fighting will be reduced if you pack your own bags.
Matching Halloween Shirt s– Finding matching t-shirts is a fun way to make you’re the photos from your vacation even more memorable. Choosing a Halloween theme for the shirts will help highlight the time of year you visited, and put a little bit of spirit in all of your pictures.
Halloween is not a holiday to overlook when you are at Disney World. It is a fun way to bring a little personalization and creativity to your vacation, and as a result, to your vacation photos.
It is easy to think that once you have visited Disney World, you know everything. You are definitely more prepared than going in blind, but there are other things to keep in mind.
Once you have visited Disney World, it is likely that you picked up some essential items along the way. Don’t forget to take those along, and remember to bring some new things that will make your trip feel like a totally new experience.
Mickey Ears – Mickey Ears are an important accessory when you are at Disney World. You want to wear the ears that show a little bit about you. What it shows might be your favorite character, your profession, your recent graduation, or your birthday celebration.
It doesn’t hurt to buy a new pair when you go back, but it is also an awesome feeling to walk into the parks for the first day wearing the ears already.
Pin Trade Lanyard – If you participate in pin trading, you don’t want to leave your pins and lanyard behind when you get to the parks. Make sure you pack them so you don’t have to skip participating in the fun of pin trading, or purchase all new pins.
Save yourself some time, money, and heartbreak by making sure you pack the pins you already have.
Your Favorite Disney Themed Sweatshirt – Evenings in October will be cooler than some may expect, so it is a good idea to pack your favorite Disney sweatshirt. It is smart to bring that along. Cool weather leaves guests in need of a little bit of warmth and relief.
Bringing your Disney sweatshirt will help you in the moment, and avoid having to spend the money on another sweatshirt or jacket. If you have already been to Disney World, you should take advantage of all of the things you have already purchased so you can save yourself a little time and money.
Traveling to Disney World after you have already been there is a little less daunting. You know what to expect, for the most part, but you still need to be prepared. Follow the general packing list, but don’t forget to take all of the things you already have.
Once you have packed all of your things for Disney World, double checked your list, and are anxiously awaiting your vacation, take a deep breath! There is a great adventure ahead of you. If you have packed all of the things that are needed to make sure you are extra prepared for every situation, you will definitely have a magical vacation.
Vacations that are not well-planned and packed for are usually memorable for all the wrong reasons. Make sure your vacation is memorable for the right reasons. Remember the smiles and giggles, not the tears and pain!
To recap, there are several different things you need to pack for. Pack for your everyday needs. Disney World vacations are active. You need to be prepared for the physical impact that will have on you. Get ready for tired feet! You’ll also need to pack especially for your kids. You need to be prepared to avoid meltdowns.
There are a lot of things kids need, and knowing them in advance will make things go smoothly. If you want to celebrate Halloween while you are at Disney World, remembering your costumes and special holiday gear will go a long way. It will be very disappointing for everyone if you forget the costumes at home. Arriving in Florida, fully prepared, will go a long way.
And, of course, if you’ve been to Disney before, don’t think you know everything already. Take the time to have a detailed packing list and double check that you have taken everything you need. Just because the weather was perfect for your last trip, does not mean it will be for your next trip. Weather is unpredictable.
It all boils down to preparing. If you prepare ahead of time, you are less likely to run into situations you can’t handle. Having Packing lists is the best way to plan a Disney Vacation.
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