What to Bring to Disney World in May

What to Bring to Disney World in May
This photo was taken by Michael of Countdown to Magic

Whether it’s your first trip to Disney World, or just your first time visiting in the spring, you may be wondering what to bring to Disney World in May.  And if that’s the case, don’t worry, as we will help you create a packing checklist for every single essential item you’ll need for your upcoming Disney vacation.

What to Bring to Disney World in May

Let’s begin this article be discussing what you’ll likely want to wear for your May vacation, and how these choices will impact what you will ultimately bring to Disney World.

What to Wear to the Parks in May

Now you want to look cute, but let’s face it, comfort is absolutely paramount when spending a majority of your time walking outdoors at a theme park. So, in my view, here are a few notable essentials I recommend adding to your list:

Short Sleeve Shirts and Tanks: While weather is cooler in May, it’s still hot and if you’re not accustomed to higher humidity (I live in the desert where humidity is lower than 10%), consider packing tops made of more breathable fabrics. 

Lightweight Long Sleeve or Jacket: If you’ll be enjoying dinner reservations in one of the resorts, or an indoor, sit-down restaurant, the AC can be pretty chilly compared to the warm temperatures outside. 

Shorts, Pants, & Leggings: Depending on your comfort level and tolerance to warmer weather, it’s not too warm for pants or a good pair of leggings, but plenty warm enough for shorts. I recommend bringing both. 

Sandals & Tennis Shoes: Comfortable sandals are a great option to lounge in your hotel and explore your property. For the parks, I recommend sturdy tennis shoes with good support. If you’re investing in new shoes, I highly suggest breaking them in a week or two prior to your vacation. It can be painful to break in a new pair of shoes in the parks – you will be walking a lot. 

Swimsuit: If you are staying at a Disney resort or plan on visiting the water parks, a swimsuit will come in handy. The weather in May is plenty warm enough to enjoy the pools.

Raincoat: It’s not unrealistic to assume you could get rain during your vacation. It’s a good idea to be prepared and keep an eye on the forecast. 

Hats & Glasses: It’s going to be sunny, and it’s going to be warm, so you’re always going to want to make sure you’re packing the best hats for Disney World. Protect your face and your eyes from the sun, and you can even do so in style! There is no shortage of cute Disney inspired headwear and glasses for all ages.

Costumes

If you’ll be traveling with children, you’ve probably looked into character meet & greets and character dining. If your little ones have a favorite prince, princess or character, they may want to dress up for the special occasion! If your kids like to dress up, I recommend bringing along a costume or two. Keep in mind there are plenty of places to purchase a costume in the parks, but they understandably run on the more expensive side. 

Now, of course, adult guests are not allowed to dress up as Disney characters at the parks (as it no doubt would confuse child guests).  With that said, adults can take part in the fun of Disneybounding, which feels as if it’s growing in popularity. 

Accessories & Essentials

If you’re planning to spend full days in the parks, there are a few accessories and essentials you should consider adding to your list. These are all easy and inexpensive finds that will help make your days in the park more enjoyable. 

Sunscreen: You’ll be exposed to the sun a majority of your day, so be sure to pack your favorite sunscreen and keep it handy to be applied multiple times a day. 

Mister: If you know you or your family are sensitive to higher temperatures, a small mister could be a lifesaver. There are a variety of different types, from pocket sized misters to clip onto your backpack, to hand held misters to lanyard misters. Be sure to remember batteries!

Cooling Towels: These are another simple way to beat the heat. Cooling towels can be purchased in most stores with a sporting goods section. I often purchase mine in packs online . Simply wet your towels and wrap them around your neck to stay cool (cooling towels are designed for this, and don’t excessively drip or get your clothing wet). 

Wet Towelettes & Hand Sanitizer: Over the course of your day, you’ll be grabbing a lot of handrails, door  handles, and pull down lap bars. You may also be snacking, your kids may be enjoying sticky popsicles, and it can be hard to constantly track down a restroom to wash your hands. It’s convenient to have your own hand wipes and sanitizer on hand throughout the day.

Rain Gear: It’s likely you’ll get a little rain at some point, so I recommend bringing an umbrella and ponchos. While these can be purchased in the parks, it’s less expensive to bring them along with you, and store them in your bag and stroller. Storms can come out of nowhere, and you’ll want easy access as opposed to trying to find a store. 

Technology

Depending on the types of experiences you’re hoping to take advantage of, there are a few things you’ll want to consider in regards to the technology you plan to bring along with you.

Smartphone: If you’ll be taking advantage of Genie Plus, you’ll want to have a smartphone where you can download and access the My Disney Experience app

Portable Phone Charger: This is a lifesaver, and must-have on every one of my Disney trips. Between utilizing the apps, roaming the parks and taking photos, my phone tends to hit that dreaded 20% battery charge by early afternoon. 

There are few places in Disney parks to plug in and charge your phone, and many of the cast members will politely ask you to unplug your devices, even if you find an outlet. The last thing you want to happen is for your phone to die midway through your day. 

Bags 

You’ll want to bring along a comfortable bag for your days in the parks to carry your essentials, rain gear, snacks and drinks as well as purchases you may make in the park. Keep in mind that you’ll want to carry bags that will make sense for your day. If you know your whole party will be riding rides, you’ll want to pack a backpack that’s lightweight and easy to store at your feet or under the seat. 

If you’ll be splitting up with members of your party, consider making sure everyone has their own bag with park essentials. When my brother and I were in our late teens, we’d often split up to jump in line for the roller coasters while my parents enjoyed the gift shops or went back to the resort. We made sure to have our own bags with snacks, water and a cell phone. 

These days almost everyone has a camera on their phone. If you’re planning on taking photos with a compact camera or DSLR, consider bringing a sturdy camera bag as well to protect your equipment from the weather conditions.

Traveling with Children: Strollers 

If you have little ones, the long park hours combined with the heat means your kids may not be able to spend all day on their feet, and you may not want to carry them. It’s a good idea to bring a stroller. You can of course bring your own stroller if it fits within Disney’s guidelines. If you don’t own your own, you can also rent a stroller at the parks, rent from a 3rd party to bring to the parks, or buy a new one when you arrive.

Here are a few quick tips when it comes to using a stroller in Disney World:

Stroller dimensions must be no more than 31 inches wide and 52 inches long, and wagons are not permitted.

Strollers must be able to fold on trams and buses. On rare occasions cast members let this slide, but do not count on it.

You will enter through your own security line when entering the parks. While Disney security is as efficient as possible, the line can move slowly. Expect security to check your stroller and any pockets and pouches. 

Bringing your own stroller can be convenient because your kids are familiar with the stroller, may be more comfortable, and you’re likely more experienced in traveling with your own stroller.

On the other side, if you’re flying, will be taking ride shares, or if you know your stroller will be more cumbersome than convenient, it’s a great option to rent in the parks. You can also purchase an inexpensive stroller in the parks for around $40. If this is your first time visiting the parks and you know you’ll be using a stroller, check out this Ultimate Guide to Strollers for tips and tricks to pack the perfect stroller.

When traveling with little ones, be sure to bring plenty of snacks, as well as their favorite blanket, toy, and/or game. This comes in handy if you’re enjoying an outdoor restaurant, waiting for a show or parade to begin, or simply sitting out on a ride. There can be a lot going on in the parks, you’ll likely have a little downtime at some point, and it’s good to plan ahead with a few distractions.

What is the Weather Like in May?

Now let’s take a bit of time to discuss the weather in May. When you think about vacationing in Florida, you may picture warm days, afternoon thunderstorms and high humidity. While this is fairly accurate during the summer months heading into the fall, spring brings far more favorable conditions. 

With summer right around the corner, you can still expect higher temperatures, averaging in the 80’s during the month of May. Temperatures can range from the high 60’s to the high 80’s, however with humidity averaging lower than 50% during this month, days are warm but not unbearable. Rain is possible, but afternoon storms aren’t nearly as prevalent as they are during the summer months.

Conclusion

As I mentioned, May is one of the best times of the year to experience the Disney park. You’ll be there right before the hottest summer months, and enjoy quieter parks before schools are out for the summer. I hope that I’ve given you better insight into what to bring to Disney World in May. Happy traveling!

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