December is one of the most popular times to visit the Disney Parks and Resorts. And according to pretty much every single Disney World crowd calendar, it’s also one of the busiest times to visit too.
Of course, with so many amazing holiday and seasonal events, like Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party, it’s not hard to see why. Plus, many schools here in America and other countries have vacations during the last half of December, making the influx of crowds a lot higher.
The weather in December is another reason why this month is so popular for Disney guests. Its mild and pleasant temperatures make park touring a lot more comfortable and cool.
So, with that said, how do you go about packing for Disney World in December? With some many activities happening, and the weather cooling off considerably, what should (and shouldn’t) you take the time to pack inside your suitcase? Well, in this article, I’m going to examine this very question with the hope that you’ll be able to take action and make sure your family is properly packed for what will be a fun and memorable vacation!
The Weather in December
A lot of guests who are not familiar with Florida weather may not know that December can still be fairly warm but also have some cooler temperatures. The average temperatures in Central Florida during the day is in the mid-70’s degrees Fahrenheit. This is pretty warm to anyone come from a winter weather environment — though many Floridians would find this weather to be cold.
In the mornings or evenings, expect the lows to be in the mid to high-50’s. This means you’ll want to pack a lot of clothes that can be worn in layers. This includes jeans, slacks, long sleeve shirts, and sweaters or light sweatshirts.
When it comes to packing clothes for your trip in December, we recommend packing a good combination of both winter and warmer weather clothing. This is because the temperatures in Central Florida can change a lot from the morning and night to the afternoon.
Pack a good amount of jeans, slacks, capris, and long sleeve shirts. You can, of course, always bring shorts and t-shirts. Though, we would recommend skipping tank tops, unless the weather forecast predicts an unseasonably warm December.
Because December can be quite chilly at certain points in the day, you’ll want to make sure you pack several pairs of sneakers or tennis shoes. This is because you want to keep your feet warm and comfortable throughout the day. If you need to, bring some heavier cotton socks too to help with any cooler temperatures.
We recommend you bring shoes that you’ve had for a bit, instead of new shoes. That way you don’t end up with any blisters or other foot injuries while on vacation. Sandals may be a bit too cool for the weather in December. But, if you decide to bring a few pairs, make sure they are ones that are good for hiking and walking.
Believe it or not, the Disney resort pools, and most pools in Florida, are heated. This means you can get some pool time in, even if it’s a bit cool outside. With this in mind, pack one to two bathing suits per person if you plan on swimming at all during your trip in December.
If you aren’t sure you’ll be swimming, pack at least one swimsuit just in case. If you don’t pack swim gear, you may be able to find swimsuits at local stores. But, since December is technically winter in Florida, you may not have a great selection.
Outerwear and Other Accessories
With cool temperatures in the mornings and evenings, you’ll want to make sure that you pack some “winter” gear. And, if you’re coming from a wintery climate already, chances are pretty high that you’ll already be bringing a winter coat along for the trip. But, packing doesn’t mean just clothing. Here are some other things you’ll want to think about bringing with you during the winter months at Disney.
- Light Jackets:
December’s temperatures can get down into the mid-50’s. So, bringing a light jacket or some hooded sweatshirts can be a great way to stay warm when it’s slightly chilly without being too hot or bulky.
- Hats and Mittens:
It can get downright cold at night at Disney. If you’re staying at a park late to catch the fireworks, nighttime parades, or enjoy extra magic hours, chances are your hands and head may get a bit cold. Bringing light gloves and hats can help keep you toasty warm while enjoying all the nighttime entertainment Disney has to offer. If you have kiddos, this is a must bring item for your trip.
- Ponchos and Umbrellas:
If you have space, consider bringing ponchos or a small umbrella with you if the weather is predicting a lot of rain on your trip. Of course, even if you don’t have space for these, you can easily pick up ponchos in the parks themselves, at your resort, or a local store too. It’s not very rainy in December, so if you are limited on space, skip packing these.
This is one of our favorite must pack items for winter weather. A small blanket stored in your backpack or stroller can be perfect for bundling up at night while waiting for a parade or firework.
Of course, you can’t forget sunscreen — even in December. Having sunscreen on hand for your trip is a must-do.
Packing List for Young People
When it comes to packing for your children and young adults, you’ll want to think about a few other additional considerations bringing the essentials. Here are some things you’ll want to think about packing for kiddos and teenagers that include a few particular considerations for December park touring.
- ID Tags or Card:
While we don’t ever want to think about something scary like losing our children in a theme park, it can happen. Having an ID tag or card on hand is a way that you can help identify your children to Disney cast members and provide contact information on how to best reach you while you’re at the Disney theme parks.
- Disney themed clothes:
Kids love wearing their favorite Disney themed clothes when they’re at Disney. Let them pick out some of their favorites, so they have something fun to wear every single day you’re on vacation. Because December is a generally cooler month, do pack long sleeves or layers for any t-shirts you might have. For younger children, Disney theme tights or leggings can be a great way to wear Disney clothes while staying warm too.
Many children want to dress like their favorite princesses, prince, or pirate. Disney’s character dining locations are some of the best places to eat in Disney World with kids. And having them dress up for the experience makes it even more magical for them. With this in mind, you can pack a costume or two for the trip. But, since December is cold, you may want to bring a sweater or jacket for any dress or costume that won’t keep your child as warm during the winter months in the parks. This way, when the weather warms up during the day, they can easily remove the jacket.
- Dress up clothes:
If you are planning on going to any signature dining locations, you may want to consider bringing a few fancier clothes for your kiddos. They don’t have to be too fancy either. Just something that will look nice for the meal. Since it’s December pack slacks, tights, or other easy to pack warm clothes.
- Favorite toys:
There’s no doubt that children get used to their favorite toys. So, don’t forget to pack their favorite doll, stuffed animal, or toys for the trip.
- Wet Naps:
Park touring can get messy. Whether they get dirty playing or make a mess with a Mickey Bar, having some wet naps on hand is a good idea for all ages, but especially for kiddos.
- ID Cards:
Do make sure your teenagers have their IDs on them at all times. This is especially important if they are park touring without adults.
- Deodorant, Face Wash, and Personal Care Items:
You’ll want to make sure that your young adults bring the personal care items that they need. This includes deodorant, face wash (especially for those suffering from acne), and even feminine hygiene products. This way they’ll feel comfortable having all the things they need without having to run to a store during the trip.
- Phones, Headphones, Phone Chargers:
Most young adults like having their technology handy. So, do make sure that they’ve packed headphones, phone chargers, and any other technology they need for the trip.
Chances are your teenagers may go on an attraction or park tour on their own. If this is the case, make sure they bring a back to pack all their essentials in when they arrive at the theme parks.
Young adults will likely have a lot of the same packing needs adults do, but these additional items are definitely some things that you’ll want to make sure they pack for the trip.
December can be a wonderful month to visit the Disney Parks and Resorts. The weather is mild, but warm, and there are plenty of seasonal and holiday events happening to enjoy. To keep you and your family warm during the chilly hours and cool during the warmer hours of your park touring, be sure to pack a good mix of warm and cooler weather clothes. This will help ensure you have a magical vacation from the moment you arrive at the happiest place on earth.
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