Heading to Disney World? These are the items you should definitely have with you!
Yes, that spirit jersey might look SO perf in your Instagram photo in front of the castle but 10 minutes later, you might find yourself sweating through the thick fabric on a 90-degree day. Those new holiday Crocs might look adorbs walking around the park, but they’re BRAND new and your feet are SCREAMING at you an hour after putting them on. Style doesn’t ALWAYS have to be sacrificed for function, but in Disney World, having gear that makes your life easier (and more comfortable) sure helps. But when it comes to a Disney World vacation, what gear do we really need for the trip? Let’s take a look!
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Florida is nicknamed “the sunshine state,” so it might not come as a surprise to hear that super bright and sunny days are a likely possibility on your trip! When packing for your vacation, be sure to bring at least one pair of sunglasses to make it easier (and more comfortable) to navigate the parks on a sunny day.
When selecting sunglasses for your vacation, you may want to look for polarized lenses, which help reduce glare and make it even easier to see in bright sunlight. You can find sunglasses with polarized lenses in a variety of styles and colors like these SUNGAIT Vintage Round Sunglasses.
Even if you’re not normally one to rock sunnies, your eyes (and your head!) will thank you for having them after a day in the Florida sun!
Also, keep in mind that you could easily lose (or break) your sunglasses in Disney World. We’ve left more than one pair behind in a restaurant before! So, you might want to bring several pairs of inexpensive sunglasses, just in case you lose or accidentally sacrifice a pair to the Yeti on Expedition Everest!
Even if you do decide to splurge on a pair of Mickey Ran-Bans on your vacation, it still helps to have a pair or two from home as a backup!
Currently, all guests age two and older are required to wear a face mask at all times in Disney World, except while actively eating or drinking while socially distanced. This means face masks are definitely a necessity at this point!
We suggest bringing multiple face masks for each day of the trip since you might want to swap one out if it gets sweaty or uncomfortable. We like to bring a few disposable face masks to carry in our park bag as a backup.
In fact, you might want to bring along a few different styles of masks, in case a particular fit of mask starts to rub or cause pressure on your face or ears! Having a handful of disposable masks tucked away just in case is a great idea as well.
We touched on the sunshine already, but rain is another (very) likely possibility in Disney World! Summer is the rainy season in Florida, and thunderstorms pop up nearly every afternoon. Whether you prefer an umbrella, poncho, or rain jacket, stash them in your park bag just in case, even if the forecast doesn’t show rain.
We like to pack our own ponchos for our trip since the ones in the park are super expensive! Spending our cash on an extra Dole Whip or three sounds better than shelling out close to $12 for a Disney poncho!
But if you do find yourself in a tough spot and need to spring for a Disney poncho, save it! When the rain stops, you can fold them up and stash them in a large Ziploc bag inside your park bag — just be sure to lay them out to dry in your room at night so they don’t stay wet and yucky!
And for those will little ones in tow, don’t forget about those stroller covers! These can protect the kiddos from the weather while navigating the parks, and save your stroller from a washout if it’s parked outside while you’re waiting out the rain indoors.
Even if the sky is blue before you head into an attraction, consider popping that stroller cover (or a poncho in a pinch) over your stroller…just in case. It IS Florida, after all, and weather can change in a snap!
Okay, we’ve referenced stashing things in your park bag, but what makes a solid park bag?? We prefer bags that are water-resistant since we often face thunderstorms (and water rides!).
It’s also helpful to have a bag with different sized compartments, like a backpack, to help keep things organized for easier access. This also makes it easier when going through security at the parks.
You should also consider the size that will work best for your needs. If you’re traveling with a family, you might need a large tote bag or backpack to store your essentials. But if you’re traveling solo or with a small group, a smaller bag like a crossbody, fanny pack, or Loungefly might do the trick!
Whatever park bag you choose, it’s important to make sure that the strap(s) are comfortable enough to wear all day!
Comfortable Bottoms — AKA Shorts, Pants, Skirts, Etc.
Chances are, you’ll be walking A LOT in Disney World. Which can lead to some uncomfortable effects if you don’t select the right wardrobe. If you plan on wearing shorts during your visit, opt for a longer cut to prevent chafing!
And as with just about any article of clothing you plan to wear in Disney, make sure you’ve worn them before your trip — and preferably done a ton of walking in them — to make sure they fit comfortably!
Speaking of the dreaded leg rubbing that can occur, we come prepared to protect our thighs! We keep Body Glide stashed in our park bag to help cut down on the friction from all that walking — it can be an absolute lifesaver!
Rub it on your thighs or wherever you’re likely to chafe and reapply as needed throughout the day. Seriously, just about every person we’ve traveled with has been thankful to have this at one point or another.
If you decide to rock a skirt to the parks, we suggest wearing a pair of anti-chafing shorts underneath to save those inner thighs!
When we visit during the cooler seasons, we prefer to wear leggings to the parks (find a pair with pockets!) since they tend to make for more comfortable all-day wear than jeans.
If you do opt for jeans, make sure the pant legs aren’t too long, since you don’t want them dragging on the ground!
Of all the pieces of clothing you wear to Disney, shoes could arguably be the most important — it’s borderline impossible to make it through a day in the parks without comfortable shoes! If you’re a sneakers person, be sure to break your shoes in before your trip to avoid blisters. Look for sneakers that can air-dry pretty quickly just in case those rain showers pop up on you or you got soaked on Kali River Rapids.
And even if your shoes are already broken in, they still might start to rub wrong if your feet aren’t used to walking 10+ miles a day. This is why we bring a backup pair of shoes in case we need to switch things up mid-vacay!
If you’re more of a sandals person, we suggest finding a pair with good support, traction, and straps. We’ve seen plenty of guests (including us!) sliding around the parks in flip flops, which tend to become a slippery hazard as soon as that Florida rain hits.
Since shoes are such an important part of ensuring you have an enjoyable vacation, this is NOT the piece of gear to make impulsive decisions on! Make sure you’ve done the leg-work ahead of time to find shoes that provide comfortable support and fit.
When all else fails with footwear, consider packing some moleskin. Just cut or tear off a piece of this thick adhesive material and apply it almost like a bandaid wherever you’re starting to feel friction. It’ll help stop blisters in their tracks.
We’re all for packing those adorable Minnie Ears and cute character tees for your Disney World vacation. But while those can definitely add extra fun to your experience, the items on this list are a MUST for making it through the day in one piece. So, pack these things in your suitcase first and then, by all means, throw in the personal snoap machine for good measure!
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What tried-and-true gear do you pack for your Disney World trip? Share your must-haves in the comments!