Want to avoid being “that person” in Disney World? Be careful of committing these big no-nos!
We know from experience that it can be easy to get wrapped up in “vacation mode” in Disney World. But despite the fun and lighthearted atmosphere in Disney World, there are still some taboos to be mindful of. Let’s take a look at 10 major Disney World taboos!
Blocking the Fireworks Views
To ensure they get a good view of the show, many guests will stake out their viewing spot wayyyy in advance — sometimes even hours ahead of time for holidays or special events!
Some guests plan their entire day around securing their favorite fireworks viewing spot, so don’t try to push your way through the crowd at the last minute into a spot that blocks the view of other (much more patient) guests!
Also, keep in mind that putting a child on your shoulders or holding up a large tablet to record the show can obstruct the view of the guests behind you. If you have little ones or want to get a good recording of the show, make it a priority to stake out your perfect viewing spot early so visibility isn’t an issue.
Another way to secure a great viewing spot for the fireworks is to splurge on a dessert party (when offered), which includes reserved seating. Some fireworks shows have also included a FastPass option in the past (you know…when FastPass was still being offered). Disney’s FastPass+ system is being replaced with new, paid FastPass-like systems called Disney Genie+ and Individual Attraction Selection.
With Genie+, guests will select the next available time to return and use a ride’s “Lightning Lane” (a.k.a. FastPass lane). Guests will be able to make 1 selection at a time throughout the day. Individual Attraction Selection will allow guests to purchase the ability to use an individual, highly popular ride’s Lightning Lane. Disney has not noted whether any kind of reserved seating for fireworks will return. If some kind of FastPass-like option for fireworks shows returns in the future, it might be yet another option for snagging a spot without camping out hours in advance.
If getting a great spot for the fireworks is your top priority, be sure to plan accordingly and either splurge on an upgrade, snag a FastPass, or stake out your location in advance rather than swooping in and blocking someone else’s view at the last minute!
Being Rude to Cast Members
Cast Members are required to follow a strict set of rules designed to ensure the safety and comfort of all guests. So, if they’re asking you to do something (or not to do something), there’s probably a good reason!
Avoid taking your frustration out on Cast Members. They work hard to create a safe and magical environment for guests, and that includes upholding park rules.
Know your family’s limits! If you sense that you’re going to hit a wall soon, find a place to rest and recuperate or head back to your hotel room for a break to avoid having a meltdown on an unsuspecting Cast Member (or fellow guest). Just remember — they’re not trying to ruin your day, they’re just doing their job to keep you safe.
Drinking Too Much in EPCOT
Since Disney World is a family-friendly place, technically guests should avoid drinking too much anywhere around the Resort. But given the abundance of delicious drink options in EPCOT (especially World Showcase!), this park is probably the most likely place for guests to commit this taboo. Hang out in World Showcase in the evening and you’ll see what we mean. 😉
With that being said, EPCOT’s World Showcase is home to plenty of fun and unique drinks that are worth trying. Just prepare to pace yourself as you taste your way around the pavilions! “Drinking around the world” sounds fun, but when you really lay out drinking 11 drinks in a short span of time, it’s a recipe for disaster.
Break up your alcoholic drinks with snacks and drink PLENTY of water throughout the day to stay hydrated.
It’s also best to make a list of the drinks you want to try in advance to avoid overindulging on impulse drinks along the way!
Ruining the Magic for Other Guests
Speaking of the family-friendly environment, remember that there are tons of little ones around the parks, so tailor your conversations accordingly!
In other words, don’t loudly share stories of people you know who are “friends” with the characters, explain behind-the-scenes secrets of attraction effects, or other similar topics that can spoil the magic for others around you.
While this can obviously have an impact on the kiddos, there are guests of all ages that prefer to be immersed in the storytelling of the parks. Don’t assume that everyone around you wants to “peek behind the curtain!”
Using Explicit Language
Staying on the subject of creating a family-friendly environment, be mindful of the language you use in public places around Disney World.
In fact, both Disneyland and Disney World reference offensive language in their policies. Disneyland’s policy notes that they reserve the right to require a Guest to leave if they are “using profanity or offensive language towards…Cast Members or other Guests,” and Disney World’s policy states that guests should “show common courtesy” by refraining from using profanity directed at other guests or Cast Members.
Even when chatting with your own traveling party, remember that there are TONS of other guests in the parks that could overhear you, so try to keep it G-rated!
Not Following Seating Instructions
In many of the theater shows around Disney World, guests are instructed to move all the way down a row of seats before taking their spot.
But often guests will stop right in the middle of a row instead of filling in all of the available space.
While it’s understandable that everyone wants a good seat, this holds up the seating process, requires other guests to move around you, and can even impact the capacity of the show.
Don’t be “that person” — follow all instructions given by Cast Members and if you reallllllly want a seat close to the middle of the row, try not to be one of the first parties inside of the theater when the doors open for seating to begin.
When Walt Disney was designing Disneyland, he actually performed his own experiment to see how far people would walk with trash in their hands before throwing it on the ground. He used his observations to determine how frequently trash cans needed to be placed to help keep the park clean.
And that dedication to cleanliness has continued in Disney parks to this day. Guests will find plenty of trash cans throughout the parks, so don’t throw your garbage on the ground! With trash cans at practically every turn, there’s really no excuse for littering in Disney World.
If you’re worried about carrying something excessively messy, pack plastic bags in your park bag that you can use to store your garbage until you find a trash can.
Interfering With Wildlife
Disney World doesn’t exist in a bubble (as much as we might like to think it does!), and wildlife CAN find its way into the Resort. Disney World is basically on a swamp, so a LOT of local wildlife call the Most Magical Place on Earth home! If you see any wild animals (gators, snakes, birds, etc.), DO NOT try to touch them. They’re just as dangerous as they are outside of Disney World!
Also, don’t feed any of the animals you may spot…yes, even those adorable Disney ducks! This can mess with their natural diet and it could make them more likely to approach humans in the future.
Basically, if you see a wild animal, leave it alone. If you really want to interact with an animal, check out the Affection Section at Disney’s Animal Kingdom!
Being Inappropriate to the Characters
When interacting with the characters around Disney World, treat them with courtesy and respect.
And that means guests should ABSOLUTELY avoid any inappropriate touching or lewd comments towards any of the characters. Believe it or not, this is WAY more common than it should be!
Character attendants accompany the characters to help manage meet-and-greets in the parks, so someone WILL be there to spot inappropriate behavior, which could even result in a guest being asked to leave the park.
Accessing Restricted Areas
Around Disney World, there are “backstage” areas that only Cast Members are allowed to enter. And these areas are off-limits for a reason! Most importantly, there could be serious safety risks with accessing areas not meant for guests.
Even if a backstage area doesn’t contain something dangerous, it’s definitely NOT worth getting kicked out of the park over. Disney works to deliver all of the magic where guests can see it (“on-stage”) so there’s nothing exciting enough backstage worth getting banned — or injured — over.
If you really want to get a glimpse backstage, there are some tours that will take you there, so splurge on one of those for a (legal) peek behind the curtain.
Just because Disney World is the Most Magical Place on Earth doesn’t mean it’s a free-for-all. All of these ten taboos are frowned upon, and some could even get you kicked out of the park! The next time you’re on vacation, be mindful of these no-nos to help keep everyone safe and happy…including yourself!
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What other tips do you know for avoiding these Disney World taboos? Let us know in the comments!