As you read this book and start thinking about how you want to spend your time, be sure to take notes and keep track of which rides, shows, attractions, parades, and activities are of interest to you and the people with whom you'll be traveling. Once you think you know what you want to experience, start planning out the actual days of your trip.
Make sure everyone you're traveling with gets to experience activities that he or she is most excited about. This may mean making compromises or separating at various times. There's no reason why every family member should be dragged to activities that don't interest others. While you'll definitely want to plan some “quality family time,” that time together will be more thoroughly enjoyed if everyone you're traveling with is happy and excited about the activities he or she has experienced during the vacation.
To save yourself a considerable amount of time traveling between theme parks and activities, plan out your itinerary in half-day chunks. Also, try to schedule eating near an area where you will be that day instead of traveling to another area of a property.
Tips for Traveling with Small Kids
The theme parks offer plenty to do for people of all ages, including young children. When traveling with young kids, however, it's important to plan your day to accommodate their needs. For example, plan on arriving at any of the theme parks early in the day, then take a break in the middle of the day for lunch and a nap. Head back to the theme park again later in the day when everyone is rested. Also, be sure to take advantage of stroller rentals at each of the parks. Visiting a theme park requires a lot of walking and kids tire easily.
For two adults who are traveling with younger kids, take advantage of the “Kid Switch” program to save time waiting in lines for rides (For more details on this program see Chapter 5).
Tips for Seniors
Senior citizens should consider pacing themselves when visiting any of the theme parks, since a lot of walking is required. Anyone who tires easily or doesn't enjoy a lot of walking should seriously consider renting a wheelchair. Electronic wheelchairs can also be rented for around $35, and $5 is refundable. Also, wheelchairs have a special line for all attractions. You might also consider arriving at a park early in the morning, exploring for three or four hours, taking several hours to relax in the afternoon, and then venturing back out in the late afternoon or evening for several more hours. Epcot offers the most attractions designed for older guests.
Freezing a few bottles of water the night before and carrying them around in your backpack throughout the day is a smart idea. It keeps the water cold and saves you money. Bottled water prices in the parks can be as high as $3 each.
In addition to a lot of walking, one of the biggest concerns older people should have when visiting the WDW Resort is dealing with the heat and sun. Overexposure to the sun can cause health problems. Be sure to wear plenty of sunblock, a hat, sunglasses, and light clothing that covers your entire body. Also, drink plenty of fluids and rest often. During the afternoon hours (when the weather is the hottest), plan to visit the indoor, air-conditioned attractions.