How to Conquer a Day at Disneyland: Tips From an Annual Passholder

Once upon a time, you were daydreaming of the perfect day at the happiest place on Earth, Disneyland. A magical land where all worries go away and adulting doesn’t exist. However, the evil queen burst your Mickey shaped bubble and added outrageous prices, extremely long lines, overcrowding, and stress into the mix. But don’t be scared, I’m here to give you the ultimate Disneyland tips and tricks to make all your dreams come true! Once you start doing Disney like an annual pass holder, you’ll never feel lost in the park again. Whether it’s your first time at Disneyland or your 300th time, these tips are the simple bare necessities to ensure that you will have the most magical day at the happiest place on Earth! 

Use the Map, It's on the App!

Ah, isn’t technology just the best? Well maybe not always, but in this case, yes! Thank you Disney for creating the Disneyland app. If there is one ultimate thing you must do if you want to easily navigate Disneyland, it is download the app. This app has a detailed animated map of both Disneyland and California Adventure, with live up-to-date wait times for every ride. This is super helpful because you can always see how long the lines are and go to the rides with the shortest ones! In addition to wait times, it also tells you where the characters are if you want to meet them and details about the entertainment events, such as parades, live music, fireworks, special shows, and more. You can also scan your ticket into the app so you don’t have to worry about losing it and make dinner reservations all in the same place. Hakuna Matata will be your philosophy when you use the app!

Maximize Your Experience With the…

MaxPass! The Disneyland MaxPass is the ultimate tool for the perfect day at Disneyland. The MaxPass is $15 per day, per ticket, and it is so worth it! With the MaxPass you are able to make Fastpass selections right from your phone. That’s right, the days of walking all the way to Space Mountain, putting your ticket in a machine, getting a paper Fastpass, and then not returning back to the ride for 6 hours are O-V-E-R, people! Disney has given us the convenience of selecting any Fastpass we want and keeping track of all of them in the app. You also get the PhotoPass with the MaxPass, which gives you unlimited, yes I said unlimited, downloads of all photos taken on rides and by professional photographers. It allows you to capture and save all your magical moments all day long. This is what dreams are made of! 

Don’t Wait in Lines, Check the Times

Speed, you are speed. Always stay on top of your Fastpass selections and ride wait times! With the MaxPass you are able to get a Fastpass every hour and a half and once you use a Fastpass, you can get a new one! Also check when there will be events or shows happening. If you don’t want to watch the shows or parades, these are great times to ride the rides because most traffic in the park will be at the shows. That means that you should also avoid walking through the areas having events to save some time. With these tips you’ll be as fast as Lightning McQueen around the park. KaChow! 

Keep the Change...In Your Pocket

Not only is the ticket to Disneyland expensive, but the food, snacks, and $5 water really add up throughout the day. A great way to save money is to bring your own food and a reusable water bottle. There are water stations and water fountains throughout both parks where you can fill up your water bottle. But if you’re like me and only like cold water with ice, I have the ultimate hack for you. Any restaurant will give you a free water cup that you can then pour into your reusable water bottle and have fresh cold water all day, without the germs of the water fountain! I like to pack PB&J sandwiches and all types of snacks to keep me full and save money throughout the day. But if you’re going to eat at the parks, the best dinner deal is at the Jolly Holiday Cafe in Disneyland. For just $10.19 you can order the “Jolly Holiday Combo” and get a deliciously cheesy grilled cheese sandwich and tomato basil soup. As Pooh would say, there’s a rumbly in my tumbly just thinking about it!

While We’re Hungry…

There is nothing worse than getting hungry after countless hours of running around Disneyland, only to have to stand in an extremely long line just to get food. Thankfully, those days are long gone! In the Disneyland app there is a feature that will become your best friend. Drum roll please... Mobile Ordering! You can now mobile order and pay for food right from your phone and have it waiting for you when you arrive at the restaurant. It’s that easy! 

Leave Your Glass Slippers at Home

Southern California, it must be perfect sunny weather all the time, I’ll never get cold, right? ...Wrong. Although most days at Disneyland are sunny and beautiful, the temperature can rapidly change throughout the day, even in the summer. Since Disneyland is close to the ocean, the fog and mist tend to roll in during the morning and nighttime. Then it gets blistering hot during the day and freezing as soon as the sun starts going down. My best piece of advice to handle this is to wear layers! It’s always better to be prepared than to be freezing. Disneyland offers lockers for $7 per day where you can keep your jackets when you don’t need them. In addition to layers, wear comfortable shoes! I know we all want to be stylish and show off our shiny glass slippers, but it’s better to be comfortable than stylish as far as shoes go. Grab your sneakers and get ready to take on the day! 

Disney is a magical place where dreams truly do come true. For people ages one to 101 there’s fun to be had and memories to be made at the parks. Walt Disney had a dream to create a place where children and adults alike could come together and enjoy a day of good, innocent fun. He created a world of imagination, hopes, and dreams. I hope these tips can be helpful in guiding you through your next trip to the Mouse’s House, and help you realize that Disneyland isn’t as overwhelming as it can seem! It truly is a small world after all…

Images via Giphy