Packing for DisneyWorld can be a daunting task. I don’t know how many times I’ve done it in the last few years (30+ at least), but every time I make a checklist or consult someone else’s packing list. Why? Because I hate forgetting things. Even the most experienced Disney fanatic can forget a few crucial items on those trips. So here’s a very specific sort of Disney Packing List (you won’t find socks or underwear on it!), but rather shares all the things the experienced Disney traveler (hoarder) Might want to remember on their next trip.
- Pins! Regardless of how you carry them – in a binder, on your lanyards, on a cork board – you want to remember to bring your pins. Most resorts have dedicated pin trading times in their community halls (especially around DVC properties) and it’s an easy thing to forget. My kids love pin trading even when they’re just trading amongst each other.
- Squirt bottle and fan. I know you’ve bought it before. It’s been an absolutely, horrifically hot day and you’re sweltering in the Florida heat. You cave and buy one of those large part-fan, part-squirt bottles with Mickey and friends on it. Or, you’re ahead of the game and bought your own on Amazon for $1. Either way, unless it’s January (and even still sometimes in January), you are going to want to remember it.
- Umbrella. I’m sure you’ve had that moment when a Florida storm rolled in and, again, you caved and bought the poncho or the umbrellas. Just set them aside or keep a set packed for Disney trips.
- Ears. Our kids are obsessed with collecting ears (okay, it’s mostly my daughter), but we had to establish a “One new set of ears per trip” rule a couple of trips ago because it was getting out of hand. Now, between her ears and mine, we have a collection lofty enough to have ears on each day and not repeat them.
- Disney shirts. Whether it’s a custom shirt for your family vacation or reunion or just a shirt with Mickey and Minnie on it, you probably have a collection of Disney apparel that you (realistically) don’t wear at home. I may not have a formal office, but my Cinderella shirts aren’t quite workplace-appropriate so I keep them packed and neatly rolled.
- Autograph book and clickable sharpie. The Sharpies that click to close are a favorite of characters because you don’t lose the caps and they’re big enough for many of the bigger characters to hold. We also love to keep our autograph book with us so that if we run into someone we’ve never seen before, we can add it. Otherwise, we just focus on the picture and not the autograph. If I can show my kids that we already have Cinderella’s autograph, they can stay in the moment and make a better picture (which itself can be a challenge).
- Portable phone charger. These little charging docks are amazing and particularly awesome if you find yourself ‘gramming pictures all day, refreshing the MyDisneyExperience app for last minute Fast Passes, or checking wait times compulsively. Either way, your battery is going to run down while you’re in the park. Having a charging dock can keep you going when you’re on the last few hours of the day and need that little boost to stay in communication.
- Miscellaneous Disney Items – Whether you’re an avid “Sorcerers of the Magic Kingdom” player or love to collect your buttons or something else entirely, I’m sure there are things you love to have, trade, collect, or look at on each magical trip.
Our big tip – keep a small suitcase permanently packed. We call it our “Disney Go-Bag.” Like a military suitcase or a labor and delivery bag, it stays packed all the time and contains our ears, our pins, ponchos, Disney apparel, and other “Disney only” items. Having it ready at a moment’s notice has been wildly successful for us, helping ensure I stop forgetting some of those crucial things the kids or my husband “must have,” often saving hundreds of dollars on each trip.
What are your must-have Disney essentials? What can you not live without on your trips to DisneyWorld?