A few months ago, my family and I traveled to Walt Disney World in Orlando, FL for the first time. In fact, our four-day stay was marked by a series of magical family firsts from my first dance with my son, to our first time in the front row watching a skating show during the Festival of Fantasy Parade, to our first safari in Animal Kingdom and so much more. Over the course of our trip, we laughed, we cried, and certainly one of our most memorable firsts was when my son met Mickey. When Mickey spoke to him personally it was truly a magical moment that he will never forget and the expressions of joy on his face will be forever ingrained in my memory.
As first-time visitors to Disney, there was so much I learned that I'd like to impart to other families visiting for the first time to ensure their trips are as magical as what we experienced. Here are three secrets every parent should know about before they plan their trip:
- My Disney Experience App: As a mom who likes to have everything planned beforehand, this app was a lifesaver. I used it to plan and manage my personalized family trip, book my hotel, meals, purchase my tickets to the parks and create photographic memories. It helped me make the most of my family's time at the park. I could see maps which helped me get to attractions easier and quicker, find the nearest bathrooms, coffee kiosks, and even the time that Mickey would be giving autographs. Perhaps the biggest perk of registering with this app, was skipping long lines and my son's infectious smile as he was welcomed to each attraction by name.
- MagicBand: Another secret we found out about during our vacation, was the Magic Band, a custom bracelet which records your information when booking a vacation package to Walt Disney World. It functions as a key to open your room, acts as a Fast Pass to attractions and can be used to charge your purchases during your stay at the resort.
- Memory Maker: A trip to Walt Disney World is an experience that creates memories for a lifetime and should be a part of our photo albums. This is why I was so happy to discover the advantages of using the new Photo Pass version of Memory Maker. Professional photographers are available throughout the parks to take your pictures and add a little of Disney magic to your photos with your favorite characters and places, such as Cinderella's Castle or Tinker's Bell's fairy dust. The primary advantage of Memory Maker is that you can select your favorite pictures as souvenirs of your trip and print them or save them on your digital photo album.
These helpful hacks helped make our trip magical to say the least. In addition to the endless rides and attractions, seeing families from all over world on their first trip to Disney, reminded us that "It's small world after all" and that regardless of nationality or language, everyone enjoys a little Disney magic.
For more information, check out http://www.disneyworld.com/TuMagia