Who’s ready for some AWESOME tips for your Disney World vacation?
Here at DFB, we’re Disney World experts — we’re in the parks every day, we’re writing about the latest park news daily, and we’re even planning our own vacations to visit for fun. With all that experience, we’ve got plenty of hot tips to share to make your trip as smooth and hassle-free as possible. So here are some of our top tips that you may have never heard!
You Only Need One Annual Pass to Score Benefits
We’ve talked about Annual Pass discounts a lot in the past here at DFB, but if your family is ballin’ on a budget, you don’t need to get passes for everyone to save! If you can get by with just one member of your group purchasing an annual pass while everyone else goes for regular tickets, then you can use their discounts during your vacation.
Whenever you’re dining or shopping, make sure to have the AP holder with you to show their card and photo ID, that way you can save on table service meals, souvenirs, and select activities. If you’re not sure if there’s a discount, it never hurts to ask!
Although, you may want to keep in mind that some gift shops and restaurants are particular about who is paying. The person with the AP might need to make the purchase in order to score the discount, so just prepare yourself for that ahead of time. (In that case, Venmo, Apple Pay or PayPal can be a lifesaver!)
Also, Annual Passholders can get the PhotoPass add-on for $99 instead of the $169-$199 that regular guests pay for Memory Maker. And perhaps the best discount of all — Annual Passholders get free parking at the theme parks! Just show that card and ID at the parking plaza and you’re golden.
Finally, as a little bonus tip — Annual Passholders get discounts on merchandise in gift shops, but not items at snack stands. If you’re looking to buy a bottled beverage, do it at a gift shop to score that 20% off.
Disney Won’t Automatically Apply Discounts to Bookings
While we’re on the subject of discounts, we need to talk about online bookings. If there’s a discount available for a hotel room or a package and you book online, it’s not going to be automatically applied when you make your reservation.
If you haven’t made your reservation yet, the discount options should pop up at the top of the page when you’re selecting your hotel room. However, if you’ve already booked the trip, you’ll have to take the initiative to make sure that the deal is added to your reservation. Just call Disney’s number ((407) 939-4357) to get in touch with a reservation agent Cast Member, and have all your booking info at the ready.
Keep in mind that phone line wait times can get pretty long when new discounts are released, so if you experience that, you can sometimes try to modify your package yourself through the website or My Disney Experience app (it doesn’t always work, but it might be worth a shot). Of course, the easiest way to have discounts added for you is to book through a travel agent, like our friends over at Small World Vacations! They’ll make sure discounts are added to your trip if they’re announced after you’ve already booked.
You Can Pay for Individual Photos on Your PhotoPass
Want to get that awesome Cinderella Castle family group photo but don’t want to pay the $169-$199 for Memory Maker? Don’t worry — you can purchase individual PhotoPass pictures! Simply find the picture you want in the PhotoPass section of the My Disney Experience app, tap on it, and look for the option to download a single photo.
If you’re having trouble accessing this feature, try looking at the pictures on the Disney World website instead. You can also buy photo products — souvenirs with your favorite picture on them!
Disney World Has Virtual Healthcare
Disney World partnered recently with AdventHealth, and out of that partnership, there has come a virtual healthcare service! In order to access it, simply search AdventHealth in the My Disney Experience app, and you’ll be directed to a screen with the information you need. You might then be prompted to download the AdventHealth app (if you haven’t already).
There are 24/7 virtual services and doctor visits available for guests of Walt Disney World, and some insurance providers even cover the cost of the appointment. You can also use the service to rent medical equipment for your stay, including crutches, hospital beds, front wheel walkers, and numerous other offerings. It can be a great resource for those who feel “under the weather” during their vacation.
Your Resort Can Hold Your Luggage
Checking out of your Disney World hotel at 11AM but you’ve got one more park day planned? Don’t worry — you can have your resort hold your luggage until you’re ready to leave later that day! You’ll simply need to visit Bell Services at the hotel and drop off your bags.
Once you’re ready to leave, head back to the resort, pick up your items, and head on out. It’s as easy as that!
The Best Skyliner Gondolas Are the “Naked” Ones
Finally, let’s talk about the Skyliner. Disney World’s newest complimentary transportation system features a variety of colorful gondolas with fan-favorite characters and scenes depicted on the sides, but those aren’t the gondolas you want!
They may look cute from the outside, but the gondolas with “wraps” on them don’t provide nearly as spectacular a view as those that are clear. And trust us, you’ll want to check out the view when you’re flying over Disney World — it’s pretty cool!
Those are some of our little-known tips for Disney World, we hope they help you out on your next vacation! Stay tuned to DFB for more updates and the latest information that you need to know about the parks. We’re there every day to bring you our expert thoughts!
Our BEST tip for sticking with your budget at Disney World will forever be to plan ahead – especially for dining! When you buy our DFB Guide to Dining at Walt Disney World, you’ll get immediate access to our downloadable worksheets for planning your trip, as well as sample one-day dining itineraries! And as a DFB reader, you’re entitled to a discount! Use code WDW2023 for 25% off your purchase.
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What’s your best Disney World tip? Tell us in the comments!