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Walt Disney World Resort: Tips for the First Time Visitor

By Kimberly Fidler 09/30/2013

Get Away Today has been sending families to the Disneyland Resort since 1990. We are known for having the best deals and insider tips for Disneyland vacations, but we also are Walt Disney World Resort experts! Many of our guests have been to Disneyland numerous times and are ready to tackle "the World." We love so many things about both Disneyland and Disney World for their similarities and several differences. Even though they are both Disney Resorts, each vacation requires a different type of planning. Here are our top tips for every family visiting the Walt Disney World Resort for the first time - even if you're a Disneyland vacation expert:

  1. Stay on-property. While the Disneyland Resort has three resort hotels, Walt Disney World has nearly 30 resort hotels ranging from value properties that are available from less than $100/night to deluxe villas and luxury suites. There truly is a Disney hotel that will fit any budget and there are definite perks to being a guest at any of them. You'll get free transportation throughout the resort - including free airport transfers! Hotel guests also get Extra Magic Hours at the theme parks each day of their stay and will be the first to get to use MyMagic+ for FASTPASS and restaurant reservations.


  2. Plan on staying at least a week. With four theme parks, two water parks, an indoor virtual theme park, and numerous shopping, dining and entertainment districts, there are endless opportunities for making memories with your family. That's not even including the time you'll want to spend playing at your Disney hotel with themed swimming pools, golfing at one of the Resort's courses, or visiting one of the Resort's spas. Also, the longer you stay, the more you save. You can add days to your Magic Your Way Tickets for as low as $10 more per day!



  3. Get the Disney Dining Plan. Not only is the Disney Dining Plan incredibly convenient, it offers your family an added value of up to 30% off dining at the Resort if you were to pay for your meals as you go. Dining Plans range from Quick Service to Fine Dining with Wine Packages.

  4. Plan ahead. A Walt Disney World Resort vacation takes a little more planning than a Disneyland Vacation.Since it takes longer to get to and from the parks, you'll want to plan ahead of time which days you'll visit which parks. If you're staying on-property, you'll definitely want to know which days the different Parks will be offering Extra Magic Hours. We highly recommend taking advantage of that perk. Also, allow enough time to get back to your hotel if you need to schedule nap times. Realize it may take a little while and you want to get back before any meltdowns.


  5. Book a Character Dining experience (or two) and make a reservation well in advance. Unlike the Disneyland Resort, reservations can be made 180 days in advance and the most popular dining experiences will sell out. Walt Disney World offers so many unique Character Dining options and each is sure to be an occasion you'll always remember. Not to mention, it will save you tons of time waiting for character meet-n-greets in the parks. The Magic Kingdom is the only place you can dine inside Cinderella's Castle and the new Beauty and the Beast themed Be Our Guest Restaurant has been enchanting guests since its opening.



  6. This last tip is the most important...Have fun! Don't stress about cramming everything in. Take your time and soak in each moment. Each theme park has so much to offer, the water parks have so much fun in store, the entertainment districts are so great that they almost feel like theme parks, and each hotel is brimming with Disney magic. You don't want to rush through any of it to get on to the next thing on your Disney checklist.

We'd love to help you plan your Walt Disney World Resort vacation! In addition to insider tips, we also have the best specials. When you book with Get Away Today for travel this fall and winter, you can save up to 30% on select Walt Disney World Resort hotels! These exclusive offers can only be booked over the phone, so be sure to call our Disney Travel Experts at 855-GET-AWAY!

Check out these other great blog articles:

New My Disney Experience
New Fantasyland Photo Blog
Epcot 2013 International Flower and Garden Festival
Epcot 2013 Food and Wine Festival



Kimberly Fidler