Are you planning a Disney trip? Yay! Planning a trip to Disneyland is almost as much fun as being in the parks! The only downside to a Disney trip is the cost, Disney World and Disneyland can be quite expensive. To keep the cost down, there are a few things we always bring on a Disney trip.
By the way this is not a comprehensive Disneyland Packing List. These are a few essentials to consider to help make your trip to the Disneyland Resort or even Walt Disney World Resort better.
While there are some things I always bring on a trip, I also try not to overpack as well. Unless you are flying on Southwest or driving (I’m not a big fan of road trips if I can avoid it), then you will likely have to pay to check your luggage. I try to avoid that at all costs unless I think what I am bringing outweigh the price to check a bag.
Here are 5 things we always bring on a Disney trip (and you should too!). Your wallet will thank me!
Things to Bring on a Disney Trip: Food
We prefer to book hotels that offer a free breakfast but that doesn’t usually work on our Disney Trips. When we visit Disney World, we tend to stay onsite and Disney resorts don’t offer a free breakfast. At Disneyland, the couple of hotels we prefer across the street on Harbor do not offer breakfast either.
Typically on Disney trips, we opt to just eat a quick breakfast in our room before we head out to the parks. All we need is a mini fridge in our hotel room for milk and a few easy breakfast options like cereal, granola bars, fruit, etc.
We tend to throw a few groceries in our suitcase as room allows but we also like to order groceries once we arrive. Amazon Prime Now is an awesome option for Amazon Prime members, they offer a free 2-hour delivery window if you are spending at least $35. You can also pay an extra fee for a one-hour hour delivery window if you prefer. The groceries are dropped off at the bell desk of your resort.
There are a couple of other options to consider like delivery from Garden Grocer or grab an Uber to a local grocery store to do your own shopping. Since we only need a few essentials like milk, water, fruit, and snacks, I prefer to just have a few things delivered and avoid going to the grocery store myself.
Don’t forget to bring a few snacks with you to the park. It’s easy to throw a ziploc bag with snacks into your Disneyland backpack. Eating at Disney Parks can be expensive so if we can snack a little and eat a lighter meal, you will save some cash. Plus you never know when you might be stuck in a long ride queue, or on Disney transportation and your kiddo is STARVING.. can’t wait or they will die. You know how that goes! 😉
Things to Bring on a Disney Trip: Laundry Soap
I know doing laundry doesn’t sound like a fun vacation activity but you need to be prepared with traveling with kids for 7 days. Even if you pack enough clothes, you never know when some crazy food (or heaven forbid a bodily fluid) disaster will strike.
Or you are just like me and plan on doing laundry and we can pack half as many clothes! You’re better off bringing your own laundry soap. You can bring the brand of soap you prefer which is important if your family has sensitive skin and you will also save a ton of money. Hotel gift shops and laundry room vending machine prices are downright crazy.
I prefer these laundry packs to liquid or powder that might spill in my suitcase. It’s easy to keep a couple in a ziplock bag inside my toiletry case. By the way, at Walt Disney World you can monitor the status of washing machines and dryers via the Laundry View website. Plus you can check to see if there are any available machines BEFORE heading to the laundry room, I love this so much!
Things to Bring on a Disney Trip: Water Bottle
Bring your own refillable water bottles on your Disney vacation. Disney will give you free cups of ice water, so there is no need to buy bottles of water for $3 each inside the parks. We’ve found many food places have cups of ice water filled up and ready to go for anyone who asks. Grab a couple and refill your own reusable water bottles with the complimentary cups of ice water.
If you like a break from water all day, then throw a couple of drink mix packets in your day packs. They are a good option to help break up the monotony of drinking water all day.
Things to Bring on a Disney Trip: Ponchos
I ALWAYS pack ponchos on Disney trips. I swear it rains every time I go to Walt Disney World and quite frequently in California depending on the time of year. Having a couple of dollar store ponchos stashed away in your bag will make you feel like a money-saving genius when the rain clouds roll in.
Plus you can wear the ponchos on exceptionally wet rides like Kali River Rapids, Splash Mountain or Grizzly River Run and HOPE it helps keep you from getting soaked. No promises though! I’ve even seen kids wearing swim suits on some of the water rides.
Things to Bring on a Disney Trip: Stroller
We are out of the stroller phase now but we used them in the parks until our kids were 5 or 6. You do a ridiculous amount of walking in the parks and it’s inevitable that younger kids will need a break from time to time. Plus it was a great place to stash our ponchos, water bottles, and snacks. Learn from our personal experience, no one wants to carry an overtired 6 year old out of the park back to the hotel.
We really loved our BOB Revolution FLEX, it was perfect for our Disney trips. The weight limit is higher than typical strollers, so it could accommodate either boy. Plus they could squeeze in together in a pinch. If you don’t visit Disney often, consider renting a stroller, that worked well when we didn’t want to fly with a stroller across the country. Disney does allow double stroller options as long as they aren’t wider than 31″.
More Disney Trip Advice
Check out some of my other posts for more Disney trip advice.
Where to Stay at Walt Disney World
We’ve been to Walt Disney World quite a few times over the years and would recommend the following onsite hotels:
Deluxe Resorts at Walt Disney World
- Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge is a really unique resort with its own safari full of animals surrounding the property.
- Disney’s Beach Club Resort has the best pool area and is located close to both Epcot and Disney Hollywood Studios.
Moderate Resorts at Walt Disney World
- Disney’s Port Orleans Riverside reminds me of New Orleans Square at Disneyland has quite a few recreational activities.
Value Resorts at Walt Disney World
- Disney’s Pop Century Resort is a fun value resort that will soon offer transportation to Epcot and Disney Hollywood Studios.
Save on Disney Tickets & Packages
Ready to plan your next Disney trip? Let Get Away Today help! They pride themselves on saving families money and helping plan your perfect vacation. Check out their deals on Disneyland and Walt Disney World tickets & packages.
My family has booked Disney vacations through Get Away Today since I was a kid, so I know it’s a well-established travel agency. Plus they are a Select Tour Operator with Disney Parks and is approved by the Better Business Bureau.
Book online or call Get Away Today at 1-855-GET-AWAY. Mention my promo code DCHICA to get the best prices and you can even save $10 on any 2-night or longer Southern California vacation package.
If your trip is a little further out you can use their layaway program and save towards your next Disney trip all year long.
What do you pack to save money at Disney?
This post was originally published June 2, 2015.