There’s so much to do before your Walt Disney World vacation, but don’t forget the shopping. While the shops on property do offer a variety of merchandise, I definitely recommend that you bring along some essentials. If you don’t have a car, you may find the offerings at the Disney shops to be fairly limited. Here’s an overview of what to bring on a Walt Disney World family vacation. If you don’t have these items, it’s a good idea to buy them in advance.
Disclosure: Affiliate links within. Purchasing and/or clicking on some of the links in this post helps support Family Travel Magazine®.
Of course, you’ll want to bring the usual items that you bring on vacation, like clothing, toiletries, bathing suits, etc. In our packing lists, we have one for theme parks that will definitely help. Find our packing lists here.
Having sore and tired feet on vacation can really put a damper on your stay. Everyone has a different comfort level with shoes, so I recommend that you bring along whatever works for you. My personal favorite brands are Dansko, FitFlop, and Josef Seibel.
When my kids were younger, they loved walking around the parks getting autographs. You can purchase books in the parks, or bring them along with you. You can find the official Disney ones online, and there are lots of options on Etsy.
If you’ve got a young child who wants to dress up as their favorite princess, you may want to bring those clothes along with you. You can definitely buy costumes in the park, but you may be able to get better prices in advance. Here are some at the Disney Store.
I always bring along snacks from home, including granola bars for breakfast. Again, there are some options in the parks, but I always like to have them in advance.
Kids don’t love waiting in lines, so it’s a good idea to bring along some cheap activities and toys to entertain them in line. I recommend visiting your local dollar store to stock up.
A Portable Charger
I use my phone a lot at Walt Disney World – to take photos, use the My Disney Experience app, and communicate with family members. My phone’s battery generally doesn’t last the day, so I bring along a portable charger to recharge it. My favorite is this one on Amazon – it can even charge an iPad.
A Lightweight Bag
You’ll need something to carry around, and I recommend a lightweight backpack. I like those backpacks with a side pocket for a water bottle, so you won’t have to keep reaching into the bag for it.
When my kids were little, I had them wear safety tattoos with our phone number on them.
The sun in Florida can get HOT, so be sure to bring along the sunscreen. You can find sunscreen in the park shops, but I always bring my own.
When my kids were little, I used to ship a box of baby food and diapers down to WDW before our stay (some resorts may charge for this). While those products are sold on property, they usually only have one or two brands to choose from.
Have you been to Walt Disney World? What items should I add to this list?
If you are going to Walt Disney World, I recommend the following hotels. Note that I have stayed in some of these resorts as part of press trips, but all opinions are my own.
- Disney’s Beach Club
- Disney Swan and Dolphin
- Disney’s Art of Animation
- Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge
- Gaylord Palms
- JW Marriott Orlando Grande Lakes
- World Center Marriott