disney-shipDisney World. It’s the cliché of all Spring Break vacations…and one of the most crowded times to visit. But with a little planning, and a lot of careful maneuvering, you can have a great time with your family on a Disney World vacation.

Buy a Book

The Unofficial Guide to Walt Disney World (Wiley Press) is an amazingly helpful book of tips and helpful ideas on planning your trip, saving money, and keeping your sanity. While lacking in criticisms – let’s face it, not EVERY attraction is a winner – it does offer tips on when to go where, how to save money, and a lot more.

Go to the park on weekdays – not weekends.

Even though there will be lots of people at Disney during the weeks that most schools close for Spring Break, the Park won’t be nearly as crowded as if you went on the weekend, when day trippers show up in droves. Also, if you’re staying in the park, many packages include “magic hours,” when only people staying in select Disney Properties can get into the park. Make sure to ask about them when you check in. 

Visit the less-popular attractions during peak hours.

Why wait on line for hours to see It’s a Small World when The Carousel of Progress is virtually empty and you can walk right in? Maybe some of the less popular rides – like Country Bear Jamboree, Swiss Family Tree House, or Jungle Cruise, aren’t as thrilling as some of the big ticket rides, but they sure beat standing in line. And they are pretty good in their own right – they haven’t been around for so long for nothing! Who knows, by the time you get out of a smaller attraction, the lines at the bigger ones may have lightened up. And don’t forget to use FASTPASS, Disney’s ingenious attraction-schedule device that gives you a ticket that lets you by pass the longer lines during a certain window of time. It spreads out the crowds and doesn’t cost a penny.

Take a Break in the Afternoon

This rule is especially important to families with little ones. Disney World is exhausting. There’s a lot of walking, a lot of excitement, and a lot of waiting – it’s enough to knock you out. But back at your hotel, a pool awaits. Don’t ignore it. If you spend all of your time in the park, you’ll exhaust everyone – and everyone’s patience. Enjoy the sun. Lounge by the pool. The park will still be there when you’ve got enough energy to go back.

Face it, every kid dreams of their own Disney Vacation, and if you follow these few simple guidelines, it can be a dream come true for everyone.