There’s a lot to consider when planning your day in a Disney park. What time should you arrive? What fast passes do you want to make? Where are you going to eat? But one thing that can be easy to overlook is what to pack in your bag for the day. Two awesome things to keep in mind for packing your Disney park bag – one, you can bring your bag with you onto every ride and you can bring your own food and drinks into the parks. Awesome right?!
Normally, theme parks require you to rent an expensive locker to keep your things in for the day. Not at Disney! I mean, you still have that option because there are lockers available for daily rental, but you’re by no means required to get one. What’s great about this is that you can keep all the important stuff on you (like your phone, money, and ID) at all times. Which always helps give me peace of mind. Honestly, I didn’t really take advantage of being able to bring in your own food, mostly because I knew I wanted to try lots of snacks and goodies in the parks. Especially considering that Disney food is essentially its own cuisine. There are a ridiculous amount of things to try.
However, if you’re trying to save money, have little kids in tow, or are bound by dietary restrictions, this is a wonderful option. It’s no secret that Disney World is expensive, and the food is no exception. Even just feeding my teenage niece and I, the bills racked up. I can’t imagine how expensive it can get to feed a whole family! We did usually toss in a water bottle or two before heading out to the parks, but didn’t bring in any snacks. Definitely is an awesome perk that is provided though, since again, most theme parks don’t allow you to bring in any outside food. Take advantage and pack a lunch or a few snacks to keep you energized while trekking all over the park!
Before I get started, I suppose it’s important to mention that this post is really only covering the bases for adults. Packing a Disney park bag for little kids is a whole other beast (but still mostly the same)!
So without further ado, here’s my list of must-have items for any Disney park bag:
A Bag – Ok, ok. But really! You’ll need a bag. I used a crossbody bag, which worked perfectly for my needs. But, it seems like the other fan favorite was a backpack. Which would probably be my next option. Either way, you’ll want something that is comfortable to wear all day and provides enough space to pack all of your Disney day essentials.
Sunscreen – That Florida sun is no joke people! Unless you’d like to spend your vacation looking like a bright red cherry, I’d suggest applying a decent layer of sunscreen before you head out to the park. And be sure to keep a bottle in your bag to re-apply throughout the day. Florida gets pretty warm and humid, so I guarantee you’ll be sweating at some point. I prefer spray sunscreen so I don’t have to get it all over my hands.
Park Map – Right after you scan into the park with your MagicBand, you’ll see at least one stand right near the entrance with a bunch of park maps. Grab one! It’s a total lifesaver, especially if you’re a first timer or haven’t been in awhile. Even though you can view the park maps on your phone (if you’ve downloaded the My Disney Experience App), it’s always nice to have a physical copy to refer to. I used ours numerous times.
Gum – If you’re a gum person (like me), or just like to pop in a piece of mint gum here and there, you’ll need to make sure you pack some. Gum is not sold anywhere in Disney World, so just toss a pack of your own into your bag.
Poncho – One for every person. Everyone I know that lives or has lived in Florida say that it rains every single day, and that it just depends on when and for how long. I can’t vouch for this since I’ve never lived there, but even though we were only there for about 6 days, we did find this to be true. It usually never lasted long, but we were glad to have a poncho just in case. They did come in handy. Tip: Disney does sell ponchos, but they are overpriced. So do yourself a favor and bring your own.
Snacks/Drinks – Like I mentioned above, Disney allows you to bring in your own food and drinks. Toss a water bottle and an apple or granola bar into your bag to snack on in case you get hungry between meals and don’t want to spend much.
Bandaids – I tend to get blisters easier than others, but with the amount of walking you’re going to be doing in a day at Disney, it wouldn’t be the worst idea to toss a few in your bag. On average, you’ll be getting in over 20,000 steps so it’s pretty likely you’ll get at least one sometime during your trip.
Chapstick – This isn’t really specific to Disney World, but I can’t go anywhere without some kind of chapstick. If you’re this person too, don’t forget to toss this in.
Phone & Portable Charger – The phone is obvious, because who’s not already going to bring this along. But I mention the portable charger because if you’re going to be in the park all day, you’ll need to charge your phone at least once.
Cash/Credit Card – Again obvious, but important! So don’t forget them.
Wet wipes/Hand Sanitizer – Disney has public bathrooms littered everywhere throughout each park, so finding somewhere to wash your hands should never be an issue. However, it’s always nice to have a second option for before or after eating. Some of those Disney food items can get pretty sticky and messy!
Camera & Batteries – I usually just use my phone for taking photos, but if you are more of an actual camera person don’t forget to pack this. I promise you you’ll want to take tons of pictures throughout the day!
Tylenol/Ibuprofen – Maybe this doesn’t apply to you as much, but I can get headaches easily. If I get tired, stressed or forget to drink enough, etc. I always make sure I have a little travel bottle of Tylenol in my purse no matter where I am, but I highly suggest this for your Disney park bag. Disney World is highly stimulating and exciting, but also hot and exhausting. It’s the most amazingly fun place ever, but it can get stressful as well. Just do yourself a favor and make sure you have some. It’s never fun to have a nasty headache when you’re out trying to enjoy yourself.
Pads/Tampons – Ladies, not much explaining needed. Even if it’s not your time of the month, just toss one in. Better safe than sorry!
MagicBand – This should technically be on your wrist and not in your Disney park bag, but this is still a must have! If you forget this at your hotel, you won’t be getting into the park. So save yourself a trip back to the hotel and remember to slap it on your wrist before you head to the bus stop.
Happy hump day lovelies!!