Last month we had a craaaaazy idea to hit up Disneyland, during Spring Break – which is known for its crazy crowds. We knew going into it, it would be hectic – but it surpassed that – it. was. insanity! SO MANY PEOPLE, SO MANY CROWDS – but guess what was more impressive?! Not only did we survive, we had FUN! I even said to my husband “if THIS is as bad as it gets, I would still come back!” We has a blast!
I made a mental note of all our survival tips while we were there I wanted to share with you because I know sometimes school and work schedules only allow for you to do Disney when its busy, but we all can have a fun time no matter the time of year we go there.
First and foremost, try to save money before you even go to Disneyland! My 2 top tips for saving money pre- Disneyland?
- ALWAYS book your tickets with Getaway Today, they always have the best deals – and right now they are offering THE BEST DISCOUNT – 3 day Adult tickets, for kids prices. You won’t find a lower discount anywhere. Its a great deal you can get by clicking HERE. Dont forget to use code FRESHFIX to save an additional $10 on vacation packages!
- Also, to save money before we travel – I choose not to do any grocery shopping or eating out the week or 2 before we leave. We basically live off our food storage and everything in the fridge and pantry left we normally don’t grab to eat. Sure, its not the best meals BUT its worth saving a couple hundred dollars you know you will spend on the REAL good food of Disney!
Ok! So you have saved up money, and you’re ready to rock Disney during Peak Season — HERE are my survival tips!
- When starting the day at Disneyland, knowing there is crowds — make sure your kids know what to do if they get lost. I tell my kids to stop right where they are. Tell a Disney worker or Mom that they are lost – and give the adult my phone number to call me. But what about the littles who can’t memorize your phone number yet?! I bring a permanent marker and write directly on my childs arms my phone number. Its big, its noticeable – its not pretty but it works!
- Another way to make sure you can spot your kids easily? MATCHING SHIRTS! I learned this from my mom, who took 7 kids under the age of 12 to Disneyland. We wore the same shirt all week, and I make my kids do they same. They know the shirts to look for — and it will make your counting process a million times easier when they are easy to spot!
- Bring a baby carrier. You will need your stroller for transporting big items, but while you are waiting in line- you will get tired of wiggly babies, this is a great way to hold onto them! I even carried my 4 year old in it, its fine! haha
- Waiting in lines is inevitable. I will share a few ways to cut line waits BUT you will still wait in a few — so how do you entertain kids in lines so no one is melting down?! My kids LOVE playing Heads Up! Its a fun app (that even has a Disney pack!) you can use where kids use and guess clues. Its a great way to keep the entertained!
- Never underestimate the power of Dum Dum suckers. They are small, cheap and delish but the kids take forever eating them! We all know they can storm through a pack of fruit snacks in 2 seconds — buy some time with Dum Dums!
- I also recommend bringing in a big water jug. In all honesty, we like to eat in the park. I don’t love toting around a big cooler of sandwiches or anything – for us, half the fun is the festive food! That being said, I don’t like spending money there on drinks. I bring a big huge liter of water, and the kids share that and we refill once or twice a day! One other saving money tip- you can get cups of ice for free at most restaurants. So if you need ice cold water,just ask for cups of ice – and use the jugs of water you brought to keep the full!
- Last but not least, use the Fast Pass and Stroller Pass tickets! First when you get into the park, go get your Fast Passes, and make sure you use parent bounce passes – which allow your kids to ride twice! Once with you, and once with your partner. This makes the wait times not as bad – especially when kids get to ride twice! For more details on how to work the system click here!
Last but not least, location location location!
- Nursing locations! I was SUPER impressed with Disneyland’s Mothers lounge. Its like a time machine, its classic and has all the amenities and privacy you need for nursing, plus air conditioning too! But here’s the thing- if you are like me – you might not have tons of time to leave all your kids and go walk half across the park and nurse a baby – so the rides that are best for nursing a baby ON the ride? Pirates of the Caribbean (dark, long ride) Small World (very long ride, slow for babies) Haunted Mansion (also dark, long ride)
- Parade Location! I am nervous to send this one out into the internet because its the best location and we always use it! BUT the Parade in all its magical glory can be really hard to find a good spot. Especially if you dont want to waste hours saving a spot. So – about 30 minutes before the parade starts- we always head up to the front of the park, in the roundabout by the display windows. The curbs here aren’t full (even during peak season, 15 minutes before the parade they are empty!) and you can sit and watch the parade. Its a great location because kids can watch the window displays while they wait AND when the parade is over, you are the closest to the exit so you dont need to push through crowds again to leave. So there you have it, my best kept Disney Secret! Just promise me if you see us there you will save us a seat, haha!
As always, Disneyland is one of our favorite places – even with crowds and chaos you can have fun! Soak up the place and enjoy the moment!
Last chance to grab Discounted Disney tickets HERE!