Disneyland and every Disney park is becoming increasingly more expensive. What used to be easily affordable is now becoming a luxury item – even for a day trip. With ticket prices up to $179 for just one park, it’s a little insane. If you want to maximize your time at Disneyland, you will need these tips. Not only will it help you get the most out of your expensive ticket, but it will help save you money. Trust me, I am a seasoned Disney-goer!
Download the Disneyland App to maximize your time
Downloading the Disneyland app will help keep your tickets handy at all times. It will also help you to check wait times and plan your attack on the park. Not to mention, you will need the app to use Genie+ or get Lightning Lane passes.
Bring flip flops for water rides
Nothing kills the fun of a day faster than soggy feet. Now although some people may enjoy that squishy sensation, I do not. Pack flip flops into your bag or backpack for your Disney day! Change in to them before getting on any water ride, and viola! You won’t be the one that has to suffer through the consequences or has to run back to the room to change.
Purchase a park hopper ticket
The great thing about Disneyland and California Adventure is that you can do both parks in a day. Especially if you have visited other parks because a lot of the rides are very similar if not the same. More so, with the additional Disneyland tips in this blog, if you only do one park, you’ll be finished with your Disney day so quickly, you will have wished you got the the park hopper.
Book an off-property hotel within walking distance
The best way to get in to the park as early as possible and to stay as late as possible is having a hotel room nearby. This will ensure that you can be up early to get in to the park. But it will also help you to have a place to crash without having to drive while tired. Not to mention many hotels near Disneyland are the same if not less walking distance than some of the Disney hotels. My personal favorite is the Grand Legacy Hotel. From the hotel lobby to the Disney security checkpoint is about 7 minutes.
Be there at rope drop to maximize your time at Disneyland
“Rope drop” is just a fancy way of saying “when the park opens”. And to be clear, it is very different than the Extra Magic Hour. Extra Magic Hour is only for guests who have a Disney hotel reservation. But this Disneyland tip goes hand in hand with the off-property hotel tip. If you have a close hotel, doing rope drop should be so easy! Even if you don’t have a great place in line for rope drop, you will still be ahead of so many other people who didn’t want to wake up that early.
Have a “left” mentality
Much of our life is geared towards the right. Department stores and grocery stores usually put the most important products on the right. We drive on the right side of the road. So without even knowing it, we are trained to go right. But I can tell you right now, the best game plan for starting your day at Disney is to go left. On the left are some of the most iconic rides that will inevitably be some of the longest lines in the day. That includes Indiana Jones, Pirates of the Caribbean, and Haunted Mansion. All of which can easily have a wait time over an hour long by midday. Go left and save Space Mountain for later.
You may not need Genie+ if you plan your trip for the middle of a weekday in the offseason. But why risk it? Genie+ is Disney’s newer version of fastpasses. Except now it will cost you $20-25 per ticket. The price will vary depending on whether or not it’s a peak day. You will be able to book your times for rides directly through the Disneyland app. And you can even browse the rides you want to get a “fastpass” for before booking. But similar to fastpasses, you will have a wait time between booking your next “fastpass” time slot. This is one of the most necessary Disneyland tips to make sure you can get everything done. Yes it is an extra expense but it will ensure that you can get on as many rides as possible.
Do the big rides during shows or parades
Rise of the Resistance, Space Mountain, Indiana Jones, and Radiator Spring Racers are probably the longest lines you will experience. If you can’t get to the park early enough or if you don’t purchase Genie+, your next best option is to just wait until a show starts. While everyone is distracted watching the parade or fireworks, you can make your way to one of these rides! It’s not guaranteed that the lines will be empty, but you should generally see that they are shorter.
Mobile order your food and drinks
The only lines you are waiting in today are the lines for rides. We do not have time to wait for you to stand in another 15 minute line to get your food and then wait for it to be made. Mobile order your food using the Disneyland app. Not only can you select your items easily, but you can choose when you pick it up. That means you can be in line for a ride and then set up a mobile order for when you get off the ride. That’s true maximization right there!
Bring snacks and refillable water bottles
Disneyland lets you bring in your own food and drinks. So why wouldn’t you? Although Disney food is delicious, it’s expensive. Save the food money for your meals and bring in your own snacks. This will help you cut costs and waiting time for food. Plus Disneyland has plenty of water fountains to refill your water bottles. I recommend getting one from Corkcicle! I bought the Spider-Man canteen and I use it all the time. They have so many cool Disney, Marvel, and Star Wars water bottles and tumblers to choose from. I also recommend bringing some Liquid IV packets along for your Disney day. With all the walking you will do in the day, you will need to stay hydrated. And your electrolytes will need some extra help. If you do decide to get Liquid IV, I recommend purchasing through their online website and not by going to a grocery store. The grocery store prices are much more expensive. Not to mention, you can save 20% off your purchase on Liquid IV with the code DONNAGAILBLOG.
Try Single Rider lines to maximize your time at Disneyland
Single Rider lines are not always available at every ride. But when they are they can be extremely helpful in maximizing your time at Disneyland. If you can handle riding a ride without your group, use Single Rider. You will get the entire time waiting in line together and you’ll only be separated right before getting on the ride. And if you’re lucky, in some cases they will take multiple people from the Single Ride line. Which could mean that you and your friend could ride together. But be warned. Using the Single Rider line leaves the assumption that you and your party will be separated. Do not use the Single Rider line to try to worm your way to the front and ride with your friends. I would recommend using Single Rider for rides that you have either already done maybe at another park. Or on rides that you don’t mind not sharing with your friend. Either way, Single Rider is a great way to maximize your time at Disneyland if used properly.
Book your hotel and tickets with Get Away Today
Only the pros know to book with Get Away Today. It’s not very well known and that’s fine because the deals are insane. And if everyone knew, they may not be able to run them! Get Away Today gets you the best prices. Not just for hotels but for entry tickets as well! This more so applies for if you are booking multiple nights and multiple park days. But give them a look for your Disney or non-Disney trips. They can help you plan vacations to multiple locations including cruises. Try out all of these Disneyland tips the next time you visit! You would be surprised with how much you can get done.