Disneyland: What to know before you go, the basics.

Dear Disney Traveller,

Where to start?! There are so many tips and tricks to make the most of your Disneyland Holiday, whether you have 10 days in the parks or only 1 so here are just a few of mine:

To start with you need to plan right. I always recommend buying a Hopper ticket no matter how long you have, the Hopper ticket allows you access to both of the parks in Anaheim on the one day. As one park will open earlier than the other and the second will close later than the first this is a great way to maximise your time in the parks. The parks are located across from each other so it is very easy to walk between the two of them.
The Hopper ticket also means that you can take advantage of the ebb and flow of the line times. If you notice that the lines in one park are starting to lengthen then sometimes the lines in the other park might be better.
There are also multiple parades and shows in each park and you can easily jump between parks to go see the different shows. For those who aren’t a fan of the rides then the Hopper ticket is great for this reason too.

One of the hardest questions to answer is also one of the questions that I am asked the most often: How many days do you need to spend at Disneyland?
I guess the answer to that will always depend on the individual and what interests them. Unfortunately or fortunately depending on how you look at it I love almost everything that you can do at Disneyland, the rides, the shows, the parades, the fireworks, the magical moments, the character meet and greets, the photo pass opportunities. Because of this I always find that I could have used more time there no matter how often I go.
Honestly, if you only have 1 day then it is still worth the visit however if you have the time then go for as long as you can. 5 days is a good amount to do as much as you can without exhausting yourself. There is a special 10 day ticket that you can buy from Travel Agents in Australia which I always recommend if you are going to be staying in Anaheim for enough time. There are plenty of other things to do in Anaheim and with the 10 day ticket you can pop into Disney for a half day after shopping or in the evening after visiting other parks. Also, the difference in price the last time I checked between a 5 and 10 day ticket was only around $20aud per person.

Before you go make sure that you download the Disneyland App onto your smartphone and that you will have internet access on your phone while you are there. At the time of writing this blog they still don’t have free Wifi in the parks at Anaheim so you will need a local sim or a data plan that works in America. I buy a local US sim for around $40usd which gives me unlimited calls, texts and data for a month. Even if I am only there for a week it usually works out the best option.
The Disney App is a big help in making the most of your time in the park, play around on it a little before heading over so that you know how it works, this will save you time working it out when you get there.
Not only can you see all of the ride wait times on the app, you can also see when the current Fast Pass distributions are. I will cover off on the Fastpass system more in a separate post for while you are in the parks.
You can also see what characters are in the park at any given time for photo opportunities and see where the special photo spots are for those with the photo pass which is another highly recommended product that I will cover off on in my ‘while you are in the parks’ blog.
You can also use the app to book Character Dining, to see all the offered services in the parks, find the closest restrooms, check the menu at the nearest cafes, see the shows in the park and what times they will be on or just to help with your bearings and find the shortest way to get your next destination.

Money Saving Tip: Once you are in the parks you will see everyone wearing their best Disney Merchandise. Knowing that we only had the budget for a couple of special souvenirs from the parks when we were there my friend and I had pre-purchased a pair of matching Disney tops to take with us and wore them when we got there. People loved them and many asked us where we’d bought them, we then had to break the bad news to them that we’d brought them with us from Australia.

-Jeanette