How to Deal with the Crowds at Disney

Planning a Disney trip is truly an art form. We all want to make sure we do it right. We all want to make sure we have fun. We all want to make sure we don't miss anything important.

When I found out I was going to Disneyland for the first time, I spent a long time researching what I needed to do. When I got there, I realized most of the information you find on the internet is entirely useless and you shouldn't spend time stressing. Therefore, I'm writing this post so you don't have to read hundreds of blogs essentially telling you to get there early and wear sunblock.

Basically, there's no way to truly avoid crowds at Disney. It doesn't matter how bad the weather is or what time of year it is. Disney is eternally busy. And every single day, the crowd is different. HOWEVER, Disney really cares about their guests. If I'm being honest, I never minded the wait. Here's ways you can deal with it. 

1. The middle of the day is terrible, but it's still Disney, so deal with it.
Arriving early and staying the entire day is a must. Most of the people going to Disney are locals, or families from across the country who don't know what they're doing. Therefore, not everyone is going to get there super early and last the entire day. Parking there and getting to the actual entrance of the park takes a lot of time as it is, so arrive earlier than you would expect. The middle of the day is crazy. It's warmer, the people are grumpier, and the lines are longer. However, it's best to keep a positive attitude and just enjoy the ride. ALSO, huge tip. Main street is always open an hour after the park closes, so save your souvenir shopping and last minute trips till the end.

2. Bring your own food. (I made the mistake of not.)
Disney is one of the few parks that allows you to bring food and drinks. They have a variety of food options, accomodating to all diets, HOWEVER...the money adds up. You will get dehydrated fast. You will need actual substance in your body. We all want to try a dole whip, a mickey pretzel, and popcorn. But you will realize your energy will drain fast. Stay hydrated, bring a sandwich or something. If you are dining for one or two, the money isn't a big deal. But if you have a family...that's where it get's complicated. You will be walking around all day so make sure you bring something that gives you energy.

3. Bring what you need, because Disney is super accommodating.
When going somewhere like Disney, we always think, "WHAT SHOULD I BRING?" Yet at the same time, we don't want to go overboard. Here's the thing. I went with just one of those little phone/wallet things and survived the entire day. I wouldn't recommend overpacking because it becomes tedious. At most amusment parks though, if you have a backpack / purse, not all rides have a place for you to put it. Even if they do, it's not always secure. Disney's high thrill rides have a really secure place in front of your seat for you to put your stuff. It's honestly such a great invention. So if you're bringing a backpack, no fear.

4. Don't plan your day.
Shocked to hear this? Get a general idea of what the park has to offer, but planning your day is a huge mistake. You'll end up missing out on more than you think. The magical thing about Disney is you never know what's going to happen. Did I know my first Disney ride was going to be Pirates of the Caribbean? No, but the line was really short so I thought, why not? Later in the day, the line was circling around the ride. Then, I wanted to Minnie, but the wait was 30 minutes. I wasn't in the mood to wait to meet them, so I left. Then I saw Minnie at the end of the day with no line whatsoever. The waits for the rides / characters / parades / etc are truly never that bad and they are completely manageable. But if you plan your day moment by moment, you may be wasting a lot of time.

5. Enjoy the wait.
It's true. You're at the happiest place on Earth. Talk or play games with the people in line with you. If the wait for the ride has interactive scenery to it, such as Star Tours, enjoy it! I know I did. All the lines generally move fast, but complaining isn't going to get you anywhere.

6. Supervise your children.
They say this before almost every ride, and it's true. Realize you are being inconsiderate to others if your children are being a distraction. I've heard so many cases of children jumping out of rides, whining/crying, vandalizing property, running into other people and so on. It's quite simple, if you don't think your child is ready for Disney, maybe they aren't. If you want to bring them, keep your eyes on them! We all want to have fun at Disney, regardless of age. The cast members and the other park-goers are considerate to you, pay them back by being considerate to them.