For many people, Disneyland Anaheim is the dream vacation, a trip of a lifetime. Why spend all your time there in line, or pay too much for your trip? Our guidelines will help you avoid the most common mistakes Disneyland Anaheim and Disney California Adventure visitors make.
Eight Ways to be a Smart Disneyland Anaheim Visitor
These hints apply to both parks in the Disneyland Anaheim Resort: Disneyland and Disney California Adventure.
- Keep Your Ticket Safe: If you lose your tickets, they are not replaceable (without buying new ones) and you need to keep up with your Fastpasses, too. Many Disneyland visitors us a lanyard around their neck to stow it all and if you use one, you won't have to go around checking your pockets every 10 minutes, worrying that something had fallen out. Throw fashion sense to the wind and join the crowd - it could keep you from ending up like the people in front of us at the Guest Services a while back, who were nearly in tears about lost tickets. A slightly more fashion-conscious method is to attach a luggage tag to your bag or belt.
- Lighten the Load: Every ounce you carry in, you'll have to lug around all day. Start by emptying your bag and think about everything you decide to put back in. I ditch the library card, grocery store card all the others in the interest of keeping my wallet light. A backpack or fanny pack isn't convenient at Disneyland because it gets in the way when boarding rides. Instead, try a small bag with a long strap that you can slip over your head and across your body. If you get there and realize you're carrying too much, rent a locker. They're located in the entry plaza near Lost and Found and inside each park.
- Park the Packages: If you buy something in the Disneyland park, you don't have to carry it around all day. If you're staying at a Disneyland Resort Hotel, you can have your purchases sent directly to the hotel. Otherwise, you can ask where to leave your packages and then pick them up later near the entrance. If you buy earlier in the day, you'll also avoid the last-minute shopping rush at day's end.
- Don't Stand in Line: We've got 7 Ways to Avoid Standing in Line, inside and outside the park and here's a teaser hint: FASTPASSes are free and even though some people think they're too much trouble, they can easily save you hours of standing in line.
- Indecision Is Expensive: Wait too long to buy your tickets while you're trying to decide what you want to do and the prices could go up. If you can decide on one park to be in all day and stick to that, you can buy the less-expensive one day/one park tickets and save money on one of the most expensive items in your Disneyland budget.
- Make the Most of It: You'll probably walk a mile every hour you're in the park and that adds up, making many people too tired to stay all day. Instead of playing until you drop, take an hour or two afternoon break and go back in after that. You'll spend more total hours in the park and have the most fun you can for your money.
- Dine Wisely: Food inside the park is expensive. You can't bring a picnic inside, but you can carry snacks and refill your water bottles from a fountain, or pack a picnic and park it in a locker. Some visitors also like to leave the park and eat in Downtown Disney or at one of the nearby restaurants to save a few dollars, but tickets are far more expensive than meals, so consider whether going out wastes the hours you could have spent in the parks instead.
- Fuss-Free Fireworks: If you're tired of the crowds but still want to see the fireworks, watch from the roof of the Mickey & Friends parking lot. Stand under the covered walkway, and you can see not only the regular fireworks show, but also the pyrotechnics from Fantasmic. When the fireworks are over, you can be in your car and out of the lot before the rest of the crowds arrive. This strategy also works even if you aren't parked in the lot. Just take the tram to the Mickey & Friends lot, and then take another one back to wherever you need to go.