1. Bring a blank book from home to collect autographs…and don’t stop there! You can also collect stamps at Epcot and stickers from DVC reps and quick service cashiers.
2. Carry fruit snacks, applesauce pouches, mini water bottles, or whatever you can quickly hand to a fussing toddler when you really want them to not be fussing.
3. Parade crowds got you down? The best spot to watch the parades is actually over by the character greeting spot for Tiana. You can watch the parade passing over the bridge in front of the castle but the noise level is just a bit quieter and since it’s not directly on the route, there won’t be a crowd blocking the view of your kiddo.
4. Managers have the best pins for pin trading because they get first pick and they spend less time “on stage”. You can often see which cast members are managers because they’re dressed nicely but inexplicably carrying brooms and dustpans.
5. Crocs are comfy but closed-toe sneakers are safer.
6. Tie a bunch of colored ribbons to the handle of your stroller so you can find it easily because the cast members move those strollers <em>all the time</em>. The brighter, the better!
7. Put sleep sounds on your iPad and pack some cushy kid headphones to create an instant quiet spot for little ones to nap.
8. Prep kids for greeting characters. Even if they aren’t nervous, they can get overwhelmed when it’s finally they’re turn to go up. While you’re waiting in line, open the autograph book to the correct page (so the characters don’t have to fumble), get the pen out, and ask your kid if there’s anything they really wanted to tell/ask the character. That gives them a minute to collect a clear thought to share. For example, Eva wanted to tell Tiana that she was named after Ray’s firefly friend and she wanted to tell Anna that it’s not nice to hit people, even Prince Hans.
9. Time to kill without park tickets because you’re flying in or flying out that day? Free splash pad at Downtown Disney. Just watch out for smokers standing around aggravating your kid’s asthma.
10. Just starting in on the world of taking kids on your Disney vacations? Pick up a silhouette portrait of your kids every time you take a Disney trip and in just a few short trips you’ll have a great collection that’s totally personal to your family.