Theme Park Backpack: What to Bring

I can’t go a day in a theme park without my trust backpack behind me. I’ve said this in previous blogs, but it really amazes me that my family used to travel to theme parks when I was a kid with just fanny packs. I think in our later years, my mom graduated to a drawstring bag, but still! How is it that at 24, I needed a full size backpack for just myself and my mom managed a family of 4 in a fanny pack? Maybe the times have changed. I honestly don’t know. But, what I do know, is what you have in your backpack or bag on your theme park days is really important. I’m not going to mention the obvious things here. Of course you need your wallet, your phone, your magic band, etc. This list is some of your not so obvious, must-haves.

  • Snacks: ALWAYS PACK SNACKS! You will be hungry. Probably more hungry than you are on an average day. Having snacks will prevent you from having to spend money every time you’re hungry. Now, you’ll spend money on just meals and snacks you really want to eat.
  • Sunscreen: Even in the more modest months, I would say sunscreen is a must-have. If you’re going in Florida Winter, bring a little travel size sunscreen. You definitely won’t need a full bottle, but there could always be a random day where it’s very hot and sunny. Be prepared!
  • Water Bottle: This one is a no brainer. There’s water fountains all over theme parks. Don’t be that person who spends $5 on bottled water every time you’re thirsty. Put a TON of ice in your water bottle before you leave your hotel, and continue to fill up on free water during the day.
  • Ponchos: I was totally, 100% the person saying “I won’t wear a poncho in Disney World.” Are they cute? Not really. But it’s so much more convenient than an umbrella. It’s more compact, it’s easier to walk around with, and it’s the one place in the world where you won’t be judged for wearing a poncho. Extra pro tip: buy cheap ponchos somewhere outside of Disney World. If you really want a poncho with something Disney on it, some of the stores (Target, Walmart, etc.) around Disney will have ponchos with Mickey or Minnie on them. They’re a little pricier than the standard ponchos, but they are A LOT cheaper than the ones in the parks. Or, splurge on the park ones if you want. To each their own!
  • My Must-Have Makeup: Read this blog for my must-haves and why I say so. Just out here plugging my other blogs 😉
  • Flip Flops: Again, this one is good year round just in case. We all love Splash Mountain. What do I not love about Splash? Just the thought of it getting my feet wet with gym shoes and socks on and being forced to walk like that all day. Blister city. Avoid all of that annoyance by packing a cheap pair of flip flops. Throw them on before you get in line, and you’ll be able to put on your dry shoes and socks after the ride is over.
  • Extra Socks: On that note, always pack extra socks. Even if you don’t do water rides, and you stay dry all day long. They say one of the best things for your feet is to just change your socks. Even though you didn’t do water rides, the gross truth is that your feet are still sweating and causing that moisture to be contained in your socks. Switch them out for a fresh pair once or twice. Yes, that may mean you pack 15 pairs of socks for 5 days, but it’s a lot better than having painful, blsitery feet. Take it from me.
  • Portable Charger: This is huge. Having a portable charger in the 21st century is a must. I brought 3 every day on my recent trip. Even though 90% of the time I didn’t have to use them, it was the comfort of knowing they were there if I needed them. I never had to worry about my phone dying. First World problems, I know. But that’s the reality a lot of us live in, so we may as well be prepared.
  • Plastic Baggies: This is my inner mom coming out at ya. I’m 24, but I am so Mom in Disney World it’s almost unbelievable. Plastic baggies are a must have for water rides, especially in the summer. For those of you who don’t know, they tend to turn off or lessen some of the water features on the water rides during the colder months. If you were guaranteed to get soaking wet even in the 50 degree weather, no one would want to go. Having plastic baggies for your electronics is crucial in ensuring they will also make it through the water rides. Again, there’s a chance you never even touch them, but they take up virtually no space so it doesn’t hurt to have.
  • Clothing Additions (depending on the season): This really depends on when you’re going, but I think any season could benefit. If you’re going in the dead middle of the summer when it’s the hottest, you may want to bring extra shirts. Long theme park days in the sun = sweaty. A fresh shirt could do you good. If you’re going in the winter or fall, it could be warm during the day but get cool at night. Pack a long sleeve t-shirt or a sweatshirt to save yourself from a pricey gift shop trip.
  • Deodorant: My only explanation will be a little math equation. Long days + sweating = smelly. Smelly + deodorant = not smelly anymore. You’re welcome. Math lesson, over.

I’m sure there are things on this list that I didn’t mention. Anything you think is crucial that I left off? Let me know!

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