How I Like to Pack for Disney World

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Packing for Disney World requires a lot more preparation than you may think. Disney World is in the heart of Central Florida. So, of course, it’s going to be hot, right? That means just throw some shorts and t-shirts in a checked bag and you’ll be on your way. Well, my playbook for packing is a little bit more in depth.

The most important thing to me is that you ALWAYS have some sort of carry on bag. Even if you are checking 1, 2, or maybe even more bags through your airline. Why? It’s not that you need the extra luggage space, necessarily. On your way to Disney World, if you stay at a Disney World resort, they will handle all of your luggage for you. As soon as you drop it off at the counter at your hometown airport, it will be handled by a bunch of other people to get it from your airport to Orlando airport and then to your Disney World resort. If you’ve never been a person who has had their luggage lost, consider yourself lucky. But, take the advice from someone who has. ALWAYS have a carry on bag with at least 1 day worth of clothes for your entire group or family. There is nothing that would bring my mood down more than getting to Disney World so excited to back and realizing that somewhere, my luggage was misplaced and it won’t get to me until the next day. If you didn’t have that carry on bag, you’d be scrambling trying to piece together how to make it work. The carry on totally solves that problem.

Bring a backpack! I have no idea how my family used to survive our long Disney World trips with just fanny packs back in the 90’s-early 2000’s. On my most recent trip, both my boyfriend and I had our own backpacks and they were usually full or close to it. Yet somehow a family of 4 was able to survive in fanny packs? The times have definitely changed. Especially with the increased prices of everything. The last thing you want to do is have to buy snacks, drinks, and clothing items every park day because you didn’t come prepared with what you need in your backpack. Having an extra sweatshirt, your trusty water bottle, and some ziplock bags full of snacks helps you save any money that you may have HAD to spend on those necessities. Your backpack is your right hand partner on a Disney World vacation to help you be the most prepared day after day.

Lastly, make sure you leave some space in your checked bag(s). We all tell ourselves that we’re not going to overspend on souvenirs. But have you seen the new World of Disney at Disney Springs? You tell me how you take even one lap around that place and don’t pick something up. Seriously, tell me how you do that. i really need to stop walking by everything I see, touching it, and going “aw this is cute.” It’s a problem. I’m working on it… (Okay. No, I’m not.) Disney Springs has really evolved into such a great shopping center that it’s become a must-do of any Disney World vacation. When it comes to how shopping at Disney World has changed since I was a kid, Disney Springs is really it. It’s no longer about buying just Disney merchandise. There are so many great stores and shops in Disney Springs that you may just walk into one because something you’ve been needing or wanting is there. So, now, you have to plan for your Disney merchandise as well as a normal shopping day. The extra space in your checked bag will save your life.

Of course, this is just a general overview of how I like to pack for Disney World. There’s a lot more that goes into it. How do I decide what outfits to wear and bring? What if it’s going be hot during the day buy cool at night? I want to have options, but how do I fit it all in my bag? What essentials must be on my packing list? All of these things will be discussed over time on my blog, and I’ll continue to give you the best advice on planning, preparing, and packing for your Disney vacation. Have any specific questions about packing? Comment below or contact me!

My Must-Have Makeup Items to Have During a Long Theme Park Day in Disney World

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Long Disney World days can take a toll on even the toughest makeup. Luckily, it only takes a handful of products to help freshen up your look midday. Throw these items in your park bag, and you’ll be good to go from park open to park close.

1. Face Powder

This one is an easy pull. Everyone knows the feeling of their face getting oily and discolored during a long day. Pull out your face powder and give it a little brush across your face. Your face will even out and look much fresher with just a little bit of face powder TLC.

2. Bronzer

The only problem with touching up your face powder is there’s a good chance it’ll wash out any natural color in your face. The best way to bring that back? Just a little bit of bronzer. A quick swipe on the cheekbones and around the perimeter of your forehead will immediately bring that glow back to your skin.

3. Concealer

Concealer, to me, is the “just in case” item on this list. There’s a 99% chance you won’t need to use it. But, that 1% chance is worth it. I mean, think about it. You’re in the hot Florida humidity, and you’re walking around with the sun blazing down on you. There’s every chance in the world that some dirt gets into your pores and causes a midday breakout somewhere on your face. While this is totally natural and not something to be ashamed of, I know I feel better knowing I have my trusty concealer to cover anything up if needed.

4. Mascara

This is probably just a personal preference. Mascara is one of the most important parts of my makeup routine. It takes me from looking like I just rolled out of bed to looking like I’m ready to take on the day. And no matter what I try, no mascara looks as good at 2:00 pm as it did at 8:30 am when I just finished my makeup. As my mascara fades throughout the day, it’s nice to give my lashes a quick coating to make my eyes pop.

5. Chapstick

This is an absolute no brainer. Everyone needs a good chapstick in reach at any moment. I don’t think I’d be able to survive a full day without chapstick, let alone a full Disney World park day. For any of you who prefer to have a little color on your lips, opt for a tinted chapstick. Kill two birds with one stone!

Everyone is different when it comes to their makeup preferences. Some of you may opt for no makeup, and some of you (like me) do your makeup every single day. These 5 items are the ones I find myself grabbing the most during a long, busy day in Disney World to keep me looking and feeling picture perfect. You never know what Disney World celebrities you may see and want to snap a pic with!

My Top 5 Disney World Rides for Grown Ups

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This blog is going to be exclusively about your standard “grown up” rides in Disney World. As you may know from previous blogs of mine, I really don’t believe that any rides are exclusively from grown ups nor do I believe that any rides are exclusively for kids (unless height restrictions come into play.) However, there are rides that are “typically” more popular amongst older crowds. Below, I’m going to run through my top 5 “Disney World Rides for Grown Ups.”

5. Dinosaur

Dinosaur is not for the faint of heart. Every aspect of this ride makes it a great “grow up” ride. It’s absolutely pitch black once you enter the dinosaur age. You can’t see where you’re going and you can’t see where you’ve been. There is always something about not being able to see what’s going to happen next that makes a ride a little bit more thrilling. You are also driving through the time where dinosaurs ruled the world. From personal experience, I can tell you that I was absolutely TERRIFIED of this ride when I was a kid. Now, that’s coming from a kid who was afraid to cross a bridge over water in a thunderstorm because I though I was going to die of electrocution, but that’s a story for another time. The dinosaur animatronics are about 50x less scary when you grow up. Heck, I was smiling at the dinosaur in one of the photo pass pictures on dinosaur on my last trip. Lastly, not only are you moving on a track, but your jeep is jerking you around. Multiple forms of movement on a ride definitely increases the thrill-o-meter. If you add all of this up, this is a great #5 grown-up ride.

4. Expedition Everest

I don’t want to pretend with you guys. The first time I ever rode Expedition Everest I was about 11 years old. The roller coaster aspect? Piece of cake! I had a blast. The “yeti gets in my face and I think I’m going to get my head eaten off” part? Yeah, 11 year-old me was less a fan of that. Nowadays, I’m trying to shake his hand. Honestly, he’s a legend. I would be HONORED to shake his hand. And the roller coster track is a really great one. As someone who hadn’t ridden the ride in years, it was easy to forget how steep and fast that big drop out of the mountain was. That drop alone qualifies this ride as one hell of a grown-up ride if you ask me.

3. Tower of Terror

This ride makes it on my list for so many reasons. You have a thrill, you have a creep theme. You have a show that most kids probably know nothing about. Mix those three things up in a bowl and you have my #3 grown-up ride. There is always something about “creepy” themed rides in Disney World that automatically qualify it as a grown-up ride. Even for the kids who LOVE it, most of them probably walked through the queue line a little bit worried their very first time. This is also a high intensity thrill ride. I mean, you’re being pulled up and down and elevatory shaft at high speeds. And the theming of the ride is “Twilight Zone.” I don’t want to act like I’m some aficionado on “Twilight Zone,” but at least I know what it is! There’s probably a lot of younger kids who get to the pre show and have to turn and ask “what’s the Twilight Zone?” That, in itself, qualifies this to be a grown-up ride.

2. Flight of Passage

Flight of Passage is an incredible ride. I have absolutely nothing bad to say about it except that eventually I had to get off of it, and that made me sad. I know that any kid who is tall enough is waiting in line and riding this ride with their family. If this ride were themed any other way, it would not make this list. The fact that this ride is themed based on the movie “Avatar” is the exact reason it made it. Avatar was an INCREDIBLE movie. And, unfortunately, a lot of kids probably haven’t seen it. It’s a really long movie. But it happened to come out in theaters in the prime of my life. I was 14 years old and going to movies was the cool thing to do on the weekend Avatar was hyped BIG TIME, so I went to see it in theaters. I have seen it a handful of times since then, and I can honestly say my experience on Flight of Passage was shaped by the fact that I knew and understood the story of Avatar. I can’t imagine that 7+ year-olds are going out of their way to watch Avatar before riding flight of passage. Do you have to? Of course not! But, the fact that many people my age and older had the chance to watch the movie before experiencing Flight of Passage really helped me bump it to my #2 grown-up ride.

  1. Rock ‘n’ Roller Coaster

I’m sure you knew this was coming. There was no way Rock ‘n’ Roller Coaster was going to be left off this list. To be honest, I didn’t really know this was my #1 choice until I started writing this blog. Everything together makes this my absolute FAVORITE grown-up ride. Fast start, upside down, darkness, and a soundtrack of Aerosmith. This is one of the most, if not the most, intense thrills in all of Disney World. It’s the only roller coaster in Disney World to go upside down, and it is one of the fastest rides on property. And if that’s not enough to qualify as a grown-up ride, you get the sound of Aerosmith in your ears. Similar to my thought on F.O.P I think it’s so important that I know and enjoy a lot of Aerosmith music. This ride is cool no matter if you know the music or not. But, being able to sing along and enjoy some music you love and have listened to since you were a young kid is an awesome addition to an awesome ride.

Disney World has done a lot to make a name for itself and ensure that it is not a theme park full of rides for little kids only. Upping the speed, thrill, and theming of rides has really lead to a lot of options for adults to enjoy. Disney World has a way with making people of all ages enjoy their parks, and these 5 rides are a big reason why.

Choosing Your Disney World Hotel on a Budget

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Part of being a 24 year old Disney lover is understanding that I just don’t have the money to sustain consistent trips to the happiest place on earth. Not only that, but the trips I do take have to follow a very strict budget. At 24 years old, I’m not making a “through the roof” salary to spend freely. The hotel options I can afford are limited, the timing of the trips is crucial, and it’s important to find creative ways to maximize my time when I’m there.

Disney World doesn’t make visiting on a budget TOO difficult to make work. With different hotel ranks, it’s pretty easy to pick out the hotels that you can afford with your budget. Value and moderate resorts tend to be the only options I look at when planning a trip. Will I browse through the deluxe resorts and deluxe villas in my free time? Yes, because I’m a Disney World addict. But, when I’m really in vacation planning mode, I won’t even touch the surface of those. It’s important to be realistic when I actually sit down to plan my vacation.

Value resorts are the lowest end resorts on the Disney World property. The rooms are smaller, the theming isn’t as extravagant, and the resort itself is not going to have a lot of extra “frill” to enjoy. The value resorts include the 3 All Star resorts (All Star Movies, All Star Sports, and All Star Music), Pop Century resort, and, I believe, they include Art of Animation in there as well. Pop Century resort just received a face lift in it’s rooms, and I can tell you from personal experience that it’s been well done. And, according to Disney Tourist Blog, the All Stars will be receiving a similar face lift until about midway through next year. While the overall resort theming will seemingly stay the same, the rooms really needed an upgrade to step out of the 90’s. These upgrades will likely cause for an slight increase in price, but the value of these resorts as an option on a budget is still fantastic.

The moderate resorts come with a slight price increase, but they are more well themed and the rooms are larger. The moderate hotels include Caribbean Beach, Coronado Springs, Port Orleans French Quarter, Port Orleans Riverside, and the Cabins at Fort Wilderness. These hotels have a very concise theme, and it really brings you into the Disney World feeling. Deciding to choose a moderate hotel is really about your personal preference. Something to keep in mind is that the lower end moderate hotels (Coronado Springs and Caribbean Beach) are VERY large resorts. But, that doesn’t mean you’re forced to walk from the main check in area all the way to your building every night. There are multiple bus stops around the resort to take you as close to where you need to be. There really is something about the added theming and the larger, more decorated rooms that makes the moderate resorts a really great option if you have some more wiggle room with your budget.

Deluxe resorts are not something I’m going to get into here, as most people my age probably can’t afford that quite yet. But, if you can, please let me know how you do and how I can too!

Drinks, drinks, and more drinks

As a young adult frolicking around Disney World, I’m sure most of us secretly have one thing on our mind… “Where can I get a cold, delicious drink around here?” And, folks, I’m not talkin’ “kiddie cocktails.” The good news is you really shouldn’t have to look too far!

Something that was once virtually nonexistent within the Disney World parks has now become somewhat of a staple. I mean, EPCOT has it’s own, extremely popular fall festival with “wine” in the title. And I’m sure most Disney fans know of the infamous “drink around the world” EPCOT challenge. You can find a tasty alcoholic beverage all over Disney World now in 2019. I’m not going to tell you that “the red wine in the Italy pavilion is to die for” or “you have to try the sake in Japan.” No, no. What I’m going to tell you is what drink experience is crucial for your next Disney World vacation. You choose the booze, I just tell you where to find it.

Let’s kick our feet back, head down to the gift shop at our Disney World Resort, grab an ice cold beer, and sip. This is an UNDERRATED Disney World drink. I, for one, am a big beer girl myself. But, even if you’re not into beer, there is nothing quite like a cold drink down the pipes after a long day of traveling to Disney World. Or, if you’re feeling a little fancy, you can actually have a bottle of champagne delivered to your Disney World hotel room. The price is a little steep (and you can usually find wine or individual bottles of champagne somewhere on the resort grounds), but there is something special about getting a full bottle hand delivered to you. Pop that sucker open, pour a glass, and cheers to the start of the fantastic Disney World vacation you’re just beginning.

My next favorite drink is anything different and unique at EPCOT. This may be an unpopular opinion, but you can get a margarita or a beer anywhere, anytime. What can’t you get anywhere? A #RainbowSherbertGlitterDreamAle like what is currently being sold at the EPCOT International Festival of the Arts (credit to for reminding me of the exact name of that beer). On top of being something completely different from what you’d ever have anywhere else, you can also get one hell of an Instagram picture from it. Don’t you dare forget how important a good Instagram shot is (click here)!

Lastly, my most important drink for you to get while in Disney world is (drumroll please) ANYTHING at Jock Lindsey’s Hangar Bar. If you can snag yourself a seat out on “Reggie” (the outdoor boat bar to the righthand side), you can get one hell of a view. Looking out at the water to the beautiful Saratoga Springs resort is such a sight. And, if you’re looking for a little something different to keep your eye one, the “Amphicars” leave from right next door. If you don’t know what these are, they’re basically old-timey looking cars that double as small boats. A group of about 4 people (give or take) can take their seat in one of these cars and they’ll drive off into the lake and cruise around. Even after seeing it time and time again, it is one of those things that I never tire of keeping my eye on. And, hey, having a delicious drink to sip on is helpful too.

Of course, this is just a short list of my “must do” Disney World drink experiences that I believe are important. To be honest, I could name a lot more, but these are the important ones. I can guarantee you I will not miss any one of these in my future Disney World trips as a young adult.

Disney World Overview

For the young adult Disney World fan, it’s important to have a solid background on all things Disney World before you plan your trip(s). I want to take you through a general overview of the Disney World Property in Orlando, Florida. Actually, we can start right there! Disney World is actually located in two unique cities that are exclusive to the Disney World property. Disney World is located in Bay Lake, Florida and Lake Buena Vista, Florida. However, for all intents and purposes, Disney World is located just outside of Orlando. The Disney World Property is massive. It is made up of 4 theme parks, 25 hotels, 2 water parks, and it’s own shopping and dining center. Throughout all of this, you will also find scattered locations with various recreation activities including golf, mini golf, boating, and much more. Disney World in Florida is so much more than “just another” theme park.

That being said, the theme parks are obviously a huge draw in Disney World. The 4 theme parks on the Disney World Property are Disney’s Hollywood Studios, Disney’s Animal Kingdom, EPCOT, and, of course, Magic Kingdom. These 4 parks include a wide variety of thrill rides, exciting entertainment, food and drink options, and much more. There is something for every young adult at each of the 4 Disney World theme parks.