How to Park Hop at Walt Disney World
When you ae visiting Walt Disney World and you’re limited-on time and want to see as much as you can, park hopping is a great way to get more into your days. Beware, park hopping is not for the faint of heart! If you have small children I do not recommend this. If not done properly, park hopping can be exhausting and you could easily waste a lot of time. This would not make for a magical trip. With all that said, if you have a plan it is possible to have a magical time hopping form one park to the other. I have done it many times and have had a wonderful time seeing what I wanted to see in a short amount of time. Here are some tips that might help you when park hopping at Walt Disney World.
Make sure you have the right type of ticket. You need the Walt Disney World Park Hopper Ticket; or the Hopper Plus ticket if you’re planning to visit the water parks too. The base level tickets do not allow you to park hop. I make sure all of my clients have the right ticket type to make their trip magical.
Use the Monorail:
When hopping form Magic Kingdom to Epcot use the monorail. This is the fastest and easiest way to get there even with little ones in tow.
Bring a car:
When I have a trip planned where I am going to hit more than two parks in a day, I rent a car or drive my own. I have found having my own car there makes life so much easier. The Monorail is great for getting from Magic Kingdom to Epcot and back, but it cannot get you to Animal Kingdom or Hollywood Studios. It is much easier and faster to have your own car. This can save you a ton of travel time and this is a big deal if you are trying to see more than one or two parks in a day! If you are staying on property, parking at the parks is included in your vacation. Simply have the cast member swipe your magic band and you’re in. If staying off property you will have to pay to park at the first park you visit. Then keep your receipt and you won’t have to pay again for any other park you visit that day.
Know your way around:
It is a good idea to know your way around Disney Property and the parks if you are going to park hop. Getting from point A to point B in the least amount of time, and not being stressed about how to do it will make for a much more magical trip. I make sure my clients have a copy of park maps and the Walt Disney World Resort. Driving around the world can get confusing to say the least. On our very first trip we drove and we got lost. We spent so much time driving around; we missed exits and had no idea where we were going. I never made that mistake again.
Stay on Property:
When planning a trip to Walt Disney World and you know you will be park hopping, it is best to stay on property. Why? Glad you asked. Extra Magic Hours! Only guests staying on Disney property get to take advantage of this perk. If you want to squeeze the most out of your time at Disney World you will need to utilize these extra hours. For morning Extra Magic Hours, arrive at least 30 minutes before park opening to take advantage of the first few hours in the park. You will have less crowds which will mean lower wait times on the rides and the things you want to see.
Stay late in the parks:
Also, Walt Disney World has late evening Extra Magic Hours. You will want to make this your last park of the day. The late-night hours seem to be a little slower, and in turn you will get to see and do more. Again, you need to have a plan and I will make sure you do when I am your travel planner.
Take a Break:
If you think arriving before opening and staying till close will be too much for your family, plan to take a break in the middle of the day. The afternoon is the most crowded and the hottest time of day, so missing the middle part is better than missing early morning or late-night hours.
Have a Plan:
FastPass is going to be your best friend next to me! When park hopping using FastPasses can be a little more complicated. This is where I come in to save the day. I will help you plan what park you will be in and at what time.
- Take advantage of the slow morning hours at your first park.
- Hop to the next park to use FastPasses.
- While you’re at the second park, schedule a fourth FastPass (as soon as you’ve used your third) for the next park on your schedule to take advantage of the evening hours.
Pick the right resort:
I suggest you pick a resort that is centrally located. If you pick a resort that is located on one side of Walt Disney World this will take up more travel time when getting to the parks on the other side of Disney property. If you get a resort that is in the middle of the property you will save on transportation time to and from the resort and parks.
It is so important to realize that you WILL NOT see it all. Even if you where to stay in just one park all day you would not see it all, so when park hopping you must prioritize. What is your must-do in each park? I will help you put together a great plan and itinerary for your trip. In the long run this will help alleviate stress, and if you have kids, this will help them know what to expect in each park. It might just keep them from having a meltdown if they know ahead of time what they will and won’t be seeing.
All in all, park hopping is not for everyone, and it’s not for every trip! As your personal travel planner, I will get to know your family’s wants and needs and help you put together the best and most magical trip for your family. I would love to set up a time to talk with you and get started on your magical adventure. You can contact me at: email@example.com. Hope you have a magical day!