There are two kinds of travelers: those who love to pack, and prepare for every possible scenario… and then there are those who just don’t. Can you guess which camp I fall in? I LOVE TO PACK! But I realize when it comes down to what to pack for Disney World it can seem overwhelming and you don’t want to forget anything important for your trip. Luckily for you we go to Disney World a lot, so I’ve put together this Ultimate Disney Packing List for you. For me, there is just something about getting all of your Disney shirts, mouse ears,, toiletries, and daily essentials together, to signify that your upcoming trip is near! So whether you love packing for your trips or you hate it, this Disney packing list will help make sure you have all of your bases covered, whether in the parks, hotel, or shopping around property. So read on to learn about what you should pack for your next Disney trip!
Clothing & Footwear
No Disney packing list would be complete without addressing the Florida weather you will find in the Orlando area. While Florida stays warm for most of the year, there are times in the winter months that can be on the cooler side, mostly from December – February. If you opt to travel to Disney World during these times you’ll need to be prepared for a wide range of temperatures. We suggest packing both shorts and pants, and short-sleeved shirts and jackets/sweatshirts. Yes, you can always buy what you need at the parks, but you can save some money by being prepared before you leave for your trip.
Cool Park Shirts – Shameless plug here, but if you want to wear some cool DIsney World inspired shirts to the parks then you should checkout some of the shirts in our shop. We’re always updating our collection we offer and just for reading this article you can get 10% off by using the discount code PACKLIST.
Light Jacket – Even in the winter Orlando doesn’t typically get down below 40 degrees (it can mind you, just not normal) and for the times that it does get a little chilly this jacket really is a great asset. I think Jared has about 3 of these jackets and I have a couple as well and they are really versitile and keep you warm.
SPF Sun Hat – Ok these hats aren’t my favorite thing personally but Jared tried one out a few trips ago and absoltely loves it if the sun is really bearing down, whcih we all know it can in Orlando. Below is the hat that Jared has and I also included a women’s version to the Disney packing list here.
Moisture Wicking Socks – Jared is picky about socks, I think it comes from a sports background but he loves these socks and always takes them to the parks
Comfortable Shoes – Perhaps the most important thing on any Disney packing list are of course packing the right shoes. Blisters and sore feet can put a damper on any vacation, but it can be even more of a pain on a Disney vacation. There is so much walking at the theme parks and having comfortable and supportive shoes is the best way to ensure that your feet are protected and free from strain. I can’t say this enough but don’t go with flip flops or high heels for a day at the parks. Chances are your “dogs will be barking” long before it is time to leave.
This part of the list are items that are going to be items that are going to help you handle all the challenges and elements that Disney can throw at you. When you are asking yourself “What to pack for Disney World?”, sometimes you have to think about a few what if sccenarios and this portion of the list addresses those elements.
Park Bag – You can either carry it with things in it already, or pack it away in your suitcase, but you will probably want to have a good park bag to take with you to the parks. I used to be one of those people that would just have my phone, Magicband, and maybe a water bottle…and then I had a child and everything changed! It is essential for me to have my park bag filled with some of things I mentioned previously, like sunscreen, snacks, ponchos, etc. You want your bag to be versatile and sturdy, but not too bulky. For that reason we actually designed our own bag for our Disney trips, which we affectionately call our “Mountain Trekker Bag”. We designed it with all of the things that a park bag should have: compartments, waterproof, lightweight, strong, and roomy. It’s honestly the best bag I have taken to Disney World! You can click here for more information on the Mountain Trekker Bag.
Anti Chaffing Stuff– Other than the wrong shoes the next thing that can ruin a Disney trip due to aboslute misery of discomfort is chaffing. Onnce you experience this once you will never leave off items that help with chaffing off your Disney packing list. We’ve all probalby experienced it and it’s awful, espcially in those hot summer months when the humidity is 1000%. The best thing you can do is to prevent the chaffing before it starts. We’ve tried a ton of different products that claim to prevent chaffing and these are the ones that we have found to work the best.
- Gold Bond Medicated Powder – This is our go to and works the best, it even can work to get rid of rashes that can pop up from the heat also. Don’t leave home without it
- Body Glide – We’ve had mixed results with this, it works ok but we find Gold Bond works better but others swear by this product so you may find it more useful than we have.
Poncho – IT. WILL. RAIN. ON. YOUR. VACATION. This is almost a guarantee. It’s just the nature of Florida weather. So if you catch yourself in an afternoon downpour while touring the parks, you’ll want a poncho or umbrella so that you can continue your day without much of an interruption. Getting your poncho ahead of time will save you some money because Disney does sell ponchos at the parks but as you can imagine, you are going to be paying a premium for not being prepared. Plus, a lot of park goers may not be prepared for rain like you, and leave the park to avoid getting wet. That means lower wait times for attractions! Take advantage of this!
Travel Umbrella – Having a poncho is a plus during the Florida rains but having an umbrella you can use is going to be really handy as well, espcially if you have any camera dquipment that you don’t want to get wet. This umbrella is small enough to fit in a bag easily and works really well when you need to use it.
Sunscreen – The sun seems to shine brighter and hotter in Florida and with days of your vacation filled with being in the parks for hours at a time, it is essential to pack some sunscreen. Just FYI, I prefer lotion compared to sprays. I feel like there is better coverage with lotion and it absorbs differently than sprays but it really comes down to what works best for you.
- Lotion: Neutrogena Ultra Sheer Dry-Touch Sunscreen
- Spray On: Coppertone SPORT Continuous Sunscreen Spray Broad Spectrum SPF 50
- Face Stick: Neutrogena Ultra Sheer Face & Body Stick Sunscreen Broad Spectrum Spf 70, 1.5 Oz.
Portable Phone Charger – I think everyone has a mobile phone now in 2018, so it’s safe to say that everyone will need to bring a charger with them on their trip which makes this part of any legitimate ultimate Disney packing list. Disney World utilizes the My Disney Experience app to keep track of things like dining reservations, Fastpass+ reservations, and attraction wait times, so you’ll use a lot of your phone’s battery during the day to check these things. So not only a wall charger for your hotel room is a must, but you’ll also probably need a phone charge in the afternoon and that is when a portable phone charger is a life saver.
- Anker Pocket Battery – This is a great choice if you want to just keep a battery in your pocket or in a pocket in your bag. This will hold about 2 charges and is probably our favorite choice for an external charger in the parks.
- Anker PowerCore 10000 Portable Charger – This is quickly becoming our favorite portable charger as it’s a great size, lighter than any other on the market in the 10,000 maH range and it provides up to 4 phone charges at a time.
- Anker 20100mAh Portable Charger PowerCore 20100 – If you’re looking for heavy duty power in the parks and on your trip then this is the charger for you. It has a 20,100 mAh, can charge 2 devices and can charge an iphone up to 6.5 times on a single charge. It’s not terrible large as it’s roughly the size of an iPhone plus but the power it provides is unbeatable.
In the parks there are FuelRod kiosks where you can get a portable phone charger for $30 which can be exchanged as much as you want for a new one at any of the FuelRod kiosks. The main issue with the FuelRods though is that they will only charge your phone about half way at most. So if you go that route you will be making multiple stops at kiosks to get a new battery and if more than one person needs a charge then have fun with that. There are plenty of options out there where you can get a portable phone charger that can hold up to 4 full phone charges that will solve your phone needs all day.
Food & Snacks
A major part of a Disney World vacation that is a Disney packing list must include is what you’re going to eat and drink on the way to Disney, while there and when you’re at your hotel. Food at Disney can get pricey really fast and can be tricky for those with special dietary needs or restrictions. And while Disney does an AMAZING job at addressing those with special food needs for each person, it is sometimes just easier to bring your own food with you (not to mention cheaper). This may not be feasible with meals, but you can bring your own snacks into the parks so you might as well take advantage of it. Plus, snacks are nice to have while on a plane or in the car on your way to Disney World, too.
- Quest Bars – These are our go to snack bars in the parks as they have 20g of protein and 15g or more of fiber as well so they will help fill you up between meals
- Jack Link’s Beef Jerky – Always a great snack no matter the situation, a true go to snack option
- KIND Breakfast Bars – Another solid snack option and one that is pretty healthy as well that will give you some energy you’ll need for walking around the parks all day
- Smartfood White Cheddar Popcorn – This is a healthy popcorn option that tastes amazing and you can throw these small bags in your park bag and eat them at your leisure.
- Snack Factory Pretzel Crisps – Another solid snack option in the parks on the go
Drinks & Coffee
This probably won’t come as a shock to you but even water at Disney isn’t cheap, as a bottle of water will run you $3 basically anywhere on property. Having some water and other drinks with you will help save you a lot of money in the parks and at your hotel. I’m not going to list out drinks here as you can get bottled water and soda at Walmart, grocery stores in the area and you can even get things delievered to your hotel room when you’re at Disney. I will list out some beverage containers we take with us and also, if you’re anything like my husband, you need your morning cup (or 3) of coffee and when you’re at Disney World this can really start to add up. So he started finding ways that he can get his coffee fix on the go and he’s got a pretty good system I must say. Below are some of the things he will do to make sure his coffee fix is met while at Disney.
- Brita Water Bottle– This is a great option to always have filtered water anywhere you go and it helps get rid of the weird taste that Florida tap water seems to have
- Callapseable Water Bottle w/ Filter – These things are an abosolute life saver because the wrost part about bringing your own drinks into the parks is when you are done using them they are a pain to carry around but this litterally takes up no room in your bag and can be resued over and over again.
- Starbucks VIA Instant Iced Coffee – This is a nice thing to have on you as you can basically make coffee anywhere you’ve got water and a container. If you’re in a room without a coffee maker then this is a agreat option as well.
KOHIPRESS – This thing is pretty cool as it’s a portable french press that can fit into a bag easily and can make a really good cup of coffee on the road.
Things You’ll Be Glad You Have With You
- Chilly Pad – If you’re at Disney during the hot Summer months you will be glad you’ve got one of these wrapped around your neck
- Autograph Book– Getting an autograph book before you arrive at Disney World is going to save you a lot of money and you can also have a bit more variety
- Blanket For Parade – If you’ve ever been waiting for a Disney parade without a blanket you’ll quickly find yourself vowing to never forget one again… until you forget the next time. This travel blanket has been a life saver and is very versitile as it can even work as an emergency poncho if it starts raninig suddenly while in the parks.
- Around The Neck Personal Fan – I should note Jared isn’t as big of a fan of these as I am, but with that said I LOVE THIS THING! If you’re at Disney and it’s hot & humid this thing really helps to take the edge off as just about any airflow is going to feel amazing. You couple this with a Chilly Pad towel around your neck and it’s the closest thing your going to get to a personal A/C unit in the parks.
- Battery Powered Stroller Fan – As hot as we get in hot and humid weather at Disney, our little ones feel it just as much or more than we do. I picked up this little fan for our daughter’s stroller and it really helped getting some airflow to her in the stroller in the heat and it also helped her to nap a bit better in the stroller also. This is a must have for us.
- Packing Cubes – These have made packing for our trips much more organized and once at our hotel things don’t become such a jumbled mess of clothes and wires with these as well.
- Compression Bags – If getting your suitcase zipped up is always a challenge (like it is for us) then these compression bags will be a life saver. If you’re like us and always wanting to save room to bring home souivers and other things from your trip then this will allow you to do that much easier.
- Travel Hand Sanitizer – It probalby goes without saying that after grabbing handrails, handles on rides and just being in a theme park surrounded by thousands of peole that you’re going to be exposed to a lot of germs and nothing can ruin a trip quicker than getting sick. So keeping these handy travel hand sanitizers on hand are fantastic to have for when you’re about to eat or just whenever you need it.
- Mini USB Power Strip – There are never enough power and USB outlets, you’ll be glad you’ve got this on hand
- Pop Up Hamper – This speaks for itself and with kids now it’s a must have
- Photography Gear
- Shout Wipes – I take these everywhere with anyways, they have come in really handy while on vacation many times
- Downy Wrinkle Releaser – Needless to say when you go on vacation it’s just almost impossible to keep shirts from getting wrinkles. This stuff works really well in getting rid of wrinkles and also freshening up clothes a bit too
- Over the Door Organizer – Always comes in handy when getting things organized in your hotel room, can put just about anything in there you may need or just don’t want to get lost in your room
- Fanny Pack – Joke as you may, a fanny pack is actually really handy to have in the parks. It gives guys a place to put their phones, wallets, keys, etc without fearing they will fall out of their pockets on rides or other places in the parks. For the ladies it can be more conveient than bringinn in your purse and lugging it around all day. Good thing is fanny packs have come a long ways since the 90’s and the one we list here can be used as a fanny pack, shoulder sling and a few other wearing styles. It’s versitile, holds lots of items and doesn’t look terrible
What do you think of this list? These are my absolute MUSTS to pack when coming on a trip to Disney World. My full packing list seems to grow every year, but these 8 things remain as my top picks. I’d love to hear about what YOUR packing list has that mine doesn’t! Leave a comment below about what items are your musts to pack when traveling to Disney World!
If you are still planning your Disney trip then you might be interested to learn more about Disney travel agencies and how they can make your trip much easier and possibly save you money as well.
By Jamie Lee
Jamie is a lifelong Disney fanatic that has been going to Disney parks since she was a child. She is the head writer here at Capture The Magic & co-host of the Capture The Magic Podcast. When she isn't planning her next Disney vacation, she can be found helping people plan their own Disney vacations and enjoying quality time with her family.
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