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Someday, I aspire to be a minimalist. Until that day happens, however, I try to take as little as possible. Especially when visiting Disney. Who wants to be carrying a large bag around all day? Here are the only items I feel it’s necessary to pack in your Disney park bag.
1. Phone and battery pack
Yes, this may seem obvious to most. Yet, my husband is returning from a multi-day business trip in which he forgot to take his cell phone. It happens.
After finding the best backpack for Disney, make sure you have a solid phone case because it will be jostled around quite a bit during the day. Ones like this case with strong rubber sides hold up nicely.
Plus, now that I finally upgraded my 4-year-old iPhone, I rely on it to take my pictures instead of bringing my bulky camera.
Don’t forget a battery pack. Charging stations are not easy to come by and besides, who wants to waste time waiting for a phone to charge? Throw a battery pack in your Disney park bag and charge it while you are on the rides.
Just to note, if you are constantly using My Disney Experience to check wait times or make Genie Plus/Lightning Lane reservations, your battery level will decrease fast.
The sun can be relentless in Orlando, especially in the summer. Use a hat to shield your face and head from getting a sunburn.We picked up adorable (and cheap!) Mickey and Minnie baseball hats before we left. Much better than paying extravagant prices in the parks. Amazon has quite a few Disney hats for all ages and sizes.
3. Rain ponchos
If it’s summer, it’s going to rain on your Disney vacation. Just go with it. Bring along some of the best rain ponchos for Disney and make sure they are in your Disney park bag.
4. Cooling towels
Wet them, wring them and snap them to activate the cooling feature.
5. Minnie ears.
Wait – a hat and ears? Yep, for different parts of the day. We wear our ears first thing in the morning and then later in the day after the sun sets.
It’s not just a kid thing either. You will see plenty of adult women wearing Minnie ears.
Rose gold is the new ‘it’ color. These rose gold Minnie Ears are adorable (and there is a matching Minnie bag, too).
Don’t be caught sitting in the hot sun without it at the 3 pm Festival of Fantasy parade.
I find the sunscreen spray easier to use in the parks. Kids (and adults) are already hot and sticky. It’s easier to just spray it on.
7. Re-usable straws
Disney has gone green. They did away with plastic straws early in 2019. For anyone that has used paper straws, you know why I recommend taking your own.
Paper straws get soggy and disgusting after they get wet.
8. Autograph book and sharpie marker
Do you have little ones that are anxiously waiting to meet all the Disney characters? Take an autograph book with you and watch their faces light up when they get their favorite characters autograph and picture.
We found a Disney autograph book that has a special area for both pictures and autographs. Put it together when you return home and now you have a nice little memory keepsake.
9. Water bottle
Stay hydrated. Refill your water bottle at either drinking fountain stations throughout the parks or by asking for ice water at any counter service restaurant.
The benefit of taking a water bottle instead of just using a paper water cup is that you can put your water bottle back in your Disney park bag while on a ride. And it won’t spill or leak like a paper cup.
10. Pin trading stuff
As my daughter has gotten older, she is not interested in autographs, but rather enjoys pin trading.
Depending on your child’s age, take one or the other.
Initially, we bought a starter pin set on Amazon along with a lanyard to show them off. We did not receive any duplicates in our set and she freely traded at the parks and resorts to get different ones.
11. Hand sanitizer
No matter how many times I tell Little K to not touch handrails or fence posts, it seems I’m talking to a wall.
Since we can’t be running to the bathroom all the time to wash hands with soap, I carry a travel hand sanitizer with us.
Amazon even has a couple of cute Disney themed travel hand sanitizers that you can clip to your Disney day bag.
12. Wallet or cardholder
Another obvious choice? Maybe or maybe not. If you stay at a Disney resort, you really don’t need any cash since a credit card is linked to your Magic Band.
However, I feel I need to carry my ID with me, along with a credit card and a Disney gift card.
If you stay offsite and don’t purchase Magic Bands, you need to keep your RFID tickets safe and easily accessible as that is how you use your FastPasses.
I just use a little credit card holder to keep the few cards I take. No need to take a full wallet to the parks.
Why pay exorbitant park prices? Take a few snacks with you into the park. They don’t take up much room and by afternoon they will be eaten anyway.
Usually, we take cheese crackers, goldfish bags or granola bars. It’s enough to tide us over until we eat a bigger meal.
Not for diapers, but for those sticky, messy hands that come with snacking. Keep a travel pack of wipes with you for those times when you’re in line and can’t get to a restroom to wash them immediately.
15. First Aid supplies
While I don’t bring my whole medicine cabinet with me, I definitely bring band-aids and antibacterial ointment.
In fact, I have a small first aid boxed kit that I always keep with me. You never know when a kid will fall and scrape their knee.
Winter bonus item: Hoodie
Not a necessity in the summer, but definitely something you may want to have on hand in the winter months, November through February.
Both mornings and evenings can be quite cool in Orlando. In fact, winter is my favorite time to visit. Find Disney sweatshirts and hoodies at Walmart, Kohls and Amazon.
Putting it all in our Disney park bag
Most of these are quite small and should easily fit in your Disney park bag. Remember, you don’t want to be lugging a big backpack with you throughout the park.
Keep it minimal and stick to the basics. Sometimes that’s easier said than done. Of course, if you have babies still in diapers, that adds a different level of things to take. But, in that case, you also have a stroller in which you can store things!
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What’s in your Disney park bag? Let me know in the comments!
For more Disney tips, check out the following posts:
- 15 Mistakes Not to Make at Disney World
- Disney World FastPass+ Ultimate Guide
- 10 Disney Refillable Mug Tips You Need to Know
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