Have you heard the phrase, or a variation of it – “A hot day at Disney World is still better than any day at the office” ? Maybe you’ve seen it on an e-card or written on a photo of Cinderella’s castle on your preferred social media outlet. For many, this rings nothing but true. But for some, the summer months are the only time they can take a family vacation, and they are stuck trying to keep their skin from melting, and unfortunately not enjoying the “happiest place on earth” quite a much as they could, or should be.
If you are one of those who is planning to visit WDW this summer, or have heard the horror stories of heat and humidity and are worried, this blog post is for you! I will give you a few tips on just how to stay cool as possible while enjoying all there is to offer in the parks!
1. BRING A HAT! – The Florida sun is not only hot, but it is bright too. Most of us have never figured out how to apply sunscreen to our scalp without getting it in our hair. At least I haven’t. Pack a hat for every member of your family. It will keep the sun out of your eyes, and the burn out of your scalp.
2. BRING YOUR OWN REFILLABLE WATER BOTTLE! – A refillable water bottle is a huge must in the keeping cool category. You can purchase one of these almost anywhere at home before your trip. Big box stores like Wal-Mart and Target offer inexpensive prices and a wide variety. Did you know that you can request a FREE cup of water at ANY quick service dining location in Walt Disney World? You can use this free water to fill up your bottle, or you can fill it with the water from the self-service drink fountain in these restaurants. Hydration is key to keeping your body temperature down and keeping heat stroke at bay. Remember to pack a sample size bottle of dish detergent to wash out while in your room.
3. BRING A COOLING PAD! – Our favorite is the Frogg Togg Chilly Pad. This is a towel that you wet under a faucet, and it remains cool and slightly moist. Great for putting on the back of your neck, or putting on your face when you get too hot. These are washable and reusable time and time again. Frogg Togg also makes headbands, bandanas and even hats! You can find them here: http://www.froggtoggs.com/cooling/the-chilly-pad.html
4. WATER RIDES! – When scheduling your fast passes, be sure to schedule water rides like Splash Mountain and Kali River Rapids during the hottest part of the day. Usually right after lunch works best. Don’t forget your resort pool either! Mid afternoon is a great time to take a break from the action and head back to the resort for a dip in the pool. And when your swimming is done, you can just head on back to the park for afternoon touring once the sun starts its descent from straight overhead.
5. MAKE THE MOST OF INDOOR PAVILIONS! – The Land Pavilion and The Seas With Nemo & Friends both offer multiple attractions and activities indoors, and can both be large time consumers. When planning your day at Epcot, work around these pavilions and return to them when you need a break from the sun. Both will allow you a large amount of time spent indoors where it will be nice and cool. Both also work well during rain spells too!
6. WEAR LIGHT CLOTHING! – This includes colors of clothing and weights of clothing. Thin, airy materials will allow for adequate air flow, and light colors will be less of an attractant to the sun. Keep this in mind when pre-purchasing clothing before your trip too! So often we see that “perfect” Mickey shirt, but remember material type is important! Uncomfortable kids are cranky kids! This goes for adults too! Also pack light! A backpack is a must with my family, but if you find yourself with a larger than expected load, take advantage of the lockers that are at the parks.
7. BRING A PERSONAL FAN/MISTER! – Personal fans and misters can be purchased at a variety of places. You’ll want to bring one with you, or else you’ll be paying high costs for the ones in the park. But they can be a godsend! Which ever you choose, fan or mister, you’ll be thankful for it. Be sure to pack extra batteries!
8. PACK YOUR PERSONAL HYGIENE! While these items might not actually have an effect on whether or not you are hot or cold, they can affect whether or not you feel comfortable throughout the day. Travel size deodorants, travel size personal wipes, and even body refresher sprays can go a long way to help you feel fresher after sweating. All can be purchased in convenient size containers in the travel section of most retailers, and in many dollar-type stores. And while you’re there, make sure to pick up several travel size bottles of sunscreen. The larger bottles will be great at the resort pool, but you won’t want them taking up large amounts of space in your backpack. But grab several, you will want to apply, and reapply during the day!
9. ICE CREAM! – Walt Disney World has some of the greatest ice cream treats around. Save your snack credits by bringing in your own mid-day snacks from home like granola bars, goldfish and crackers. Flying in and worried about packing room? You can ship non-perishable items to your resort with your name and reservation number indicated on the outside of the package, and pick them up when you arrive for check in. Pack these snacks for during the day and use the snack credit for aMickey Ice Cream bar or a Dole Whip Float!
10. HAVE PATIENCE! – Most importantly, have patience! Undoubtedly, the summer time at Walt Disney World is the busiest time of year. Lines are going to be long, crowd levels are going to be high, the sun is going to be hot and the air is going to be humid. But remember, everyone else is going through the same thing you are! Getting frustrated or irritated with a line or another guest will do little more than get you heated. If you pre-expect that these things are just a part of the experience, and just accept them and keep going, then your day will flow much easier, and everything will go smoother. When your day goes smoother, you’ll enjoy everything more!
Melissa Furches is a travel agent who specializes in Disney travel. If you are interested in booking your own family vacation to Walt Disney World, Disneyland or Disney Cruise Line, please contact Melissa at firstname.lastname@example.org or on facebook at http://www.facebook.com/Must.Meet.Mickey. All travel agent services are free, and can take the questions and worries out of planning your family vacation! Contact Melissa today!