I often mention my 6 step planning process but have never had a podcast about the details of each step. Today, I discuss that and have a free download to help you work through the process.
I also have a quick tip about people attending one of the parties who want to use FastPass+.
These are notes from this episode. There’s much more info included in the audio so be sure to listen to the episode for a better explanation.
In this article
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My 6 step planning process
Fill out the trip planning worksheet as you work through the steps.
Step 1: pick your dates
Decide when you want to go. Use my charts to help figure out the least crowded times.
Step 2: choose a place to stay
On-site guests get Extra Magic Hours, the ability to make all dining reservations 180 days before their trip begins, FastPass+ reservations 60 days beforehand, MagicBands and the ability to charge things to their room.
Off-site guests will usually get more space for less money. FastPass+ reservations for off-site guests are made 30 days beforehand and off-site guests use their park tickets to enter the park and check-in for FastPass+ reservations.
Some resources to help choose an on-site hotel:
- The pros and cons of every Disney World resort
- A hotel picker quiz
- Chart listing details of every Disney resort
Step 3: make a daily plan
Choose where you’ll be each day of your trip and then decide which park tickets you’ll need to execute that plan. Check out my suggestions on planning each day.
Step 4: choose your dining options
After you know where you’ll be each day, decide where you’ll dine that’s close to where you’ll be to avoid spending too much time on transportation. Check out all my dining guides to help decide where to eat.
Step 5: plan your park touring
Figure out your touring plans before it’s time to make your FastPass+ reservations. I suggest showing up before the parks open, touring the first couple of hours without any FastPass+, using FastPass+ reservations for late morning and early afternoon, and then leaving the rest of your day more flexible.
Check out my touring plans which are mostly structured that way.
Step 6: add extra magic
You can do this in many ways, including playing Tinker Bell, printing Mousekeeping envelopes or ordering an in-room celebration from Disney Florist.
Quick tip of the day
People attending one of the parties, such as Mickey’s Not So Scary Halloween Party or Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party, can enter Magic Kingdom as early as 4:00 (even though the party events don’t begin until 7) and can book FastPass+ reservations for the 4-7:00 timeframe. There will not be any FastPass+ reservations available during the party (for many nights, they won’t be needed) but you can use them from 4-7:00.
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