8 Things I Have Learned As A Disney World Local

Living in Orlando, Florida definitely has its perks on its own, not too far from the beach, the home of world-class tourist destinations, the night-life is poppin’, and there’s never a lack of food or shopping options. However, living literally right off of Disney property, 5-10 minutes away from any of the theme parks has perks of its own and when you utilize these perks enough, you learn quite a few lessons. I have decided to share 8 of the lessons I have learned that make my time at Walt Disney World much more enjoyable. 

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You don’t need to go to the Magic Kingdom from rope drop to the kiss goodnight to have a full, fun day. 

This is a common misconception among many people I have spoken with. For some reason, it is thought that you need to arrive at the park right when it opens and spend your entire day there. Yes, there is a lot to do and see at the park, but realistically unless you pre-schedule your entire day down to the hour you will not see it all. More times than not I arrive at the part anywhere between 12:00 pm and 2:00 pm and leave right after fireworks or even earlier and still go on *most* of the rides and even character meets or shows that I wanted to do for that day. Now, I know most people are not exactly able to just live right near Disney so they prefer to spend as much time at the park as possible and that is completely understandable. I just am saying it’s perfectly possible to enjoy the entire park and all of the lands and not have to wake up before the sun to get there.

If you decide to go to the parks later, visit Disney Springs for an early lunch and bus to the parks. 

This is one of my favorite things to do actually. Wolfgang Puck’s is basically my favorite restaurant on Disney World property at the moment, so I will always find a reason to grab some mac & cheese there prior to a fun day at the parks. It’s also a nice little hack to enjoy two sections of Disney and utilize the Disney transportation system.

Most times it’s just as fast – if not faster – to just walk to the parks or Ticket & Transportation Center rather than taking the tram. 

Many times once you board the tram you have to wait for the rest of the guests to board until the last call. Most time I prefer to walk to the parks or TTC, not only to save time potentially but to actually enjoy the walk. Some people enjoy the tram as part of the experience, so this is something I do when I go to the park with friends or family that do not visit them often.

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The monorail and ferry take approximately the same amount of time.

Depending on the length of the lines, the actual time it takes to travel from TTC to the Magic Kingdom is basically the same amount of time. Personally, I prefer the monorail because I’m secretly a child stuffed in a 24-year-old’s body. I’m just kidding, kinda. But really, I love the monorail because it does bring me back to being a child and how exciting it was to go THROUGH the Contemporary and then seeing the Magic Kingdom. I am also prone to being cold super easily, therefore, I tend to stay away from the ferry since the breeze on the water tends to make me feel like I’m standing in Colorado mid-December in a bikini.

It is actually fastest to bus from the Ticket & Transportation Center to the Magic Kingdom. 

Many people don’t realize this is even an option since most times cast members will direct your straight to the monorail or ferry, however off to the right of the is the TTC bus loop! I was skeptical about this being a faster option, however, it only took 5 minutes from the time I sat down on the bus to the time I stepped off the bus at the Magic Kingdom. Since many people don’t utilize this, there is typically no line.

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Bring a refillable water bottle, a backpack, and a small umbrella or poncho. 

Florida is a very strange place to live. One minute it is hot as hell and sunny as can be, the next it is a complete downpour. It is best to stay prepared for whatever the not-so-reliable weather can throw at you. I prefer bringing my own refillable bottle and have it refilled at Quick Service stations. This is just because I track my water intake on my bottle, but this also cuts down on waste which is always a good thing.

Disney Springs is your one-stop-shop for all your holiday/birthday shopping needs.

Disney Springs has become an amazing shopping district with something for everyone, even those who don’t want Mickey Mouse all over their purchases. When I say that there is something for everyone, I literally mean everyone. Babies, children, teens, and adults and so many options for each. There are also many different products to choose from, even things that are the furthest thing from “touristy”. Clothing, toys, home decor, kitchen & cooking supplies, makeup, and literally so much more. This is a location that is hard to leave empty handed.

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Having a Walt Disney World Annual Pass is 100% completely worth it!!!

After you purchase your annual pass, which you can finance with a monthly plan and a down payment, once you visit the park(s) about 3 times you have gotten your money’s worth! The really cool thing about the Disney Annual Pass system is that there are many different pass options. The pass that I have (and use at least twice monthly) give me access to all four parks, the water parks, the golf courses, access to download *ALL* of the Photo Pass photos that I have taken at any of the Disney locations, and so much more (including discounts). A year of Disney is never a bad idea.

Well, those are my 8 lessons I have learned while living right outside Orlando and I hope you enjoyed the read! Feel free to drop a comment with your thoughts or things that you have learned on your trips to Disney! 😀

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