*Booking your Fastpass+*
Timeframe: 30-60 days out
The time you can book all your fastpass+ all depends if you are staying on Disney property or not. If you are staying on Disney property, wherever that might be, you get to book them 60 days in advance. If you are staying off property then it is 30 days in advance. I'm going to focus on staying on Disney property.
You will do all your fastpass+ booking through the My Disney Experience website or app - I do recommend making your fastpass+ reservations on the website vs the app and also from a desktop and not your phone, it just makes it easier and I found a few glitches using the app so I didn't want to risk it.
Fastpass+ are like gold - and each person with a park ticket gets 3 per day (that you can book in advance - once you are there and use all 3, you can book more)
You will want to go back to your notes of the attractions/entertainment for each park and the things you really want to see. It's also a good idea to know what has the longest wait times because obviously that is where you'll want to use your fastpass+
Check out this article on how fastpass+ works and it also provides a link to each park to show you what the hottest attractions to fastpass+ are.
In my opinion, you want to book all your fastpass+ for the afternoon, when the park is the busiest. If you arrive to the park at rope drop (a term that means when the park opens) you should be able to hit lots of rides, even some of the popular ones with very minimal wait.
What we did was - arrive to the park at rope drop - hit as many attractions or entertainment as we could, eat lunch (usually early around 11ish) then headed back to our hotel to relax, swim, or nap. We went back to the park in the afternoon and that is when our fastpass+ were booked for.
Let me tell you how nice it is to show up at the park around 3 or 4pm when it is SO busy and be able to walk right on some of the most popular rides!
Once we finished all our fastpass+ we would either just walk around and take it all in or do some of the rides that are never a big wait (the carousel or teacups at Magic Kingdom are always good time fillers) - our original plan was to stay for fireworks at Epcot and Magic Kingdom and then see the Fantasmic show at Hollywood Studios - so our afternoon fastpass+ and other stuff would hold us over until it was time for that....but as it goes with having small children our plans didn't work out like
Here are more links to help you understand how Fastplass+ works
Timeframe: 2-3 weeks before leaving
If you are lucky enough to be staying on Disney property then you are entitled to an awesome grocery service! How nice would it be to order groceries before your trip and have them at your resort the day you get there? Well I'll tell you how nice....very nice.
By ordering groceries ahead of our trip, it helped me plan out our breakfasts (one less thing to worry about as you're trying to get up and out to the parks in the morning), it helped me to have snacks available for my kids to eat throughout the day (so we aren't paying major $$$ at the parks) and it helped to have a quick dinner or snack back in our room.
We spent about $100 in groceries but I know that it saved us hundreds at the parks. Of course we still had snacks here and there and ate out, but there were a couple nights we went back to our room and made pizza for dinner then went back to the park.
So how does this magic service work? Head over to GardenGrocer.com to see all about it. It is pretty self explanatory and there is even a list to see if they will deliver to your resort (if you are staying anywhere on Disney property it should deliver but definitely check)
You can find the other installments of this series below:
Part 1 - here
Part 2 - here
Part 3 - here