There's nothing quite like the excitement of taking a
trip to Disney. Sure, you may spend the few weeks before vacation thinking about waking up early to get to the parks at rope drop, parking the stroller in the perfect parade-watching spot, and getting that holiday card-worthy family photo in front of the castle. But somewhere between the excitement and the actual trip, there's the dreaded question: What to pack for Disney World? And how can that Disney packing list include all your theme park essentials?
In theory, rounding up your must-haves for an amusement park is easy and effortless, a sprinkle of "pixie dust" coating over the pre-trip preparations. In practice, a trip to Magic Kingdom (or any other Disney park) entails packing for any and everything, from
getting soaked on Splash Mountain or spilling a Dole Whip on your kid's favorite Mickey shirt. But not to fret, we've got you covered.
From the obvious to the obscure, this Disney survival guide includes everything you'll need for a successful trip to the parks — all under $30. Because stressing about what to bring to the
Most Magical Place on Earth (or the Happiest Place on Earth, if you visit Disneyland) should be the least of your worries. We at Scary Mommy only include products that have been independently selected by our editors. We may receive a portion of sales if you purchase a product through a link in this article. 01 A Lightweight, Water-Resistant Daypack With 27,000+ Reviews
One of the most important things you’ll need on your trip to Disney is a good, sturdy backpack to hold all your essentials. This pack from Venture Pal is lightweight, durable, and made of water-resistant fabric to stand up to anything the parks throw at you. And the built-in wet pocket will come in handy for when that Mickey hat gets wet on a water ride.
Helpful Review: “Bought multiple packs to try at Disneyland this spring. First day I loaded this one up with 2-liter [bottles] of water, snacks, camcorder equipment, light jacket, GoPro equipment. Room to spare but not too bulky. Wanted to capture every moment with my granddaughters and have space for those special souvenirs that just ‘had to be bought now.’ With the additional straps, this snugged down great so taking the pack on and off for each ride/attraction was simple. It was dragged, dropped, pulled on, snagged, smashed, and jerked, and held up like new. I loved the waterproof pocket on the inside which, though designed to store our stuff, was a lifesaver for protecting sensitive items during rides that tend to splash a lot of water all over the rider.” 02 This Slim, Essentials-Friendly Running Belt
For the immediate essentials, a running belt is a great tool to have at the ready. This moisture-wicking and water-resistant belt can house your phone, keys, and some quick cash or cards for easy access throughout the day.
Helpful Review: “Exactly what I was looking for! I use this belt to hold my phone and house key while running. It is super thin and flat to the body, so the only added thickness to your body will be the size of whatever you put in the pouch (for me, just the thickness of my phone.) When it's empty, it looks like there is nothing on you at all. I also really like the fact that there are dividing pockets in the pouch so that my key doesn't rub up against my phone and scratch it.” 03 A Sturdy Metal Mickey Mouse Stroller Hook
If you’re visiting the parks with a stroller, this handy hook might become your new favorite hidden Mickey. The coated metal hook is big enough to “fit a wide variety of handles,” according to the product description, and sturdy enough to hold onto your diaper bags, totes, or any park merch you accumulate through the trip. Plus, it’s on theme.
Helpful Review: “I got this for our Disney trip. It is perfect to hold our water bottles as we navigate the parks, it was also great for our little big kids to hold on to when we were walking through big crowds! It works really well when exiting the park when it’s miles of people!” 04 A 5-Star Rated Travel-Sized (But Well-Stocked) First Aid Kit
The Human Repair Kit from Welly is a cute, travel-sized addition to your theme park essentials that will come in handy if scrapes or bumps happen on your trip. The kit comes with bandages, antibiotic gel, hydrocortisone, and hand sanitizer so that you’ll be ready to treat any boo-boos and get back to the magic.
Helpful Review: “When I travel for a long vacation, this is my go-to travel kit for my checked baggage. I use welly bandaids on my kid, and they have surpassed my expectations about how sticky and durable they are. I prefer to carry my own bandaids and not question if I’m getting something that may contain latex. Love the little tin as well.” 05 Anti-Chafing Balm To Combat All That Walking
A must-have for amusement parks in the summertime, BodyGlide’s anti-chafe balm comes in a retractable container perfect for throwing in your bag. Gone are the days of sensitive thighs from walking around for hours in unbearable heat, this highly-rated balm is allergen free, long-lasting, and safe for the whole family to use.
Helpful Review: “I'm an avid Disney visitor. Considering [Florida] is basically Hell on Earth, shorts are ideal for walking in heat from 9 am to 12 am. In the past, I've tried baby powder and deodorant for chafing, but they have never lasted more than a few hours. This body glide stuff actually lasted, and I literally felt NO tenderness in my inner thighs by the end of the day. I'm talking being able to wear shorts two days in a row at the parks with no injury, which I haven't been able to do before! I recommend this to anyone.” 06 Travel Tissues For Tears Or Messes
A travel essential that will come in handy with every sneeze or unexpected cry, these pocket packs of Kleenex are a must on your next Disney trip.
Helpful Review: “I use these Kleenex packs whenever we travel and they’re great. They’re absorbent and thick while being soft. The packs are small enough to throw into your bag. Overall, I would recommend Kleenex pocket packs.” 07 A Pack Of Travel Wipes To Sweep Up Kids’ Snot
Somehow, your kid is going to end up sticky or snotty–or both–and that’s where these wet wipes from Boogie step in. These gentle saline wipes are unscented and pediatrician-recommended to clean up any random gunk that accumulates on your kids (or your) skin throughout your day at the parks.
Helpful Review: “These are the ones. They're better than just water: the saline dissolves things you don't want sitting on your skin and does some actual cleaning, the herbal oils (which you can't smell unless you have an even more sensitive nose than I do and that's rare but not impossible) are cleansing and hydrating and promote healing of injured skin. I use these for anything you might use any kind of wet wipe for, and they're good for all of it. Highly recommend.” 08 A Reliable, Attachable Hand Sanitizer
High-touch surfaces are abundant at the Magic Kingdom, and hand sanitizer is your best friend to combat those germs. These Purell travel-friendly hand sanitizers are perfect to clip on your bags, keep in the car, or shove in your pocket.
Helpful Review: “I love these jelly wraps for so many reasons. I have one on my work bag, one on my purse, and one on my hiking bag. I keep an extra one and put it on my belt loop when I go into the grocery store. That way, I don't have to take my purse in, I just take this, my keyless entry and phone (and use touchless payment). Less to carry means less to touch and less to wipe down with sanitizing wipes.” 09 A Parade-Approved Outdoor Folding Blanket
If you’re planning on catching a parade or two while you’re visiting Disney, consider getting this foldable outdoor blanket to sit on. Its tiny size when folded won’t take up too much space in your bag, and the lightweight, waterproof features it boasts when unfolded make it the perfect addition to your Disney packing list. Plus, it comes in four cute designs.
Helpful Review: “I'm so glad I researched a while and decided on this one. There are so many good things about it. It folds up surprisingly small. It is easy to fold up the ‘correct’ way as well. Happy with lovely design and color. I like the material. My primary use for this is during the summer, and I didn't want a flannel blanket, or one that would make you sweat sitting on it. This material is perfect! It's kind of like a soft canvas. It's a very good size as well. Perfect. Highly recommend it. Loved it.” 10 A Stylish, Roomy Fanny Pack That’s 5-Star Rated
If you want more space on your hips than a running belt can provide, try this fanny pack from JanSport. The two separate pockets leave enough space for your phone, wallet, keys, and more, without bulking up.
Helpful Review: “I purchased three fanny packs to try for my two-week Disney World trip, and this one was by far my favorite. It's the perfect size to hold everything, except a water bottle, unless you really stretch it. The two pockets kept my stuff semi-organized. The strap fit me well, and was able to be used by others in our group ranging from a women's size two to men's size 38.” 11 Disposable, Full-Coverage Ponchos
Whether it actually rains during your time at the parks or you just end up getting wet on a ride, ponchos are vital to the Disney Parks-going experience. Can you buy ponchos at the parks? Sure, but they’ll be way more expensive than just stocking up before your trip. This family pack of 20 disposable ponchos comes in sizes for kids and adults and has a fun variety of colors to choose from.
Helpful Review: “My family and I bought these ponchos for our Florida vacation trip. I expected to use them just for the occasional afternoon thunderstorm. But the week that we arrived had heavy rains. Our first morning in Disney had torrential downpours. I was so thankful that we had bought these ponchos for my family of eight. We all stayed dry, and it was great to have the colors to spot each other and the different sizes for the adults and teens and for the little kids. I wasn't sure how they would hold up as they feel thin, but we had to take them on and off as we went on the different rides and only one of them ripped where I think a kid tried to put an arm through the wrong spot. The only problem two of us had a first in that torrential downpour was that the neck flap at first pointed down and in and water ran down our front, as soon as we turned that flap out, no more water came in and we were dry.” 12 A Festive 5-Star Rated Wet Bag That Has 12,000+ Reviews
Having a wet bag on hand at the parks will hold any clothes or swimsuits that get wet during your trip. This 5-star option from Bumkins is roomy, reusable, and perfect to throw in your day bag to catch any wet items throughout the day. And if Mickey doesn’t suit your style, Bumkins has options with Minnie and Ariel, too.
Helpful Review: “I was surprised at how big it is, You can put quite a good amount of things in it. I love that it has the pattern in the back, but it also has a clear front side so you can see your items inside. Features such as the stitching and zipper were great with my item, no issues there. I tried putting a damp face towel to see how well it held inside. And I had no issues of a leak or water dripping out of it. This is something I recommend for parents to take to the park, beach, or pack their child's water clothes in, especially if they are going to a summer camp! It has a small hook for you to put a key ring on or a keychain, which also helps if you wanted to latch it on to a backpack.” 13 Classic Disney Ziplocs to Hold Your Essentials
If you’re scared about your phone or any other special items getting soaked on a water ride, these Pixar Ziplocs are the answer to your worries. Not only are they good for storing snacks or smaller items you don’t want to get lost in your bag, but they’ll also protect items from getting wet if your bag gets drenched in a rainstorm or on a ride.
Helpful Review: “My kids swear it’s cool to pick one every day for their snacks. They like them, and the quality is good.” 14 A Waterproof Phone Lanyard to Protect Your Phone on Water Rides
Another direct solution for protecting your phone from water is investing in a waterproof lanyard. This two-pack of waterproof lanyards comes with adjustable straps so you can keep your phone around your neck, wrist, or in your bag–without worry of water damage. And with over 56,000 reviews and a 4.6-star rating, you can feel confident your tech (or whatever you stash) will be safe.
Helpful Review: “Amazing, I floated on a river for over five hours. This case worked perfect the entire time. I used it with an IPhone 8+ and didn’t have any issues with touch or screen response. I actually went live a few times and the video and picture quality was perfect. I also chose this one because of the larger clasp, I read reviews where people had purchased other brands with thinner clasps and the clasps broke. It’s a must buy if you are doing anything around water.” 15 Cute Organizing Pouches For Your Luggage, Bags, Or Purse
These 5-star-rated mesh organizer bags are a fun way to separate items within your bag so you can have easy access to everything from snacks to lip balm to sunscreen. With eight different color options, assigning a different color to each member of the family is a great way to ensure everyone’s stuff stays tidy during travel.
Helpful Review: “The pouches are sturdy and zippers work well. I bought them to put to bring organization to my BOM quilt blocks prior to piecing them together each with a piecing board to use when traveling. I will probably get more, can't beat the value.” 16 A Long-Lasting & Powerful Portable Phone Charger Pair
Keeping a portable charger or two on you is the best way to avoid running out of juice while at the Disney parks. Each charger in this two-pack from Miady comes equipped with two USB outlets (meaning yes, you can charge up to four products at a time with the right cables) in a compact exterior. It’s either this, or wait in the long line at the tree stumps across from Rapunzel’s bathroom in Fantasyland to use Disney’s chargers.
Helpful Review: “Glad we had these during our last trip to the Magic Kingdom. I brought this two-pack with me on my last trip and was glad I did. Several of my friends forgot to bring theirs. These charged a total of four cell phones quickly off a single charge. Plenty of battery left for us to be able to take pictures of the fireworks at the end of the evening.” 17 Soft Brackets To Keep Your Cloth Mask From Smothering You
If you’ve ever been to a Disney park during the thick of summer, you know that the heat and humidity make it feel like you’re gasping for air on a good day (we’re looking at you, Florida). This mask bracket insert is a great product to bring along on your trip if you’re looking for a way to add more breathing room to your fabric masks. This five-pack of brackets will keep you and your family breathing easy and — bonus! — fog-free if you wear glasses.
Helpful Review: “I have to wear a mask all day at work, and not being able to breathe in a disposable or thick cloth mask, I ended up getting some real thin pull-up masks. The only problem was they were so thin and tight that they kept creeping into my mouth after talking, making me look like a sock puppet and making it harder to breathe freely. I got these mask brackets, and it really keeps the mask off your mouth and gives much more surface area for breathing. I never go a day without one now.” 18 A Water Bottle With A Built-In Filter
Carrying a reusable water bottle during your Disney trip is a great hack to save money and stay hydrated. This Brita bottle holds 36oz. of water and has a built-in filter so you can sip that Disney water fountain water worry-free. And with more than 35,000 reviews, users swear by it.
Helpful Review: “I have been looking for a water bottle that would help me drink more water, reduce waste, save money (by not having to buy bottled water), and still be filtered. I had another Brita water bottle, but it was wider and more cumbersome to carry around. I saw this particular one on Instagram and decided to try it. I love it. The flip top is cool and keeps the straw from being exposed to germs. And it's slender enough to fit in car cup holder and in backpacks, totes, bags, etc.” 19 Comfortable, Breathable Walking Shoes With Full Support
Possibly the most important thing you can wear on a trip to Disney is not your Mickey ears but rather the most comfortable pair of shoes you can find — the average Disney guest walks an estimated 7 to 10 miles per day during their vacation. This comfortable under-$30 option comes highly-rated and promises breathability and arch support.
Helpful Review: “I do a fair amount of walking aiming for three to five miles a day so comfortable sneakers are a must. I have purchased several brands that are comfortable, but due to the way I walk, they wear the soles down very unevenly, making it unsafe to walk on wet or snowy/icy surfaces. I decided to try these because of the reviews and price as I have to replace my sneakers after about four months or so and would rather spend $30.00 than $60.00 These have been great, very comfortable. I have been wearing these almost daily for about 10 weeks, and they are holding up well I will probably be able to go another month or so before replacing them. They are also very cute! I highly recommend!” 20 Bandages To Protect Blisters After They Happen
And if you
do end up with a blister or two, these bandages from Welly are meant to protect and heal up your blisters. Specially designed to fit your heel, these Kicker Stickers keep germs out and provide the protection and support your feet need to keep hitting the parks day after day. Helpful Review: “I absolutely love the quality of the Welly bandaids, they stick great and will stay on for days. The designs are super cute, and the kiddos just love them!!” 21 A Comfy Cotton Hat To Shield You (& The Kids) From The Sun
Keeping you and your family safe from the sun is a must during the summertime, especially when you’re walking on the hot pavement in the parks all day. A cute Mickey hat for you and the kids is a great way to stay dressed for Disney and sun-protected, no matter what.
Helpful Review: “Great and comfortable hat. I had a hard time finding a hat that was bigger than a toddler size and smaller than an adult size. This was easily adjustable so my 8-year-old son could wear. Perfect for sunny days at Disney and much more affordable than park prices.” 22 A 5-Star Rated High-Powered, Portable Mini Fan
If you’re visiting the parks on one of those sweltering days of summer,
cooling products are going to come in handy for the whole family. This handheld fan is long-lasting (13 hours of use time on its low setting) and provides strong wind to keep you feeling refreshed. Helpful Review: “This little guy goes with me everywhere! I’m always hot, not just because I live in Florida but because I just run hot! I take it with us to the park and stick it into the stroller cup holder to keep my 11-month-old cool, I put it next to me while working at home, basically this little pink unicorn is my BFF. On one charge, it gives you hours of fan time, it charges quickly, and you can angle the fan based on where you want the airflow, which by the way, is very strong with all three settings.” 23 Quick-Acting, Long-Lasting Cooling Towels
An added layer of cool can come from this four-pack of cooling towels. Simply soak, wring, and snap these towels to activate cooling for up to three hours. Plus, they come in a variety of cute colors and have a portable carrying pouch with a carabiner attached for easy travel!
Helpful Review: “We could not have survived Disney World without these handy dandy ‘Chilly’ towels! They helped keep us cool all day. We had them around our necks, my kids wore them as bandanas around their foreheads lol, at some point, I wrapped one around my thigh to relieve my hot legs!!! Lol I'm sure people thought I was crazy haha they also served as a ‘blanket’ in cool setting areas inside the restaurants with high A/C for my kids.” 24 Broad Range Sunscreen With Water-Resistance
Of course, no Disney packing list would be complete without a high-quality sunscreen included. Neutrogena’s 70 SPF Sheer Touch sunscreen provides broad spectrum protection for under $10 and 80 minutes of water resistance to keep you shielded from the sun even in the sweatiest of conditions.
Helpful Review: “If you are looking for something light to wear over your regular moisturizer, this works very well. It looks white straight from the container but goes on sheer and makes your skin look more radiant. I wore this while out and about this weekend and didn't get burned from the searing sun. With temperatures in the 90s all weekend, it was great to know I wasn't going to get sunburnt. So I used this on my face and arms, and it didn't affect my skin at all. No breakouts or oily residue. Just comfortable, clean, complete coverage. I'm happy. I'll buy this again.” 25 And Soothing Sunburn Relief Gel
If one of your clan
does fall victim to a sunburn, fear not: Sun Bum’s aloe vera gel is here to soothe and moisturize. Their aloe vera gel is infused with vitamin E and tea tree oil, making it calming and hydrating for sunburns. Plus, it’s vegan and hypoallergenic. Helpful Review: “It gives you SO much more relief than regular aloe gel & I don’t feel that normal dryness that comes from traditional aloe, which is great because I have sensitive finicky skin. Plus, on top of that, OMG, INSTANT RELIEF. Like before it arrived, I was at times holding back tears & normal skin soothing lotions & aloes only seemed to actually make it hurt more. I will forever keep this as a staple in my medicine cabinet. It’s so magical I’m sure I’ll find ways to use it for more than just sunburns.” 26 Packs Of Liquid I.V. To Replenish Your Electrolytes
Remember that whole “walking 7 to 10 miles a day” thing? And also the whole “it’s super hot and humid” deal? Combined, those factors equate to losing a lot of fluid through perspiration. After a day at the parks, re-hydrating and recovering are musts. Liquid I.V.’s Hydration Multiplier Packs restore electrolytes and essential vitamins to help your fam fully recover faster than they would just drinking water.
Helpful Review: “As a nurse, I am a little critical of things, but I will give things a chance and try them out. During volunteer working at an MS bike race, I met a lady with MS that uses this and swears by it. She had some extra packets and let some of the home riders have it at the start/finish line. I had bikers coming back to me the next day begging me for more!! I was sold. Now I keep it in my house, and it is amazing how well it works — and living in FL, I need it a lot. I’ll drink one when out on the boat, working in the yard, etc. it is amazing how much better I feel and how less ‘worn out’ I am. I contacted the company on Facebook first, and they sent me a free sample of five, just for the cost of shipping. (About $4). Try it out!! You will be sold.” 27 An Adorable Collectible Pin Lanyard For The Kids
Pin collecting is a fun activity that older kids can partake in, and with the help of this starter Stitch lanyard, they’ll be ready for all the best trades from park to park.
Helpful Review: “This lanyard is ridiculously cute. The fabric of it is comfortable and doesn't itch when it rubs against my neck. It is stretchy, but doesn't seem to stretch to the point that it will lose its shape. The stitching and clasps also seem quite sturdy. I 100% recommend this lanyard.” 28 A Portable, Battery-Powered Neck Fan
For cooling relief that won’t fail, this battery-operated neck fan provides portable, hands-free relief on a scorching day. When set to natural wind mode, the wearable fan can last for up to 16 hours which has you set for a full day at Disney.
Helpful Review: “This is awesome!!! It has many different speeds. This is going to be amazing for summer. It truly does cool you off. I love the fact that you can charge it and you don't have to change batteries constantly. I highly recommend especially for the price.” 29 A Classy, Faux Leather Autograph Book To Last
Collecting autographs is a fun way to document which characters you’ve met at the parks from trip to trip. This faux leather Mickey Mouse journal is a sturdy, spacious take on the autograph book that won’t go out of style between trips.
Helpful Review: “I loved everything about it. The color, the sturdiness, the space on each date is big enough to write several appointments or just make notes. Also, it's a five-year calendar book, in case you need to backtrack some important information. Gave one as a gift, and she loved it just the same.” Hey Ready for more? Sign up for Scary Mommy's daily newsletter for more stories from the trenches.