There are two things Disney wants you to know before your Disney vacation (to the most magical place on Earth)!
As a travel agent with Destinations To Travel, I can tell you that these two things are pixie dust and Dole Whip—or magic and necessity, depending on your perspective!
We all want our trips to go as smooth as possible, so start with these “must do’s” before your bags are packed! Here’s everything you need to know before your Disney vacation.
My Disney Experience
Adding the My Disney Experience (MDE) app is an absolute necessity!
Not only can you view important park information, like maps and operating hours, it’s where you’ll change your park reservations if you need to during your trip.
Park reservations are now mandatory for all ticket holders.
MDE Must-Do List
- Install the app on your phone and sign up for your free account. Use a password that you won’t mind sharing with your Travel Agent. They’ll need to access your account for scheduling your FastPasses and dining reservations.
- Fill out all the important information under “My Profile.” Contact Information, Mobile Device Notifications (turn those on!) and add a Payment Method. You need a credit card on file for Mobile Ordering, charging merchandise back to your room and table service dining reservations.
- Link your reservation information. Make sure you can see tickets and hotel information. If you don’t see it, click the small refresh button. Sometimes it takes 24 hours to update. Make sure your entire travel party is listed and/or added.
- Does something look wrong? Have your travel agent check your account. If you’re still stumped, you can call Disney IT directly at 407-939-7765 or your travel agent can call for you!
Tickets, Passes, & Reservations
One of the biggest changes and fears right now is purchasing your tickets but not getting into the park you want on the day you want.
With the use of the Availability Calendar from your desktop or laptop computer, you’ll make those selections yourself through MDE. Carolyn Tiberi from Best! Day! Ever! With Carolyn and Destinations to Travel offers this advice:
“There are so many important reasons for a guest to have their My Disney Experience account!
First and foremost is getting those Park Pass Reservations! I can’t stress the importance of making sure my guests understand they need a park reservation AND a park ticket to enter one of the theme parks at Walt Disney World.
These reservations are made in their MDE account under Disney Park Pass System and need to be made as soon as possible after purchasing tickets.”
Know Before Your Disney Vacation
With the situation at WDW being so “fluid” (your travel agent’s least favorite word right now) checking in on a regular basis before your trip and during your vacation are vital.
Disney has put everything you need to know about the new rules and regulations in one place and they call it, Know Before You Go.
You need to visit this site before and during your WDW vacation—things can change even while you’re there!
Know Before You Go
- Resort Hotel Opening Dates: Not everything is open! Check to make sure your hotel is open for your dates of travel. If not, reach out to the Disney Travel Company. If you’ve got a Travel Agent from Destinations To Travel, they will already be working on an alternate resort for your stay.
- Up to date travel information for Florida: If you’re from out of state, what you need to know is right here. Quarantine information, limitations on gathering sizes and executive orders.
- Health Guidelines: Masks, park restrictions, new rules and what safety measures Disney is providing. This also includes the health acknowledgement form you’ll be asked to sign. You’ll also find what extra steps are being taken to ensure the cleanest rooms possible.
- Transportation Services: Up-to-date information on all Disney services that are running. Transportation from resorts, parks and Disney Springs and Disney’s Magical Express. Minnie Vans, parking limitations, loading and unloading zones are also mentioned here.
- Everything that’s closed: Or opened! Restaurants, attractions, rides, tours and everything else you can think of.
- How to Limit Contact: ways to social distance and still get what you need. Online check in, automatic check out, bell services and where to virtual chat with a Cast Member.
I asked Carolyn how she as a travel agent uses the tools on the Know Before You Go website.
“In my role as a travel agent, I frequently check the Know Before You Go site and alert my guests to any significant changes that may impact their visit such as changing park hours or restaurant closures.
A few weeks prior to a guest leaving for their trip, I revisit the site and inform my guest on information that is of highest priority so they don’t encounter any unpleasant surprises such as arriving at a park with an unacceptable face covering.
A link to the Know Before You Go site is included in my initial correspondence with a guest right up to my Bon Voyage email before they head on their way to the Most Magical Place on Earth!”
They can take care of setting up your My Disney Experience account, book your dining, make your FastPass reservations and make sure all of your plans are in order with all of the new Disney guidelines.