If you are traveling with children to Walt Disney World, then one of my best tips is to carry a book bag. I have always loved book bags because they keep your hands free thus being able to hold those little hands, but also always access things you need. Before I give you my top 5 items to put in your book bag to be prepared for a day at the park, let me give you my book bag recommendation. We have had a Land’s End book bag since our kids were babies and used it as their diaper bag. They seem a bit pricey at first, but they often run sales and their construction, strap padding, and abundance of pockets are worth it. Right now, they are running a 40% off sale so the bags are even more affordable! I have had our bag for 8 years and 5 of those years it was used everyday, but still looks nearly new (despite a few stains).
Now that you have a great book bag to carry with you, here is what you should think about packing in it.
1. Ponchos or rain gear
Did you know it rains in Florida…a lot? We have never been to Disney World or on a Disney cruise that it didn’t rain at least 2-3 times in the afternoons especially. Years ago, before I was married and was still traveling with my parents, my Mom purchased the Disney World ponchos when we got trapped by the rain one day. She kept them and carried them with us every trip, if it rained we pulled them out. Not to long ago, she gifted them to me, and now I carry them in our book bag. They fold up nicely in the bottom of a book bag. When (not if) it rains, you can duck into a covered place, pull them out and go on about your day.
It is no secret that snacks can be expensive at Walt Disney World. There are no restrictions on snacks that can be brought into the parks though. I always stock our bag with crackers, fruit snacks, granola bars, carrots, and apples. If possible, buy these items before you leave home or at least before you get onto Disney grounds. I have also carried bottles of water into the park as well, which can later be refilled if needed. I also usually put a few pieces of candy for those moments when you just need to have some chocolate!
3. Small toys or Activity books
Even with the best planning, you may have to wait in line for a ride or attraction and that can be hard for even the most patient child. I put a few little toy animals, cars, and crayons and paper in the bag so the kids can pass the time in line. You could also include a book about the hidden Mickey’s in the park too, which is a fun activity.
4. Camera and Photopass Card
This seems obvious, but it is so nice to have a spot to store the camera and Photopass card together. You don’t have to worry about the camera around your neck, getting wet on the water rides, or accidentally falling. Having both together makes it easy as well to just hand both to the photographer for character pictures and pictures in special spots.
5. All the Other “Stuff”
At one point on our last trip, I counted 25 things in our bag by the end of the day! The kids took their light up wands, princess crowns, pirate swords, and autograph books and pens. We had cameras, snacks, drinks, ponchos, maps, stickers. It was full (and a little heavy!), but we didn’t have it in our hands! Usually I carry the bag, but at one point this handsome guy I call my hubby carried it for the day!
Have a wonderful next trip and a very Merry Christmas!
*Sarah Garner was born, raised, and continues to live in Central Illinois, which is a very long way from the Mouse’s home in Florida. A former public school teacher, turned homeschool Mom, she enjoys reading, quilting, and cooking (but really only has time for the last one). She has been to Walt Disney World 17 times and her family recently took their first Disney Cruise. She has been married to her high school sweetheart for 11 years and they have a 7 year old son and a 6 year old daughter.