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Planning A Short Trip To Walt Disney World – What Works And What Doesn’t

July 29, 2019

Normally I have a whole week to spend at Walt Disney World. Multiple days in the Parks are planned, fastpasses are made, and a list of restaurants are written down.

But, this time, I only had 3 short days at the most magical place on earth.

So, how did planning for a short trip differ from planning for a long trip? And were there things that I wish I did differently?

Planning A Short Trip To Walt Disney World – What Works And What Doesn’t

Planning A Short Trip To Walt Disney World - What Works And What Doesn't

What Worked

Park Hoppers

When you take a longer trip, Park Hoppers aren’t always a necessity. But, when you’re on a tight schedule, you may want to consider splurging on Park Hoppers.

With our limited time frame, Park Hopping played a huge part in maximizing our time at Walt Disney World.

Since we had utilized Extra Magic Hours at Animal Kingdom, the Park got very crowded that day. We took this as an opportunity to hop on over to Hollywood Studios for awhile before hopping over to Magic Kingdom later that evening.

We kept an eye on Fastpasses during the day, which helped us decide where we should go. Because we took this approach, we were able to see and do more than if we had stayed at Animal Kingdom.

Choosing really early and late flights

This is pretty obvious. The longer you’re in Orlando, the more time you have for the fun stuff.

Even though early flights are hard to wake up for, it was completely worth it to be in Magic Kingdom by 10am.

By flying in early in the morning on Sunday and leaving late at night on Tuesday, I was able to get 3 full days in the Parks even though I was only in Orlando 1 full day.

Woody at Toy Story Land in Disney’s Hollywood Studios

What Didn’t Work

Staying at Resort I’ve never stayed at before

When I get the opportunity to stay at a new Resort, I like to walk around and check things out.

Since this was the first time I was staying at Disney’s Caribbean Beach Resort, I was really looking forward to exploring the restaurants, pools, the different areas, and having a little bit of relaxation.

However, with only 3 days to do squeeze in everything I wanted to do, I didn’t get to spend as much time at the Resort as I wanted to.

Looking back, I think staying at Pop Century would have been a better idea. I really like Pop Century, but more importantly, I’ve also stayed there many times before. Because it’s a place I know pretty well already, I wouldn’t have felt bad about not spending much time there.

While I love staying at different Resorts on property, In the future, I’ll save new Resorts for those longer vacations.

Using a “short vacation” as an excuse to go all out

No matter how much time you have at Disney, you will be tempted to pack your day with activities. It’s just something that happens while you’re at Disney.

I used to ignore the signs my body was telling me because I wanted to do and see as much as possible. This resulted in blisters and cramps that were so bad, I would find it hard to get out of bed in the morning.

While I’ve gotten better at listening to my body, I still overdo it at Disney. Because I am conscious of this, I do try to slow down and relax, when I find the chance.

But, I used the “short vacation” as an excuse to put in longer days than I normally would. I didn’t take into consideration that 3 super long days can be just as exhausting as a full week at Walt Disney World, no matter how much I tried to relax.

While I felt completely fine while I was in Florida, that all caught up with me once I got home. It took me so long to catch up on my sleep and get my energy level back up.

Will I continue telling myself to slow down and relax more during my future trips to Walt Disney World? Absolutely. Will I listen to my own advice? I guess only time will tell. is not authorized or endorsed by, or officially connected with The Walt Disney Company, or any of their affiliates. For official Disney information, visit

Hawaii Destination Specialist

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