Whether or not we like to admit it, our phones (and their accompanying apps) are our main source of planning.
From taking photos, booking FastPasses, and everything in between, it’s hard to imagine going on a Disney vacation without our phones.
Apps You Need During Planning
Before you start planning your trip, there are a few apps that I recommend looking at.
Knowing what the current prices for flights, rental car, and activities you may be thinking of doing are can really help you choose a budget.
My preferred airline is Southwest. Although I do wish we could assign our seats ahead of time, they usually come out on top when I’m pricing our flights. And as a family of 4, not having to pay for our luggage is a huge savings.
While it doesn’t happen often, we have found better deals on other airlines. This is why I use Skyscanner to compare prices before making my final decision.
Taking luggage costs into consideration, if there’s another airline that can beat Southwest, I go with the other airline.
Since I like to start looking at flights months before actually purchasing them, I like tracking the ever-changing prices. Instead of manually checking each day, I create a Price Alert. If there’s any change in price, they will automatically let me know, so I can decide if I want to buy now or continue to wait.
Last year, I flew back home to attend a wedding for a friend I’ve known since 1987. Since I wasn’t going to have my car, I rented one for the 8 days I was home.
As a Travel Agent, there are some discounts that we have access to. But, Hotwire beat every single one of these quotes.
If you wait to plan until the last minute, there may not be a difference. But, I like to plan ahead. While I still continue to compare prices on many different sites, my preferred place to rent a car is through Hotwire.
Get Your Guide
With all the endless number of things to do and see in the world, it’s no wonder that families sometimes want to venture outside of the “Disney bubble.”
Whether you’re planning an east coast or a west coast vacation, Get Your Guide will give you discounts on places you’re probably already planning on visiting.
Apps You Need For Traveling
Travel days are exciting. But, they can also be long, stressful, and exhausting. So, I use these apps to make my life easier and make traveling a little bit more fun.
Your Airline’s App
We always make sure we’ve downloaded the app for the airline we’re flying with prior to leaving the house. Airport wifi isn’t that fast, so doing it ahead of time just makes your life easier.
I love being able to check in, find my flight number, and see what gate I’m leaving from without having to run around the airport. And if something should change, like a delayed flight or a gate change, you’ll also know right away.
Each airline has their own benefits. But, speaking from someone who primarily flies with Southwest, the Southwest App also comes with free movies and TV shows to watch while in flight. What’s even better is that you don’t have to download the movie or pay for wifi to watch them. So, it’s a win for me.
You knew I couldn’t talk about apps and movies without mentioning my favorite streaming service.
If you have Disney+, you’re going to want the app. There’s no better way to get yourself pumped than with some amazing Disney movies.
Unless you plan on buying some wifi to use on the plane, download a few of your favorite movies before you get to the airport so you have something to watch on the plane.
If you don’t have Disney+, Movies Anywhere is a good alternative.
Formerly, Disney Movies Anywhere, this is another great App to have on-the-go. You know those codes that come in the Disney DVDs? This is where you can watch them.
What better way to spend your time on the plane than watching one of your favorite Disney movies? Just make sure you click “Save Offline” before heading off to the airport. Without wifi, this is the only way you’ll be able to watch your movies on the plane.
Apps You Need At Disney
My Disney Experience or the Disneyland App
This is where everything you have already booked with be located. But, you will also use the app to check into your hotel, book additional FastPasses, mobile order food from Quick Service Locations, unlock your Resort door, and more.
The only downside is that you’ll use the app so much, your phone battery will drain extremely fast. So, you’ll want to bring a good portable phone charger (or multiple).
You may also want to consider changing your wallpaper to a list of all your FastPasses and Dining Plans, so you’re not using your phone more than you have to.
Going hand in hand with My Disney Experience and the Disneyland App, Play Disney adds an additional level of immersion.
Nowhere else on Disney property exemplifies this more than Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge. Using your phone, you’re able to set off sound effects and lights within the land.
In other areas of the Parks you can test your knowledge with trivia, listen to music, and play games.
Since the Parks were closed, there were certain parts of the app that was available to play from your home. But, in order to fully appreciate the app and earn awards, you do need to be in the Parks.
The cars are clean and comfortable. But, the conversations you have with the Cast Members are definitely the highlight of the trip. If it wasn’t for the price, we would definitely be using Minnie Vans for all of our on-site traveling.
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