There are so many amazing resources out there when it comes to planning a trip to Walt Disney World. Don’t believe me? Try typing “WDW Vacation Planning” into Google…and get over half a MILLION hits. As a former Cast Member, let me assure you that not all of those are reliable sources. But there is still so much information out there, that it’s easy to get overwhelmed.
Even though I’ve been to Walt Disney World more times than I can count, this last time was special; it was Miles’ first time! So, even though I probably could have figured things out on my own (just based on my time there and previous trips), I really wanted to do it right. And the research began.
I probably looked about half of those 500k sites that Google brought up, and I figured it would just be the right thing to do to help you not have to scour the web like I did. Here are my top sites to help you plan your next trip to Walt Disney World:
I’ve always been a firm believer in going straight to the source, and this is no exception. Once you start booking things (and I mean everything, including tickets, hotels, FastPasses, and dining reservations), My Disney Experience is one of the most visually appealing ways to keep it all together. Though not always completely user-friendly (a lot of loops and having to re-sign in), you won’t find more up-to-date information about the theme parks – including any closures or ride restrictions.
One of my favorite parts of planning is choosing where to eat. There are so many delicious options throughout the WDW Resort, that it can actually be really hard to narrow it down, especially if you’re planning a shorter trip like we were. AllEars.net is my go-to site for restaurant menus. They’re thorough and updated regularly (both the menu items and prices), and you can find menus for EVERY dining option, including the food carts scattered throughout the parks. (NOTE: At the time I was writing this, the site was down, but it should be back shortly.)
If you can get past the kind of basic look of the site (sorry!), you’ll be hard-pressed to find a better step-by-step guide to planning a great vacation to Walt Disney World. The site discusses every factor your should consider when planning your trip – the best times of the year to visit, taking your budget into consideration, when to book hotels, FastPasses, etc. They have released a book available on Amazon, but most of the information is still available on their site at no cost.
(4) WDW Prep School
If you’re anything like me, lists are about as fun an activity as there is. And WDW Prep School has some really useful templates. The main reason this site isn’t ranked higher for me is that, since my trip planning, they have begun monetizing. I’m all for trying to make some money, but I think everyone loves a resource a little more when it’s free… Despite that, you can find some handy tips on the blog and podcast, especially if you’re planning a trip for a unique age group like preschoolers or teens.
Like I said before, there are countless sites out there about Walt Disney World and specifically planning your next vacation. These are just my favorites. Any other great ones I should know about?