You can look at a hundred different resources and get a hundred different opinions on this matter: how many days should you plan to stay at Disney World?
So much depends on your likes and dislikes, whether you have been to the parks before, and whether you plan to hit every ride, show, etc.
The considerations also have to do with your energy level and how you want to experience your visit.
On one end of the spectrum are folks who want to take it easy. Couples and older guests might choose to casually stroll and look about each shop.
Many older kids and young adults join the ranks at the other end of the spectrum. They want to speedily move from one attraction to another and don’t care if they miss some of the details. We refer to these guests as “Themepark Warriors.”
Making Your Plan
Unless you are used to being on your feet for several hours at a time, or if you are traveling with youngsters, err conservatively when planning the number of days you will need to visit the parks. (And don’t forget all the off-property experiences you will want to add to your trip!)
Always plan to add as many additional days to your park pass as possible to have a slow and peaceful vacation. Even if you rush through a park on your first visit, you can take another day to catch what you may have overlooked.
With the following discussion, we’re going to make some assumptions to give you our overall take on how many days to book your vacation. Keep these in mind as you read the rest of this article to adjust the required number of days up or down based on your family’s specific circumstances.
• You are first-timer who has never been to Disneyland either (as many of the rides are the same or similar).
• Your family enjoys all types of rides and shows.
• Your entire party prepares to spend entire days at each theme park, with limited breaks for dining.
• No youngsters require additional rest periods.
• You plan to get to the parks each day when they open.
• You make full use of FastPass+ reservations.
If you plan your visit during the off-season, get a 5-day pass and allocate 2 days for Magic Kingdom and 1 day for each of the other parks. This should give you enough time to enjoy all of the major attractions and most of the minor ones (if not all) at least once if you.
If you plan to visit during peak periods, increase your stay to 7 days. This adds an additional day for the Magic Kingdom (3 days at Magic Kingdom) and one to use at one of the other parks, or park-hop (4 days for all of the other parks, combined). This will let you pick up the attractions you may have missed due to excessive waiting.
A park-hopper pass is a good idea for longer trips, as it will give you the option to travel between Hollywood Studios and Epcot to pick up any missed attractions there. (It’s unlikely you will ever need to use your extra day for Animal Kingdom.)
A week of Disney World will probably be exhausting, but you should feel like you had a full vacation when it’s time to go home.
For a more leisurely vacation that allows you to do a little more exploration and a lot less running from ride to ride, get a full 10 day park pass. You will have time to do your favorite rides multiple times and enjoy leisurely breaks during the day.
Traveling with Children
Do you have any children younger than about 12 or so? If so, err on the higher side of these estimates. Do you have multiple children with different interests and you want to eliminate headaches? Do you want to see and do virtually everything for your once-in-a-lifetime family vacation?
If so, add a couple more days and plan 10 days in Orlando, with at least a 7 day park pass. (This 10-day period includes arrival and departure days.)
This should be plenty of time for your entire family to enjoy the parks, local attractions, and your hotel pool and other amenities. (It also gives parents enough time to schedule a quiet dinner or two if they have someone to watch their youngsters).
Very importantly, it gives kids plenty of time to play in the water and lets adults relax at the hotel. (Playing in the water is a high priority for all children!)
Of course, if you’ve been to Walt Disney World or Disneyland in the past, there may be a number of attractions you don’t necessarily want or care to do. If that’s the case, a shorter pass may work for you.
This and other great advice can be found in the soon-to-be-released (Summer 2016) VIP Tour Book – Walt Disney World. Keep an eye out on World of Walt for additional information about this exciting new guide book.
How many days do you plan for your Disney vacations?