You encounter weather every second of every single minute of every single day of every single week of every single month of every single year. It is as inescapable to you as breathing. Sometimes it is hot, sometimes it is cold, but every day, it is, and every day, you go about your normal life, uninterrupted by the presence of the unimportant weather. Why should it be when you’re dealing with the weather at Disney World in Florida that it seems it can make or break your vacation experience?
In addition, the way that you experience the weather seems to become so much more complex. You no longer experience just “hot” and “cold.” There are new layers and depths to your misery – humid, rainy, scorching, and – though this one is nothing new, it becomes much more important when you are trying to plan your activities. The weather is the only part of your Walt Disney Vacation that you will have no control over what so ever.
This is not entirely true. You can do a few things to predict the weather, but for the most part, the best thing that you can do is cope with what you get. This may sound like an unfortunate truth, but in reality, it is much more positive than it sounds. Being prepared can make the weather at Walt Disney less of a make-it or break-it factor. You can keep bad weather from ruining your vacation, and feel free to let good weather enhance it!
So, being part of the instant gratification race, a.k.a. the human race, you probably latched onto the idea that you can, at least to some extent, predict the weather. More than dealing with it, you want to predict it and plan your vacation accordingly. Though this will not prevent all run-ins with disagreeable weather, it isn’t a terrible idea to look up the weather in advance. It is more likely that this will help you with what to pack than keep you from encountering a rain shower, but it is worth the time and effort you will spend on it.
So what is this magical process that allows you to predict the weather? It’s called the Internet. A little bit of digging and you can find average rainfall and temperature for each month of the year. Use this as a springboard for your planning – Are you more of a January, 72 degrees and 3.2” of rain, or an October, 85 degrees and 2.4” of rain? You can also find information detailing humidity, and even averages and records for specific dates, if you really want to get detailed.
Unfortunately, in regards to predicting the weather, detail won’t do you any favors. It is almost a rule in Central Florida that it will rain at least once a day during the summer, and though it is less frequent during the winter, you will still find yourself hard pressed to go your entire vacation without getting a little damp. Hot days in Florida are unforgiving and cold ones, nearly always a surprise. Each will be, in its own way, a challenge.
Should You Base When You Visit Walt Disney World On the Weather?
This is why you shouldn’t base your entire vacation planning process around the weather. Any time during the year that you choose to vacation to Walt Disney World Resort, you will find that the weather presents unique challenges and enhancements to your experience. Plus, even if you could get the weather perfect for yourself, it is unlikely that every member of your family or vacation party would feel the same. Some people prefer to be warm, while others would rather be shivering.
Even if you could meet the weather needs of everyone in your vacation group, you’d find that the difference between in and outdoor temperatures would pose an issue. Some ride queues are air conditioned to be “comfortable,” when in actuality, some believe that they are turning guests into guest-popsicles. Other buildings can get a tad warm inside if they get too crowded. Basing your vacation plan on the weather will yield disappointing results. Better to go based on your financial needs or based on how crowded the parks are. That at least may yield some result similar to your hopes.
To Poncho, or Not to Poncho
So what can you do? No doubt, by now, you are feeling disappointed. You feel that you are sentenced to have your vacation spoiled by bad weather, and there is nothing you can do about it. This is where coping comes in. In this case, coping is synonymous with packing. You can pack things to help fight the effects of the weather – whatever it may be.
The most obvious weather that you need to pack for is rain. You need a pair of water resistant shoes – you really shouldn’t be walking around Disney in sandals anyway. Hello, blister city. The big question is, to poncho or not to poncho? The answer is poncho, definitely – always poncho. Being wet greatly increases discomfort, regardless of if you are hot or cold otherwise. Also, it is a good idea to bring your own poncho, as the Disney ponchos are all identical, and it becomes easy to lose your family in the crowd if they have no visual differentiation to set them apart. You can even buy cheapie ponchos and decorate them yourselves before you go – a fun family activity that prepares you for your Disney vacation!
On hot, humid days, lugging water bottles, paper fans, sun hats, and sunscreen around the park sounds like a pain. It may be a bit of a pain, but when you make it through the day with no sunburns, no headaches, and no fainting, you will know that a few extra pounds in your bag was worth it. On these days, it is a good idea to throw a sweatshirt in your bag, or around your waist for those over air-conditioned queues. Also, never underestimate what a quick trip to a water park or water ride can do to help you stay cool and enjoy yourself!
On the colder days – and yes, Florida can be cold – dress in layers! Even when the weather gets cold in the early morning or late evenings, it can still warm up mid-day. Wear a tank under a tee topped with a sweatshirt and long but breathable pants. Wear good socks and put a pair of thin cotton gloves in the pocket of your sweatshirt. It is also a good idea to wear a hat. Keeping your extremities warm will help keep your body temp up and keep you comfortable throughout the day. Also, no one in your family will say no to a stop by a coffee shop for some cocoa or java.
You can take control of your response to the weather, even if you can’t take control of the force of nature itself. So, pack and plan ahead so that you can keep cool (or warm) and have fun regardless of how hot, cold, humid, rainy, or most likely all of the above, your Walt Disney World vacation is.