I've been to Disney World a lot. In my experience, there are many different types of people at Disney, and there are definitely ways to go about your Disney day and ways not to do that, and I figured I would share a little bit of my experience for those of you who aren't as addicted as I am but love going too.
You paid a lot of money to be there. I get it. I paid a lot too. And my goal my first time was also to get on literally everything. But one of my favorite quotes in life is, "Enjoy the Journey, not just the destination". You can go on everything (if you're really good at Fastpassing), but will you really enjoy it? Will you enjoy stressing yourself out to run all the way across the park to get on the Barnstormer? Probably not. Prioritize your time, happiness and sanity over getting on literally everything. You'll thank yourself (and me :)
Don't: BE INTIMIDATED OF CHARACTERS
People: Character meet and greets are a thing. They are one of the big reasons to go to Disney for some people, and it is natural to have zero idea on how to communicate with them. If you aren't a meet and greet person, fine. I really don't have an issue with that. But for those of you who have always wanted to meet Buzz Lightyear or Cinderella or Mickey, have fun with it. They are there to have fun with you, so don't be boring and just get your picture taken. You can do that later. Ask Mickey when he's going to propose to Minnie. Ask Peter Pan if he's afraid of crocodiles. It really is up to you. Just know who the character is and have fun with it.
Do: Take advantage of what is free
Disney is EXPENSIVE. I'm a broke college student so I really do feel you. But if you're there, you might as well get your money's worth. Number one rule at Disney is to utilize free water at restaurants/quick service/ almost everywhere. Stay hydrated and stay healthy: you'll thank yourself later. There are also plenty more freebies within Disney. One of my favorites, and a very popular one, is Club Cool at Epcot. Here you can sample as much free international soda as you want. But be warned: if you stay for too long, you may never leave since your shoes will be glued to the ground at that point. There are s0 many more freebies to take advantage of and I know I chose the basics but seriously, if it's free it's for me.
Don't: Be That Guy
For us common Disney Goers, it's an honor to be That Guy (I'm looking at you, Laugh Floor). But in this sense, I'm referring to you as the buzzkill. The guy who goes to Disney and judges a 20 year old for meeting Chip and Dale and crying about it, or a 50 year old guy for wearing ears. Disney is a happy place for all: don't be a jerk. We all understand that in the real world we would get weird looks for having Goofy or Olaf on our head, shirt, socks, shoes, etc. But this isn't the real world. This is Disney. And by going here, you've given up your macho, cool guy toughness and given in to the whimsical cheerfulness that encompasses this place. So suck it up and put your ears on pal; you're one of us.
Do: UTILIZE FASTPASS
I LOVE Fastpass. People don't realize how wonderful of an invention Disney is giving us with these things. And so few people realize you get 3! You're paying 100 dollars to be there, why not save time waiting in line and just get on the ride? I honestly can't remember the last time I willingly went on a ride I didn't have a fastpass for because they're that easy to get. And notice how I said utilize and not use. Once you finish your first 3, you can keep getting more. So many people don't realize that so there are so many good options later in the day. Get on those rides and have a zipadeedoodah time.
Don't: Record Everything
Yes I understand you are in a sorority/were in a sorority and need to post your instantgram picture of you and your friends in front of the castle. I'm not criticizing you at all; it's a real rite of passage. But don't record every ride. You won't ever sit there on and rewatch them I promise you. Your friends that you are snapchatting them to? They'll watch but be so jealous that they don't care what you send them. Take your pictures off the ride but when you are on them, enjoy it. You just waited a long time to get on that thing so pay attention and take in the experience. I promise it will be worth it.
Do: Be Yourself
This kind of goes along with the whole don't be that guy thing. But I think it's vital to say. Do what you gotta do to have a magical time. You only have so many magical Disney days in your life so if your heart of heart compels you to skip around with your best friend singing the Tiki Room song, by all means go for it. If you want to obnoxiously scream out the lyrics to Wishes while everyone else is shooting you daggers, please do. If you want to jump out in the street and dance like there's no tomorrow during the Move it Shake it Dance Party? Grab a pal! Make it the best day you can because why not? You're at Disney. You do you girlfriend and don't let anyone bring your spirit down.
Don't: Forget about the shortcuts
There are SO many ways to get around the endless crowds at Disney that sometimes just take a little experimenting. A few tips and tricks on this one include the resort monorail. Use it. If you're going before noon or leaving after 5, I guarantee you it will be a heck of a lot faster than any other way of getting to the Magic Kingdom. You also get to see some pretty amazing resorts and hey, that's pretty rad too. On Main Street USA, the shops to the left are all connected as you're walking through the castle. If you're going early in the morning, shoot through there and I promise you'll pass anyone trying to walk down main street and stop in the middle of the walkway to get their castle picture. You can get that later. Go hop on the rides while they have zero wait. Also, who wants to do their Disney shopping in the morning? Weirdos who like to carry bags around all day?
Do: Have fun! Don't listen to everything I've said to a T. Everyone has their own way to Disney and you should make it your own. These are just some things from my experience that have made it that much better for me, but if your sense of community involves taking thirty minutes to walk down Main Street, by all means do it. Just don't be that guy. Follow that one.