How to have a stress-free Disneyland vacation during the holidays

in Disney, Disneyland Resort

How can the Happiest Place on Earth get even more magical? With holiday cheer, of course! Disneyland Resort becomes the Merriest Place on Earth every year when the holiday season begins. And we’re here to make sure the hustle and bustle of Disneyland at this time of year bring you joy, not stress. Keep reading to discover our top Disneyland travel tips for your holiday visit.

Disneyland's Sleeping Beauty Castle

Have a general plan in mind, but don’t try to plan your whole day

Sometimes, the most stressful days happen when you try to plan every hour. It’s great to have a general plan in mind, especially if you’re spending only one day at Disneyland Resort and you want to visit both parks. But don’t get stressed if not everything goes according to plan. Instead, have a general idea of the rides you want to hit, shows you can’t miss, and snacks you want to try. Then, take everything one hour at a time. Get the FastPasses and Advanced Dining Reservations that you can, and take the rest of the day as it comes. Sometimes, the most magical Disney moments occur when you least expect them.

Disneyland Holiday Decorations

Don’t let the crowd get you down

Let’s face it: the holidays can be the most crowded time of year to visit Disney Parks. And often, crowds can be a major reason why so many guests decide not to do certain activities while at the parks, or they keep people from visiting the parks altogether. But Disneyland Resort is crowded during the holidays for a reason. Everyone wants to experience holiday magic, just as you do. So don’t let crowds deter you from experiencing certain attractions or having a good time. Take your vacation slow, and be sure to ride the attractions and see the shows that you came to Disneyland for. Family-favorite attractions like Haunted Mansion Holiday and it’s a small world will probably have long queues, but it’s worth braving crowds for the things you love.

Christmas tree in Disney California Adventure

Set a budget

The holiday season brings amazing new merchandise and food to Disneyland Resort, and if you’re like us, you’ll want to purchase everything the moment your vacation begins. But spending more money than you planned is one way to add unnecessary stress to your holiday vacation. Instead, set a budget for yourself, and make sure everyone in your family is on the same page. Budget for souvenirs, like the Christmas tree ornament you purchase every year, the Minnie Mouse plush you know your child will ask for, and even the sweatshirt your spouse will want to purchase after getting soaked on Splash Mountain after dark. And budget for food, including your daily meals and all of the snacks you want to try at the Festival of Holidays.

The Golden Horseshoe

Try something new

There is always something new and exciting to see or try at Disneyland Resort. If you’re making a special trip for the holiday season, you’re in for a real treat. Whether you see the Buena Vista tree lighting ceremony for the first time, you try a new food inspired by a different culture at Festival of Holidays, or you get to meet your favorite character in their holiday outfit, there are so many fun ways to try something new at Disneyland Resort. Keep your eyes open while walking around the theme parks, because you never know what new magic you’ll discover during this time of year.

Stay at a Mickey-approved hotel

Disneyland Resort is conveniently located near a variety of hotels in Anaheim, CA, but the best ones are approved by Mickey Mouse himself. You can’t go wrong with staying on property at Disneyland Hotel, Disney’s Grand Californian Hotel & Spa, or Disney’s Paradise Pier Hotel, all of which are steps away from Disneyland Resort. But if these aren’t in your budget, not to worry. Disney has cultivated a list of Good Neighbor Hotels that provide guests with excellent experiences during their Disneyland Resort vacations. Good Neighbor Hotels have Disney’s stamp of approval, and we wouldn’t recommend anything less. Staying at a Disney-recommended hotel will ensure that your vacation is magical from start to finish.

Image copyright Disney

Use a travel agent

Whether this is your first Disneyland Resort vacation or you’re a long-time Disneyland fan, we recommend using a travel agent for your trip. We love Academy Travel, an Authorized Disney Vacation Planner that can help you plan out your entire vacation, from booking your Advanced Dining Reservations to figuring out the best times for you to catch every show at both theme parks. Using a travel agent is no extra cost to you and can even save you money since Authorized Disney Vacation Planners know how to find the best discounts on Disney vacations. There is so much to experience during the holiday season at Disneyland Resort, and travel agents are a great way to keep from getting too overwhelmed.

Disneyland Holiday Decorations

What are your Disneyland travel tips for visiting during the holiday season?

in Disney, Disneyland Resort

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