Is it your dream to head to the happiest place on earth? Do you have questions about how to plan your Disney vacation? I know for us, as first-timers(at least with our own family), it was an overwhelming experience. When we were younger, you bought tickets and off you went. Now it takes months to plan your Disney vacation, but thanks to these books, it is a lot easier.
If you go to any bookstore, there are a TON of guidebooks out there to help you plan your Disney vacation. So where do you start? I think it depends on your family and the ages of the people going with you. Our sons were already teenagers by the time we took them, so it was less stressful because we didn’t have to worry about character breakfasts.
Anyway, back to the books. There were two choices that made planning for our trip easier. Keep reading to find out which books helped to make our Disney vacation the best it could possibly be.
This trip was so exciting to us because this is the first time we were taking our boys to Walt Disney World. Yes, they are a bit older than typical first time visiting kids. Believe it or not, there are plenty of things to do at Disney for tweens and older teens.
But, with that aside, this Mom wanted to make it a memorable experience. Planning it took many, many hours(some pretty late into the night) and a few arguments. Thank goodness for our Disney vacation planning books.
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The Unofficial Guide to Walt Disney World:
The first book that I picked up at the bookstore as soon as hubby told me that we were going to Disney World and needed to start planning was the Unofficial Guide to Disney World. I had joined a few Facebook groups geared towards going to Walt Disney World, and this was a frequent suggestion.
Even though we didn’t stay on Disney property, I liked how they broke down all the lodging options so that someone who was new to planning a Disney vacation would have all the needed information right at their fingertips.
Another feature of the Unofficial Guide is the anecdotes shared by people that have already been to Walt Disney World. So you get the author’s viewpoint and observations and recommendations from real people.
A bonus in this book is that each park in Walt Disney World gets its own chapter. Since we weren’t going to Animal Kingdom, I could skip that chapter all together. Can I tell you again how much fun it is to plan your Disney vacation?
Another fun option is to use these guidebooks as momentos. Or, have the kids use a travel journal to help decide what sights they want to see.
Birnbaum’s Walt Disney World Guide For Your Vacation
Similar to the Unofficial guide, Birnbaum’s The Official Guide comes with coupons as well, most of which are geared towards the younger kids. Since our kids were teens, we didn’t get that version. But, at the bookstore where I work, there are tons of families that purchase this title.
Plan Your Disney Vacation With Fodor’s Walt Disney World
Fodor’s Walt Disney World is one of my favorite guides for travel anywhere. I used one recently on a trip to Jamaica, even though we have been there several times before. Fodor’s guides are extremely comprehensive, and some may actually feel overwhelmed when reading them. But the benefits are amazing, such as:
- Ultimate experience guides that explain the attraction and share color photos. I definitely love visual guides, so I know what I am looking for and don’t wander around aimlessly.
- Pull-out maps with more details. While guidebooks are great, carrying them around is not. Pull-out maps are great for sticking in your pocket or backpack, and don’t take up a lot of room.
- Itineraries and top recommendations. Helpful itineraries will help you plan and make the most of your time in Orlando. We include tips on where to eat, stay, and shop as well as information about nightlife, sports, and the outdoors. “Fodor’s Choice” designates our best picks in every category.
- Gorgeous photos and illustrations. Full color magazine-style features like “Doing Orlando and the Parks Right” will help you customize your trip. “A Man, A Mouse, A Legacy” delves into the interesting background of Walt Disney and includes an encompassing timeline of the park’s history.
You really can’t beat such a comprehensive book while you plan your Disney vacation.
So these are my favorite Disney vacation planning books that helped to make our trip as smooth and organized as possible. It may have been a lot of work, but it was so worth it in the end!