First Time at Disneyland? Tips You Need to Know

First Time at Disneyland? Tips You Need to Know

Navigate Disneyland like a pro and make your first trip as magical as possible

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Heading to Disneyland might feel like you’re gearing up for an adventure—and you are. But, to navigate the parks like a pro, you’ll need more than just an app and a dream—you’ll need a plan. Don’t worry though, from snack hacks to shortcuts, we’ve compiled a guide packed with tips we’ve learned (some the hard way) to make your Disneyland trip as magical as possible. Let’s dive in!

Snack Strategies

Snacks at Disneyland aren’t just food; they’re part of the experience. Take the legendary Raspberry Macaroon at Jolly Holiday Bakery Cafe—it sells out ridiculously fast. Our top tip? Use the Disneyland app to mobile order these coveted treats first thing in the morning. This approach not only secures your snack but also saves you from standing in what can be soul-crushingly long lines.

Ride Like a Pro

Did you know that every ride stays open until Disneyland closes? Yes, even if you hop in line for Space Mountain at 11:59 PM, you’re going for a ride. This strategy is perfect for adding an extra ride to your day without sacrificing time that could be spent exploring elsewhere. Plus, Disneyland’s atmosphere at night is special. The dimmed lighting, the cooler air, and the illuminated castle create a backdrop that makes every late-night ride feel even more magical.

To Genie+ or Not to Genie+

Genie+ can be your best friend on days when the park is packed. It offers faster access to rides, which is invaluable. However, it’s not a must-have for every visit. On days when the crowds are lighter, or if your visit is on the shorter side, skipping Genie+ could be a smart move. Save that cash for a splurge-worthy meal or for exclusive merch. It’s all about weighing the cost against the potential time saved, and Genie+ tends to make more sense if you’re looking to knock out a lot of rides. 

A Little Patience Goes a Long Way

Asking for specific seats on rides can significantly enhance your experience. Want the front seat on the Incredicoaster for that unobstructed view? Or maybe you prefer the back seats for that extra bit of thrill on Thunder Mountain? Don’t hesitate to ask cast members. They’re usually more than happy to accommodate your request if you’re willing to wait a few extra minutes. This little bit of patience can transform a great ride into an unforgettable one.

The Last-Hour Hack

Main Street stays open for an hour after the rides close, specifically for shopping. This is the perfect time to pick up your souvenirs without worrying about them all day or taking time away from attractions. While most items are plentiful, keep an eye out for limited edition or exclusive merchandise early in the day—they can sell out fast, and you’ll want to factor that in, too.

Bonus Tips

Download the Disneyland App: Before you even step foot in the park, download the Disneyland app. It’s a lifesaver for checking ride times, mobile food ordering, and even finding the nearest restroom. 

Arrive Early: The first hour after the park opens is when lines are shortest. Take advantage of this time to hit the most popular rides before the crowd arrives. 

Plan for Rest: It’s easy to get caught up in the excitement and try to do too much. Find time to rest during the day, preferably with a Mickey-shaped treat in hand. 

Stay Hydrated: With all the walking and excitement, it’s easy to get dehydrated. Bring a refillable water bottle or purchase one inside the park. There are plenty of refill stations throughout the park.

Make Memories: Lastly, don’t forget to take lots of photos and videos. Disneyland is as much about creating memories as it is about the rides and snacks. Whether it’s a photo with your crew in front of the castle or a selfie with your favorite character, these moments are priceless.

Let’s Stay in Touch

For the latest in Disneyland strategies, food reviews, and travel secrets, follow PTM on TikTok and Instagram. We’re so happy you’re here—let’s make your next trip a great one!

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