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DD Tips Blog

planToons began as the blog DocDisneyTips.  The Doc's tips  blogs has now found a new how here on planToons.

BLOG MINI SERIES: How Many Days? Part 1, the 5 Day Trip

Domenic Pisano


How Many Days? Part 1, the 5 Day Trip

This is the first in a short series of blog posts discussing how many days we comfortably book a Disney World Vacation and not feel like we are overly rushed, or have missed out on attractions.

Five days is the absolute minimum number of days I would book to visit Disney World and still comfortably see everything we want to see in the parks.  I said want to, this isn’t going to be a “ride everything” vacation.  There will be some cherry-picking.  With three kids in tow the mission is simple, see every attraction we can, not to see absolutely every attraction.  This is our “budget trip”, with the majority of the expense going to park tickets only.

Two things immediately take a backseat compared to our other trips, food and lodging.  Our lodging takes the form of the cheapest resort we can book.  With a trip like this we are in a hotel for sleep and shower and that is it.  We are not there for atmosphere or theming.  No extravagant amenities are necessary because we simply won’t use them.

CLARIFICATION: My wife does insist on ice machines, coffee makers, hairdryers, and shampoo bottles that seal. Beyond that, most of the resort stay on the 5 day trip will occur from a state of unconsciousness.

Our 5 day trip also eschews most of the table service restaurants for time and monetary reasons.  There will be more on eating at various price points in a future post.

A five day trip is also the least restful vacation for us to take.  We are sure to open and close the parks and downtime is nonexistent.  Knowing your family stamina is important when trying to pull off a five day DisneyWorld vacation.  We have the kind of kids that can handle multiple long days without getting cranky for a nap, which is big reason why we can pull this type of vacation off.

Our current five day park breakdown is as follows:

  • 2 days Magic Kingdom (the younger kids favorite)
  • 1 day EPCOT (the adults favorite)
  • 1 day Disney Hollywood Studios (a family favorite)
  • 1/2 day at Animal Kingdom (not a family favorite)
  • 1/2 day mop up of anything we missed.

If one park closes relatively early, we will hop to a park that closes later to pick off some of the remaining rides on the family attraction check list.  If we are staying at a Disney resort (which we are inclined to due unless we have an offer we can’t refuse) we like to take advantage of extra magic hours to get some extra time.  If we are off peak season, we are happy with what we can accomplish without feeling we missed out on anything we wanted to see.  On peak we still do well but may miss some of the lower hanging fruit attractions.  We have done this trip during some high volume times and didn’t leave disappointed, but perhaps exhausted.

So again, for an attraction only 4 park experience, 5 days is my absolute minimum. With a good plan of attack and some open and close dedication you can have a fun 5 days without thinking you missed out on the attractions.  Just remember it might be an experience, but not necessarily a rest.

Have a Great Trip,