It’s official! You have decided to go to Disney World, now your brother, sister-in-law and their three kids have decided to join. Now the grandparents want to join, oh, boy! How do you now manage a large group at Disney?! Step one, Don’t Panic!
Appoint two people as your point of contact.
Even though you are all going together with a common interest in mind, you will still all have different opinions. Which is ok! Just because you are all related or are all a group of friends that have been friends forever doesn’t mean you have to agree on everything you do. For this reason, we suggest appointing one person, or two if that is more comfortable, as your point of contact. The team leaders are responsible for keeping track of all reservations, check-ins and basic scheduling needs. Often times the team leaders are responsible for relaying messages to your travel agent and/or finalizing all reservations on My Disney Experience for those in your large group at Disney.
Connect with your party!
Which brings me to the next tip for managing large groups at Disney. Make sure all parties are connected on the My Disney Experience app. This is crucial in helping parties stay on-time, especially if the group splits to do different activities, which again is perfectly O.K. to do! Remember when I said you won’t always agree on the same thing? Perfect example, Grandma and Grandpa need a break from Animal Kingdom and would like to see Finding Nemo-The Musical, while you and your family want to ride Dinosaur and your brother’s family wants to do Kilimanjaro Safari! Everyone in your party can split up, but your team leaders need to be cognizant of where everyone in your party is, what time you need to meet back up and where! An easy way to do this is to gather everyone’s contact information both in your phone and written, you know, for when your phone dies. If your phone does happen to die, hopefully your team leaders had stressed your team meet-up locations before your large group at Disney.
Wear Matching Outfits!
Now you are at the meet-up location and are unsure of where your party is! Here is your next tip! Wear matching shirts! We know the teenagers in your party will not be thrilled about this option, but when you are at Disney people only notice the awesome outfits you will be wearing and eventually your teenagers will be planning along with you! This takes a great deal of planning but is manageable for your large group at Disney! We suggest by starting an excel sheet and having all party members fill in sizes needed. Another option would be to find a listing online and share it with those in your party. Keep in mind, these shirts are something you will be using to identify those in your large group at Disney, so you want it to stand out but be personal towards your group! A white shirt with a small design probably won’t cut it, you want a bright colored shirt or a large design that can be spotted from a distance.
Only plan what your party can handle.
Here is your next tip for managing a large group at Disney, DO NOT over-plan your vacation! There are a lot of you and most of the time you will be together, which means it will take you time to get from point A to point B. If your large group is in Frontierland and needs to be in Fantasyland in a few minutes, chances are you won’t make it! It is best if you space your time out in your trip, take your time and enjoy the scenery around you! Your best tip will be to plan your fast passes+ in the order you will traveling the park or space them out a great deal when you are booking them. This same tip goes for booking dining reservations. Don’t book a fastpass+ for Splash Mountain or sit down for that parade when your dining reservation is directly after these events. Not only should you plan an hour+ just for transportation, but you should build in the extra time your large group may require for traveling. How much extra time you ask? Well, that depends on your party. If you have a large group at Disney that can walk quickly and knows how to maneuver the crowds you might need less time than a large group at Disney that has slower movers through the parks. However, you are on vacation, do you really want to rush from point A to B?! On the flip-side, don’t plan a fastpass+ too close for when you think your dining reservation will be done. You have a large group that will be eating, it will take awhile for everyone to get through each meal.
Arrive early for all shows!
In addition to not over-planning your vacation, if you plan on seeing any special shows, such as Parades or sit down shows such as the Festival of Lion King, a large group at Disney must plan to arrive at least an hour before-hand in order to secure seating together. However, keep in mind the more popular the show, the earlier you want to get there as one party. Please do not split up and save seats, it’s just not proper etiquette towards others around you.
Celebrate one another!
Lastly, Celebrate one another! There will be tense situations. You could be hot, tired or hangry which could end up in a tense situation. It is at these moments that you want to stop and be grateful that you are in the most magical place on earth! Take this time to celebrate! Celebrate your vacation. Celebrate your family. Celebrate your friendship. Most importantly, celebrate one another! You are all on vacation together, this tense moment will end but your love will continue on, which is why you want to focus on the good core memory moments in life.
That’s it! If you are in a large group at Disne you will want to try out these few things to help your vacation go a little smoother. Keep in mind, these are just a few things, we are sure there are plenty more! If you have any more tips and tricks for fellow readers leave them in the comments!
Ready to experience Disney as a Big Group?! Well, pack your bags and get ready! As an agent that specializes in Disney Destinations, Universal Resort and more, and the official travel partner for Chip and Co, I can help you begin your journey. Just click the Key to the World Travel Picture, email me at Jessica.firstname.lastname@example.org, follow me on Facebook or fill out the form below for a free no-obligation quote!
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