Top 5 ways to be a good guest at Walt Disney World – Do’s and Dont’s

| May 17, 2015 | 11 Replies

This weekend is the start of Star Wars Weekends at Disney’s Hollywood Studios in Walt Disney World. The event runs from May 15- June 14, 2015. This event draws huge crowds and it is a great time to bring your manners to the park. I would like to make some suggestions to help you have an enjoyable visit to a crowded theme park.

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  • DON’T wait to purchase your theme park tickets until you arrive at the park- Yes, you can purchase them at a ticket window outside the park but you can save yourself some valuable park time by already having your tickets. If you are an onsite guest, DO select your FastPasses in advance if you already have your tickets purchased.
  • DO follow instructions when waiting for the parking lot tram– Believe it or not, WDW cast members are there for your safety. DON’T– I couldn’t believe the number of people that walked out in front of moving cars! The cast member was telling them to stay back and to stay behind the yellow line so the parking tram could pull out. The guests just didn’t listen. FYI- When you get on a tram they do the safety spiel 3 times. Once in English, one in Spanish, then again in English. The cast member had already said no further boarding when a man and woman walked up, pulled open the door and stared at the cast member who is telling them there is no further boarding. When someone gets on the tram anyway they have to start the safety spiel over again, delaying all the guests that paid attention to the cast member.  I guess their time was more valuable than everyone else’s. Every time I go to a WDW theme park I see people doing stupid things while boarding or riding the trams. I just wonder what these guests would do if they were injured because they didn’t listen to the instructions?
  • DO bring sunscreen all year round. It’s also a good idea to put it on before you get to the parks. Be sure you put it on your children. DON’T start spraying the sunscreen in a crowded area. It does get hot and humid in Orlando and you should reapply it often. Also be sure to drink plenty of water. If you are sensitive to the heat, I highly recommend the cooling towels that are available. They really do help in the heat.  We soak ours in ice water and pack them in a ziptop bag so they are ready for use in the park.

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  • DO pack your patience and your manners! Everyone is looking to have a great time when they visit Walt Disney World. If everyone used their manners and showed a little patience it would make for a much better experience. If you would like to see a parade don’t arrive at the last minute and crowd your way into the area when there are people that have been waiting for a long time for a good spot. If you have small children most people will allow them to stand in front if  you ask nicely. Also, if you are up front on the sidewalk DON’T put your child on your shoulders and block the view for the people behind you.  I know this is a hot topic but the parades aren’t just for the children. There are many young at heart adults that are seeing the parade for the first time also!
  • DO listen to the Cast Members – when you are on the ride listen to the safety instructions. There have been injuries when guests ignored the message to keep their hands inside the boat at Pirates of the Caribbean. DON’T use flash photography if you have been told it isn’t allowed. Nothing ruins the attraction experience more than when some guest insists on taking those flash pictures. I can guarantee that they aren’t going to turn well enough to print them so why bother? Flash photography is only good if your subject is less than 1o feet away. A new trend seems to be using selfie sticks while on the attractions.  This isn’t allowed so take those pictures when you get back outside. I also find a smile and a thank you goes a long way when you are dealing with a Cast Member.

If you follow these suggestions I believe you can have a much better time when you are visiting Walt Disney World. ‘Til next time, See you in the parks!



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Category: Disney World

  • Mark Bustamante

    Kathy I would add one more DON’T-DON’T stop walking in the middle of the walkways/paths/sidewalks. Please move to the side so that other guests can keep walking and foot-traffic keeps flowing. Also, walk with the major flow of traffic. It makes for a smoother journey through the parks.

    • Jeanne

      Great point, Mark…I would also add that if you are In a group of more than 2 or 3, to please do NOT all walk side by side…people move at different speeds and to try to get around a group of 5 or 6 people moving slower, is very difficult. Also, for the crowd that is coming from the opposite direction, it’s pretty tough to make way for a wide string of folks, and there are bound to be collisions. Someone could get knocked down, especially the little ones.

  • MrNico

    And DON’T take your ipad to the parks! Get a real camera and use it to take pictures instead of holding up a huge dorky slab and ruining others’ photos and views, especially at parades, shows and most important of all, the fireworks!

    • Stopthemadness

      OMG! Thank you! People look absolutely ridiculous with their iPads sticking up I’m the air!

  • Sue

    I would add
    don’t stand in like holding a place for 10 more family members. It rude to barge in like ahead of people who have been standing and waiting. Keep your family together and get in line together.

    Don’t stop and stand in the middle of the path to look at maps and decide what to do next.

    Keep your distance from people ahead you you with strollers and scooters. No body needs to be injured on vacation by aggressive drivers. They aren’t battering rams.

    • Sue

      No edit button. Sorry for typo mean to say line! But came out as like.

    • Ghost Man

      You beat me to it. I was going to say the same thing.

      I hate it when people get in line, move forward, and then encourage the rest of their party to cut in line to catch up to them. Our last trip, this happened numerous times.

      Standing in the middle of a path is too common. Do these people also stop in the middle of the road to look at a map? No common sense. It amazes me to see a group of people stand in the middle of a walkway and care less about the traffic jam they’re causing. The area around It’s a Small World is really bad.

      I’ve had parents run me over in strollers all the time and I’m a fast walker. When the park first opens, they run with their strollers. I’ve seen a few times the parent would hit a bump and the stroller almost flips over. The scooters are bad too. These people think they have the right to mow people over if they don’t move out of their way.

      • Mike Hromyak Sr.

        I have to use a scooter and find that people just don’t care about the scooters . they cut right in front of you and for a fyi…the scooters dont stop on a di n e. There is always some forward movement when you let off the “gas”. My wife is always 25 feet in front of me because i have to stop for inconsiderate people so I don’t. “mow them over”. I know scooters are a touchy subject but their use calls for consideration on both parties.

        • 0taqueen

          I do think, especially after reading comments here and elsewhere, that there’s a certain amount of “micro aggression” happening about scooters in the Park. Bad actors who abuse Guest Access Cards can create a resentment among those who feel they’re being deprived of “special” treatment; people with disabilities can feel their presence in the Park is not being acknowledged. People cut off, walk in front of, disregard, and disrespect scooters, as though they’re somehow “in the right” when, really, they’re contributing to a kind of negative atmosphere that affects all of us. Would you rather be “right,” or happy? You do have the power to choose.

  • KimR

    I want to reiterate a bit on the scooters. I AM handicapped. At home I don’t use a scooter because I limit my activity. Visiting WDW when you have difficulty walking and standing is not possible normally, but just because you are disabled doesn’t mean you can’t have fun with your family. Rental scooters are the best solution.

    Here are a few things people need to know:

    1) just because you won’t look down to acknowledge I’m there doesn’t mean I’m going to disappear in a cloud of pixie dust when you get in my way. I am there, I am a person, I paid the same entry fee you did. If you step in front of my scooter while we are all moving you will get hit and depending on how fast we are moving you may get hit hard.

    I had a parent have his children hold hands, dad in front, mom at back. We were in line waiting for Fantasmic. For some reason, Disney has never found a solution to seating the handicap. The line for wheelchairs moves from one side of the big line to the other several times, so we cross in front of walkers each time.

    So this “gentleman” thought he had the best solution by forming a chain. I was close enough that he actually had to step over my front wheel to pass in front of me while everyone was moving. I had slowed down as much as possible but had to continue moving or the crowd behind me would have taken over.

    So the “gentleman” stepped over my wheel, then turned and pulled the next child forward while picking him up. This left a little girl directly in front of me with nowhere for either of us to go. The Mom was at the back of the line with two other kids. I was unable to slow enough to avoid hitting the girl, so she got hurt and he blamed me. My answer back was I was in the line I belonged in and they were crossing the line (which they should not have been doing). I was traveling at the same rate as everyone else. If he had not tried to find a better place in line, by jumping over my wheel, the little girl would not have gotten hurt.

    That same evening, I had some who I think thought he was going to miss the bus to the hotel. At least that is the most generous interpretation I could come up with. If you’ve taken any of the bus transportation, you know there is a queue to wait until the bus comes. What a lot of people don’t notice is the exit just to the left of the queue. The exit had a chain with a picture of a wheelchair.

    This is the wheelchair entrance. The bus has to kneel low enough so that a ramp can be placed and the wheel chair can board the bus to be locked down.

    So I’m heading to the wheelchair entrance, at a fairly steady pace. It was late and there were not many people around (we exited during the fireworks) so didn’t expect to have a problem. The bus starts pulling in and I was slowing so that I would be stopped at the chain. Out of the corner of my I, I saw a flash and knew it was a person. By instinct, I stuck my feet out to try to stop. There is no brake on these things, when you want to brake or stop you just release the lever that adds speed. The only other was is to move in reverse, but my family directly behind me.

    He actually jumped over my scooter, clearing it by inches and the bus hadn’t stopped. So I got hurt trying to slow the scooter. I hit him so hard he flew before rolling several times. He got up with a limp, which made me kind of glad (terrible of me) but his injuries were the result of his own actions.

    After the bus stopped, a Cast Member came over and asked to wait. He then asked the man and his wife too wait in the queue. There was no one else in line yet and including my family there were less than 20 people riding the bus. When it was his turn to leave, I stood up and said he didn’t have to race to the sign since he wouldn’t be able to board there I explained it was a clearly marked handicap entrance. He told me to F— off. Interestingly, the bus driver waited until I was done lecturing to give him time to exit. I could swear after he exited, the bus driver met my eyes in the mirror and smiled. As a Cast Member, he couldn’t say anything neither could the cast member in the booth who watched the whole thing.

    I have a last one, but it is both a Do and Don’t. My daughter worked at Disney for their College Program. The first Don’t is don’t go to the parks on Christmas week, especially on Christmas Day. People think that since it’s Christmas Day no one will be there because they will be celebrating Christmas. First of all, that is what everyone thinks. Second, Christmas Day is a time when the attractions have such long waits people chose to go get food. Bad news again, the restaurants are just as busy.

    My daughter was working at one of restaurants. If was counter service so they take your order and payment at the cashier. The order shows up at each station and is put together by the expidizers.

    So this man came up to her register and started yelling because it was taking too long to even get s hamburger. There’s no good answer to that. Thankfully, the woman behind him got mad at him. She got his attention and said to him “how dare you, yell and scream because you thing it’s taking too long. This young women is here, away from her family on Christmas, probably for the first time. You are yelling at her about a a cheeseburger. You chose to be here on the busiest day of the year, so shut up p.” Mom, whoever you are, I love you. I hope I can pay it forward.

    So DO Please remember tha cast members are people an treat them fairly.

  • CJK

    Thanks for the great article.