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While there is much to do on a visit to California without visiting Disneyland. We discussed some of California’s other major attractions here, for example. But if you do have kids with you, and if you haven’t already had your fill of Mickey Mouse and co in the other Disney parks in the US and beyond, then you owe it to yourself to give the magical kingdom a visit. Your kids will be desperate to go, and deep down, you know that you want to visit too.
With attractions based around Toy Story, Star Wars, Pirates of the Caribbean, and many more besides – take a look here – you are guaranteed to have a wonderful time.
Still, with so much to do and so little time to get around everything, you will want to maximize your time at the park. While not as big as Disneyworld in Orlando, you still need to plan ahead if you want to make the most of your time here.
Here are a few useful suggestions.
Buy your tickets online
You could be queuing for more than an hour on a busy day at Disneyland, even when you turn up extra early to get into the park. However, if you buy your tickets online, you can skip the queues and sing ‘heigh-ho heigh-ho, it’s off to Disneyland we go’ when passing the long line of people waiting desperately to gain entrance.
Book a hotel on-site if you can (or nearby if you can’t)
While a little on the pricey side (you’re looking at around $400 on average), you will have all the benefits of a luxury hotel and spa experience if you stay on-site, and you will also have early access to some of Disneyland’s best rides. If you can’t stay on-site, try and stay at a hotel close by. This way, you won’t have to pay for parking (you can take the free shuttle bus), and you can still get to Disneyland early in the day.
Search Disneyland Hotels here
Download the Disneyland mobile app
This is something you really need to do, as you will have the ability to plan your day through the maps and information provided. This way, you are less likely to waste time getting lost, and you won’t miss out on something your family is desperate to see. Furthermore, you won’t have to spend time looking for your park tickets on arrival (or run the risk of losing them), as there is a barcode on the app that can be used for admission.
Use the FASTPASS System
Disneyland’s FASTPASS system is a great way to beat the crowds to the best attractions, and you can access it from the Disneyland app on your phone. Be warned that passes are often on a first-come, first-served basis, so be sure to grab yours early. You can learn more about the system in the previous link.
Skip the food queues
Skip the dining lines and use the Mobile Order Service to get your food faster. Simply order your food, and you will get a notification on your phone when it is ready to pick up. Alternatively, bring a packed lunch with you, as you can then eat on the go without worrying about food prices. Either way, you will be able to spend more time having fun and less time in the dreaded queues.
So, there we have it. Maximize your time in the park with our tips, and have the best experience possible. Let us know if you have any other time-saving tips from this or any of the other Disney theme parks.