Just imagine you finally made it! You can see the entrance to the Magic Kingdom but suddenly you are getting run over by the stampede of people just let off the monorail. Wait, what? That’s not how your vacation is supposed to go! And that memory won’t be yours if you follow these tips. As a Disney local for years now I have learned the list of mistakes to avoid when entering Disney World parks.
We get that Disney park time is limited and something you want to get the most out of. Avoiding lines is key to this and of course, entering the park as smoothly as possible goes hand in hand with this.
The Biggest Park Entrance Tip
Whatever you do, do not follow crowds. When you arrive don’t just jump in line, first examine every line available. I find most times that the lines all the way to the left tend to be shorter. Remember the masses do not always know where they are going, especially at Disney World. Most of the people you see are not locals and instead are unfamiliar and most likely don’t know where they are going.
Both Sides are Open for Bag Check
Most guests don’t realize that the security guards check bags on both the left and right side of the table. So if you see one side of the table empty, don’t be afraid to walk up with your bag on the other side. From time to time security will shout out this rule so don’t feel bad if you feel like you are cutting people.
Of course, the fastest way to get through security at any Disney park is to skip bringing a bag. On some occasions, I have challenged myself and brought just what I could fit in my pockets and I promise it is possible.
Secret Animal Kingdom Entrance
The Rainforest Cafe to the left of Animal Kingdom’s entrance actually has a small gate to the park. After you get through bag check, just enter Rainforest Cafe and walk through the gift shop to the back entrance. Exit out those doors and head to turnstiles right into the Animal Kingdom.
Always Be Prepared
When you are waiting in line for security be sure to unzip those bags and have them ready. This means EVERY zipper is open along with the zipper items inside your bags. Once you are through security you will need those tickets so be sure to have those on hand or have your MagicBand on!
Avoid Large Bags
Keep your eyes peeled, those large bags take extra long to search in the security line. People like me who often enter the park with a giant camera bag need to have all the pockets checked. They also make me take the cameras out and hold them separate. I have noticed in the last year they have been much more thorough in checking bags. If you can, don’t get behind these people or be one yourself, since this will add to your wait! This also goes for strollers they also have to be fully checked.
What tips do you use to get into the park quicker? Have you ever encountered a mess at the entrance and been stuck in a crazy long line? Share your experiences in the comments below.
Bonus Tip: If you see an entrance labeled “Cast Member”, you can still enter. Cast Members can only use this to enter. Good news is it works for guests as well and most often is a short line.
I have been visiting the parks annually since my parents first brought me at just a year old. Recently I was able to fulfill my life long dream of being a Florida local and moved from the wintery Northeast to the sunshine and fun of central Florida. Now I am hoping to share my Disney knowledge with you so you can have the best vacation possible!