Tips on Making Your Trip to Disney Easy

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Disneyland is one of the top attractions in town for families. After all, there is a lot to do in the Magic Kingdom and it is always a place that inspires happiness. However, getting to Disney can be stressful if it is your first time visiting. So here are our helpful tips to make your first trip to Disneyland easy and fun.

 

How to Reserve a Date and Purchase Your Ticket

Photo source: CGTN

Purchasing Single Entry Ticket

You can easily purchase your single entry ticket in three places: Disney APP, Disney Official WeChat and via their website. All three are easily connected to AlipayWeChat for payment.

Via App:

Via WeChat: 

Purchasing single-visit passes online via the official Disney Shanghai Resort is very straightforward and easy.

Purchasing & Entering with Annual Pass

If you purchased your annual pass and want to go to the theme park. You need to reserve your spot in advance on the App. If you did not claim your physical pass and want to make reservations for a park trip, you need to input the order number in place of the card number, which you got as either an email or a text message upon purchase. 

How to Collect your ticket:

This can be done at the theme park main entry point. For people who purchased an annual pass, once you get past security, on the far right side you will see a ticket booth. You can line up here to collect your ticket.

Alternatively, you can collect your ticket from the hotel concierge if you purchased an annual ticket with a hotel stay.

Tip 1: Bind Your Annual Pass to the Official WeChat Account. WeChat is where you can get the coupons for food, snack and shopping coupons!

Once you collect the physical card, you will need to bind your annual pass to the WeChat official account to enjoy the discount benefits. Better do it while you are at the ticket office so you have someone to help you as the main menu is in Chinese. WeChat Official account for Disney will be: ShangHaiDisneyResort

How to Use Your Disney Coupons (Annual Card Holder)

Carry your Annual Pass in a visible spot, wear a pass holder if you have to. When you use the coupons from the WeChat (Disney App does not offer coupon redemption), you also need to show your pass for the discount. This is also why, without a stroller and having a toddler tugging at your shirt while you are holding a full tray of food, could be tricky.

Coupons Via WeChat only:

Vouchers Via WeChat only:

Entering the Park & Security

There are two checkpoints when you enter the theme park. First, you have a security check, which ensures you are not bringing anything illegal. After you pass security, on the far right side is the ticket checkpoint where you can go to claim your day pass or your annual pass.

Tip 2: If you stay at the hotel, you can enter via DisneyTown (entrance between Wolfgang Puck and Crystal Jade). This is the VIP entrance for hotel guests, Early Access ticket holders (subject to availability) and Premier Access Pass holders.

 

Must bring: Government-issued ID, physical form of the ticket (single entry or annual card).

Park Fun 

If you have a child who is under 4-years old, you may find the following tips helpful. Just so you are prepared for your trip.

Tip 3: Bring Your Own Stroller. If you have it, bring it as the stroller service is only available for use in the park. From the main park entrance to anywhere you need to exit is a good 15-20min walk. 

 

 photo source: http://www.honorablerat.com/

You can rent one for RMB 90 per day, however, this is subject to same-day availability and only on a first-come-first-serve basis. A rental kiosk is located at the far left of the entrance, once inside the park.

Now, if you are using the stroller, exercise normal street smarts. First, no strollers allowed in the sit-down restaurants (unless your kid is asleep). Second, you cannot use the stroller while you wait in line for rides. Lastly, strollers are not permitted in some areas of the light show. Do not leave valuables in your stroller.

Tip 4: Head to Disneytown for Kid Friendly Restaurants

Food that can be somewhat suitable for a three-year-old at Pinocchio Village Kitchen (in Fantasyland) would be their pizza and noodles (the braised red beef noodles carry a little spice, so you would need to rinse it in water before serving).

If you head up to Tangled Tree Tavern, you can get chicken fingers and French fries. Their Shanghainese Noodles is light and their kid’s menu is quite appetizing.

Mickey & Pals Market Cafe on Mickey Avenue provides a pasta option that looks like it’s out of the movie. “Lady and the Tramp”.

Fancier spots such as Royal Banquet Hall allow a better selection of food for a child (and certainly more nutritious). Plus, dining with characters is a great way to light up the child’s imagination. Although a bit far from Disneyland theme park, Lumiere’s kitchen is a wonderful alternative and it offers a close experience with Mickey, Minnie, Pluto and Goofy.

Lumiere’s kitchen is certainly a great spot for dining, especially if you stay at the Shanghai Disney Resort hotel and choose to have breakfast here. You get a photo with Mickey and Minnie, plus the characters dance and interact with the guests.

However, do bring your own children’s utensils with you. Not all restaurants offer children’s cutlery or plates.

For parents with children that need diaper changes, the bathrooms are very well equipped with pull-down nappy tables in Family Restrooms.

However, we enjoyed the children’s menu at Cheesecake Factory (each kid can only order one item from the kid’s menu). Xinwang also offers soupy noodles if your kid fancies it. Blue Frog is developing their children’s menu (as of our visit in April, it didn’t exist). Parents can grab fancy bread snacks from BreadTalk if they need to.

Tip 5: Pay for Premier Access Pass. Lines can be long for the park rides, so try and get a fast pass if you can to help minimize the wait.  Single fast passes are great especially if you are with a kid as they may be sleeping.

 

Premier Access Pass:

  • You can buy a pack, which includes 3-6 rides (minimizes wait time for certain rides)
  • Singles: Individual Rides (which minimizes the wait time on certain rides)

Purchase Via App:

Concierge Pass:

  • This will give you access to 8 rides, VIP seating for the Fantasy Festival as well as, reserved viewing spot for the nighttime fireworks show
Tip 6: Toddler-Friendly Rides. Research the rides in advance according to your child’s height, then plan your ride-going strategy.

 

Rides that are excellent for younger toddlers would be (any height)

  • Pirates of the Caribbean: Battle for the Sunken Treasure
  • Dumbo the Flying Elephant
  • Carousel
  • Hunny Pot Spin
  • The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh
  • Peter Pan’s Flight
  • “Once Upon a Time” Adventure
  • Selfie Spot (scattered throughout Disneyland at designated spots)
  • Slinky Dog Spin
  • Woody’s Round-Up

Just be sure if you go on these rides, certain rules may apply such as, the child cannot sit on your lap and will need to sit between two adults.

Tip 7: Photopass. Download the app to your mobile device before going to the park. Once you receive your ticket, scan the QR code on the ticket.

You can easily locate the photo pass photographers at the key locations. Or if you are desperate to chase a photographer down, you can find out where the photographers are on the Disney App

Quick Checklist:

  1. Download Photopass App
  2. Follow ShangHAIDisneyResort WeChat
  3. Download Disney App
  4. Bring child cutlery and plates.

Does going to Disney sound like a severe case of mobile phone multitasking? Yes. But don’t worry if your phone runs out of batteries. There are plenty of Energy Monster portable mobile phone chargers easily available.

Note: At the time of writing, due to the child’s age we stayed mainly in Fantasyland, Toy Story Land, Gardens of Imagination, Treasure Cove and Disneytown. This article was written over three trips to Disneyland.