Here are our 10 best tips for visiting Disneyland Paris…
1 – Visit for a minimum of 3 nights. If you want to do as many rides & attractions as you can, you really need to stay for at least 3 nights. Disneyland Park can be done in a day, if you arrive early and stay until park closing, and if it’s not too busy. But it’s best done over two days, especially during peak times when queues are longer. Walt Disney Studios can be done in one day. There may be attractions that you want to repeat, or that you missed first time round. Guests may also want to visit the nearby outlet village for a bit of shopping. If you want to visit Paris for the day, stay in a cheaper hotel rather than wasting money on a Disney hotel when you won’t be there all day.
2 – Visit during off-peak season. That is not during school holidays. Weekends are also usually much busier, regardless of season, due to locals visiting.The trade off here is that parks close earlier during off-peak season, although you’ll spend so much less time waiting in line that you’ll get more done.
3 – Don’t pay full price! There are offers on pretty much all year round, especially if you book in advance. Keep an eye on our DLP offers page where we post the lastest offers as soon as they’re released. If there’s not an offer on right now, wait a week or two and one might be released. Examples include 40-50% off Disney hotel stays, kids go free, and free dining.
4 – Have a rough idea what you want to do before arriving. Use MagicalKingdoms.com to help plan your trip in advance. If visiting at a busy time, it’s advisable to book sit-down restaurants in advance (see this article for more dining tips). Know which attractions are where and which you want to ride first, that way you’re not wasting time when you get to the park trying to decide what to do. If you’re staying at a Disney hotel you can pick up a copy of the park guide at the front desk. That lists all showtimes for each day. Some shows are only presented a limited number of times a day, so plan the other attractions you want to visit around those showtimes and parade times.
5 – Head for the most popular attractions as soon as you arrive at the park in the morning. At Disneyland Park these are Big Thunder Mountain, Space Mountain, and if you have small kids, the Fantasyland attractions. Most popular at Walt Disney Studios are Crush’s Coaster and Twilight Zone Tower of Terror.
6 – Make use of FASTPASS. FASTPASS is a free service that allows guests to get a ticket to return to an attraction at a specified time and skip the regular queue, drastically reducing wait time. Grab FASTPASS tickets for the rides you want to do early on in the day, then go off and enjoy other attractions while waiting for your FASTPASS return time to come around.
7 – Skip the Parades! Unless you’re really bothered about seeing the afternoon or nighttime parade, use the time to visit the more popular attractions, which will have much shorter queues during parades.
8 – Dine off-peak. Counter service lines can get crazy long between 12-2pm, and table service restaurants in Disney Village get huge lines from around 6-7pm onwards. Eat outside of these times and you’ll save time. (See this article for more dining tips.)
9 – Use Extra Magic Hours. Disney hotel guests can enter the parks early on selected days, giving them up to two hours head start to experience the attractions before everyone else arrives.
10 – Go with the flow! A very common complaint from guests who’ve visited, and something I’ve experienced myself, is the apparent disregard many guests have for waiting their turn. Whether it’s waiting for an attraction, in line for food, or meeting characters, people seem to completely ignore the fact that there’s a queue or other people who have been waiting there first. Be aware of this and try not to let it spoil your fun! Block the way if you can, smile and politely inform the offender that you were waiting here first, or point to the end of the line if they don’t understand English.