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The Ultimate Packing List for Disney World

So you’ve booked a Disney vacation, secured your dining reservations, and snagged some theme park reservations. Now it’s time to decide what to pack for Disney World!

Don’t just throw some clothes in a suitcase and call it a day. That can definitely lead to regret or misery (not to be negative, but it’s kind of true) once you’re there.

You don’t want to get stuck at Disney Springs wasting your souvenir money on something you forgot at home or buying a new pair of shoes because the ones you packed are leaving blisters all over your feet.

Keep reading for my tips on what to pack for Walt Disney World, as well as what to wear.

To top it all off, you can download a free printable packing list for Disney World if you sign up for my email list later in the post. Happy packing!

Disney World packing list essentials

I've been to Disney World at all times of the year, so I've got a good idea on what to pack - especially when it comes to your park bag.

Keep reading for the top items to add to your packing list for Disney World.

What NOT to put on your packing list for Disney World

What not to pack for a day at Disney World is just as important as what you do pack. Here are a few tips on what to leave at home and why.

A big, bulky, sweaty backpack

Keep your park bag light and breathable. A heavy bag will weigh you down and make you sweat even more than the scorching Florida sun. No one wants that.

A small backpack, nylon bag, or small purse will work just fine as a bag. Check out the section above on what to pack for Disney World for a few good park bag options.

If you’re at the parks with children and need things like diapers, a change of clothes, etc, try to pair down your bag as much as possible.

And if you can get away with a stroller, stash it underneath or ensure it’s light enough to tie onto the handles so you don’t have to carry it on your shoulder or back.

High heels

Another guaranteed way to make yourself miserable at the parks is wearing heels or heeled sandals.

If you have a fancy event or dinner planned, feel free to stash them in your luggage. But leave ’em at the hotel for days at the park. Your feet will thank you.

Select camera equipment

Graphic showing a traditional camera tripod with an X over it and a compact GorillaPod mini tripod with a check mark above it.

Be picky about the camera equipment you bring with you on your trip, as well as to the parks.

99.9% of you will be just fine with a smartphone as a camera, especially with the amazing photography features built into phones these days.

If you want to bring something more into the park, leave the professional equipment out of your park bag. Tripods are not allowed in the parks and you might not be allowed in with extensive professional lenses, either.

Small, handheld stabilizers, like GorillaPods, are allowed. I’ve had no problem bringing mine into the park.

GoPro, mirrorless, and dSLR cameras are also allowed in, but I only recommend taking them into the parks if you truly intend to use them. Otherwise you’ll be stuck lugging around expensive equipment that could easily get damaged.

What to wear to Disney World

Now for the clothes. Keep reading for my tips on what to wear to Disney World in different seasons, how to keep cool, and how to avoid wrecking your feet!

Always check the weather

My absolute top tip to remember when it comes to deciding what to wear to Disney World is to be aware of the weather and pack accordingly.

Florida isn’t warm and sunny every single day. There are definitely cold snaps and rainy days to prepare for.

When you’re packing, check the weather as close to your trip as possible and adjust what’s in your suitcase accordingly.

In general, aim for loose layers and light colors in the Summer and Fall months. Think shorts, casual dresses, and loose pants.

Avoid tight pants as they can lead to the dreaded “Disney Rash,” aka golfer’s rash, as it’ll be harder for your blood to circulate – especially if the hot and humid weather causes you to swell up a bit.

As for tops, aim for a loose layers like t-shirts and tank tops. Of course, if a basic form-fitting layer is usually your thing, you’ll probably do just fine with a form-fitting top layer.

In the Winter and Spring, the weather can be a bit more erratic. You might have “shorts and t-shirt” weather one day and “jeans and a light jacket” the next day.

Layering will be key to dressing comfortably for the parks. For example, you might want to pack a pair of pants and 1-2 jackets or sweatshirts in case there’s an unexpected cold snap.

Some places have a dress code

Aside from the weather, check your dining and show reservations to see if there is a dress code to follow.

Some places won’t allow jeans, for example, so you’ll want to make sure you have appropriate clothing for these activities.

Don’t forget comfy walking shoes

Lastly, pack shoes that you can walk miles and miles in, due to all the walking you’re going to do.

No, seriously. If you haven’t been to Walt Disney World resort before, you might not realize ahead of time how much you’ll end up walking in a day.

By packing the right shoes, you’ll ensure your day isn’t ruined by blisters or sore, sweaty, hot feet.

Most people swear by wearing athletic sneakers for the parks. They provide great support for your entire body and will ensure you aren’t limping at the end of the day.

For me, that’s not the case, unless the temps are cooler. My feet sweat way too much in the hot weather, so I prefer to wear sandals to the parks.

Birkenstock sandals are my go-to, as the cork bed sole forms a custom fit that best supports my feet. If it’s a cooler day, I like Vans ComfyCush sneakers or Vans slip-ons.

Aside from walking shoes, be sure to throw in a pair of flip flops or sandals that are easy to slide on and off for the pool area.

What else is on your packing list for Disney World?

Before you go, be sure to sign up for my e-mail newsletter and get my free printable Disney World packing list to help keep you organized while packing for your vacation to the most magical place on Earth.

My Disney packing list truly helps make packing for Disney World a breeze!

Get your FREE printable packing list

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About the author

Photo of Meg Frost on Buzz Lightyear: Space Ranger Blast at Disney World's Magic Kingdom.
Photo by Meg Frost, All rights reserved.

Meg Frost is the creator of The Park Pixie, where she covers Disney World, Disney+, and Disney fandom.

She holds an M.A. in Journalism from Northeastern University and B.S. in Communication & American Studies from University of Miami in Florida.

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This post was originally published on May 4, 2021. It was last updated October 14, 2023.

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