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Monday, January 30, 2023

Disney in a Day, Tips and tricks to get the most out of a day trip to Orlando parks

Orlando's Walt Disney World is the most frequented resort destination in the world, but Floridians often take it for granted.

With four distinct theme parks, it can be quite overwhelming for anybody who isn't taking a weeklong vacation, much less a college student on a budget who can't sacrifice more than a weekend for a trip to Disney World.

So what's the solution?

Visit all four parks in one day.

With a one-day Park Hopper pass at less than $100 for Florida residents, you can gain access to the Magic Kingdom, Epcot, Disney's Hollywood Studios and Disney's Animal Kingdom Park for a day of unadulterated longing to be a 7-year-old.

Adult-sized Goofy hats. Enough said.

Of course, you'll have to be mature enough to make a strategy and plan your every move to make the most of your day. You'll also need a lot more than just $100 for souvenirs.

Again, Goofy hats.

To get on 22 different rides recently, I used the following tips for an unusually busy mid-February trip to the parks in Orlando.

Find a time of year that suits you.

Aim for a time when you won't have to feel embarrassed waiting in line for the Dumbo The Flying Elephant ride among a sea of children under 10 years old.

Christmas, Spring Break and summer are the busiest times of year for the park.

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The best bet is to go in mid-January, mid-February, April or October.

Buy your park ticket in advance

Leave all the tourists in the dust while they wait for their tickets at the turnstiles.

You'll save valuable ride time while the dude in sandals and dress socks sweats it out in line.

Early to rise

While this might scare some of you away, the goal is to get up and start at the park with the earliest opening time, which is usually Animal Kingdom.

Just envision the opening scene of "The Lion King." Better yet, download that song and blast it in the morning. If that doesn't get you out of bed, you're probably dead.

End the day with the park that closes the latest, which is usually Magic Kingdom. It also has the best fireworks.

Bring the right gear

Wear comfortable shoes. Please don't be one of those people who wears stilettos to Disney World.

Not only are you embarrassing yourself, but you also make our feet hurt just looking at you.

And, yeah, I'm addressing you too, guys. Especially you.

Also, have a map handy to know where you'll be going. It'll be especially helpful if your party has decided in advance which rides and attractions you'll be seeing and which you're willing to skip.

This is also helpful if you need to know where else you can spend your too much of your money.

Lines? Pssh, whatever

In order to save time and make the poor saps waiting in the regular line jealous, you'll need to milk Disney's FASTPASS system, especially for rides like Epcot's "Soarin'" and Hollywood Studios' "Rock 'n' Roller Coaster," which often accumulate 90-minute-plus wait times.

That's the longest anyone has waited for anything Aerosmith-related. Ever.

You've got the cherish it

This is the most important tip: have fun!

If you run around without a minute to breathe or soak in the atmosphere, the trip will become too much of a chore, kind of like the time you wanted to impress everyone else and stayed up all night reading that Harry Potter book as fast as you could. Lame.

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