A few weeks ago, we chatted about the perfect park bag, and while some of you don’t take a thing into the parks that won’t fit into your pockets, I thought we ought to discuss what the rest of you are carrying around in those sacks. Obviously we’re all toting an ID, ticket media and some form of payment (cash or plastic), but here are seven more must-haves in our day bag.
While you definitely want to slather on the sunscreen in the morning before you venture out into the sun, I suggest you throw the bottle into your bag for touch-ups throughout the day. Sunscreen will fade as the day goes by because of sweat, water rides, pool play or just the passage of time. Protect yourself from the brutal afternoon sun by taking a few minutes to reapply mid-day.
Even without little ones in tow, a pack of baby wipes or anti-bacterial wipes can prove invaluable. I may or may not have had someone’s soda explode on me during a parade, and a quick swipe with a couple of cloths can keep one from having a sticky afternoon. They’re also super handy for giving a table a quick wipe-down if its former occupants were messy, or if your little one tries to eat his Mickey bar with his eyebrows (which also may or may not have happened in our crew).
If you’re a gum chewer, you’ve got to bring it with you. It isn’t sold in any of the Disney shops, so if you don’t bring it, you won’t get it.
Get Park Wise: There’s a reason gum isn’t sold, so if you bring it in, please dispose of it correctly (i.e., in the waste bin!!). Your fellow park-goers and the soles of their shoes thank you.
4. First Aid Kit
Ok, this one’s kinda cheating because it actually contains multiple items, but I definitely recommend stashing a few medical supplies with the rest of your park gear. We carry a small cosmetic bag with bandages, ointment, pain reliever, antacids, tweezers, moleskin and a small pair of scissors. Pretty much covers any minor incidents we may have along the way. If anything more serious occurs, there is a first aid station in each of the parks.
This is something I keep with me at all times no matter where I am, but it can come in handy at the parks. When the mouseketeers were younger, I could quickly hand over my pocket notepad and a pen, and they’d be perfectly content in a slow-moving line (like that sneaky Jungle Cruise queue) or while waiting for our entree. It’s also nice to jot down the name of a cast member who went above and beyond so you’re sure to remember his name once you get to guest relations or fire off that email. For you scrapbookers, writers or bloggers, it’s also nice to sit and do a little journaling while something is fresh on your mind. I know I’ve tried to recap my day later that night or even weeks later, and it’s just never as good as when I have something I wrote in the moment.
6. Phone Charger
With all of the apps geared toward aiding you in your park touring, texting your group while trying to find each other, checking in on Facebook so all your friends at home know exactly what you’re doing at that very second, smart phone batteries can drain by mid-day. Invest in a portable charger (I got a great one on a local deal site for under $30), or even bring your wall charger along. While Disney queues and common places always seem to have an outlet somewhere, dedicated charging stations are available, too! At the moment, the only permanent station is found at Magic Kingdom near the Tangled restrooms, but my guess is that more are on the way.
Whether you have a stash of snack crackers in your resort room or you stop in one of the shops, throw a little something in your bag for later. When you start getting cranky, your stomach starts growling louder than the Beast during the show or that 20-minute posted wait ends up being closer to 40, a quick nosh can save the day.
What about you? What do you put in your Disney Parks bag?