There’s probably a bunch of prep you’ll do before you book your Disneyland trip. Are there cool seasonal events going on? What’s the hotel situation like? Blockout dates?
All of the above are good things to take into account for sure, but there are a few more sneaky things you might take for granted and might get in the way of a good time (although like...you can always drown your sorrows in churros or some good old fashioned Disneyland retail therapy).
Luckily, all of these pesky things that could interfere with your picture perfect Disneyland trip are super easy to check in advance. So let’s dive in.
When you first go through the security checkpoints in the park, you’ll see a sign listing all the attraction closures for the day. Which can be a total bummer if some of the things listed on the sign are what you come to the park for.
All the attractions at the parks cycle through maintenance closures at some point while some attractions will close for holiday overlays (Small World Holiday, Haunted Mansion Holiday), and then close again to reset.
You can always check any closures on the calendar section of the Disneyland website pretty far in advance, along with a ton of other awesome park info for the specific days of your trip. This site also has a great easy guide to check up on closures as well.
Park Operating Hours
This is something I’ve definitely taken for granted in the past.
If you’re used to an 8am-12am park day, it can come as a shock to learn you get a shorter day, but the park hours change throughout the year. So while a 8am-12am day is standard in the summer, you could be looking at a 10am-8pm park day during an off-time of the year, which drastically cuts down on park time.
Checking the Disneyland calendar is definitely something to add to your pre-booking checklist to make sure you’re getting the most bang for your buck, and there aren’t any super-non-magical surprises. (Keep in mind the park times are subject to change.)
Are the reservations you want available?
If you have a tried and true tradition like dinner at the Blue Bayou, or garlic fries at Cafe Orleans, it’s worth it to call in and make your reservations as soon as you possibly can. You can book reservations up to 60 days in advance.
Since it’s so easy, I recommend first checking the reservations section of the Disneyland Website to check availability and book your reservation. However, if the website doesn’t list any available reservations for your trip, try calling Disney Dining (714)781-3463 to speak to a human. They’re usually pretty helpful and might be able to find something the website can’t.
And, if all else fails, you can always try going to your desired restaurant at the very beginning of the day and getting on a standby list in case of cancellations.