By the co-author of The easy Guide to Your Walt Disney World Visit 2017, from the best-reviewed Disney World guidebook series ever. Paperback available on Amazon here. Kindle version available on Amazon here. PDF version available on Gumroad here.



yourfirstvisit.net—Disney World Instructions for the First-Time Visitor



To-Do List Seven Night FastPass+ Lower Crowd Itinerary, Saturday Arrival



By Dave Shute

This To-Do List is for the Seven Night variant of the FastPass+ Lower Crowd Itinerary, with a Saturday arrival.  For To-Do-Lists for other itineraries, see this.

FastPass+ Lower Crowd 7 Night Itinerary Saturday Arrival v2 from yourfirstvisit.net

A. MORE THAN 180 DAYS BEFORE YOUR PLANNED ARRIVAL DATE

(Note that a good travel agent, such as Destinations in Florida, can do almost all of this for you, for free. If you use Destinations in Florida as you travel agent through a link for this site–like this one–then they share a bit of the pixie dust they get from Disney with me.)

1. Confirm your budget, planned dates, intended hotel, kids’ development and heights, and your transportation choice and its availability for your planned dates.

2. Make your plane reservations, if flying. Make any other needed transportation arrangements.

3. Create your My Disney Experience account here and add your family members to it

4. Set up your hotel and tickets. Call 407-939-7675 (preferred, because this allows you to tell the reservationist which building at your resort you wish to be in), or click here to use Disney’s online system.  (Note: if your dates are later than what the online system permits, see this.)

  • If you are following my itinerary, you want the hotel you’ve picked for seven nights, eight day, no hopper, no “water parks and more” tickets, the Dining Plan, and Disney’s Magical Express
  • Itineraries other than mine will have different requirements here

B. 181 DAYS BEFORE YOUR ARRIVAL DATE

San Angel Inn at Epcot from yourfirstvisit.netDecide whether on Sunday night you’ll be dining at Akershus or the San Angel Inn. Akershus is a princess meal–you’ll have another princess meal at Cinderella’s Royal Table on Thursday.  If you really like princesses, do Akershus; otherwise, San Angel Inn is the better choice.

Login to your MyDisneyExperience.com account, click the “Things to Do” tab at top right, under Dining hit “Make Reservations,” and practice trying to reserve restaurants (hint: use the search box at the upper right).

This may well drive you crazy, but the site works better than it used to…and is likely the only way you can get your Cindy reservations done! (as the site opens up a new reservable day at 6a, whereas the phone reservation line opens at 7a).

Collect your restaurant reservations together. You will want to do them online in order of hardest to reserve first. This is how they are listed below.

C. EXACTLY 6am EST, EXACTLY 180 DAYS BEFORE YOUR ARRIVAL DATE

(For an 180 day calendar, see this).

Be on the restaurant website by at least 5:50am EST, and have your Cindy reservation all set up on the page. Keep refreshing, as you will be let in as soon as Disney’s system decides it is 6a.

Make as many of the following as you have patience for, in the exact order listed:

  • Cinderella’s Royal Table Lunch (dining plan, two credits): Friday at 11a or later if you can; earlier than 11 only if your sole option…
  • Hoop-Dee-Doo Revue (dining plan, two credits): Friday 6.15p show. The later time will keep you up later than you need to be, OK if all you can get. Avoid the earlier time–it’ll cut into your park time too much
  • Chef Mickey’s (dining plan, one credit) Wednesday 11a.  Later is OK, but not a whole lot earlier–no earlier than 10.30a
  • Crystal Palace (dining plan): First Saturday 6p if you can; earlier OK, but not later
  • Akershus Banquet or San Angel Inn (dining plan): Thursday 7p.  No later, but earlier is OK.

For those you don’t make online, make them by calling call (407) WDW-DINE (939-3463)

D. 60 DAYS BEFORE YOUR ARRIVAL DATE

Liking the Name on This MagicBand1. Go to your MyDisneyExperience account as early as shortly after midnight and set up the following FastPass+

  • First Saturday at the Magic Kingdom: your goal on this arrival evening is to see the evening spectacles at the Magic Kingdom. Get a FastPass+ for the Main Street Electrical Parade (MSEP). Disney requires you to book three FastPass+, so book two others even if you aren’t sure you will arrive at the park in time to use them—target two from among Splash Mountain, Seven Dwarfs Mine Train and Space Mountain. (If you can’t arrive in time for these, they are also on the schedule for later in the week.) Note that MSEP may not be available until close to your trip. If so, book something else now, and change to MSEP if/when it becomes available.
  • Sunday at Disney’s Hollywood Studios: Tier One: Toy Story Midway Mania 1.30-2.30p. Tier Two: Voyage of the Little Mermaid (9.30-10.30a) and the Frozen Sing-Along (noon-1p). (At park open, head straight to Rock ‘N’ Roller Coaster.)
  • Monday at Epcot: Tier One: Soarin 10.30-11.30a. Tier Two: Turtle Talk with Crush 12.30p-1.30p and a third ride after. (At park open, head for Test Track.)
  • Tuesday at the Animal Kingdom: Kilimanjaro Safaris, Kali River Rapids, and Festival of the Lion King (if open by your dates—Finding Nemo if not). Set all for mid-late afternoon, with Kali River Rapids last. (At park open, head for Expedition Everest.)
  • Wednesday at the Magic Kingdom: Space Mountain, Buzz Lightyear, and Jungle Cruise. Set Space Mountain for 12-1p, Buzz Lightyear for 1-2p, and Jungle Cruise for 3.30-4.30p
  • Thursday afternoon and evening at Epcot: Tier One: Illuminations. Tier Two: Spaceship Earth 4.30-5.30p and Mission: Space 5.30-6.30p. Note that the Illuminations FastPass+ may not be available until closer to your arrival date—if not available, make Test Track your Tier One instead, and try to change it to Illuminations later.
  • Friday at the Magic Kingdom: Seven Dwarfs Mine Train, Enchanted Tales with Belle, and the Haunted Mansion. Target Seven Dwarfs for 1-2p, Belle for 2-3p, and the Haunted Mansion for 3.30-4.30p. (At park open, head to Peter Pan.)
  • Second Saturday morning at the Magic Kingdom: Splash Mountain, Pirates of the Caribbean, and a third. Set Pirates for 10-11a, and Splash for 11-12.  (At park open, head for Big Thunder Mountain.)

2. Do online check in, requesting as you do special location points

3. Customize your MagicBands

E. NOTES ON PACKING ETC. BEFORE YOU LEAVE

1. Bring your MagicBands in your carry-ons

2. If you use Disney’s Magical Express, you do not need to collect your bags at the Orlando airport unless you arrive late in the evening/at night or are an international traveler. Disney will get them for you and, eventually, deliver them directly to your room. Your bags may arrive hours after you do; so, depending on the weather forecasts, have a carry-on with an appropriate change of clothes for Orlando weather on Saturday, as you will almost certainly go to the Magic Kingdom on Saturday before your checked bags arrive.

3. Follow the instructions in the Magical Express packet you will receive in the mail regarding both tagging your bags pre-departure, and where to go at the Orlando airport to find your transport to your resort.

4. Bring a copy of your room reservation, confirmation numbers and any tickets for special events you may have received in the mail.

5. Pack breakfast utensils, as they are not always available in the gift shop: bowls, spoons, napkins

6. When you arrive at the hotel, look for the special “On-line Check-in” line, and get into it.

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14 comments

1 Michelle { 01.24.14 at 11:50 am }

Hi Dave –

We are Arriving Next Week 2/1-2/8. I am starting to get really nervous about having each day planned.
I do have all my meals and park days planned, and did my FP+ for each day. I wasn’t planning on “planning out” what ride i go to at what time, outside of the FP+ reservations. Do i really need to have a set plan for every minute of the day? I see people asking how long it takes to walk from one ride to another – seems like OVERKILL and taking the fun out of it to me! My kids are little so i of course want stuff planned but need to take a slow pace too – I have been once 15 years ago and my husband has never been.

2 Dave { 01.24.14 at 2:10 pm }

Michelle, given how low the crowds will be your dates, you are about done..you should plan beyond what you have already done your first hour in the parks–since the time right after opening is the lowest crowd part of the day, you want to hit high priorities then that you haven’t got FP+ for…

3 Stephanie { 04.01.14 at 9:02 pm }

Just talked to Destinations in FL and our picked dates were full, so looks like we will arrive and go Tues to Tues to get AofA still. Can you remind me how you recommend to use the itinerary? do we just pretend Tues is Sat? I just need to figure this out before I make my ADR’s!

4 Dave { 04.02.14 at 8:25 am }

Stephanie, the itinerary matches daily patterns, so “Tuesday” is Tuesday, not “Day 4.” Give me your dates and the ages of the kids and I’ll help!

5 Stephanie { 04.02.14 at 9:18 am }

Oct 14-21, 2014. Girl 8yrs, boy almost 6. We will be adding not so spooky Halloween party as well. Thank you for the guidance!

6 Dave { 04.03.14 at 7:17 am }

Stephanie, with the different days, the party, and some weirdness in Disney’s calendar that week requiring flipping Thursday and Tuesday in the itineraries anyway, you’d probably be best off starting from scratch…

7 Stephanie { 04.03.14 at 10:04 pm }

Wait, no, not scratch!! Those darn little mermaid rooms causing me to change my dates! I have until 4/17 for my dinner reservations, so I need to decide what parks on what days. I still plan to do the same meals in your 7 day, I guess I will head to your October post and look up the weirdness in the calendar you speak of. Hmmmmm.

8 Dave { 04.04.14 at 2:15 pm }

K, Stephanie. Once you set a basic plan put it up here. You may also find this really helpful: http://www.easywdw.com/category/calendar/10-october-2014-crowd-calendar/

9 Stephanie { 04.07.14 at 1:53 pm }

Very helpful! This is what I have planned out and my ADRs, let me know if you have any rec. You have been so helpful for this trip for me, and I will be buying your book for our trip as well, I am sold! Since Josh’s site really helped me on my days and I could fit everything in from your 7 day itinerary. My only thing that I believe I left out was Fantasmic, as the day for HS they do not have it. I fit in the Halloween party, and that was more important for my Family. Kids 5&8
Tues 14th Arrive: Epcot, Akerhous, Illuminations
Wed 15th: Magic Kingdom, Crystal Palace, Wishes/parade
Thurs 16th: Hollywood Studios
Fri 17th: Magic Kingdom, Chef Mickey’s, Not so Scary Halloween Party
Sat 18th: Animal Kingdom, parade
Sun 19th: Magic Kingdom, Cinderella’s royal Table, Hoop Dee Doo, afternoon parade
***Will Hoop still be going on if MK closes at 7pm for Halloween party? since at Wilderness I am hoping so!
Monday: Epcot
Tuesday: Family choice for 3 hours in the AM before we head to the port.

Any thoughts?? I again thank you so much, can’t wait.

10 Dave { 04.08.14 at 8:29 am }

This looks great! And yes, Hoop will still be on!

11 Jason { 06.30.14 at 12:21 pm }

Using this itinerary. which FP+ recommendation for the Magic Kingdom would you give up to add one for Anna/Elsa? or should we try to get Anna/Elsa on the first Saturday?

12 Dave { 07.01.14 at 8:48 am }

Jason–how old are the kids?

13 Jason { 07.01.14 at 10:35 am }

will be 6 and 5 when we go next spring

14 Dave { 07.02.14 at 3:03 pm }

Jason, my itineraries are written for kids 8 and up, so in general there’s some items you may want to cut out. See this: http://yourfirstvisit.net/2011/03/09/the-comprehensive-guide-to-walt-disney-world-rides-and-attractions/ On your specifc question, yes, I’d take one of the two “extra” Saturday night FP+.

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