Disneyland Paris holiday hacks to know before your next visit

Maximise the magic on your Disneyland Paris trip


by Lucie Cave |
Posted on

Disneyland Paris is a bucket-list must-do for the kids in your family (and the kid in you) – and we’ve got some tips that will help your bank balance and save brain power. With so much to do - two theme parks, 54 attractions and with more than 30 restaurants – it can be a mind-boggle to fathom, so you need military Mickey Mouse precision planning.

Before you go

Avoid crowds and save pennies

Save money by skipping the school holidays. Low season is usually between 1st November to 31st March.

For extra sparkle

Magical events like Halloween and Christmas are spectacles not to be missed. Plus there’s still time (until end of September) to catch the 30th Anniversary celebrations including "Disney D-Light" - a first-ever choreographed drone show at a Disney Park that combines illuminated water jets, lighting effects, and classic Disney songs.

Allow enough time

You can’t do it all in a day. Even if you’re going at the superspeed of Buzz Lightyear. A two-three night holiday is the optimum length to soak everything in.

Know your hotels

The most cost-effective Disney hotel is the 2-star Disney Hotel Santa Fe* . While the 4-star Disney Hotel New York – The Art of Marvel is a must for superhero lovers. While some people opt for off-site, there are loads of deals){href='http://The most cost-effective Disney hotel: is the 2-star Disney Hotel Santa Fe* . While the 4-star Disney Hotel New York – The Art of Marvel is a must for superhero lovers. While some people opt for off-site, there are loads of deals showing benefits of a package price, whether that be hotel and tickets or hotel, tickets and travel (Check out:  https://www.disneylandparis.com/en-gb/when-to-visit-disneyland-paris/)' target='_blank' rel='noreferrer noopener nofollow'}showing benefits of a package price, whether that be hotel and tickets or hotel, tickets and travel.

Extra Magic time

Make the most of the Extra Magic Time, which is a perk of staying in one of the seven Disney hotels. This is the time before the resort opens to enjoy the most popular rides!

Book in advance

Especially if you decide to stay off-site and buy a ticket package separately. Be sure to buy ‘dated’ rather than undated tickets (you can save up to 40%). Disney super fans can save money with an annual pass. If you want to stay more than three nights or are likely to visit again, this is definitely worth looking into. The silver and gold give special discounts too.   You don’t need to fork out on a fast pass (aka the Disneyland Premier Access pass) if you stay in one of the Disney hotels and get the Extra Magic Time. But a Disney Premier Access one is also a great cheaper option - although they are time-slot specific so it does require a little planning.

Make use of the app

Download the free Disneyland Paris app way ahead of your trip – some restaurant reservations (like the character dining experiences and table service restaurants) need to be done around two months in advance.

Pack the essentials

Bring your poncho, an autograph book and kids costumes, rather than buy them when you’re there. Bring a portable charger (those pics are going to kill your battery) and bring a bottle - all quick service locations have free drinking water.

When you're there

Make the most of the Extra Magic Time by choosing rides with the longest waiting times – like Big Thunder Mountain, Peter Pan’s Flight, and Buzz Lightyear Laser Blast in the Disneyland Park and Spider-Man W.E.B. Adventure and Crush's Coaster in Walt Disney Studios Park. The Disneyland app will also give you waiting times for queues throughout the day.

Do the opposite to everyone else

Eat at times when its less busy (avoid 12 and 5pm) and go on the busier rides when everyone else is pre-occupied – e.g popular rides like Big Thunder Mountain, Star Wars Hyperspace Mountain, Star Tours, The Twilight Zone Tower of Terror, etc that can have wait times of up to one hour.  Being a single rider also helps with queue times. If you’re the only one in your group who wants to go faster, you can fill spare seats and get on rides quicker by taking advantage of the single rider queues.

Parades and shows

Plan parades and shows strategically - secure a spot for parades and shows at least 30 minutes before start time to get the best view (the Disneyland Paris app tells you start times). Make time to see one of the shows. See the newest spectacle TOGETHER: a Pixar Musical Adventure at Walt Disney Studios Park takes you on a journey through the wonderful worlds of Toy Story, Monsters, Inc., Finding Nemo and many others.

Where to eat

For Ratatouille fans: Bistrot Chez Rémy – book this sit down restaurant in advance to pretend you’re in the Parisian movie - decor is fantastic and food is lovely.

For Marvel maniacs**:** Quick service Stark Factory and buffet style  PYM Kitchen.

For Fairytale lovers: it’s all about Auberge de Cendrillon nestled inside a castle. Book in advance for a lunch with your favourite Disney Princesses. Spenny but magical.

Top three rides

1. Avengers Assemble: Flight Force -  a dark and magical mystery roller coaster in Walt Disney Studios Park, Avengers Campus – which opened 20th July 2022.

2. Ratatouille: The Adventure - shrink down to the size of Remy and his rodant mates and dodge, scurry to safety in a super-fun immersive chase round the hob. You’re a rat in the kitchen (what are you gonna do?)

3. Star Tours: The Adventures Continue - An oldie but goodie. Takes you on a thrilling 3D voyage to a galaxy far, far away – kids and big kids loved it.

Example Package: A two-night stay at Disneyland Paris from £313 per person, including accommodation at Disney Hotel Santa Fe® with access to the Disney Parks for three days plus travel. To book visit: www.disneylandparis.com or call our Disney Experts on 0800 169 0737. Price is based on two adults and two children (aged 3-9) sharing a Cars Standard Room at Disney Hotel Santa Fe®, with return Eurostar travel via Lille from London St Pancras to Disneyland Paris (Marne-la-Vallee). Price is based on a departure date of 7th November 2023. All prices and itinerary correct as of 11th August 2023 and subject to availability and change. Walt Disney Travel Company International is a member of ABTA and is ATOL protected. ATOL certificate number 10404

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