Five Etiquette Mistakes to Avoid at Walt Disney World
Five Etiquette Mistakes to Avoid at Walt Disney World
Please don’t be “that person”
Walt Disney World is a very popular family vacation destination and for the most part the overwhelming majority of guests here have fun and respect their fellow guests. So when etiquette fails occur, they tend to really stand out and cause other guests to take notice.
After nearly 50 years of traveling to Disney Parks on a regular basis, there are five things in particular that really stand out to me as etiquette mistakes. Being aware of these in advance is half the battle. Most of these are points of common courtesy, so it shouldn’t be too hard to adapt behavior.
1. Saving Spots in Line
Has this ever happened to you?
You’re waiting in a long line for a ride or attraction in a Disney park and after a good amount of time, a few people come up behind you in the line with the inevitable “excuse me, pardon me…” They’re pushing their way through the line until they meet up with another person in front of you — and everyone else they’ve just passed. Suddenly, you are five or ten spots further back in line, after waiting for half an hour or 45 minutes already. No one wants to lose ground when waiting in line.
Nothing irritates other guests more in line than people who think they’re privileged with a reserved spot. Disney already has a solution for this and it’s called a FastPass+. So for those people who think that one person can hold a spot in line for a group or family, who can then saunter up and squeeze past every other guest in line, please don’t do this.
I have made this point number one because I have seen this one come to blows (or near blows — very angry shoving and loud voices at least) at Rock ’n’ Roller Coaster in Disney’s Hollywood Studios. Starting a fight at Walt Disney World is not something that you want to do.
It is common etiquette that guests should wait in line and not push others further back in the line by having a group of their friends or family push their way to the front because someone was holding a spot. If someone has to go to the bathroom or something, that is different. But the designated line holder is definitely frowned upon at Walt Disney World and it could turn into an ugly situation depending on the frustrations of those around you.
2. Blocking children from seeing a parade or show
Believe it or not, I see this one happen far more often than it ever should and it is a close second when it comes to the potential to lead to physical confrontations.
As adults, many of us are big Disney fans and we love to watch parades and stage shows as much as any other Disney fan, young or old. However, when watching a parade or a stage show in a Disney Park, it’s important to remember that the children come first. Standing up in front of smaller kids when a parade approaches, or pushing your way past kids to block their view so that you can see is not good Disney Parks etiquette. Let the kids stand in front of you so that you can both see the magic. It’s a very simple and considerate solution.
Unfortunately, I often see adults who push their way past young kids or otherwise stand and block their view without a thought or care in the world. This is not the way of Disney magic and it’s just plain rude and thoughtless. Don’t be that person.
3. Being overly noisy in your hotel room
This one is all about common courtesy and it’s one that’s easy to forget because it’s a case of out-of-sight-out-of-mind.
We all love to have fun and are generally in a good mood on a Disney vacation. But it’s important to remember that most Walt Disney World hotels have paper thin walls (with the exception of a few gems, such as Disney’s Contemporary Resort and Disney’s Polynesian Village Resort). So try to remember that your hotel neighbours can hear just about everything that you’re saying if you speak loudly or yell. This is particularly true for the early morning hours and late evening hours. No one wants to have hotel security come knock on their door due to a noise complaint.
Give other guests a break and have some respect for your neighbours next door. It’s good Disney etiquette and will make for a more enjoyable Walt Disney World vacation for all concerned.
4. Talking through shows or attractions
This is one of my personal pet peeves.
You’re sitting in a theatre for a Disney attraction or show and the people behind you are chatting away as if they’re only in the room to get 20 minutes of air conditioning.
Chatting through theatre performances is rude and obnoxious and it’s definitely not good Disney etiquette. So remember to be aware that you are ruining the magic for all guests within earshot if you choose to become a distraction. Once again, have some common courtesy and avoid chatting non-stop while others are trying to enjoy a performance.
5. Using foul language at any time
Thankfully, foul language is not something that you hear very often at Walt Disney World. So when you do, it stands out like a sore thumb and it can have a very negative affect on children and your fellow guests.
Even when things go wrong or something doesn’t go as planned, try to remember where you are at all times and use ear-friendly expletives if you feel the need to vent for any reason.
What do you see as etiquette errors at Walt Disney World?
Planning a Walt Disney World Vacation?
Subscribe to my Luxury Disney Travel Newsletter to keep up-to-date on the latest Disney travel news and feature stories.
If you are already a regular Disney traveler, consider sharing your views as part of the Disney Travel Survey Panel: sign up or learn more.
Mike Belobradic: The Finer Side of Disney Travel
Luxury Travel Blogger – Disney Travel Expert