So you’ve decided to take the family and travel to Walt Disney World in Orlando, Florida...great! Oh, so you’ve decided to drive there..okay that is a little bit more complicated depending upon where you are starting from. Let’s say you’re like me and you’re starting from New York, well you are going to need some provisions and helpful tips to survive the 14-16 hour drive! Luckily for you I’ve just returned from one such trip and have a some advice to help ease your journey if you are considering such a venture.
#1: First of all and probably most importantly, second to making sure you have enough money to get there and enjoy your time, make sure you’re traveling with someone you can stand to be in the car with for an entire day or more. If you’re sitting in a car with someone who can easily get on your nerves you might want to reconsider your journey. The last thing you want is to be sitting next to someone who you want to slap or throw out of a window for 14 hours. Having the right travel buddy can make the trip that much easier and trust me, whatever you can do to alleviate the frustration of sitting in a car for that long is a plus.
#2: Make sure you have enough money for gas, car provisions and of course for your time spent in Walt Disney World. Gas, although a lot cheaper than it’s been lately, is expensive. You will need at least $300 dedicated to just gas for the trip depending upon how many miles to the gallon your car gets. You are also going to need snacks and drinks for the car. You might also want to set aside some money for a hotel room for a night. But don’t forget you’re going to be spending at least a few days in the parks so you will need money for food and of course those coveted gifts for your loved ones back home.
#3: Provisions are key! You cannot take on such a drive without snacks and drinks for the car. Sure you can always stop along the way but remember the more times you stop the less driving time you’re spending. Each stop, especially for food, will add on at least 20 minutes more to your overall journey. If you pack enough substantial snacks, that can last in room temperatures for extended periods of time, you will make the trip less painful. Be sure to have enough water as well because you’re going to get thirsty, TRUST ME!
#4: Music and entertainment can always make the travel less mind numbing. Make sure your iPod is charged and your favorite playlist is queued up so you can rock out to your favorite songs and help pass the time. Bring a phone car charger along for the times when you’re the passenger. You can go on Facebook, Twitter or play your favorite game and before you know it you’re there!
#5: Make sure all parties traveling are drivers. It’s a long journey to Florida and it is not something that should be placed on only one driver. Switch off every few hours or every few states to give each person a break. People need to sleep, stretch and basically just relax otherwise you’re going to have a car full of cranky travelers.
#6: Don’t be afraid to get a hotel for a night along the way. Pick a time, mileage or even state and determine this to be your resting place. During my recent trip we drove to Savannah, Georgia and stayed the night before finishing our journey. It was a 12 hour drive to Savannah and only a 4 hour one to Florida from there but believe me that overnight sleep definitely helped. Plus you are going to need and want to have energy for your arrival because who wants to start their Disney vacation by sleeping in the room all day?
#7: Enjoy it, even if you’re stuck in traffic. Look you’re going to Disney World, the happiest place on earth. So you’re stuck in some ridiculous traffic it’s okay. Once the traffic clears you’ll be back on track and before you know it you will be riding Space Mountain or giving Mickey Mouse a hug!
Remember no matter what the road has in store for you at the end of that road is Walt Disney World and whole lot of wonderful memories to take back home with you.