Once upon a time, I had an old school slide out keyboard junky phone. I think technically it could be classified as a smartphone, because I’m like 92% sure it could access the internet, but… it was pretty basic. And then I took this basic phone with me to Disney when I was 2 months postpartum and a walking accident waiting to happen. And I dropped that phone at least 10 times on that trip (sometimes onto Little Kid’s head while he was nursing…), and eventually it was just dead. And it needed to be replaced. And thus began my love affair with all things iPhone… I mean come on, an iPhone is basically a mini computer that you carry around with you all the time, right? And the best part about the iPhone? The APPS! The games. The social media. The information at your fingertips. In this post I just want to share with you five apps that I personally use on a regular basis. They might not be The Best Apps Ever, but to me they’re right up there.
(ps I know at least most of these are available for Android phones, but I don’t really have anything to do with Android phones if I can help it. I legit cannot work my husband’s phone at all)
(1) My Disney Experience
Let’s start with the big one. My Disney Experience is Disney’s own app that controls evvvvverything, and it is free, baby (enjoy it, so few things at Disney are free)! Got a hotel reservation? Link it. Dining reservations? Link them. Bought tickets (or have an Annual Pass)? Link them. Already been and posed for Photopass photographers? You guessed it – they’re linked, and you can view them, save them, share them, whatever. You’ll find up-to-date wait times, you can make dining reservations or check menus, and very importantly: make FastPass+ selections (make your initial selections 60 days out, and then you can update as needed -even the day of- in the app). MDE is the app to have if you’re only going to pick one – although don’t worry, you can also log in through Disney’s website too.
(2) Magic Guide for Disney World
I’m fairly certain this is a paid app. Maybe it’s free to download but you pay for full features? Or maybe you just pay to remove ads. I don’t actually remember, because I got this over five years ago… and still use it. It was the first Disney app I purchased when I got my first iPhone. Back in the day, the Disney official app flat out sucked (it doesn’t anymore!) and I used this instead. It has maps, wait times, restaurant menus. It’s a pretty swank little app. I’ve found it to be mostly accurate, even the wait times, but it isn’t 100% accurate. The menus open faster than the website does, and can be a little bit easier to access than with MDE, so I especially use this at home for vacation planning.
(3) Countdown for Disney
What makes the wait for your next Disney trip not so miserable? Counting down to vacation day! I actually have two countdown apps (don’t judge me) since I’m usually planning two trips at a time. I love this one for ease of use. Plug in your date, pick a picture, and you’re good to go. You can turn on notifications so you have the little number countdown on the app icon, or you can turn them off and have to open the app to see the countdown.
(4) Shop Disney Parks
Okay, so this is an app that lets you buy things online that aren’t available in the standard Disney Store. That’s pretty cool, right? Funny enough, I mostly only use this app while actually at Disney… because it has a “find” feature. When Michael & I went for my birthday, we planned to relax and maybe hit up the pool by our room. I knew I would be buying a swimsuit at Disney, because I don’t actually own one (again, don’t judge me – I hate swimming). Once we got down there, I just plugged “bikini top” into the search, and found out where the design I wanted was in stock (Polynesian, if anyone cares). See, isn’t that awesome?? You can also scan items in gift shops to see if you can purchase online later (so you don’t have to haul your goodies home!), and I t is also nice to use back home. I especially like how all your little associations stay attached to your log in. I never have to scramble to input my DVC or AP information to get the discounts. Score!
(5) Hidden Mickeys
This is another paid app, but it is just fun. Have you heard about “hidden Mickeys”? Throughout Disney there are Mickey symbols hidden in plain sight. Some are easier to find than others. Sometimes they are drawn on an object, and sometimes other objects are positioned to make the Mickey symbol. This app helps you find ALL of the hidden Mickeys, and you can then check them off as you find them. A few years ago for Christmas I bought the book version of this for Big Kid. He loved it, and took the book to Disney with us… but the app is more convenient.
By no means is this a comprehensive list of awesome Disney apps. This isn’t even a comprehensive list of the Disney apps currently on my phone! But these are five apps that I use on a regular basis, and use a lot while down at Disney!