Disney World Planning 101 – Packing Tips From A Pixie

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A box of 52 gallon Ziploc bags.


As a step-mother to a 9-year old boy, our first family trip to Disney World had me completely paranoid. I can pack myself and my husband with my eyes closed, and even with this confidence I start packing a few days (or weeks) before my vacation. I like the visual of the open suitcase, and adding and editing things as needed; and at long last….doing the final zip. When it came to traveling with a child every fear i’ve ever had was multiplied by 1,000 and none of those even included packing.

I started with what I knew: that in the wee hours of the morning while the worlds smallest coffee pot was brewing, I would be in no mood to be hunting for outfits, so I planned ahead. I grabbed my tools: a box of gallon sized Ziploc bags and a Sharpee and I went to work. I cleared a space and started making outfits, in each Ziploc bag went that day’s outfit including a T-shirt, shorts, underwear, and socks. For the nights I knew we would be dining at a signature restaurant I put a collared shirt in there as well (one that coordinated with the current short selection–I don’t need extra laundry!)
Every bag had a date and day marked on it (with a sharpee of course), I put each bag in the suitcase and from the suitcase to the drawer in the hotel room. And each morning all he had to do was find the bag with that day’s day (and date) and get dressed.

The Ziploc bags served a dual process: a kid proof outfit kit, and a space maximizer. The bags compressed clothes and maximized space in the suitcase! In an effort to be environmentally friendly, I decided to re-use the bags for future vacations so I wrote the day and date on a piece of paper that went inside the bag so I could re-use them with no confusion.

For us “grown up’s” we didn’t need the individual Ziploc bags, however I did bring the XL sized Ziploc bags to use for dirty clothes. When full each large blue bag fits inside of our largest suitcase and come in handy for dirty clothes. Just stand them up under the sink, and deposit the dirties (separated by colors of course!). Then when you get home all you have to do is a pick a bag and dump it in the washing machine; your sorting is already done! This also helps with space as the bags compress the air and help you make room for those last minute souvenirs in the suitcase.

If your family does laundry during your trip, the bags are great for carrying clothes to the laundry room (they have handles) and make the walk back to the room worry-free, even in the rain.

For the resorts that operate on coin laundry, you’ll find a bill changing machine in the laundry room, as well as detergent and other laundry necessities.

Tip: If you are out of quarters for penny presses this is a good time to cash in a few bucks; saves you from having to wait in line at one of the shops to get quarters!

We’ve tackled two obstacles and given you a good start to your vacation (packing) and a strong finish (laundry). Use these and other tips to make your Disney vacation worry free & pixie perfect.

Disney World Planning 101 - Packing Tips From A Pixie


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2 thoughts on “Disney World Planning 101 – Packing Tips From A Pixie

  1. This is a great idea, I don’t have to pack for children but when I am packing for myself I count out socks, underwear etc., then I usually go back and count again! I have a packing list that I use and re-write from trip to trip, adding or deleting things that I missed or didn’t use. I always bring ziploc bags for the return trip from the water park! That way if I am going for dinner after a day at the water park, I know my bathing suit isn’t going to soak whatever else I have in my day pack. I like what Gayle uses, I may get one of those fold and flips!

  2. I do something similar, without the plastic bags. I use a Flip-&-Fold for my t-shirts at home. When I’m packing for us, I’ll lay the shirt out flat, then lay the socks, underwear, & shorts out on top, then flip & fold. The shirt forms a neat package around the outfit.

    The XL bags are a great tip for laundry – thanks for that! Another laundry tip is to take along some Purex 3-in-1 sheets – they are so much more convenient than separate detergent & fabric softener & they smell great.

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