I love shopping at Disney. I mean, I really love shopping at Disney. Picture it… my husband and sons rolling their eyes as I beg to go into EVERY store on property while explaining to them that the merchandise is NOT the same in every shop. That argument usually loses, so I tend to sneak away to shop while they aren’t looking or send them to the pool at our resort so I can browse the resort gift shops. Over the course of our trips, I manage to see a lot of the shops, even if I don’t get the hours and hours that I would like to spend shopping. While I love to see what’s new, there are a few items that I just have to buy on every Disney trip!
Here are my favorites:
1. Magic Band Accessories – Magic Bandits and MagicSliders are a new addition to the “must buy” list. We blinged out (is that an actual expression?) our Magic Bands as soon as we arrived at Disney World last fall. If I’m wearing that band for a week, I’m going to make it special!
2. Chip and Dale Pretzels – Have you tried the Chip and Dale pretzels? They LOOK like Mickey Mouse and they are crazy addicting. I love them so much that the big boss (Chip) sends me bags when he visits Disney. I seriously bring an extra bag for a carry on so that I can bring pretzels home.
3. Autograph Books – Who doesn’t love getting autographs from your favorite Disney character? I always get the kids new autograph books as soon as we arrive (or I sometimes buy them before our trip) so that we are ready to go at the first Goofy sighting. We always ask for characters to sign on one side of the books so that we can add a photo of them with the kids on the other side of the page.
4. Postcards – Everyone loves getting a fun postcard in the mail, so before we head to Disney I make up mailing labels (I know, I know. It’s a big nuts, but it saves time there) for folks we want to send postcards to from Disney. I make sure to buy them the first night so they can be written and mailed right away. We always send them to our children’s classes as school. The kids love them!
5. Gifts – Back to my husband… his favorite saying at Disney goes something like this: “We’re on vacation. We’re not here to buy something for everyone we know.” Yeah, yeah, yeah. I know that, but I also love buying fun Mickey jewelry for my nieces, kitchen stuff for the Grandparents and anything Cars related for my nephew. (Remember? I LOVE shopping at Disney!)
6. Something “girly” – Last year I went crazy the new Vera Bradley bags. (I mean, it’s Mickey Mouse on a Vera Bradley bag! C’mon!) The next trip I went nuts for the new Alex and Ani bracelets and scoured the parks until I found the bracelets I wanted. This year I’m thinking of a few Alex and Ani bracelets in gold. I have to calm my breathing a bit now since I’m so excited to see them in person. Seriously, how do my husband and kids NOT get excited about this?? Now that I think about, this one should be much higher on my list.
7. Vinylmation – We have been collecting these adorable figurines for a few years now. The kids each choose a new Vinylmation while we are at Disney and we line them up at home in the order they were collected as a daily reminder of our fun Disney trips. We have a nice Star Wars collection and my guess is that Indiana Jones will be joining the crew this year. I also grab a few extras for holiday gifts for the kids and for my coworkers who politely agree with me that they are just adorable.
8. Dated souvenirs – Whether it’s a keychain or a snowglobe, we love to get a small items with the year as a memory from the trip. We got the boys great Mickey figures their first trip with the dates on the character shirts.
As you can see, many of these items can be purchased directly through the Disney Store’s website. But, I think there is something more fun about buying authentic Disney Parks merchandise while in the Disney Parks. For me the Disney Store is like a pregame training program to help prep me for my Disney shopping.
What is your favorite souvenir to buy in the parks?