Avoid the top theme park travel mistakes and faux pas
In the spirit of helping you get the most enjoyment from your theme park vacation with the least amount of embarrassment, here are some of the top mistakes and faux pas
made by theme park visitors.
Drawing Goofy is okay. Being Goofy, not so much.
Don't be "that guy." This is your "not to do" list for your next (and every) theme park visit.
- Buying your "tickets" on Craiglist or eBay.
- Bringing wrapped presents to a theme park for a party. (You won't get them past the bag check.)
- Leaning on, grabbing, or pushing characters at a meet-and-greet.
- Sending someone ahead to get in line so the rest of your group can cut to join him.
- Yelling "Andy's coming!" at any point during your visit to a Disney theme park.
- Making a crying child go on a ride.
- Sitting in the "splash zone," then complaining when you get wet.
- Using shoe lifts or other tricks so that your too-short child looks tall enough to ride.
- Insisting that the Tom Sawyer Island rafts run on guide rails.
- Not turning off the flash when taking photos inside indoor attractions.
- Sitting at restaurant tables without food while diners are looking for a place to sit.
- Tipping at the Tokyo Disney Resort (or anywhere in Japan).
- Asking a Disney cast member where the Harry Potter ride is.
- Standing during a parade or fireworks when people behind you are sitting.
- Placing a child on your shoulders when others have been waiting behind you for the show.
Got another to add to the list? Please submit it in the comments!
Stepping on people's heels and/or pushing forward in line just because you think you'll get there faster if you invade other people's space. Yes I understand that most other parts of the world don't have the same personal space constraints that us Americans do, but you're not getting anywhere faster.
Stopping dead in the middle of the walkway without regard to the hundreds of people traveling behind you.
Where's Harry Potter -- I'm sorry, but that is just funny, wherever you are.
DEODORANT! I can't stress this enough, especially during summertime. You get hot & you sweat... you don't even smell that great with deodorant on. But try standing in line near someone that is wearing ZERO deodorant. I'd rather be stuck next to a crying child. They'll at least stop crying at some point. The stink never leaves.
I just got a wrapped present into Epcot a week ago. Must have been the fact that it was wrapped in Mickey Mouse wrapping paper.
According to the Sentinel, that "Andy's coming!" thing doesn't work. But I'm sure folks do it like mad anyway (and then keep yelling it over and over again because they're sure it'll work).
Taking a baby to a theme park should be on that list but some "fabulous" parents will try to convince me they are no child molesters. BUT changing the diapers of your bundles of joy in public is a big NO. I'm looking at you who did that before the parade in front of me on the pavement and you who did it at Pinocchio Village Haus, I was eating!
Don't ask when the 3 o'clock parade starts
Cynthia said "Stopping dead in the middle of the walkway without regard to the hundreds of people traveling behind you."
Don't try to haggle over prices. No, you will not get a quantity discount for buying six churros. No, it isn't cheaper because you're visiting with your grandkids. No, it doesn't matter that you live in Oregon; You still have to pay sales tax when you're in California (yes, I know that you can drive into Washington and get out of paying sales tax with your Oregon ID, but we're not in Washington, are we?).
Complaining that the main coffee location on Main Street sells awful coffee, is cramped, and has slow service, then complaining even more when Disney brings in Starbucks, expands the location, and multiplies the capacity.
As a theme park employee, I can say we like to help but please don't stop us in the pouring rain when we are trying to get into work to ask a silly question when your whole family is wearing their ponchos.
I know this is pretty disgusting, but if you make a mess that you can't or won't clean up, then please go to a cast member and tell them about the mess so it can get cleaned up. I am talking about vomit, pee, etc. I have seen it all just sitting there because whomever did it was too embarrassed etc. to report it. It needs to get reported and cleaned up quickly.
I will never gripe about a screaming kid at a character restaurant, but please, I beg you, do not sit in the Brown Derby and let your baby cry or kid throw a fit and not do the proper parenting thing and take them out of the main seating area to finish their meltdown.
1.Stop asking UK pavilion cast members at Epcot to say, "Harry Potter".
New issue for us! My husband is pretty big and we have a friend that is pretty big and the CM on POTC tried to put 4 of us in the same row. I was leaning over the edge and they kept announcing that you needed to stay in the boat!
Don't bring your children into the Main Street Confectionery, let them look at everything and then say they aren't allowed to have any. We'd rather not have to hear their temper tantrum just as much as you. And no, doing this in front of the kitchen WILL NOT automatically get you free samples for your crying child.
Please don't talk through the ride. Enjoy it and talk about life after
Don't hold an iPad over your head to take a picture of fireworks or anything else. You block the view of people behind you, and the iPad camera is awful anyway.
Lets modify that last one to be "Don't ever use an ipad to take a picture in public, period." No picture is worth looking that ridiculous. And don't take an ipad to a theme park. The whole point is that you're paying good money to be entertained in the first place.
"Not turning off the flash when taking photos inside indoor attractions."
What Tyler said. The last time I went to the parks, I noticed awfully a lot of people were carrying iPads and other tablets. The question is, why would anyone bring them to the parks? When I go to the parks, I usually just bring my iPhone which can take pictures and record video, access wi-fi to check the waiting time, restaurants, etc, etc at the parks. It's very compact and will do its job just fine.
This is my personal list of the top ten worst guest behaviors (with #1 being the worst):
Don't add to the show! Noone wants to hear you narrating haunted mansions intro, or fake screams on the Matterhorn or for God sakes your relationship gossip on the Pirates of the Caribbean! If you're that bored and unentertained on an attraction then don't ride! Some people are actually enjoying the attraction!
Do not yank on cast members' pin lanyards. Ask nicely to see their pins and they will hold the lanyards out for you to see.
Dont' yell or whistle to get the rest of your groups attention from 100 feet away.
These should be printed and handed out at theme park gates.
If the announcer is saying 'DO NOT STOP IN THE MIDDLE OF THE ROW' in a theatre.... DO NOT STOP IN THE MIDDLE FOOLS!!! I WILL step over you and you will hate me...but not as much as I loathe you in that moment.
Do NOT mock the hat!
Kelly, I couldn't have said it better myself. For some reason half the people that go into the shows think that they don't have to abide by the rules. I always want to stand up and yell for everybody to move to the end of the rows.
But I love seeing the cast member's reaction when I ask in a foreign voice where is Harry Potter at Magic Kingdom. Lol
It drives me crazy when I get into a queue and a party behind me decides I'm walking to slow and trails inches behind me. We're all going to the same place, it's not a race to get to where the line starts where we have to wait anyway!!
I love your list and many of the comment's lists but lets face it the world is full of ignorant, inconsiderate buttheads. The people who need to see these lists of what most of us would consider common courtesies won't be found on theme park enthusiast sites. The fact is that even if every good point here was put on a list, displayed to the public, published on maps, ect. we would still have to deal with IIBs on a regular basis because they don't read and they just don't care. The world revolves around them. For me half the enjoyment of visiting a theme park is the vibe. Most people are enjoying themselves and happy which generally leads to increased politeness. Not IIBs they ruin the vibe as well. The best we can do is set an example for theme park behavior and ignore the IIBs. I will end my rant with a Mickey Rourke quote from the movie "Barfly". "Its not that I don't like people. I just feel better when they're not around"
I disagree with the comment about taking pictures in a queue line. You are not getting on the ride any faster if you hurry through the queue only to wait closer to the entrance. If there is no wait to get on the ride or attraction up ahead, then letting those behind you pass while you take pictures is the right thing to do. But otherwise, what difference does it make?
Thomas, being English I have (for Absolutely Fabulous fans) once in a while, adopted my very best Edina Monsoon voice and blustered 'come along. Just move around the stupid people!' :-)
Mostly when it's too crowd, listen to "go all the way down, people". I know it's annoying sitting on the beginning or on the ending of the theatre, but it's even more annoying having to pass over seated people!
Jeffrey, I never saw Barfly, but that's a great quote. I hope to use it occasionally. :)
I think the most important faux pas has not been stated yet...
Do not get into the single rider's line as a family and then expect to ride together when you get to the load platform.
Don't let your toddler who can't even see over the handles push the stroller and run over the toes or heels of everyone unfortunate enough to be walking near you.
If you arrive just before a parade or fireworks show, you should not push your way to a good viewing spot. Others arrived early to claim the good spots. If you are not willing to arrive early, then you should accept the best view spot you can find without pushing, shoving or stepping in front of others.
People who smoke in the non-designated areas
"Asking a Disney cast member where the Harry Potter ride is."
Don't treat cast members like garbage. If you give them some dignity and respect, they will go out of their way to help you. They don't get paid as much as you think they do, and they have to deal with us guests all day long. This one's for Bob at the Carribean Beach Resort!
Don't be a wheeled conveyance user, stroller or ECV, who goes against or sideways to the flow of foot traffic after shows or parades when there are masses of people moving. Wait a few minutes and travel in less crowded pathways. In fact, always wait a few minutes, it makes everyone's life easier. Associated situation, if waiting in a pathway, hug the sides and don't stick out 5 feet with strollers and people. You are like boulders in a river, nothing but an unthinking obstacle.
Bringimg your turkey leg on California Screamin', getting in your seat, putting on your harness. Then when the cast member attempts to confiscate it, arguing until he lets you take it on.
When people have been waiting for hours to get a front row seat at a parade, Fantasmic or any other shows - don't send your unattended kids to stand in front of them "...because they are kids and deserve to see this."
If nursing a child, be mindful of the thousands of people around you. Go to somewhere where there isn't any people or at least cover up. Sure it's natural and the need can come quite suddenly, but so is pooping. Some people will think either is gross and I think most would agree that the crowded princess meet and greet line is not the oportune place for it.
I would say don't be that guy that takes for every to take a picture. I use to stop in till every time the person would get done taking the picture. But now when I see them just hold cam and wait for it and wait for it now I am done waiting for them. And another one. Because you paid 1oooo to go does not mean I am going to let you run over who you want to. A lot of other people paid the same and they are not doing it.
Oh,I was ROLLING at this list. So funny! All of it is true.
If you're walking on the path specifically made to move guests through a big crowd, for the love of God DO NOT STOP TO WATCH THE FIREWORKS.
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