Tips for solo traveler?
About This Page: This is a discussion on Tips for solo traveler? within the Disney for Adults, part of the PassPorter Community - Boards & Forums on Walt Disney World, Disneyland, Disney Cruise Line, and General Travel; Greetings, everyone! I'm Willie, and I'm a 50 year-old female (the name throws people sometimes ), and I'm planning a ...
Welcome! We're happy you've found the PassPorter Community -- the friendliest place to plan your vacation to Walt Disney World, Disney Cruise Line, Disneyland, and the world in general! You are now viewing the PassPorter Message Board Community as a guest, which gives you limited access. As our guest, feel free to browse our messages by selecting the forum you want to visit from the list below.
To post messages and ask questions, join our FREE community today and you'll get access to tools and resources not available to guests, such as our vacation countown timers, "living" avatars, private messaging system, database searches, downloads, and a special PassPorter discount code. Registration is fast, simple, and completely free. Just click the Join Our Community link.
Greetings, everyone! I'm Willie, and I'm a 50 year-old female (the name throws people sometimes ), and I'm planning a solo trip to WDW for September 2013. Although I've been to the World before, it's been quite some time, so I'm almost looking at this as my first trip. It will definitely be my first time staying on property.
Just wondering if any of you have tips for someone venturing to WDW alone? Anything I should be aware of, try, avoid, etc?
I've been looking at information about Photo Pass and wondering if it would be worthwhile for a single traveler? I'm thinking that it might, since it means I'd actually show up in some of my vacation photos! (I haven't mastered the FaceBook self portrait yet, although my 17 year-old grandniece has tried to teach me.)
Just so you know, I have traveled on my own before, and I enjoy it. I'd originally planned to make a trip to WDW with my nieces, who announced "Well, we don't want to go to Epcot, because Epcot is boring." I want two full days at Epcot! So, I'm going on my own, so I can do and see what I want, since it's been at least 20 years since my last visit.
Thanks in advance for any thoughts y'all might have!
I took my first solo trip to WDW in 2006 - just before I turned 51. I hadn't done a solo vacation of any kind before and I had a great time! Some suggestions from my experience:
-consider signing up for a tour. Disney does great tours and it's a nice way to interact with people. Two of my favorites are the Segway Tours (I've done the Epcot one twice and the Fort Wilderness one once) and the Keys to the Kingdom Tour at Magic Kingdom.
-I've also done several Signature Dining meals alone. If the restaurant offers a counter overlooking the kitchen I love to sit there and watch the chefs. I've sat at the Sushi Counter at the California Grill and at the Chef's counter at Flying Fish Cafe (I think that's now a dining experience in itself). I like having at least one sit down meal a day and several times I've been seated near another solo diner and ended up sharing conversation - and in one case dessert. Servers have always gone out of their way to make me feel welcome and to stop by for conversation when they have a minute.
-Take time to stop and enjoy the small things. Sitting on a bench on Main Street and watching the Dapper Dans - and the wonder in people's eyes when they see the Castle for the first time; wandering through the gardens in the Japanese pavilion in Epcot; talking to the cast members along the trails at Animal Kingdom - when you're a solo traveller you can enjoy what catches your interest without worrying about someone else being bored.
-As far as PhotoPass goes - I did it for my first solo trip - and LOVE the pictures. Keep in mind that the PhotoPass Photographers will also take a picture with your camera - so if you can just buy a couple and get the rest off your camera. Also I've gone up and offered to take pictures of families for them so they can ALL be in the picture and then asked them to snap one of me. It's a great way to strike up a conversation - and to get a picture.
-one other thought - see if any other PassPorters are going to be there when you go and set up a meet. I did that - in fact I think I set up 3 different ones - and some of the people I met on that trip have become dear friends.
I've been solo multiple times, I love it. Single rider line is awesome, I went on EE something like 4 or 5 times in the span of about an hour while I was there in January. I could have gone more, but my stomach said it was time to eat and I don't do EE after I eat!!!
I don't tend to do TS when I go solo, but that's as much because I prefer not to have to be somewhere at a specific time as anything. If I can get in somewhere as a walk up I'll do that, but when I go solo I don't do any ADR's.
Taking a tour is a really great idea if you can afford it. The only one I've done was the Backstage Magic tour. I loved it. It's pretty much an all day thing and lunch is included. I believe we went to Mama Melrose, it's been a few years so the restaurant may have changed by now!! Some day I'd also like to some of the other tours, especially the Wild Africa Trek, but the downside to going solo is if you're on a budget than it can be harder to do some of the extras. (This is also some of the reason I usually do QS, it's less expensive and you can order off the kids menu and not get frowned upon. This is great at some of the WS places!!!!)
Ok, I've rambled enough for now, if you have any specific questions I can try and answer those too!!
I was nervous my first trip but quickly discovered I LOVED going solo.
I have my 7th? 8th? trip coming up later this year and I am excited for it.
Be aware of your surroundings. Know who is nearby and be careful when going from the buses to your room after evening EMH. You want to have fun but also be safe!
I love using the single rider lines. They save so much time.
It's fun to stop in a bar and have a drink or two, chat with the people around you and the bartenders.
Ride the rides you want (I once rode HM 7 times in a row!) as often as you want and don't have to wait around for others to do the rides you don't like.
Take pictures! I love to take pictures and I can do that to my hearts content when I'm solo.
I've taken plenty of pictures for other people so everyone in their group can be in the picture. When I see them trying to get everyone in, I just offer to take the picture for them so they can all be in it. It's such a simple thing and it's a good feeling to help others and most are very appreciative of it.
Chat with people in lines and on the buses. It embarrasses my family when I talk to strangers (although my teenage son is more used to it now) so I can do that without embarrassing anyone.
Eat where you want. There are several restaurants I've tried that my family would never eat at and I'm looking forward to trying more in the future.
I have gotten the regular photopass on my last two trips. It's so nice to have pictures with me in them and I like the magic shots. So if you can afford it, photopass is great.
I pick one country in World Showcase each trip and explore it fully. I see the entertainment, watch the movie, explore every nook and cranny of the shops and try to eat there.
Have a great time!
Me, DH, DS17 and DD13
Last edited by ShellingConnie; 07-06-2012 at 04:14 PM..
I have done 3 solos, totally loved it.. Did what I wanted when I wanted, Had some meet-ups with other Passporters that happened to be there too. Ate what I wanted, Did people watching.. Rode the monorail to the Polly & sat out by the water enjoying the weather & watching boats. Chatted with people. It was great.. Only time I felt lonely was at night when I missed DH a lot.. We spent lots of time on the phone.. But I would do a Solo again..
I've only been to Disney once (with my husband), but I would think going solo would be a wonderful way to visit all the different resorts and take pics. When you go with other people, they often don't want to do that. Take your time and wander. If you go to AKL, make sure to go up every floor and search for the African art. I didn't realize it was there until the day we were leaving. I ran around like a nut taking pics of things I didn't even know were there. You can also go out back (Arusha Rock) and see the animals and talk with CM working that area. It's not just for resort guests.
Also, I bought Hidden Mickeys: A Field Guide to Walt Disney World's Best Kept Secrets by Steven Barrett for my honeymoon and never had a chance to use it! If you are into picture taking, you could spend some time searching out hidden mickeys; they're even at resorts.