Part of our itinerary during our vacation in Japan was to bring Phoebie to Tokyo Disneyland. We skipped Disney Sea for this trip because we knew that Phoebie probably isn’t old enough for a lot of the rides.
We went for two days and had time to enjoy different things about the theme park.
Here’s what I learnt during our visit to Tokyo Disneyland:
1. Be prepared for the weather/season
Whether it’s winter or summer, make sure you are well prepared. After all, Disneyland means loads of time outdoors, be it queuing for rides or to watch parades.
We went during winter and I’m thankful that we brought heat tech with us. The winter winds made it colder than expected and the heat tech sachets gave us the warmth that we needed.
2. The weekend crowd
We spent two days in Disneyland, Sunday and Monday. The crowd on Sunday was insane. We arrived at the theme park at 9am and it was already packed. Because of the crowd, the queues for each ride was really really long. One queue we walked past stated a 120 minutes wait. That’s right, two hours! Imagine the precious time at the theme park wasted on queuing.
Even watching parades was a challenge because the locals would start reserving their seats along the parade as early as two hours before. That’s right, two hours again.
Thanks to our two days pass, we used Sunday to reserve seats to watch parades and Monday to take rides. While it was still fairly crowded on Monday, it was at least 50% lesser than the weekend crowd.
3. Schedule for parades and shows
Because of the crowd, it is best to get the schedule for the parades and shows, so that you don’t miss the best shows while queuing for rides.
Parades are the essence of Disneyland, so they are a must-watch.
4. “Reserving” seats for parades and shows
It’s a common saying that Singaporeans are kiasu. To queue early or to reserve good seats are typical traits. I say, this is a universal trait. People of any nationality will do it.
And I saw that in Japan. As mentioned in point 2, some locals start reserving seats for parades as early as two hours before. So if you want a good seat for a good view of the parades and you see people starting to reserve seats, it’s about time to do the same.
5. Baby center locations
Travelling with a baby or toddler means a need for a nursing room, whether to feed the baby or to change diapers. There are two baby centers in Tokyo Disneyland. The first one is in Toontown and the second one is between World Bazaar and Tomorrowland.
And I LOVE the baby centers!! They are well-equipped and the staff are very helpful.
A feeding room full of high chairs equipped with a hot water dispenser, a microwave oven and a sink with detergent to wash up after feeding, a nursing room with rows of cubicles and a changing room with rows of changing table are what you can find at these baby centers.
There is also a counter to purchase baby meals or diapers. So if you need anything, it’s all there.
6. Good neighbor hotels
If the theme park hotel is not within budget, but you want the convenience of hassle-free travel to Tokyo Disneyland, fret not. There is a network of Good Neighbor Hotels that you can stay at. There is a free shuttle service from these hotels to both Disneyland and Disney Sea.
Just let the hotel concierge know that you would like to book seats on the shuttle service. Okay, that’s the only hassle.
7. No selfie-monopods allowed
We found out about this by accident. Ben was adjusting the selfie-monopod and was approached by a staff. He explained to Ben that selfie-monopods are not allowed in the theme park. This is to prevent visitors from being injured accidentally by those who are taking pictures.
From the looks of how crowded the theme park can be, this rule is a good rule.
8. If crowded, pack food and eat while queuing
Queues for rides and time spent on waiting for parades can take quite long. So a common sight in Tokyo Disneyland is people munching on their meals while queuing or waiting. This is certainly a good use of time.
9. Buy tickets online
Buying tickets online saves the time you may have to spend at the entrance queuing for tickets. To be able to do this, of course, requires time to plan the dates you will be going to the theme park.
There you have it! These are what I’ve learnt on my first trip to Tokyo Disneyland!