These are some of the ideas I've collected and come up with for Disney packing essentials, and almost all of them came from the dollar store - in other words, these are super affordable things to bring along!
1. Hand Sanitizer
I don't think you can ever have too much hand sanitizer, especially when you're traveling and going to public places. Travel, pocket-sizes are perfect, especially at $.50 each!
2. Antibacterial Wipes
I found these Disney-themed Monsters Inc sanitary wipes at the dollar store and thought they'd be perfect for wiping down airplane trays and arm rests, and tables at restaurants.
3. Rain Ponchos
I remember from my years living in the south that afternoon rain/thunder storms are a common occurrence - happening almost every day as you get into the Summer months. The parks sell them, but I assume they'll be more expensive than the dollar store ponchos.
4. Laundry Organizers
I bought two pop-up hampers and two packages of zippered laundry bags (that have 3 per pack), and we already own a set of 3 laundry bags. These will travel really flat and take up almost no room, but will keep our hotel room clear of piles of laundry, and our suitcases from becoming a confusing mess of both clean and dirty clothes. I also saw a tip that suggested using a pop up laundry hamper for beach toys if you'll be spending any time at the beach - you can shake them all out and leave the sand where it belongs!
5. Liquid Handsoap
I heard that Disney resorts only provide bars of soap in the bathrooms, so I decided to grab an inexpensive bottle of liquid soap. Not only is it easier for my kids to use (and less drying) than a bar of soap, you can also use it to wash out bathing suits and other things. Bonus? I read a suggestion saying that if you bring something with a specific smell, every time you smell it in the future it will remind you of your trip. Love that idea! So I picked something fresh and yummy.
6. Cars Travel Tissues
I mean, tissues are necessary with little ones, right? And Cars themed ones? Uh, yes please. We're staying in a Cars Suite, so I'm playing up the Cars theme every chance I get.
7. Magic Towels
I have a feeling that convincing my kids to take their baths during our stay in Disney is going to be a fight. Everyone will be tired, sugared up, and overstimulated. Maybe offering these Disney themed towels for their baths will help convince them! (And if we decide to leave them behind? No big deal for $1)
8. Travel Baby Wipes
Just, ya know. I have a baby, and kids are messy, and travel sizes of wipes for diaper changes, spills, and face/hand cleaning is essential!
1. Kitchen Sponge
This one dawned on me when I was out shopping for other items I'd researched. You know those refillable mugs you get on the dining plan? What happens during the day when you switch from coffee to other things? Rinsing will work here and there, but eventually...things might get gross. I grabbed a package of kitchen sponges to use on our mugs and whatever else we go through and make messes with during our stay! Our room has a kitchenette that I hope to make at least a little use out of, so I thought these would be handy!
2. Travel Snack Containers
The dollar store has a ton of options for these, and each set has about 4-6 containers for $1. I wanted a set of containers we could lose or throw away without caring about, and I thought these different shapes and colors would be fun for the kids. I plan to pack snacks for the park in them, and they may even come in handy for storage of other little things we come across, like pressed pennies or pins.
3. Take & Toss Utensils
This is the off-brand dollar store version, but again - something we can get for cheap and say goodbye to easily. I don't know if Disney has utensils that will work for our littlest guy, so I'm bringing these along just in case. And they won't take up much room, either.
4. Tummy Tickler Juice (not pictured)
My kids don't drink a lot of juice, and buying something so novel isn't really a typical practice around here. But, I found these bottles for about $3 each at the grocery store, and decided they'd be the perfect size for refilling drinks for the kids. My older two will get the Disney refillable mugs, but those are likely too big for them, and we won't want to travel with 4 big mugs into the parks. These will be one round of juice (at least it's 100% juice?) with an extremely cute, Disney-themed topper, and then we can refill them with water and milk.
5. Coffeemate 2Go (not pictured)
Matt and I are kind of picky about our coffee. We like it strong, and we like it with Coffeemate French Vanilla creamer. We'll settle for some other options, but when I saw these ultra-concentrated, extremely easy to pack bottles of creamer, I knew our vacation coffee would be much more enjoyable with them! So I grabbed a couple with a coupon.
1. Disney Autograph Books
The dollar store had Disney-themed journals that I thought would be perfect to use as their autograph books for the characters we meet. I wish they were spiral-bound, but I couldn't say no to these - they had Lightening McQueen & Dusty (perfect for them), and the covers are hardback so they will travel well without getting all bent up.
2. Mickey Mouse Stickers
I mean.....we're going to Disney, right?
3. Mickey Notebooks
Maybe this is notebook overkill, but I wanted them to have some blank paper to color and craft with on our trips back and forth. And, ya know...Mickey!
4. Cars Tape
I found these super cute cars-themed tapes at the dollar store that the kids can use in their crafts on the way down. They'll love them!
5. Glow Sticks
I don't think we're going to stick around for any night-time parades or fireworks, but just in case we do - we have some super-cheap glow sticks to give the kids so they won't ask for the outrageously priced ones the parks will be selling. And if we don't stay that late? It'll make convincing them to get back to the hotel rooms easier if they have something to play with on the way, and they'll make bedtime routines easier, too. If you are staying for the after dark activities? They have light up wands and all kinds of things for $1!
6. Face Stickers
These are technically meant for decorating Easter eggs, but when I saw them I knew the kids would have a lot of fun making and drawing silly faces on our trips. They're small enough to pack easily and fit on the sheets of paper in their Mickey notebooks.
7. Mini Dry Erase Boards
These can be used for all kinds of things - from drawing, to playing hangman or tic tac toe, writing messages, keeping score for games, etc. Even better that they are Disney themed!
8. Double Sided Crayons
I know that the dollar store stocks these with more noticeable Disney characters, but the only ones I could find when I went were princesses - which, somewhat obviously, my kids are not into. So I settled for the Avengers ones. And if they break or lose these? It won't bother me!
Some other things worth mentioning? Clip-on fans for the stroller (we bought 2), a headphone/earbud splitter so multiple people can listen to the same movie or game while traveling, an external battery charger for longer phone life, and an extra memory card for when you fill yours up with pictures!
Hope those help! Let me know if you think of any other unique ideas!