“Patience is not simply the ability to wait – it’s how we behave while we’re waiting,” says Joyce Meyer, and here are some fun ways to pass the time while waiting in line at Disney.
The Disney Shout! app is lots of fun. (You can read my family’s full review here.) It’s a great way to really get in the spirit and make the most of your time in the Mouse House. We felt like this was a fun version of the Heads Up! app, which is the first interactive guessing game we played on our smartphone as a family while waiting in line at Disney World a few years ago. We had first seen Ellen Degeneres was a fan, and it’s easy to see why. It was especially fun because more often than not, other people in line joined in. It’s true – the more the merrier!
Both are interactive and anyone can play, hence the fun with strangers. If you are going to go this route, though, consider an external charger for your phone so you don’t get the dreaded low battery signal or worse, a dead phone.
Old School Games
The oldies but goodies have had staying power for a reason – they’re fun and easy, and they don’t drain your phone battery. It’s can also be nice to just really disconnect and put the phone away for a while, especially if there are drinks and munchies around.
- We play a lot of “this or that” aka “I’d rather” using all Disney things. Would you rather have lunch with Cinderella or Sleeping Beauty? Who would be more fun to play a game with – Woody or Buzz? It’s fun to pick among favorite things that are sure to please, and can even be a great way to plan the remainder of your time in the parks.
- Another great one is I Spy, because there’s a whole lot to spy at Disney.
- I confess that games of Simon Says have been played as well. Also, check out the app that tells you where Hidden Mickeys are, but first spend time looking for them in line.
- Rock. Scissors. Paper. Not original, but it can do the trick. Have a family tournament where the winner get to play the next family member, and so on.
- Thumb war, but only if siblings can touch without issue.
Play around in the interactive queues
Disney takes care to make some of the lines are really fun. The queue for Peter Pan’s Flight, which has infamously high wait times, was recently redone to be like you’re wandering through the Darling home. It feels a lot less like a tedious wait when you get to watch Tinker Bell fly around and interact with Wendy, John and Michael’s toys and see your own shadows come alive on the wall in the children’s nursery.
There is a play space where kids can run around waiting for Dumbo, and bleachers where tired parents can sit. There are some games to play in line for Winnie the Pooh, including a screen that dumps virtual honey on your children. The drums in the line may not be my favorite, but they sure keep the kids busy.
I confess that I was sad to use a Fast Pass on the Mine Train (I know, the hardship) because the line looks like lots of fun, with gem sorting and barrel spinning. And the line for the Haunted Mansion is the perfect set up for the ride.
My family likes to get a little bit of an energy boost from a quick snack while in line. We usually bring in small snacks and whether it’s a sucker, granola bar or a few Skittles, a quick taste of something that can’t melt is often a big hit when we first enter a line and know we have a little of time. It’s also a good time to hit the water bottle.
Strike up a conversation
If there’s a cast member manning the line, as there often is for character meet and greets, they can be fun to talk with and are generally pretty engaging. They have name tags have their name and where they are from, so ask them about where their hometown. The same is true for the Fast Pass photographers, especially those waiting with you for characters to return from break. It’s always fun to ask cast members about their favorites, be it rides or places to eat on property – they can be a font of wonderful information.
Talking to strangers is less scary when you’re at Disney. You’re surrounded by a lot of people who like Disney (figure they wouldn’t pay the admission price if they didn’t, right?) Take advantage of the shared interest and talk to your neighbors, too! But also take the hint if they’re not so interested in socializing and not force the issue.
Take silly selfies
My tween loved doing this! Although I my not be the biggest selfie fan (and remember Disney doesn’t allow selfie sticks on rides), we did all get a lot of good laughs from doing this. When I went to the Disney Social Media Moms Celebration and my husband and daughter were at the parks, these were my favorite photos that they sent.
Count your blessings
Waiting in line is tough, and it can be when people start to get a little cranky. That’s completely understandable, but a quick reframing can put the focus on the positive. Talk about what you’re grateful for in the past day, week, year, decade. You’re at Disney, so there’s a lot to be thankful for right there! Sometimes verbalizing the positive can be just the attitude shift needed for tired park goers.
While I hope that you have very, very short lines on your next visit, but if you don’t, hopefully these ideas will help. And while these are great for Disney, the majority of these suggestions work just about anywhere, from the grocery story to restaurants. In fact, I pulled out Disney Shout! yesterday when we were waiting at IHOP.
What is your favorite way to pass a wait in line?
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