Monday, October 20, 2014

How to pick the perfect Disney World bag

This is part 1 of a 2 part series. Today is how to choose the perfect Disney World bag. Tomorrow is how to pack the perfect park bag.

Not sure how I would function at Walt Disney World without a good bag. I have read that people purposefully don't take a bag because there is nothing they need, especially with the introduction of Magic Bands. I couldn't handle this. First of all, my pockets would be full of junk (maps, money, ID, phone, etc.). Not sure I could handle that. I am a girl and I don't wear huge cargo shorts like men do.

I heard people argue that Disney has everything that you need. You can get free ice water at counter service restaurants, Bandaids at the Baby Care Center, and that your Magic Band does everything.

Here is my argument to those people:

Yes, I get the free ice water but I am also a dining plan person. Usually with my breakfast counter service meal I will fill my free mug up with soda or coffee and then get a bottled water or soda as my drink that comes with my meal. I then save that bottled drink for the park that day. I like having something with a lid if I am in line for a ride or if I am making use of Disney's free transportation.

Yes, Disney provides Bandaids, Tylenol, and whatever else at each of their parks. BUT what if I am getting ready to get in line at Space Mountain and find that I have hurt myself and am bleeding? I would have to traipse all the way over to the Baby Care Center to get a Bandaid and then go all the way back over to Space Mountain (probably missing out on a short line). If I had my tiny First Aide kit that I made here, then I wouldn't have to miss my short line, I could patch myself up and then ride!!

Yes, my Magic Band does everything. Yes, it is fabulous. The problem is this, to purchase some things you have to have your ID, as well. Also, there are some things that just require cash (balloons, food carts) and not something linked to my credit card. Because of this, I carry a small wallet to keep everything together and tidy.

Now on to my perfect Disney bag. I always have a bag. My kids are also told to carry bags because I will not carry their stuff. This may sound harsh but I am not Hagrid, I am not the keeper of the keys. If you want to bring it, you carry it. That includes your phone, money, maps, time guides, pressed penny money, etc.

Don't you just love Hagrid?

In years past, I have tried out several different bags. I carried a Vera Bradley backpack, which was great but was bothersome to put on/take off for rides and such. I have also used a cross body purse, which left horrid tan lines when I went one year in July and it doesn't hold much stuff.  I have used a tote bag, one of those Disney World spend ______ amount and you get the privilege of buying this item at this price (I am a sucker for those deals), and the tote bag seems to be the best option for ME. My mom prefers her backpack because the weight of what she is carrying is easily distributed on her back. My kids use those string styled backpacks (Xander has Adidas and Eve now has Thirty-One).

I used my Mickey Mouse bag last year but it is black and hard to find stuff that falls into the bottom. I liked having a tote, though. If we were riding a big ride (think Harry Potter and the Forbidden Journey) the kids could put their backpacks into my tote bag and then my mom would only have 1 bag to watch and it would be easier for her to meander around with 1 as opposed to 3 bags.

In 2010, I spent $20 so I could buy this cute bag for $19.95.

This summer I tried out my new Thirty-One Retro Metro Fold-over bag at the Indianapolis Zoo. I loved it. It is light colored and I can see things easily if they fall to the bottom. What is also nice is the 2 outside pockets, I used one for my phone and one for my water bottle. It is a cross body which like I said before leaves nasty tan lines but it also has tote bag style straps, so it can be worn either way.


I have decided that this bag is the best for me. I highly recommend it. It comes in several colors and you can have it personalized. 

When choosing the right bag for YOU make sure you try it out before your trip. Take it grocery shopping, to the zoo, or on a field trip with your kids. If it is easy to carry, not too heavy, you can find stuff easily, and doesn't make you crazy, then you found the best bag for you.

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