If you are wondering what to bring to a theme park in 2023, this helpful list will tell you what you can take and what you are not allowed to bring in.
Keep in mind the less gear you bring and the less weight you have to carry around all day will help maintain your energy levels. But bringing some essential gear will not only save you a few bucks on your vacation, it will help you when the hot sun is beating down on you or a summer rain storm rolls in.
Theme Park Packing List
Quite possibly aside from your entry ticket, a pair of comfortable walking shoes is the next essential item to wear to a theme park. It’s feasible you can easily walk nearly ten miles during a full day’s visit to a theme park. Having comfortable shoes will keep your attention focused on the cool attractions and not sore feet.
It’s summertime and the sun is hot and bearing down on you all day at your favorite theme park. Bringing a small tube of non-greasy, water resistant sunscreen to protect your exposed skin to the UV all day will make your visit more comfortable and you will avoid the red lobster look at the end of your trip! Be sure to apply per the directions, since typically one application will not be enough for one full day.
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Having and continually wearing a pair of polarized sunglasses will keep your eyes happy when you spend any great length of time in the outdoors during vacation season. We suggest a pair that is polarized since they help reduce glare from paved surfaces and bodies of water.
Wide Brim Hat
A wide brim hat or even a hat with a brim – such as a baseball cap – that will keep the direct sun out of your eyes is a great way to keep cool and keep the sun off your neck. We suggest if you bring a wide brim hat, make sure it has a string attached so when you’re indoors, you can take it off and reduce the chance of leaving it behind.
If your favorite theme park is in a more arid or location where the air is dry during the summer months, we suggest throwing in a small tube of lip balm to keep your lips moisturized and avoid drying out and cracking.
Summer rain storms are synonymous for rolling in on bright, blue sky days – especially the predictable afternoon storms in Florida theme parks. We suggest taking simple, lightweight rain poncho with a hood since some theme parks do not allow you to bring umbrellas. Getting caught out in a downpour and walking around the remainder of the day in wet clothes is sure to be a damper on your visit.
Refillable Water Bottle
If your favorite theme park allows them, taking a refillable water bottle is a great way to save on purchasing pricey bottles of plastic water in the theme parks. We suggest taking an insulated water bottle, such like a Klean Kanteen, to help keep your water cold on the hot days.
Cell Phone Case
For your next theme park visit, consider taking a waterproof pouch to place your cell phone and any small items you don’t want to get wet – especially if your day includes a ride or two on a log flume ride or Khali River Rapids!
Portable Power Bank / Device Charger
Spending the day in a theme park with your portable devices, like cell phones and cameras, can drain their batteries rather quickly. Often, you’re using roaming and data in lieu of having access to WiFi which take a toll on your portable devices batteries. Consider taking a portable power bank to charge your smartphones and camera batteries while you walk around the park.
While smartphone cameras are great, if you’re like me and you want to take more artistic pictures to commemorate your vacation at your favorite theme park, then don’t forget your digital camera and batteries!
Fanny Pack or Backpack
To make your days spent in theme parks more organized consider taking a fanny pack or a small backpack to carry the items in this packing list.
Food and Snacks
Brining a few of your favorite snacks in resealable, one quart bags is a great way to stay energized when you get hungry standing in the middle of an hour long theme park queue.
Pain Relief / Personal Medication
If your entire day is planned to be spent inside a theme park, be certain you bring any prescription medication you need as part of your regular health regimen. Also, if you’re like me who is prone to getting headaches a fair amount, be sure to bring an over-the-counter pain reliever. Consider a travel size medicine organizer to keep the need for large bottles out of your backpack or purse.
Let’s be honest, summertime equals mosquito and bug time! We suggest bringing a small, travel size bottle of bug spray. Evenings in theme parks are beautiful, but often that is the same time mosquitos and no-see-ums come out to play!
Hand Sanitizer / Wet Wipes
Most theme parks are kept clean by hard working Cast Members and Team Members. But keeping your hands clean and being adjacent to restrooms may not always be convenient. We suggest packing small travel size wet wipes or hand sanitizer into your theme park travel kit.
Stroller and Kid’s Gear
Little theme park enthusiasts need some help traveling around the theme parks all day. While most theme parks offer stroller rentals, a great way to save a few bucks and the little one’s legs is by taking your own, lightweight stroller. Having an easily foldable stroller is a great place to stow away any necessary items for the kiddos such as diaper bags, etc.
Theme Park Specific Accessories
Depending on which theme park you’re planning to visit, you may want to bring specific items that will enhance your visit. For example, if you already have an autograph book with some of your favorite characters signatures, be sure to bring that if you plan on attending character meet and greets.
Other items, such as Harry Potter wands, may want to be in your daily gear. Interactive wands that can be utilized in the Harry Potter themed lands are a great way to immersive yourself even further into the story.
What Not To Bring To A Theme Park
There are many things that are not allowed in most theme parks. Prior to arriving, be sure to check the specific theme park’s website you’re plantain to visit to confirm. These items may include the following:
- Glass containers This includes water bottles, drink bottles, food containers, etc.
- Weapons or firearms
- Hard-sided coolers
- Soft-sided coolers larger than the dimensions posted above
- Folding chairs
- Selfie Sticks
- Picnic lunches
- Foods that require refrigeration or heating (unless medically necessary or for babies)