Going to the parks has its advantages and disadvantages. First it’s an expensive endeavor unless you are quite careful and have cooperative children. One important advantage is that you wrack up some great ideas and rituals for going to the park. In my weekly Pro Tip Column, I will share with you one or two tips every Friday to help you build a great trip.
For most of the year in Florida, you are going to sweat while you are at the
park. If you have children, this means trying to push lots of fluids to keep them hydrated while doing the same for yourself. Although most people know to bring in some water bottles, by the end of the day, when you are walking out to that huge parking lot, you are probably nearly out of all your provisions and anything your brought with you is now warm. Whether you are driving an hour to get back to Tampa or fifteen minutes to get back to the hotel, dealing with tired and hot children/adults can be tough. So plan ahead. ON the way to the park, pack a small cooler with some sodas, juice bags, water bottles and some ice or cool packs. When you return to the car and get everyone situated, you can then reward them with some icy cold refreshment for the ride back. Works wonders!
It rains in Florida, a lot. Disney loves to break out the ponchos at every cash register the moment the drops start falling. Trying to keep every part of you dry is hopeless. However, there is one thing I would highly recommend you consider even if you using a raincoats and ponchos. Bring several sizes of zip-lock bags. Snack and sandwich sizes are great but a couple of quart and gallon would be helpful too. With all the cell phones, small cameras, and other electronics making their way into the parks nowadays, finding some quick protection for them is really important. Whether you are about to get soaked on Splash Mountain, or if you happen to catch a surprise wave at Pirates of the Caribbean, it is no fun to get on the ride and realize you are still holding your iPhone. So keep a ziplock in your back pocket and a couple of extras in your backpack.
If you are a regular you may want to invest in a waterproof bag specifically made for your device. You won’t have to worry at all and your device is still accessible while in the bag. Aquapac makes an assortment of waterproof bags for cameras and phones
that will still allow you to use your device while stowed. You will notice in the picture that the case on the right has a small bulge. This is for those compact zoom cameras to allow the extension of their lens into the bag without damaging the camera.
Whether you are going to use a ziplock or a dedicated waterproof case, it is always a good idea to get some desiccates to have on hand. Desiccates are small pouches that contain a water absorbing material that will dry out the inside of the pouch. Even if you place your camera or phone in a dry bag, you may find that once inside that
condensation will form inside the bag. The small pouch will keep the inside of the bag dry as a bone. Besides the obvious protection this offers it also makes it easier to get your phone or camera in and out of the bag.