Top 10 Reasons to Travel Solo To Disney World

by Gray Cargill on March 30, 2010

Are you a Disney fan?  Have you ever traveled to Disney World solo?  If not, you don’t know what you’re missing!  Here’s my list for the top 10 reasons why you should consider going to this fun vacation destination sans companions.

Rock N Rollercoaster

Rock N Rollercoaster is one of 3 Disney rides with a Single Rider Line

1. Single Rider Lines - This may just be the most awesome feature of being solo at  Disney World.  The Single Rider Line allows you to bypass all the families, groups, and couples standing in the Stand By Queue and practically walk right on the ride.  Why?  Because they need single riders to fill in rows on rides, that’s why. Score!  The only downside to the Single Rider Line is that there aren’t more of them.  Right now, only Rock ‘N’ Rollercoaster (Hollywood Studios), Expedition Everest (Animal Kingdom), and Test Track (Epcot) have them.

Me with Donald Duck

Get your photo taken by a Photopass Photographer

2. Photopass Photographers – Finally! Someone to take your picture for you when you travel solo.  I wish all tourist destinations had people whose job it was to take your picture.  Photopass photographers are usually positioned at prime “photo opp” locations in the parks, such as near the Tree of Life in Animal Kingdom, near Cinderella’s Castle at the Magic Kingdom, and near the fountains with a view of Spaceship Earth in Epcot. Another way to get your photo taken at the parks is to get in line for a character photo.  Or you could offer to take a picture of someone else in exchange for them taking yours.  But the Photopass Photographers are the easiest, since it’s their job to do it.  You don’t have to purchase the Photopass, either.  They are happy to take your photo with your own camera if you ask them to.

Bar at Planet Hollywood, Downtown Disney

Bartop Dining at Planet Hollywood, Downtown Disney

3. Restaurants with Counter and Bar Dining – Bartop dining is great for those solo travelers who feel uncomfortable with the idea of dining at a table for one in the middle of a crowded restaurant, or who just want some company while they eat.  It’s also great for those of you who don’t like to make Advanced Dining Reservations (ADRs) because you want to be flexible about when you eat. Without an ADR, you may find yourself having a hard time getting a table at a Disney restaurant without a long wait–if you can get one at all.  In those situations, try one of the restaurants that have counter or bartop dining.  There are a number of them on Disney property, including the parks (like Yak & Yeti at Animal Kingdom), the Deluxe resorts (such as the California Grill at the Contemporary), the Boardwalk (Bluezoo, Big River Grille) and several in Downtown Disney (House of Blues, Wolfgang Puck, Planet Hollywood). As a solo diner, you only need to find one empty seat at the bar.

Which leads me to. . . .

Hammock

All you need is one

4. The One Seat Advantage – As a solo traveler, you can easily squeeze in where others can’t.  Whether it’s a seat on a bus, boat or monorail, a lounge chair at the pool, a seat at one of Disney’s live shows, or a hammock on the beach at your resort, you only need to find one empty seat, which is a whole lot easier than finding two or more together.

No Swimming sign

No one to tell you what you can’t do

5. Freedom – This is one of the best things about traveling solo anywhere, including Disney World.  Your time is your own. No negotiating with other people about what to do next.  If you feel like sitting around the pool all day, you can.  If you want to go on the same ride three times in a row–who’s to stop you? You can also travel to Disney World whenever it’s convenient for you, without having to worry about someone else’s vacation schedule.

Off Kilter, the band

Enjoy a show like Off Kilter at Epcot

6. Shows - Disney has a ton of great shows, from Monsters Inc. Laugh Floor to Finding Nemo to the Lion King to the free shows at Epcot, like Off-Kilter and Mo Rockin. Take advantage of them!  Not only are they great entertainment, they allow you to blend in as part of a crowd without anyone knowing you’re alone (if you care about such things). Or you can take the opportunity to strike up a conversation with the person next to you.  Who knows? You might make a new friend.

Darth Vader and Jedi at Hollywood Studios

You don’t have to worry about fighting with your family if you go “Solo”

7. No Fighting with A Travel Companion – Maybe it’s the killer pace, maybe it’s the crowds, maybe it’s too much togetherness that causes people to have a short fuse at Disney World.  I don’t know.  But I have witnessed so many ugly family fights at the so-called “Happiest Place on Earth”.  Every single time I’ve seen one, I think:  “I am so glad I am here alone.”

Beach Swing

Find a restful, quiet spot all your own

8. Peace and quiet – After a day in the parks, surrounded by hundreds of people, all talking at once, plus the ambient background music and the noise made by shows and rides, the cacophany starts getting to me.  All I want is to find a solitary spot where I can enjoy some peace and quiet. So I do.  I either find a quiet bench outside at my resort, or close the door to my resort room and enjoy the silence.  I wouldn’t be able to do that if I were traveling with kids, friends, or a significant other–unless I booted them out of the room!

Rix Lounge Bottles

Indulge yourself in some adult activities

9. Adult Activities – When you want to go out at night at Disney World and have a drink or two and enjoy some live music at Jellyrolls, the House of Blues, or Raglan Road, for instance, you don’t have to worry about what to do with the kids.  You can also do a Monorail Crawl (similar to a pub crawl, but visiting a bar at each of the monorail resorts) or drink your way around the World Showcase without having to worry about setting a bad example for your children or angering the teatotalers in your group.

Expedition Everest

Have fun!

10. Because you CAN! Look, not everyone loves Disney World.  If you do, but you don’t know anyone else who does, why should you be deprived of an experience that will make you happy?  Just go and enjoy yourself.

Did I miss any of your favorite reasons for traveling solo to Disney?  Be sure to add them in the comments section below!

This post is part of the Disney Blog Carnival, where you can find a variety of Disney articles.

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Gray April 5, 2012 at 4:28 pm

I think you have a great idea there, James. Sometimes, it helps to have something to focus on for your first solo trip. I have a feeling you’ll meet a lot of people during the half-marathons, too.

James April 5, 2012 at 12:45 pm

Hi everyone! This is my first post here, but I’ve been considering a solo trip to a Disney park for some time now. Reading all these posts has given me some encouragement to get more serious about my plans. Although I have to admit that as a 30-something year-old guy who doesn’t travel much I am a bit intimidated by the idea.

I think I’ve found a way to make the trip feel more, I don’t know, “justified” I guess. I recently learned about the half-marathons that Disney runs at both Disneyland and Disney World. I’ve run a few 5k and 10k races before and I think I can get in shape enough to run those races. And while I’m there I could spend few extra days wandering around having fun. I think I’d still feel self-conscious, at least at first, but if I’m afraid to feel that way then I’ll never leave my home.

I too would be interested in some sort of meet-up for solo travelers. Possibly with others planning to run the half-marathons.

Jo Logan March 13, 2012 at 10:24 pm

DJ Dave there’s a group in Dis forum’s singles section. Check it out I’m sure ull find some other crazy Disney fans there.
http://www.disboards.com/forumdisplay.php?f=54

Gray March 13, 2012 at 5:25 pm

Hmm….good question, DJ Dave. I haven’t heard of any singles groups that meet to visit the parks, though I know various Disney message forums often have meetups in the parks. You might turn up something with a Google search, too. Good luck!

D J DAVE March 13, 2012 at 1:32 pm

I too am single and looking to meet people that also enjoy going to WDW. I am a annual pass holder and there never seems to be anyone who wants to go. Never been by myself befor but would love to meet up with others to go. Are there any single groups that meet and visit the parks ? Let me know of any web sights or clubs. Thanks

Gray March 2, 2012 at 7:31 pm

Aw, Harvey, I’m disappointed on your behalf. :-( I know how hard it can be sometimes to take time off from work, especially with offices being understaffed and overworked these days. But Christmas is definitely a cheery time to go to Disney World. Here’s hoping that’s a firm date for you!

Harvey Stone March 2, 2012 at 7:19 pm

Sadly, my solo trip to WDW is postponed. I had hoped to go this week, originally, then replanned it for Easter-time. Looks like I’ll have to wait until December now. Disney at Christmas time was very bright and colorful last time I was there, so I’m not terribly disappointed. It’s just so hard for me to get real time off work – very frustrating.

But alas, I can always come here to remind me.

Harvey

Gray Cargill February 19, 2012 at 8:41 pm

Welcome, Diane! Wow, I’m sorry to hear that about the Disboards. I’ve never seen anything like that over there, but then, I’m only over there when I’m planning a trip myself. I guess when you get a bunch of different personalities together online, things like that can happen. I don’t know if they moderate the boards over there, but I’m guessing not if they allow that sort of thing to happen. Sounds like you’re extraverted enough to make lots of friends while you’re there anyway. Good for you. Have a great time!

Diane H. February 19, 2012 at 6:20 pm

hello Everyone,

Just wanted to say, I will be going on my first solo trip this coming Sat! Five nights, Value Movies Resort, Dining and Park Hopper. I did feel for a little while that going without my kids was the same as leaving a part of my own body behind but I don’t feel that way now. They’re bigger now and I promised to hunt for hidden Mickeys and take lots of pics. They love me and want this for me.

FYI I joined the Disboards forums last week and hated it. I stumbled on to a Park Pet Peeves thread and it was horrible. I got my butt chewed for telling them they were whiners and then got my feelings hurt. HATED IT! Any way for those of you still on the fence about going, I’ll let you know how it went. I have one reservation for dinner for Fantasmic. I enjoy talking to people so I’m not worried about to much. I will never understand why people are so mean to eachother, it just breaks my heart.

Gray February 19, 2012 at 9:33 am

I wouldn’t worry about checking prices, Shaz, until you’re ready for the trip. A lot can change between now and then in terms of cheapest flights and budget-friendly lodging. When it comes to researching park tickets (or anything else, for that matter, where you’re looking for bang for your buck at Disney), I highly recommend heading on over to Mousesavers.com. She’s got tons of information about the different ticket and hotel options and also announces when Disney has free dining and things like that. Pretty much everything I learned about saving money at Disney I learned from her. You should also head over to the http://www.disboards.com/ and get plugged into the Adults and Solo Travelers forum. You’ll find a lot of others there who are in the same situation you are, and you’ll be able to arrange meetups, etc. for while you’re at Disney. As for more tips for solo female travelers, keep reading this blog, you’ll see lots. If you go to the Categories drop down box on the sidebar, and click on “solo travel” you’ll be able to read back through a lot of posts specifically dealing with solo travel issues. You are not rare; there are a lot of solo female travelers out there, and many of us are over 40. Happy planning!

Shaz February 19, 2012 at 7:59 am

Hi, I am thinking of the solo trip to disney etc one day… in a few years??? i s’pose as I am only on the dole at the mo. I also have a dog so things are a bit difficult.so it will be a tight budget wondering best flight,and best park tickets? I want to go for 14 day WDW park tickets 4 theme parks and then 4 day universal tickets. but not sure which to get? hoping for a 28 day holiday. I am 41 and feel a bit rare I am wondering If you had any more tips on solo female travelling from Australia. Music resort or holiday inn resorts? which is the best resort near universal? do you think it is good to split the hotels up 2 or 3 or just stick to the one? any tips?
also is their other singles travellers that would like to catch up during the trip for dinners or seat partners? Thankyou kindly…Shaz

Jo Logan February 5, 2012 at 10:45 pm

Thanks :0)

Gray February 4, 2012 at 5:11 pm

Oh that’s too bad about the run being at the end of your trip. But there are plenty of other ways to meet people for your trip. Go to the solo and adult traveler forum at the DIS Boards and see if anyone else is going to be there when you are. New York is a terrific city for solo travelers. I’ve been there solo. Loved it. There’s so much to do, you can’t get bored.

Jo Logan February 4, 2012 at 4:59 pm

Thanks Grey…. I think it’s something I need to do not just cause of my love of travel and Disney. It gives me something to look forward to and focus on…. I’ll need to train alot… I’ve only ever run 10ks not 10 miles, but I know I’m determined so should be fine.
The run is towards the end of my 2 weeks though, which is a shame for meeting people. I think the 10 miles would be alot more difficult with bad jet lag. So I have over a week to get overthr jetlag first. I’m thinking of taking myself off to New York for a night or 2 as I’ve never been. Has anyone done New York solo?

Gray February 4, 2012 at 9:59 am

Hi, Jo – Welcome! It’s always great to hear from another Disney fan. I’m impressed that you’re doing the Tower of Terror run! No doubt you’ll meet all sorts of other fun Disney fans doing that. After reading your story, I have to say, I don’t feel you’re being selfish at all. You’re being a good role model for your kids. You’re showing that you’re independent and pursuing your own interests and moving on with your life (just as your ex seems to be doing). Perhaps when your children are older, you can all do the Tower of Terror run together as a family? In any case, I’m all for it. Have a great trip!

Jo Logan February 4, 2012 at 6:57 am

Gosh sorry that turned into an Essay!!!

Jo Logan February 4, 2012 at 6:46 am

I’m so pleased to have found your blog today VIA google. I’m a single mum of 2 beautiful kids aged 5 & 7 (my husband left me 16 months ago) I’ve been obsessed with Disney since I was just 11 and just took my 2 back to Uk for trip over Christmas to stay with my family… I’m English but married an Aussie 10 years ago and live in Melbourne Australia. On the way over I took my 2 kids to Hong Kong Disneyland for 4 nights… I was nervous doing it without another adult but LOVED the freedom to pick (with a lil influence from the lil ones) what we were going to do and when. I’ve visited different Disney parks on 10 seperate trips of different durations with different groups, eg my own parents/family, friends, partner, my own family. This trip though as a SINGLE mum was by far the best trip I’ve ever had to a Disney Park. I became one of the kids, we got up early, we’re chosen to open the gates of Disneyland and had Mickey and Minnie to ourselves for at least 5 mins in front of gates/main st station… I have wonderful pics and a certificate.
We ran around the park getting pics and hugging all the characters. Even in my 30’s I intend on staying young forever!!!
A few weeks later- the week before Christmas my brother took the 3 of us to Disneyland Paris. We loved it to despite the cold and heaps of rain. It wasn’t the same having to take his wants into consideration (became Selfish I suppose in HK) but again we had a few hours on a few of the days where he went off shopping outside Disney and we stayed and cramed in all the things he didn’t want to do.
My ex is having the kids in sep/oct Australian school holidays and I couldn’t decide what to do with myself. Then I saw the 10milers Tower of Terror run advertised for Sep 28/29th- sounds like a great fun challenge to me… So yes u guessed it…I’ve already booked my flights. I’m really nervous doing it completely alone and will miss kids and feel a lil guilty but…..
A. I Can’t really afford flights for all 3 of us. Its already cost $1600 for me- which is alot after a few months in Europe.
B. I’d rather take them when they’re a little older to remember.
C. They have been to LA Disneyland in 2009, Hong Kong Disneyland in both 2010 & 2011, Disneyland Paris in 2005 (my daughter only) and 2011…. I don’t think that’s classed as neglecting them???
D. Am I supposed to just sit home alone while my ex and new GF and her kids go off camping and things together???
Now I’ve justified it…. Booked flights…. Waiting to book 10mile run (14Feb open for registration)… I just need to book accomodation… Pref with free shuttles as last time I drove in USA I managed to stall an automatic on The Strip in Las Vegas…. Don’t ask, really it’s only possible if u are me!!!!
Any advise on where to stay… Prob trying to budget but want somewhere I might meet other single travellers… I haven’t travelled solo since I backpacked Australia in 1999 and look where that landed me!!!!

webe February 2, 2012 at 8:37 am

I too had a lot of childhood vacations there, but we went about 10 times in the past 15 years. I guess maybe i’m facing my fears about all my memories @ Disney being tied to her and wanting to take that next step to rebuilding my life with new memories and allow healing to take place. Plus I’ve never been during Star Wars Weekends so this would be a chance to create some new memories of my own

Diane Holland January 31, 2012 at 12:25 pm

Webe,

My heart goes out to you and also the faith that no matter the circumstances, you will find that you’re having a pretty darn good time anyway. I’m just curious though, why Disney World? I mean, I know why I do it, as I have already said, but is it the same way for you? Sentimental reasons or the fascination of it all, the memories? Just curious, I’m divorced as well, seems to be a common thread, but my memories of Disney are of my childhood and I just love going back to that special place and yes, for me it is an escape from an extremely stressful life.

Harvey Stone January 31, 2012 at 11:17 am

Hi Webe,

My first trip to WDW was with my wife and the kids. The second trip was with the EX-wife and the kids (yes, same woman – long story), and the last time was with just my daughter. The first second trip was a gift from The Childrens’ Wish Foundation – similar to Make-a-Wish, Rainbow Society, etc., so we suffered through some awkward moments the second time, for the sake of my son’s wish.

The third trip was different, obviously. But I found myself RECALLING memories, not RELIVING them. I found it almost comforting to know that yes, there was something missing, but that this visit was for my daughter, and it was all about her experience there that time. And we both enjoyed those memories.

Now I am planning a fourth trip – this time just for me. I’m looking forward to it. I’ve had a horrific couple of years dealing with the kids’ health, and this trip is meant to be an escape for me. A break from the madness. Yes, there will be memories of previous visits and emotional times, I know. But what I will do, and my advice to you, is to let this visit be for you, and all about you.

Create some time to do some things you didn’t ordinarily do but wanted to. Go to different places and see new things. And when you are reminded of her smile, smile too. I’ve made it sound easy, I know. But, my advice: Let this be an escape for you. Let this be about you.

I hope I have helped.

Harvey

Gray January 31, 2012 at 11:11 am

Hi, webe – I’m so sorry to hear about your divorce. I know that can be pretty crushing. I think you’ve made a good decision to go during Star Wars Weekend. I highly recommend heading on over to the DIS forums to start connecting with other Disney fans who may be going the same weekend. If you can make some new friends to meet up with, it should be a lot more fun for you. Are you on Twitter? There are a lot of Disney fans there, too. I imagine some of them may also be planning on going that weekend. Good luck to you!

webe January 31, 2012 at 10:36 am

This will be my first solo Disney Trip in May. I’m going through a horrific divorce and not sure how I am going to handle seeing all the places me and my wife enjoyed together. So i’ve decided to go during Star Wars weekends. I think since it’s a themed weekend, it’s a chance to build new memories of my own.
I’ll probably stay away from the night time parades. I just dont think the lights would shine as brightly without her smile there. Hopefully with it being about 100 days away, some healing will take place by then. I’m kind of dreading going somewhere with such deep memories as a couple, but also I feel that it may be fairly therapeutic as well.
Has anyone else been to Disney after a divorce ? would appreciate any suggestions

Gray January 15, 2012 at 11:55 am

Sounds like you’re going to see a lot on this trip, Harvey! The Keys should be beautiful.

Harvey Stone January 14, 2012 at 2:27 pm

What?! Now I’ve got to keep my “crazy” in check? Ummm, I didn’t sign up for that. I’m going all-out un-Canadian.

In all seriousness though, I used to be more nervous about going solo at Disney. More nervous than Mike Tyson at a spelling bee. But, it’ll be good. I’m finally going to Medeival Times, Cape Canaveral, and the Keys. And going to WDW, of course. If there’s time.

Gray Cargill January 13, 2012 at 6:07 pm

You raise a good point, Harvey–as long as you’re a well-behaved solo you probably won’t be noticed. It’s only if you start doing crazy things that will get you noticed! :-)

Harvey Stone January 13, 2012 at 4:39 pm

Thinking of it now, I realize I hardly noticed anyone specifically. It was usually the mega-groups with matching t-shirts, the screaming-banshee toddlers, and the like, that got noticed. I remember seeing a few single-riders jumping the queue, and thinking only that the rest of his/her group was already inside, or elsewhere in the park.

The sense we are out-of-place as solos is purely self-conscious. That’s my theory, and I’m sticking to it.

Sign me,
Your Friendly Canadian Neighbor

Gray Cargill January 13, 2012 at 6:55 am

Maybe people feel they need to “muster courage” because they think they might be lonely? Otherwise, I agree, Brad. 99.99% of the time, people aren’t even going to notice that you’re alone, so there’s no need to be self-conscious. Just have fun!

Brad January 13, 2012 at 12:34 am

What you’ve posted makes sense because who can see all that they want to at Disney World when you make allowances for everyone in your group. I’m the only one of my friends who haven’t “outgrown” theme parks and football, and that includes one older teen. It sucks to be an adult sometimes.

So why do I feel like I would have to “muster courage” as others have said to make the trip solo? Do people really focus in with a laser-like stare on anyone walking about the park by themselves and wonder what’s wrong with them? I think not as I usually only notice the people I’m there with, and don’t even really see the crowd. Glad to see it’s really no big deal.

Diane Holland January 7, 2012 at 8:23 pm

Harvey, what you said was brilliant, witty, and had just enough humility to protect it from being, oh I don’t know, less than polite maybe. Anyway, on the subject of WDW and Disneyland and for that matter Walt himself, there are the people that “get it” and the people that don’t. I’ve seen some bios on Walt Disney and read books about the Parks and he was such a genius and ahead of his time. He was such a wonderful family man to his wife and 2 daughters and seemed always so humble. When I enter WDW via the Magical Express from the airport – that’s it! I leave my stress and worries behind and allow myself to be swept away in everything, and for that gift I am willing to spend the money. I just took my sons in Dec. before the craziness of the crowds hit and it was heavenly. I cried at Fantasmic, Illuminations and the Christmas show at MK. My boys just smile and allow me those moments. (they better!) I also am moved by the story of how Magic Kingdom was finished. You know Walt passed away and was not able to see it finished but his brother Roy who had wanted to retire decided to take it over and then he died 2 months after it was completed. It is Roy sitting on the bench with Minnie at the entrance of Main Street although they seem to move it around a bit.

Harvey, I’ll be at Mama Mia’s at 3:15 for a late lunch as part of the Fantasmic Package on March 3 Sat.. I’ll be wearing my lanyard full of pins!! If your in The World stop by.

Gray January 7, 2012 at 8:03 pm

@Harvey – Since ronnie obviously posted to provoke a response from somebody, I’ll let it slide this time. But yes, how very unCanadian of you. I have a little French Canadian in me, so I feel your pain. ;-)

Harvey Stone January 7, 2012 at 5:32 pm

Hi Gray – I thought I might have overstepped my bounds on that little rant – how un-Canadian of me! I hope that you and other serious readers weren’t put off. There! Now, that’s more Canadian of me.

Like Diane above, I’ll be going for the extra leap-day. Bought new luggage yesterday, which brings me right up to the front of the 21st Century! My old luggage was suitable only if getting to Disney by wagon train.

Thanks for the enthusiasm!

Gray January 7, 2012 at 10:38 am

@Harvey – Well said. When’s your trip coming up? Must be soon, right?
@Diane – You are not “Goofy” at all. After all, there’s only one Goofy. ;-) Seriously, though, I’m so glad to have been of help. You’re going to have a great time.

Diane Holland January 6, 2012 at 10:35 pm

I’m so happy to have stumbled onto this site. Since 2008, I have been 4 times with my 2 boys and their dad, or whoever I can get to go and now everyone is “burned out” on Disney except me. It sure will be cheaper to go alone! Who wants to pay for 2 kids who don’t want to be there! I was thinking I might be crazy wanting to go alone. I have never gone anywhere without my children.

I am planning to get in on the “One More Disney Day” special and go March 2 for 4 or 5 days. Thanks to you all for helping me feel a little less “Goofy”. (pun intended)

Sincerely,

Diane

Harvey Stone January 6, 2012 at 9:21 pm

@ ronnie: Pretty strong words for a young pup.

Let me ask you this, ronnie: First, I’ll assume that, at your young age, most of your 18 visits were on someone else’s dime – the “other people” you mention. I will wager dollars to donuts (Krispy Kreme, of course) that at least ONE of your way-payers (mom and/or dad) had thought at least once while YOU were there: “If only I didn’t have this snot-nosed, ungrateful, whiney, bratty, little ankle-weight hanging on me and tugging at my wallet”.

I’ve been to Disney a mere THREE times in my 47 years, and have been grateful for every one of them. I always bowed to pressure from the vocal majority about what THEY want to do, and not once, not ONCE ronnie, did it occur to any of them, that perhaps DAD would like to do something. Let’s ask him. NOT. And this is why, you see, the world does not revolve around YOU and what YOU want. If I have to go solo in order to get some peace, and do what I’ve always missed out on before, then I’m going solo!

ronnie. December 28, 2011 at 5:49 pm

im 21 years young. i have been to Disney world about 18 times, all with other people. who ever wrote this does not know what their talking about. those are the worst top 10 reasons to go alone. if any of you disney lovers go alone, we all know that on that vacation, you have to think about having someone with you atleast once while you are there. lets face it, its a family vacation spot.

Gray December 20, 2011 at 6:46 am

Oh, I see, Harvey. I can totally relate to that. Have a great time, then!

Harvey Stone December 20, 2011 at 12:01 am

Again, great reply!

Medieval Times is one of those things I never got to do in three trips to Orlando, so it’s a must-do for me. I live in Canada, and there is nothing like MT anywhere close to here. HolyLand, Gatorland, too. And I’d love to find some great magic shows (the family never would let me drag ‘em to a magic show).

I am mere inches away from booking my flights!!!

Gray December 17, 2011 at 8:31 am

You can always skip Medieval Times if you can’t pull together a group off Disney message forums. But definitely don’t skip Disney World. Dining solo there is not bad at all. Disney trains its workers to give great customer service. I’ve always been treated exceptionally well. The other “tricks” you might try to make it easier is dining at bars (where you can chat with other diners, or at least the bartender)–Downtown Disney has a lot of options like this, or you could try BlueZoo, the Wave, Il Mulino, ESPN Zone, Big River Grille, etc.–and/or go to a restaurant with a view–at Coral Reef, you can spend your time watching the fish swim around in the aquarium, at Chefs De France, you can ask for a window table and people-watch, or if you time it right, you can book a restaurant that has a great view of the fireworks. As far as being there for a week–that’s usually how long I’m there, and believe me, it goes by FAST. There’s so much to do, you won’t be bored.

Harvey Stone December 16, 2011 at 11:22 pm

Thanks for the reply, Gray. I’m still waffling on going there, but getting closer to deciding. I have no problem meeting new people (an extreeeeemely short memory guarantees it!), but I guess it’s the set-up at Medeival Times – it’s just made for couples or groups, I think.

Also, solo meals would get a bit old after awhile. I am planning a week-long trip. Encourage me, Gray. ENCOURAGE ME!!!

Gray November 16, 2011 at 8:50 pm

Interesting question, Harvey. I haven’t been to Medieval Times, though I get the gist. If it’s anything like the Tournament of Kings at Excalibur in Vegas, I probably wouldn’t do it–not because of being alone, but because of the whole “eating with your hands” thing. :-) The equivalent for me is Ohana. Just can’t imagine dining there alone. You could always try to set up a meetup on one of the Disney message forums with other visitors so you have a group to go with–and the bonus would be that you’d meet new people!

Harvey Stone November 16, 2011 at 7:29 pm

OK, so I can buy into the WDW solo idea (I’ve been three times with the young ‘uns and NEVER got to do what I wanted), but, what about things like Medieval Times? A table for one there (or similar places) seems odd.

Gray November 16, 2011 at 6:43 pm

Hi, Suzanne,

Actually most of the rooms hold a maximum of 4 people, but you can book any room for a solo. So stay at whatever resort appeals to you the most, and enjoy!

Suzanne Goodwin November 16, 2011 at 5:44 pm

I am looking for recommendations on wdw resort for solo travelers, most of the rooms hold a min of 4.

Gray November 6, 2011 at 8:38 pm

Hi, Kathy! You may not get any responses on a blog post like this. Are you on Facebook? I can repost your question to my SoloFriendly Facebook page if you like. Just let me know.

Kathy November 6, 2011 at 10:22 am

Hi,

Is anyone going to the D23 Event in December at Disney World.? Part of the fun will be going inside the castle room. My husband is working that weekend and he is sending me solo as my early Christmas present.

Gray October 16, 2011 at 7:31 am

Not really. I’ve found all of Disney World to be a pretty fun place to hang out. Single rider lines, counter seating, all of the stuff I mention above are perks of going solo. So just go and have fun!

MILE October 15, 2011 at 6:52 pm

OH! Thanks God I found this page, I used to travel alone, but being honest was very intimidated about going to Disney World by my own, now you have give me the strenght I was missing.
Any particular recommendations?

Gray September 26, 2011 at 11:11 am

Isn’t it awesome, June? Have a great trip!

June Buck September 26, 2011 at 7:41 am

I have been traveling to WDW solo for about 3 yrs . I feel like i reaaly have a vacation when I am by myself. I do enjoy going with others but going solo really enables me to set my own pace, ride what I want, and eat what and when I want. I too have met some great people. When fols at home say don’t you get bored not having any one to talk to. I simply tell them if you stand in line with all these other people you shoulf be able to strike up a conversation with some one. I am leaving for 6 days of Disney Magic tomorrow. Yes solo. Countin the hours yeah!!!

Gray September 15, 2011 at 5:42 pm

I know, Natalie. Wouldn’t it be great if they all had single rider lines? :-)

Natalie September 15, 2011 at 4:50 pm

I wasn’t aware of the Single Rider Lines. What a great idea! Too bad there’s only a handful of them…

Gray Cargill August 28, 2011 at 5:33 pm

I’m so pleased you found it, Christine! I didn’t know you could take the train to Orlando. Cool. You are going to LOVE WDW solo–this trip is all about YOU. Enjoy it!

Christine August 28, 2011 at 4:41 pm

OMGosh! I am so pleased to have found this blog! I leave for my first ever solo trip to WDW….well its my first solo vacation anywhere! I am making an adventure out of it and taking the train. I am pretty excited but also a bit intimidated. I have been to WDW more times than I remember! LOL but never alone. Ok….I worked there for a while in 2007 and went alone when I had free time before or after work..but that is it!
Thanks for writing this, it has relieved a little of my anxiety!

Gray July 11, 2011 at 7:38 pm

You’re going to have a blast, Lotokids!

Lotokids July 11, 2011 at 7:03 pm

Well this was a cool post to read because my husband and I will be in Orlando and staying at the Animal Kingdom Lodge in October. He will be attending Gartner and I will be flying solo while he is at the conference. I have been debating if I want to go park hopping alone and had recently decided that I think I need at least a three day park hopper. Friday my husband will get to go with me but at least two other days to roam around and find the good stuff. I figure I need some time to explore the resort too. Thanks for the great post.

Gray July 10, 2011 at 9:41 am

Sweet! Thanks for sharing that story, JoAnn. Yet another great reason to be solo at WDW. :-)

JoAnn July 10, 2011 at 9:07 am

I want to add another benefit to item #2. You may be able to get in line for character pictures even if the line is “closed”.

One morning my friends wanted to relax by the pool, so I went solo to Disney’s Hollywood Studios to see the Rope Drop. After the Rope Drop, I got in line to get pictures with the characters. I went over to get my picture taken with Chip and Dale, and the Cast Member told me the last family in line was the last for the pictures. I was ready to move on and see some other areas of the park when she asked if I was by myself. When I told her I was, she let me get in line.

Gray June 3, 2011 at 11:47 am

That sounds like a good start, JoAnn! You kind of had the best of both worlds–some time with friends and some time to enjoy alone.

JoAnn May 30, 2011 at 8:33 pm

I haven’t done a complete Disney trip on my own. I met some friends there last year. I spent a couple of days on my own so I could attend the Food & Wine Festival. They weren’t able to go any earlier and were traveling to Orlando on the last day of the festival. I had my own room so we weren’t together 24 hours a day. I ventured off on my own a couple of times during the trip when I wanted to do something they didn’t. I would considering take a trip there on my own someday.

Lape April 13, 2011 at 12:25 pm

Hi Gray. One of my favourite things about this post is the captions you wrote for some of the pictures. They made me smile. I’ve linked to this post on my blog. Thanks for writing it.

Gray April 13, 2011 at 1:29 pm

Thanks, Lape, I’m glad you enjoyed it! Just one clarification, though: Disney World is not part of Disneyland. Disneyland is in California, while Disney World is in Orlando, Florida. When I write about Disney World, I’m writing about the Orlando parks.

Scooke9 April 1, 2011 at 2:15 am

You can dart around all the strollers! I went solo in 2009 and got all 4 parks done in 2 days!!!

Gray April 1, 2011 at 10:58 am

Wow, that’s a brutal schedule. You must have a lot of energy!

flyer32 March 27, 2011 at 2:50 pm

This solidifies it, I am going to go on a solo trip. I have always wanted to go on a solo trip, a chance to be “selfish” and do what I want to do, but was concerned about being by myself and getting bored. I am going to give it a go this October and just go enjoy some me time!!!

Gray March 27, 2011 at 3:15 pm

Well, my work here is done then. :-) I think you’ll love your solo trip. The “me time” is so important.

Ian January 20, 2011 at 1:28 pm

Traveling solo can be fun for me but not in Disney. I have kids and no way I am going to Disney Alone. Actually, this year my wife and I are planning to bring the kids this summer. It is surprise vacation trip for them that I am sure they will love.

Lisafroelich January 19, 2011 at 4:00 am

I took my first ever solo trip in July. I got custody of the Disney Vacation Club in the divorce and the kids were on a mission trip so I decided to spend 3 days relaxing and resort hopping. I discovered a nature trail at Saratoga Springs with beautiful flowers that isn’t marked. I asked a cast member about it and he told me that it was never marked. It is just a pleasant surprise for curious resort guests.

Gray January 19, 2011 at 11:15 am

Outstanding! That’s a cool find. Did you enjoy being solo at Disney?

Jacquelinexx3 January 12, 2011 at 2:28 am

Thank you. I’ve been in Florida for two weeks and the whole time all I’ve wanted to do was go to Disney. I have a few days left of my vacation and everyone keeps telling me to go alone. This motivated me. I really cannot thank you enough. I’ve been completely homesick and being able to go to my favorite place is definitely easing my mind. Thank you!

SoloFriendly January 12, 2011 at 2:53 am

Oh, I’m so glad to have helped. I’m sorry to hear the rest of your vacation hasn’t been ideal, though. I hope Disney makes up for it! Have fun!!

Jacquelinexx3 January 12, 2011 at 3:07 pm

Thanks- I’m getting ready to leave now!

The Tony January 1, 2011 at 2:43 am

I like how when Im alone I get the chance to talk to people rather then just talking to the people in my group. I had a nice conversation with a guy on the Magical Express and found out we had alot in common. We even ran into each other 3 days later at Downtown Disney. When i’m in a group i also miss out on alot of the magic the Cast Members themselves bring.

SoloFriendly January 2, 2011 at 5:17 pm

Yes, exactly! It’s cool to meet other people, but when you’re focused on the people you’re traveling with, you tend not to as much.

Jiyeon Juno Kim December 13, 2010 at 12:50 pm

“Because you can!” Oh yes. so true. I like the idea that someone takes a photo of you. It’s rare! :) I feel sometimes ‘I’m so looser’ -in a funny way. Because most of my photos of myself include a part of my arm!! :D hahaha Funny!

SoloFriendly December 14, 2010 at 12:25 am

I have a terrible time taking pictures of myself. I can never seem to get my arm far enough away from my body. It makes my face look huge. :-)

Alicia December 6, 2010 at 5:36 am

I never get to travel alone when it comes to Disney World. Disney World is my kids’ thing and I will never get to miss a chance to go there without them. Although traveling Sole could also be cool and fun because it will be all about me and my husband and without the kids but I will do that in a different trip except for Disney.

They call me Belle October 13, 2010 at 3:00 pm

I actually worked for Disney World, and on my days off, often ended up at the parks. Sometimes with friends, sometimes solo. One of my favorite things to do was go to Epcot, sit in Italy with a glass of wine, and people watch. Couldn’t do that with other people in tow

Anonymous October 13, 2010 at 5:02 pm

Yes! People-watching is one of my favorite solo travel activites, but you can’t really do it with other people.

Islandmomma September 12, 2010 at 5:00 pm

I am a HUGE Disney fan, but never, ever thought of going solo. I have two adult sons, and one of them loves Disney as much as I do, so in recent years I didn’t have a problem in finding someone to go with (he’s dragged his girlfriends along too!), but, of course, now he’s working and I’m just about retired I have much more free time than he does. I was thinking recently that I’d have to wait for the grandchildren for the next visit……but maybe not! I have to say though. After so many memorable visits I wonder what it would be like to do stuff and not be able to share it. Sometimes we’d go our own ways, but then there was lots to talk about in the evening. Definite food for thought though! Thanks!

Anonymous September 12, 2010 at 8:05 pm

Islandmomma, it is definitely a different experience going to Disney solo, but it can be wonderful in a self-indulgent way. You don’t have to stay solo the whole time you’re there. There’s a whole online Disney community where you can find other folks who will be traveling there at the same time you are, and if you become online friends ahead of time, you can try to schedule some meals or get-togethers.

Ilive2travel6 February 5, 2011 at 2:06 pm

I have the same problem as you. My daughter is grown and has no desire to go to Disney anymore and I have no grand kids yet! I am a Disney lover and try to go as often as I can. I live on Long Island and am looking for someone to share my love of Disney with. My husband does not fly and doesn’t mind when I travel without him . I am thinking about going solo for the first time this fall. I love Disney all dressed up for Halloween and have even dressed up for the costume party. I am on Face book under Randi Ribarich

Ktonthenet September 9, 2010 at 2:27 pm

Loved this! I’ve travelled solo to WDW many many times over the last 20 years – my other half just doesn’t want to go, so this is MY time, we make other times for each other. I’ve seen many arguments there too and I love to be able to do what I want, when I want and just enjoy myself without any demands. I love the sound of the Monorail crawl – I’ve not done that. I will now! WDW is very easy to visit on your own – you can be left alone as little or as much as you wish. You can rush around and you can sit with a cocktail and a good book. And noone’s going to roll their eyes if I want to spend an entire day on Soarin. I’ve very glad I found the Blog Carnival :)

Anonymous September 9, 2010 at 5:09 pm

Thanks so much for your comment! I’m glad you liked it. Yeah, isn’t it fun to go to WDW alone?

Jerseyleo July 14, 2010 at 1:08 am

Thank you for your assistance and your Disney knowledge! :)

SoloFriendly July 11, 2010 at 5:04 pm

There aren't really any “nightclubs” at Disney, but there are some nice nightspots–House of Blues sometimes has live music, as does Raglan Road (both in Downtown Disney)–and possibly Bongos, but don't quote me on that. Jellyrolls dueling piano bar on the Boardwalk is a ton of fun. There's the Atlantic Dance Club on the Boardwalk, but I'm not sure when it's open. I think oftentimes it gets booked for private groups. Rix Lounge at Coronado Springs is the most Vegas-looking lounge on Disney property, but can be either filled with conventioneers or deadsville (which is too bad).

Jerseyleo July 10, 2010 at 7:17 pm

Thank you.

Quickly, any suggestions for nightclubs on the Disney properties?

As Pleasure Island (remember Manaquins? – many Cast Members went there as well) has been closed, I'm not too sure where the “hot spot” to go is. ???

SoloFriendly July 10, 2010 at 4:46 pm

Thanks, Jerseyleo! Sorry I didn't respond sooner, Internet is down at my house. I had to come into work to access it. Glad you found a place to stay! Of the Values, I'd say you chose the right one. I like the Moderates myself. You might try Coronado Springs in the future–it gets a lot of conferences, so more adults/fewer kids and the rooms feel like Deluxe for a Moderate price. Enjoy your trip!

Jerseyleo July 10, 2010 at 3:10 am

By the way…GREAT blog/website! Just finished reading through several pages and received some wonderful advice! And I do have an answer to my original question…staying at Pop Century. :) Thanks! :)

Jerseyleo July 9, 2010 at 10:09 pm

Hi. I'm trying to book a solo Disney World vacation as I type. I'll be doing it through the Disney reservations.go website. Since I won't be renting a car, it makes it easier to travel back and forth through their shuttles.

My main question is, which resort is best for a solo traveler? I was thinking either the Pop or Music Resorts but then again, I was thinking the Grand Floridian. I'm a guy in my late 30's who just wants to go have some fun. Any suggestions?

SoloFriendly April 27, 2010 at 9:03 pm

Thank you very much, rileyse! And I absolutely agree with your additional reasons for a solo trip to WDW. Have a terrific time next week! I'm envious.

rileyse April 27, 2010 at 6:45 pm

I love to travel, either solo or with friends. I have traveled to WDW alone the last several years, and it is a real pleasure. In addition to the main reasons, which you mentioned, I would add relative safety, ease of getting around, and the wide variety of things to do (from visiting the parks, to sitting by the pool, to shopping, having tea at the Grand Floridian, etc). In fact, I leave next week for another 5 night visit. I just found your web site and I am really enjoying it.

ShannonOD April 11, 2010 at 5:57 pm

Oh man, let's not even **talk** about the traffic! :-)

SoloFriendly April 11, 2010 at 4:04 pm

That, and I imagine the traffic must get insane at times.

ShannonOD April 11, 2010 at 3:14 pm

Nah, I'm in the much smaller Florida bloggers club ;-) I went to college in
Orlando though, so the theme parks were def a *thing* we all did at the
time. It's a blessing and curse being that close though – easier to get
jaded by the Disney tourists! :-)

SoloFriendly April 11, 2010 at 2:44 pm

Thanks, Hedy!

SoloFriendly April 11, 2010 at 2:44 pm

I didn't know you lived in Orlando, Shannon. For some reason, I thought you were part of the Canadian Club of travel bloggers. :-) Maybe Bixie's friends aren't as available for outings as yours are? I know with my friends, we all have such busy lives, we pretty much have to book appointments with each other weeks in advance when we want to hang out. I so envy all of you who live close to WDW and have season passes. That must be awesome.

ShannonOD April 11, 2010 at 2:04 pm

I think it's interesting that Bixie would go alone – I also live in Orlando (when Im not on the road) and yet I definitely make it an outing with friends…normally as off-season as possible…have never considered doing the theme parks solo since we all have season passes! Food for thought though, food for thought :-)

SoloFriendly April 6, 2010 at 1:30 am

Thanks for your comment, asledz. You probably represent the majority opinion on travel to Disney. I'm glad you'd be open to a solo trip to Disney; you never know when the opportunity will arise!

asledz April 5, 2010 at 1:28 pm

I'm 24 and while I went to Disney a few times as a kid, its in my 20s where I've gone the most! (and none of the trips were with children). My favourite trips are alone with my bf (who doesn't love Disney as much as me, but still enjoys it) or with my best friend who loves Disney even MORE than me if anything. I would go alone for sure if the opportunity ever presented itself, but I would rather go with my friend.

Hedy April 2, 2010 at 12:04 am

Wow, great post. I love solo treks to Walt Disney World, and agree with all your points.

SoloFriendly April 1, 2010 at 9:00 pm

Thanks very much, I'm glad you liked it. Thanks for connecting here and on Twitter!

drtigger April 1, 2010 at 5:16 pm

OMG..I agree 100%. After numerous times to WDW with “friends” I now want to go it alone. I get to do what I want to do, when I want too. I thank goodness I found Twitter, to be in touch with so many others who like Disney like I do and now this. It's wonderful. Never used Photopass much, but that changes in May when I come down.
Thanks so much,
TTFN

SoloFriendly March 31, 2010 at 9:54 pm

Hi, Emily! Yeah, Disney is one of those places that people think you can only go with your family, but that's definitely not true. You'd be surprised how many couples without kids go, as well as solo adults.

Emily @ Maiden Voyage March 31, 2010 at 7:19 pm

I would have never even considered traveling to Disney World alone, but your list is pretty darn convincing! I was there so long ago that I forgot they had a line for singles. And your'e totally right — after a day full of noise and kids and exploring, it would be really nice to go back to a quiet room all by yourself. I went as a kid with my two siblings, and I would have killed for some peace and quiet!

SoloFriendly March 31, 2010 at 6:55 pm

Then my work here is almost done. Mwahaha.
The Photopass Photographers typically take photos with their cameras. Here's how Photopass works: http://allears.net/tp/ppass.htm
But if you're cheap (like me!) and you don't want to pay to purchase pics of yourself in the parks, you can ask them to use your own camera to take your picture. They're happy to oblige.

Candice March 31, 2010 at 6:45 pm

You really, really make me wanna go to Disney World. The photographers…so they just take YOUR camera and take pics with it? Genius!

SoloFriendly March 31, 2010 at 4:04 pm

See, I knew we were kindred spirits, Christine!

grrrltraveler March 31, 2010 at 12:32 pm

HA HA… Glad you did this, Gray! I came inches close to entering one of Daegu's amusement parks when I missed meeting a group of expats… inches. The kid in me was very tempted to go in alone. Why? To jump on any, every or the same ride over & over again without having to share my time w/ what others want to go on. I love my park rides.

SoloFriendly March 30, 2010 at 11:43 pm

Define “big rides,” Cailin. They did go on some rides, right? At least the tame ones like Spaceship Earth? How'd you like RNR? I always swore I'd never go on a coaster that went upside down, but I figured if I couldn't see it happening, it didn't count. Worked like a charm. :-)

Cailin March 30, 2010 at 10:35 pm

I was at Disney in 2000 and my family refused to go on any big rides so I went on the Rockin' Roller Coaster by myself too! :)

SoloFriendly March 30, 2010 at 4:26 pm

Oh, I don't know, I bet somebody will have a reason I didn't think of.

Jacquelinexx3 January 12, 2011 at 2:34 am

I’m 22 and the only thing I’ve ever wanted to do was the Mickey search. We go every year but my family never does it- I’m going to do this solo. I’m kinda psyched about this because the next time I do go with my family I’ll be able to point out a few.

SoloFriendly January 12, 2011 at 2:52 am

Aha! I knew someone would think of something new: Do the things your family doesn’t want to do! Go for it, Jacqueline!

SoloFriendly March 30, 2010 at 4:25 pm

You are so lucky to live so close to WDW! I would be there every weekend.

Michele March 30, 2010 at 3:12 pm

I think you hit on all of them! :)

Bixie23 March 30, 2010 at 2:12 pm

These are some of the many reasons I visit Disney World solo. I live in Orlando and have a family, but sometimes I have time on my own to kill and for me, there is no better place than Disney to do it! The reactions from friends when I tell them, though, is always interesting.

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