Disney Springs has often been described as a glorified shopping mall — and when you get down to it, sometimes that’s what you’re looking for. This is especially true with the shopping crowds that come out on Black Friday. Although Disney Springs may not be the first location that comes to mind for shopping crowds, there are a decent number of people who come out for this shopping holiday. Here’s our tips if you plan to be among them.
Do arrive early for some stores — but not too early.
There’s zero reason to show up before dawn to try and rope drop stores at Disney Springs. Posted hours are 10 a.m. to 11 p.m., even on Black Friday. If you know of a particular retailer that you absolutely must be first in line for, then call the store directly to see if they will plan to open early. In general, as long as you are strolling into Disney Springs around 9:30, you will find almost all stores with no wait for Black Friday crowds. The exception to this tends to be World of Disney and the LEGO Store.
Don’t expect major discounts.
Many stores actually exclude their Disney Springs locations from special deals and promotions. Verify with stores in advance if they will be participating in any sort of special Black Friday sales.
Do plan to park where you will shop the most.
Although selection of parking garages is a controversy of Disney Twitter legend, you’ll want to park based on what you where you want to shop. The Orange Garage is a great option if you intend to buy out everything at the Coca-Cola store, but if you’re buying, say, a 50 pound LEGO set, walking past the Lime Garage to get to the Orange Garage can feel like the ultimate walk of shame.
Don’t forget your annual pass, DVC membership card, Disney Visa, or anything else that might get you a discount (and don’t forget to ask if discounts are available).
Most shops are great about asking if you have various forms of cards that will provide a discount, but the biggest shopping day of the year is exhausting. Please help the cashiers out by having all cards that might provide a discount at the ready.
Do eat breakfast before you arrive.
Yes, there are a few places to grab breakfast at Disney Springs (most notably Starbucks, but also places like Earl of Sandwich and, in a pinch, a Rice Krispy treat at Goofy’s Candy Company is basically just a cereal bar, right?). Overall, breakfast offerings are slim, and lines there may be some of the longest you encounter all day.
Do follow COVID safety protocols.
These include social distancing, proper mask usage, making use of entrances and exits that are posted, and so on. By now we all know the drill, right?
Do take hydration breaks.
Yes, it is November. This is Florida. Stay hydrated.
Do pack your patience.
There will be crowds. There will be lines. There will be some people who are providing a less-than-magical vibe. Let’s be excellent to each other so that everyone can have an enjoyable day.
Black Friday is still a fairly new experience for Disney Springs, with its first year offering the Black Friday experience being 2016. Want a blast from the past? Check out this article about the first year Disney Springs was open for Black Friday in 2016 — when they had a very special offering for that year only.
Are you planning to shop at Disney Springs on Black Friday or during the holiday season? What would you want on your wish list?