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Your Disney World Reverse Bucket List

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Nearly everyone is familiar with the concept of a “Bucket List;” it’s a to-do list of things you want to accomplish before you die, or “kick the bucket.” A bucket list typically includes aspirational items (travel to Paris), completist tasks (visit every major league baseball park), physical challenges (run a marathon) or the like. These are positive goal-worthy items.

Is the Turkey Leg a must-do or a never-do for you?
Is the Turkey Leg a must-do or a never-do for you?

I’ve recently been introduced to the concept of the “Reverse Bucket List” – things you would “rather die than do,” negative items to be avoided at all costs. I’m a New Yorker, so my Reverse Bucket List at home includes items like driving in Manhattan (public transportation is my friend), posing with a Times Square Elmo (ick), or waiting in line for hours for a cronut (just why?). I never want to do any of those things.

Many Disney Parks fans (of which I am one) discuss their Disney bucket lists. Some things I’ve seen frequently mentioned include:

  • Staying at a Deluxe level resort suite
  • Visiting all the Disney theme parks worldwide
  • Dining at Victoria & Alberts
  • Touring with a VIP guide
  • Having a Disney wedding
  • Buying/using the Platinum Dining Plan

Those are all worthy ambitions. But what I want to know about here is your Disney Reverse Bucket List. What are the Disney things that you vow never to do, or never to do again, because they are too upsetting, expensive, scary, or otherwise yucky.

Please bear in mind that Bucket Lists and Reverse Bucket Lists are personal, reflecting your own background, interests, or fears. For example, I love a good Disney Parks turkey leg, but I know several people who would put that at the top of their Reverse List. Please be respectful of others’ opinions.

To get things started, I’ll offer up some of my Disney Reverse Bucket List items.

  • Spending New Years Eve in the Magic Kingdom (too much of a muchness for me)
  • Riding Mission Space Orange (I am queasy just thinking about it)
  • Eating cotton candy or anything cotton candy flavored
  • Spending $4.00 for a bottle of water
  • Waiting more than 30 minutes for any stand-by line that doesn’t have Neil Patrick Harris at the end of it.

So tell me, what’s on YOUR Disney World Reverse Bucket List? Where is your line is the sand? What do you vow to never do at a Disney park?

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Erin Foster

Erin Foster is an original member of the Walt Disney World Moms Panel (now PlanDisney), a regular contributor to TouringPlans.com, and co-author of The Unofficial Guide to Disney Cruise Line. She's been to WDW, DL, DL Paris, Hong Kong Disneyland, Aulani, DVC Vero Beach, and DVC Hilton Head. She's a Platinum DCL cruiser and veteran of 10 Adventures by Disney trips. Erin lives near New York City, where she can often be found indulging in her other obsession - Broadway theater.

44 thoughts on “Your Disney World Reverse Bucket List

  • 1. Driving to the Magic Kingdom on July 4th at 10am thinking “This should be early enough to get in to see the fireworks.”

    2. Planning on Toy Story Midway Mania at 2pm on Dec 25th thinking “Everyone will be at the Magic Kingdom so the line won’t be that bad.”

    3. Parking hopping from the Magic Kingdom to Animal Kingdom at 4pm thinking “all the parks are open late.”

    4. Driving from an off-site hotel that brags about being 5 miles from Disney World and thinking “We’ll be walking up Main Street USA in 10 minutes.”

    5. Getting to the Magic Kingdom at 9:15am thinking “we are early enough that we won’t have to wait to get on the 7 Dwarfs Mine Train.”

  • 1. Any park or resort overrun with cheerleaders.
    2. Tony’s Restaurant and the MK. Yes, the food is as bland and boring as everyone says.
    3. Waiting in any line for a character (DCL has spoiled us forever on this)
    4. Tea Cups. Just, no.
    5. Jungle Cruise. (Jingle Cruise was okay, though)
    6. Stitch’s Great Escape. Not worthy of its MK location.
    7. Innovations. (Except for Sum of All Thrills)
    8. Haunted Mansion (Yes, I know this is bordering on sacrilege, but I’ve just never really enjoyed it)
    9. Osborne Family Spectacle of Lights. (Yes, I know its gone. It was, IMO, the epitome of trashy Christmas exterior house decorations.)
    6. Did I mention the presence of cheerleaders anywhere? Avoid them like the noisy, rude plague they are.

    • Addendum… should be Tony’s Restaurant AT the MK. We love the MK!!

  • Eating the kitchen sink or indeed anything with peanut butter flavours
    Astro Orbiter (spin puke spin puke)
    Any part of Disney in heels!
    The American Adventure – sorry USA we love you but it’s really really bad

  • Just one: the mac-n-cheese dog at Restaurantosaurus. Please no, never again.

  • 1. Leave the magic kingdom after a parade or fireworks. “Get out of my way!!!” By the way the special “arcade” exit is a lifesaver.
    2. Go to the magic kingdom within 5 days of Christmas.
    3. Eat at mama melrose
    4. Take a bus right after a park closes.
    5. Eat at Tokyo dining
    6. Drink lefou’s brew
    7. Eat at nine dragons
    8. Be within 1 mile of the move it shake it celebrate it garbage
    9. Wait for the seven dwarves mine train

    Man, I really don’t like the magic kingdom. It would be great with less than 5k people, but always seems to be slammed every time I go.

  • – Leave Disney onsite or even close by offsite hotel, to visit a restaurant (or anything else) on northern stretch of International Drive. Used to be a lot less congested even about 10 years ago.

  • In the order that I would avoid them
    1. Astro orbiter—long wait for bad carnival ride (view isn’t enough)
    2. Tomorrowland speedway—shut it down and get Radiator springs there quick
    3. Jungle Cruise–puns predictable and too short a ride for the wait and the hype
    4. Eat at Sci-Fi theater–food not good, how about actual movies not clips
    5. Eat at Tony’s—done it twice, that was once too many
    6. Norway film–must have heard us….it gone!
    7. Peter Pan’s Flight—must not get the excitement and wait for this ride

  • Stitch’s Great Escape

  • Eat at Pecos Bill’s at high noon.
    Forget to socks for the ride home. It’s bad enough that I had to give up my flip-flop in lieu of boots, but to have to buy $12 socks in the gift shop added insult to injury.

  • 1. Riding Stich
    2. Playing the Miniature Golf
    3. Mission Space
    4. Watching China Film
    5. Watching Norway Film
    6. Christmas Day at the Magic Kingdom

    • You don’t have to worry about #5 anymore 🙁

      • Why not?

      • I think it has been removed for the new Frozen overhaul.

      • Probably a good thing!

  • I will never wait for or ride a bus at Disney, what a waist of valuable vacation time. It would be like driving a car in midtown Manhattan during Christmas week, just a totally foolish thing to do.

  • -Staying at an All Star Resort during a cheerleading competition and/or youth sports competition
    -Paying any money to eat at Hollywood and Vine
    -Having a table service meal outside within the vicinity of a dj or a dance party
    -Making all of our plans in advance through MyMagic+ as soon as the window opens and not changing anything leading up to or during the trip
    -Spending a full day in Hollywood Studios before the new additions have arrived
    -Spending a leisurely evening in World Showcase during a college spring break

    • Oh my gosh the cheerleaders had us almost crazy.

  • This is so interesting. Many of the items mentioned (Country Bears, Hall of Presidents) are among my family’s favorites.

  • – Making rope drop. It’s a vacation, relax, sleep in.
    – Turkey leg is near the top of the list too.
    – Any ride that just goes in circles. One of them and queasy is my middle name. Two are enough to ruin my day.

  • My RBL:
    – Stay at the Grand Floridian. The decor just ain’t my style. If I’m dropping monorail resort money, it’s the Poly every time (and maybe the Contemporary once).
    – Ride Dumbo, the Carpets, or the Triceratops. AstroOrbiter gets a reprieve for being higher up.
    – Eat the Pop Tart sandwich.
    – Standing room for Fantasmic.
    – Go to WDW in June, July or August

    • I agree with so much of this. I nearly added GF and thought people would think me crazy.

  • We’re about to take our 3rd trip and I learned so much on our first two. My reverse bucket list would include:

    -riding mission space orange again (I almost got sick)
    -ignoring the toll our long days and lots of walking we’re having on our kids
    -along the same lines, I’ll never rule out a stroller or wheelchair rental
    -Boma (I got so frustrated with the logistics after a long day of parks)
    -AOA LM room (there are so many bad words I use when talking about this experience)
    -plan open to close park days

    Not quite making the reverse bucket list, but close, is touring MK during AM EMH alone. It was nice to get to do what I wanted, but I missed having my H and thr kids there. They thought they were giving me a break after not really getting to do what I wanted during the trip, but it just wasn’t as fun without them.

    • Very curious about your AOA LM experience! This has always been in the maybe pile for us

      • What is AOA (art of animation??) LM?

      • The Little Mermaid section of Disney’s Art of Animation hotel.

    • Huh. I’ve only stayed at AOA LM once, and while the room is smallish, it wasn’t a bad location for the price (Disney price, that is). The CMs provided their usual outstanding service and the food court has a wide selection. Of course, our standard for room size is a cabin on one of the DCL ships, and ANY Disney hotel room beats that hands down!

  • 1. Waiting to see any character! I love when I find one with no wait but my kids and I refuse to wait in line

    2. Stitch’s great escape

    3. Mission space

    4. Hall of Presidents/universe of Energy are way too long and boring

    5. Popcorn – I can do that anywhere else

  • Sit through Country Bears again. Sit through Candlelight Procession again. Wait in line for the speedway cars again (the ride is meh, but the wait is hell on earth). Anything ESPN related. Watch the forecourt castle show. Do one of those insane waterpark water slide drops. Go to the World in the summer. Character autographs.

    • Oh gosh yes the deadly drops. Never doing those.

  • Riding Stitch’s Great Escape
    Staying at a Value resort (except AOA) (Yes, I know it sounds snobbish, but if that is my budget I’m staying off site for a better value for the $)
    Eating a Turkey Leg
    Sitting through Country Bear Jamboree again
    Missing Rope Drop
    Eat BOG lunch (I know we are the minority but we all hated the food. Maybe it has gotten better but we aren’t finding out)

  • Eating at The Plaza in MK
    Getting cut off by people not paying attention that I’m pushing a child in a stroller
    Staying at any All Star resort
    Spending EMH in Epcot WS with a small child.

    • Regarding that last one: do people get pretty rowdy? I’m planning to be in World Showcase for most of EMH one night in April, and then get in line for Test Track before the park closes. My group is going to be all grownups, so for us it actually wouldn’t be a bad thing if the WS gets kind of saucy between 9 and 11.

      • The only time (recently) we were in World Showcase for EMH, there was hardly anyone there. It was mid-September. But not rowdy at all. The Food and Wine Festival on an afternoon in November was *much* worse.

      • Haha, I bet. How much stuff is open in WS during EMH? I’m sure the various performers aren’t out that late, but are drink vendors and galleries and whatnot mostly open?

      • People are just a little rowdy. If you don’t have young kids, its no biggie but I wouldn’t stay in WS after Illuminations. I’m 31 going on 71 though! Ha!

  • Experience Stitch’s Great Escape in Magic Kingdom – what a complete waste of valuable minutes of my life! Luckily all my family hate it so we just walk on by!

  • Completely agree with standing in line for anything Frozen related! 🙂
    Hearing “Let it Go” one more time 🙂
    Inconsiderate people – there aren’t very many of these, but theres at least one every time
    Old Animatronics – I know, I’ll probably get some hate for this.. but as a 28 year old, It’s hard to sit through an attraction that has animatronics that are outdated. The new stuff they are producing is completely amazing! I just can’t wait for them to improve all of the old ones 🙂

    • YES! Country Bear Jamboree. I can’t even talk to my husband about what a waste it was because he slept through the whole thing. lol

  • Eating a turkey leg. The smell nauseates me every time someone walks by me with one.

  • Get FASTPASS for Journey into Imagination with Figment ride-never any wait! Slow ride but good to relax & cool off for a few minutes & young kids love the ride!

  • Reverse Bucket List

    Eating @ Rainforest Cafe
    Standing in line for anything Frozen
    Same-day Park Hopping

    • I wish I could put standing in line for anything Frozen on my reverse bucket list but with a five-year-old daughter it is impossible to avoid.


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