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Order the 2020 Unofficial Guide to Walt Disney World Now!

Major changes for this printing of the 2020 edition include re-editing and re-organizing for easier, faster reference:

  • Each chapter now begins with a set of the most common and important questions that visitors have about Walt Disney World, and where in the chapter to find answers. For example, the “Saving Time” section shows questions such as “What is the FastPass+ ride reservation system and how do I use it? See page 64”, and “What do I do if my child is too small for a ride? See page 413”.
  • Ratings for rides, hotels, and restaurants now say whether that rating is above, below, or at average for that category. This makes it easier to identify things that are worth your time and money.
  • Each chapter’s topics are presented in their order of relevance – the most important topics come first.
  • The “Saving Time” topic is now its own chapter.
  • Similar information that once appeared in multiple chapter, such as wheelchair rental, is consolidated into one chapter. This saves almost 40 pages as compared to the 2019 edition.

Major additions and updates by chapter:

  • Introduction - Explains how to use the new book features.
  • Walt Disney World Overview - Answers frequently asked questions about what Walt Disney World is, its size, the differences between parks, and between Disney and Universal.
  • Planning Before You Leave Home – walks through the process of registering for and using Disney’s My Disney Experience website and app, including how to make restaurant and FastPass+ ride reservations before you leave home.
  • Making the Most of Your Time – Has 6 new insider tips on how to avoid lines in Walt Disney World, including how to nab hard-to-get FastPasses for popular rides.
  • Making the Most of Your Money – All-new tips on how to find the cheapest tickets for Disney World; How to decide if the Disney Dining Plan is right for you.
  • Accommodations – Coverage of Disney’s new Gran Destino Tower; all-new recommendations for money-saving family suites; where to find the best hotel discounts now.
  • Dining – The NEW best restaurants in Walt Disney World, based on 165,000 reader surveys we got in the past year; When to make dining reservations; How to make the most of the Disney Dining Plan; How Disney handles dietary restrictions and allergies.
  • Walt Disney World with Kids – The #1 most important tip to know; The top 10 rides for kids, based on their age; Where to meet the Disney characters.
  • Special Tips for Special People – How Disney accommodates people with disabilities; How to use Disney’s Disabilities Access Service (DAS); What seniors should know about visiting Walt Disney World.
  • Arriving and Getting Around – What is Disney’s Magical Express Bus Service? How to save money on car rentals; How to use the Disney Transportation System; The new Disney Skyliner gondola system.
  • The Magic Kingdom – The NEW best way to get to the park; How “rope drop” works when the park opens; The most popular and “don’t miss” rides for every age; Your best choices for FastPass+ ride reservations; How to avoid long waits in line.
  • Epcot – Big news about major construction; How to see the new Ratatouille ride without long waits in line; How “rope drop” works when the park opens; The most popular and “don’t miss” rides for every age; Your best choices for FastPass+ ride reservations.
  • Animal Kingdom - How “rope drop” works when the park opens; The most popular and “don’t miss” rides for every age; Your best choices for FastPass+ ride reservations; How to avoid long waits in line.
  • Disney’s Hollywood Studios – Reviews of the new Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge rides, restaurants, and shopping experiences; The NEW best way to get to the park with Galaxy’s Edge opens; How “rope drop” works when the park opens; The most popular and “don’t miss” rides for every age; Your best choices for FastPass+ ride reservations; How to avoid long waits in line.
  • All-new step-by-step touring plans for the Magic Kingdom, Epcot, Disney’s Hollywood Studios, and Animal Kingdom.

More Guides from the Unofficial Team

The Unofficial Guide to Disneyland 2019

  • The latest on Star Wars: Galaxy's Edge, the largest expansion in the history of Disneyland Park
  • Review of Disney California Adventure's newest attraction, Guardians of the Galaxy - Mission: BREAKOUT
  • What you need to know about MaxPass, Disneyland's new ride reservation system
  • Updated versions of our Touring Plans
  • Full review of the new Wizarding World of Harry Potter at Universal Studios Hollywood, including details on all the food, entertainment, and attractions
  • Refreshed restaurant information, and reviews of new and recently refurbished hotels in the Disneyland Resort area

The Unofficial Guide to Universal Orlando 2019

Order Now!

  • The same level of detail and data-driven content you've come to expect from all the Unofficial Guides
  • In-depth critical reviews of every Universal Orlando attraction including Race Through New York starring Jimmy Fallon and preview of Fast & Furious: Supercharged
  • Information on all the Universal resort hotels, including a preview of Universal's Aventura Hotel which opened in 2018, and how to get the most out of exclusive on-site benefits like Early Park Admission
  • Ratings and review of more than 80 restaurants, including CityWalk’s new Toothsome Chocolate Emporium and all other full-service eateries in Universal’s theme parks and hotels
  • A look at Volcano Bay water park, which opened in 2017
  • Complete coverage of The Wizarding World of Harry Potter, Hogshead Village and Diagon Alley, with updated tips for experiencing the Escape from Gringotts and Forbidden Journey rides
  • Advice on best times of year to visit and how to get around the lines, with details on Universal’s exciting seasonal events like Halloween Horror Nights and Mardi Gras
  • Patented, field-tested touring plans that save you hours in line

The Unofficial Guide to Disney Cruise Line 2018

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What's New in the Unofficial Guide to DCL 2018?

  • Reviews of the newest ports and itineraries
  • The latest information on the reburbishment of the Disney Wonder
  • Advice on the best time to purchase your fare (HINT: it isn't always as soon as it's released)
  • Our biggest photo update since the first edition
  • Review of Disney's river cruising option with Adventures by Disney
  • Coverage of Concierge level and if we think it's worth the money

The Unofficial Guide to Washington, D.C. 13th edition

Why the Unofficial Guide to D.C.?

  • In depth museum reviews from the same team that gives you our Disney books
  • Neighborhood walking tours so you can experience the US capital like a DC insider
  • More than 75 hotels and restaurants reviewed
  • Our best tips on how to save time and money on your D.C. trip

More Walt Disney World Unofficial Guides

As thorough as we try to make The Unofficial Guide to Walt Disney World - the "Big Book" - there isn't sufficient space for all the tips and valuable information that may be important and useful to certain readers. Thus, we've developed additional Disney World guides, each designed to work in conjunction with the Big Book. All provide information tailored to specific Disney World visitors.

The Unofficial Guide to Walt Disney World Color Companion, 4th edition

Walt Disney World is a destination that must be seen to be appreciated. With that in mind, we give you the Color Companion.

What is The Color Companion? How is it different from The Unofficial Guide to Walt Disney World?

1. It Really Is a Companion The Unofficial Guide to Walt Disney World gives you a deep dive on all aspects of your trip, from pricing, how to get around, the best places to eat, and all the little things that will help you plan the best vacation ever. The Color Companion is the latte you treat yourself with after all the planning to remind yourself that you're going on to Walt Disney World and it's going to be amazing. Settle in with photos of the fantastic hotel you've booked, the great meal you've planned, and the attractions you love.

2. This Guide Has a Sense of Humor There is a plentiful assortment of dry, plodding travel guides for readers who would prefer to know how many rivets there are in a flying elephant than to have a good chuckle. As for us, we’re all about providing excellent information and having some fun. No useful information was sacrificed to make room for humor in the Companion. We nailed down the essential content first and then added artistic and humorous elements to make the Companion a zippier and more enjoyable read. So, if you can tolerate a little irreverence, parody, and general wackiness, the Color Companion will serve you well.

3. Sometimes We’ll Pull Your Leg We might describe a fantasy resort that’s 100 feet underground with rock-chiseled furniture and an occasional mole in the guestrooms, or an octopus sandwich with tentacles everywhere and malevolent eyes peeking from between the buns. We’re pretty good at this, and sometimes we might fool you for a minute, but to make sure you don’t call Disney reservations and attempt to book a room, or try to order the octopus sandwich at the theme park, we’ve included this little icon to signal that we’ve taken a brief break from reality.

The Unofficial Guide to Walt Disney World with Kids 2019

Pre-order now!

by Bob Sehlinger and Liliane J. Opsomer with Len Testa presents planning and touring tips for a family vacation, along with more than 20 special touring plans for families that are not published anywhere else.

What Makes the Kids Guide Different from the Unofficial Guide to Walt Disney World?

  • We have seven Unofficial Advisors to give you a kids' eye view of everything Walt Disney World, including our newest recruits, Alex and Kieran from the U.K., and Ricky, who lives on a small horse farm in upstate New York. These guys tell it like it is.
  • How to enjoy PANDORA, Land of Avatar at Disney's Animal Kingdom with the whole family
  • How to make the most of FastPass+ with your family.
  • Exclusive, family-friendly touring plans (found only in this book) to guide you through the parks.
  • Updates on all the new resorts, attractions, entertainment, and Disney Springs that you will find in 2019.

Beyond Disney: The Unofficial Guide to Universal Orlando, SeaWorld & The Best of Central Florida 9th edition

Includes comprehensive coverage on the Wizarding World of Harry Potter. Both Universal Orlando and SeaWorld remain in the top theme parks to visit in the United States - each with attendance of almost 5 million per year.

There’s Another World Out There

If you think that central Florida consists only of Walt Disney World, you’re wrong. What’s more, you’re passing up some great fun and amazing sights. Admittedly, it’s taken a while, but Walt Disney World now has plenty of competition that measures up toe-to-toe. And though it may sound blasphemous to suggest a whole vacation in central Florida without setting foot on Disney property, it’s not only possible but also in many ways a fresh and appealing idea.

The big four non-Disney theme parks are Universal Studios Florida, Universal Islands of Adventure, SeaWorld, and Busch Gardens. Each is unique. Universal Studios Florida, a longtime rival of Disney’s Hollywood Studios, draws its inspiration from movies and television and is every bit the equal of the Disney movie-themed park. Universal Islands of Adventure is arguably the most modern, high-tech theme park in the United States, featuring an all-star lineup of thrill rides that make it the best park in Florida for older kids and young-at-heart adults.

SeaWorld provides an incomparable glimpse into the world of marine mammals and fish, served up in a way that (for the most part) eliminates those never-ending lines. Finally, Busch Gardens, with its shows, zoological exhibits, and knockout coasters, offers the most eclectic entertainment mix of any theme park we know.

All four parks approximate, equal, or exceed the Disney standard without imitating Disney, successfully blending distinctive presentations and personalities into every attraction.

Mini-Mickey: The Pocket-Sized Unofficial Guide to Walt Disney World

Mini-Mickey: The Pocket-Sized Unofficial Guide to Walt Disney World is the condensed version of the Unofficial team’s comprehensive Unofficial Guide to Walt Disney World. Though its format is slightly larger than true pocket-sized, this is an indispensable take-along guidebook. Straightforward, tightly organized, and well indexed, Mini-Mickey is the perfect resource when you want the most important information fast.

For readers on a short or impromptu trip to Walt Disney World the contents of Mini-Mickey can easily be digested on the flight or drive down, or at the hotel the night before visiting the parks. Scientifically created touring plans for each park will save four or more hours of standing in line.

For those who do not have time to plan their Disney trip in depth, Mini-Mickey takes the guesswork out of visiting the parks and ensure that the reader sees as much as possible with the least amount of stress and effort. This book provides expert authority on how to make the most efficient and most practical use of any family’s time.

Because every minute and every dollar counts, Mini Mickey: The Pocket-Sized Unofficial Guide to Walt Disney World provides the information needed to tour Walt Disney like a pro.

Last updated on August 4, 2019

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