The last time I wrote about my upcoming trip to Disneyland Resort Paris (DLP) was at the beginning of July. As you are reading this, I am on my way to DLP! What makes a trip to a foreign Disney Park, or any foreign destination for that matter, unique are the considerations that have to be taken when traveling abroad. The lead up to a trip like this requires extra planning. Here are four extra steps I had to take:
Applying for a Passport: Even though Epcot teaches you that the world is quite easy travel via communication, as we are all on Spaceship Earth, I unfortunately must inform you that reality is not so simple. With that in mind, in order to visit other countries, a passport must be obtained. The process is not too difficult, but it is important to plan for, as they cost over $100 and can take some time to receive, so you want to get this done as early as possible. Yes, this is a no-brainer step, but it still is of utmost importance.
Exchanging Currency: One of the final steps before leaving is to exchange currency so you have the proper bills to pay for all the little, and big costs encountered overseas. Disneyland Paris is obviously located in France which means it is one of many European countries to use the Euro (the park even used to be called Euro Disney Resort, but was changed due to the lukewarm reception of sharing a name with currency). A Euro and a US Dollar are not equivalent values, however, so you will end up with less Euros than Dollars. You can also use debit and credit cards, but you should notify your bank/credit card company about the trip, so they know that your card has not been stolen.
Flight and Timezones: The majority of Walt Disney World visitors arrive via plane; however, traveling from somewhere in the US to Orlando is a shorter flight than flying to Europe. Not only will you be on a plane longer, but there will also be a time difference (six hours from my Departure in Boston), so try to get a good nights sleep before because jetlag will affect you upon arrival. Keep in mind that despite wanting to sleep when you reach your destination you will want to get in line with the location’s time zone, so you may be staying up longer than usual.
Transportation to your Hotel: Disneyland Resort Paris is about 45 minutes away from the Charles De Gaulle Airport, and after a long flight you will want an easy way of getting to your hotel. I personally am taking a van offered as a separate cost when booking online, which is not operated by Disney. If you think you want to rent a car, be aware that a license for international driving is required.
By far, the most important part of traveling anywhere is to have a good time, so do your best to plan things out so you can avoid any complications while away.
Zack Kaplan is a Disney fan whose love for the house of mouse is only matched by his love for video games. His goal is to visit all the Disney parks on Earth and maybe on the Moon if they get around to building one. You can reach him at email@example.com or @ofmickeyandmen . For fun find him on other websites, he’s like a living hidden Mickey!