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Last Day Disney Blues: What to Do on the Last Day of your Disney Vacation

by Cheryl Pendry, PassPorter Featured Columnist
Last modified 04-12-2012
  



PassPorter.com > Articles > Walt Disney World > Making Magic  

Anyone who’s ever gone on a Disney vacation sadly knows the feeling of the last day Disney blues only too well.


Any vacation that starts, after all, has to come to an end. So how do you deal with that?

The received wisdom in any Disney community is that the best solution to the end of a Disney vacation is to know when the next one is. After all, at least if it's got to end, then you may as well have something else to look forward to, right? But what happens if your next vacation is too far away to book anything? This can be a huge problem, if you're not planning on heading back for say, another 18 months.

Walt Disney World may not have accommodation on sale yet for the forthcoming year, and airfares certainly won't be out. It's a position we've been in many times before, and just because you can't book anything doesn't mean that you can't plan. I've had many times where I've planned everything out, from the dates we'll be on vacation, to the flights that hopefully we'd take, and the accommodation we'll book, many months before we can actually do anything. Admittedly, sometimes it doesn't work out the way that you plan things, but I've certainly found that being able to go through the planning process helps to stave off the Disney blues.

But what happens if you really can't plan another Disney vacation by the time you get to the last day of your current break? In this current economic climate, I'm sure that's the position that many people find themselves in, and certainly I feel that pain, as finances are a lot tighter for us than they have been for many years.

Caribbean Beach - main pool photo
Caribbean Beach - main pool

The main pool at the Caribbean Beach. - photo by chezp

Well, the first suggestion is to make sure that you go out with a bang! Don't let the blues spoil your last day. Sure, you may be flying later in the day, or perhaps the next day, if your flight is very early. Make the best of every precious moment that you still have at Disney, as it'll help you to forget that your vacation is coming to an end. If you, and your family, have a favorite park, then head to that, and perhaps enjoy your favorite rides there. Treat it as your chance to have some real fun, and enjoy the bits of Disney that you love the most. For us, we love Epcot, so we tend to gravitate there on our last day, and spend our time wandering around World Showcase, taking in all the sights we know and love so much.

If you have a favorite restaurant, then make an Advanced Dining Reservation (ADR) for that for your last day. I'm a huge fan of that wonderfully depressing donkey, Eeyore, so for me, any vacation that sees me dining with him at the Crystal Palace will see me finishing my vacation with a huge smile on my face!

There's also another approach you can take. Perhaps you don't have a day's park admission left to use by your last day? Well, why not head out, and still make the most of your time, and perhaps explore a new part of Walt Disney World? We were out with friends on our last vacation, and their last day happened to be the day that we all got off our cruise on the Disney Dream. We headed back to Downtown Disney, and then had a fun lunch at T-Rex, before renting a boat for an hour, and taking that out on the lake at Downtown Disney. It was a relaxing way to finish the vacation, and perhaps quite an unusual way to end our time at Disney, but still very pleasant all the same.

Depending what time your flight is, you might prefer to stay at your resort, and if the weather's nice, perhaps enjoy some time by the pool, or maybe explore the resort. Of course, don't forget, if you're checking out, the chances are you'll have to be out of your room by 11:00 am, which means that if anyone does go swimming, then you may have to think what to do with the wet swimming items. It's not ideal, but as a regular swimmer, I can tell that you can usually get away with putting them in a plastic bag, and washing them when you get home, even if that happens to be the next day.

Whatever you plan on your final day, don't forget to plan out how much time you actually do have. Remember to time out what time you need to be at the airport in time to check-in, get your boarding passes, and check your luggage, if you haven't already done so, and clear security. Then add on the time it will take to get there, as you don't want to cut it too fine. Trust me, we've done that before, and it makes your last vacation day suddenly become very stressful! If you're going to be travelling on Disney's Magical Express, they'll work that out for you, but again, don't forget to allow enough time to be back at your hotel for your bus.

Hopefully that gives you some idea of how to finish your Disney vacation on a high, even if the last day is traditionally a low point of any holiday.




Epcot - Japan photo
Epcot - Japan

The lush greenery of Japan in Epcot with buildings above it. - photo by chezp





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About the Author:
Cheryl and husband Mark live in England and love to travel, particularly to Disney, and they have made numerous visits to destinations across America and Europe. They recently completed their tour of every Disney theme park around the world, which culminated in their visit to Japan, including the Tokyo Disney Resort. Click here to view more of Cheryl's articles!


Recent Walt Disney World Articles:
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Reader Comments:


Oh, so true! All good things eventually do come to an end. And, sometimes there are still things to look forward to when arriving home, such as editing Photopass Photos or your own photos, or unpacking souvenirs that have been in those famous blue and white sacks since purchased, or making a photo album/scrapbook of your adventure.

While not done at the last day, it can sure make the last day easier knowing there is still something to look forward to.

Great article! smiley for :)

     toddjodybrent on April 13, 2012 @ 6:38 am
It is soooooo sad for my family! We don't get to go very often because of the cost (this trip for us will be about $7000 and that is for no parkhoppers and 2 rooms in all star). We take a "sad" picture the last night where we are waving to the camera with frowns on. I really try to not be depressed but it is a bit of a let down. Months of planning, dreaming, anticipating, then experiencing and poof its all done!

I do try to always live the disney dream by helping others plan their trips. To be honest the hardest part for my family is my sister is a vacation club member and her family goes to the parks several times a year...that is hard. Maybe someday we can swing it.

The last day of this trip is my Daughter's 17th bday and Father's day...hoping to do something special!

     apqsmom on April 13, 2012 @ 8:26 am
The morning we would leave Disney used to be so depressing. We would have to leave the "world" behind and face a long car ride home. Yuck! But now we make reservations for a character breakfast early in the morning before we depart. This has become the perfect way to have one last Disney hoorah before real life starts anew! smiley for :D

     zjm on April 13, 2012 @ 9:16 am
toddjodybrent;3922580 >Oh, so true! All good things eventually do come to an end. And, sometimes there are still things to look forward to when arriving home, such as editing Photopass Photos or your own photos, or unpacking souvenirs that have been in those famous blue and white sacks since purchased, or making a photo album/scrapbook of your adventure.

While not done at the last day, it can sure make the last day easier knowing there is still something to look forward to.

Great article! smiley for :)


Glad you liked it. smiley for :waytogo: Some of what you mentioned may be in a forthcoming article... :whistle:

     chezp on April 13, 2012 @ 1:19 pm
apqsmom;3922618 >It is soooooo sad for my family! We don't get to go very often because of the cost (this trip for us will be about $7000 and that is for no parkhoppers and 2 rooms in all star). We take a "sad" picture the last night where we are waving to the camera with frowns on. I really try to not be depressed but it is a bit of a let down. Months of planning, dreaming, anticipating, then experiencing and poof its all done!

I do try to always live the disney dream by helping others plan their trips. To be honest the hardest part for my family is my sister is a vacation club member and her family goes to the parks several times a year...that is hard. Maybe someday we can swing it.

The last day of this trip is my Daughter's 17th bday and Father's day...hoping to do something special!


You mean your sister never has any points left over for you? What a shame. :(

It sounds like the last day of this trip should really be something special. smiley for :)

     chezp on April 13, 2012 @ 1:20 pm
zjm;3922649 >The morning we would leave Disney used to be so depressing. We would have to leave the "world" behind and face a long car ride home. Yuck! But now we make reservations for a character breakfast early in the morning before we depart. This has become the perfect way to have one last Disney hoorah before real life starts anew! smiley for :D

What a great way to finish off a Disney vacation! smiley for :waytogo:

     chezp on April 13, 2012 @ 1:21 pm
chezp;3922794 >Glad you liked it. smiley for :waytogo: Some of what you mentioned may be in a forthcoming article... :whistle:



Happy Writing!! smiley for :)

     toddjodybrent on April 13, 2012 @ 6:46 pm
While the last day is usually depressing, we always try to take a late flight out so that we can enjoy one last day before we leave. We also like to buy some of the Disney snacks and have them on hand to eat until our next trip. (Like goofy suckers, gummies, cookies etc.) One other thing we do is use some of the soap, shampoo and lotion we have collected while there throughout the year. Every now and then I use some and it makes me feel like I am "home" and the smell just brings back great memories.

     jlhill4444 on April 13, 2012 @ 8:22 pm
Loved the ideas!



I sent the link to my DW, then checked CRT. We have a late dinner at CRT to celebrate our anniversary on our last night at the world.

Never would have tried to gt in with less than 90 days before our trip.



Thanks for the idea!

     DisneyDaddy on May 25, 2012 @ 10:20 pm
DisneyDaddy;3953241 >Loved the ideas!

I sent the link to my DW, then checked CRT. We have a late dinner at CRT to celebrate our anniversary on our last night at the world.
Never would have tried to gt in with less than 90 days before our trip.

Thanks for the idea!


Glad I could help - and what a great way to end your trip! smiley for :waytogo:

     chezp on May 26, 2012 @ 12:19 am
Great article... We have been discussing what to do our last day at WDW as our plane leaves at 7:30pm and we will be using the Magical Express. My question, should we have a late lunch somewhere nice as we will each have one table service left, (no park passes left), Downtown Disney, A Disney Resort, without being rushed... I love reading everyones ideas, as this trip is the first time my Husband and I will be without the kids or grandkids. Can't wait for your ideas. Counting the days till Oct/2012.smiley for :)

     Karen66 on July 15, 2012 @ 9:26 pm
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Updated 04-12-2012 - Article #795 



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