From Our Friend Autumn Barnes, Travel Agent
Intro from Stephen Ashley: I recently wrote an article called Riding Out Hurricanes at Walt Disney World, and our friend Autumn Barnes wrote a follow-up post on facebook. It was full of some great tips, so we asked her permission to include it on our site. (If you haven’t read my original article yet, be sure to check it out here. It’s full of info that is not on this page.)
Here are Autumn’s tips, and if you need a travel agent, check out her agency at Pirate & Mermaid Vacations.
Autumn’s Tips for Riding Out a Hurricane at Disney World
I have not stayed at Disney during a hurricane, but I will tell you that I learned the following this year from Irma and from living on the East Coast of VA during hurricanes.
1. KNOW the Walt Disney World Resort Hurricane policy (https://disneyworld.disney.go.com/faq/hurricane-policy/)
2. BUY THE DANG TRAVEL INSURANCE DISNEY OFFERS!!!!! And then make sure you keep copies of emails from your airline, etc. Keep in case they cancel your flights. You’ll need your original resort final invoice showing what you were paying and any additional invoices/receipts in case you have to file a claim. (Note from Stephen Ashley: If you missed the chance to buy the insurance from Disney, you can consider insurance from outside companies like this one here.)
3. If you elect to stay, ORDER groceries early as places that deliver will fill up fast. (Amazon Prime Now is a great option)
4. Charge all your portable charges the night/day before the storm comes, and leave them alone until you loose power.
5. Make sure you have a friend at home with your contact info at Disney World.
6. If you have to extend your room, once a storm is a go, talk to the resort front desk about extending said room.
7. Don’t leave the room during “curfew hours”. They have room lock downs for a reason.
8. Have the NOAA Hurricane site bookmarked on your phone’s browser (http://www.nhc.noaa.gov/)
9. Download or better yet buy a BOOK to read, board games or some sort of activity to do in case the power goes out.
10. Stay away from the resort windows during the storm.
11. If you drove, go fill your car early, and leave it sitting in a spot away from trees if possible.
12. If you have canned goods, have a can opener that uses human power, not electricity.
13. Adhere to resort rules on hot plates, etc. (ie, no you can’t use them)
14. If you have a cooler, fill it with ice and leave it closed as long as possible. Put Ziploc Bags full of ice in your room fridge too, in case the power goes out. (Just remember to double bag to prevent a leaky mess.)
15. Accept that Housekeeping and Maintenance are going to be playing catch-up and cleanup when the hurricane is all done, so things won’t be perfect right away.
16. Show Cast Member’s and other guests respect in the time leading up to, during and after the storm.
And most importantly… Don’t run around social media being a doom sayer or freaking people out. Check on your friends in the hurricane area, but also accept the fact that they may be busy and/or may not be able to live on Social Media during the storm, so replying to people’s posts right then is not their priority.
Watch their FB walls etc. for updates, and if you PM or text them to check on them, let them know “I know I am not your priority right now.. so get back to me when you can. I just wanted to make sure you were doing ok and know I was thinking of you.”
Nothing is worse than a friend loosing their mind in your inbox or worse yet on your wall because you didn’t comment back to them in 10-20 minutes because power was out, cell towers were down, etc. Their freak out causes others to freak out, which stresses the person in the storm even more.
Do you have any tips or thoughts on weathering a hurricane at Disney World? Please comment below.
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