How To Do Disneyland Paris In One Day

Disneyland Paris is made up of two parks; Disneyland and Walt Disney Studios which often leads people to ask the question, can I visit the entire Disneyland Paris resort (both parks) in one day?

While you can visit both of the parks (Disneyland & Walt Disney Studios) at Disneyland Paris in one day, you’re unlikely to be able to go on all the rides & see all the shows. Instead, we try to allocate one day per park at a minimum.

Based on our own experience of visiting Disneyland Paris multiple times we’ve found that there are, however, a number of things that could make visiting both parks at Disneyland Paris for one day more achievable.

Buy Your Tickets In Advance

If you’re only spending one day at Disneyland Paris then time is going to be of the essence.

As a result, you don’t want to be waiting around in a queue to purchase tickets on the morning of your visit. Especially since that first hour as the park opens is absolutely essential to making the most of your day. 

Instead, you want to have your tickets purchased in advance so you can head straight for the park gates. 

When organising a trip ourselves (booking the flight, hotel and park tickets separately) we use AttractionTix (we also use them for tickets to Walt Disney World, Disneyland and Universal Studios). 

However, when booking to stay on-site we’ll book a Disneyland Paris holiday and combine the hotel and park tickets (and sometimes flights depending on the cost difference). 

In both cases, you’ll be provided with a digital QR code ticket which you can scan at the gate to gain entry into the park both quickly and easily.

Arrive Before “Rope Drop”

I’ve already mentioned the first hour in the parks is essential to ensure your day gets off to a great start. 

That first hour is the quietest in the park and means you’ll be able to head to the most popular ride(s) and experience incredibly short wait times. 

Of course to maximise this first hour, not only do you need to have your park tickets ready to go. You also need to be at the park as it opens. 

Many people make the mistake of seeing the park opening at 9am and arriving at the park at 9am.

However, in that case, it’s already 9.30am or even 10am before you’re through security, the entry gates and onto Main Street USA. 

Instead, you want to arrive at least one hour before the park opens to give you plenty of time to get through security and to the park gates, read to go to your favourite and highest priority ride. 

Get Breakfast Before Heading To The Park

Another mistake I see people making when arriving to Disneyland Paris is heading for breakfast. 

I’ve already mentioned that those first 60 minutes at Disneyland Paris are incredibly important, therefore wasting them by queuing for a coffee in Starbucks is not a good idea. 

Instead, I recommend heading into the Disney Village or even grabbing something on your way to the parks well in advance of the parks opening times so you’re free to head straight to your favourite ride once the park opens.

Prioritise Rides & Attractions

Prioritising rides and attractions is key when visiting Disneyland Paris and this prioritisation comes on two levels;

A personal level – Which rides do I personally want to go on during my trip

A park level – Which rides are the most popular

In this case, research is going to be essential. 

If you’ve been to Disneyland Paris previously you might already have a good idea as to the ride or rides that you MUST go on during your trip, and which ones you’re happy to skip. 

However, if you’ve not been to the park previously I suggest watching some videos or doing some further research to give you an idea as to which rides you might enjoy the most. 

It’s then about getting familiar with the average wait times for each ride.

If you have a personal ‘must go on’ ride that’s also a very popular ride within the rest of the park (Crush’s Coaster or Peter Pan’s Flight for example) then you’ll want to head to that ride first at rope drop. 

If on a personal level you want to go on Phantom Manor then you should be good to wait until the end of the day for that ride since it’s often only got a wait time of 5 to 20 minutes even during peak times.

Stay On-Site At A Disneyland Paris Hotel

By now you’ve likely realised that maximising your experience during one day at Disneyland Paris is all about timing. 

Luckily, one way you’re able to hack time is by staying on-site in a Disneyland Paris hotel.

While staying in a Disneyland Paris hotel is often more expensive when compared to similar star rating accommodation in the region it comes with two key benefits. 

Firstly, Disneyland Paris hotels are within close proximity of the Disneyland Paris resort (often walking distance depending on the exact hotel you choose). 

Second, staying at a Disneyland Paris hotel comes with the added benefit of Extra Magic Hours. 

Extra Magic Hours allow you to enter the park (selected parks on selected days) either 30 minutes or 1 hour in advance of the general public. 

Being within walking distance of the Disneyland Paris parks allows you to be rested and energised when you arrive, maximising those magical hours inside the park. 

Meanwhile, Extra Magic Hours when utilised correctly allow you to head to the most popular rides before the general public making the most of shorter standby wait times. 

Get A Premier Access Pass

The ultimate hack to visiting Disneyland Paris in one day is a Premier Access pass. 

This pass provides you with the ability to skip the queue on all eligible rides. This includes popular rides such as;

  • Crush’s Coaster
  • Orbitron
  • Peter Pan’s Flight
  • RC Car

And many, many more. 

We’ve previously picked and paid for which rides we want Premier Access to individually.

However, in this case, I’d suggest getting the pass that provides you with Premier Access on all the eligible rides for one day so you’re able to use it on every ride and attraction where it’s accepted. 

While the Premier Access pass des come at a cost, it’s in our opinion the tip on this list that provides the most significant impact on your ability to have a wonderful time at Disneyland Paris – even when only visiting for one day!

Order Your Food On Mobile In Advance

At lunch and dinner time you can easily be waiting 20 minutes to be served at the quick service restaurants such as Casey’s Hot Dogs and Café Hyperion.

However, by downloading the Disneyland Paris mobile application (available for both iOS and Android) you’re able to view the menu and order your food in advance for selected restaurants. 

Ordering your food in advance couldn’t be easier. Simply go ahead and order and pay for the food on your mobile device, then once alerted, go ahead and pick your order up from the selected restaurant. 

Each restaurant will have a ‘Mobile Order’ line. However, this can sometimes be hard to see when it’s super busy so don’t be afraid to ask a staff member where you need to go to collect.

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