Home » 6 Items People Need to Stop Trying to Sneak Into Walt Disney World

6 Items People Need to Stop Trying to Sneak Into Walt Disney World

March of the First Order led by Captain Phasma

We’ve all been there. You’re standing in the security line to get into Magic Kingdom when the queue comes to a sudden halt. The security guard checking the bag in front of yours frowns, reaches in, and pulls out a giant bottle of wine.

Someone’s just been caught with Walt Disney World contraband.

There’s little you can do as the family ahead of you proceeds to argue why they should be allowed to bring their expensive wine, or their selfie stick, or their poodle who just “happens to like napping” inside a closed duffel bag into the parks. It almost never ends pretty.

March of the First Order

Captain Phasma is not amused…
Image: Disney

A place as busy as Walt Disney World understandably has to have some rules in place to keep the myriad guests who visit every day safe and happy. Unfortunately, some guests get a little carried away preparing the perfect Walt Disney World visit and fail to check that Disney actually has a list of around 20 categories of items that are not permitted in their parks. Veteran parkgoers know to never bring these faux paux items, but it seems inevitable on a busy day to see a security line grind to a standstill because someone tries to bring in a banned item and ends up incensed when security tells them they can tread no further.

Some guests inevitably try to stuff these forbidden items into their coats, trousers, and diaper bags to only to usually be stopped again by security (who is always watching). This doesn’t only mess up a Disney day for guests who get caught. It also slows down everyone else’s ability to get into the park.

There are plenty of odd things people try to bring into Disney parks, but we wanted to highlight six items people seriously need to stop trying to sneak into Walt Disney World.

1. Alcohol

World Showcase Cast with Food and Wine goodies

Image: Disney

On one hand, there’s something understandable about a family thinking it would be cool to have a bottle of wine on hand for an idyllic picnic in front of Cinderella Castle or under the Tree of Life. Unfortunately, trying to live out this particular fantasy is going to land you in a very awkward conversation with security.

Alcohol of any type, in any clever container, no matter how expensive or chintzy is not permitted for guests to bring into Walt Disney World. On one hand, off-site alcohol cuts into Disney’s profits in parks like Epcot where beer and wine are par for the course. However, there is another far more important reason outside alcohol is banned at Walt Disney World.

Sloshing drunk people make for some very un-magical moments at the Most Magical Place on Earth.

People do some downright absurd things while drunk at Disney World. Until recently, alcohol was completely banned at Magic Kingdom. While Disney allows a fair amount of drinking in Epcot and in some of its bars and restaurants, they also keep a close eye on guests who start to get rowdy or unruly from having one too many. By controlling alcohol sales, they can at least somewhat keep an eye on this. However, things could get out of control quickly with adults bringing in hard liquor and deciding to throw a kegger on Tom Sawyer Island. There is seriously no upside to letting guests bring outside alcohol in.

Short story? Stay classy and leave that bottle of wine at the resort.

2. Selfie-Sticks

Selfie Stick

Image: Aaron Yoo, Flickr (license)

We’ve touched on this before, but it’s worth mentioning again because it’s such a common issue guests try to subvert. 50,000 guests all waving long metal poles at the same time is a disaster waiting to happen, and one that nearly did happen at Disney’s California Adventure when a guest decided to use a selfie stick on the California Screamin’ roller coaster.

Selfie-sticks are a serious safety risk on Disney’s dark and thrill rides, one that Disney officials rightfully were not willing to take. They are also an eye-sore that would have badly affected the atmosphere in the parks. For dozens of reasons, selfie sticks are banned from all Disney parks. I’m surprised how many I still see snuck in, but rest assured that using one will only mark you to your fellow guests and watching cast members as “that guy”.

3. Dead people (seriously)

Zombie's in Mickey Halloween Parade

Image: Disney

This one teeters on the edge of being an urban legend, but some cast members have actually claimed this is a real (if not rare) phenomenon. Many families have loved ones pass who understandably held a deep love for Walt Disney World. Unfortunately, this sentiment has led to some guests attempting to lay cremated family and friends to rest inside Disney parks. Most commonly, The Haunted Mansion and Pirates of the Caribbean are cited as the location of the incidents.

Disney does not mention the issue on its restricted items lists and has claimed that rumors about the practice are false, but understandably, scattering human remains on attractions is not permitted and can potentially land guests with a lifetime ban. Besides the health reasons related to scattering ashes on a moving ride, it’s also not a great way to ensure your loved ones remains are treated with respect as they will have to be cleaned up and disposed of at some point.

4. Drones

Drone in flight

Image: Dennis Jarvis, Flickr (license)

What could possibly go wrong unleashing a maneuverable bladed disk into a massive crowd? You’d think this one would be common sense, but the issue is apparently common enough that Disney decided to add drones to their list of banned items. No matter how much you want that sweet helicopter shot of Splash Mountain, resist the impulse to try to bring your drone to the Most Magical Place on Earth. You’re just going to look goofy if you do this, and the actual Goofy will definitely not approve.

5. Mega-coolers and most anything with wheels

Man on old-timey high wheel bicycle

Image: James Gardiner Collection, Flickr (license)

You’ve got to give props to Disney that they still allow guests to bring outside food into the parks. Like most movie theaters, they really would be well within their rights as a company to ban outside lunches, but picnicking at Walt Disney World remains a fun and permissible pastime for visitors. Go, Disney!

However, yet again, some guests get a little carried away with their Disney picnic plans. Giant wheeled coolers, suitcases, and other mega-bags are a no go at Walt Disney World, but guests still show up every day trying to get enough food for a tailgate party past the opening gate pretty regularly. Instead of having to lug something as massive and unwieldy as a cooler or suitcase through the parks, opt for small soft-sided coolers or sack lunches that can fit in a backpack. The specific dimensions Disney caps bag sizes at is 24″ (61 cm) long x 15″ (38 cm) wide x 18″ (46 cm) high.

The same goes for segways, rollerblades, roller shoes, roller derby gear, bicycles, skateboards, Penny-farthings, and other various jalopies. If it’s not a stroller of appropriate size, mobility scooter, or wheelchair, you are out of luck. 

6. Anything that looks like a weapon

Squirt Guns

Image: Dean Hochman, Flickr (license)

This one is obvious in the case of guns, pepper-spray, and knives (yes, even your Leatherman, my handy friend), but the issue here isn’t so much real weapons as fake ones.

Anyone who cosplays on a regular basis has probably become long familiar with the policy of not attempting to bring costume weapons into conventions, movie screenings, and public events without checking with venues about their rules. The issue at Walt Disney World isn’t so much adult costumes (which are banned anyways) so much as actual kid’s toys—and boy, can it get awkward when parents don’t realize this when they arrive at the parks.

It doesn’t matter how plasticky, lime green, or glittery pink your child’s toy weapon is—if it looks like a gun, you cannot bring it into Disney parks. It doesn’t matter if it squirts water, blows bubbles, or makes fart noises. It doesn’t matter if your little angel bursts into tears at the prospect of being separated from their favorite Han Solo blaster— it’s not getting in and trying to sneak it in after the fact will only make things worse. Disney has even gone so far as to change all of their old bubble gun toys into bubble wands in recent years.

I will give it to Disney cast members that they generally handle this issue pretty delicately. My husband and I goofed up on this issue at the premiere of Rogue One in Disney Springs after being told by AMC that peace-tied toy blasters were okay for fans watching the movie in costume. A wonderfully polite Disney manager in the Springs area let us know that while lightsabers are cool, we needed to return our prop blaster to the car. The issue was easily fixed and we carried on with our day happy that Disney takes safety so seriously. For families with small kids visiting the Magic Kingdom however, things could get way more uncomfortable since kids might not understand these complexities. Avoid this situation entirely by making sure your little pirate or Jedi leave any toy guns behind.

What other odd things have you seen people try to sneak into Walt Disney World?