MyDisneyExperience is the new law of the land for people who want to visit the most popular theme park resort in the world. Via this web site and app, customers can plan their rides using the FastPass+ system, find suggestions for meals and map their way across the sprawling Walt Disney World parks.
There is just one problem...a dirty little secret for those who have already used it. MyDisneyExperience is a resource hog. As smartphones and tables become a ubiquitous part of the amusement park visit (a Disney-mandated one in fact), keeping the juice in your phone has become crucial to your enjoyment. How does one survive a full day at a Disney theme park while facing limited charging options? Let’s examine the five best ways to keep your battery topped up.
1. The Mophie Juice Pack
I should preface this suggestion by noting that it is the costliest option mentioned in this discussion. I should also add that I am someone who never leaves the house without my iPad. In debating my options for a recent trip to Walt Disney World, my wife put her foot down on the subject of my carrying around my admittedly unwieldy iPad. Instead, I switched to my less preferred device, my iPhone. She suggested that I follow her lead and pick up a juice pack for the trip. The moral of the story is that I should always listen to my wife!
The Mophie Juice Pack is a widely popular battery charger, and it sells extremely well for a reason. It is an optimal solution for the problem of limited battery life. Since the device is designed to be a case while adding only about 10% to the overall size of an iPhone, the juice pack effectively doubles the available charge. That is the difference between your phone shutting down for good at 3 p.m. as opposed to lasting through the fireworks display and ride back to the hotel. Given how much a person spends on the average Disney vacation, this purchase more than pays for itself. For a seven day stay, the Mophie averages out to $11 a day in exchange for peace of mind as well as sustained contact with the outside world. How will you brag to your friends that you are at Disney if you cannot upload photos to Instagram in order to make your friends jealous?
2. The Trent iCarrier
This is the heavyweight solution on the list. I actually own two of these, and I swear by them on extended trips. If I pre-charge both batteries prior to the trip, the 12,000 mAh of power surging through each one is enough to last me for about four days with no additional plugging required. If I am able to utilize a charging station at any point during a weeklong trip, the iCarrier batteries can sustain me for a full week of vacation. Better yet, they are frequently sold on Amazon for as little as $38, making them approximately half the price of the Mophie.
There is, unfortunately, a downside. As my wife is quick to note, the Trent iCarrier battery is a brick. It is a heavy and bulky device that is awkward to carry around. Since I am a really large person (6’4”), the scale of it never bothers me. Since my wife is 5’2” and has small hands, it is the equivalent of being forced to walk around the park while carrying a pineapple to her. So, I strongly recommend the device with the caveat that if you are not prone to gigantism, it may not be right for you.
3. Anker® Astro (a.k.a. the lipstick charger)
This solution falls somewhere between the first two. It offers the portability of the first device along with some of the charging power of the second one. The Astro contains a 4,000 mAh charge, a marvel of design for something that is 3.5 inches long and weighs 2.5 ounces. For comparison, the iCarrier is over five times as heavy while providing “only” three times the charge. In other words, the Astro provides more bang for the buck for people who believe that size does not matter.
The Astro is also easily the cheapest of the add-on solutions, costing only $17 on Amazon as I type this. If back-up power matters to you but you do not want to carry around a paperweight all day, the Astro slides easily into your pocket or purse while still providing more than enough power to sustain you during an amusement park visit. Due its tiny size, I consider it to be the best option for women who like their current iPhone case too much to swap out for a Mophie.