Another Disney Dilemma: Disney Park Relationship Compatibility

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There two types of Disneyland guests in this world. There are those who believe Guardians of the Galaxy Mission Breakout is the resort’s best attraction, and those who know it is the Matterhorn. Representatives of the former group may well accompany members of the latter and have a spectacular time at The Happiest Place on Earth. Inside, however, both will harbor private resentment that they could be having a much better time with someone with more properly aligned sympathies.

Love whom you love. Travel with whom you travel. But, know, the hours you spend park hopping and in line will be far more fulfilling the more the person, or persons, you are with share your sentiment. With the help of The Disney Compatibility Test you may well find that certain someone that, for you, facilitates an ideal park visit. We’re not saying it ought to define your social circle (sure we are), but if you have to choose between a friend with whom you share a surfeit of Disney interests, and one who has none, well, take the first one. This test will help you identify such people.

Disney Compatibility applies to friendships as well as more intimate relationships. Anyone with whom you choose to spend time in a Disney Park is, naturally, going to have an impact upon that time. We want to help you make the most of it.

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The Litmus Test

One major distinction between Disney enthusiasts may be measured in their appreciation for tradition. As in the Guardians of the Galaxy/Matterhorn example, certain guests understand and appreciate Disney history, while others passionately embrace the progress. There is crossover, certainly. You can love Space Mountain and Radiator Springs Racers simultaneously, with equal emotion. Many guests do. But, like with the Tupac/Biggie debate, if pressed, pretty much everyone has a favorite.

It is possible (see likely) that someone going to Disneyland for the first time in their twenties, in 2018, will not entirely enjoy “it’s a small world.” Yes, it is a hopelessly charming attraction, that is difficult not to love. Still, if we are honest with ourselves, much of that opinion is fashioned by its history. As satisfying as it is to find fault with people who don’t love the Haunted Mansion, think about how much of your own impression is shaped by your exposure to Disney culture.

Try not to be too hasty with anyone of a different era, or who suffered a less-Disney-intensive upbringing. But, again, you are cautioned to consider how much Disney exposure you wish to share with such people.

The Primary Measure

Do you love it? Believe it or not, some people don’t. They still deserve to go, if they choose to. Just don’t go with them.

When you enter Disneyland at the Main Gate, do you purposely pass through the tunnel on the left? Do you do so every time because it was the original way in? Because you did so as a kid and you are now and forever instinctively drawn that way? Picture passing through the turnstiles with someone who also automatically heads left. Consider the difference in the experience being with someone who angles to the right. Suffer their reasoning supported upon the shattered foundation of convenience, or worse, that it doesn’t matter which way you go. Your day could be ruined before you’ve even breached the railroad tracks.

Finding Balance

Disney Compatibility does not discriminate. Guests of every inclination ought to have the best time possible. If you are not entirely passionate about Disneyland your experience may be lessened by someone who is overly so, in the same you might effect theirs. Not everyone was raised on Disney. It can be difficult to be on Main Street, in Frontierland, and on Pirates of the Caribbean, with someone with more annual passes to their credit than you’ve had visits. The unbridled enthusiasm, the shameless ear-forward adornment, the endless knowing everything about everything can be overwhelming.

There is no future in attempting to dictate someone else’s level of appreciation. Both parties wind up less satisfied; an entire waste of a Disney experience. Go to Disneyland with someone who likes roller coasters and the outdoors, if those are your personal priorities. Given the space and oxygen, you may discover what it is that brings others such delight. Without someone insisting upon your appreciation, you may very well develop it on your own.

It is acceptable to malign New England Patriots fans. Feel free to judge anyone who didn’t pick Tupac in our earlier reference. And don’t even get us started with Coke versus Pepsi. There are any number of reasons to question and then fault the judgement of others. Disney, though, is all about enjoyment. With the wrong attitude, and clearly the wrong companions, you will not be maximizing yours.

Surround yourself with those who share your enthusiasm for Indiana Jones and the nightly fireworks spectacular. Let those who maintain Big Thunder Mountain is not a real roller coaster and claim the Fantasyland attractions are childish “enjoy” the parks together and in their own way.

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About the author

Christopher Schmidt

Christopher Schmidt is a former Disneyland Resort bartender and author of The Unofficial Walt Disney World Drinking Companion, The Unofficial Disneyland Drinking Companion, and The Complete Guide to runDisney - Disneyland Edition.
If it involves amusement, attractions, athletics, adventure, and responsible enjoyment of exotic libations, you will find Christopher in the middle of it, eager to tell you all about it.
Questions, topic ideas or improvements, and private correspondence? Drop me a message: [email protected]

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  • I’m completely baffled by this notion that people exist who don’t love Haunted Mansion. And if such people existed, you’d associate with them? Really?