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Sleeping Beauty's castle at Walt Disney World
satur73 | Adobe Stock

7 Surprising Things You Can’t Do at Disney World

For somewhere that calls itself “the most magical place on earth”, Disney World sure has a lot of rules. The Walt Disney Company imposes regulations that dictate everything from what you wear inside the parks to what you can do in your own hotel room.

Here are seven surprising things that you can’t do at Disney World.

Wear Costumes or Masks

Mickey Mouse dressed up in a safari costume
russell102 | Adobe Stock

Apparently there’s an age at which wearing a costume goes from being cute and adorable to creepy and threatening, and according to Disney, that age is 14.

Disney forbids guests aged 14 or older from wearing costumes or masks (not including medical face masks) within the parks, so you’ll have to settle for rocking a pair of mouse ears instead of a full-on costume on your visit unless you’re a kid.

Use a Selfie Stick

You’ll have to ask someone else to take your photo with Goofy at Disney World, since selfie sticks are banned from the park. Under Disney’s rules, “selfie sticks, hand-held extension poles for cameras or mobile devices, flags and banners” are not allowed. 

Object to Disney Using Your Image

People who value their privacy may want to think twice about visiting Disney. Disney’s rules state that they may “photograph, film, videotape, record or otherwise reproduce the image and/or voice of any person who enters the Walt Disney World Resort, and use the same for any purpose without payment to any person.”

So not only could your image become part of Disney’s marketing forever, but you won’t even see a dime in compensation for your unwilling modeling. 

Scatter Ashes

Tombstones at Disney World's haunted mansion

Disney is such a happy place for so many people that some may actually wish to spend eternity in the parks. Unfortunately, there’s no afterlife lifetime parks pass available, and so you cannot spread the ashes of a loved one at Disney. 

According to the Wall Street Journal, people scatter ashes within the park so often that staff members have a special code phrase for the resulting vacuuming up that’s required, referring to it as “HEPA cleanup.”

Although the practice is strictly forbidden, the Wall Street Journal reports that guests still frequently manage to smuggle in ashes and distribute them among the park grounds, as well as on rides—in particular, at the Haunted Mansion.

Hang Clothes or Towels from Your Hotel Room Balcony

Tossing your wet towel over your hotel room’s balcony could land you in hot water at Disney World. Clothing and towels are not allowed to be hung over Disney Resort hotel balconies, so you’ll need to find a place inside your room to air-dry your items instead. 

Wear Long Clothes

Packing a long maxi dress so you can look like a princess in all your Disney photos? Better make sure that hem isn’t too long, as “clothing that drags on the ground” is prohibited in all Disney parks. 

Use a Plastic Straw

Entrance to Disney World's Animal Kingdom
AmeriCantaro | Adobe Stock

It makes sense that if you order a drink at Disney’s Animal Kingdom theme park, water parks or Animal Kingdom Lodge you’ll get one with a wildlife-friendly paper or reusable straw. Plastic straws are forbidden in these locations in order to protect the animals—so don’t try to bring in your own.

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