Tips and Stories to Inspire You to Visit Shanghai Disneyland

We spent one amazing  day at Shanghai Disneyland and we could not be more obsessed! It truly is the happiest place on earth and this park is our favorite of all the Disney Parks in the world! We have been to all – except for Hong Kong – and this one still reigns supreme! This episode is for all the Disney fans out there!

Stories from our visit to Shanghai Disneyland

  • Getting tickets to Disneyland Shanghai
  • How to get to Shanghai Disneyland
  • Navigating the park when everything is in Mandarin
  • Interesting food at the park
  • Afternoon tea at the Disneyland Hotel
  • Rides and characters at Shanghai Disneyland
  • And other cool things about the park that you can’t find anywhere else

Also see: Episode 3 – 10 day China vacation on a Gate1 Travel tour.

Visit Shanghai Disneyland – Episode Transcript

2 (55s):
Hey, Hey, welcome to this weeks episode of the Travel Squad Podcast. Grab your Mickey or Minnie ears because today we’re taking you with us to Shang HAI Disneyland

4 (1m 7s):

1 (1m 8s):
We touched and teased about Shanghai Disney in episode three when we were in China, but we felt like this park deserved its own episode.

3 (1m 16s):
In this episode, we’re going to be giving you inside tips and how to navigate the park to spend your day at Shanghai Disneyland

4 (1m 23s):
And touch on the subtle differences between Shanghai Disney versus the American Disneyland slash magic kingdom parks. So without further ado, let’s have a magical day, everybody. Yeah, the magical episode, excuse me.

2 (1m 41s):
So before you get to the park, where do you want to purchase your tickets on line?

4 (1m 45s):
Yeah. So before we went to the park, even before our trip to China, we bought our tickets online from the Shanghai Disney website. And it was really interesting the way that they did it. Cause usually when you buy tickets online, you’ll actually be able to print your own tickets, but they didn’t have a system for us to print the tickets. It was basically a confirmation number and that confirmation number was tied to our names. And when we got to the gate, we gave that to them and that’s where they gave us the tickets. So a little bit different, but as long as you have that confirmation, that’s all you really need. And I definitely recommend buying it before your trip, because the last thing you want to do when you go to Disneyland, whether it be in Shanghai, Florida, any Disney park in the world is wait in a line that you don’t have to, which is to buy your own ticket.

2 (2m 35s):
Didn’t Casha and Ryan who went with us, buy their tickets at the park.

4 (2m 38s):
Very good point. So our friends Casha and Ryan, who we met on our tour to China, they actually were planning to go to Shanghai Disney as well. So we all made it a whole group events since we were going to, and they didn’t pre-buy their tickets. So they actually ended up having to wait in line to purchase their tickets.

2 (2m 59s):
But it all out,

4 (2m 60s):
It all worked out. I think they did the same thing when we were in Tokyo with them too. Yeah.

1 (3m 5s):
When we went the cost of the ticket for a one day pass for Disneyland, Shanghai was only $60. What a savings compared to the American parks and

2 (3m 15s):
It half off.

4 (3m 16s):
I know when we bought that, I was so excited. I was like, oh my gosh, like 60 bucks, what is steel? Yeah.

1 (3m 22s):
We’ve looked online and the prices have gone up. I don’t know what they are now, but man, was it a steal for us? When we went,

4 (3m 28s):
I think there are about 75 now. And since we went, because we went within the first year of it opening, it was a brand new park at the time we had gone, it was literally I think month 10 or 11. Yeah.

3 (3m 39s):
After, because they had all the one year memorability,

4 (3m 43s):
It was one year because it was still with the first year of the park opening because we went in June of 17. And I think it opened in may of 16.

2 (3m 51s):
No, we went in may of 2017.

4 (3m 53s):
Oh. And it opened in June of 16. Excuse me. So we’re on the 11th month. Yeah. But now the price has actually gone up to, I believe $75. But as with all Disney parks are doing these days, they’re actually charging more or less, depending on peak season non-peak season. So your price is really going to vary depending on when you go. But nonetheless, going to be substantially cheaper than what you would pay here in the United States.

3 (4m 20s):
Yeah. And even though everything is in Chinese, you can still get around without any issues. You can’t read the signs or hear what they’re saying, but you know, it’s pretty much all the same. Keep your hands in the cart.

4 (4m 32s):
They have English maps. So we’re good to go. I think anything Disney, they’re going to have maps of any language. So you’re going to be able to find your way over.

3 (4m 39s):
That’s pretty funny to hear all the characters that, you know, speaking Chinese.

2 (4m 43s):
Yeah. Like when we were on pirates of the Caribbean and Johnny Depp is talking to you in Chinese

4 (4m 47s):

2 (4m 48s):
Mandarin and Mandarin. And then like, even when you’re in the castle and Cinderella is speaking to you in Mandarin, you’re just like, oh, It’s so different,

4 (4m 57s):
But fun.

2 (4m 57s):

1 (4m 58s):
So once you decide that you’re going to next step is deciding how to get to the part. So the four of us, we personally used a cab to get to the park because we were staying 30 to 40 minutes away from the park. And the taxi was very cheap. It was only $20 for the whole ride to get the four of us there.

2 (5m 15s):
So divided by four that’s a $5 ride to Disney.

4 (5m 18s):
Yeah. It was really inexpensive. And we were thinking at first, when I was doing the research before we had gone again, we were in China on a guided tour. So our tour guide actually advised us against taking the Metro, which was my original plan. He said, no, no, no, no, no. You’re going to go in the morning. It’s going to be during rush hour. Definitely just take a taxi. They’re very, very inexpensive. So we took his advice to do that and took the cab instead. So the hotel concierge was able to call us a taxi. We were able to get into it. And one of the things that I would recommend, if anybody is going to go to Shanghai, Disneyland, or just be in Shanghai in general, now we’re hotel gave us a card that had the address.

4 (6m 2s):
And then on the back of the card in Mandarin, it said, please take me here. And then it was the address of our hotel. And it says, I’m staying at this hotel.

3 (6m 10s):
So we safety peanuts. You Jamal’s shirt just in case he got lost.

2 (6m 16s):
It’s not our hotel. Like all the hotels are basically going to have that business card because they know that the taxi drivers don’t speak English. And more than likely the, you know, tourists speaking Mandarin.

4 (6m 26s):
And if they don’t have that card Astrid concierge, because a lot of the major hotels will have somebody that can speak your language or English and they can write a card like that for you. But we took that just if anybody’s not going to take the taxi and wants to take something else, you can get to Disneyland via the Shanghai Metro, you would take line 11 or they have several bus lines, line 50 51 and 52 that take you to Shanghai Disneyland.

2 (6m 53s):
And that’s the Pudong bus line. Correct. So make sure that you get there early, pull a Clark w Griswold get there before it opens before anyone is fair and stay until they kick you out.

3 (7m 5s):
You’re not going to want to leave any earlier than that.

4 (7m 7s):
No, I mean, if you’re going to be in China, you can’t leave Shanghai Disney early. It might be the one and only time in your life. You’re going to be there. So you gotta be there from park open to park close.

1 (7m 18s):
And before you get to the park, before the park opens, there is a ton of people already there waiting and see, you want to save your spot in line and you want to hold your spot aggressively. Like, don’t let people cut in front of you because they will.

4 (7m 31s):
We saw several people attempt to try to do something like that. Just got to stand your ground. I’ve kind of spread out my arms. Like you will not pass.

2 (7m 39s):
I remember in Tron, there were two girls who were trying to pass us. And I just kept like pushing back that like, are you kidding, man?

4 (7m 45s):
Yeah. Like even in the line inside the parks, people would try to like jump you and get in front of you. And like, whoa, I’m in line.

1 (7m 52s):
Typically we were four strong, but once Casha and Ryan got their tickets, they joined us. And so we were six strong holding our place in line.

2 (7m 59s):
And then, you know what we did when they opened the gates, we ran.

3 (8m 4s):
Does that happen at all? Disneylands or was it just Shanghai?

4 (8m 8s):
I mean, you’re always going to find those type of people that are kind of the cutters and want to get the most out of it

3 (8m 14s):

4 (8m 14s):
Do it. Oh, the running

2 (8m 16s):
Moran at Disneyland with our cousin while lead, when we took him.

4 (8m 19s):
But I mean,

1 (8m 20s):
I would say it happens on every part. Yeah.

4 (8m 21s):
It happens kind of at every park, they try to really enforce it so that you don’t strongly here in the American parks over there. I didn’t really see a strong enforcement to not, but no one’s running around all day. It’s just kind of at park opening. Everyone’s all excited. So it’s that initial let’s run in

3 (8m 38s):
Shanghai. They like to run.

2 (8m 40s):
Yeah. That’s the major difference? I would say like the American parks you run when they open up the gates. Whereas in Shanghai, I felt like you constantly see people running all day long. That’s cool.

3 (8m 50s):
I got around

2 (8m 50s):
Him strong

1 (8m 51s):
And actually we did that. We were like, let’s, let’s be like the Chinese.

3 (8m 56s):
We ran a little bit.

4 (8m 57s):
I remember at one point, I think we all kind of grabbed hands and did like a little room and we were like having a magical day.

2 (9m 4s):
So fun. As soon as the park opened. Yeah. We pretty much went in and we ran to Tron and I remember Jamal was having a freak out that people weren’t running as fast as he was. And just kind of scoffing that they’re going to slow us down.

4 (9m 18s):
Yeah. Well, who is not? No, no. I’m still lost on what Zaina was trying to say. Where you saying I was having a freak out at you guys for not keeping pace with me or you talk, so what are you talking about that

2 (9m 33s):
You were frustrated that people weren’t keeping pace with us.

4 (9m 36s):
Oh, Kim Brittany Casha Ryan, is that what you’re talking about? That’s

2 (9m 41s):
What I’m talking

4 (9m 41s):
About. I don’t recall that.

3 (9m 43s):
You never seem to recall.

4 (9m 46s):
I think you guys over-exaggerate them. They’re not freakouts, but nonetheless, we’re having a magical episode and magical day. So we don’t need to highlight on any of those types of freakouts, if anything, but one thing that I just want to touch on, obviously this is a Disneyland park. It is in Shanghai. So to quote the tagline of Disney, how they describe the park, distinctively Disney yet distinctively Chinese. So a lot of things are the same, but a lot of things are different about the park. There’s still going to be your castle at the center. There’s still your fantasy land tomorrow land, but that’s really kind of where it ends for Shanghai Disneyland.

4 (10m 27s):
When you enter the park, they have something similar to what we have here in the United States, which is going to be main street USA. But over there they don’t call it main street USA. They actually call it Mickey avenue. And on top of that, anyone who’s a Disney geek, such as myself who listens to this is going to know the typical hub and spoke wheel, which is indicative of any Disney park, which is the center in front of the castle. That just leads out to all the lands. Well, instead of having the traditional hub and spoke like they do an, all the Disney parks here, they actually have, what’s called the gardens of imagination in front of the castle, which is an 11 acre garden that features the 12 animals of the Chinese Zodiac.

4 (11m 10s):
And what’s unique about this too, is in this area, they actually have rides. So they have the carousel as well as Dumbo out there. Whereas in other Disney parks, they

3 (11m 19s):
Don’t get to go on Dumbo.

4 (11m 20s):
I’d think we bypass Dumbo. I know

3 (11m 24s):
What the

4 (11m 25s):
Hell we were busy doing all the big Rides.

3 (11m 28s):
We’ve got to go back.

4 (11m 29s):
Well, we got to go back in general. Definitely. But on top of that too, there is no adventure land. They have an adventure aisle instead. And instead of frontier land, there’s a treasure Cove. So a lot of similarities, but some differences as well.

1 (11m 44s):
And just one thing to know, they don’t have major staple attractions, such as space, mountain, it’s a small world or jungle cruise in the Shanghai Disney park. You’ll find them in the parks in America, but you will not find them in Shanghai Disney.

4 (11m 58s):
Another thing that Shanghai Disneyland does not have is haunted mansion. And the reason why they do that as to avoid references to departed spirits and the afterlife, because the differences between traditional Chinese and American culture is those topics are taboo and Chinese culture. So that’s why there’s no haunted mansion.

3 (12m 16s):
What Rides does Shanghai have that the American parks don’t

4 (12m 20s):
So great question. The one that we absolutely love was Tron, which they had, it’s their version of space, mountain. So over in Asian countries, Japan, China Tron, the series is quite popular. So they actually have that as their version of space mountain, but instead of it being through space and you’re in a rocket, you’re on your light cycles, that’s where Zayna claims I had a freak out with people not being able to keep up. Yeah. I don’t recall.

3 (12m 50s):
I had a freak out on the ride.

4 (12m 53s):
Well, you’re scared of roller coasters or you’re not Kim.

3 (12m 56s):
Yeah. I’m not into them. And this one went upside down, right? No,

2 (12m 59s):
No, not this one.

3 (12m 60s):

2 (13m 1s):
So Tron was the first ride that we went on and you do have a locker there to put your stuff because you can’t take your stuff onto the Rides

3 (13m 9s):
Because it does go like it does a turn that basically puts you upside down, even though it does it.

4 (13m 15s):
Yeah. But to touch on what Xena was saying about the lockers, realistically, this is their version of space mountain, but you’re not sitting in a rocket style car. If anyone’s familiar with the Tron series, they have their light cycles, which are pretty much motorcycles that they actually race on. And so the ride vehicle is set up to be like a motorcycle. So you’re really bent over. So there is no floor for you to put any of your belongings. So before you go in, they do have complimentary lockers for you to put backpacks and things like that. There is a little cubby, if you will, where you can maybe put your phone that opens up on your ride vehicle, but that’s really about all the space it has for you.

4 (13m 58s):
Any big bag, they’re not going to let you take on. There’s no place to put it on the floor. You have to put it in those lockers. But when I wrote that, holy shit, I said to myself, why don’t they have these at any of the American parks?

2 (14m 10s):
It was so fun.

4 (14m 12s):
I loved it. I loved getting off and seeing the photos and just seeing Kim space being fucking scared, shitless, the

3 (14m 20s):
Photo danger, ninja danger.

2 (14m 22s):
Yeah. You know what though? She pushed past her fear and she didn’t let her fear make her decision for

3 (14m 28s):
Her wanting to sit out and you guys wouldn’t let me.

4 (14m 31s):
Yeah. I can’t even believe you were talking crazy like that. You were thinking like, oh, let me just sit out on the ride. So we forced you and then you ended up loving it, right? Yeah.

3 (14m 39s):
Well, I F I hated it the first time, but then we went again and I was like, okay, it’s not that bad. And then we went again and then I was like, let’s go again.

2 (14m 49s):
I loved when we got off and is the first time that we wrote it. Right. And so Jamal, Brittany, me, Casha Ryan. We’re like, oh my gosh, that’s so amazing. And like, you look at Kim getting off and she’s like shaking. And she’s like, look at my hands guys. And her hands are white because she was holding on. So

4 (15m 8s):
For a while, holding onto the motorcycle handles,

2 (15m 11s):
She was such a trooper.

1 (15m 13s):
You know, when you go on other Rides and you get scared, you get to like, hold onto someone else. And on Tron, you really don’t because you have to Mount the light cycle, which is like the motorcycle and they lean you forward. So you’re reaching forward to grab onto the handlebars. And that’s your only security. So if you get scared, you like, you can’t move. There’s no moving out of the position you’re in.

2 (15m 36s):
Yeah. Cause there’s a back on you too. Like it’s pushy. Like you’re not just like riding a bike, like riding a bike, like you’re distracted on the back. Yeah.

1 (15m 45s):
Pushes down and it kind of straps you into place, but you can’t reach out and like grab someone’s hand it like,

2 (15m 52s):

3 (15m 52s):
We did raise our hands up in some of the pictures.

1 (15m 55s):
Yeah. But you’re not like I can hold onto you because I’m scared.

3 (15m 59s):

2 (15m 59s):
Well, I would have held your hand if you wanted me to hold your hand.

4 (16m 3s):
So, I mean, Tron was their version of space bound. I loved it. The good news is magic kingdom at Disney world is actually building themselves a Tron, Brittany and I were just in magic kingdom and there we saw the construction, but unfortunately it was not open while we were there. And I’m highly disappointed about

2 (16m 21s):
That. Got to make another trip

4 (16m 22s):
By the, bringing it to America. That’s the good news.

2 (16m 25s):
So what was your guys’s favorite ride

3 (16m 28s):
Pirates of the Caribbean?

4 (16m 30s):
That’s tough. I mean, I really love Tron, but I will agree with you guys on pirates of the Caribbean.

1 (16m 36s):
It’s completely different than what the layout is in America. The layout in America is very slow and

2 (16m 43s):
20 minutes long,

1 (16m 45s):
Very slow and long. And you could fall. I mean like I love it, but you can fall asleep on it where this was just such an interactive experience where you’re one year in a larger boat and two, they put you in a room where it’s all digitalized movie clips on the screen and you feel like you’re in the movie and it starts to move the boat. So like the boat, you know, in America is just goes forward. This boat went forward. It went backwards. It went through a little scene where you get swept under another boat.

2 (17m 17s):
It’s very, multi-directional so cool. I think we passed by fire too. When the boat blew up,

4 (17m 23s):
Well, the boat blew up

2 (17m 27s):
On the wrong.

4 (17m 29s):
Well, I didn’t, I didn’t realize what you were trying to say pass through fire, but no. Yeah, there is a seed. So any pirates of the Caribbean ride that you’ve written, if you’ve been fortunate enough to be a Disneyland Paris or Tokyo Disney or any of the Disney parks here in the us, whatever you think you know about pirates of the Caribbean, throw it out the window. This ride is completely different on a whole nother scale. So like Brittany was saying there is some traditional scenes, but for the most part, everything is through a visual screen. That, I mean, it’s so hard to explain. You have to experience it. But one of the coolest parts, like you said, there is a battle scene where you’re between the two ships and it’s almost like the ships squeeze in on you.

4 (18m 11s):
And that’s when the fireball explodes and then you fall and have the big drop. It’s really intense.

2 (18m 17s):
Yeah. My best friend is a Disney enthusiast. And I remember him telling me that this looks super cool and you can see video footage on YouTube. So I did watch video footage on YouTube before we went and I still didn’t really understand it. And it’s not until you’re on it. That you’re just like, wow, this is amazing.

3 (18m 36s):
It was right after Tron that we did that one. I was scared thinking it was going to be another rollercoaster. So the whole time I’m like on edge freaking out. And then we go through it and I was like, that was so cool. Let’s do it again. So I can relax this time.

1 (18m 48s):
One other thing that sets it apart from the parks in America is there is a photo opportunity on this ride.

2 (18m 53s):
Yes. And the photo comes at the moment that you least expect it.

4 (18m 60s):
Yeah. It’s when you fall. And what’s interesting too, about the fall is that’s where they actually turn the boat around and you fall backwards. So like Brittany was saying, you move forward sideways through the ride, but this time they actually will turn the boat around and you fall backwards. And that’s when the photo was taken. I know we just touched on the ride, but wasn’t it. When we were in line for pirates, when you guys bought your Mickey ears, I

1 (19m 23s):
Think it was,

2 (19m 25s):
I don’t have Mickey ears guys, but now I do because they sold them to me for a dollar in the park. So that’s a big difference in the United States. You will never find people selling counterfeit ears, but in China, like it is like that. They don’t even try to hide it. It’s so obvious that these are counterfeit, but you know that they’re counterfeit because of the ears are closer together. Whereas the true ears have a little bit more space between them.

3 (19m 51s):
I went to the store and bought some because I got pink ones. It’s like they’re pink and Bejeweled.

4 (19m 58s):
Do you remember how much, the real ones that you bought from a vendor wasn’t there?

3 (20m 3s):
I think they were like 20 bucks.

4 (20m 4s):
Oh, so kind of on par with the American prices,

3 (20m 8s):
Maybe there are 15. I don’t know, but it was a lot more than $1. Yeah.

4 (20m 11s):
Yeah. So Brittany bought a pair for a dollar and she still

3 (20m 14s):
Wants them.

1 (20m 15s):
I do have a pair, but I figured why not buy a different style for

2 (20m 19s):
Dollar? Now you have to pair

4 (20m 22s):
Another one of the really cool rides that they had over there was soaring over the horizon. So this ride, I don’t know if it’s unique to Shanghai. So here in California, we have soar and over California and originally it’s a ride where you’re in front of a giant screen and literally soaring over scenes that take place in California through Yosemite over the ocean, big Sur, other places like that. And they have that ride in Florida, just as well at Epcot, but they redid it to be soaring over the horizon, which shows lots of scenes from everywhere in the world.

4 (21m 3s):
Now I know that the Disney parks here in the United States, we’re going to be moving to that model. But I don’t know if the Shanghai Disney has different images than what they have here in the U S since they’ve redone that,

2 (21m 15s):
And just to specify soaring over California is at California adventures. That’s I couldn’t think of it. It’s like California adventures. It’s not actual Disneyland.

4 (21m 23s):
Right. But Disney ride, nonetheless. But that was actually the longest line that we waited in that day.

2 (21m 29s):
Yeah. It was like 60 minutes to 90 minutes. It was a long,

4 (21m 32s):
I really thought Tron was going to be the longest, but it wasn’t. Yeah.

2 (21m 36s):
But I mean, Tron and pirates of the Caribbean personal favorite, those were top for me. What

3 (21m 40s):
About that buzz light year?

2 (21m 42s):
Oh, I love bus. Let your too. I just can’t help it. Oh my goodness. You guys here in California, Disneyland, I got over a million and that was the time that the pictures weren’t working and it says lost in transmission. So to this day, I swear I’ve gotten over a million, but no one believes me. Jamal got over a million on this one.

1 (22m 1s):
They had a way better laser guns at this Disney park than they do at the one in California.

4 (22m 8s):
Yeah. So for context, to get a million at California, Disneyland really, really tough. I’ve never been able to do it. So when Zayna says she did it, you know,

2 (22m 17s):

4 (22m 18s):
A little skeptical. We’re not really skeptical. We give her a hard time because they lost the photo on that one. But here at the Shanghai park, the guns that they have, or the laser cannons, whatever you want to call it, to shoot at the targets, they’re a lot better. You can actually see the laser coming out of it. So it helps you with your target aiming, and you can get a lot higher scores. So I scored over a million, but I’m not impressed with it because of how easy those target guns are to use.

3 (22m 47s):
We did that right. A few times

1 (22m 50s):
I enjoyed it so much more in the Shanghai Disney park, because I could see what I was actually aiming at and knew that I was actually aiming at correct things. I feel like in Disneyland, it’s very difficult to know if you got the points or not,

4 (23m 3s):
Not only that, like I said earlier, Britney and I were just at Disney world and at magic kingdom park at Disney world, their buzz light year. Oh my gosh. So hard. I couldn’t even crack like 5,000 they’re shooting. Canon is so hard to actually use. You can’t even lift it up or off. So I agree with Brittany sentiment when she says, this is the best buzz light year of all the parks. And just for a little bit of context for our listeners, Brittany and I have been to every Disney park except for Hong Kong.

2 (23m 33s):
And what I love about buzz light year, well one, okay. A little bit of context, Kim and I rode together Cassia and Ryan rode together. So of course, Jamal and Brittany are gonna ride together. And at the end, when you look at the pictures, there’s Kim and I looking all over the place trying to find, you know, I mean, you just forget about the camera, right? So Kim and I are looking in different directions and then Jamal and Brittany’s picture come up and it’s just so perfectly posed. And I don’t know how, but they always figure out where the camera is on the first time and they have the cutest picture. So then that’s why we did it several times because Brittany was like, oh, write it with Kim. And I’ll help her find the camera and Jamal right. Of Zayna and he’ll help her. Yeah. Oh my goodness.

4 (24m 13s):
Yeah, we wrote it so many times towards the end of the night when no one was left in line, we literally walk right on. Obviously we had to walk through the whole line queue, but no one was in front of us. It was less than five minutes. Wait. Yeah. So it was really great that way.

1 (24m 26s):
One of the other rights that we rode was the river rapids and it, although it wasn’t my favorite ride, it was so much fun,

3 (24m 33s):
So much fun.

4 (24m 35s):
I loved this ride.

2 (24m 36s):
It was like the experience, I think, because it was the six of us. And then they put other people on there too.

4 (24m 44s):
Well, the four of us with cash and

2 (24m 45s):
Ryan, right. And then they put other people. And so the people that they put on didn’t speak English and obviously we don’t speak Mandarin. And yet we were, I don’t know how to. Yeah. Like we were, you didn’t need language to connect between the two different cultures because we were having so much fun. Just laughing.

4 (25m 8s):
Yeah. I know what you’re saying. You just share that connection. Have fun with people like it trends versus language barriers. Yes. Yeah. No, that word was super fun.

1 (25m 17s):
And we were scared because before you get on the right, people are selling ponchos because you can get wet on this rapid ride. And we’re like, oh my God, how wet are we going to get? We didn’t bring a change of clothes. What are we going to do? And we didn’t buy the ponchos cause we’re saving a buck,

2 (25m 32s):
But someone got off the ride and I stuck my hand out and they gave me the poncho.

3 (25m 38s):
As people were getting off the ride, they were just leaving their ponchos for people

4 (25m 42s):
More the poncho.

2 (25m 43s):
I think I

4 (25m 45s):
Did. Did you?

2 (25m 47s):

4 (25m 48s):
Yeah. Yeah. You guys were all, you know, no one remember that.

2 (25m 53s):
No, I just remember we had a poncho because we gave it back to the crowd when we go.

4 (25m 58s):
And I think I I’m positive. I was the one to wear it because you girls all decided like, oh fuck it. Like, you know, if we get wet, we get wet. You know, it’s going to be part of the experience. And I was like, I’m carrying the backpack. Like the last thing I want to do is be wet and carry a backpack. So yeah, you kind of use that to cover the poncho, but he didn’t even need it. I felt like none of us got really soaked on it, but I was the non gentleman that day. And didn’t give any other girls, the poncho. I selfishly want it.

1 (26m 24s):
I just want to get a little information about Jamal in general, Jamal hates being wet. He doesn’t like getting in cold water. He doesn’t like to get in the water at the beach. Jamal will take a poncho at any point upon

2 (26m 38s):
The reason why it was so fun is because you are spinning so fast on this ride. I don’t know what it is, but this, these rapids like really spin you fast. And the water is splashing around, but you don’t get wet. You’re kind of like a duck. You don’t get wet on this ride. And I think that’s what made it so funny was because you’re spinning so fast. You see the water splash and everyone’s like, oh my God, oh my God, who’s going to get wet and no one,

4 (27m 2s):
Well, there’s a way to design water rides to know how high the water comes up to the amount of flow or splash that you’re actually going to get. So I think probably just in China, it’s not necessarily their thing culturally to be out and want to get wet in public. So I think they purposely designed it that way, that you don’t get super, super wet on it. But I think that’s why it was really popular for everyone to have the ponchos. Because if you hear in the United States ride splash mountain or other water rides, I mean, not that people don’t have them, but not in the masses that you saw over there having it. Do any of you ladies remember the backstory of that ride? Or am I the only Disney nerd that knows the backstory to that ride?

2 (27m 41s):
I didn’t even know there was a backstory. Well,

4 (27m 43s):
Well with any Disney ride, there’s always going to be a backstory and I love Disney so much that I actually, you know, try to pay attention or if I’m about to be going to a park that I’ve never been to kind of like read up on it. So this ride is actually in adventure aisle, which is again their version of adventure land, but not themed kind of like to jungles or anything exotic like here in the American parks. And so the backstory is that people who are inhabiting adventure aisle are researchers, and they’re trying to study the flow of the water off the mountain. And legend has it that there’s a creature that actually protects the water coming off of the rapids in the mountain.

4 (28m 23s):
So none of you really remember the giant crocodile creature that takes like a snap at us. When we go through the cave in that ride.

2 (28m 30s):
I don’t know why, but I don’t remember

4 (28m 31s):
That. Well, I feel like knowing the background story to any Disney ride gives it a lot more context for you to enjoy it. But yeah, definitely. If you were planning to go in or don’t want the ride to be spoiled, you can look at the YouTube, but there’s a big, giant crocodilian like figure that is supposedly the protector of the waters. And he takes a big snap at us. I can’t believe that w we were laughing the whole time. It doesn’t surprise me. And then when you guys remember that, then I guess that’s just the Disney nerd in me.

1 (28m 57s):
Well, while we’re on the subject of rights in general, Shanghai Disney does have the FastPass system in their park, except it’s a little bit different than here in California.

4 (29m 8s):
It’s for anyone who’s not familiar with what bass passes are necessarily, they are tickets that you can get that reserves your spot in line. So you can bypass the majority of the weight. So here in California, you actually take your park ticket. You take it to the ride that you want the fast pass for. Now, granted all Rides don’t have FastPass availability, but you stick it in a little kiosk and it will spit you out a ticket that tells you your return time and Florida. They have a very similar structure, but also in Florida, you can reserve your FastPasses online the day before if you put in your ticket, but at Shanghai Disney, you cannot do that. Their FastPass system is different.

4 (29m 49s):
They actually have one kiosk in each land. And that kiosk is where you need to go to get the fast pass. So it’s not at the attraction that you want to go to it’s at specifically at that kiosk. And on top of that, you could only get fast passes for the rides that are in that land. So for example, if we were in adventure aisle, you couldn’t get a Tron fast pass at the kiosk because Tron is located in tomorrow land. So that’s one thing to take into consideration to know how to use their system.

1 (30m 20s):
And one thing that I learned at the end of the night was they actually have a thing called Disney premier access. And this is a unlimited fast pass that you can use for any ride. At any time, you don’t have to return in a set window time and you do have to pay an upgrade for this. And the cost varies on the season. But I did see that at the end of the night. And I was like, oh my God, what if we had it? Wasn’t that expensive? When we went, it was like less than $20 a person. And I thought, oh my God, what if we had gotten this and got into the line of every single ride that day? How much more riots could we have written?

3 (30m 52s):
Right. We probably would have done Dumbo in the carousel.

2 (30m 55s):
Yeah. And we could have done the sore and ride probably like three or four times.

4 (30m 60s):
No. So I think when we first went, they were unlimited. They have actually changed it now to where again, you can buy a solo fast pass for one ride, any returned time, or you can buy for all the rides that have fast passes, but it is not an unlimited use. You get one per ride. So I want to make sure that that’s clear when we were there at the time, it was unlimited, but they have since changed that system. But nonetheless, it doesn’t tell you a timeframe that you have to return it. It would allow you to plan your day more accordingly to do whatever it is that you want.

1 (31m 32s):
So after you’re running around the park, go in from ride or ride, you work up an appetite.

2 (31m 38s):
Yeah. I was just thinking about that. And like, when are we going to eat?

4 (31m 42s):
Well, one thing about Disney parks or any amusement park for that matter is I’d definitely love to find what type of unique foods that they have. And especially in a place like Shanghai or any foreign Disney park, you’re always going to find interesting stuff.

2 (31m 55s):
Yeah. Like right outside of pirates of the Caribbean, they have seafood churros.

1 (32m 0s):
Did you try one?

2 (32m 1s):
I passed.

4 (32m 3s):
They didn’t really give too much of a description. Other than saying that they were seafood. Chiro said none of us really ate it, but the more I looked at the photo and even go back and look at photos online. Now I don’t even think they’re cheros. I think they’re actually French fries at the bottom top was seafood. And then, you know, a sauce of sorts, but it may be a chiro suite that I’m not too sure. So if any of our listeners ever go let us know what they taste like, I’ve watched some YouTube videos where people talk about it and it’s hit or miss, but it depends on your preference I guess,

2 (32m 32s):
But you know what else they have? They’ve got Mickey mouse, pizza

4 (32m 36s):

3 (32m 37s):
I can’t resist animal shaped pizza.

4 (32m 40s):
Well, I mean, any Disney park will have the Mickey shaped pizza, but what distinguished it here was obviously the unique flavors I know I can speak for Zayna 100%. When I say her favorite was the Peking duck pizza.

2 (32m 52s):
I couldn’t get enough.

4 (32m 53s):

2 (32m 55s):
You guys, I’m not a duck fan.

4 (32m 56s):
You’re not a duck fan after our trip to Beijing, huh?

2 (32m 60s):
After our, he conducted or where I at overindulged and more duck than I could eat in the lifetime. Cause if you’re like me and you want to eat the Peking duck, they do have other flavors. Like they had barbecue, pork and pineapple prawn and crab meat, pizza, and spicy chicken pizza.

4 (33m 16s):
We had a few snacks. We didn’t really have a sit down meal and the park because what did we do instead? I know this was Kim’s pet project for our Disney trip.

3 (33m 25s):
So usually when we go on trips, I do look up if they have afternoon tea available. And if they do and we have the time and it works out, I want us to go do it. Brittany loves afternoon tea we’ll have afternoon tea. Well, I think Zane is still on the fence, but this one was pretty cool because it was across the wishing star lake. And you had to take a ferry to get there. And then when you’re there, you have the view from across the lake of the park, which is pretty cute. So at the Disneyland hotel, at the Baucus lounge, you can go in there from like three to five and get your afternoon tea. And it’s a tea for two. So we got two of them, you know, most afternoon teas.

3 (34m 6s):
We’ll give you a nice set of sandwiches, scones, all the toppings for the scones, a few desserts and then your tea. This one was really heavy on the dessert side. Okay.

4 (34m 16s):
Yeah. Not a lot of savory items for this afternoon tea.

3 (34m 19s):
We did. It came with champagne though. It did. And that was pretty cool with two glasses of wine.

4 (34m 26s):
So our friends cash and Ryan, they didn’t come with us to do this. They actually stayed in the park and squeezed in a few more rides at a couple of things. Maybe the road, Dumbo Kim at that time. I really don’t know, But they didn’t come with us. So it was just us four, but the afternoon tea. I mean, I won’t say it was the best afternoon tea I’ve ever had, but it was definitely a unique experience to do it at a Disney park, let alone in Shanghai. And it made it all the more special, because again, to get to the Disneyland hotel where it was located in, you had to take that water taxi across the lake. It gave you an amazing view when you were at the Disneyland hotel of seeing Shanghai Disney on the opposite side of the lake was really, really pretty, but nonetheless, a unique experience to do.

3 (35m 10s):
They did have the best team I’ve ever had in my entire life. The tea that I picked was a vanilla Rose Black tea, and it was so good. I dream about it every day. I’ve never been able to find it since

2 (35m 23s):
Just to touch base on like the really important stuff about the Afternoon tea. We did mention you get two glasses of champagne. Remember the afternoon tea is for too. So it’s not like I get two glasses of champagne. It’s Kim gets one and I get one because we split it the point Cena. So the important stuff.

4 (35m 43s):
But then so after the afternoon tea, we headed back into the park to finish up our day. We wrote a lot more rides. I think at this point we had pretty much written everything that we wanted to ride. And at this point it was redoing the highlights all over again. So that’s when we rewrote Tron pirates buzz light year over and over again, just as well.

2 (36m 4s):
Yeah. When we finally ran through the part, wasn’t it, we were going to meet up with Cassia and Ryan at a certain time to

3 (36m 10s):
Do the river rapids one.

2 (36m 13s):
That’s right. And so we were like, oh my goodness, guys, we have this amount of time before we meet Casha and Ryan, I think we can squeeze in pirates of the Caribbean. So do you guys want to make a run for it? And we’re like, okay, let’s do it. So we ran holding hands on a

4 (36m 30s):
Chain when we did our run through the park

2 (36m 33s):
To pirates of the Caribbean. And as soon as we get there, we find Casha and Ryan who had the same ingenious idea since we met up with them early,

4 (36m 44s):
And then we made our way over to the river rapids

2 (36m 47s):
And then we ran in a link holding six hands, not just,

4 (36m 54s):
I was really fun, but one thing I also want to mention too, just kind of going back to talk about some of the differences between Shanghai Disney and other Disney parks. One thing to note is that here in the United States, and even in Tokyo and Paris, where they have other international Disney parks, the castle is either usually Cinderella’s castle sleeping beauty castle here in Shanghai. It’s actually the enchanted storybook castle. And so it doesn’t belong to any Disney princess. It actually represents all the Disney princesses. And this is actually the tallest Disney castle in the world at 200 feet, which took over magic kingdom in Florida.

4 (37m 38s):
So really unique castle to see you there. Well,

2 (37m 40s):
How tall is the one in magic kingdom in Florida?

4 (37m 42s):
Like 177. Oh, wow. So I mean it beat it by like 20 some odd feet, but nonetheless it’s the tallest Disney castle in the world. And if you’ve ever been to Disneyland and the smallest castle Here in California, and then I know we talked about food, but one thing that I didn’t mention when we were talking about the food is rushed. Eating is not something that is a cultural norm in China. So yes, you can find takeaway food to eat, but a lot of the dining areas are more conducive for families to have long sit down meals, especially when they come with the elders. So grandparents, they like to actually sit and have their meals.

4 (38m 24s):
So you’ll find a lot more restaurants that are catered to be sit down style than on the go, which I think is a really unique thing as well. And more picnic and dining spaces within the park

3 (38m 33s):
In talking about the castles, since we’re basically at the end of our night, can we talk about the fireworks and the show?

1 (38m 39s):
It was such a nice show. All of the fireworks going off and the big castle in the background, it was truly magical.

3 (38m 48s):
It was so magical, but they were projecting onto the castle. Does show, do they do that at all? The parks?

4 (38m 54s):
It depends on the park. I’ve have seen it where they start to do the projections on the castle. But I think what they have in Shanghai was a unique one. But nonetheless, they do have the shows where they project Disney characters and certain scenes onto the castle. And then behind it, you know, you have your strobe lights coming out of the castle, fireworks above. And so it was a really magical experience, no pun intended to see the evening show. But after that, that’s when we ran to Tron and buzz light year and rewrote them all like five, six times in a row to close out our night.

1 (39m 30s):
Yeah. So if you guys do go to Shanghai, Disneyland, I do recommend staying until park closing. It was completely worth the experience. Yes, we were exhausted. But when else are you going to be in Shanghai, Disney again

2 (39m 41s):
And real quickly let’s touch on something super important. The toilets,

4 (39m 46s):
Oh yes. We didn’t talk about

3 (39m 48s):
It through an episode without talking about toilets because

2 (39m 50s):
It’s so fascinating. So, you know, if you listen back on episode three, when we were in China, we did talk about the fact that they have the squat, the holes in the ground where you squat

4 (40m 1s):

2 (40m 1s):
Traditional squatting toilets. Thank you, Jamal. And then in the hotels, of course you’ll find your standard Western toilets. So at this park, even though it’s barely a year old, you have both

4 (40m 13s):
Yeah. They gave you options that you can use. So don’t be taken aback if you’re going there and thinking, oh, this is Disneyland. They’re going to have Western style ones. They do. But only a few. The majority of them in there are still the traditional Eastern style squatting toilets for you to use.

1 (40m 28s):
And again, we’ve mentioned this before, but sometimes when there are Western platelet, they will step on the toilet to squat on it. So using the Western toilet might not be the best because there might be shoe prints on them.

4 (40m 42s):
It could be a little rough, even at Disneyland, I guess. Any final thoughts about the Disney park ladies?

1 (40m 49s):
Yeah. Shanghai Disney was just so underrated

2 (40m 52s):
In my opinion, because I haven’t been to all the Disney parks. I haven’t even been to the parks and Florida, but this is my favorite Disney park and it was the least crowded. And it was the cheapest.

3 (41m 2s):
Yeah. I was, you know, you guys are really big into Disney, but I’m not, I, I love Disneyland though, but I hadn’t been to Disneyland since I was, I was younger. I was a kid. And so it wasn’t really that amped up on it. I was kind of bummed. We weren’t going to be going on the river cruise. That was the optional tour on our tour that day. And I was kind of like, Hmm, whatever. I guess I’ll go with you guys. And I am a fucking Disney fan. Now I love that place. I want to go back just to go to that park again.

4 (41m 34s):
I definitely want to go back just as well. And as I mentioned earlier, Brittany and I at least again, have been to all the Disney parks except for the one in Hong Kong, Hong Kong, we’re coming for you soon. But of all the ones that we’ve been to by and far Shanghai Disneyland has been the best Disneyland here in California. We’ll have a special place in my heart. One because it’s the original two. It’s my home Disney park because we’re California natives. But in terms of just best park in terms of size space rides, even, I can’t even describe Shanghai Disney, you just have to go and experience it. I loved it. And one last thing I do also want to say, I think we missed this when we were talking about the fast passes and the premier access where you can actually buy the fast passes.

4 (42m 23s):
If you have the Shanghai Disney app, you can buy them through the app. Or there is a location on Mickey avenue when you first enter the park on the left by city hall where you can buy those passes. So just want to let you know, those are the two routes that you can get those if you were going to do the fast passes battle.

2 (42m 42s):
So after the magical day that we had there in Shanghai Disney, we had to queue up in the line for the cabs. In fact, I think we were going to take the train or what was it? The train or the subway, but it was way too long.

4 (42m 54s):
Yeah. We were going to take the Metro back. But when we got there, the line for the Metro is just so long that we just ended up getting in the taxi line instead to take a taxi back to the hotel. But one of my fondest memories of the park actually happened when we were in the taxi line.

2 (43m 11s):
Yeah. So we can’t fit six into the taxi. So S four took one and then Cassia and Ryan took the other and Cassia and Ryan, they got in their taxi first. And even though they had the hotel card that said, please take me to this hotel in Mandarin. It looked like their driver and the guy who was in charge of the taxi queue, we’re going back and forth about where it was truly. And so the driver wasn’t too confident. So his lack of confidence didn’t inspire confidence in anyone. And so when they drove off, Casha looked back at us in line and her face was just,

4 (43m 51s):
It was a look of dread. Like, I don’t know if I’ll ever see you again,

3 (43m 56s):
Driving away in the cat.

4 (43m 57s):
I’ll never forget that. Look on her face. Like She was genuinely scared.

3 (44m 2s):
It’s like hands on the window face looking out like me

2 (44m 7s):
And everyone in line left too. It was one of those moments where her facial expression transcended language and everyone got what she was saying. And absolutely,

1 (44m 17s):
But we made it to the hotel just a few minutes after them. So exactly we were all fine.

4 (44m 22s):
And that was our last day in China before we flew home. So real, real stellar way to end our time in China, Shanghai, Disney.

2 (44m 30s):
What a great time in China guys together, episode three and this episode here. Awesome.

3 (44m 35s):
Yes, absolutely.

1 (44m 36s):
Well, before we close up this episode, I do want to give a special shout out to my niece. Dasia today is her birthday. So happy birthday Dasia.

3 (44m 47s):
Woo. All right, guys. Thank you so much for listening. We hope you enjoyed going on this trip to Shanghai Disney with us.

4 (44m 54s):
Please subscribe to our podcast, leave a review. Tell us what you like. Tell us what you want to hear and tune in every travel Tuesday as always for new episodes.

2 (45m 4s):
And I say this on every episode, if you want already be sure to follow us on Instagram and Twitter at Travel Squad Podcast,

1 (45m 11s):
Make sure to pack your bags and grab your passports. Next week, we were telling you how to survive a long haul flight.

3 (45m 17s):
Stay tuned for that

4 (45m 19s):

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