If you want some great photos of the parks, bringing camera gear (with a proper bag for storage) is not impossible. There are tons of photographers that bring full on gear- as in multiple cameras, tripods, and lenses. For the regular vacation go-er, this might be too much. (Who wants to carry all that in that Florida heat?) If you're like me, you might be in between iPhone shots and full on camera store on your back.
I like to bring my DSLR (which is this one) to Magic Kingdom and sometimes some other parks if I'm feeling it. But at least once to Magic Kingdom. (The above photo was taken on my DSLR.) I usually bring one lens. If I have the room, but usually not, I might bring one extra. I currently have been leaving this lens on my camera almost exclusively for easy shots since I don't usually have the need to zoom. I find the quality of a single focal lens to be better and this one has a pretty nice wider angle. You might need a zoom lens if you want to photograph parades, but I usually stick to my one lens to keep it simple and light. I also always have a one shoulder camera strap for easy carry. When I'm not using it I'll just put the camera and strap in my backpack. (If you or anyone else in your party aren't carrying some type of bag, you might not want to bring a DSLR.)
Other than my occasional DSLR use, I use a point & shoot for the majority of my videos and photos. (The above photo was taken on a my point and shoot.) I have an older model Sony Cybershot that I've used since 2011 and it still works great. It takes 1080p HD video (which is what I use for vlogging) and does really great in low light, which my DSLR isn't great at since I don't carry a tripod. I also use my iPhone 6 a lot. It takes great pictures and is sometimes easier to grab. (But the zoom is terrible.) (Also- I snapchat constantly! username: mmagenn and end up saving a lot of snapchat photos, too.)
Since my last trip to Disney World, I've acquired a GoPro Hero4 Black which I've used on a recent Disney Cruise and really, really loved it. I'm super excited to try it out in the parks in a few days when I'm visiting Walt Disney World. I usually use my GoPro with the GoPro stick which really just makes it a handle and easier to carry and also converts to a mini tripod. Disney World recently banned selfie sticks from the parks,
Carrying camera gear is a definitely balance based on what kind of photos you want to take away from the parks and what you're willing to carry. If you purchase the Disney Memory Maker and are happy with iPhone shots- no cameras needed and you can probably get away with pockets or fanny packs only! (Plus, you can take bathroom mirror selfies of your awesome new Disney phone case and sweaty hairdo.) I on the other hand really, really like park photos that I post on Instagram during and after my trips as well as this here blog, and I vlog the experience for our Youtube channel. And also for my own keepsake because the parks are updated and changed so frequently that I want to be able to look back on how the parks looked. Luckily, all Disney World rides allow you to bring your backpack on with you, so you lower any risk of losing or getting stolen, if that is of a concern. (Hey- camera gear is expensive!)
What is your camera policy for Disney World trips? Please leave any tips in the comments!