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What is your preferred loose article storage solution at theme parks?

How do you like to store your loose articles at theme parks?

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Matt N

CF Legend
Hi guys. Loose articles and storing them is arguably one of the greater inconveniences of visiting theme parks, however there are many solutions out there to storing your loose articles securely while you’re walking round the park and on the rides. Three of the most popular solutions seem to be cargo trousers, bum bags and backpacks, but I’m sure there are other solutions out there as well. So my question to you today is; when visiting a theme park, what is your preferred way of storing your loose articles? If you could use anything to store the likes of your phone, your wallet/purse, your keys etc while you’re at a theme park, what would you use?

Personally, while I know they’re divisive, I’ll admit I’ve really taken to wearing cargo trousers to theme parks. I have both a pair of cargo trousers and a pair of cargo shorts, so I can pick dependant on the weather, and both are brilliantly practical! The cargo trousers in particular have so many zip pockets and buttoned pockets, so I’ve certainly got no shortage of secure pocketing options, and the cargo trousers mean I can use things like my phone in the queues to take pictures or time throughputs, and then simply slip it back into the zip pocket before getting onto the ride. I know my approach may have to change if I visit somewhere like the USA, whose parks tend to have notoriously strict loose article policies, but for here in the UK at least, cargo trousers work great for me, and are certainly my preferred storage solution!

But what’s your preferred way to store your loose articles when you’re at the parks?


Best Newcomer 2016
Personally I either use a small bag pack to really only have the essentials on me, or a hoodie with zip pockets. I tend to dislike having cargo trousers, all that extra weight in the pockets is weird sometimes!


Staff member
Social Media Team
In general I'm a backpack guy. Primarily for me this is for carrying a combination of my camera and some water - both of which don't easily fit in pockets. For most places that's fine.

The other close second choice option is just to carry the camera bag, as it has enough additional pockets for wallet, phone, keys, etc when needed. Probably close enough to a bum-bag/man-purse to fill that category (it's not a 'small' camera).

I generally do have cargo shorts (although not those super baggy ones), but that's mostly just a personal comfort thing. I don't tend to try and secure loose articles with me on the rides using them.


Strata Poster
Bung it all in a backpack.

I don't like having stuff with me on rides. Even if they're in secured pockets they can: 1. still fall out if you're slightly careless, 2. be uncomfortable depending on restraints.

More importantly, I have too much stuff to fit in pockets alone. I don't like wearing my glasses on big thrill rides (personal choice, despite the fact I know that there's ways to secure them), so I carry around my glasses case. Then a bottle of drink, small snack, etc. If the weather isn't looking at it's best too, a raincoat too. No way that's all going in pockets.


Hyper Poster
If I can get clothes with zips that fit a phone and wallet comfortably then that's the preferred way. If there's a lift hill it's not unusual to keep rechecking everything is zipped up tight. I'm working on remembering that I sorted it already.

If it's easy and free to stash belongings near the station then I'll happily use a small backpack. But it adds a few precious seconds leaving the station which can make all the difference getting in front of the slow walkers.


Mega Poster
I take a minimalist approach. Car keys, a small water bottle and a credit card. An old phone too, although I'll happily leave that behind if I know I'm going to a park that won't let you on some rides with one in your pocket.

Any kind of bag is just too onerous, especially at a park with enforced locker usage. Going bagless can occasionally save quite a bit of time too, and not just with the faff involved at the station - I recently skipped a 30+ minute queue for the bag check at the Thorpe entrance, for instance.


Strata Poster
I used to go bagless with phone and keys in zipped pockets. Now, as I've grown older and tend to take a packed lunch to parks, I will take a small backpack with me, just to hold the lunch and other small items. Having a bag also saves having to get a plastic bag when merch shopping as well. :)


Hyper Poster
I usually carry a very small backpack, which holds my phone, wallet, portable charger, water, and any shirts that I end up buying at the park. It fits in any loose article cubby, which is a big plus as well.


Mega Poster
I've always been a minimalist. Keys and wallet in pants pocket, cell phone in secure pouch, sunglasses with retention strap. Anything else such as cooler with drinks and food will be left in the car.


Mega Poster
Cargo shorts with a zip pocket. Phone(with card holder) credit card, ID, and season pass, car key on one side. Small sunscreen and (since 2021) hand sanitizer on the other. I can't be bothered to faff about with bags, storage bins, and the like. I'd rather have to trek out to my car if I need to change clothes than lug them around the park all day. I'm also not a huge water ride person, so I'm less likely to need to change unless there's weather.


Hyper Poster
I'm a backpack fan, usually you can get away with just one for the group and then you just need to designate a Bag Carrier for each ride to put it into the lockers.
I don't trust cargo trousers on my legs, the middle pockets always seem to fall right in the pinch point between the restraint and seat, and I can't be doing with breaking my phone (especially in such an uncool way)!

Communal backpack also has the benefit that the group's coward can hold on to it while the rest ride something! :p


Giga Poster
I go with a backpack since I usually have a lot of things with me: several water/cola bottles (especially if it's a hot day), bread rolls for a quick bite, portable phone battery, and space to put my wallet and phone so I don't have to faff around with placing them in station bins once boarding. Saves a lot of time having it all ready in a backpack you can just stuff in there and quickly get back to your seat.


Hyper Poster
This is one of the things I dislike most about visiting parks.

Ideally... I'll take a family member or friend who doesn't like thrill rides and they can be the bag holder.

I'll usually put any important stuff in my pockets before leaving my bag on a ride platform. I feel safer with important stuff in my pocket than leaving it unaccompanied.

Secure and free lockers like at Universal are probably best... even though they can be a bit of a faff.

This is one thing I really like about Disney parks - you can take your bags on all the rides.


Matt SR
Staff member
Social Media Team
Shared it in another thread on a similar topic - grateful Eddie Bauer has a great line of fashionable shorts with zipper pockets.

Rob Coasters

Hyper Poster
Two months late to the party but I'll chip in:

For the past couple years I've taken the absolute bare minimum: phone, wallet, the end. That's genuinely it. This whole thing spawned from the Goliath security queues that started existing at the major parks and kind of carried into other parks that don't do that kind of stuff.

On the coastal park trips though I end up bringing a bag along with the zipped pockets because in those cases I end up bringing much more. I actually can't pinpoint a reason to why I bring so much more to coastal parks, but I managed to conclude I bring almost nothing to major parks because less stuff weighs me down when barely getting by in a 75 minute queue.
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