5 Things to Look Forward to in Disney World in 2015!

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Happy New Year! I hope the year brings you much success, happiness, health, and a Disney World vacation. The first of the year brings all sorts of new people looking to plan their 2015 vacations. Now is the time to book your trip for summer, so start your research now.

As every year, Disney will bring some new fun and excitement for 2015. Here are 5 things I’m looking forward to in the new year:

1. The facelift of Hollywood Studios with the removal of the Sorcerer Hat. Every single one of my pictures in my adult life has the hat in the background. I’m very excited to see how big of a change it will make for that park.

2. Visiting the redesigned pool at Wilderness Lodge. Just over 100 days and counting until our next Disney World vacation and it’s to Wilderness Lodge! The new pool and kids play area will be complete by the time we get there in April, so I’m so excited to see the changes!

3. The completion of the Polynesian Village project. While completion date is “spring”, the estimated launch of the new DVC space is scheduled to open April 1. I would guess that the pool would be complete around that time too. I’m definitely making a stop off at the end of April to check out the progress.

4. Continued changes of Downtown Disney/Disney Springs transformation. While the project won’t be complete until 2016, I’m very excited to see what new restaurants and shops will be available and announced over the next 12 months! It’s made great strides in the last 6-8 months. Going from mostly walls and closed shops to 2 new Starbucks, more open space, and a a new parking garage in 2014! It’s a location that’s on the way up!

5. Additions to The Epcot Flower and Garden Festival! It’s one of my favorite events special events. This annual Epcot event has grown over the past several years. It used to be just a display and collection of flowers and topiaries and now it’s more like a mini Food & Wine festival. We enjoy taking time and sampling everything the event has to offer. Take time to enjoy everything that special time of year has to offer!

A free gift for your Disney vacation! The amazing and exciting Minnie Box! (subject to minimum vacation package)

A free gift for your Disney vacation! The amazing and exciting Minnie Box! (subject to minimum vacation package)

Ready to get started planning your 2015 Disney World vacation? Please contact me at any time for a free quote. The benefits to using an authorized Disney vacation planner include saving time before and during your vacation with itinerary planning which can help save you hours of standing in line each day. Plus you won’t have to watch for available discounts, research resorts, wake up early for dining reservations, or stay up late for FastPasses. The best part about using a travel planner instead of planning yourself? It’s totally FREE! Plus I’ll take away some of the stress and confusion of planning a Disney vacation (especially if it’s your first one!)It’s also a worry free cruise opportunity. I’ll walk through through all of the steps to the process with a few little insider tips along the way! If you already have your vacation planned and are interested in transferring your vacation, ask me how!

Disney World Tips & Tricks for Magic Kingdom Parades

If you’re like me, you’re a sucker for a good parade and if you’re not a fan, let Disney change your mind! On most days, Magic Kingdom has 2 parades each day: Festival of Fantasy and Main Street Electric Parade. The showing of both of this parades can vary by year and sometimes you may see additional parades or changes to the current parade.

If you want the best spot, follow these few helpful tips:

Arrive Early! If you want a front row spot, you’ll need to arrive early and camp out for your spot, especially if you want a spot on Main Street USA! If you want to keep your kiddos in their stroller to catch a quick snooze, plan on arriving 30-45 minutes prior to the start of the show.

Find the best spot for your family. Think about what you plan on doing after the parade ends. Do you want to head back to your resort for a break or are you coming back for the afternoon parade and then hit some attractions. It makes most sense to watch from the end of Main Street if you want to head out and more toward Frontierland/Liberty Square if you want to stay in the parks. The most logical place to go from Liberty Square is either Haunted Mansion or make a quick run for Fantasyland. If it’s hot out, don’t attempt to go to Splash Mountain – you and several hundred of your friends will have the same idea!

Know how to navigate the park. Be careful if you want to to make a quick exit or travel from one land to the next. Your path may be blocked. Look at the Magic Kingdom map for the exact parade route. If you want to avoid the parades, spend some time in Tomorrowland. Contrary to popular belief, the parades don’t lower crowds that much. Fireworks, however, will!

Think about the second parade (if applicable). If there are 2 parades on the schedule, the second is always less crowded. Don’t try and overstress your kids and wrech bed time because of a second parade. You will often get a better view and you won’t have to show up as early to snag a great spot. I walked up to the Main Street Electric Parade as it was starting and ended up with a front row seat.

A word about special parades. During the Halloween and Christmas parties, you’ll often see 2 parade times. The second parade is again, less crowded, but you’ll still need to stake out your spot a bit in advance. If you’re going during a sold out party, plan on 15-30 minutes. During Christmas, you’ll have the Christmas parade in the afternoon instead of Festival of Fantasy. Since this is the peak of peak travel time, make sure you get there early. Lines for everything are long, so it’s not like you’ll have a ton of time to ride attractions.

Using a FastPass? Lucky guests can get a FastPass for their favorite parade. The area to sit is small so choices are limited. It’s definitely useful for on site guests only. I don’t really recommend it unless you’re spending 3+ days in Magic Kingdom or parades are the most important part of your trip.

Planning FastPasses around parades. For on site guests, take advantage of the parade times and plan your bonus 4th or even 5th FastPass around the parade time and where you want to watch. Skipping over to one of Fantasyland’s many attractions might be a good suggestion. There’s a nice air-conditioned/indoor FP+ kiosk available in Liberty Square as you wait. Remember, only one member of your party needs to book those passes.

A free gift for your Disney vacation! The amazing and exciting Minnie Box! (subject to minimum vacation package)

A free gift for your Disney vacation! The amazing and exciting Minnie Box! (subject to minimum vacation package)

Ready to get started planning your 2015 Disney World vacation? Please contact me at any time for a free quote. The benefits to using an authorized Disney vacation planner include saving time before and during your vacation with itinerary planning which can help save you hours of standing in line each day. Plus you won’t have to watch for available discounts, research resorts, wake up early for dining reservations, or stay up late for FastPasses. The best part about using a travel planner instead of planning yourself? It’s totally FREE! Plus I’ll take away some of the stress and confusion of planning a Disney vacation (especially if it’s your first one!)It’s also a worry free cruise opportunity. I’ll walk through through all of the steps to the process with a few little insider tips along the way! If you already have your vacation planned and are interested in transferring your vacation, ask me how!

How to beat the Spring Break Crowds at Disney World

Spring Break is a busy time around Disney World. Many parents don’t want to take their kids out of school, so it seems like the most logical time to enjoy the warmer Orlando weather. Well, great minds think alike moms and dads of the world! Crowd levels are often 7-9 out of 10 during that time. So how do you make the most out of your time in Disney (especially since you are often paying a premium as Disney considers this “peak time”).

Stay on Disney property. You will save tons of time by staying on Disney property including travel to and from your hotel and the ability to schedule your FastPasses (more on that in a bit). You can also take advantage of extra magic hours!

Arrive at parks before rope drop. I know it’s vacation and may want to sleep in, but this is probably the most important piece of advice I can give. Plan to get to the parks 20-30 minutes before park open. This will allow you to get to 1-2 (if not more) major attractions early in the day. You can always go back to your resort and take a break (and a nap) in the middle of the day.

Know before you go! Know which parks have early morning magic hours and AVOID THEM. By 11 am, these parks are packed and wait times are typically longer than a regular day. Also know which parks have evening magic hours. If you have park hopper passes, plan to go there late in the day. Lines are often shorter, especially if extra magic hours are 2+ hours in length. The second hour even the most popular attractions can be less than a 15 minute standby time. 

Schedule your FastPass+. This allows you to book 3 attractions (rides, character meet and greets, or live shows) and skip the line. That’s a huge help when you’re traveling with kids. Anytime you can bypass an hour of wait time is a good thing to me!

Eat at off peak times. If you can eat before 10 am or after 1:30 pm for lunch, you will beat some of the crowds. 

Enjoy attractions during parades. Check the daily schedule and know when and where the parades are. These draw big crowds, so if you don’t mind missing them, take the opportunity to hop in a line and ride standby.

Don’t stress! It is vacation after all.

And most important of all, ENJOY YOUR FAMILY! 

A free gift for your Disney vacation! The amazing and exciting Minnie Box! (subject to minimum vacation package)

A free gift for your Disney vacation! The amazing and exciting Minnie Box! (subject to minimum vacation package)

Ready to get started planning your 2015 Disney World vacation? Please contact me at any time for a free quote. The benefits to using an authorized Disney vacation planner include saving time before and during your vacation with itinerary planning which can help save you hours of standing in line each day. Plus you won’t have to watch for available discounts, research resorts, wake up early for dining reservations, or stay up late for FastPasses. The best part about using a travel planner instead of planning yourself? It’s totally FREE! Plus I’ll take away some of the stress and confusion of planning a Disney vacation (especially if it’s your first one!)It’s also a worry free cruise opportunity. I’ll walk through through all of the steps to the process with a few little insider tips along the way! If you already have your vacation planned and are interested in transferring your vacation, ask me how!

FREE Things available around Disney World

You spend money on your Disney World Resort, Park Tickets, Water Park Tickets, and Dining Package. Now you have to shell out more money on gifts and souvenirs. So what can you do for free?

Magic Kingdom

Sorcerers of the Magic Kingdom: A game that allows you to obtain trading cards from Magic Kingdom to help Merlin defeat Disney Villains. Stop at the Firehouse on Main Street for a brief lesson and to pick up your trading cards

Insider tip: You are allowed one set of cards per day, per person in your party. If you have a park hopper pass, you can grab an extra set of cards each day to increase your collection!

Electric Water Pageant: Nightly water pageant on Seven Seas Lagoon. This can be seen from any of the “monorail” resorts as well as Magic Kingdom.

Insider tip: Check the daily schedule at Magic Kingdom or one of the monorail resorts for times. Subject to cancellation for inclement weather.

EPCOT

Club Cool: Try Coca Cola products from around the world. Typically there are 8 flavors available to try and the flavors rotate periodically. Located in Future World near Innoventions West.

Insider tip: This is a great place to stop on a hot day for a free beverage or to wait out a brief Florida shower.

Downtown Disney

Legoland: Free play area for kids and amazing lego creations in the surrounding area!Woody

Raglan Road: Often has live music in the bar (especially on weekends)

Disney’s Boardwalk

At times there are street performers in the evening. Walk around and enjoy!

Other

Transportation: Transportation throughout Walt Disney World is free for Disney Resort Guests! This includes the monorail, bus system, and boats

Insider tip: Try and ride all the modes of transportation during your trip! Monorail service is available around Magic Kingdom, the front entrance of EPCOT, and from the Ticket and Transportation Center. Boat service is available along the Magic Kingdom Resorts and the Ticket and Transportation Center as well as Friendship Boats which have service from Disney’s Hollywood Studios to the rear entrance of EPCOT with stops at Swan/Dolphin, Boardwalk, and Beach/Yacht Club. A wonderfully relaxing ride! Bus service is available from all resorts (limited based on other modes of transportation).

Photographers: Disney’s load of PhotoPass photographers are available at all the best locations at Walt Disney World.

Insider Tip: Activate your PhotoPass Card before your departure and bring it with on your trip. Also bring a digital camera or smart phone. When you hand off your photo pass, ask the photographer if they would mind taking a photo with your camera as well. Most are happy to oblige.

What are your favorite freebies at Disney?

5 steps to planning an all inclusive Disney World vacation

5 Steps to Planning an All Inclusive Disney World Vacation!

So you want an all inclusive vacation, how about Disney World? Most people don’t think about Disney destinations as an all inclusive type trip, but they can be. Have everything paid for up front, reservations made for your favorite restaurants and attractions and even skip a few lines with these 5 easy steps:

1. Make your Disney World package reservation a resort that’s most convenient to your family’s wants and needs. Want to spend more time in Magic Kingdom and less time traveling? Think about Contemporary, Polynesian, Grand Floridian, or even Wilderness Lodge. Love Epcot? Think about Beach or Yacht Club. Parks not so important? How about club level service at any of the deluxe resorts to enjoy some down time in their lounge with a few snacks and drinks? With well over 20 resort options, there’s surely something for everyone!

Enjoy some of the finer resorts on Disney property: Contemporary

Enjoy some of the finer resorts on Disney property: Contemporary

2. Choosing your dining plan. Of course, the most important part of an all inclusive vacation is the FOOD! Disney offers several different dining plan options that fits your needs. Have a toddler who’s on the go? Try the quick service plan which gives you the flexibility and maximizes your park time. Like sitting down for a meal and trying new things but still want an option to grab and go? Disney’s PLUS dining is for you! Love to be adventurous and try new things? Are vacations all about the food? Deluxe dining might be the best choice for you! While it involves a lot of planning, it’s an amazing experience to try some of the finer things Disney has to offer! How about some recreational activities as well as live shows and adventures? Check out the premium dining plan! This has the same entitlements as the deluxe dining plan, but allows you to use your credits differently as well as unlimited recreational sports for the ULTIMATE in all inclusive vacations. Above that is the platinum dining plan which includes everything the premium plan has to offer plus a fireworks cruise and spa treatment. This also includes pre-arriving planning service by a Disney cast member (because you’ll need it to pack everything into your trip!)

3. Make your reservation more than 180 days in advance. This will allow you to get your choice of dining reservations when they become available for your travel dates. Do your research, take a look at menus, talk to friends and family and carefully pick your top choice dining experiences during your stay. This is only for table service restaurants, no need for reservations at any quick service dining locations.

4. Make your FastPass+ reservations. 60 days prior to your arrival, you can book all of your FastPass+ reservations! Check out popular attractions like the new Seven Dwarfs Mine Train, Soarin’, Toy Story Mania, or meet your child’s favorite Disney characters: Anna & Elsa, Cinderella, or even Mickey Mouse himself! Remember, 3 FastPass choices per park day per person and they don’t all have to be the same!

5. Buy a few gift cards. Since Disney does require gratuity on all table service meals, to make it a true all inclusive vacation, you’ll need to stash some cash for that extra cost. Grab some gift cards whether they be the Disney or Visa variety. Either way, you won’t go home spending a dime! Maybe even grab a few more for some sounveirs!

There you have! 5 easy steps to making your Disney World vacation, all inclusive! To save you some work on the process, try out a travel agent that specializes in Disney. It’s free, it’s easy, and you don’t have to do any of the work!

A free gift for Disney vacation! The amazing and exciting Minnie Box! (subject to minimum vacation package)

A free gift for Disney vacation! The amazing and exciting Minnie Box! (subject to minimum vacation package)

Ready to get started planning your 2015 Disney World vacation? Please contact me at any time for a free quote. The benefits to using an authorized Disney vacation planner include saving time before and during your vacation with itinerary planning which can help save you hours of standing in line each day. Plus you won’t have to watch for available discounts, research resorts, wake up early for dining reservations, or stay up late for FastPasses. The best part about using a travel planner instead of planning yourself? It’s totally FREE! Plus I’ll take away some of the stress and confusion of planning a Disney vacation (especially if it’s your first one!)It’s also a worry free cruise opportunity. I’ll walk through through all of the steps to the process with a few little insider tips along the way! If you already have your vacation planned and are interested in transferring your vacation, ask me how!

Planning a Disney World vacation with Toddlers

 

It’s a brave adventure for parents, taking a toddler to Disney World. While it makes perfect financial sense due to Disney’s “free until 3 policy”, the change in routine can be nerve wracking! If this is your first Disney World vacation EVER the new experience will be exciting for your entire family. If you’ve been to Disney World without kids, you’ll definitely notice a difference in pace and touring style. Please use this guide to help you master Disney World with a little one!

Choosing AccommodationsArt-Of-Animation2

There are two schools of thought when booking your accommodations: convenience and price. Convenience would be within close proximity to Magic Kingdom. Keeping cost in mind, your best bet is Wilderness Lodge, although I could make an argument to upgrade to one of the resorts along the monorail to just “roll on” to the monorail allowing you to get to both Magic Kingdom and Epcot without worrying about taking your prince or princess out, folding the stroller up and repeating multiple times each day as you would to get on and off the buses. The resorts nearest to Epcot: Beach Club, Yacht Club, and Boardwalk Inn are also 3 great choices as you can walk or take a boat to both Epcot and Hollywood Studios. (The walk to Hollywood Studios is long – I suggest the boat unless you literally just missed it).

In between the convenience and price category is Art of Animation. The family suites provide the best character presence in all of Disney World and it’s perfect for kids of all ages! A bonus of the family suites is that adults have a separate bedroom from the living space allowing your little one to get a full night’s sleep without you in sight! It will also avoid “lights out” earlier than you’d like or hiding under the covers watching a movie on the iPad! Another little bonus is that the family suites have a microwave!

Middle of the road money wise in the moderate category, I think Coronado Springs is the best. There are sliding doors between the bathroom area and the sleeping quarters that could block off light and noise while your toddler gets her beauty sleep (assuming a pack and play is still in the cards). Coronado Springs also has the best moderate resort pool experience.

If you’re really looking to save money, your best priced resort as well as winner for best use of characters in Disney resort is All Star Movies. Buyer beware though – you don’t get anything for free. This resort is rather large, so it’s worth upgrading to the preferred location rooms. During off peak travel hours, this resort shares bus service with the other two All Star resorts and Movies is the LAST stop. Not ideal with a toddler in tow.

All Disney World resorts have a mini fridge and you can request a pack n play or crib (based on availability) at no cost. The mini fridge is large enough to fit a half gallon of milk and some other cold snacks. Think the size of a college dorm fridge. For moms like me that are still doing whole milk for their growing babies, each resort has their own “general store” that you can buy milk, juice, and other supplies at Disney inflated prices. It’s better than buying cartons of milk one by one!

How many nights to stay?

This is your decision! If you’re taking a plane ride, I think 5 nights is your minimum. If you’re changing time zones whether flying or driving, you need at least that amount of time as well. An ideal Disney vacation (especially for a first time) is 7 days, 6 nights (or more) with a break every 2-3 nights to enjoy the other things your resort has to offer or to go exploring.

Park tickets

Theme park tickets, the most expensive part of any Disney vacation. First timers will definitely have some sticker shock at the overall cost of their vacation package when park tickets get added to the mix. Starting with “how many days”. My preference with or without kids is at least 5. There’s a big price break at 4, so the upgrade to that 5th day is really minimal. This gives you 2 Magic Kingdom days, 1 Epcot Day, 1 Hollywood Studios day, and 1 Animal Kingdom day.

If you’re on a shorter trip or a tight budget, use this guide to choose your parks. I understand you want to see it all but for the age of your little ones, Magic Kingdom just makes the most sense. There are well over 30 attractions plus live shows to enjoy. While some of them are for “big kids”, it’s important to know what each park has to offer.

3 Days: 2 Magic Kingdom, 1 park of your choice

4 Days: 2 Magic Kingdom, 2 parks of your choice (or 1 in each park, but you may feel like you’re missing out on Magic Kingdom!)

Choosing your “other” park, is based on what you and your child/children like. Hollywood Studios has a heavy Disney Junior presence, Epcot has lots of princesses, and Animal Kingdom has some great dining, a few lesser seen Disney characters and it’s great for little ones who enjoy the zoo back home!

Don’t be afraid to skip a park. You can always return to Disney another time to enjoy more when the kids get bigger!

What about park hoppers? Is that too much for young kids? My argument for park hoppers is that you’re little one is taking it all the sights and sounds of Disney. They won’t notice a difference of going to Magic Kingdom in the morning and heading to Epcot after nap time. Lights and noise are lights and noise!

Big Kids Can Have Fun Too!

For many of the attractions that have height requirements, the rider switch option is available. Alert a cast member that you’d like to take advantage of this service and they will walk you through the process. This allows one guest to ride while the other one waits with your too small or too scared rider and the “switch” with the other adult. If you have an older child who can ride, he or she can ride twice (once with each adult).

Characters

I’m sure traveling with little ones bring the thought of character meets to mind. If your kids do recognize some Disney characters (which I think happens around age 2), you can one or more of your FastPass+ allotments to meet their favorite characters or use the standby lines to do so.

Taking a break

Whether you choose base tickets or park hoppers, you can leave a park and return later in the day. Try and keep nap time consistent each day. If your little one is a good stroller napper, feel free to roll around the parks while she takes a snooze. If you need a quiet space, head back to your hotel BEFORE nap time to get some time to wind down and to prevent a complete meltdown.

Each of Disney’s 4 theme parks have a baby center. It’s an air conditioned area with rocking chairs, changing tables, bottle warmers, high chairs, and more. It’s also a great escape from the noise of Disney parks. Check the park maps for locations!

FastPass+

The addition of FastPass+ is the biggest asset to parents of young children. This allows you to schedule those top 3 choice attractions prior to your arrival. Avoiding being in line during nap time/when you’d like to leave the park for the morning.

Best FastPass+ attractions for each theme park for the toddler population:

Magic Kingdom

  • Jungle CruiseDisney-World-First-Visit-Button
  • Pirates of the Caribbean
  • Under the Sea: Journey of the Little Mermaid
  • Peter Pan’s Flight
  • Enchanted Tales with Belle
  • Dumbo
  • Buzz Lightyear’s Space Ranger Spin
  • Mickey’s PhilharMagic
  • Adventures of Winnie the Pooh
  • Monsters Inc. Laugh Floor
  • Haunted Mansion (+/- on the “scare” factor)
  • Meet Anna & Elsa
  • Meet Mickey at Town Square
  • Meet Tinkerbell at Town Square
  • Meet Ariel in her Grotto
  • Meet Cinderella & Rapunzel

There are many more attractions and live shows available in Magic Kingdom to bring enjoyment to your toddler!

Epcot

  • Seas with Nemo and Friends
  • Turtle Talk with Crush
  • Journey Into Imagination with Figment
  • Epcot Character Spot
  • Maelstrom
  • Spaceship Earth
  • Living with the Land

The two headlining attractions in Epcot: Test Track and Soarin’ both have 40” height minimums. Adults will have fun with these. Check out details of Rider Switch.

Hollywood Studios

  • Toy Story Mania
  • Voyage of the Little Mermaid (live show)
  • Beauty and the Beast Live on Stage (live show)
  • Disney Junior – Live on Stage (live show)
  • Studio Backlot Tour
  • Great Movie Ride (+/- for a few small scare factors)
  • Muppet Vision 3D
  • Lights, Motors, Action (live show)
  • Indiana Jones Stunt Show (live show)

Enjoy some adventure time at Honey I Shrunk the Audience play area!

Animal Kingdom

  • Kilimanjaro Safaris
  • Festival of the Lion King (live show)
  • Finding Nemo the Musical (live show)
  • Triceratops Spin
  • DINOSAUR (height requirement and decent scare factor involved – beware before you choose this option)
  • Meet Disney Pals

Play in the Boneyard! If you have time, enjoy some of the trails and treks – Flights of Wonder, Wild Africa Trek, Rafiki’s Planet Watch, etc. They’re worth the time exploring if you have a full day to dedicate to Animal Kingdom.

Dining

If you’re planning a character meal, book it later in your trip to see how your little one reacts to characters earlier in the trip. Stop by one of the character meet and greets and try face characters (those that can speak) vs. non-face characters like Mickey and friends who don’t speak. They may be a bit scarier at first. If you do make your reservation earlier in your trip, you can always wave characters past your table if the scare factor is too high! Remember, Disney allows cancellation at no cost 24+ hours from time of reservation so you can always do something else.

Don’t worry about a few tears or whiny moments, kids are everywhere in Disney and most parents feel your pain and are hoping their kid doesn’t do the same thing until AFTER they leave!

Non-character dining options that have great ambiance for kids and good food for adults:

  • Sci-Fi Dine-In Theater (Hollywood Studios)
  • 50s Prime Time Café (Hollywood Studios)
  • Beaches & Cream (Beach Club)
  • Whispering Canyon Café (Wilderness Lodge)
  • ‘Ohana Dinner (Polynesian)
  • T-REX (Downtown Disney)
  • Coral Reef (Epcot)
  • San Angel Inn (Epcot
  • Rainforest Café (Downtown Disney or Animal Kingdom)
  • Live theater shows are sometimes a good option depending on your child’s attention span – Hoop Dee Doo Musical Revue and Mickey’s Backyard BBQ are my top choices.

Dining Plan or No Dining Plan?

Can you get your little one to sit down each night for a meal? Is he a wiggle worm and makes everyone’s dinner more difficult when he’s “all done”? Perhaps plus dining is not for you! If he wants food on the table NOW and you do want dining, select mostly buffet locations. The added benefit being that he can have his own plate of food at each buffet location without any additional cost. At other sit down restaurants, he can share with mom, dad, or big sister at no additional cost.

If you’re beyond meltdowns or have a toddler who will patiently sit and eat (I’m jealous), enjoy and explore all of your options. You still may want to stay away from signature dining as that can be a long meal!

Adults only time

Looking for some time away from your little one for a romantic dinner or outing? Disney has thought of EVERYTHING! Kids nite out offers 1:1 babysitting services in your hotel room. This must be set up in advance, but it’s a great way for adults to escape for a little bit. If you’re little ones are over age 3, you have the opportunity to enjoy some of the kids activity centers around Disney World deluxe resorts while you enjoy a meal as well!

A free gift for Disney vacation! The amazing and exciting Minnie Box! (subject to minimum vacation package)

A free gift for Disney vacation! The amazing and exciting Minnie Box! (subject to minimum vacation package)

Ready to get started planning your 2015 Disney World vacation? Please contact me at any time for a free quote. The benefits to using an authorized Disney vacation planner include saving time before and during your vacation with itinerary planning which can help save you hours of standing in line each day. Plus you won’t have to watch for available discounts, research resorts, wake up early for dining reservations, or stay up late for FastPasses. The best part about using a travel planner instead of planning yourself? It’s totally FREE! Plus I’ll take away some of the stress and confusion of planning a Disney vacation (especially if it’s your first one!)It’s also a worry free cruise opportunity. I’ll walk through through all of the steps to the process with a few little insider tips along the way! If you already have your vacation planned and are interested in transferring your vacation, ask me how!

Tips for planning your First Disney World vacation!

 

It was a slow day for me today, so what else would I do but dream of our next Disney World vacation. My husband hates when I’m left to my own devices because he knows I’ll find a deal and sweet talk him into something, and of course, I did! 🙂 Back to Disney in December for some more “research” of course! This will be my daughter’s very first trip and while she won’t remember it, the vacation will be a very memorable one for us!

The first Disney trip is a big deal. Whether it’s the first time going as an adult and planning yourself or the first time for your kids, each experience is different and deserves specialized care! While many of my general tips apply to all Disney guests, here are some that are especially for those first time travelers!

  • Travel off peak when possible. September – early November is really the best time to go to Disney! The weather is still warm, crowds are low, and prices are low as well. Disney often offers free dining or discounted dining promotions during this time so you get more for less. Free dining continues to be the most popular promotion Disney offers and there’s a reason they choose specific seasons to offer this great promotion.
  • If summer or spring break is your only option, don’t sweat it. You can still enjoy Disney while when crowds levels are higher. You can enjoy FastPass+ to the fullest by staying on Disney property which will allow you to skip the line for even more of your soon to be favorite attractions!
  • Plan ahead. Once you have your dates, get them secured. Discounts can ALWAYS be applied at the time a new promotion is released. It’s just a phone call away. Packages require a $200 deposit to book and is 100% refundable 46+ days in advance, so if things change, no problem.
  • Work with someone that knows Disney. You will save time, money, frustration, and stress by working with a travel agent. I’m always here to help if you have general questions or are looking to get your Magical experience started! I’ve found that once a person starts with a good travel agent, they continue to use him/her for future trips or refer friends. That’s a really good marker of a great person! You should not be another page in their book!
  • Try at least one sit down restaurant. Your feet will thank you and it’s fun to get a different experience and a break from the go, go, go atmosphere of Disney.Disney-MagicBand
  • Use FastPass+ to your advantage. Whether you have base tickets or park hoppers, make sure take advantage to all the free things Disney offers as part of their package. Each ticketed guest will receive 3 FastPasses each day. Disney resort guests have the opportunity to earn more once inside the park. Check out the complete details of FastPass+ and learn strategy.
  • Customize those MagicBands. I always feel bad when I see a family with all gray bands walking around the parks or playing in the pool. Learn how to get to your customization page and get creative!
  • Children under 3 are free! If are thinking about Disney travel in the near future and your son or daughter is under 3, think about travel sooner rather than later. Children under 3 years of age are free. Free park tickets, free dining at buffets, and are able to eat off your plate at other restaurants. They also don’t count toward the total guests in your room . For a family of 5, this is huge. Once you hit 5+ in a room, you lose many hotel options.
  • Children under 10 cost less! Once again, if you are going to travel in the near future, 9 years old and 10 years old make a huge difference. At 10, kids are considered Disney “adults” and pay adult prices for food and park tickets. You will save quite a bit of money by traveling before (or near) the age your child turns 10.
  • Tell Disney (or your travel agent) about any celebrations. This includes everything from first visit to birthday, graduation, anniversary, etc. Anything you can think of.  Even if travel doesn’t fall specific on a birthday or anniversary, you can still celebrate at Disney! You’ll get a little something extra. While it’s typically just a button, you never know what kind of fuss Disney will make over your special celebration.
  • Do your research! Know what resorts have to offer and know where each one is. Typically there’s a reason that one hotel is cheaper than another in each resort category. Make sure you know the details before you make your final decision!
A free gift for Disney vacation! The amazing and exciting Minnie Box! (subject to minimum vacation package)

A free gift for Disney vacation! The amazing and exciting Minnie Box! (subject to minimum vacation package)

Ready to get started planning your 2015 Disney World vacation? Please contact me at any time for a free quote. The benefits to using an authorized Disney vacation planner include saving time before and during your vacation with itinerary planning which can help save you hours of standing in line each day. Plus you won’t have to watch for available discounts, research resorts, wake up early for dining reservations, or stay up late for FastPasses. The best part about using a travel planner instead of planning yourself? It’s totally FREE! Plus I’ll take away some of the stress and confusion of planning a Disney vacation (especially if it’s your first one!)It’s also a worry free cruise opportunity. I’ll walk through through all of the steps to the process with a few little insider tips along the way! If you already have your vacation planned and are interested in transferring your vacation, ask me how!