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View Full Version : Disney 2010 or Bust - PTR (Updated Oct 25, 2010...where are my adr's?!?!?!)


KKDonaldFan
04-17-2009, 12:49 PM
Hello DIS'ers.

Our family have been saving for a trip to WDW for a few years time for when our daughter is a little bit older.

However, I've been informed by my mother on her visit last week that a trip is being planned for next year!!! :yay: Looks like we are going earlier than scheduled.

Here is the tentative list of people making the trek down south from Canada.

Me (M/36) - Haven't been to WDW since the honeymoon in 2000. However, my daughter loves the videos and those Disney Treasure cartoon DVDs and she knows that "Mickey Mouse lives there".

DW (38) - Haven't been to WDW since the honeymoon....and REALLY looking forward to it.

DD (4) - This will be her first trip....this should be interesting....to see the park through a child's eyes.

Mom and Dad (60's) - Only previous trip was back in '92 during my senior year of high school....they are going to see a lot of changes.

Bro (34) - Was in WDW back in '92.

Bro GF - Don't think she has ever been there before. Another Disney rookie.

Auntie M (late 50's) - First trip (I believe) to WDW.

Bro-In-Law - Never been there before. Has shown an interest in going but don't know at this point if he is a part of this trip.

Right now, all I have is a year....I don't have a month or dates of travel, a place to stay yet.......but I'll be updating this thread as the details become apparent.

Man there is a lot of planning to do.....but it is going to be fun!!!! :cool1:

DWGal210
04-17-2009, 02:18 PM
Sounds like a good group - you're going to have TONS of fun! And let the Dis help you...there are so many places to get great info and plan for your trip.

Have a good one! :cool1:

KKDonaldFan
04-28-2009, 11:14 AM
Okay, since I've been told that the plan is to go to Disney in 2010, I decided to start some preliminary research. This trip has been different from my last trip for a couple of reasons.

1. This is the first WDW trip with a child.
2. This is the first WDW trip with a larger group.

Fortunately, I do have something to use as a frame of reference.

About 3 years ago, this same bunch (minus the brother in-law) went to Maryland for a cousin's wedding. We then spent some time in the area and we went to HersheyPark for a day. This was a great day...and I've learned a few things.

1. Who likes the big thrill rides and who doesn't.
2. Who likes the shows and who doesn't.
3. We will probably have to stop at every bathroom we come across (don't ask).

My daughter was just a toddler then. In the time since, she has gone numerous times to Canada's Wonderland and enjoys the rides there (for her age).

As for my brother-in-law, we did a trip with him a couple of years ago to Cedar Point. He wasn't a big fan of the mega coasters. Personally, I think that was mostly because he is a bigger barrel-chested guy and was afraid that he would be told he couldn't ride by some of the ride staff.

The biggest challenge will be doing the different attractions at WDW with a diverse group in terms of likes/dislikes. In addition, my daughter is obviously going to be too small for some stuff (not a big deal for her since those attractions would be ones she wouldn't want to go on anyway).

Fortunately, WDW has something for everybody so there won't be shortages of things for everyone to do.

Next up is the ideal length of a trip and where to stay......feel free to read and comment!!

KKDonaldFan
04-29-2009, 11:04 PM
Hello DIS'ers.

Okay, with a larger group like this....the consensus right now is to stay off-site. If it was a smaller group (such as the immediate family), we would be staying on site for sure. It is a lot easier and more convenient.

However, since we can't cram 9 people in one room, we are looking at other options.

Mom suggested we should rent out a timeshare or something. This would give everyone plenty of room plus it would be cheaper for everybody in the long run.

Of course, you can guess who has started sniffing around :goodvibes

Through the boards here and in other places, I have found pretty much what sort of place we are looking for....

1. Dreams Villas of Orlando
2. Windsor Hills Resort.

Pretty much, you are renting out a house for a week or two. Has anyone ever used these places and, if so, what are they like? Would like to have a good idea before I start sending recommendations to the rest of the group for them to consider.

Next up....how long are we going and my reasons for suggesting 2 weeks.

KKDonaldFan
05-04-2009, 09:09 AM
When my wife asked Mom how long she was thinking for this particular trip, she said (10 days or so). This isn't going to do.

I have several reasons to suggest increasing this to 14 days (two weeks).

1. I think some of these villas and such we are looking at require a minimum one week booking. I wouldn't be surprised if they require booking by the week.

2. Everyone knows that two vacation days are used for travelling. So I would rather have 12 full days in Florida than just 8 days...am I right? :confused3

3. This might allow for a visit to Seaworld and/or the Universal parks....hey..if in Rome....

Realistically, we will need 6 to 7 days at Disney anyway. Here's my breakdown...

Magic Kingdom - 2 days (not as much rushing around trying to see everything in one day)

Epcot - 2 days (this is a big park...we did it in one day on my honeymoon but we skipped a lot of the movies in World Showcase...and it was in early December...one of the slowest times of the year in terms of crowds)

Disney Studios - 1 day (easy enough to do...haven't heard anyone needing more than one day unless they are taking a VERY leisurely vacation....not that there is anything wrong with that)

Animal Kingdom - 1 day (I like this park but I found it hard to stay there one full day when I went....and I think we saw pretty much everything).

So that is about 6 days there. Add a day for Sea World and 2 days for Universal and that brings it to 9 days. That would give 3 days for relaxing/taking a break from the parks, shopping at outlet malls, seeing local attractions outside of these big parks and whatever else we come across.

Depending on when we go, we could cut the "Disney Days" down from 6 to 5 and have the park hopping option added to our tickets....I know....perish the thought!! :eek: However, that could be an option if we go during one of the traditional slow times of year.

However, if we are forced to cut the vacation time down, I'm more than willing to drop the Seaworld and Universal options and have strictly a Disney vacation in terms of theme parks....I certainly wouldn't complain.

If anyone has any thoughts and ideas, feel free to post! Would love to hear from people.

Next post will be discussing what time of year to go.....that should be fun deciding that.

KKDonaldFan
09-22-2010, 01:18 PM
Where do I start?

There has been a lot of change in our lives since I last updated this thread...but it is all for the better!

In August of this year, we closed on our new house. Things have been great with that so far but I was busy with that for several months...especially after we got out of one contract with a builder who wasn't meeting their end of the deal. We were looking in this new builder's neighbourhood but couldn't afford the houses. However, in the interim, they released a series of homes in our price range...and we are very happy with that.

Now on to the Disney trip. Originally, we were looking at December 2010 but, with the new house plus issues with my wife getting off in early December, we have now decided January 2011 as a new timeframe.

The list of people now going is also up in the air. It could be anywhere from just the 3 or us to an additional 4 to 5 people.

We went to our travel agent specifying the dates we were looking at, the kind of place we want to stay etc. We were thinking of the following

- a seven day stay
- stay at a moderate resort (Caribbean Beach)
- include the dining plan
- park tickets
- airfare

You get the idea. Our agent came back to us with a price of around $4500 for the three of us. The other two couples interested (my parents plus my brother and his gf) was around $3700 or so. However, they don't live in the same city as us. Actually, they are on the east coast...so they will have to pay additional airfare to travel here before going to Orlando.

So we sent the quote to the four of them....and they are balking at the price. We are trying to explain to them that it isn't going to be a better price since we would be going during Value season and the price has nowhere to go but up. My mom is wondering about whether we should purchase the dining plan and just pay for meals out of pocket.

I suspect that, to get them to go, I may need to downgrade to a Value resort such as Pop Century or something. This wouldn't be my personal choice but I'll have to see what they decide.....and they need to make a decision soon.

If they decide they are not going, the three of us may decide to go on our own. We'll make that decision when the time comes.

Any thoughts?

KKDonaldFan
10-01-2010, 02:03 PM
Hello all (or anyone).

Today, my wife was talking to our travel agent....and it is a go! :yay:

Unfortunately, the big family trip has been dropped to just the three of us (me, my wife, and our soon-to-be 6yr old angel). Everyone else dropped for various reasons....oh well.....their loss :laughing:

Actually, my brother's gf had us thinking since they were leaning towards Port Orleans French Quarter. So I had my travel agent check that out. She got back to us yesterday with an even better deal than before!!

Arrive Jan 9th, leave late on Jan 16th....
Stay at Port Orleans French Quarter....
Park Tickets for entire stay (with parkhopper option).....
Dining plan consisting of buffet, counter-service, and sit-down per day....
Transfers via Disney Express.....

All for more $500 less than we were quoted before. We liked the price....so we booked it this morning.

Fortunately, our travel agent is a big Disney fan too...so she knew what we pretty much wanted. After reviewing her email, my wife asked about the Dining plan as I didn't know if this was the "Deluxe" plan or the "Standard" one. Apparently, it isn't the Deluxe so I'm a little confused (the Dining Plan is confusing enough as it is). For the time being (and for ADR purposes), I'm treating it as 1 sit-down per day and going by that....I guess I can always change the ADR's as necessary.

My next steps now are to see what days are considered "light" days in the parks and plan my ADR's appropriately. Usually, this time of year is considered off-season. However, with these dates falling in the Free Dining promotion...this could change. So I'll start booking stuff the weekend.

When we went 10 years ago, I went with the Unofficial Guide and that seemed to work out well. Now there is their online stuff (UTG) plus there is also Tour guide Mike's website...I think what I'm going to do for now is look at one of these and find out what days are going to be considered light traffic and straighten that out. Afterwards, I'll book some ADR's around which park we are going to be at during that time. My wife has told me "you can handle that part" so I'm going by that :woohoo:. We really don't have any preferences of where to eat...obviously we are not a part of the "LeCelier or Die" crowd.

I had a look at RideMax....but that seems to be more for commando-style touring which you can't do with a six-year old (and lets face it...is that style really that fun to begin with).

Once I start booking stuff, I'll post it in this thread. Any suggestions/ideas are certainly welcome. At least I know that someone is reading this thread!!!

Now I can add a ticker....


http://www.myvacationcountdown.com/tickers/5as1u5u0d78c6dck.png (http://www.myvacationcountdown.com/)

KKDonaldFan
10-02-2010, 08:30 AM
Isn't it great to have a family who can't seem to make up their mind?

As a courtesy, we sent my folks our travel details for this upcoming trip. Either they found some money or started getting sentimental.....because now they want to come!!!!!! Why couldn't they tell me this before I finalized everything with my travel agent? Sheesh.....:confused3

I have emailed my travel agent to see if she can get the same dates for them and, if so, to book it right away. I can always fax the hotel a couple of days beforehand and ask for rooms close together.

Last night, I had planned to start booking some ADR's and, with my parents' latest development, I booked them for five people. I figured it would be easier to book them for five and, when we go later, just tell the restaurants there are now only 3 (if my parents can't go afterall) than to try to rebook everything with a larger number.

So, last night, I bought an account with Tour Guide Mike and started looking at his recommended days for touring the parks...his logic makes sense so I started booking ADR's around the park we are visiting that day.

I'm following my own advice here when traveling anywhere with kids...try to book meals around their usual eating schedules....makes for a more happy family I think.:thumbsup2. I'm also avoiding, for the most part, buffets. This is more to keep my parents happy as they are not big buffet-goers for the most part.

Here is the schedule with the restaurants booked so far. I suspect I may have to make some adjustments which I will detail afterwards.

January 9th (arrival day) - Arrive mid-day, Epcot, Teppan Edo for dinner
January 10th - Epcot - La Hiacenda de San Angel
January 11th - MK - Ohana
January 12th - Studios - 50's Prime Time Cafe
January 13th - Animal Kingdom - Jiko's (Signature...so using 2 table credits here)
January 14th - MK - Tony's Town Square
January 15th - No real plans here (Downtown Disney)? - Chef Mickey's
January 16th (departure day) - Probably MK, no ADR.

The designated park for the day is pretty much set in stone. All of these ADR's are for dinner/supper. I may decide later to switch a couple to lunch and use the counter-service for dinner (have lunch at the park and maybe have dinner at the hotel instead). My wife reminded me of breaks for swimming and such afterwards...hence that afterthought.

My reasoning is to see the fireworks shows at Epcot/MK one of the two days we are there. It will really depend on my dd and how tired she is on arrival day...we may just eat and leave and see the show the following night. Likewise, we could arrive at MK later on the 14th, have dinner and see Wishes afterwards (since there is no real plans on the 15th..so no early rise on that day). I put a character dinner on the 15th as I thought it would be a nice ending to the trip for the most part. :grouphug:

I'm also operating on the assumption that we have 8 full days on the dining plan. If my travel documents say otherwise, I'm going to have to drop Jiko's and make a few adjustments here....

Next step: Touring plans

Now I got some real-world work to do around the house....later. :laundy:

KKDonaldFan
10-07-2010, 03:15 PM
It's amazing what a few days can do....

First of all, my folks are onboard and are going with us on the trip!! That's cool...they couldn't resist missing their only granddaughter's first trip to the world.:thumbsup2

I then reviewed my ADR's and, based on some reviews/recommendations, I changed a couple of places and booked times earlier than I had originally. The only exception was Chef Mickey's as there isn't an earlier time available...no big deal. Here is the current list.

January 9th (arrival day) - Arrive mid-day, Epcot, Teppan Edo for dinner
January 10th - Epcot - San Angel Inn
January 11th - MK - Ohana
January 12th - Studios - 50's Prime Time Cafe
January 13th - Animal Kingdom - Yak and Yeti
January 14th - MK - Tony's Town Square
January 15th - No real plans here (Downtown Disney)? - Chef Mickey's
January 16th (departure day) - Crystal Palace (lunch).

I changed to San Angel Inn. I figured my daughter would like the look of this one better. If it were an adults-only trip, I probably wouldn't have changed it. In addition, people who have recently been there have said the food has improved since La Hiacenda has opened...so I made the switch.

I dropped Jiko's as it seems a bit too fancy for my daughter so I decided to go with something in the park.

I'm still waiting for my travel documents so I'm not entirely sure yet if I have the Dining plan for 7 or 8 days. I booked based on 8. If it is only 7 days, I may drop Tony's and put the Crystal Palace in instead....or just drop Crystal Palace altogether.

I'm satisfied now with the ADR's....so I now consider them final.:yay:

The next steps would be how to tour the parks. I got a copy of the Unofficial Guide plus have Tour Guide Mike's opinions. Next month (or later this month), I'll subscribe to touringplans.com and see what additional ideas they have there.

http://www.myvacationcountdown.com/tickers/5as1u5u0d78c6dck.png (http://www.myvacationcountdown.com/)

KKDonaldFan
10-13-2010, 09:56 AM
My wife was laughing at me when I said that TGM says we have 100 days to our vacation.....and just like that 12 days have gone by. Time goes fast!

I was doing some searching around today and discovered a disappointing thing. When you travel in the off-season like we are doing, you have to expect attractions to be closed for refurbishing....so I decided to have a look at the scheduled list of closures.

My disappointment......Splash Mountain is one of them :eek:

That's too bad...I really enjoyed that attraction when I was last at the park....but it still sucks. In one way, it could be a good thing since it is one ride that I'm not sure my daughter would want to go on....so, in retrospect, it isn't a big deal. The only other big ride that is scheduled to be closed is Star Tours but that one made me a bit nauseous the last time...so I don't really care about that. The water parks are also in various stages of refurbishment....but we are not planning to go there anyway. Fantasyland, of course, is undergoing its expansion so I'll have to see what closures are happening closer to departure time.

There is still way too much to do on this vacation so I'm sure we won't be bored. At least I know in advance what is open/closed....

KKDonaldFan
10-25-2010, 02:39 PM
Gotta love the Disney website.

I went to look at my ADR's online as I was checking it to get the date we had planned to go to one of the parks (Animal Kingdom) and, thus, would have the date I booked the restaurant.

Well, wouldn't you know it....it was only displaying 3 of my reservations......#$^&*#@^$*@&#$@#@ (insert some colourful metaphors here...this is a family friendly site after all).

Of course, the first place I go to is the boards and there is a long thread about it (36 pages and counting). People have called Disney Dining and have confirmed that their ADR's are all still intact....so I'm not worried. I'll have to check through my emails to make sure I have written confirmation for all of them.

This, however, is a poor move for Disney. How on earth could they allow an upgrade to occur that completely screws up their production system. I should point out that I work in IT and, if this happened to one of our clients, we would be in the bread lines now. You would think they had some sort of staging/test system with data on it to make sure there would be no screwups when they updated their production code. At the very least, you would expect them to be able to revert back to their previous system in the event of such a problem.

Bad bad bad....I can only imagine Pete's rant on this item :lmao:.

Time is going quickly....had 100 days to go and now 1/4 of that time has flown by.....wow.

Hopefully, the online ADR system gets straightened out....or Disney will have a revolt on its hands for sure.