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Old 01-14-2013, 02:19 AM   #1
sray563's Avatar
Join Date: Feb 2010
Location: Louisiana
Posts: 195

A Graduation Celebration 8 Years in the Making... PTR January 2013

January 15th - 21st

Okay, this isn't really a trip that took 8 years to plan. This is a trip celebrating my dedicated sister's hard road to her bachelor's degree. What better way to celebrate your college education by a trip to Disneyland!

The Cast: Myself, 25 year old Disney enthusiasts. My first trip to WDW was when I was 2 months old back in 1988.

DS, my barely 3 year old son. This will be the first time that we have to pay for him. I reasoned letting him be "two" for this trip since he only turned 3 less than 2 months ago, but it's unethical.... plus, he tells everyone he meets that he is 3. He is very proud!

Lastly, my older sister, the college graduate. This was taken four years ago at my wedding. She eats gluten free, so I will be reviewing our experience with gluten free dining as well.

Basically, we are a few crazy New Orleans natives looking forward to the Socal winter weather! You might see some of that cajun flair in this TR. (Note: y'all and fixin' to!)

I have planned many trips to Disney World in Orlando; however, this will be our first trip to Disneyland, but not first to the Socal area. We are not only celebrating graduation, but I will be running in the Tinkerbell 1/2 Marathon on Sunday. Let's just hope my legs don't give out before the race because of all the park touring! (Sidenote: That's probably why most runners are visiting the park AFTER the race. I'll let you know how that goes after the run.)

We will be enjoying a split stay at Paradise Pier Hotel and the nearby La Quinta Inn and Suites Anaheim. I decided last minute to splurge for the on-site hotel to enjoy Early Entry and proximity to Downtown Disney. We were able to get a room at the La Quinta on points, so the upgrade sort of cancelled each other out. Also, the little guy needs a break during the day(us too!), so with the shortened hours I wanted to get as much time in the park as possible.

Getting There:
My sister will be flying into SNA from New Orleans on United Airlines. I was able to snag a direct flight from Dallas to LAX pretty cheap, since we will be in the area right before the trip. We have a rental car from Enterprise for the week, with a carseat. We were able to get a discount rental code so that it only cost $98 for the week, plus taxes/fees for a standard size car. It seemed to be the best deal out there.

I plan to update the trip report throughout the week with the mundane facts that many of us scour the boards to find such as:
1. EE crowds
2. Identification/Picture process for entry
3. Rare character sightings
4. Common ride breakdowns and early refurb openings
5. Dining
6. Rider Swap experiences
7. RSR FP wait experience for Wednesday and Friday (passes and entry line)
8. Other random notes that I wish I had known

Feel free to ask questions for me to answer this week. I will have free wifi in both hotels. I'm also hoping the crowds will remain low until Friday afternoon, so that we can enjoy the park at our leisure pace.

Hoping for a smooth flight Tuesday and easy check-in process! Here's to a great vacation.

"There are three types of people in this world, those that can do math and those that can't."

Last edited by sray563; 01-14-2013 at 03:15 AM.
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