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Old 03-01-2013, 10:30 AM   #1006
edk35
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Originally Posted by moviefreak78 View Post
I'm still a Disney novice, but I did get to go out to Anaheim earlier this year with DH on a military trip and the tickets we bought for DL were pretty specific. I'm not sure how the WDW ones go, but I have a feeling you can't upgrade.

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Old 03-01-2013, 12:00 PM   #1007
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Even though it is still more than six months away ... I made our ressies for September! Sooooooooooo excited already!
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Old 03-01-2013, 02:41 PM   #1008
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My dh and I have reservations for the end of August! (At least that's if he doesn't get sequestered one day a week!!!) Anyway, though we love staying at SOG, we always miss the meal plan. Even though I don't think that we save much money with the meal plan, I love the fact that everything is paid for and all that We need is spending/alcohol/tip money. So what we do is.... We make our dining plans, check out the menus, and buy disney gift cards to cover all of our meals. We buy a certain amount each month (its a bill for us) and then we use them for our meals. My question is, does SOG accept Disney gift cards? My gut says that they don't. But if they did, I would increase the amount of gift cards that we are buying and pay the SOG bill with them also. I just love having everything paid for in advance!!!

Now... Onto praying that they work out the budget issue so that we don't lose 20% of my dh income!!

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Old 03-01-2013, 06:02 PM   #1009
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Originally Posted by moviefreak78 View Post
The fam and I are planning our trip in July and are going to be staying at SoG. We are hoping to do the Red, White and Blue package that includes breakfast and dinner. How are these buffets? I'm thinking about just getting them and if anything have nicer lunches planned in the parks.

Also, for those that have stayed in the past, we will be renting a car since we are driving from Jacksonville. Is it better to just drive to the parks or wait for the busses? And just how far is the walk to the Polynesian to grab the monorail there?

So much to think about and I am just getting started! DH just surprised me with this idea a few weeks ago since we have a possible free airflight down there so long as the sequester doesn't ruin it.
I used their meal plan once and will never do it again. It felt like I spent my entire vacation on a bus going back and forth to SOG for meals. Their serving times are very limited, everything is closed by around 9 if I remember correctly. My kids didn't want Mangino's so we had to use either the buffet or Evergreen's, and we all got tired of eating the same things over and over again. We stayed at SOG last Sept. and the only food we ate there was sandwiches (which are just meat on bread, not subs or clubs) and take out pizza. The rest of the time we ate in a park or at Capt. Cook's in the Poly.
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Old 03-04-2013, 11:30 AM   #1010
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I used their meal plan once and will never do it again. It felt like I spent my entire vacation on a bus going back and forth to SOG for meals. Their serving times are very limited, everything is closed by around 9 if I remember correctly. My kids didn't want Mangino's so we had to use either the buffet or Evergreen's, and we all got tired of eating the same things over and over again. We stayed at SOG last Sept. and the only food we ate there was sandwiches (which are just meat on bread, not subs or clubs) and take out pizza. The rest of the time we ate in a park or at Capt. Cook's in the Poly.
I wouldn't really call it a dining plan.
One year with the special rate and free dinner and breakfast buffet we figured that if we only ate one meal there we were still money ahead. We've rarely done the dinner buffet but have found that the times suited us. Since we aren't all that yound any more we usually head back for a late afternoon break to rest and freshen up. Dinner and the back out to whichever parks are open late
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Old 03-04-2013, 12:26 PM   #1011
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SOG room choice - Pros / Cons

I love planning my trip almost as much as the trip itself. So, for the benefit of stretching out my planning, I just made reservations for MLK, jr. weekend next year.

This will be our third time at SOG. The first time we stayed in the Palm rooms, I believe it was in the 3101-3106 area. It was very noisy at night with people coming in at all hours. I had requested one of these rooms from reading a tip somewhere. Also it was very close to the garage and this was back when if you stayed at SOG you could park in the theme park lots for free like the other resort guests, so being close to the garage was important.

The second time I didn't request any particular room ahead of time and we had no choice. We stayed in Magnolia in the absolute farthest away room possible. It was quiet, but so far to walk, especially after a day of walking around the parks. It was also a long walk to the laundry room(microwave). This time we couldn't park in the theme parks lots for free so we only took the bus.

I think I might request the Palm rooms again and put up with the noise. The other thing I like about the Palm rooms is that is was close to the laundry room and hence the microwave. However, my wife likes to go to the jacuzzi, so to be close to that we'd have to be in Magnolia.

Looking at the map, maybe section C would be good. Not far from the microwave, somewhat close to the jacuzzi. We usually use the microwave to heat our instant oatmeal or whatever we have for breakfast.

Map

Anyone have any tips or recommendations? Where did you stay, what were the pros and cons?
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Old 03-04-2013, 12:43 PM   #1012
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Gift Cards

Quote:
Originally Posted by kidsrfun View Post
My dh and I have reservations for the end of August! (At least that's if he doesn't get sequestered one day a week!!!) Anyway, though we love staying at SOG, we always miss the meal plan. Even though I don't think that we save much money with the meal plan, I love the fact that everything is paid for and all that We need is spending/alcohol/tip money. So what we do is.... We make our dining plans, check out the menus, and buy disney gift cards to cover all of our meals. We buy a certain amount each month (its a bill for us) and then we use them for our meals. My question is, does SOG accept Disney gift cards? My gut says that they don't. But if they did, I would increase the amount of gift cards that we are buying and pay the SOG bill with them also. I just love having everything paid for in advance!!!

Now... Onto praying that they work out the budget issue so that we don't lose 20% of my dh income!!

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SOG does not take Disney gift cards or Reward cards. Not even for tickets. Wish they did, our whole vacation would be paid for. You could always set up a special savings account (like a Christmas Club) that you do not touch until the trip.

We did the Disney dining plan...once. Back when tips and tax were included and it was a really good deal....if you eat a lot. It was waaaayyy to much food. And I hate being tied to dining reservations. That is the only way you can use the table service credits since Disney's dining plan has become so popular.

The last time we went, I looked into the new counter service option and it was just not for us. We did one reservation at Epcot (right on the lake for Illusions) and explored the counter service options in the parks.

Even with all Disney's special offers, we will still be staying at SOG. I like the relative quite after a hecktic day at the parks. The walk to the Poly to catch the monorail is really pretty early in the morning and not very far at all. They say half a mile, but it doesn't seem that far. I have heard on the boards, that at the larger Disney resorts you can walk that far just to get to the front desk and the bus stops are even further.

If you are so inclined you can have one of the golf carts take you to the edge of the property. If you don't see one, just ask at the front desk and they can arrange one. We only took it once last time, near the end of our stay. I had had knee surgery that year and by day four I appreciated the rest before facing the parks. There is no charge, but I like to tip the driver...but then, I am the kind that tips housekeeping too.

We like the morning buffet. There is a lot of choice and they will make egge or omlets to order while you wait. The dinner buffet is OK...nothing to write home about, but we do not go to Disney to eat. It's just something we have to do while we are there.

If you want fine dining, go to the Poly or the Boardwalk. Or catch the monorail to one of the other "monorail resorts". Epcot also has some nice restaurants.

This trip we are going to have dinner at Kouzzina by Cat Cora® on the Boardwalk on a park hopping day between HS and Epcot. Since I am Greek, I want to see if it is as good as everybody says. But a table service meal every day is too much hassle and too much food so we save the time (and the $$) by getting counter service at our favorite spots in the parks.

What ever you do I am sure you will have a great time.
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Last edited by Dragontears; 03-04-2013 at 12:51 PM.
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Old 03-04-2013, 01:00 PM   #1013
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Magnolia verses Palm

Quote:
Originally Posted by mike72688 View Post
I love planning my trip almost as much as the trip itself. So, for the benefit of stretching out my planning, I just made reservations for MLK, jr. weekend next year.

This will be our third time at SOG. The first time we stayed in the Palm rooms, I believe it was in the 3101-3106 area. It was very noisy at night with people coming in at all hours. I had requested one of these rooms from reading a tip somewhere. Also it was very close to the garage and this was back when if you stayed at SOG you could park in the theme park lots for free like the other resort guests, so being close to the garage was important.

The second time I didn't request any particular room ahead of time and we had no choice. We stayed in Magnolia in the absolute farthest away room possible. It was quiet, but so far to walk, especially after a day of walking around the parks. It was also a long walk to the laundry room(microwave). This time we couldn't park in the theme parks lots for free so we only took the bus.

I think I might request the Palm rooms again and put up with the noise. The other thing I like about the Palm rooms is that is was close to the laundry room and hence the microwave. However, my wife likes to go to the jacuzzi, so to be close to that we'd have to be in Magnolia.

Looking at the map, maybe section C would be good. Not far from the microwave, somewhat close to the jacuzzi. We usually use the microwave to heat our instant oatmeal or whatever we have for breakfast.

Map

Anyone have any tips or recommendations? Where did you stay, what were the pros and cons?
Mike72688,

We have stayed in Magnolia and have been pleased...except for the time we were also at the very end. Section C should fit your needs but be sure to check the room number range. Reservations needs them, not the section. When I called to make our Sunshine Package reservation, she didn't even know the map had sections on it. She said the computer will take a roome range though.

Good luck and have a great time on your trip.
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Old 03-04-2013, 01:11 PM   #1014
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We have stayed in room 2101 - the first room on the 2nd floor of the Palm wing and 2105 and never had any issues with noise. We will continue to request one of those rooms! In fact we commented that is was surprising how quiet it was considering the location. Maybe you had bad luck with noisy guest or we've been lucky
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Old 03-04-2013, 09:44 PM   #1015
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We LOVE staying in 2102 or that vicinity. We also never experienced any noise. We always ask for that area.
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Old 03-05-2013, 09:50 AM   #1016
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We've also not had trouble staying near the beginning of Palm. We have stayed at the VERRYYYYYYY end and it's forever and a day to get there especially at night. lol.
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Old 03-05-2013, 10:26 AM   #1017
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In December, we were in 5108. Never heard another person & walk wasn't too far. Actually, it was our best location yet.
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Old 03-05-2013, 10:07 PM   #1018
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Hi all! Newbie here! So glad I found this thread! We are planning a trip for the last week of August and there are so many decisions to make! I am trying to work my way through the info, so please excuse me if this has already been asked and answered. Is driving from SoG to AKL the best option? How long is the drive, typically? And how much is parking? DS is a (mostly) vegan and it appears that the restaurants at AKL have the most options for him. Any advice is much appreciated!
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Old 03-05-2013, 10:19 PM   #1019
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Hi all! Newbie here! So glad I found this thread! We are planning a trip for the last week of August and there are so many decisions to make! I am trying to work my way through the info, so please excuse me if this has already been asked and answered. Is driving from SoG to AKL the best option? How long is the drive, typically? And how much is parking? DS is a (mostly) vegan and it appears that the restaurants at AKL have the most options for him. Any advice is much appreciated!
Driving is your best option to get to Animal Kingdom Lodge and parking will be free though you may actually have to park pretty far away, I've noticed that the spots they set aside for dinner guests are usually in another lot. LOL.

The other best way to get there is to get to MK and take the AKL bus directly.

The drive won't be more than 15 min or so. http://goo.gl/maps/1noJh
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Old 03-06-2013, 02:08 AM   #1020
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Originally Posted by Figg View Post
Hi all! Newbie here! So glad I found this thread! We are planning a trip for the last week of August and there are so many decisions to make! I am trying to work my way through the info, so please excuse me if this has already been asked and answered. Is driving from SoG to AKL the best option? How long is the drive, typically? And how much is parking? DS is a (mostly) vegan and it appears that the restaurants at AKL have the most options for him. Any advice is much appreciated!
Pretty much any restaurant on Disney property will accomodate a vegan or any other dietary preference. All you have to do is specify.
I have food allergies and they have handled it very well. I also know those that have celiac, and those that are vegan who have been accomodated.
Check this page out..
http://allears.net/din/dining.htm#diets
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