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Old 03-07-2012, 02:09 PM   #16
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Originally Posted by danalin View Post
I have used dreams unlimited from this site many times and they are really easy to work with they have always gotten the best deal for us I have recommended them to everyone I know!
Not only that but Dreams Unlimited Travel is a major sponsor that pays to keep these boards up and running for the enjoyment of all!
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Old 03-07-2012, 04:26 PM   #17
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Though with the help of the Disboard, you would probably be just fine by yourself, folks have listed some very good suggestions regarding Travel Agents (You might be more comfortable with having one). Keep in mind that changes to your reservation have to be made by your TA, so if you have difficulty reaching him/her, you may miss out on some great deals. We used a popular auto association last time, and had to alert them when discounts came up. We would have missed Free Dining had I not been following the Disboards, and even then we had a difficult time reaching her. This was was stressful and frustrating, since I worried that we might miss the opportunity. I feel as if we did all the work! As to all those perks through that TA - though we paid in full fairly early in the process (4 months or so), we did not receive the paper work necessary in time to reserve our preferred seating for the fireworks. I see no down side to a Disney Authorized TA, but I urge you to keep informed here on the disboard.
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Old 03-07-2012, 07:18 PM   #18
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We used Traci Elswick from Off to Neverland Travel.

Sure we could book straight through Disney however it never hurts to have another set of (free) eyes helping us find great deals and tips
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Old 03-07-2012, 08:48 PM   #19
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we went to mouseears and talked with Tammy Kennedy. she was super-helpful and handled the biggest hassles for us!
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Old 03-07-2012, 09:10 PM   #20
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LindaNorton@themagicforless.com

There is no charge for a travel agent. Linda has booked a few of our disney trips. She is always available and answers her emails very quickly. Yes, I could do it too, but she has ALWAYS been able to get me dining reservations 99% of the time where and around when I want...that is something I can't always get! If you ask her she will give you plenty of suggestions...give her a price point Tell her Sandi from IL sent you!
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Old 03-07-2012, 09:23 PM   #21
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I've used Small World Vacations and Dreams Unlimited. I actually prefer Dreams Unlimited just a little bit more than SMV. Our agent's name (Dreams) this time is Kelly. She's awesome!!
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Old 03-07-2012, 11:34 PM   #22
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Wow! Thank you so much guys!

I would plan the trip myself, but this is my first time ever planning a vacation and I don't want to mess up. Although looking up all of this info is fun, it's also a little overwhelming. I'll keep in mind everything you guys have said. I'll be sure to keep my eye on the boards. Planning this trip doesn't feel so scary now.

goofy4tink: I had no idea it was against the rules. Honestly I haven't had much free time to read the rules. I just had enough foresight to know that I was going to need some serious advice on planning a trip of this scale. Thanks for letting me know.
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Old 03-08-2012, 12:54 PM   #23
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Sorry for the double post: But I was wondering if I'm planning this too early. My grandmother is telling me that 2014 is a long time away so I should just wait until then. All of the information I'm reading is overwhelming to me though. I have a feeling that if I wait I wont be able to plan as well as I would like. Being in college can really put a damper on my free time and this semester I'm taking easy courses. I figured I should take advantage of having more free time, but I still wonder if I'm planning this too early...
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Old 03-08-2012, 12:58 PM   #24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Spyells View Post
Sorry for the double post: But I was wondering if I'm planning this too early. My grandmother is telling me that 2014 is a long time away so I should just wait until then. All of the information I'm reading is overwhelming to me though. I have a feeling that if I wait I wont be able to plan as well as I would like. Being in college can really put a damper on my free time and this semester I'm taking easy courses. I figured I should take advantage of having more free time, but I still wonder if I'm planning this too early...
You really are pretty far out if you're planning on going in 2014. I would wait until about a year from the time your trip is planned for. That gives you plenty of time to make plans. Besides, if you start now, you're going to be making a ton of changes along the way.
So...keep reading these boards..they are a great way to get lots of up to date knowledge. Ask your questions. Have a ball learning. The time to actually start your planning is not that far away!!!
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Old 09-17-2012, 01:43 PM   #25
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Never too early...more time to prepare.

I don't think it's ever too early to start planning your next Disney vacation, but it is really impossible to nail down details until at least a year out. I started "planning" for my April 2013 trip pretty much when I got home from my May 2011 trip, but I am just now calling an agent to book. It seems like most of the "deals" really start showing up a few months out. That being said, I don't think it would hurt to find an agent and call with a few questions. This will help you know what to expect when you do call to book your trip. You can learn a lot from your Disney travel agent. I also recommend using a DISNEY agent, as they are specialists in DISNEY vacations.

But my advice is, just keep doing research. The agents are a HUGE help, but the more you know, the more prepared you will be for your trip.

My suggestions of things to make sure you read up on before now and then:
1) Packing lists - A great way to make sure you don't forget something. A lot of people have some great suggestions!
2) Modes of Transportation - Disney's (free) Magical express from airport (RSVP through agent) and on-property transportation (boats, monorail, busses, etc.)
3) Dining at Disney - Dining plans, individual restaurants, and special dining experiences (character dining and dinner shows). Agents are a HUGE help with learning about dining at Disney and they can help you book your reservations.
4) Touringplans - Some sites have "Touring Plans" that give you some great ideas about how to tour the parks to reduce wait times and/or walking. They are specialized for different kinds of travel groups (groups with kids, groups with teens, one day, two day, etc). I like touringplans.com. They also predict crowd levels for each day in each park and tell you which parks to avoid on certain days. It also gets updated so make sure to check back every now and then. They also give you current line wait times, to give you an idea of what you can expect. It's a subscription service, but you might find it worth the investment. I do! (There are other sites that predict the best weeks to visit. This may help you choose a week in December.)
5) Hours and showtimes - Park hours and show times are not released until around 6 months out, so it's difficult to "plan" your days, but you can get a general idea of how long the parks will stay open and what time of day the shows and parades are. This also helps you know how many days you need per park. (I like touringplans.com for this as well. They post set hours, as well as predicted hours for unset days.)
6) Closures - As your trip gets closer, check for attraction closures. This may help you choose a date for your trip, or at least prepare you so you aren't disappointed when you get there to find an attraction closed.
7) Podcasts - If you want to get REALLY into learning about Disney, find an online podcast to listen to. You can learn a lot about the history of the parks, overlooked details and suggestions for your visit. My personal favorite is wdwradio, which you can stream online or download from itunes for free.
8) Special experiences - Disney offers a variety of "special experiences." Backstage tours, fireworks cruises, wildlife encounters, park tours, even haircuts! You may want to add one to your trip. You can book these through your agent.
9) Seasonal Special Events - Since you're planning your trip in December, the holiday season will be in full swing. Look for special Holiday events that might be going on during your stay. Some of these are "extra" and will need to be booked with your Disney travel agent.
10) Weather - Get an idea of what the weather will be like so you know what to expect and what to pack.

I hope these tips will help get you started. Keep surfing the boards and good luck choosing an agent and planning your trip!!
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Old 04-21-2013, 03:10 PM   #26
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I'm just a little obsessive compulsive.

Last year, when we decided to switch from AAA to a Disney Certified Travel agent, I emailed something like 15 agencies. I got 10 replies.

I narrowed it down to three, any of whom I would have been happy to work with:
Tracey Heinrichs at
Dreams Unlimited Travel

Jodi Pew at
Our Laughing Place Travel

Lynn Mirante at
Ears To You Travel


Of those, we went with Tracey H at Dreams Unlimited, and will use her again any time we need a Disney travel agent-- she was fabulous!

ETA-- Sorry folks, I have NO IDEA how I happen to have replied on a 6 month old thread.
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Last edited by Aliceacc; 04-21-2013 at 03:29 PM.
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Old 04-21-2013, 03:20 PM   #27
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Quote:
Not only that but Dreams Unlimited Travel is a major sponsor that pays to keep these boards up and running for the enjoyment of all!

Actually Dreams Unlimited OWNS the disboards.com.....

Last edited by RubySlippers; 04-21-2013 at 03:26 PM.
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Old 04-21-2013, 03:38 PM   #28
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Yes, if you're shopping for a T/A, seems like it would be good form to at least give Dreams Unlimited a call...

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Old 04-21-2013, 06:58 PM   #29
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Rachel P from Snapshot Getaways! She's fantastic!
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Old 04-23-2013, 08:34 AM   #30
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I'm going to close this thread, as it's becoming a magnet for agents trying to solicit business, which is not permitted on the DISboards.
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