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Old 10-09-2007, 12:17 PM   #1
jenksdj's Avatar
Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: Calgary, AB
Posts: 145

How to surprise kids with a trip to Disneyland

We have been to Disneyland once before (April 2007) and told the kids about the trip 3 weeks in advance. That way they had time to plan and get excited about it. They are 5 and 7. Now that we have already been, and they will know what to expect, we are considering surprising them closer to the actual day (or maybe on the day we leave, at the airport, or upon our arrival at the DLH?). We are going Nov 10-17.

Just wondering if anyone out there has planned a surprise trip in the past, or has any great ideas for how it can be done to maximize the fun and excitement!!!!

Can't wait to hear your stories/suggestions!
me DH DD12 DD10

First trip to DL April/07
2nd trip to DL Nov/07
3rd trip to DL Dec/08
First trip to WDW May/10
4th trip to DL Nov/10
Next trip to DL Oct/12
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Old 10-09-2007, 12:31 PM   #2
Off we go to the wonderful land of Disney!
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Location: North Dakota In a van down by the river... Just kidding
Posts: 57

We surprised our kids the last trip we took to WDW about 4 weeks before we left. This time we surprised our kids again with the announcement we would celebrate my youngest son's birthday at............ Disneyland! (over thanksgiving break)

I thought I should have a girlfriend call and pretend to be a princess for my 3 year old and say "I'm so excited I get to see you again...."

Just a thought! I love surprises.... I'd plan on telling them a week or two ahead of time just in case for their planning sake!
Anjanette I'm to blessed to be stressed! ~ John Travolta
DH DS 12 DS 8 DD 3

I've been gobbled Thanks LisaInCalifornia
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Old 10-09-2007, 01:44 PM   #3
Sweet!!! Totally!!!!!
YAY for good weather!
It's that Disney Magic, I don't know how it works but it does!
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Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: Suisun City CA
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We were there in April of 07 too......LOL on that trip we surprised them by just driving there!!! We are about 6 hours away and we got up one Friday, loaded them into the car and left. I had packed their bags and we put them in the van the night before...they had NO idea until after we checked into our hotel. They thought that was the coolest surprise ever! LOL

This year we went in July, about 3 weeks before we did a treasure hunt, the treasure they found was the trip itinerary. I just had random clues about the house and they followed them to the prize.

Good luck with your surprise!! And have a GREAT trip!!
Kerri DBF DD18 DD14

We took 14 trips from July 07-July 08 and around 16 from Jan 09-Jan 10. We did 5 trips 2011-2012. 2012-2013 4 trips.

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Old 10-09-2007, 02:14 PM   #4
Oops, no more!
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We surprised our then 11 and 7 y.o. kids with a December trip to Disneyland a couple years ago. We waited til DH came home from work, then I said we should open a few Christmas presents early. My DD11 was totally against that--she said it would ruin Christmas, yadda yadda. So she and her brother started opening Disney themed gifts--matching t-shirts, Mickey candy, a Disneyland book. Finally, the last gift was a plush Mickey ordered from Disneyshopping.com with "Off to Disneyland!" embroidered on it. The kids were looking at the stuff and saying that once again, Mom (me) had lost her mind. And I told them to read what Mickey said again, and they did but still didn't understand. Finally, I told them to read "Off to Disneyland" and then I said, "Tomorrow! Morning! You're already packed--we need to be at the airport at 8 a.m.!" They were stunned but thrilled, and the whole time we were there they kept saying they couldn't believe we were in Disneyland! It was so hard to keep the surprise, but so worth it when they found out!
I like the treasure hunt idea with Disney clues. I also like waiting til the last possible moment to tell them!
Have fun!
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Old 10-09-2007, 02:45 PM   #5
Earning My Ears
Join Date: May 2007
Posts: 21

We just got back from a "surprise" trip for our kids (ages 9 & 4). The kids thought my wife and I were going to Mexico and that they were going to stay with their grandparents. So, packing a suitcase for them didn't raise any questions.

Anyway, we told them that their grandparents were going to meet us at the airport. When we arrived at the airport, we handed the oldest one a letter to read to her little sister that basically said, "We're going to miss you kids while were gone and to be good for their grandparents and that we'll bring them back something special from Mexico." The letter had a P.S. that read, "Actually Mommy & Daddy aren't going to Mexico, all four of us are going to..... Then we handed them an envelope with a piece of paper that said DISNEYLAND with pictures of Mickey, Minney & the castle.

Talk about being surprised!!! We video recorded the whole thing. Good luck with your surprise.
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Old 10-09-2007, 03:37 PM   #6
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I asked this recently & the thread was 3 pages long...so I'll just copy & paste for when you have time to scan through - still haven't decided what to do myself!

Trip Report '08:http://www.disboards.com/showthread.php?t=1687425

Disneyland Adventures so far:

'80 - '83 - '87 - '89 - '93 - '96 - '97 - '02 - '08 - '10
DD, 14yo: '02 - '08 - '10 - '12(school)
DS, 8yo '08 - '10
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Old 10-09-2007, 04:59 PM   #7
Tinkerbell... mood subject to change without notice.
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Location: 36 minutes from the happiest place on earth!
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When we moved to CA about 25 years ago. I had already been once. But one day Dad came home from work early and we all got into his truck. Mom told me to take a rest as we had a long drive. I was told we were meeting freinds for dinner. I was about 7. Well when I woke up mom asked me to get the map out of the glove box. Inside were my Mickey Ears.. So I knew we were going...

Now a day's I can't surprise my kids as we are AP holders. So we only take the freeway to get there . So if we are getting on the freeway they know we are going.

In fact we are going after school tommorrow. As I have a day off of school.
My son will know though. As I will pick him up in the car and not walk..

Now trying how to figure out how to surprise him with our Hawaii trip.
Mom to a and
Happily been a DL AP holder since '05!

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Old 10-09-2007, 05:47 PM   #8
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Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: Calgary, AB
Posts: 145

Thanks for the link to the other thread. I'll look at it after the kids go to bed tonight.

Thanks to all of you who posted here as well. Some great ideas! I'll let you know what we end up doing. It's pretty hard to keep it under my hat, but at least there are only 32 days left!
me DH DD12 DD10

First trip to DL April/07
2nd trip to DL Nov/07
3rd trip to DL Dec/08
First trip to WDW May/10
4th trip to DL Nov/10
Next trip to DL Oct/12
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Old 10-09-2007, 08:30 PM   #9
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Location: Las Vegas
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We went for the first time last May. I sent the girls to school with a packed lunch like any other day. (We had to open our office in the morning so we couldn't leave early.) I picked them up from school before they had lunch so they were really confused. After I assured them that no one was sick and that no tragedy had occured we got into our packed car and started driving. We live in Las Vegas and my youngest DD was convinced that we were going to San Diego since she had just gone there for Sea Camp with her school and had traveled on the same road. They didn't figure it out until we saw a billboard close to the hotel. It was really great to surprise them. We also had an added surprise. Friends of ours met us at the hotel. We didn't tell our DDs that they were coming. Their DD knocked on our door and our DDs were surprised all over again.

Overall it was a great trip!

Dream - July 19, 2011 (Bahamas), Magic - July 13, 2008 (Mexican Riviera) , June 24, 2006 (Western Double Dip), March 5, 2005 (Eastern), October 25, 2003 (Western)
Multiple Disneyland trips - 2007 to Present, Bay Lake Towers July 2012, July 2011 & August 2009, Port Orleans - May 2001, Offsite WDW - April 1997 --- DVC Member since Dec. 2008
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Old 10-09-2007, 08:40 PM   #10
Earning My Ears
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We are going on Friday morning and will be surprising our kids on....Friday morning! They have never been and it's both of their birthdays next week. I love surprising them with things(and they love it too!)and this will be the biggest one so far!
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