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Old 06-23-2009, 07:45 PM   #1
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Another question...

I know if we book through ABD it will be more expensive than if we plan a trip ourselves. Please tell me the added bonus of booking through ABD. I will love the non-stress of everything but my husband is a little hesitant. Please help me! thanks!
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Old 06-24-2009, 05:15 AM   #2
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Smile Booking a vacation through ABD gives.....

Originally Posted by brewcrew View Post
I know if we book through ABD it will be more expensive than if we plan a trip ourselves. Please tell me the added bonus of booking through ABD. I will love the non-stress of everything but my husband is a little hesitant. Please help me! thanks! a guided tour of your destination as it also provides you a hassle free vacation at the same time .

For example, on August 1st 2009 at 10am Central time, I will be calling ABD and reserving a trip via the "Emerald Isle" for late May or early June 2010. I will also have a pre-day tagged onto the beginning of the trip. The cost doesn't bother me since I view it as the same as a DCL 10-day Southern Caribbean cruise with a pre-day BUT with much more add ons.

Like being able to see a part of the world you haven't seen before, getting out from underneath the "cookie cutter" DCL Western or Eastern cruises, exploring new foods and customs, etc.

So to me, this is the style of a vacation that I want, desire and expect. I expect a vacation that is "all inclusive" via Disney style; with the opportunity for incidental usuage that fits my style - like going out to an Irish pub on my pre-day...relaxing over a few pints of Guiness while playing a few rounds of darts . Moreover, I have been budgeting these last few months for Ireland via 4 really nice Disney Gift cards - so I will really have an additional nice payment all ready when I reserve this trip in about 30 days. That's just it - it does take planning and budgeting and with these two at hand, your trip will come off as a vacation of a lifetime.
Yes, I am aware that one can save money by planning and going on these trips via NOT going through ABD but....that's just it - I want the Disney experience.

So all in all its all about personal choice and what you want out of a vacation. From what I have been hearing, ABD does provide a small perk for repeat guests (correct me here if I am wrong) just like DCL does. But long story short, ABD is what I want and I choose not a allow price get in between me and my vacation of a lifetime -

Por favor manténgase alejado de las puertas
MY "GETTING SPOOKED @ WDW" - MNSSHP TRIP REPORT; Oct 28th -Nov 4th 2010(w/pics & video)
My "ADVENTURES N IRELAND" - TRIP REPORT; JUNE 2011 (w/pics & video) -
MY "ADVENTURES N HAWAII" -October 2011 trip report (w/pics & video)-

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Old 06-24-2009, 08:05 AM   #3
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I too, thought it was a lot of money compared to if I booked it myself, until I went on the Viva Italia trip. There is no way I could have booked a comparable trip, arranging transportation throughout the country and the sites. There is no way I could rent a car, or lug my suitcases across Italy, not to mention, see this many sites in 9 days. The advantages of having an expert tour guides to the sites is immeasurable, even if you booked tours on your own, you don't know the quality of the guides, as Disney does. We did one tour on our own in Venice, Doge's Palace, and it really demonstrated how much we missed when you don't have a tour guide explaining what is important and what you are seeing. And to have cold bottled water, snacks, rain gear, maps, advice, and help available throughout the tour is wonderful. My friend arranged a Europe tour on her own, and when I explained the Disney concept to her, she said her next tour would be ABD. You don't know what you are looking at when you don't have a tour guide, the hassle of the planning and arranging transportation, and at one hotel in Venice, they switched hotels because they weren't happy when they arrived, and lost money on the first hotel. ABD is worth the price!
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Old 06-24-2009, 10:57 AM   #4
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I totally agree with mwebsite! While you could go to the same places as an ABD on your own, the experience just would not be the same. First off, you have TWO Disney-trained guides who bend over backwards to make sure you have everything that you need, and that the trip goes smoothly, and you get where you are supposed to be, when you are supposed to be there. Once you start the tour, all your transportation is arranged and coordintated by ABD, which includes schlepping your luggage all over creation. They check you in & out of your hotels for you, and your luggage magically appears in your room. The guides provide you with water and snacks whenever you need them. On a lot of trips, you bypass the lines that most people (who arranged their own trips) have to stand in, sometimes for hours. You have local guides arranged for you, who can tell you all about where you are, and what you are seeing. And there are some special touches, on most of the trips, that you just *can't* arrange on your own.

Personally, the lack of worry, the extra care being taken of you, having someone else deal with the hassles so that you can appreciate and enjoy where you are & what you are doing are totally worth it for me!

Check out my Southwest Splendors Trip Report! (2008). 5 parts, full of pics & details & impressions!
My Taming the Last Frontier ABD Alaska Trip Report! (2009)! 7 parts, pictures, stories, & more impressions!
Also check out my ABD/DCL Mediterranean Magic Trip Report! (2010)
NOW POSTING! My DIS Unplugged London/Paris/Disneyland Paris Trip Report! (2011)
Now posting my Greek Odyssey Trip Report (2013)
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Old 06-24-2009, 11:50 AM   #5
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I totally agree with all of you. After day in and day out of organizing family and work life it would be nice to have someone else figure it all out for me. I really want my husband to hear from other people. I do beleive that we will go with ABD because after two Disney cruises, you do get spoiled by the service. And your right about the price, it is about the same for a cruise for a family of six. You guys are awesome! Thanks for all of yoiur insight!
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Old 06-24-2009, 02:47 PM   #6

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My husband and I did two weeks in Italy on our own 3 years ago and then last year did AbD to London/Paris with the DLRP add-on. I think it really depends on the type of personalities you are as to whether or not you would enjoy a group tour. Cost-wise, I don't think its really that much different, if you are planning on staying in the same quality of hotels and seeing the same sites.

The pros to a group tour have been stated by PP's and yes, they are correct, it's an easier way to travel having someone else do all of the research for you and arrange your transportation, hand you your museum tickets, etc.

However, I did feel there were a few cons. 1) You are with this group of people for a great part of your vacation. My husband was not as bothered by this as I was. I'm not a "joiner" and I found by the end of the tour there were a few people I wanted to strangle. 2) There is no comparison in the food experience of traveling on your own vs the food you are offered on a group tour. My husband and I are very adventurous and we were extremely disappointed in the food offerings on the group tour and wished we would have had all of our meals on our own. 3) You have little flexibility to set your own schedule.

If cost is the only issue you have with doing a group tour, then I'd say AbD will provide you with an excellent vacation and the cost is relative to the quality of service and amenities you will receive.
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Old 06-24-2009, 05:46 PM   #7
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We too prefer to travel as a family, not with a group, but we found ABD was a good fit for us. The must see sites were done as a group most often in the morning, with free time in the afternoon, which we enjoyed as a family, almost always by ourselves. Being able to have the highlights covered by disney, allowed us to enjoy our free time more, I think, not having to cram in the "have to see" sites during this time. Since I am the "director" of the vacations, I liked having the itinerary planned by someone else, it made less pressure on me. I also think the activites, such as pasta making and mask making on Viva Italia were actually more fun as a group, than it would have been on our own. I'm sure each group has certain people you gravitate more to than others, and you can be next to anyone you'd like during the tours.
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