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Old 01-17-2013, 04:54 PM   #1741
dizzyblonde
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Originally Posted by mikegood2 View Post
Add me to the list of people wanting to know, but I think we need to just give it some more time to sort itself out.

I'm hoping that enough info and some touring plans come out in advance enough to our trip in June. If the new FP+ has little effect on the old FP system, I may just stick with the old. If it does have a noticeable impact I may need to experiment, maybe get my 3 FP's for an afternoon and open the EMH at a different park?
I'm going next month & will be at a work conference during days, so if FP+ is rolled out that quickly, it would be great for me to ensure I get to ride the marquee rides at each park.

I was planning to buy 4-day Discover Disney passes once I arrived at the Dolphin, but I'm willing to buy them in advance if it ensure I get to use the FP+ system!
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Old 01-17-2013, 11:20 PM   #1742
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I second the opinion of not wanting to wait for transportation. The Epcot resort area is great for being able to just walk instead of wait for a boat. Plus the walk is always beautiful and attraction in itself.
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Old 01-18-2013, 06:43 AM   #1743
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Kenright - you are arriving just one day after us. Love the idea of walking or taking a boat to one of the parks - totally relaxing!!
Actually, i love looking out the window and seeing the Friendship boats coming and going.
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Old 01-18-2013, 01:56 PM   #1744
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Kenright - you are arriving just one day after us. Love the idea of walking or taking a boat to one of the parks - totally relaxing!!
Actually, i love looking out the window and seeing the Friendship boats coming and going.
One of my favorite things!
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Old 01-18-2013, 05:24 PM   #1745
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They're not in a rush! Such a relaxed way to get where you need to go.
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Old 01-19-2013, 12:15 PM   #1746
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Now that we have our rooms booked for June, I think I'm going to take others advice and check back periodicaly to see of we can get a better rate. I do have a few questions about that though. Also we booked an executive suite, so we can't check the rates online, we have to call.

1) When you call do you get prices like as a "new" person or do you say upfront that you have already booked a room, but want to check if prices have dropped?

2) How often do you call? Every few weeks, weekly or multiple times a week? I know it well very by person, but just curious what others do.

3) Is their a certain time or number that are better than other?

4) My brother booked, but I would probably be the one checking. If they quote a better price should I try to get it changed or contact my brother, since its on his card, and have him change it (hoping he gets the same price)

Sorry if I rattled on too much, but would like others feedback.
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Old 01-19-2013, 03:26 PM   #1747
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Originally Posted by mikegood2 View Post
Now that we have our rooms booked for June, I think I'm going to take others advice and check back periodicaly to see of we can get a better rate. I do have a few questions about that though. Also we booked an executive suite, so we can't check the rates online, we have to call.

1) When you call do you get prices like as a "new" person or do you say upfront that you have already booked a room, but want to check if prices have dropped?

2) How often do you call? Every few weeks, weekly or multiple times a week? I know it well very by person, but just curious what others do.

3) Is their a certain time or number that are better than other?

4) My brother booked, but I would probably be the one checking. If they quote a better price should I try to get it changed or contact my brother, since its on his card, and have him change it (hoping he gets the same price)

Sorry if I rattled on too much, but would like others feedback.
Mike: This is just my opinion, but I would watch for new "specials" or discounts being offered on the regular rooms....... that could be an indicator that you'll find discounts for all room types and, in that case, I would be on the phone immediately!

Check the "special offers" page often. Occasionally, they will offer a discount specifically for Suites.

Otherwise, I would likely call 2 or 3 times a month. I always call their 888# (888-828-8850). I have them on my speed-dial!! I find it's always best to call before 5pm (Eastern time).

I'm not sure what to recommend with regard to the reservation being in your brother's name. You should definitely see if they will honor the lower rate, but they might need to speak with your brother so make sure you get the agent's name and very specific information about the lower rate.
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Old 01-20-2013, 09:12 AM   #1748
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quick question

We're looking forward to our third S/D stay in a few weeks (after changing resort ressies a number of times). We plan to do Epcot morning EMH this time for the first time. Do we walk (or take boat) to the International Gateway for EMH as we do with regular rope drop, then walk all the way to Future World?

Also, I wanted to confirm what others upthread have been noticing about the Teacher discount versus the AAA discount. We originally booked with the Teacher discount, which was once the best available discount for us. But it was just too high so we switched to a WDW moderate to save $$. We were never totally happy with that idea, so I decided to call Starwood directly and ask about the AAA discount. Well, it turned out to be better than the Teacher discount. We need two rooms, so the savings were substantial. Our standard rooms are $183.20 each for President's week with AAA.

There were no Cash and Points available for our week, but I did get a free nights with points.

We also are finding that the Swan is consistently higher in price than the Dolphin which I find really curious. I don't recall there being a price difference in the past.

Hope this helps someone with planning.
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Old 01-20-2013, 10:32 AM   #1749
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mikegood2 View Post
Now that we have our rooms booked for June, I think I'm going to take others advice and check back periodicaly to see of we can get a better rate. I do have a few questions about that though. Also we booked an executive suite, so we can't check the rates online, we have to call.

1) When you call do you get prices like as a "new" person or do you say upfront that you have already booked a room, but want to check if prices have dropped?

2) How often do you call? Every few weeks, weekly or multiple times a week? I know it well very by person, but just curious what others do.

3) Is their a certain time or number that are better than other?

4) My brother booked, but I would probably be the one checking. If they quote a better price should I try to get it changed or contact my brother, since its on his card, and have him change it (hoping he gets the same price)

Sorry if I rattled on too much, but would like others feedback.
My favorite tip....

We booked a grand suite last summer, however, they adjusted it so that we were paying for an executive suite with a teacher rate and then a "stay connected" rate to add another bedroom. This way, we got a 2 bedroom suite for much less than an outright grand suite would've cost It was PHENOMENAL!!

I did continue to call about once a week or once every two weeks after we booked to check on lower rates, and every time they acted like I was crazy to think I was going to get a better deal than what we booked
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**July 2010 - Animal Kingdom Lodge (Savanna View)
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**June 2013 - Port Orleans Riverside (Royal Room)
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Old 01-20-2013, 10:36 AM   #1750
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mainebound View Post
We're looking forward to our third S/D stay in a few weeks (after changing resort ressies a number of times). We plan to do Epcot morning EMH this time for the first time. Do we walk (or take boat) to the International Gateway for EMH as we do with regular rope drop, then walk all the way to Future World?

Also, I wanted to confirm what others upthread have been noticing about the Teacher discount versus the AAA discount. We originally booked with the Teacher discount, which was once the best available discount for us. But it was just too high so we switched to a WDW moderate to save $$. We were never totally happy with that idea, so I decided to call Starwood directly and ask about the AAA discount. Well, it turned out to be better than the Teacher discount. We need two rooms, so the savings were substantial. Our standard rooms are $183.20 each for President's week with AAA.

There were no Cash and Points available for our week, but I did get a free nights with points.

We also are finding that the Swan is consistently higher in price than the Dolphin which I find really curious. I don't recall there being a price difference in the past.

Hope this helps someone with planning.
Yes, boat or walk to International Gateway. At rope drop, it's really not a bad walk to Future World.

For about a year now, the Teacher discount has not been nearly what it was in years past It often is comparable to the AAA discount, but there are times when the AAA discount is better.

Swan is a Westin branded resort; Dolphin is a Sheraton. Swan is typically $10-$20 more per night, although the rate each resort sets is based on availability so there will be times when they are equal cost per night, or Swan cheaper -- but that is not the norm.
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Old 01-20-2013, 10:40 AM   #1751
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mainebound View Post
We're looking forward to our third S/D stay in a few weeks (after changing resort ressies a number of times). We plan to do Epcot morning EMH this time for the first time. Do we walk (or take boat) to the International Gateway for EMH as we do with regular rope drop, then walk all the way to Future World?

Also, I wanted to confirm what others upthread have been noticing about the Teacher discount versus the AAA discount. We originally booked with the Teacher discount, which was once the best available discount for us. But it was just too high so we switched to a WDW moderate to save $$. We were never totally happy with that idea, so I decided to call Starwood directly and ask about the AAA discount. Well, it turned out to be better than the Teacher discount. We need two rooms, so the savings were substantial. Our standard rooms are $183.20 each for President's week with AAA.

There were no Cash and Points available for our week, but I did get a free nights with points.

We also are finding that the Swan is consistently higher in price than the Dolphin which I find really curious. I don't recall there being a price difference in the past.

Hope this helps someone with planning.

Did you try doing the teacher rate on the first room and the stay connected rate on the second room? It's a better deal than using the teacher or AAA rate on both rooms!
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**Thanksgiving 2007 - Pop Century
**July 2008 - Grand Floridian, Coronado Springs Jr. Suite, Contemporary Club Level MK View
**July 2009 - Boardwalk Inn Deluxe Club Level
**July 2010 - Animal Kingdom Lodge (Savanna View)
**June 2012 - Dolphin (2 Bedroom Grand Suite)
**June 2013 - Port Orleans Riverside (Royal Room)
**July 2014 - Bay Lake Tower (2 Bedroom, Theme Park View)
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Old 01-20-2013, 11:28 AM   #1752
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Originally Posted by SRUAlmn View Post
Did you try doing the teacher rate on the first room and the stay connected rate on the second room? It's a better deal than using the teacher or AAA rate on both rooms!
No! I have never even heard of the stay connected rate. Going to call later today. Thank you!
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Old 01-20-2013, 11:36 AM   #1753
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No! I have never even heard of the stay connected rate. Going to call later today. Thank you!
No problem! We had to talk to a couple different staff members first because we were being told we couldn't use multiple discounts, and we kept saying, "We're not. The Teacher discount is on one room, and the Connected one is on the second room." A manager and a great staff member finally helped us make it work Here's the info from the Swan & Dolphin site:

--------------------------------------------------------------------------

Stay Connected in 2013! Now is the perfect time for you and your family to stay with us at the Walt Disney World Swan and Dolphin hotels. Book any rate plan listed below, then call us at 888-828-8850 to reserve a second guest room starting as low as $129*. Be sure to ask for "Stay Connected" when you call!



Terms & Conditions
•Offer is valid at the Walt Disney World Swan and Dolphin for stays January 1 - December 23, 2013.
• Rates are per room, per night, based on single/double occupancy and subject to availability at time of booking.
• A limited number of rooms may be available at these rates and additional restrictions and blackout dates apply.
• Offer is for individual leisure travel and not valid for guests staying on a negotiated group rate.
•Second room reservation must be under the same name as the first room and must have the same arrival and departure date.
•If one room is cancelled, the lower rated CONNECT room must be cancelled. The hotel reserves the right to correct any errors made by guest on cancelling the higher rated room.
• Basic room rates do not include additional per room per night charges that may be imposed or state/local taxes. The Resort Service Package is charged per room, per night. Please view all details here.
• Not responsible for typographical errors or omissions.
•Void where prohibited by law.
• Starwood reserves the right to discontinue this offer at any time.


© 2013 Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc.
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**Christmas 1997 - Polynesian
**September 2004 - Pop Century (first trip together)
**January 2007 - POFQ (Wedding Planning Trip)
**July 2007 - Contemporary (WDW Wedding & Honeymoon)
**Thanksgiving 2007 - Pop Century
**July 2008 - Grand Floridian, Coronado Springs Jr. Suite, Contemporary Club Level MK View
**July 2009 - Boardwalk Inn Deluxe Club Level
**July 2010 - Animal Kingdom Lodge (Savanna View)
**June 2012 - Dolphin (2 Bedroom Grand Suite)
**June 2013 - Port Orleans Riverside (Royal Room)
**July 2014 - Bay Lake Tower (2 Bedroom, Theme Park View)
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Old 01-20-2013, 02:46 PM   #1754
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Alas, the Stay Connected rate is not available for our dates. Still happy with the rates, though!
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Old 01-20-2013, 03:10 PM   #1755
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How To Get To The Dolphin

When I've stayed at the Dolphin in the past, I've always driven. This time I'm thinking of flying into MCO for my first solo trip. I'm not sure how I'll get to the Dolphin so I'd appreciate any suggestions.
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