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Old 10-11-2012, 08:12 PM   #1
jackster
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Smile Excited...and overwhelmed!

My husband, two kids (ages 5 and 8) and I are going to DW for the first time and we are SO VERY excited! Actually, we won't tell our kids until Christmas; they're gonna lose their minds!

We're planning to go the week of Jan. 28 and stay 5 or 6 days. I was told that it's usually not as crowded or hot around that time.

We're about 600 miles away from Florida -- plus my daughter gets crazy-car sick -- so we're definitely not driving. I'm hoping with airfare, park tickets and hotel, it'll cost around $3k. Is that realistic? Should I try to book the trip online or will I get a better deal through a travel agent?

We'll book a room at a moderate or value-priced resort on the premises to be able to access the shuttles. Are there any hotels that are better than others or are they all pretty decent? I definitely think we should also get the fast pass for rides and maybe the meal pass as well.

I'm sure this forum gets asked this question all the time, but I need some helpful hints. What other things should I keep in mind for this first trip? Is there a thread somewhere on this forum that will provide a wealth of information for the first-time Disney visitor? Help, please!!!

Thanks,

Jackie
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Old 10-11-2012, 08:22 PM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jackster View Post
My husband, two kids (ages 5 and 8) and I are going to DW for the first time and we are SO VERY excited! Actually, we won't tell our kids until Christmas; they're gonna lose their minds!

We're planning to go the week of Jan. 28 and stay 5 or 6 days. I was told that it's usually not as crowded or hot around that time.

We're about 600 miles away from Florida -- plus my daughter gets crazy-car sick -- so we're definitely not driving. I'm hoping with airfare, park tickets and hotel, it'll cost around $3k. Is that realistic? Should I try to book the trip online or will I get a better deal through a travel agent?

We'll book a room at a moderate or value-priced resort on the premises to be able to access the shuttles. Are there any hotels that are better than others or are they all pretty decent? I definitely think we should also get the fast pass for rides and maybe the meal pass as well.

I'm sure this forum gets asked this question all the time, but I need some helpful hints. What other things should I keep in mind for this first trip? Is there a thread somewhere on this forum that will provide a wealth of information for the first-time Disney visitor? Help, please!!!

Thanks,

Jackie
Welcome Just a few ideas to get you started........

Have you set up an account on the WDW site and priced out a stay at a few different resorts?

Did you check for discounts for the time period you're going?

Do you belong to AAA? Ask them for a quote, too.

I'd go to the library and grab a few WDW guidebooks--my fave is "TheUnofficial Guide"----lots of good info....
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Old 10-11-2012, 08:29 PM   #3
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Welcome!

We love January trips. To come in under 3000, and fly you may need to look at the value resorts. AAA discounts can also be very helpful. I always do my research on line and then call and book with a WDW agent over the phone. They can be very helpful, especially when you book for the first time. Your time frame may be during free dining which will save you some money. Fast passes do not, at least at this time, cost anything.
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Old 10-11-2012, 09:11 PM   #4
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It looks like u are coming during a value off season time frame. Here is a site that will show you the price differences for resorts

http://www.mousesavers.com/2013-all-...s-season-dates

6 day tickets with a park hopper option will run you $987 without park hopper $816. These are no discount rates.

If you stay 6 days in say Pop Resort in a standard room it's $85.00 a night that's $510.00
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Old 10-12-2012, 01:21 AM   #5
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Go to the Walt Disney World website, scroll down to the bottom, and click on "Special Offers." That will allow you to price vacations with the newly released discounts.
Booking with or without a travel agent is your choice. You can get pretty much all the same deals by booking yourself.

These are just rough estimates:
Tickets = $1000 (you can get discounted tickets through Undercover Tourist, but then you wouldn't be able to purchase a dining plan)
Airfare = $900
Dining = $500ish (2 quick service meals a day - no table service)
Hotel = $375 (Value resort)
=$2675
That leaves you with $325ish for any table service (character meals etc) and souvenirs.

FastPass is free with admission. The instructions will be on the back of your park map, and they always have CMs around the kiosks to assist you.

The Unofficial Guide is an excellent resource, as is easywdw.com.
The best advice I can give you is to plan on arriving at the parks a bit before opening. You can get more done in the first few hours of the day than you can sometimes in the rest of the day combined.
Also, January can be sketchy weather-wise, so pack in layers.
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Old 10-12-2012, 08:22 AM   #6
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There is also an option to pay for ur WDW tickets and resort in payments. You put a payment down when u make ur reservation and can make payments thereafter on the WDW site. Your balance has to be paid 45 days before your 1st resort day.

Since you are planning on a Jan. trip I don't know how helpful this will be but I wanted u to know.
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Old 10-12-2012, 08:39 AM   #7
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I suggest you also buy a good guidebook. I like the Unofficial Guide to Walt Disney World. The 2013 edition is selling on Amazon for $11.47; well worth the price.
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Old 10-12-2012, 08:51 AM   #8
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It's certainly a possibility while the children are under 10 and you are going in the slower season. In addition to what others have said, check the airline sites for discounted packages as well. I know we booked a Southwest package a couple of years ago that had flight, hotel and park tickets for all 4 of us and we paid under $2300 and stayed at moderate(POFQ) for 6 nights/7days.

Get a tour book and run the numbers on the websites. Good Luck!
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Old 10-12-2012, 10:38 AM   #9
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I have a few suggestions:

Your daughter MAY get sick on a plane too. I do. Have dramamine for her, it is so worth it!!!

There is a Stay/Play/Dine special out now which isn't free food but saves a LOT of money on a room, ticket, and dining plan package. Get the whole package.

Book all of your sit down meals ASAP!!!

Use a travel agent who specializes in Disney. I am one, there are lots of us. There is no extra fee for our services AND you will have someone to answer all of your questions and walk you through the entire process step by step.

All of the Disney resorts are clean and fun, but they each have pros and cons. The more you pay for the room the closer you are to the theme parks. A travel agent can quote lots of different resorts for you and do a compare/contrast of them.
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Old 10-12-2012, 10:40 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jackster View Post
My husband, two kids (ages 5 and 8) and I are going to DW for the first time and we are SO VERY excited! Actually, we won't tell our kids until Christmas; they're gonna lose their minds!

We're planning to go the week of Jan. 28 and stay 5 or 6 days. I was told that it's usually not as crowded or hot around that time.

We're about 600 miles away from Florida -- plus my daughter gets crazy-car sick -- so we're definitely not driving. I'm hoping with airfare, park tickets and hotel, it'll cost around $3k. Is that realistic? Should I try to book the trip online or will I get a better deal through a travel agent?

We'll book a room at a moderate or value-priced resort on the premises to be able to access the shuttles. Are there any hotels that are better than others or are they all pretty decent? I definitely think we should also get the fast pass for rides and maybe the meal pass as well.

I'm sure this forum gets asked this question all the time, but I need some helpful hints. What other things should I keep in mind for this first trip? Is there a thread somewhere on this forum that will provide a wealth of information for the first-time Disney visitor? Help, please!!!

Thanks,

Jackie
Even at a slower time of year the popular dining places, like the character and princess meals, often book up totally six months in advance. My number one tip for you, if you are going to do this all on your own, is to make your dining ADR ASAP!!!
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Old 10-12-2012, 05:18 PM   #11
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I used a Disney travel agent for my 2007 trip. This would take some of the stress off of you. It doesn't cost u any extra and they know the ins and outs, tips, and automatically apply any discounts.

I'm sure Laceemouse can help you out through her travel agency or point you in the right direction.
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