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Old 11-03-2012, 07:45 PM   #31
kam1011
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I didn't look at his blog yet, but we went for Chrismas in 2009 and stayed at WL. First of all, WL is the absolute BEST resort for winter! Love the atmosphere! It was busy, but the cast members are prepared to deal with it. They actually stand in the middle of the sidewalks and make sure everyone stays to the right so that the sidewalks keep moving. Lines were moderate. Parks were open super late. We definitely didn't get there early (noon?) and no park ever closed down that we tried to go to. We usually vacation in the summer, so I don't feel the lines were longer than what we're used to. DH and I are both teachers and growing up my mom was a teacher, so we've always gone when school is out.

You have your cruise, you have your flight, go enjoy your stay in Disney.
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Old 11-03-2012, 07:47 PM   #32
kam1011
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Oh, and I think I saw one person in the pool. It was like 50 degrees out.
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1980s & 1990s:
Disney Inn (x2), Fort Wilderness Cabins (x2), Disney's Lake Buena Vista Villas (fav! x2), Caribbean Beach (x2), All Star Music, Wilderness Lodge (x2), Dixie Landings (x2)

2000s:
5 off-site trips
All Star Music Family Suites
Beach Club
Wilderness Lodge Villas (x2)
Old Key West (x2)
Saratoga Springs
AKL - Kidani Village
Bay Lake Tower

I may have missed some...


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Old 11-04-2012, 12:34 AM   #33
Sue M
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Quote:
Originally Posted by biggroofy View Post
Sue M, I was trying to book sleigh ride but have to move around our ADR first. Most are fully booked except 8:00pm.

Mini-golf, do I have to book ahead of time?

If weather permits, would like to do sea-racer (?) with DD9 too
No you don't have to book the mini golf ahead. One of these days I'm going to try the mini golf! Maybe this January I'll get around to it!
We love renting the SeaRaycers. Talk to the marina staff about the islands out in front of WL. One used to be a water park, and one was an animal park before AK was built. It's fun going around Bay Lake and 7 Seas Lagoon. Lots to explore. We also enjoyed the Nature Trail to FW. Very pretty, and you may come across deer, or armadillos!
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Old 11-04-2012, 09:18 AM   #34
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I would only go if you could go with the mindset of not doing much ride/attraction wise and being there mainly to enjoy the decorations. We were at Disney over Easter week this past year and thought it was NOT BAD AT ALL. I would easily go back during that week. We have been over Thanksgiving 4 times and as the holiday got closer, the crowds were huge. I can only imagine how bad it would be the week between Christmas and New Year's. If you are a frequent visitor of Disney then keep your plans, you can always do the rides another trip, just focus on the holiday decorations and off the beaten path stuff. If you don't go often, I would save my money and go at some other time of year.
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Old 11-04-2012, 02:29 PM   #35
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Quote:
Originally Posted by biggroofy View Post
@DznyCrzy11: I don't have any existing park tickets, I am buying the Magic Your Way Pkg so tickets will expire 14 days after first use. It seems to be very expensive to add the "No expiration" option to the tickets.
Normal magic your way tickets don't have an expiration date until you start to use them. That's what the poster was trying to ask; if the tickets you have have an expiration date on them. Since you're getting normal tickets, they won't expire until you start using them (14 days after first use). So you wouldn't have to add no expiration, even if you had those tickets in hand. And since you don't have tickets in hand, it doesn't apply anyway, since you would just cancel what you've booked and book again for March.


Quote:
Originally Posted by DeluxePrincess View Post
The blogger who did that video seemed to be arriving at the park at 10:30 am. On some days during this week, MK may be opening at 7:00am. You could have ridden all your faves and more in that 3 and a half hours! During a crowded period, nothing beats getting there AT rope drop. I sacrifice some early morning sleep to eliminate possible stress later in the day.
I agree. Except you want to get there *before* rope drop.

Quote:
Originally Posted by kam1011 View Post
Oh, and I think I saw one person in the pool. It was like 50 degrees out.
FWIW Dec '09 and '10 had seriously low temperatures, and from what I read those lows were not normal. It could still happen again, of course, but you just have to pay attention to the weather forecasts just before you leave, and pack for unexpected swings. Layers are good; if I go again in December (we were there in '10) I'll bring long underwear for each of us, so we can be far warmer than we were. (we had a 2 week trip planned, the first few days were perfectly fine, then the temperatures plummeted and we weren't prepared from the forecast for it)



OP, just remember that everyone there is there for just about the same reason you are; they had the time off, they wanted to be there around the holidays, and they want to have fun. I don't love being at a theme park when it's crowded, but if you know what it's going to be like you can mentally prepare, and make sure that you know to get there EARLY, eat at off times, etc.


LIke a previous poster said, the blogger lives nearby and doesn't *have to* be there during that time. Their outlook is going to be a million times different than the casual visitor from afar. It's like trusting a Floridian to tell you if it's cold (or a Southern Californian)...their experience is just so drastically different than someone else's, you *have to* consider the source. My Floridian cousin was wearing a costume involving polyester from head to toe, and he didn't start sweating until HOURS later; meanwhile, my son, wearing cotton, was sweating from the moment he put his costume on. Even my point of view, where I've been to Disneyland many times and our mere two visits to WDW involved about 20 total days at the parks, is going to be different from a first-timers. So always pay attention to the source.
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Old 11-04-2012, 04:13 PM   #36
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Wow about that blog! I haven't been during Christmas but since I live here now I do frequent the parks a lot during all types of crowd levels. I think the Wilderness Lodge will be a great place to stay - the resorts should be just fine and there will be lots of Christmas decorations at the resorts which will be lovely! I also think resort transportation will be fine (Disney is really prepared for the holiday crowds and usually have extra buses and what not running). From AKL you should be able to get a bus to the MK and then the boat back to WL.

As far as the parks go - I think it will be nuts - so my recommendation is to go as early as possible - get everything done you can and then leave - relax at the resort/s. It will still be a magical holiday but do keep in mind that you may not be able to do everything you want to do at the parks. I have on occasion been at MK before rope drop and did everything I wanted to do before 11:00am and it started getting "zoo"y. Good Luck!
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Old 11-04-2012, 07:43 PM   #37
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I'd say go for it with reasonable expectations, a plan in place, and being willing to change your plans if a park is too crowded or you find you are not having fun. With your comment about going other places in Orlando, they'll be just as crowded. We've been to WDW 4th of July and NYE, as well as other times, but never WDW for Xmas. We have, however, been at Universal from Xmas through NYE. THAT was crazy busy, but once we employed techniques we learned from doing WDW, it became manageable.

Before kids, we used to go in the off season and there were times even then that the parks would be unexpectedly crowded to the point of being closed to some guests. Maybe for special events, or maybe because they just had a lot of guests showing up that day. Actually, if it's going to be crowded, I think I'd rather be around other guests who have chosen to attend at a busy time....rather than in the off season when people are freaking out because the crowd experience is more than what they expected.

Stick with your original plans. I don't think it's worth the cost to switch to another time that might be slightly less crowded. Besides, we'll be down there the same time as you. Our goal is simply to enjoy the holidays being a family together in one of the best holiday-themed locations in the world!
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Old 11-05-2012, 01:10 AM   #38
JeanfromBNA
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Quote:
Originally Posted by biggroofy View Post
I had a talk with DD9 this morning. She has some "minimum" requests:
"Dad, I want to go on some rides which I was not allowed during our last visit, i.e., when I was 7. Can I get on Splash Mountain and Space Mountain? If we have time I want to do Tomorrowland® Speedway and Buzz Lightyear's Space Ranger Spin® again..."

DD5, I bet visiting Fantasyland + Dumbo + It's a small World, if possible, meet & greet with Rapunzel would be good enough for her.

But the thing is ...if we spend 3-4 hours in MK each day (on Dec 22 and Dec 23) will we be able to accomplish the tasks? Mission Impossible?

DD9 wanted to do Soaring in Epcot and Toy Story Mania in DHS which DW already banned. She said "It is tough even if you get into the park at 9am and issued a Fastpass at 6:30pm"

Maybe I should mention WHY I picked to visit AK on Dec 24. I had the impression that AK is the LEAST popular theme park. Also pocahontas is DD5's favourite princess and she is not available on Disney cruise
All of your requests are doable, including TSM. You need a touring plan from one of the websites that specializes in Disney. I like touringplansdotcom, but there are others.

I would recommend ADRs for every day you're there. I've seen people frustrated after being turned away from a table service restaurant because they're booked at slow times. Some restaurants are just popular, and that's one less thing to worry about.

There are a couple of good mobile apps for in-park conditions. Use them and your phone to communicate with the Gparents.

Really, all that you need are reasonable expectations, a good attitude, and a plan. Have a happy Christmas@WDW!
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Old 11-05-2012, 02:46 AM   #39
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I have been during the week between Christmas and New Year's and while I doubt I'll ever go out of my way to go during that week again, if I had the opportunity to spend a few extra days at Disney I would absolutely take it.

I would NEVER recommend that someone who has never been plan a trip over that week, but since you've gone before, and have low expectations, I think you'll do fine.

DEFINITELY get to the parks as early as possible.
Make good use of Fast Pass.
Enjoy the atmosphere (they do fake snow and hot chocolate & cookies on main street after dark).
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Old 11-05-2012, 03:29 PM   #40
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Thanks. We will be going as planned, also will try to be there before rope drop.

However, I don't know what to do on Dec 22 (Sat), the morning we will get off the Disney Fantasy ship at Cape Canaveral. We won't arrive WL until 10:30am (earliest) and after check-in and dropping off the luggages, it will be 11am~ish, which might be the most crowded time to get into MK. As of now I have 1:00pm ADR at CP in MK, but wonder if it will be doable. IF, we can get on 1 or 2 rides (even like it's a small world) and watch the 3pm parade, we would be happy to leave MK around 3:30pm and hopefully our rooms will be ready by then.
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