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Old 07-14-2013, 06:31 PM   #46
RinkyTinkyTinky
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Originally Posted by Mndisneygirl View Post
Way to look on the positive side Rinky! We are heading on this big Alaska trip and have decided we have to reign it in for a while after that. We will book onboard a dummy cruise, with the intention of going in 2015 somewhere. It's going to be tough to stay home next winter, but we might be able to do something cheaper than Disney and still get out of the cold.

5 weeks!! I can't wait to hear how you guys like the beach Shelly! Maybe that's what we'll do in March. Hmmm....Dave's sister has a condo at Cocoa Beach.
If only there was a travel tree we could pluck bills from!

Alaska sounds WONDERFUL! We would love to do that cruise. The airfare would almost cost us as much as the cruise though and I think that's nuts! You are a lot closer to that port than we are, so it's probably much cheaper for you. Port Canaveral is really the only port that is reasonably priced for us to travel to. I hope you guys have an awesome time though. I know it will be so beautiful!
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Old 07-14-2013, 07:04 PM   #47
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I'm following! I've been to Clearwater and absolutely LOVED it. We stayed at an unusually great Best Western waterfront in Dunedin and made the 5-10 minute drive to Clearwater every day. Although my family and I agreed that if we ever go back we would stay in a hotel in actual Clearwater, that Best Western was cheap (we were down for a wedding which was held just down the street so the whole family was here), the rooms were fantastic and the very was even better.
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Old 07-14-2013, 08:32 PM   #48
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Originally Posted by RinkyTinkyTinky View Post
If only there was a travel tree we could pluck bills from!

Alaska sounds WONDERFUL! We would love to do that cruise. The airfare would almost cost us as much as the cruise though and I think that's nuts! You are a lot closer to that port than we are, so it's probably much cheaper for you. Port Canaveral is really the only port that is reasonably priced for us to travel to. I hope you guys have an awesome time though. I know it will be so beautiful!
I know!
We're very excited to go - it's a road trip so we will be spending a couple days driving out there and then on the way back we'll stop at a couple places - spend a day in Seattle and a couple days at Mount Rushmore. My brother and my BFF are joining us and are flying and holy cats it's $$$!! They can manage that much better than our family of 4. The airfare would be about as much as the cruise fare! So it goes along with our plan to have them set foot in all 50 states, so we road trip.

I'm sure I'll do a TR and at least post pics. I'll keep you posted!
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Old 07-15-2013, 10:53 AM   #49
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Shelly Happy 5 weeks to the Beach Day!
Thanks Sheila!!

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Originally Posted by RinkyTinkyTinky View Post
Thanks Sheila and Shelly! It does stink, but that's life. This economy continues to suck! But we're not broke or anything like that. We could take some money from savings and still go, but we are just afraid to do that with the economy like it is. We just don't have that sense of job security anymore that we've always had before. But that's ok because by the time we go back next year, I will have two years worth of points on my Disney Visa card! That's going to put a serious dent in what the next trip costs us!
It does stink. But yeah, think of the Disney reward dollars!!!

Maybe you should try to go at the end of next August -- I hear there are going to be some great specials!!


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Originally Posted by Mndisneygirl View Post

5 weeks!! I can't wait to hear how you guys like the beach Shelly! Maybe that's what we'll do in March. Hmmm....Dave's sister has a condo at Cocoa Beach.

Cocoa Beach sounds like a good idea for March!! It might be hard to be that close to WDW though and not go.
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Old 07-15-2013, 10:58 AM   #50
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Originally Posted by RinkyTinkyTinky View Post
If only there was a travel tree we could pluck bills from!


Yeah, wouldn't that be nice?!!


Alaska sounds WONDERFUL! We would love to do that cruise. The airfare would almost cost us as much as the cruise though and I think that's nuts! You are a lot closer to that port than we are, so it's probably much cheaper for you. Port Canaveral is really the only port that is reasonably priced for us to travel to. I hope you guys have an awesome time though. I know it will be so beautiful!

That's how I feel about Hawaii. We would love to go, but the airfare alone would cost as much as the rest of the trip.

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Originally Posted by katiee37 View Post
I'm following! I've been to Clearwater and absolutely LOVED it. We stayed at an unusually great Best Western waterfront in Dunedin and made the 5-10 minute drive to Clearwater every day. Although my family and I agreed that if we ever go back we would stay in a hotel in actual Clearwater, that Best Western was cheap (we were down for a wedding which was held just down the street so the whole family was here), the rooms were fantastic and the very was even better.
Welcome Katie! Glad to hear you loved Clearwater so much!! I'm very excited to get there. I figured we won't get back anytime soon, so that's why I decided to go ahead and get a hotel right on Clearwater Beach. I hope it's worth it!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mndisneygirl View Post
I know!
We're very excited to go - it's a road trip so we will be spending a couple days driving out there and then on the way back we'll stop at a couple places - spend a day in Seattle and a couple days at Mount Rushmore. My brother and my BFF are joining us and are flying and holy cats it's $$$!! They can manage that much better than our family of 4. The airfare would be about as much as the cruise fare! So it goes along with our plan to have them set foot in all 50 states, so we road trip.

I'm sure I'll do a TR and at least post pics. I'll keep you posted!

Your family is such awesome road tripers!! I don't think we could do it. We drive to Charlotte, about 8 hours, and that's about all we can take!
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Old 07-15-2013, 11:07 AM   #51
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Again, if you read my last TR or looked at my tickers you probably already know when we are going!

Originally we were going the very last week of August and staying until the day before Labor Day. Just like we did in August 2011. But, unfortunately we had to move the trip up a week earlier.

We are lucky in that we don't start school until after Labor Day. Leaving us that last week of August to travel, when almost everyone else is back in school. But that means that our Open Houses and/or orientations at school are that last week of August. Which normally isn't a big deal to miss, but with DS14 entering HS he really didn't want to miss his orientation. DS11 will be entering MS, but he didn't care as much! At first we were just going to go ahead and go as planned, but then at a parent meeting I learned that they are actually doing a half day walk-thru type orientation for the incoming Freshmen, sometime mid-week that last week of the month. So since it was a little bit bigger of a deal and DS was sort of stressing about missing, we went ahead and changed everything! Luckily this was before I had booked the YC with the travel agency and the beach resort.

These new dates actually worked out great when I went to book airfare! I got flights into Tampa for $94 and flights back home from Orlando for $99. So round trip for all of us for about $772! Not bad!

Then I started looking into rental cars. We've only ever done a rental car for one day down there, to drive to LegoLand in May 2012. We were staying at the BC that trip and rented from the Dolphin and it worked out great. And only about $50 for the day! So with this trip I had budgeted about $150 for a rental car for 2 days. Just a guess. Then I started pricing it out. Boy was I wrong!! It was coming up more like $400. I was freaking out!! I was pricing out picking the car up at Tampa and returning it to the Dolphin two days later. Well I could see that the huge price difference was stemming from picking up and dropping off at 2 different locations. But I really didn't have much choice.

So I waited it out, checking prices from time to time. They fluctuated a little, but were still crazy!! Then I started trying different options with different companies and different drop off locations. Still all very high, but it seemed to be coming up a little less to drop off at a hotel in DTD, rather than the Dolphin. Which was an option, just not the most convenient one. Eventually I went ahead and booked it that way – picking up in Tampa and dropping off near DTD, for $175. I was pleased with that price considering for awhile I thought I was going to have to pay $400. I kept checking back from time to time pricing out to drop off at the Dolphin, and eventually that paid off!! In about the middle of June I priced it out and the prices were much lower to drop off at the Dolphin. Comparable to what I was paying to drop off near DTD. And to my surprise there was a SUV for even less! Much less!! $82 for two days!! I quickly grabbed that special and booked it!


So, we are all set!! I am a little worried about going a week earlier. We really had the best time when we went the last week of August 2011. The parks were emptier than we had ever seen them. Almost everything was walk-ons! I'm hopeful this time will be similar, but the crowd level predictions are higher, so I'm a little worried. Hopefully a lot of the south will head back to school that week and it will be okay!



Up Next: Park Plans



Last edited by Momof2Disneyboys; 07-18-2013 at 01:03 PM.
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Old 07-15-2013, 12:34 PM   #52
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These Southerners and all the other Southerners we know will definitely be back in school by then. I think you'll be ok!

Good job on the rental deal! Persistence pays off... literally!
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Old 07-15-2013, 01:06 PM   #53
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I'm with Rinky...all of the Southern schools will have started back up by the time you go. I just glanced at our 2013-2014 calendar and we start on August 14th.

Your persistence in stalking the rental cars really paid off. $400 to $82! That's a big price difference.
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Old 07-15-2013, 01:44 PM   #54
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Momof2Disneyboys View Post
Again, if you read my last TR or looked at my tickers you probably already know when we are going!

Originally we were going the very last week of August and staying until the day before Labor Day. Just like we did in August 2011. But, unfortunately we had to move the trip up a week earlier.

We are lucky in that we don't start school until after Labor Day. Leaving us that last week of August to travel, when almost everyone else is back in school. But that means that our Open Houses and/or orientations at school are that last week of August. Which normally isn't a big deal to miss, but with DS14 entering HS he really didn't want to miss his orientation. DS11 will be entering MS, but he didn't care as much! At first we were just going to go ahead and go as planned, but then at a parent meeting I learned that they are actually doing a half day walk-thru type orientation for the incoming Freshmen, sometime mid-week that last week of the month. So since it was a little bit bigger of a deal and DS was sort of stressing about missing, we went ahead and changed everything! Luckily this was before I had booked the YC with the travel agency and the beach resort.

These new dates actually worked out great when I went to book airfare! I got flights into Tampa for $94 and flights back home from Orlando for $99. So round trip for all of us for about $772! Not bad!

Then I started looking into rental cars. We've only ever done a rental car for one day down there, to drive to LegoLand in May 2012. We were staying at the BC that trip and rented from the Dolphin and it worked out great. And only about $50 for the day! So with this trip I had budgeted about $150 for a rental car for 2 days. Just a guess. Then I started pricing it out. Boy was I wrong!! It was coming up more like $400. I was freaking out!! I was pricing out picking the car up at Tampa and returning it to the Dolphin two days later. Well I could see that the huge price difference was stemming from picking up and dropping off at 2 different locations. But I really didn't have much choice.

So I waited it out, checking prices from time to time. They fluctuated a little, but were still crazy!! Then I started trying different options with different companies and different drop off locations. Still all very high, but it seemed to be coming up a little less to drop off at a hotel in DTD, rather than the Dolphin. Which was an option, just not the most convenient one. Eventually I went ahead and booked it that way – picking up in Tampa and dropping off near DTD, for $175. I was pleased with that price considering for awhile I thought I was going to have to pay $400. I kept checking back from time to time pricing out to drop off at the Dolphin, and eventually that paid off!! In about the middle of June I priced it out and the prices were much lower to drop off at the Dolphin. Comparable to what I was paying to drop off near DTD. And to my surprise there was a SUV for even less! Much less!! $82 for two days!! I quickly grabbed that special and booked it!


So, we are all set!! I am a little worried about going a week earlier. We really had the best time when we went the last week of August 2011. The parks were emptier than we had ever seen them. Almost everything was walk-ons! I'm hopeful this time will be similar, but the crowd level predictions are higher, so I'm a little worried. Hopefully a lot of the south will head back to school that week and it will be okay!



Up Next: Park Plans


Wow! Great deals on airfare and especially the rental car!

I don't know if I have lost my touch or something, but I have been striking out looking for deals lately. How often do you look?

I really need to get something booked. I am starting to get depressed about having nothing to look forward to. We haven't had anything planned since Alaska, and it's freaking me out.
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Old 07-15-2013, 02:31 PM   #55
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Originally Posted by RinkyTinkyTinky View Post
These Southerners and all the other Southerners we know will definitely be back in school by then. I think you'll be ok!

Good job on the rental deal! Persistence pays off... literally!
I hope so!!

Thanks, I was really surprised by the rental car deal I got!!


Quote:
Originally Posted by mickeystoontown View Post
I'm with Rinky...all of the Southern schools will have started back up by the time you go. I just glanced at our 2013-2014 calendar and we start on August 14th.

Your persistence in stalking the rental cars really paid off. $400 to $82! That's a big price difference.
Good to know!!

I know, that is a huge difference. If it had stayed closer to the $400 I was going to cancel the beach portion of the trip.


Quote:
Originally Posted by rusafee1183 View Post
Wow! Great deals on airfare and especially the rental car!

I don't know if I have lost my touch or something, but I have been striking out looking for deals lately. How often do you look?

I really need to get something booked. I am starting to get depressed about having nothing to look forward to. We haven't had anything planned since Alaska, and it's freaking me out.

I got my airfare the day it came out. And it's only gone up since then. So I'm glad I didn't wait on that. The rental car -- I'm certainly no expert on that. This is only my second time booking one. Jodi kept telling me (as I was freaking out ) that the car rentals are opposite the airfare and that they go down closer to the date. But for awhile there I think we were both worried and thinking that mine wasn't going to come down, because of the pick up and drop off location being different. But eventually they did start to come down. And then I think I just got lucky because it was only the SUV's that were at that awesome price. Maybe they just happened to need to get some moved out of Tampa. IDK. But I'll take it!!

I hope you get something booked soon.

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Old 07-15-2013, 03:09 PM   #56
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We've been the third week in August a few times and I don't think you'll notice much of a difference! I think in 2011 we just missed each other at the Poly.

It was great! We had lots of walk ons and didn't need FP as often.

Wow great deals on flights and the car. Was it a LOT cheaper to fly into Tampa?

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Old 07-15-2013, 03:14 PM   #57
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We've been the third week in August a few times and I don't think you'll notice much of a difference! I think in 2011 we just missed each other at the Poly.

It was great! We had lots of walk ons and didn't need FP as often.

Wow great deals on flights and the car. Was it a LOT cheaper to fly into Tampa?

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Good to hear, thanks!

Not a lot. It was $94 per person to fly into Tampa that day. It would have been $99 to fly into Orlando. Tampa is just much closer to Clearwater!!
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Old 07-15-2013, 03:29 PM   #58
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Momof2Disneyboys View Post
Again, if you read my last TR or looked at my tickers you probably already know when we are going!

Originally we were going the very last week of August and staying until the day before Labor Day. Just like we did in August 2011. But, unfortunately we had to move the trip up a week earlier.

We are lucky in that we don't start school until after Labor Day. Leaving us that last week of August to travel, when almost everyone else is back in school. But that means that our Open Houses and/or orientations at school are that last week of August. Which normally isn't a big deal to miss, but with DS14 entering HS he really didn't want to miss his orientation. DS11 will be entering MS, but he didn't care as much! At first we were just going to go ahead and go as planned, but then at a parent meeting I learned that they are actually doing a half day walk-thru type orientation for the incoming Freshmen, sometime mid-week that last week of the month. So since it was a little bit bigger of a deal and DS was sort of stressing about missing, we went ahead and changed everything! Luckily this was before I had booked the YC with the travel agency and the beach resort.

These new dates actually worked out great when I went to book airfare! I got flights into Tampa for $94 and flights back home from Orlando for $99. So round trip for all of us for about $772! Not bad!

Then I started looking into rental cars. We've only ever done a rental car for one day down there, to drive to LegoLand in May 2012. We were staying at the BC that trip and rented from the Dolphin and it worked out great. And only about $50 for the day! So with this trip I had budgeted about $150 for a rental car for 2 days. Just a guess. Then I started pricing it out. Boy was I wrong!! It was coming up more like $400. I was freaking out!! I was pricing out picking the car up at Tampa and returning it to the Dolphin two days later. Well I could see that the huge price difference was stemming from picking up and dropping off at 2 different locations. But I really didn't have much choice.

So I waited it out, checking prices from time to time. They fluctuated a little, but were still crazy!! Then I started trying different options with different companies and different drop off locations. Still all very high, but it seemed to be coming up a little less to drop off at a hotel in DTD, rather than the Dolphin. Which was an option, just not the most convenient one. Eventually I went ahead and booked it that way – picking up in Tampa and dropping off near DTD, for $175. I was pleased with that price considering for awhile I thought I was going to have to pay $400. I kept checking back from time to time pricing out to drop off at the Dolphin, and eventually that paid off!! In about the middle of June I priced it out and the prices were much lower to drop off at the Dolphin. Comparable to what I was paying to drop off near DTD. And to my surprise there was a SUV for even less! Much less!! $82 for two days!! I quickly grabbed that special and booked it!


So, we are all set!! I am a little worried about going a week earlier. We really had the best time when we went the last week of August 2011. The parks were emptier than we had ever seen them. Almost everything was walk-ons! I'm hopeful this time will be similar, but the crowd level predictions are higher, so I'm a little worried. Hopefully a lot of the south will head back to school that week and it will be okay!



Up Next: Park Plans


Wow Great deals on both your Air and rental car! I paid $770 for air for just 2 of us but our return flight has been bouncing up an down so I have been able to bank $142 in credits towards another trip so it's all good, final cost for air $628 more than we have ever paid but What can ya do

It seems like renting a car is a lot like booking airfare you have to keep checking for deals
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Old 07-15-2013, 04:15 PM   #59
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Good to hear, thanks!

Not a lot. It was $94 per person to fly into Tampa that day. It would have been $99 to fly into Orlando. Tampa is just much closer to Clearwater!!
Oh that's right you're going to Clearwater first... Duh!!!

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Old 07-15-2013, 05:08 PM   #60
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Hello from wherever the heck I am!!

You got AWESOME deals on both the flight and rental car!! I'm still waiting for the car to come down for me. It hasn't budged yet. I'm hopeful that it comes down a ton bc I just spent $823 on the car in San Francisco.

Yes I almost died. Where is that vomit smilie when you need one???

Anyway--- I still have so much to catch up on here on the DIS but wanted to stop in and say hi before I'm on the move again.
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