How do you book your Disney trip?

Discussion in 'Theme Parks Attractions and Strategies' started by tlriv5, Jan 24, 2012.

  1. minnie mum

    minnie mum Unapologetic Disney Fan(atic)

    Mar 8, 2011
    This is a PIN code. It is a special discount that can only be used by the person it is addressed to. It can be for a room only discount or free dining or some other type of package discount and would be good for a specified number of dates. These codes are different than the special offers for the general public.

    When, how, and why you might get a pin code is a bit of a mystery. You need to be in their system already. Perhaps by requesting a pre-planning video or creating an online account or doing online checks for reservations. Or by having already done a Disney vacation. I've gotten quite a few pins in recent years by email. They show up at irregular intervals, each with different offers for different dates. It's unpredictable. Other people I know (also WDW frequent visitors) have NEVER gotten a pin. As I say, it's a mystery.
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  3. BuzzBelleMom

    BuzzBelleMom DIS Veteran

    Jul 13, 2006
    I am still peeved that DH got a PIN for free dining this year when I am the one who makes the plans and everything is listed under my name.

    And then, the PIN was for a time we could not go.:sad1:
  4. capegirl

    capegirl DIS Veteran

    Jan 1, 2003
    I always book directly, and I never get any package plans; I've saved a ton of $$ over the years. However it is a different story if you don't know the ropes, so I completely understand why people put their vacation arrangements in the hands of a trusted TA.
  5. jtowntoflorida

    jtowntoflorida Looking Like I Can't Really Afford To Go To Disney

    Jan 17, 2011
    I don't use a TA for any other traveling I do, I don't know why I'd do it for a Disney trip. Plus, we rent points and stay DVC, but even if we stayed in a regular room, I'd just book directly through Disney.
  6. cannmom

    cannmom Mouseketeer

    Mar 10, 2008
    Our first trip I booked on the phone directly with Disney. All others I have done online through the Disney website. It's really easy. I have never even considered using a travel agent.
  7. MinnieLovesMickey12

    MinnieLovesMickey12 DIS Veteran

    Dec 16, 2012
    Yes to every bit of this.

    Book it through Disney myself. Book my own airfare because Disney offered flights suck and cost twice as much.

    I would never use a travel agent to book a trip for me. I want to be in total control of my own reservation. And there is no question I need to ask a travel agent that I can't simply find the answer to it myself.

    There is nobody out there that can give you better prices than you can get for yourself through Disney. The only exception to that is if there is NO ROOM discount and NO free dining then booking through AAA can save you about 5 or 10%. I got a quote from AAA on a trip that I booked myself and the Disney package portion of the trip was $4500 and the AAA agent said she could book it for me for $4350.

    Then free dining came out and I called and had it added to my already booked package.

    I also don't need anybody to book my dinner reservations for me. I sometimes change my mind about times or want different places. I want to do all that myself.

    And as you probably already know, when you book through someone else you can't just call Disney and make any changes yourself. You have to go through the travel agent you booked through.
  8. troll buster

    troll buster Mouseketeer

    May 11, 2013
    I always book mine on-line through Disney.
  9. MartDM

    MartDM DIS Veteran

    Feb 21, 2000
    Since there is no real advantage to using a TA for our trips to the World, I book myself right on the WDW site. It's very easy and I've never had a problem with it.

    I do use Small World Vacations to book our cruises though, since they have always offered the largest onboard credit for the booking!
  10. momofboyz3

    momofboyz3 DIS Veteran

    Mar 18, 2013
    My 1st trip was last month. I ended up using a TA. She was very excited at first... And responded to my inquiry at 11pm!!! I thought this was someone who I want to help me. Low and behold after I gave my deposit it took her 4 or 5 days to return emails or calls. She gave me little info and did not make ADRs.
    When most people get Mickey mail a month out I got mine about 10 days out. I was nervous the whole time. Our next vacation I will book myself. :)
  11. Sleepy425

    Sleepy425 Mouseketeer

    Jan 11, 2011
    I decided to use a TA because she sponsors a friend of mine. Normally I do everything myself, but figured if I could throw her a commission what's the harm?

    Well I am finding out the harm - I booked my flights, and they ended up being for different dates than I anticipated. I told her this a month ago (May28), and it still comes up wrong on MDE and when I call Disney. But she claims it is right on her end. Yet she has never given me an updated price.

    And I gave her numbers for my gift cards on Sunday and they still haven't been applied to my account. I'm beyond frustrated.
  12. lustergirl

    lustergirl DIS Veteran

    Aug 25, 2005
    I book everything myself including airfare. We usually get a good deal through Southwest or JetBlue and it is nonstop :thumbsup2 If a pin comes or then I just call and have it added to my ressie.
  13. Mickeymagic123

    Mickeymagic123 Mouseketeer

    Jun 21, 2013
    I've booked our last two trips myself directly with Disney. I find the website convenient and easy to use. I do agree with some other posters that booking airfare separately can often result in a better deal. If I wasn't so impatient to get my next trip booked :), I could have saved about $200 by booking through Southwest. Lesson learned.
  14. CNYDisneyFan

    CNYDisneyFan DIS Veteran

    Jun 13, 2013
    Either online or through AAA.
  15. Seeker615

    Seeker615 Harry Potter Fanatic!

    Jan 6, 2009
    I do all my own travel planning.

    I got great flights with Delta and by using the Sky Miles credit card I got $50 off and first bags fly free!

    I tend to make changes along the way and it is much easier to just do them myself. If I have questions I call Disney directly.

    I tried agents in the past and always end up frustrated. The ones I had always tried to upsell me on things I don't need or want.
  16. prettypatchesmsu

    prettypatchesmsu DIS Veteran

    Jun 5, 2013
    This is the first time we are paying for it all ourselves and booking ourselves, but my family previously has used a TA who is supposed to be a Disney specialist or whatever. I was never impressed and think we could have done better ourselves.

    This time it's just DH and me and I booked our trip. Started out doing online, as I thought it would be easier etc, and I'm good with details and like controlling it myself and selecting each item. I got everything done all the way to the end and it kept having some type of error on the payment screen and kept saying try again later or call.

    So after an hour of that, I called. Wow, wish I'd started off that way. Had a great CM, it was really easy. She was able to do things that you could not select online yourself, such as put my room requests in and book my airline seats on the flight. I was impressed at how much the CM made sure I liked everything and answered all my questions. She even made sure we were in the front couple seats on the first plane as our connecting time is going to be somewhat tight in Atlanta.

  17. tndisneyfan

    tndisneyfan DIS Veteran

    Mar 8, 2005
    I always book it myself. Usually I call, I've had trouble getting my AP rate booking it on the internet. Plus I like talking to an actual person.
  18. Orreed

    Orreed Olivia

    Jul 2, 2012
    I typically book on Many times they have the same deal as Disney plus bundling the package with airfare saves money.
  19. jimjenkids

    jimjenkids Mouseketeer

    Feb 1, 2012
    that's funny, a few trips back, we got a PIN for over xmas...the PIN came to my parents house address but addressed to my son who at that time was 10! after our 3rd call down to Disney travel, we were able to finally add it to our package. we have gotten a few since then, but thought it was odd to have it come in his name(a child) and to the wrong address!.
    we will be looking into Middle of the Magic TA for a quote(have heard wonderful things about them) they always show little "welcome" packages that they drop off to their clients(when they check in). no extra charges-pay just like we do with Disney travel-they watch for any new discounts that may come up. I have always done it myself(a bit of a control freak) but thought that our next trip we might go this way. lot to celebrate this next trip-Dec 2014-bday, 20th anniversary, ds HS graduation.....
  20. jenji124

    jenji124 Earning My Ears

    Apr 17, 2006
    I have done it myself. I love planning it all and having control if I want to change something. I've booked online and on the phone.
  21. katt789

    katt789 DIS Veteran

    Mar 14, 2010
    I always have and probably always will book right through Disney. And I'll usually book online. Even though the website's been hectic recently.

    I'm a person who doesn't like booking through a third party (if that's the right terminology?) I've been traveling for years and just this year booked through Expedia for the first time. I'd always prefer to be dealing directly with the company I'm booking with incase something goes wrong, or I need to make changes, or a deal comes out, etc. :thumbsup2

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