Pre-Trip Report: Possibly Our Last Disney Trip As We Know It!

Discussion in 'UK Trip Reports Board' started by MrRomance, Oct 19, 2013.

  1. MrRomance

    MrRomance Planning and Plotting

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    Possibly The Final Disney Vacation...EVER...

    Yeah, right...

    It's not quite as bad as it sounds!

    The Cast

    Me
    Mrs. R
    Little Miss R aka Goonie aka Doodlebug

    [​IMG]

    Opening Night

    28th October 2013 For 15 Days Only!


    Where

    Disney's Saratoga Springs Resort & Spa

    [​IMG]


    The Details

    1 Night Stay at Premier Inn Gatwick (28th)
    Premium Economy Flights Direct With BA From LGW to MCO (29th)
    Returning (13th)
    Free Disney Dining Plan
    Free $200 Gift Card
    Booked in June 2012 (Yes, it's been a LONG TIME coming!)

    Extras

    Pre-purchased Photopass +
    Magic Bands :cool1:
    Tickets For MNSSHP (1st) and MVMCP (11th)
    Car Hire with Avis

    This MAY be the last time that we go to WDW as holidaymakers because we plan to move to Florida in 2014. We do have a trip booked in 2014 (just in case!) but it is highly likely that our future visits will be as Florida residents ::yes::

    Planning started for this trip a long time ago, but we wanted to do a lot of things we haven't done before. Not everything we planned (for example not booking so many ADRs) has come to be, but we certainly have a fun-filled trip planned including some house hunting, trick or treating and meeting some new friends!

    I don't think that I have ever been as excited as I am for this trip. It is the first time we have been to WDW without any gatecrashers! :rotfl2: Usually, we book a trip and one or both of our parents decide to tag along. We love to see them and make memories with them, but it always ends in arguments, it always ends up being a drama trying to keep everyone happy and it always ends with me and Mrs. R becoming an unpaid taxi service. This trip will be different!

    We found out that we're getting Magic Bands as part of the latest test. It feels really strange picking attractions before we leave, but we're hopeful that it'll make the trip go a lot more smoothly!

    ADRs Booked

    Crystal Palace Breakfast & Dinner
    Ohana Breakfast & Dinner
    Cinderella's Royal Table
    Hollywood & Vine Fantasmic! Dinner Package
    Be Our Guest Lunch & Dinner
    Trails End Dinner
    Tusker House Breakfast
    Yachtsman Steakhouse Dinner

    So, that's about it right now, we are 9 days out and everything is all set. Just some packing and house cleaning to do and we're ready for the off!
    I'm hoping to do a live TR, but you all know how it is when you're where the mouse is... things get in the way!
     
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  3. BettyBoo29

    BettyBoo29 Mouseketeer

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    Wow sounds like an amazing start to planning, we have our FIRST EVER Florida trip booked for September 2014 so that also is a long time coming. As I'm a newbie to this I have no idea where to start planning and its a little scary.

    How do you do ADRs? Looking forward to seeing what you do and what restaurants you recommend.

    All the best.
    Beth

    Sent from my iPhone using DISBoards
     
  4. MrRomance

    MrRomance Planning and Plotting

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    :wave: Hi Beth!!

    Planning your first trip can sometimes feel a little daunting, but it's not as bad as you think and there are so many lovely helpful people here on the DISboards that will offer you plenty of good advice!

    This will be my 17th (I think!!) trip and it never stops being exciting and there is always something new to learn.

    There are a few ways to book ADRs but they do not open until 180 days out. So about 6 months from the date you want. Wit the change over to MyMagic + the easiest way will be to sign up for My Disney Experience (MDE) and link your reservation. When 180 days rolls around, you can just do it through the App or the website. You can also call reservations calling (407) WDW-DINE or (407) 939-3463 - you'll need to dial 001 before the number for the country code.

    It really depends on your party as to what restaurants I could recommend. Some restaurants are great for couples only, other restaurants are great for kids (like the character meals and stuff) If I can be of any help, please feel free to send me a PM and I'll do my best to help with any questions you have. Don't be scared by it all, be excited! Part of the fun of a Disney holiday is all the planning :thumbsup2
     
  5. wilma-bride

    wilma-bride <<This space intentionally blank>> Moderator

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    Wow, sounds like an exciting trip. Good luck with all your plans, hope you have a great time :thumbsup2
     
  6. Wills Mom

    Wills Mom DIS Veteran

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    Sounds like an excellent trip and not long left to go!! Following along :)
     
  7. MrRomance

    MrRomance Planning and Plotting

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    Thank you! It should be a busy but incredible trip!

    Few updates more just for amusement than anything else.

    This morning I get a "pre-flight email" from British Airways. It was full of completely useless information which doesn't even apply to us! :rolleyes1 The email gave me lots of information about how to "save money" with airport parking and the like, but then went on to tell me to take advantage of my full baggage allowance of 2 pieces of hand luggage and 1 case for the hold... We are flying premium economy which means we have 2 cases and the email even bore the reservation number so you would think they would know that!? :sad2:

    Reading around it seems that the parks are busier than usual and that if you don't have FP+. I'm happier than ever that we're in the "test" now! :banana:

    I feel like I have too much to do and not enough time to do it which is the usual pre-trip feeling. Today, I went to Pets at Home to get all the pets supplies for our pet sitter...£110 :scared1: I always get worried that something will run out so I buy more than I need. This evening it's time for pre-trip hair cuts... I usually shave my head every few weeks at home but because I knew I'd get a hair cut before the trip, I have left it longer than usual. I can't make up my mind if I look like homeless or whether I have unruly shrubbery growing from my noggin'. :rotfl2:

    2 cases are now packed, 2 more and the cabin cases to go! :woohoo:
     
  8. wiigirl

    wiigirl DIS Veteran

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    Following along! :)
     
  9. BudgieMama

    BudgieMama DIS Veteran

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    Another follower... Looking forward to hearing all about your trip (and especially picking up any tips about SSR!) :-)
     
  10. MrRomance

    MrRomance Planning and Plotting

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    SSR is beautiful! We were there last year for our Wedding Vow Renewal! If you have any questions, I'll be happy to help!

    :wave2: thanks for following along!!!

    Today we had the pre-trip haircuts. Wild, crazy bush man hair is gone and I now resemble a human being again. Also got some packing done...

    [​IMG] :woohoo:
     
  11. BudgieMama

    BudgieMama DIS Veteran

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    Thank you. If I think of any, I'll ask you :-)

    PS- I love your suitcases! So cute!
     
  12. BudgieMama

    BudgieMama DIS Veteran

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    I thought of a question... I know the rooms at SSR are listed as having a coffee maker, but is it the kind I might just be able to coax hot water out of to make tea, or should I not even bother packing my teabags? :)
     
  13. MrRomance

    MrRomance Planning and Plotting

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    None of us are tea or coffee drinks but if I remember correctly the coffee maker in our room was the one with the filter, so yes, you could use them to just make hot water.

    The suitcases were a bargain buy! The Disney Store had them on sale at 70% off and I also get 10% discount for being a share holder.
     
  14. MrRomance

    MrRomance Planning and Plotting

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    One of the best days we have in Florida last year was our day at Discovery Cove.

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    We enjoyed our swim with Thelma, but that wasn't what made it special for us. What makes Discovery so special is that it is a day of pure relaxation. We swam with the Rays, we fed the exotic birds and we met the cutest little critter called a Kinkajoo. I purchased the Elite package last year which included having a private cabana with a well stocked fridge and snacks, chocolates, champagne and the animal encounter. It was perfect!

    [​IMG]

    This year we decided not to do the dolphin swim again, but we wanted the private cabana. When you book the Elite package you can book it whenever, but just a cabana you have to book it 3 weeks out. So today, we finally got it booked! $190 well spent in my opinion!!!

    For anyone who has never been to Discovery Cove or believes that it is way too expensive (and I admit it isn't cheap by any stretch) it is SO worth every cent you pay. If you can stretch to it, you won't regret it for a second. The food is good and plentiful all day long, the staff are wonderful, the animal interactions are awesome and hey, if you don't like any of that, it's all day beer, wine and snacks! :rotfl2:

    We are so excited to be going back and we're looking forward to another blissful day. :cool1:
     
  15. Chilly

    Chilly RIP Tag Fairy

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    Have a wonderful trip
     
  16. MrRomance

    MrRomance Planning and Plotting

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    Thanks, Claire!!

    I feel really stressed and unprepared for the trip for some weird reason. Usually, I'm just excited and ready to go, but I feel a bit edgy this time. I'm definitely happy that we don't fly tomorrow though with all this storm craziness!

    Probably sneak in one more update before take off... :thumbsup2
     
  17. Tony Bush

    Tony Bush DIS Veteran

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    Have a great holiday, hopefully the storm will pass through tomorrow and you'll be ok Tuesday.

    Look forward to some updates on SSR as we're there next year.
    Tony
     
  18. PJB71

    PJB71 DIS Veteran

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    Hope the storm dosn't effect your departure & look forward to your updates :thumbsup2
     
  19. MrRomance

    MrRomance Planning and Plotting

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    Woke up at 6.30am to howling wind and rain, looked out of the window to see an old guy on a bicycle being blown down the street at the same speed as the cars! Spent the day finishing up the cleaning in the house, packing and preparing everything for the pet sitter then loaded the cases into the car at 3pm.

    We decided to leave a little early in case the M25 was still insane but it was a pretty uneventful journey. Called the Meet & Greet Parking 15 minutes from the airport and he was waiting for us when we got there. Quick look over the car and he was off!

    Bag drop with BA wasn't as smooth as I'd hoped. (Why are BA staff so straight laced...how about lighten up already!?) I checked in online earlier this morning (scored the bulkhead seats...RESULT! :cool1:) I guess DW having a US passport and Goonie and I have UK passports sent their self-serve machine into a tailspin so we ended up having to deal with Little Miss Ray of Sunshine to get our bag labels. It was resolved relatively quickly and then it was off to The Premier Inn.

    I have to say that this place is great for the price. Naturally, it's not the lap of luxury, but for £104 (£96 after Quidco cashback) we got the room, dinner and breakfast. I did pay for WiFi which at £3 for 24 hours is pretty reasonable compared to other places I've stayed but when we tried it, it didn't work. Spoke to the staff and they immediately refunded it saying they had been having problems since the storm.

    [​IMG]

    Even though they refunded it they said if it comes back on, I could still use the code I got at check and low and behold half an hour later... here I am Interneting to my hearts content for free! :thumbsup2

    Dinner was OK, not michellin star but you wouldn't expect it in a cheap hotel!

    DW - Chicken Wings Starter and Steak

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    [​IMG]

    Me - Breaded Garlic & Herb Mushrooms which were neither herby or garlicy followed by Fish and Chips

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    DD - Garlic Bread and Fish and Chips

    Now back in the room, absolutely shattered and ready for sleepy time.

    Next update will be from the other side of the ocean!!
     
  20. SilentK

    SilentK Mouseketeer

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    Hope you had a good trip.

    Looking forward to reading more :)
     
  21. karentan

    karentan <font color=green>my main job for tomorrow is to g

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    yay, glad you guys are doing a trippie! jealous of the real USA trick or treating though!
     

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