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What is the shortest reasonable time to spend at WDW for a 12 hour drive?

Discussion in 'Theme Parks Attractions and Strategies' started by Tara8595, Dec 29, 2012.

  1. misha

    misha Mouseketeer

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    We live about an hour northwest of you and we drive all the time! My kids are older but have always been great riders. You know yourself and your children - if you can drive it safely then go for it! :goodvibes

    If we could - we would do it more often! :) Have a wonderful time!
     
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  3. Escape Artist

    Escape Artist Planning another getaway

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    It depends on what your goal is.

    If your goal is to have your 5yo love Disney, this probably isn't the way to do it. 24 hours of riding in the car and spending time at Disney with two overtired parents is probably not a recipe for success. And two overtired parents driving 12 hours back home sounds kind of dangerous to me.

    We've done a lot of long-distance drives to Disney, but I'd wait until you can stay longer. Get your 5yo all excited about the next trip and then go when you can stay longer. I've got the "But I wanna go now's!" too, but WDW will still be there when it's the right time to do it.

    If you've got the family time available, I'd go plan something awesome closer to home this time around. :goodvibes
     
  4. tink20

    tink20 DIS Veteran

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    We wake early and drive 8 hours, check in and go to a park that afternoon, usually around 3p, but personally I would like at least 3 full days at WDW for an 8hr drive. We do a week usually. Don't know about 12 though.
     
  5. geenerbell

    geenerbell Am I caught up with Robo yet?

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    We drove 16 hours for 5 days in Dec. 2010 but we had two driving days on each end. It was very doable and a great trip. Is there anyway you could leave Thursday after work? It would feel like you added a whole day on to your trip. If you have 2 drivers you could drive straight through and check in Friday morning.
     
  6. polyfor4

    polyfor4 Mouseketeer

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    We drove 9 hours for a 2 night stay in October. We had never been to MNSSHP and due to money and school schedules, that was our only time in the park. We had a great time and got the Disney magic we needed. It's hard but if you go multiple times in a year it becomes more of a bonus trip- you're just happy to be there. And like the OP we went to be there in that season in the moment. I don't plan on doing another trip like that but sometimes you need a quick Disney trip whether it makes sense or not!
     
  7. awoogala

    awoogala Mouseketeer

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    I would do it, as long as my husband didn't come. LOL!
    We are driving 18 hours from nj, driving all night, staying a week, though.
    12 hours I could do for a weekend trip no problem! (although, I would add a day or two if I could- is there some reason he can't miss a day or 2? It is kindergarten!)
     
  8. disfan4life1

    disfan4life1 Mouseketeer

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    We have driven 11 hours strait through the night on Friday. Checked in at 2am. Slept for 4 hours. Spent the entire day Saturday at MK. Back in bed for 1am. Up at
     
  9. disfan4life1

    disfan4life1 Mouseketeer

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    6am. Spent the day at HS. Left at 5 pm. Drove all night till 3am. Slept 3 hrs and got kids up for school on Monday morning. Tiring but well worth it. What a rush!!!!
     
  10. North of Mouse

    North of Mouse DIS Veteran

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    Seriously?? How many days of your week end would be left to be at Disney? That would be a costly, tiring week end :eek:
     
  11. MelissathePooh

    MelissathePooh Disney Regular

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    We're doing just about that for a quick Universal weekend over MLK weekend. Its anywhere from 8.5 - 10 hours depending on traffic for us one way.

    We have found that weekends at Disney are great if you don't try and do too much. We prefer weekends at Universal since there are only 2 parks and if you stay onsite that is more than enough time to enjoy everything at a slow and easy pace. Disney for week or more and Universal for weekends.

    We'll take the kids out at lunch time Friday, drive and check in that night. Sat - US and Sun at IOA. Drive home Monday - leave by 11 or 12. Everyone is still tired on Tuesday, but not too bad.

    My only suggestion is to consider Universal for weekend trips. Disney can be done in 2 days, but you'll pay for it in fatigue later on!
     
  12. ~Tonga Wingo~

    ~Tonga Wingo~ A.K.A Mrs. Dale

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    I'm about 16 hours and would totally do it if I had someone to drive with me! I wish it was only 12 hours. Sadly my family thinks I'm off the rocker with my Disney obsession so they wouldn't. I say go for it and have a fabulous time (I'd let your son skip Tuesday though too :cool1:).
     
  13. mfd25wife

    mfd25wife DIS Veteran

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    I wouldn't. Our drive is about the same, and we've done it many times. We wouldn't drive for less than 5 days at WDW.
     
  14. scjo68

    scjo68 DIS Veteran

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    Hi! We are in Richmond, too, so have done the 12 hour drive many times.

    Would the idea be crazy? Yes....
    But would I be tempted to try it? Maybe....
    I would look at it as one of those "crazy" things you do once just to say you did it. Could be fun.
    On the other hand, with a five- year-old, I would be wary of doing it. It seems like something I would do with just another adult. I think with a small child, alot more "buffer"time is helpful- a few hours here and there to play with- take a break/nap/ playtime.

    DH and I are just going for 4 days at the end of January- but we are flying for the first time. We were lucky and got a direct flight, so we will get there quickly.
     
  15. AllieBoo

    AllieBoo “Second star to the right and straight on 'til mor

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    We are about 10-11 hours away and I wouldn't do it. I'm a huge Disney fan and I am always plotting to go back, but for me, the driving is just too tiring to only stay that short of a time. We typically stay for 8 days and even that doesn't seem like enough sometimes!
     
  16. kaligal

    kaligal DIS Veteran

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    If you want to do it, no reason not to! So you spend a lot of time in the car and don't take a long trip. Big whup. You still have fun. Fun is good. You don't need a mathematical formula about time spent driving vs. time spent in the parks to justify fun. You don't need to justify fun at all.

    I vote for fun.
     
  17. Havana

    Havana DIS Veteran

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    We drive 9 hours and go for just one full day. We leave after work friday night. Go to the parks Saturday and drive home Sunday. We do this once or twice a year in addition to a few longer trips. It is a great way get a dose of disney magic.
     
  18. Beezle2

    Beezle2 DIS Veteran

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    We drive about 18 hours from MI and I wouldn't do it unless I could get a full week to enjoy the trip.

    If we go in March it will be a leave Fri @ noon, arrive Sat, stay till following Sat, leave early that day to arrive home early on Sun. I'm still thinking flying would be great if I can find cheap flights.
     
  19. Tara8595

    Tara8595 DIS Veteran

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    We're pretty fortunate (or obsessed - take your pick) in that we go enough that we don't feel the need to do it all every time. We really just do the parks open-lunch, take a nap, and then go back out for dinner and one of the nighttime celebrations.

    Thanks for all the feedback! We are going to give it a go and see how it goes. One of my neighbors drove down and hit MK for 16 hours for that MK open 24 hours day, and then drove home - and said it was one of the best trips they'd taken - so I don't feel too bad.
     
  20. larryz

    larryz A few of my favorite turrets... DIS Lifetime Sponsor

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    But what if you think math is fun? (I'm not saying I do -- I was a psych major for a reason...)

    Isn't there some fun in being able to justify a long road trip for a relatively short stay? And what about those who say "getting there is half the fun"?

    I vote for fun, too, but fun is where you find it.
     
  21. kaligal

    kaligal DIS Veteran

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    Lol, I do think math is fun. I always really, really liked math. It's so easy and concrete. You can count on math. Math always has an answer.

    I'm just saying that the OP doesn't have to justify her trip with mathematics.

    And if its fun for OP to go, yay. If it isn't, that's good, too. :)
     

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