2018 - the year of getting the most use out of my AP! Completed 2/14

Discussion in 'Pre-Trip Reports and Plans' started by Cloe Colton, Jun 4, 2018.

  1. Cloe Colton

    Cloe Colton DIS Veteran

    Mar 6, 2018
    Hello all!

    To introduce myself my name is Cloe and on this trip I will be traveling with my ever patient DH Dan!


    We are high school sweethearts and have been together for ten years this year! I have been to Disney World many, many times, basically as much as I can and have gone my whole life. My first trip was at 6 months old and basically went every other year growing up until I had my own money and now its more like 2-3 times a year! lol. I just became an AP on my last trip and literally don't know why I waited so long. I don't want to even think of the dollars I could have saved the last few years! Dan didn't go to Disney growing up and his first time was with me and my family five years ago. He loves Disney as much as a normal person does but does enjoy doing other things outside of Disney, so we try to find a good balance. (And when he won't go with me, my Mom and sister are usually on board!

    We will be celebrating our one year anniversary at the Happiest Place on Earth this July.

    When we got married I promised him our honeymoon wouldn't be to Disney because we had been so many times already (and tbh I wanted something different as well) but what I secretly had in mind was a fantastic trip to Disney AFTER the honeymoon! :rolleyes1

    Unfortunately, I lost my job three weeks before our wedding so two trips wasn't in the budget, but we still thoroughly enjoyed our honeymoon to Maui and Oahu, Hawaii. Even staying at Aulani (see I got some Disney in there! haha):tinker:

    Basically as soon as I started my new job in January I began plotting a big anniversary trip and since I work for a bank I HAVE to take two weeks mandatory every year I would have plenty of time for a trip!

    Unbeknownst to my hubby, I booked a room for us at the Wilderness Lodge for July 20th-July 27th. (Which actually worked in our favor when the parking costs came out since we were grandfathered in to no parking fees) Our wedding anniversary is July 21st so my thought was to fly in the day before so we could have a restful and magical anniversary and spend a week in Disney. I figured if the dates didn't work for my husband we could change them but at least I would have a trip placeholder and would secure the standard view rooms before they booked up!

    Eventually I got my husband on board for the trip and soon we were officially going! I secured my two weeks off at work beginning July 20th and he was able to get all of the days off he needed as well. I booked our rental car through EZ Rental (we always use them and haven't had any issues in the past) and bought Dan's park ticket through Undercover Tourist, opting for the 4 day MYW with 2 extra days sp 6 days in total for him (and my AP).

    Well, then came my first addition to the trip. In April, I began looking at flights and keeping an eye on prices for Southwest. We live in Buffalo and for us, the best airline is Southwest since they have multiple straight thru flights daily, the two free checked bags and free flight changes. Well, when I began looking into flights on July 20th, they did have a very early morning flight 6:20am-8:45am or a very late 12:40pm-3:20pm. Growing up, my family always picked the very early morning flights because you get to maximize your day without paying for an additional night at a hotel. Well as an adult with my own funds, I have come to HATE those early morning flights. They make me super nauseous all day, I worry about oversleeping and it's such a rush to pack up those last minute items before you leave. Plus, any delays that happen just make you mentally figure out everything you might be missing in Disney and when you fly in at night with no plans, you get there when you get there! So I called up Dan at work and asked him if he thought he could schedule himself an early shift on July 19th so that we could fly out that night. He was totally down to do so since early morning flights make him sick, too (and apparently make me cranky :rolleyes1 ). The 6:50PM flight on July 19th was actually cheaper than any of the July 20th flights anyway and an additional one night stay at POP! wouldn't break the bank. Plus then we'd be able to get an additional night in Disney plus the full day on July 20th, feeling fresh and relaxed!

    So, we were now going July 19th - July 27th. The flight I wanted on July 27th was way more than I was willing to spend, but a very early morning flight home was available at $89 a pop so I booked them as placeholders because I knew I could easily switch the flight if I needed to. Eventually, I found the flight I wanted on July 27th at 7:55PM for the price I wanted, so we would maximize our full last day. We usually enjoy going to see a movie in Disney Springs or mini putt at one of the courses. Why go home before you have to, right? haha So technically that was the second "addition" to the trip!

    Then Disney decided to bring back Disney After Hours. My cousins had tried it out in the past and had raved about it. I looked at the dates and realized it actually fell on our anniversary the week we were going. When I had booked the trip, I had planned NO parks for the day of our anniversary. Spending the day in the hot, July sun in any of the parks sounded the least bit relaxing for our anniversary. But going to dinner at California Grill and then to DAH sounded pretty fun actually! So I went ahead and booked the tickets and was able to get the AP discount on both of our tickets :)

    Not that this is technically an addition but I did change our night at Pop at the end of May. I spend quite a bit of time looking at DVC hotel availabilities and one just happened to open up at Bay Lake Tower for a studio on July 19th. I had to try to get it! It was more expensive than POP! BUT what a great way to start our trip! We would also avoid that pesky one night parking fee at Bay Lake since its a DVC resort and they are exempt. Plus, when we get in we can grab a snack at the Contemporary, walk around, shop, maybe take a ride around the monorail? Usually when I fly in the night before for POP, I head to Boardwalk to get pizza from the Pizza Window...but this just sounds more fun and more anniversary-like! And, my Mom and Dad actually honeymooned at the Contemporary so it seemed even more fitting to start our trip here!

    Then came our third, and definitely final addition to our trip. We were watching youtube and a suggestion popped up for a youtuber vlogging her Disney Dream Cruise experience. Dan wanted to watch it and who am I to say no to that? Basically we both fell in love with what we were seeing. Dan has always wanted to try a cruise and I wasn't entirely sold. To me it was only worth it if it was a Disney Cruise and I didn't think he would be sold on that. We talked on it for a little bit and looked up the dates of Disney Dream Cruises leaving out of Port Canaveral in July and there just so happened to be a three night Bahamas itinerary leaving July 27th!

    It almost seemed too good to be true. I knew I could swing it since I have two weeks off from work anyway but we weren't sure that Dan would be able to since he was also taking off a few days the next week for a wedding that he was in. So until he could get his request in we began doing as much research as possible. Dan considered doing the same itinerary through Royal Caribbean but I wasn't sold unless it was a Disney Cruise. Yes, it would save money but was it worth the savings? From everything we both read, the value in the Disney Cruises was there. No one seemed to walk away from the Disney Cruises feeling like they didn't get their moneys worth. Also, just the decor of the ship and the restaurants looked so much more elegant than the other ships we looked at. So, the day Dan requested the additional days off I paid off my Disney credit card so that I was prepared and could get that good ole 0% financing if we were able to go. On Friday of last week I booked our very first Disney Dream Cruise! And we are both so excited. This seems like the perfect way to end our anniversary trip. Especially since you usually need a vacation from your vacation anyway! lol

    So what does our trip look like?

    July 19th -

    SW Flight 6:50pm-9:20PM. Land and grab our rental car from EZ Car Rental.
    Head to Bay Lake Tower.

    July 20th -

    Breakfast at the Contemporary QS.
    Animal Kingdom - FP for FOP, Everest and Dinosaur.
    Small lunch at QS Yak and Yeti
    Head over to Wilderness Lodge to check out our room and get refreshed for dinner.
    Disney Springs - The Void, shopping and dinner at Paddlefish. Maybe some after dinner drinks at Winebar George or The Edison

    July 21st (Anniversary) -

    Lunch at Grand Floridian Cafe.
    Couples massage at Senses Spa
    Hang by the pool at Wilderness Lodge
    Late dinner at California Grill and to watch Happily Ever After
    Grabbed a late FP for SDMT to ride before the party in case the line is too long during the party
    Disney After Hours

    July 22nd -

    Lunch at Coral Reef
    FP for Spaceship Earth, Test Track and Living with the Land
    Dinner at Le Cellier

    July 23rd -

    Hollywood Studios
    Lunch at Woodys Lunchbox
    FP for Slinky Dog Dash, Rock N Rollercoaster, Tower of Terror
    Snack at Baseline Taphouse
    Dinner at Narcooses

    July 24th -

    Rest day/chill by the pool
    Lunch at Geyser Point
    Dinner at Artist Point
    Magic Kingdom in the evening for ice cream sundaes from The Plaza and to watch Happily Ever After
    FP for Buzz Lightyear, Space Mountain and Seven Dwarfs Mine Train

    July 25th -

    Animal Kingdom
    Lunch at Satuli Canteen
    FP for FOP, Safari and Everest
    Dinner at Jiko

    July 26th -

    Magic Kingdom
    Lunch at The Plaza
    FP for Space Mtn, SDMT and Thunder Mtn
    Dinner at Cinderella's Royal Table

    July 27th -

    Check out of Wilderness Lodge
    Drive to Port Canaveral for Disney Dream Cruise
    Dinner at Palo at 8 - canceled and changed to the July 29th

    July 28th -

    Nassau, Bahamas
    Planning to book the Atlantis Aquaventure Excursion. To see Atlantis has always been a bucketlist item for me and Dan loves waterparks so its a perfect match!
    Pirates night!

    July 29th -

    Castaway Cay - planning on packing our own snorkel gear and possibly renting bikes to explore the island. But we will wait until the day of because I will be perfectly happy sunbathing all day!
    Dinner at Palo at 8:30

    July 30th -

    Disembark in Port Canaveral
    Spend the afternoon in Disney Springs - shop or maybe see a movie or possibly try bowling?
    Early dinner at Art Smith's Homecomin'
    Head to the airport

    Any suggestions or thoughts are greatly appreciated! Especially when it comes to the cruise since neither of us have ever done one!
    Last edited: Jun 13, 2018
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  2. Cloe Colton

    Cloe Colton DIS Veteran

    Mar 6, 2018
    How I keep track of everything - yes I am type A

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    Last edited: Jun 4, 2018
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  4. sturner324

    sturner324 Mouseketeer

    Aug 11, 2011
    Happy anniversary! Lovely spreadsheet.

    I'm always a little envious of people who are required 2 week vacations, haha! I always feel a little guilty asking for 2 weeks off, but that doesn't stop me from doing it anyway. :)

    This sounds like a nice combination, and a great introduction to cruising. Our first cruise was also paired with some parks. Just when you're feeling sad about leaving one part of your vacation - SURPRISE! There's a whole other adventure waiting.
  5. reyasmommy

    reyasmommy DIS Veteran

    Jul 20, 2007
    Hi !
    We will be at Disney at the same time as you!

    You'll love the Disney Cruise... We've done it twice and LOVE everything about it. We're actually going to try RCCL next summer. We wanted to do Disney again but it was twice the amount, and that 3K can go towards more time at WDW. We usually like to do Universal for a few days, take a small cruise, and then top it off with 1 1/2 weeks at Disney.

    Have a wonderful Anniversary and Trip!
  6. Cloe Colton

    Cloe Colton DIS Veteran

    Mar 6, 2018
    Its almost a double edged sword since I don't want to waste the vacation time haha but its definitely nice that no one can say no! lol

    Yeah, the cruise will be a nice way to end our vacation, especially since Disney is always go go go!

    How fun!

    Yeah we are really excited about the cruise, I do not doubt that it was twice as much as another cruise lol

    It definitely seems like a nice mix to add into a trip!
    Last edited: Jun 5, 2018
  7. Cloe Colton

    Cloe Colton DIS Veteran

    Mar 6, 2018
    For the night of July 24th I had originally booked the Happily Ever After dessert party. Even though the evening at MK was going to be a relaxed one I thought it would be nice to try something new and be guaranteed a decent view since I haven't actually watched HEA from in the parks yet (still a Wishes fan, sorry!). But with the addition of the after fireworks party and the rushed feeling I would have to stake out a spot in the garden plaza and rush through the desserts I decided to cancel.

    I could have booked the after party but it I'm going to enter the garden an hour ahead of time anyway I might as well save the money and we can just get our own ice cream sundaes from The Plaza Ice Cream shop!

    And lets be real honest, I'm going for the photos to post on instagram and those light posts KILL me from the garden plaza viewing! lol
  8. Cloe Colton

    Cloe Colton DIS Veteran

    Mar 6, 2018
    Based on recommendations from the DCL forums, I changed my Palo reservation from the first night to the last night. When I had booked it I thought I probably should have done this in the first place but since the dining reservation system has been so finicky for me and not at all user-friendly, I had just kept what I booked. But today I decided I wanted to try to change the reservation.

    I spoke to a representative through chat (dumb on my part!) and he told me to change it I had to cancel it. Well, of course as I cancelled my original reservation and decided to try to change it the website crashed. Couldn't log in, couldn't view anything, nothing. Granted in my panic I should have realized if I was having issues that probably everyone else was but reason wasn't really on my mind lol. Thankfully after a twenty five minute phone call they were able to find me a reservation on the last night of our cruise for Palo.

    I will say though - so many people have raved about the excellent DCL phone customer service and I have had zero luck with that. When I called yesterday to request the dining rotation, I said "can I request which dining rotation I get?" and the woman had me sit in dead silence for at least a minute before saying anything back. And today the woman basically inferred I was lying about having a reservation at Palo when I had already stated I had just cancelled it before calling. It wasn't until the end of the conversation that she said she saw I did previously have a reservation there. And then proceeded to tell me to never cancel on my own and to call to modify. WELL TELL THAT TO YOUR CHAT PEEPS lol

    Hopefully I won't need to call them anymore and can just avoid the aggravation altogether! :dancer:

    EDIT: Because of the system glitches yesterday for some reason I was only showing as having a reservation, not the both of us. Thankfully I was able to cancel mine and rebook the both of ours so now we're all set!
    Last edited: Jun 6, 2018
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  9. Cloe Colton

    Cloe Colton DIS Veteran

    Mar 6, 2018
    Souvenirs I plan to get:

    Magic Kingdom/Disney Springs - Millennial Pink Spirit Jersey or Cinderella spirit jersey
    DCL - DCL Spirit Jersey
    (Do I NEED both? No. But I certainly want both!)
    Anywhere - I'm not sure if they are still being sold but I still desperately want the grey passport sweatshirt with all four parks on it. It was sold out when I was there in March and I settled for the blue zip up but its not the same and I get SO much use out of Disney sweaters and jerseys since I am always perpetually cold!
    MK - I want a popcorn bucket! They seem so fun! Especially to have at home when you are missing Disney!
    EPCOT Germany - I really want to get an ornament from here, they look beautiful! Our tree is red and gold themed with a dash of pink so anything in those colors!
    DCL - I saw someone get this gold roped mickey shape ornament from DCL, again fits with our theme!
    Anywhere - The pink Rapunzel bauble is super cute!
    (How the heck am I getting all of these home?? lol)
    DS - I live in fantasyland Alex and Ani
    Anywhere - Mug (we own a lot of Mr. and Mrs. themed mugs so I would like to start a collection of Disney mugs to be used by guests when they come over)
    Anywhere - Piglet Pin (Because we call our pug Joy Piglet because of the noises she makes sometimes)
    Wilderness Lodge - Wilderness Lodge pin since its our first time staying here!
    DCL - DCL pin
    DAH - DAH pin (is this a thing?)
    MK - HEA pin

    Things I want to try:

    Animal Kingdom
    Nomad Lounge - Jenns Tattoo
    Eight Spoon Cafe - Sweet Chili Shrimp Baked Mac and Cheese
    Jiko - a sweet South African white wine (I plan on getting a recommendation from the wait staff)
    MK - Incredibles pretzel mask, slush mint julep
    Hollywood Studios
    Baseline Taphouse - California Sunset
    Cronut (How have I never had one of these???)
    Morocco - Habibi daiquiri
    Narcooses - White Sangria and their mashed potatoes

    Things I want to do:
    I would like to try to do the lantern photo in MK. The line is always SO long though and I don't find it worth it to wait forever for just a photo. Maybe during DAH?
    Last edited: Jun 9, 2018
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  10. Cloe Colton

    Cloe Colton DIS Veteran

    Mar 6, 2018
    How I've Saved Some Cost for this trip:

    Southwest flights
    - From my Spring Break trip in March through Southwest the flights we had booked had gone lower before our trip. So when I rebooked them I received a ~$40 flight voucher. What I didn't realize was that the flight vouchers you receive from booking a cheaper flight have to be applied to the person who originally owned the flight. Which was fine and I could use the credit for myself but I had also planned to use the vouchers my Mom and sister had accumulated so they wouldn't go to waste since they need to be used within the year. But alas, I couldn't (but I guess gives us reason to go some other time to use them up!). I also had enough southwest rapid rewards points to book one of our flights one way for free + the $5.60 non-waivable fee so score!

    Rental Car - We always use EZ Car Rental. I know some people prefer to use the bigger names but so far we've had great experiences with EZ Car Rental and I've used them all over. They generally have the best prices and always have at least a 10% coupon. Plus, I am a huge proponent of always joining any rewards programs (as long as they are free to join, because why not?!) and EZ Car Rental now allows points to be accumulated and cashed out for a few different options, one being a cash discount on your rental. So we were able to get $30 off our rental!

    Hotel - I knew going into this trip the lodging aspect of our trip was not going to be cheap since we wanted to do Wilderness Lodge. I had tried to rent DVC points and stay through Copper Creek but since we were within 7 months there was obviously NO availability. So I booked the rack rate when I booked the trip hoping some discount would pop up! After my Spring Break trip I received an email from Disney for a special code offer and it could be used on Wilderness Lodge! So for the room that started out at like ~$354-ish went down to $278! YES! Uh yeah I'll definitely take over $500 in savings Disney! (and book other things just to give it right back to you) :rotfl2:

    Random Saves - I received an email from DVC that if I was willing to take a 20 minute virtual tour via phone call I would receive a $25 giftcard. I am always interested in DVC so I had no problem doing that! Managed to get the phone call done on my ride home from work one day! (I'm still interested but it's just not the time for us right now. I'm still not sure how paying such a huge investment plus fees every year makes sense for us. Plus, we never plan any trip more than 6 months out (major evidence above) so I don't see how we'd ever get any other rooms other than Saratoga or OKW and neither of those resorts are super appealing to me. So no for now!)

    Credit Card - I have the Disney Visa credit card and I haven't recently been using it as much as I should because I normally have better rewards elsewhere. But with the Disney Cruise and their 0% financing for 6 months this is what we used to book our cruise! And managed to snag ~$43 in rewards between the cruise and Joy's hernia surgery a couple of months ago. Any extra money is always a plus!

    Joy's Kennel (our pug!) - Originally I had planned for our pug, Joy, to spend our stay at a NFP kennel that is on our way to the airport. While I really liked their facilities when she did her day trial I just couldn't go through with it. She has terrible separation anxiety when DH and I are not home and I couldn't even begin to think how she would do being in a cage by herself every night. The main reason we had opted for this choice was that my Mom and Dad had said originally they didn't want to do it (at the time their dogs and Joy would get along but it would stress their dog Milo out). Well, fast forward five months and Joy has now been neutered and Milo and her while not bestfriends, get along pretty well! One night I had to help my Mom with her cell phone not turning on (oh Iphones and your necessity to be updated!) and I asked her if she would PLEASE watch Joy. I said I would pay her and she was on board lol working in a school system means she gets summers off and I knew if I offered her enough money for the middle of summer when she has no money coming in she would probably say yes. By her watching Joy we are saving around $168. And Joy will be so much happier being with people she knows and she'll still have two other pups to play with!

    Dining - There was also a deal for Paddlefish giftcards where if you purchased a $100 giftcard you received $25 for free for Paddlefish. While not much, we will definitely spend that between the two of us at dinner. And if we have any leftover (which I doubt we will!) we can always use it for a drink at the bar!

    Lastly, I plan on purchasing the Tables in Wonderland card when we get to Disney. I've done the math on what we will likely spend and as of right now it will save us $6 over the $150 :rotfl:While not much, this isn't really accounting for any other extras beyond what I'm expecting we'll get. Also, I suspect my Mom and I will make it done to Disney at least one more time before my AP expires so it will eventually save me more than that. (I'm REALLY kicking myself I didn't get it during my Spring Break trip! I think the ability to get free valet service is also a nice perk since we will be going to Disney in July and if it's monsooning before dinner we can just pull up and avoid becoming drowned rats!
    Last edited: Jun 19, 2018
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  11. Cloe Colton

    Cloe Colton DIS Veteran

    Mar 6, 2018
    Exciting news! As of right now my Mom, my sister, Calista and I are planning on a trip to WDW this October! Basically since we came home from our trip in March (trip report in progress here - https://www.disboards.com/threads/spring-break-2018-lets-go-get-some-pics-for-insta.3686990/ ) we have been toying with the idea of another trip. We always say that it's probably the last trip we'll be able to do as a girls trip but we always seem to manage to sneak another one in! With my annual pass I am definitely down for another trip to Disney! (Anyone else feel like the AP actually costs you more money since you just want to get as much use out of it as you can??!)

    As of right now I have Pop Century booked for October 5th - 10th. The tentative plan will be to fly in late Friday night once we are all out of work and school and then fly home late Wednesday. With Columbus day that Monday we will all only need two days off from work. And Calista's university has a fall break that week for some strange reason (probably due to Columbus day) so we don't have to worry about her missing any school! Win! There's a chance we may shorten the trip and just go through the 9th but that was the length of our last trip and we really burned the candles at both ends to get to all of the parks. My ankles were so swollen after that trip!

    Normally, picking what parks for what days is easy for me. We usually try to do MK as our last full day, EPCOT is usually the first or second day and the rest fall where they do. Well now, the strategy is definitely to get AK towards the end of the trip to secure a FOP FP, definitely don't want HS to be day one either to get a SDD FP and EPCOT can't be first or second either because it will be F&W weekend and I would rather not deal with those crowds. Good thing I like puzzles!

    The three options I see right now are -

    Saturday 1. MK 2. EPCOT 3. HS
    Sunday 1. HS 2. HS 3. EPCOT
    Monday 1. MNSSHP 2. MNSSHP 3. MNSSHP
    Tuesday 1. EPCOT 2. AK 3. AK
    Wednesday (half day) 1. AK 2. MK 3. MK

    Plan 1. Only downside to this plan is that we would be doing MK first and the middle when we normally try to have this toward the end. Plus it will get like 1.5 days and AK will only get a half day.
    Plan 2. EPCOT will fall on a Saturday which from what I've read is like the worst idea but idk how much we will try or do at the booths. I will probably try a few things but we usually get Via Napoli for dinner.
    Plan 3. Same deal as option 2's problem with Epcot but probably more optimal to do EPCOT on a Sunday than a Saturday. But then HS will fall on 60+1 (as we will check in technically on the Friday). So I will probably keep an eye out to see how hard it is to get a FP this day for SDD being 60+1 because it really might not be a huge issue, especially if we aren't super strict on what time we get. Plus, I will be riding it at the end of July and who knows if it will even be worth the stress of getting a FP if it is like a Barnstormer type ride (although I know my Mom and sister will probably want to ride it since it's new so hopefully it will just be easier to get that day!).

    So as of right now I would probably opt for plan 3. But that can always change!
    Last edited: Jun 19, 2018
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  12. Cloe Colton

    Cloe Colton DIS Veteran

    Mar 6, 2018
    One month until we are headed to Disney World! I actually can't believe we are only a month out now since I've been plotting *ahem* planning this trip since January.

    I almost don't want the next month to fly by because I love the anticipation of a trip to Disney!

    Also my Mom and I saw Incredibles 2 this weekend, so good! I'm hoping it will be available to watch again on our cruise! I'm also kind of hoping Christopher Robin will be playing as an early release but that's probably not going to happen haha a girl can dream though! :tigger:pooh:
  13. Cloe Colton

    Cloe Colton DIS Veteran

    Mar 6, 2018
    Update for July Trip:

    I called and ordered our Tables in Wonderland Card last Wednesday and they said it would take approximately 2-3 weeks to come in. So hoping it gets here on time! They said if it doesn't get here by the Monday of the week we leave to call and they will work something out. I imagine they would refund the card if it hasn't shipped by that point and I would just get one in Disney.

    Plus, our magic bands arrived yesterday! Both arrived in one day along with another package so DH was very concerned as to what the heck I went on a spending spree with! :rotfl:

    I never usually decline magic bands but I probably should start considering I dont need anymore. But I figure the cost of these is most definitely built into the room price somewhere so I might as well get new ones! (If they refunded any sort of $$ back for declining them I definitely would start declining. Even just like $5 a band. But I feel like it would probably swing the other way if anything! lol)

    Update for October trip:

    After some deliberation and thinking I think I've decided on our plan! I had originally planned to do MNSSHP but the party ticket cost plus my Mom and sisters myw tickets makes the total ticket costs pretty steep. Especially since we can get an extra normal day in Disney is like $5 if we go with the tickets from undercover tourist. So we've decided against the Halloween party!

    Friday October 5 - Fly in Friday night Check in to POP! We will probably grab pizza from the Pizza Window at the Boardwalk this night.

    Saturday October 6 - EPCOT - I know this is like the very day you should NOT do EPCOT because of F&W but I really don't see us going to that many booths and will probably just do dinner at Via Napoli like always so the F&W festival shouldn't affect the rides and the rest of the park as much (at least I hope!) I will say, when I go to make FP's I may switch EPCOT & HS if there are any SDD FP's available. I was able to get SDD at almost all times 60+1 on my FP day for my July trip so it could happen again!

    Sunday October 7 - Magic Kingdom - I was able to snag a brunch at California Grill this day so it makes the most sense to head to MK after brunch (main reason why I haven't switched MK and EPCOT). I mean technically we could still monorail all the way from Contemporary to EPCOT but I've heard the transport back can sometimes take over an hour so that's not ideal. Right now I have a dinner booked at The Plaza but my Mom would like to do Cinderella's Royal Table again so I am keeping an eye out for an open reservation.

    Monday October 8 - Hollywood Studios - Main reason I didn't put HS on Saturday over EPCOT is because I am really hoping to snag a Slinky Dog Dash FP for this day for us. I've read 60+3 has been doable for FP, just later in the day which is fine for us since we aren't early risers anyway! If we get a later FP for this we may just hang by the pool in the morning and head to HS at night since we don't really watch many of the shows. Or we will take a mid day break this day. That will all depend on what FP we get! I would like to actually just get a FP for this when its dark out because the ride looks awesome all lit up but tbh I will really take whatever I can get! But like I said, I may switch this to Saturday if there's FP available. Right now I have dinner booked at Morimoto Asia in DS. This was Calista's request and we all love sushi so we should love it! I had wanted to try the Edison but maybe some other time! If I do switch HS and EPCOT I will find somewhere else for us to eat Saturday night because I really don't enjoy DS on Saturday nights!

    Tuesday October 9 - Check out from POP! Check in to Polynesian! I was able to rent DVC points for one night at the Polynesian which we've done before and really enjoyed even if it is for just one night! We will head to Animal Kingdom this day - Obviously this is our last full day and the plan is to get FOP FP. I have dinner booked at Sanaa for now but I'm not sure we will keep that. We do like Kona Cafe so I may see if there's anything available there or what my Mom and sister would like to do. There is also a MNSSHP that night so I am hoping we can catch the fireworks from the Polynesian beach! (Or even our room since we have a lake view room!!) I feel like this decision makes me feel better about not doing the party too because other than the short ride lines we didn't take too much advantage of the party offerings when we went last year. My Mom wasn't a huge fan of the parade (I was but it's not enough for me to go to the party solely for that) and no one really wanted to stake out a spot for fireworks. We went trick or treating but I think we left all of the candy with my cousin who lives in Florida because we didn't eat like any of it and flew with Allegiant so we had minimal packing space to go home. So while we had fun and it was economical to do the party when we were only doing two days in Disney last year it just doesn't make sense for us to do it this year.

    Wednesday October 10 - Magic Kingdom - I currently have an early lunch booked at Kona this day but I need to ask my Mom if she'd rather do Grand Floridian Cafe again OR I'm also using Touring Plans reservation finder to hoepefully snag a Be Our Guest. I also don't know if they want to do a park this day or not since we can just hang out at the Poly pool this day. We may just buy the extra day since it's pretty cheap and decide day of if we want to go to the park or not since we don't have to head to the airport until like 5:30.

    I always feel so much better once I get my days nailed down!
    Last edited: Jun 29, 2018
    chunkymonkey and Jenny Sanders like this.
  14. Cloe Colton

    Cloe Colton DIS Veteran

    Mar 6, 2018
    October Trip -

    Debating on whether or not the car is worth it for us this trip. I think its pretty close to breaking even if we use ubers and lyft but might be more headache if we don't have a car so I will leave the decision up to my Mom. I don't see us using the buses and other transportation that much but worth looking into! Now if the gondolas were open that would make the decision super easy! haha Plus the parking fee isn't that extravagant at the value resorts.

    I've currently booked a rental car and I'm hoping the price will drop a bit to make it more price efficient.

    Flights - I currently have our flight home booked but not there yet. I noticed for my July trip that Southwest started putting flights on sale like a 6-8 weeks out so I will look once it gets closer. I don't see Southwest bumping the price up more than it already is and Airhint is telling me to hold off for now so I'll just keep an eye on them. We got such a good deal on our flights home that I don't want the flight there to be crazy expensive!
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  15. Cloe Colton

    Cloe Colton DIS Veteran

    Mar 6, 2018
    July Trip -

    Just booked our tickets for The Void in Disney Springs! I contemplated just trying to do a walkup that night because it seems availability is pretty good but we really only have a certain time slot to do it since we have reservations for dinner the same night at Paddlefish and will be going to AK in the afternoon.

    I'm excited though! DH isn't a huge Star Wars fan but he does enjoy the films (as do I) and he loves VR so it should be a fun experience!

    Also, my Tables in Wonderland card came in the mail yesterday! So it really only took a week from the day I called to come. Which is awesome, one less thing I need to worry about for the next few weeks! I'm glad I called too because I've heard if you buy it in the parks you get a paper card whereas by calling I get an actual card! Woo! I officailly have like a Disney section in my wallet with my AP, couple of Disney giftcards, my Disney Visa rewards card, our hard tickets for DAH (because I don't trust technology to not have them lol) and now my TIW card!

    We are at 20 Days for our trip! I can't believe it's coming so soon!
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  16. Grumpy's Wife

    Grumpy's Wife Dollar Tree gal here

    Jan 28, 2005
    You are going to love the Disney Cruise! What a fantastic way to end your anniversary trip. I'm reading your trip report now with your mom and sister. Can't wait to hear all about this one too.
    Cloe Colton likes this.
  17. Cloe Colton

    Cloe Colton DIS Veteran

    Mar 6, 2018
    We are so excited for the cruise! I have a feeling we are going to love it and have a placeholder cruise booked before we even get off! Lol it felt like a very spontaneous decision to make but now it feels like it was always meant to be apart of this trip!

    I really enjoyed writing a trip report, such a fun way to relive and document the trip! I will have a lot to write for my next one! Haha
  18. disneyAndi14

    disneyAndi14 DIS Veteran

    Jan 1, 2014
    Great planning, we are doing the DAH in August, you will have to let us know how you liked it!

    We have never rented a car and always used Disney transportation except the last few trips we have used Uber a few times and it has worked well.

    I love Disney in October!
  19. Cloe Colton

    Cloe Colton DIS Veteran

    Mar 6, 2018
    Definitely! My cousins have gone twice in February and raved about it so I'm excited!

    I think because we've always rented a car we've just gotten used to having one and don't like waiting when we know we can just hop in the car and go! Haha I definitely think we wouldn't mind now with the availability of lyft and uber but we probably will end up with a car at my mom's request!
  20. Cloe Colton

    Cloe Colton DIS Veteran

    Mar 6, 2018
    9 days!!!

    I'm trying not to wish my days away since its summer and the weather is beautiful but I cannot wait to be on vacation. This is like my dream Disney trip and the work days are just SLOWLY crawling by haha

    I think I need to plan something fun this weekend so I can look forward to that instead of just trying to get to next Thursday!

    On the bright side, I had to switch jobs due to restructing where I work and they were super cool about honoring my vacation. (They had no choice to, i would have been out the door otherwise! lol) And I got the approval to work from home next Thursday afternoon and log off a few hours early for my flight :flower1:

    I'm debating on what DH and I should do the last day of our trip (after the cruise). We have a car so the plan as of right now is to head back to DS and grab lunch and then probably watch a movie at the AMC (if we havent watched too many on our cruise) or maybe to try bowling. We definitely will end our day at DS because I have dinner booked at Homecomin but Im trying to decide if I would rather head to a resort for a late breakfast. Decisions, decisions!
  21. Cloe Colton

    Cloe Colton DIS Veteran

    Mar 6, 2018
    We leave this Thursday for our magical anniversary trip!

    I decided over the weekend to purchase the Landry's card for our trip. DH was showing someone he works with our itinerary and they were telling his all of these things he should try at Yak and Yeti. He was excited to tell me but I had to crush his excitement when I said I had just planned for the QS Y&Y and not the sit down.

    My main thinking was that I don't really know for sure when we would make it to Y&Y but since the Landry's card gets you in w/o a reservation I figured why not get it and try something new! Plus, finding a table at the QS is always a nightmare and in summer it will probably be too hot to sit outside anyway!

    Started packing this weekend which I swear for a Disney trip feels like a sport! Between the outfits, the ears, the bags, it's a lot to pack! Plus, packing for the cruise was a whole new situation for me too. We basically have one suitcase designated as stuff we need for the cruise (and we will leave in the rental the night of Bay Lake Tower) so hopefully that method works out! I did pack shoes in that suitcase too so it will make it into WL for that stretch of the trip!

    But most everything is packed now and I just need to finish up the extra stuff that isn't as fun to pack like the toiletries, medicine, chargers, etc.

    My cousin just came back from a stay at Yacht Club where she was upgraded to Club Level for her stay. I wish I was that lucky! I don't know that I've ever gotten pixie dust when checking in, must be so exciting when you do!
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