BIG family tips and tricks (6+)

Discussion in 'Disney for Families' started by Retroecho, Oct 27, 2018.

  1. Retroecho

    Retroecho circle skirts & pixie dust

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    hi friends! In all my Disney searching I find there’s little in the help for families of 6 or more. I wanted to share our experience on this trip staying off site and will share some on previous trips as well. Please feel free to add any and everything you’ve gleaned from your trips.

    We are a family of 6. All boys, ages 5-13 and my husband and myself.
     
  2. Retroecho

    Retroecho circle skirts & pixie dust

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    This trip we are doing crazy split stays
    1-3 doubletree suites @ Disney springs
    4-11 summer bay resort
    12 all star movies in two rooms
     
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  4. QueenIsabella

    QueenIsabella DIS Veteran

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    Wow, you're brave doing those split stays! I hope it works well for you.

    We're also a family of 6, we've done both on and off-site through the years. For on-site, DVC is my favorite. Off-site, we love Windsor Hills. But, I should also mention that my kids are weirdos--they love their space, they don't like to spend tons of time in the parks (half a day is usually sufficient), and they prefer to eat home-cooked meals to going to restaurants. So for us, a house off-site is a no-brainer. And I'm not really complaining, in that their choices save us a ton of money. I still think they're weirdos, though, and most people would love to have the cheap kids!

    I mentioned it in another thread recently, but I'll throw it on here, too--the website Six Suitcase Travel is wonderful for larger families--it covers the entire US. It's a great resource--they've never let us down for hotel rooms that can fit up to 8 people.
     
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  5. Retroecho

    Retroecho circle skirts & pixie dust

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    That’s awesome!!! Thanks for the advice on the website. I’ll check them out!
     
  6. dmband

    dmband DIS Veteran

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    If you are not aware, the 2 rooms might not be next to each other.
    Out of our 10+ trips only once did we get rooms next to each other. Never bothered me but my wife hates it. She won this time and we are paying extra for the family site
     
  7. Retroecho

    Retroecho circle skirts & pixie dust

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    That’s interesting. Honestly I wouldn’t be too worried about it. I trust my 13 year old and 11 year old not to be crazy. They will be in our room until bedtime anyway. But we did request it so fingers crossed.
     
  8. mjkacmom

    mjkacmom DIS Veteran

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    We rented DVC points for our family of 7 (3 girls, 2 boys) and it was great, on-site with a full kitchen. Washer/ dryer, living room and multiple bathrooms. I hate packing and unpacking, so I would not enjoy a split stay.
     
  9. dmband

    dmband DIS Veteran

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    adults will also have to split up. They will not allow you to have no one over 21 in the room, at least on paper ;)
    The only thing that can be a pain is having the room door lock linked to whose band
     
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  10. Retroecho

    Retroecho circle skirts & pixie dust

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    Right hehe. We got that part.
     
  11. Retroecho

    Retroecho circle skirts & pixie dust

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    So far we are liking the doubletree. The bus service was fine although they switched charter bus stops. But that wasn’t that bad. The space in the room is nice. But honestly we just use the room to sleep so it really doesn’t matter all that much. I absolutely hate not having meal plan BUT we are saving tons of money. I dunno if we are light eaters at Disney or what, but our average meal has been around $40 so not bad at all.

    And I actually love how small it feels compared to the enormous Disney resorts. Especially value or moderate. For over $100 a night less it’s a quick walk and elevator up to our room. That’s a huge plus for me.
     
  12. mamaofsix

    mamaofsix Mouseketeer

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    We have 6 kids, ages 4-14, and always go to Disney with my parents, so party of 10. Our strategies:

    -We ALWAYS rent a villa offsite, usually Windsor Hills. For $200 a night, this year we are getting a 6 bedroom villa with it's own pool / hot tub, large kitchen & livingroom, games room and laundry. Not to mention the onsite amenities, massive resort pool and kids waterpark. You couldn't pay me to switch to a hotel room.

    -We book a Disney campsite for 1 night at the beginning of our stay. We don't camp there, it's just for day use. For $70, this gives us 10 magic bands, free parking for all on the days flanking our reservation, and access to the 60 day fp booking window. See the "Throwaway Room" thread for advice on this.

    -This year we are ordering our groceries from the Walmart Superstore 2 minutes from our villa. We will order online and pick it up on our way to check-in. We will make our own breakfasts at the villa, pack picnic lunches and our own waterbottles for Disney, and eat out 1 meal a day. This saves us roughly $700-$1000 in restaurant food / beverage costs for the 10 of us.

    -We are a 24 hour drive from Disney, but we drive instead of fly every time. Even with seat sales, it's thousands of dollars for all of us to fly, verses a couple hundred bucks worth of gas. This allows us to have our own vehicles instead of having to rent one down there.

    -We spend only 3-4 days at Disney and the rest of the week is spent going to the beach, lounging by the pool, etc. Saves money on tickets and give everyone some downtime.

    Hope that was helpful for you! Have a great trip:)
     
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  13. tinkerjo

    tinkerjo Crazy Disney nut

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    We almost always have large parties.
    1. Let the older kids off by themselves a little if you trust them and they know their way around. It will help bonding, foster their independence, and give you a chance to take the younger ones on rides they enjoy. ( 11 is kinda young IMO but it depends on the 13yo)
    2. Use child swap if your youngest is too small for some rides
    3. Eat in the park as little as possible. We make every kid carry their own string backpack with drinks, snacks, etc. saves tons of money
    4. Buy matching Disney T-shirts for everyone. DH thinks these are stupid and won’t participate but I love seeing families with matching t shirts
     
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  14. Retroecho

    Retroecho circle skirts & pixie dust

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    We are very free range but for whatever reason our big boys are totally not interested in going off by themselves. Maybe they just really like me? Pahahaha. But for the last two or three years we’ve offered them time to go walk around and they just won’t. But my oldest did walk around with a friend last year during our Princess 1/2 trip.
     
  15. Retroecho

    Retroecho circle skirts & pixie dust

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    So our stay at Summer Bay Resort over in Clermont is half way over and we really love it. We are using my parents timeshare so it only cost us the exchange fee. Overall I really love having more space (2 bedrooms!!) and the pools are very nice. I miss the Disney bubble for sure, but the space and price is unbelievable. And honestly, while a few miles further ubering feels so much fast than being on the bus (although they do offer a bus here). One thing I also miss is mousekeeping. I hate feeling like I have to make beds and clean. But again, very small price to pay for the bonuses. And the prices on site for things like alcohol and coffee are fantastic. Enjoying my iced coffee for around $2 and a shot of rumchata for around $4 makes for cheap drink by the pool.
     
  16. Retroecho

    Retroecho circle skirts & pixie dust

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    I know credit cards aren’t for everyone, but we got the southwest card and pay it off every month. This year it only cost $66 to fly the six of us from VA!
     
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  17. QueenIsabella

    QueenIsabella DIS Veteran

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    Most places have "trash and tidy" every few days. I know DVC does this on Day 4, and when we were in Myrtle Beach, our condo also took the trash every couple days. I don't do any real cleaning--run dishes in the dishwasher, maybe doa load of laundry here and there. DH actually prefers NOT to have housekeeping--he'd rather not have people coming in our room.
     
  18. mamaofsix

    mamaofsix Mouseketeer

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    The joys of being Canadian - not nearly the cheap flight deals that you get in the states! What a great deal for you, though :)
     
  19. rideswithchrist

    rideswithchrist DIS Veteran

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    Amazing price on the Southwest flight !
    We are also a family of 6 and we camp often, so we will be staying at Fort Wilderness...since it is a tent/popup site we paid around $80 per night, bought our tickets from Undercover Tourist (did not get hoppers since we stick to one park per day) and will be packing in breakfast and lunch and eating dinners in park.

    I would consider staying off site, but it would take some mega convincing to get my hubby on board. He stayed off site once as a kid and they didn't like it.
     
  20. Retroecho

    Retroecho circle skirts & pixie dust

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    To be honest I was totally against staying off site but did it because my parents offered their timeshare and it was an unbelievable deal. Now I am pro staying off site. For the savings alone was just amazing. But also I found I much prefer Uber over the busses.
     
  21. Retroecho

    Retroecho circle skirts & pixie dust

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    So we are done with stay number theee of the trip and are spending our last night in two rooms at all star music. My love affair of staying on site is officially over. Yea Disney is awesome and if we could afford dvc or even renting points I’d consider it but I can’t even begin to compare double tree or summer bay to all star music.
     

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