DIS Exclusive BSM 10/23-10/28/16 Review


Apr 5, 2016
I'm going to do a slightly different review. I won't focus on a day-by-day itinerary but more on my impressions. I will mention a few experiences but only where it helps me explain my feelings.

Disclaimer: each ABD trip is unique. Just because we did something, it doesn't guarantee you'll get to experience it. But you may do some things we didn't so it all works out in the end.

First, a little about me. I'm well past 50, have a DW and DD of 11 (youngest if our group) at the time of the trip. We are Disneyland AP holders, DVC members and we're the only locals on our trip. I'm somewhat of a nerd so I don't normally get along well with others.

Our guides. We had Summer-Rose and Michael. Both were simply awesome. They're friendly, patient, knowledgeable (I'm talking more than Michael Bowling knowledgeable) and everything I'd expect out of a Disney host. When they're not doing ABD, they both are VIP hosts at Disneyland (those you see in the red/blue plaid vests). Michael was even a finalist for this year's Disneyland Ambassador (out of 23k applicants - I think that's the number he mentioned). Summer-Rose has also made it to the panel stage earlier. Grade: A+

Our group. There were about 30 of us (it really never seemed like a lot of people). When necessary they split us into 2 groups (Mickey and Minnie groups). There were John and Kevin from TheDIS. I can't say enough good things about them. They are both wonderful people. If you're lucky enough to get them, count your lucky stars. In fact, all the people that I've met from TheDIS are great. We had 3 solo travelers, a mother-daughter pair, a few couples, and 2 other families of 4. John and Kevin were joined by OKW Lover and Webmaster Kathy (I really talked her and OKW Lover's ears off - poor things). We even had Summe-Rose's parents on our trip. Now what really surprised me was about half the group had done BSM before. Some were on BSM double digit times. One couple was like us, trying ABD for the first time to see if we'd do it again (side note: the wife of this couple looked like she was a famous actress and her husband was really funny). One couple did Disney Bounding and her outfits were unreal cool. Like I said earlier, I'm not great around people but I enjoyed my time with everyone on the trip. There's something to be said about our mutual love of Disney playing a part in that. If you won't be bring children with you, don't worry, all the kids were very well behaved (the children of the Seattle and NJ parents showed what good parents they are). The tables for meals are of varying sizes so we ended up eating with different people each time.

Getting to Hollywood: being locals we dropped our car at the Grand Californian (valet parking included) and were promptly picked up in an SUV limo. Driver was very friendly. 2 other families were also picked up there as well. We said hi to the Seattle family (they flew in earlier to visit local universities - I hope they pick my alma mater ;)) since we noticed the bag tags. Everything was smooth.

Adventure: there were many bucket list items checked off for me. Two non-planned surprises were seeing John Williams and actually talking with Dave Smith (creator of the Disney Archives who just happened to be where we were). Kevin also had a surprise guest for us too.

Many ask is ABD worth it. ABD is not inexpensive. In fact, it's easy to say it's quite costly from a per day perspective. We picked BSM because it was the most inexpensive of all ABD trips. Well after this trip I can easily say it's worth every penny. Being a DIS exclusive made it even more so but if your guides are anything like ours were, it won't matter. If you can afford it and you're on the fence, do it. Email kevin@dreamsunlimitedtravel.com because he's a great TA.

If you have any questions, I'll try to answer the best that I can.


Hilary S
Sep 5, 2008
I still haven't gotten around to finishing my report of BSM in June, but had the same thoughts as you. Even as CA natives who are frequent DL visitors it was well worth it. We learned many new things and had unbelievable experiences. I 100% agree with you that the shared love of Disney and Disney history makes the BSM trip especially cohesive.



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