How do you organize your vacation plan?

Discussion in 'Disneyland (California)' started by AuntieKels, Aug 1, 2018.

  1. AuntieKels

    AuntieKels Mouseketeer

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    What does your Disneyland vacation schedule/calendar/plan actually look like?

    Do you use Excel? Word? a journal? Do you break things up by day or activity?

    I'm curious to see how other people organize their plans to get some ideas for myself. I always get anxious if I haven't assessed our vacations to be sure we're not missing anything and we're utilizing our time the best way possible. :teacher::surfweb:

    Pictures are welcome! Thanks!
     
  2. cmpeter

    cmpeter DIS Veteran

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    Excel. One tab with an overall schedule for the entire day and then individual daily tabs with more details for each day. I love having them as reference documents after the vacation.
     
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  4. gerilyne

    gerilyne DIS Veteran

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    I use excel with a column for each day and a row for times in the park. I try to keep the schedule part all on one tab and then the other tabs contain information I might need for planning. It works for me anyway.
     
  5. BrianL

    BrianL Doom Buggy Driver

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    I use an Excel template as well. It just has blocks for certain days, since I don't plan to the minute. There is also a block of show times (since they are usually the same daily) and park hours by day. I print it out on a wallet-sized card with three blocks per side. It becomes a fold-out if necessary. I do a cheap lamination with some packing tape and keep it with me.
     
  6. Redbudlover

    Redbudlover DIS Veteran

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    I start my plan by listing days across the top of a spreadsheet, then entering which parks have the lowest crowd level and which is second crowd level. that gives me a chance to decide which days to get the overall lowest levels in the trip ( ie. MK's lowest level is often not the lowest level for any day so i have to work with the day it is the lowest for MK) Once I have decided which parks which days, I can make my ADRs, according to which park I am in on any given day to avoid running all over the place. I plan for a resort day sometime in the middle of the trip and I plan for early days or late days depending again on what comes next trying not to stay past 10 pm on days I have to rope drop the next day. I used to plan around hard to get ADRs, but don't anymore. I go often enough if I can't get an ADR one trip I can get it another. If there are parties I plan a leisurely morning with a special breakfast at my resort, then head out around noon, planning to stay until the very end of the party.

    I get all this done before the 60 day FP opening and then get my FPs. I used my experience app then as my in park planner. Again I have gone enough to know how best I like to make my way around a park, so only need the app. I have tried other plans upon occasion and then printed out a touring plan, but that is rare.
     
  7. Dizzy4DL

    Dizzy4DL Happiest when I have a countdown

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    I use the calendar on my iPhone for the big things such as flights, hotel, park hours, etc at the beginning of planning. I eventually write it all out on paper day to day, including the smaller things such as anticipated crowd levels, wake up times, and even shower schedules for the hotel room ;).
    I find that once I've done that, I forget very little and only use the paper as an occasional reference during the later planning phase. As we get closer, I add more to my phone, including setting reminder alarms for the truly important things. I keep the paper(s) in the hotel room in case something happens with my phone.

    I highly recommend making a top ten "must do/eat" list and doing that all on your first park day. I started doing that after having 2 trips in a row where I came down with an illness on my second or third day and had to stay in the room. Whomever said being sick at Disney is better than being sick at home has NEVER been sick at Disney. :sad2:
     
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  8. DisneyMountainWoman

    DisneyMountainWoman Mouseketeer

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    I use word, I have each day a seperate sheet. Then I print them out into a small binder. I also use google calendar to remind me important dates like when I can book restaurants, etc..
     
  9. 3monkeys4me

    3monkeys4me Mouseketeer

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    I keep it simple these days. I just use the notes app on my macbook since it syncs with my phone and I can easily text it to my older kids and husband so they can look everything over an add any input.

    I do pretty much the same thing, if is a Disney vacation or non Disney vacation. I just list the days we are traveling by date in bold. For a Disney vacation I put the park we are starting in and what time it is opening at, then list ride order for the first 2-3 rides plus any must do rides (maybe something that was down the last visit or if someone specifically requested something) and then add any Dining reservations or shows we are planning. Other than that we go with the flow. A non Disney vacation pretty much looks the same, Only I just put anything set in stone with the times and then list other information like places to visit if we end up with extra time or places to eat the look interesting.

    Sometimes I used the grid feature, but generally I just leave it in list form, using bold to separate the dates and bullets to highlight anything important to remember. I also have a folder in my gmail box where I put all receipts and reservation confirmations for that particular trip. So we have two vacations coming up in the next 8 months. So I have 2 folders and that is where I put all the flight and hotel reservations along with any prepaid activity confirmation information just so it is all in one place.
     
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  10. corrie563

    corrie563 Mouseketeer

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    I use the calendar in my iphone, and set alerts for things that are time sensitive. At the end of every day I write down in a travel journal what we actually did to use for a trip report and to keep as a document of our trip.
     
  11. smartlabelprint

    smartlabelprint DIS Veteran

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    I used to use excel. Last trip I drafted on a paper notebook. Then I made lists in the reminders app on iphone. Lists of restaurants and rides.

    I made grocery lists in notes.
     
  12. Bluewild79

    Bluewild79 Mouseketeer

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    Is there any way you could share a screenshot of you planner for one of your trips?

    We're going at the end of this month and I need to transfer all of my paper notes onto my Google Drive somehow and I'd LOVE some inspiration!
     
  13. BrianL

    BrianL Doom Buggy Driver

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    I think I have some examples on my Google Drive. I can set up a folder to share it. I'll PM you.
     
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  14. chickapin parterre

    chickapin parterre DIS Veteran

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    note cards....the 3x5 size cards....they are the only ones that fit in my pocket in a boring meeting. Pull them out, adjust the wait times, pencil in photo ops.....making the magic last a lot longer.
     
  15. RedHotMama

    RedHotMama Mouseketeer

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    I use Google docs (like a word document, but accessed online). I create a table for each day and a table of contents at the top of the doc that links to each day.
    Here's a link to our last trip's plan.
    https://docs.google.com/document/d/14htzNJoX6ZflZNS2XCUcKOTLZJgfH2CwrRa5avQcApo/edit?usp=drivesdk
    I am a crazy over-planner. I used Touring Plans and also monitored the Disneyland app so I had a good idea of wait times and could guess pretty accurately what we would be doing at what times. Even with all this planning, we stayed pretty chill and flexible during the trip. It just helped me to know what to expect and how to prioritize.
     
  16. ParkHopper1

    ParkHopper1 DIS Veteran

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    I do not detail plan...creates too much stress trying to stick to a rigid plan. I just set some goals of what we wanna accomplish each day and go with the flow adapting to real time conditions. To easy to waste too much time trying to execute a plan doing an item when time could be uses more efficiently doing something else at that moment.
     
  17. Cal-Pie

    Cal-Pie I admit that in the past I've been a nasty

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    This thread has made me realize that I'm actually a massive slacker.
     
  18. RedHotMama

    RedHotMama Mouseketeer

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    :rotfl2:
     
  19. StarlitNight05

    StarlitNight05 DIS Veteran

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    Same here! And also confirms to me that if I can't even do this, then I'd be a hot mess at WDW.
     
  20. maleficent55

    maleficent55 Mouseketeer

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    I use the notes app on my iPhone

    It basically lives there and each trip I modify dates/days and little details
     
  21. chickapin parterre

    chickapin parterre DIS Veteran

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    .....and that you don't know the secrets of having magic outside of Disneyland.....my best internet laugh of the day.....may I suggest 3x5 note cards!!!
     
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