How do you prefer to book your WDW vacation?

Discussion in 'Canadian Trip Planning & Community Board' started by Etch, Jan 11, 2018.

  1. Etch

    Etch Earning My Ears

    Joined:
    Jan 10, 2018
    Messages:
    18
    Took our first trip to WDW in February 2017 and plan to return in late November/early December 2018.

    Last time I booked the following way for 2 adults and 2 kids (5,9)
    Booked everything in early November 2016
    Tickets: Bought on the Disney Website with the 25% off Canadian Discount
    Flight and Hotel: Booked together on Westjet Vacation Site.
    Flight was direct to Orlando from Kitchener (Westjet no longer offers this flight)
    Booked a standard room at AKL (7 nights with 25% off room deal) but got lucky and was upgraded to Savannah View Room when we arrived without asking
    Price seems really good after following what a similar trip would cost all though 2017

    What sites do you use to book or do you use an agent? Do you book flight and hotel separately? How far ahead do you usually book?

    We are in the Kitchener/Waterloo area and my only plan so far is to once again purchase the tickets from Disney with the 20% off deal for Canadians they are currently offering.
     
    starvenger likes this.
  2. isabellea

    isabellea Combining beach and Disney!

    Joined:
    Jan 22, 2014
    Messages:
    1,336
    I do everything myself. I usually book directly with WDW but I also booked on Orbitz for an additional 20% a few years ago or a travel agency specialized in Disney that had an exclusive price. I always buy my tickets from Undercover Tourists when there’s no Canadian exclusive prices or with airmiles. We drive so no flight to book.
     
    Etch and starvenger like this.
  3. Avatar

    Advertisement


  4. 22Tink

    22Tink DIS Veteran

    Joined:
    Apr 25, 2015
    Messages:
    2,802
    I book everything myself, no TA.
    *Our first trip back in '07 we stayed offsite so I only purchased the tickets through Disney, flights and hotel were separate. Booked about 3 months out.
    *In 2015 I booked a Free Dining package directly through Disney and we flew on Avion points. Booked about 7 months out.
    * For our upcoming trip we're flying on Avion points again and I booked our resort and purchased the Can resident tickets through Disney. Booked 4 months out.
     
    Etch and starvenger like this.
  5. Donald - my hero

    Donald - my hero <font color=blue>Aww yes. The dreaded "mouse hand"

    Joined:
    Jun 11, 2006
    Messages:
    10,184
    The Duck is a complete control freak and as such I do everything online, myself! I often use Expedia to book our flights so i can snag extra Airmiles along with the loyalty points with whichever airline is cheapest. (side note:we got caught short with the KW airport last year: booked our flights and then our non-refundable DVC rental and about 3 weeks later Westjet changed the flights to a different day and weren't flying until 2 weeks after we left. They never let us know, I only found out thru an email from CHYM and Expedia helped me fix it up no prob, even upgrading us to whatever their fancy-pants service is called for free!)

    I tend to book as soon as I've decided we are going(sometimes that means more than a year!) and then follow the discount threads in the Resort forum like a hawk and when a discount drops I will change the reservation to apply it. This past year we were staying for close to 3 weeks and a DVC rental made more sense and i did that as soon as i could.

    I have either redeemed Airmiles for tickets or purchased them at CAA so i don't have the foreign exchange rate slapped on as well as the exchange rate. A few times we have booked a package that includes the tickets.

    2 years ago we decided on the spur of the moment we needed to get away and I snagged a pretty sweet deal thru Expedia for a week at the Dolphin that included RT airfare for under $2,000 all in. We don't spend everyday in the parks so this was perfect for us.
     
    Etch and starvenger like this.
  6. mort1331

    mort1331 DIS Veteran

    Joined:
    Jul 15, 2012
    Messages:
    1,921
    So I book everything myself. We are DVC so that is where we get our rooms, most times. This Feb I am doing a super last minute trip for me, booked 3 weeks out. So no DVC, but booked into POP direct with Disney.
    But as the Duck does, if your looking at AKL again, renting with a trusted DVC person could save you thousands of dollars. hint hint,,,lol
     
    Etch and Donald - my hero like this.
  7. hdrolfe

    hdrolfe Mouseketeer

    Joined:
    Feb 16, 2014
    Messages:
    456
    I have booked through Orbitz with a discount and also through a specialized Disney agency. I normally do not get a package but purchase tickets separately, though one of my trips was tickets and room through an agency. I hate paying full price for anything.

    For flights, I normally book through Airmiles if I have them or through the carrier directly. I did once through expedia (I think) but I didn't like that I couldn't just call the airline myself.
     
    Etch likes this.
  8. Etch

    Etch Earning My Ears

    Joined:
    Jan 10, 2018
    Messages:
    18
    Thanks to you Disney veterans for the great info! Keep it coming!

    We loved AKL but I think we'd like to experience a different resort this time. I've looked into the DVC rentals a little bit but have yet to fully research the finer details.
     
  9. starvenger

    starvenger DIS Veteran

    Joined:
    Apr 8, 2015
    Messages:
    931
    The only thing I use a TA for is to book cruises, as they sometimes get discounts and OBC unavailable to us mere mortals.

    But I'm one of those people that will use every resource available to try and do bookings wherever I go. For Orlando specifically, since we're offsite people, I've booked places using airbnb, expedia and via a friend's timeshare. Flights I've either booked directly with the airline or using my MBNA points. Car Rentals were through Costco, which incidentally has pretty good prices for one ways to Port Canaveral (we did WDW + DCL one year).
     
  10. isabellea

    isabellea Combining beach and Disney!

    Joined:
    Jan 22, 2014
    Messages:
    1,336
    I would love to rent some DVC points to stay Deluxe next December but I cannot commit 100% yet since I want to pay cash for that vacation. But one day we will stay at AKL!!!
     
  11. momof2gr8kids

    momof2gr8kids DIS Veteran

    Joined:
    Nov 17, 2009
    Messages:
    1,366
    I like to do everything myself. Last trip I used a TA just to book a room as they had special discounts. One trip I booked myself, then had it transferred to a travel agent I knew at Marlin Travel just so I could then use AM to pay off part of my trip. But I like to be in control of it. I'm on these boards almost daily (It's my mental health break! Ha!), so I usually know what discounts are coming up when and I'm ready to pounce when they are first announced. And I change my mind a kazillion times, so I wouldn't subject any travel agent to my craziness! lol

    And Mort...mental note for next time! lol I really kick myself for not taking the plunge and purchasing some of those DVC contracts I was eyeing up five or so years ago when dollar was at par and the prices were so much lower. Ah well.
     
    mort1331 likes this.
  12. mort1331

    mort1331 DIS Veteran

    Joined:
    Jul 15, 2012
    Messages:
    1,921
    And Mort...mental note for next time! lol I really kick myself for not taking the plunge and purchasing some of those DVC contracts I was eyeing up five or so years ago when dollar was at par and the prices were so much lower. Ah well.[/QUOTE]

    Yup that is when we bought 2 contracts. Very happy with that now, but you never know.
     
  13. mort1331

    mort1331 DIS Veteran

    Joined:
    Jul 15, 2012
    Messages:
    1,921
    Just want to mention as well. If booking with Disney, keep checking to see if the rates go down. I just changed my Room only from Prefer to Stand and saved 100us. Std was not available when I first booked, but one week later it showed up. For us its just a room we have to walk 3 mins longer too, no biggy.
     
  14. Aladora

    Aladora DIS Veteran

    Joined:
    Aug 22, 2011
    Messages:
    3,313
    We're heading back to AKL in August, renting DVC points for the second time at this resort. Wish I had know that there was a Canadian who was willing to rent points, I would have contacted you first! I'll make a note to self to pm you first next time we are looking at doing this again. :)

    To answer the OP, we went to a travel agent the first time but I've booked everything myself for the rest of our trips. I'm pretty good at finding the best price and enjoy the planning stages.
     
    Donald - my hero likes this.
  15. mort1331

    mort1331 DIS Veteran

    Joined:
    Jul 15, 2012
    Messages:
    1,921
    If your heading in Aug, you still have time. Check out the Rent/Trade boards here under DVC. Some great people there to rent from. I dont know if I have enough right now to rent. Good luck.
     
  16. Etch

    Etch Earning My Ears

    Joined:
    Jan 10, 2018
    Messages:
    18
    I also prefer to plan everything myself as this is part of the fun for me. I assumed most on this board would feel the same.

    I've been checking into the DVC rentals and that really does seem to be the way to go. I've always believed in "if it's too good to be true" but in this case the savings seem to be legit and you are not giving up much of anything versus booking through Disney at the same resorts. I'm pretty sure i'll be trying this out for our late fall trip.

    Thanks for the tips everyone!
     
  17. Aladora

    Aladora DIS Veteran

    Joined:
    Aug 22, 2011
    Messages:
    3,313
    How strange, I could have sworn that I replied to this already!

    I've already found someone from this site to rent points from, what I was saying in my pp was that I would have preferred to rent from a Canadian if possible and that I'll remember to post here on the Canadian part of the site next time we want to rent point. Keep the $ in the family, as it were. (We're all Canadians so we are all family, right?) :)
     
    Donald - my hero likes this.
  18. isabellea

    isabellea Combining beach and Disney!

    Joined:
    Jan 22, 2014
    Messages:
    1,336
    I agree that it's nice to 'know' someone from this thread that rents points. Anyone knows if we can rent points for Hilton Head for a few nights?!? We're thinking of going there this summer instead of our usual FL beach vacation and it would be nice to have a little touch of Disney.
     

Share This Page