Please help! Split Trip with 2 adults, 4 kids - Logistical NIGHTMARE!

TwinMommyDec05

Earning My Ears
Joined
Nov 11, 2009
Hi everyone,

So I am doing a split trip with husband and 4 daughters! (Yeah, lol. Youngest is 13). They want to do 4 days at Disney and 3 days at Universal. Naturally, this means we are missing EVERY economy of scale with park tickets. Sigh. So I am trying to cut some costs somewhere else.

I wanted to stay at Portofino or Royal Pacific for the universal part of the trip because of the whole line pass thing but not married to the idea if everyone thinks it is more of a gimmick. That means I am doing 2 rooms at both Disney and Universal since we clearly don't fit in a standard room.

Would I be better off splitting the difference and staying at one of the kinda on Disney property hotels at downtown Disney and just driving?

I tried calling a few to inquire about suites...was offered The Presidential Suite at $7k per night. Arent there any DVC type suites anywhere else? (DVC is sold out, tried that first).

HOW DO BIG FAMILIES DO THIS???
 

AntimonyER

Mouseketeer
Joined
May 4, 2016
We have similar issues when we do disney, as my Mother-in-law always comes with us which makes 6. (Universal she doesn't care for, so we can fit our 5 into a normal room there).

Have you considered staying off property in a rental house or townhome? We have stayed in Windsor Hills a few times, and i feel its quicker to all the disney parks save magic kingdom compared to staying on property, and is only a short drive (20 min depending on traffic) to universal. You would have PLENTY of room, for a VERY reasonable price. You could even prepare a few meals which will also reduce your costs(we do most breakfasts at the rental, plus a couple crockpot meals as we get tired of eating out every meal)

If that doesn't appeal, a 3 day pass is very similar in price to the lowest level annual pass. This will give you Annual passholder rates at the hotels you are considering, which since you need two rooms, could save you hundreds a night. Just make sure the dates you are going aren't subject to blackout dates for that pass. (Even a higher level pass will probably save you money if thats the case).
 
  • mjhtvchick

    Universal Fan-atic
    Joined
    Apr 10, 2012
    Hi everyone,

    So I am doing a split trip with husband and 4 daughters! (Yeah, lol. Youngest is 13). They want to do 4 days at Disney and 3 days at Universal. Naturally, this means we are missing EVERY economy of scale with park tickets. Sigh. So I am trying to cut some costs somewhere else.

    I wanted to stay at Portofino or Royal Pacific for the universal part of the trip because of the whole line pass thing but not married to the idea if everyone thinks it is more of a gimmick. That means I am doing 2 rooms at both Disney and Universal since we clearly don't fit in a standard room.

    Would I be better off splitting the difference and staying at one of the kinda on Disney property hotels at downtown Disney and just driving?

    I tried calling a few to inquire about suites...was offered The Presidential Suite at $7k per night. Arent there any DVC type suites anywhere else? (DVC is sold out, tried that first).

    HOW DO BIG FAMILIES DO THIS???

    Honestly, I would advise you to stay off-site at a vacation home - lots of space, nice amenities and probably half (if not less) the cost of what you are going to pay on-site at either Disney or Universal. I have stayed at several lovely homes in some very nice communities (see my signature below) and that is only scratching the surface of what is available.
     

    TwinMommyDec05

    Earning My Ears
    Joined
    Nov 11, 2009
    June
    We have similar issues when we do disney, as my Mother-in-law always comes with us which makes 6. (Universal she doesn't care for, so we can fit our 5 into a normal room there).

    Have you considered staying off property in a rental house or townhome? We have stayed in Windsor Hills a few times, and i feel its quicker to all the disney parks save magic kingdom compared to staying on property, and is only a short drive (20 min depending on traffic) to universal. You would have PLENTY of room, for a VERY reasonable price. You could even prepare a few meals which will also reduce your costs(we do most breakfasts at the rental, plus a couple crockpot meals as we get tired of eating out every meal)

    If that doesn't appeal, a 3 day pass is very similar in price to the lowest level annual pass. This will give you Annual passholder rates at the hotels you are considering, which since you need two rooms, could save you hundreds a night. Just make sure the dates you are going aren't subject to blackout dates for that pass. (Even a higher level pass will probably save you money if thats the case).
    We have similar issues when we do disney, as my Mother-in-law always comes with us which makes 6. (Universal she doesn't care for, so we can fit our 5 into a normal room there).

    Have you considered staying off property in a rental house or townhome? We have stayed in Windsor Hills a few times, and i feel its quicker to all the disney parks save magic kingdom compared to staying on property, and is only a short drive (20 min depending on traffic) to universal. You would have PLENTY of room, for a VERY reasonable price. You could even prepare a few meals which will also reduce your costs(we do most breakfasts at the rental, plus a couple crockpot meals as we get tired of eating out every meal)

    If that doesn't appeal, a 3 day pass is very similar in price to the lowest level annual pass. This will give you Annual passholder rates at the hotels you are considering, which since you need two rooms, could save you hundreds a night. Just make sure the dates you are going aren't subject to blackout dates for that pass. (Even a higher level pass will probably save you money if thats the case).

    But you can't do the advance fast pass plus reservations if you stay off site, right? Did you find that really challenging for the popular rides?
     

    disneywithfive

    Mouseketeer
    Joined
    May 9, 2006
    Answers will vary depending on the time of year you are going and if you will have your own transportation or not.
     

    bchbetha

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Jan 27, 2016
    The Universal hotel is worth the splurge. What would the "gimmick" be? Staying for 1 night gets you 2 days of unlimited express passes for everyone legitimately in the room(s). Unlimited Express Passes are amazing.
    For Disney, anyone can book fast passes at 30 days. 60 days for onsite and some offsite options. Might not get everything if you only have the 30 day window but it won't be dire.
     
  • AntimonyER

    Mouseketeer
    Joined
    May 4, 2016
    June




    But you can't do the advance fast pass plus reservations if you stay off site, right? Did you find that really challenging for the popular rides?
    We went a couple years ago, and here is what we did: We booked a tent only campsite in ft. wilderness for a night early in our trip, which gave us 60 day FP booking on a rolling basis each day (I am not sure if this still works, it was a couple years ago and I know there have been FP changes since then) This gave us free parking for two days, free magic bands, and EMM for those two days as well. We even used the campsite to grill out that night, but I know some people didn't even go to theirs, it was a true throwaway reservation. Again a lot has changed so this may not work anymore. We still couldn't get FP for SDMT or Frozen ride, which were the two newest at the time, but for SDMT we did a pre-park opening ADR at Be Our Guest, ate quickly, and were able to get two quick rides on SDMT before the rope drop crowds got there. But we got FP for the most of the rest, and we rope dropped every day to hit the rest of the headliners early. (left the condo 1-1:15 hr before park opening every day, 15 minutes to park, 15 minutes through security/transportation, and 30 minutes waiting for rope drop.)
     

    bumbershoot

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Mar 5, 2007
    I wanted to stay at Portofino or Royal Pacific for the universal part of the trip because of the whole line pass thing but not married to the idea if everyone thinks it is more of a gimmick.
    ?
    Every post about included unlimited express pass, including in the deluxe hotel sticky threads, says that it’s wonderful and should be used. Those who have experienced it always recommend it. It’s not a gimmick. It’s terrific.

    That said, if you have to get two rooms, the math changes. Do the math.

    But you can't do the advance fast pass plus reservations if you stay off site, right? Did you find that really challenging for the popular rides?
    It’s 30 days instead of 60 for Disney’s FP+ when staying offsite.
     

    Sue M

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    May 27, 2009
    The Universal Express Pass at Universal is amazing. Not a gimmick. Probably the cheapest would be 2 standard rooms at Royal Pacific.

    At wdw, the Disney Springs resorts now get the 60 day fast pass booking window. And their park shuttles are very good, running every 30 min continuously.

    We did a WDW/Universal split 4 yrs ago and used a town car service to transport us from our Universal hotel to WDW hotel on moving day. They have various size vehicles. Many on this board recommend Tony Hinds and he has a Van.
     

    PHXscuba

    Mouseketeer since birth!
    Joined
    Jul 7, 2008
    If you do 2 connecting rooms at Royal Pacific, consider one Universal Annual Pass. Staying 2 nights with 2 rooms made it come out way ahead for me.

    We flew in and stayed in a cheapish airport hotel the first night, then Ubered to RPR early the next morning. Checked in, dumped our luggage, then started park day 1 with the Express Pass benefits. So you could do 2 nights hotel to get 3 park days. Or, consider if one night with 2 park days using Express Pass could be enough time -- cutting out one day of food/hotel could save a lot.

    PHXscuba
     
  • TwinMommyDec05

    Earning My Ears
    Joined
    Nov 11, 2009
    Do you need to have one annual pass PER ROOM or can I buy one annual pass and book the two adjoining rooms?
     

    TwinMommyDec05

    Earning My Ears
    Joined
    Nov 11, 2009
    If you do 2 connecting rooms at Royal Pacific, consider one Universal Annual Pass. Staying 2 nights with 2 rooms made it come out way ahead for me.

    We flew in and stayed in a cheapish airport hotel the first night, then Ubered to RPR early the next morning. Checked in, dumped our luggage, then started park day 1 with the Express Pass benefits. So you could do 2 nights hotel to get 3 park days. Or, consider if one night with 2 park days using Express Pass could be enough time -- cutting out one day of food/hotel could save a lot.

    PHXscuba
    Do you need to have one annual pass PER ROOM or can I buy one annual pass and book the two adjoining rooms?
     

    damo

    Proud Redhead
    Joined
    Jan 1, 2001
    Do you need to have one annual pass PER ROOM or can I buy one annual pass and book the two adjoining rooms?
    One pass will do if you have your kids in the adjoining room.

    Unlimited express pass is the furthest thing from a gimmick. If you could have the fastpasses at WDW and use them at whatever ride you wanted and whenever you wanted and have it included in the price of the room, would you say that is a gimmick?
     

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