Return to the Magic- Our Pre Trip Report

BudgieMama

DIS Veteran
Joined
Sep 15, 2013
Well, this is exciting!

For those of you who were with me for my first trip last year, you may remember that my husband insisted our visit to Walt Disney World would be a "once in a lifetime" type affair...

Now, on the flight home last August, he admitted he'd like to go back... and we agreed on a return trip in August 2018 (after the new Avatar stuff has opened and had time to work out the bugs!). Somewhere along the line, we ended up inviting both our mothers to go with us, and so that's the plan. In the meantime, to tide me over until then, he agreed I could celebrate my 30th Birthday (September this year) at Disneyland Paris.

I spent a lot of time pricing things up and thinking about the various options, but nothing really seemed to look good enough to convince me to book... (I should add, I work in a school, so even though we don't have kids, school holidays are our time frame)... on top of that, I started to get homesick... really homesick! I couldn't bear the thought that it would be another 3 and a half years until we could visit WDW again. I suggested we ditch plans for Paris in favour of two weeks at WDW in August 2016... and by some miracle, my husband agreed! YIPEEE! His one caveat was that it would depend on the deals that came out for 2016 and whether they were decent.

So, the deals came out and after being 100% certain we wanted to return Saratoga Springs (which we loved), the deal wasn't quite as cheap as we would have wanted. In the end, I was given the choice: 10 days at SSR or 14 days at Coronado Springs... When it was put like that, the choice was simple, and so we have booked two weeks at Coronado Springs from August 15th 2016!

The timing of the trip is almost perfect: we arrive at WDW the day after our 6th wedding anniversary, and leave just 3 days before my birthday, so will legitimately be celebrating both when we are there.

Anyway, after all the waffling, the important thing is we're going back, we can stay for 2 weeks this time and I'm so excited!

I'm starting my PTR a little early, perhaps, but I found last time it was a good place to keep my various brain dumps about our trip together! Welcome along! :earsboy:
 

micksn

DIS Veteran
Joined
Nov 23, 2010
Great news that you've booked and 2 weeks this time! My DH said we could have our "trip of a lifetime" in 2008 - We've now been 4 times :rotfl2:Looked at the deals yesterday and thought they were good, particularly the inclusion of Memory Maker, but oh dear still so expensive with flights in August :sad1: Coronado Springs looks like a good choice I've always been tempted with it I'm sure you will have a great time! Did you upgrade to Dining plan or are you going with quick service? We are also looking to go in 2018 to celebrate my 50th and our silver weddingpixiedust: Not sure if I can wait till then though :tink:
 

BudgieMama

DIS Veteran
Joined
Sep 15, 2013
We didn't upgrade- we enjoyed the DDP last year, but we fancy a more laid back time this time (and less over-eating!). We'll probably do a couple of table meals and maybe the Wishes Dessert party out of pocket.

I'm a little scared about the flights- we were very lucky with price last year, but who knows? Fingers crossed we get something good... and we did save nearly £1k by not staying at SSR so that can go towards the flights!
 
  • BudgieMama

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Sep 15, 2013
    The All Important Details

    Who? Me (Clare) and my DH.

    What? Our Second Visit to WDW... this time for two weeks!
    (We stayed just one week last year!)

    Where? Coronado Springs (standard room)

    When? Originally we booked for 15th August - 29th August, but to fit flights we are now going 14th-28th August, which means arriving on our 6th Wedding Anniversary! WOO HOO!
    We depart 4 days before my 31st birthday,
    so double celebrations going on during this trip!

    With free quick service dining, free memory maker and a $200 gift card. Very nice!
    We did DDP last year, and loved it, but we ate too much food. Even when we had the odd QS meal, we found them a bit too big, so having 4 QS credits per day between us is ideal. We can share some meals and make better use of our snacks. We had loads of snack and QS credits left last time. We WILL use them this time!

    We debated paying the extra £350 to upgrade us to the DDP, but without feeling the need to make so many ADRs, we can be a bit more flexible with what we do. I think we'll book 3/4 meals to pay out of pocket (one as an anniversary meal, one as a birthday meal and a couple just because!), and if we can get one, I'd love a reservation for the Wishes Dessert Party. We both want to return to Tusker House, so that's likely to be one we go for! :)

    Flights now booked with BA- direct both ways from Gatwick to MCO. Economy both ways, but they'll get us there and have a better hand luggage allowance. :D On the earlier flight out of the LGW and the later flight home which makes me very happy as they are our preferred times! :)
     
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  • bex7583

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Feb 29, 2012
    congratulations that hotel will be great and its always nice to try something new

    good luck with the flights too

    im also stuck with school hols and waiting to see aug flight prices when we need x5 flights they can be a real deal breaker so not brave enough to book today
     

    BudgieMama

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Sep 15, 2013
    @bex7583 - we just paid the deposit, just in case the flights cause problems. If things really won't work, we've only lost £100. Really wanted to get this deal whilst it was including Memory Maker and the $200 gift card :)
     

    LiquidSunshine

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Jun 21, 2013
    @LiquidSunshine - Thanks Jemma! Just noticed your signature! Possible wedding?! Are congratulations in order? :)
    There is talk. We are quite spontaneous, and abroad would be his preferred option. I am undecided on it! :rolleyes: I will keep you updated once I get booked & start my next PTR!

    It's a really good deal this year, mainly because the memory maker is included.

    I am in the same position with flights. Last time we booked the whole package with VH, but I have been putting similar Sept 2015 dates into SkyScanner to give me an idea of prices and they are coming back at approx £350 each! That's flying Dublin to Gatwick to Orlando & back, with Virgin and Aer Lingus.

    If the prices were similar again for next Sept, I would be very pleased! :yay:
     
  • LiquidSunshine

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Jun 21, 2013
    Also meant to add, we are considering Coronado Springs over POFQ. There is a £400 difference between the two for our dates.

    The only problem is that we loved POFQ the last time for its small size and the quiet. Really not sure what to do. :(

    Will be interesting to see what you think of CSR in comparison to SSR!
     

    BudgieMama

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Sep 15, 2013
    Will be interesting to see what you think of CSR in comparison to SSR!
    Sadly, I won't be able to tell you before you need to book. I watched the DIS Unplugged review of CSR, and was surprised with how positive they were about it in general. Pete doesn't mince his words when he doesn't like stuff, and he was really impressed with it. I actually watched it when I saw the price difference between SSR and CSR (nearly £1k), but was thinking "oh, but I don't want to stay at CSR, I've not heard good things about it". But I didn't hear good things about SSR. Lots of US guests complain about walking distances and bus waits, but I suspect they do little of either in their normal lives!!

    I can't quite understand the price difference between CSR and POFQ - CSR has more facilities than either of the PO resorts, because it's the convention centre. Some people seem to have an issue with that, but in my mind, if people are there for a convention, they won't be filling up the pools or the buses to the parks! ;)
     

    LiquidSunshine

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Jun 21, 2013
    No I couldn't understand the price difference as they are 2 moderates.
    Maybe the CSR price reflects the fact it is conference centre and could be busy?

    But you are right, and I was thinking that yesterday, if there is a conference on then they won't be taking up buses etc.

    I have seen the complainants about distances etc, but that isn't too much of an issue. The rooms love nice, even though they are similar to POFQ!

    Think I might end up booking CSR. Then it's just the issue of getting flights! Eek!
     

    bex7583

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Feb 29, 2012
    well it is a very good deal with the gift card and memory maker.the paying the deposit in theory is a good idea but once thats paid it will be in my head we are going i would feel pressured in to buying the flighst at a high price rather than cancelling ( i could never cancel disney)

    we had stayed at POR last time but carribean beach quoting up as cheapest for us at the moment
     

    LiquidSunshine

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Jun 21, 2013
    Hi @bex7583

    CBR is also coming up cheaper compared to POR/POFQ for us. I am wondering is this because POR/POFQ are more popular? I am still debating over POFQ or CSR, but I think I am edging for CSR. :scratchin

    @BudgieMama - had a quick look at the CSR Forum, seems CSR rooms are being redecorated from Jan 15, taking 15-18 months! We could be there for new rooms! :D
     

    ariane37

    Dis veteran
    Joined
    Sep 25, 2012
    Hello Clare! I remember you from last year's Aug. group and I also remember how excited you were about your first trip! :goodvibes So glad you get to go back sooner than you thought. I spent my birthday in WDW last year and DH and I just spent our anniversary there last month; so awesome to be there for special occasions! Make sure you get your "I'm celebrating" buttons :thumbsup2

    And I hope you love CSR. We stayed there last Aug. and thoroughly enjoyed it. Rooms were lovely (and maybe you'll get a refurbed one even!), grounds are beautiful, our DS's loved the pool, DH and I really liked the quiet pool. We also thought the QS food was fine and we all loved the TS restaurant there, Maya Grill. BWV is our absolute favorite resort but CSR is a close 2nd!

    Looking forward to planning along with you :)
     

    ariane37

    Dis veteran
    Joined
    Sep 25, 2012
    Oh also re: some of the previous posts. Since I'm not in the UK I don't know if you're pricing is different, but if I'm understanding correctly you're all saying CSR is coming up cheaper than POFQ/POR? If that's the case, FQ is often a bit more expensive as it's preferred by a number of guests due to it's smaller size. POFQ is often also left out of discounts (at least in the US) b/c Disney never has a problem filling those rooms again, due to the small size. Maybe we Americans are lazier than you guys lol?? We've stayed at FQ twice. It's nice, but prefer CSR despite the size (which we had no issues with).
    CSR is popular, and does fill up with guests. For instance as per a CSR FB group I'm part of, it's full right now or at least was last week! Conventions don't really make it a reason Disney will have a lower price; many guests see conventions as a positive. Like LiquidSunshine said, conventioners don't take up bus space or use the pools :) Guests really only report seeing them at the QS locations early in the morning and in the evening, and also in the bars in the evening. When we were there (and this was only once) we saw them eating lunch once or twice in Pepper Market and strolling around in the evening. You can tell them by their business attire lol. Now some people feel that, seeing others dressed in suits or working on laptops takes away from their vacation experience, and choose not to return to CSR. Otherwise, overall no negative issues with conventions.

    I'm sorry I hijacked your thread Clare!! Won't happen again, I promise :flower3:
     

    BudgieMama

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Sep 15, 2013
    You're welcome to hijack all you like, @ariane37 - the more the merrier! :D

    For last year, the UK deals for all the moderates were pretty similar in prices- it was quite more noticeable for next year when we did our sums (around £300 more expensive). Which isn't awful in Disney terms, but still money I'd rather spend on other things! ;)

    I'm really looking forward to staying at CSR, and to trying lots of QS restaurants- we barely used our QS credits last year. I don't think I used mine anywhere other than the Artist's Palette, so it'll be nice to try some options (and be able to share meals... we ate WAY too much last time!)

    CSR seems much more central than SSR was (not that the transfer times bothered us from there), and I do remember passing the gate to CSR a lot and thinking "hmmm, if we were staying there, we'd be home by now!" ;)
     



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