SURPRISE!! We're FINALLY going to Disney World!! Updated 4/17

Discussion in 'Pre-Trip Reports and Plans' started by Kathy Muniz, Apr 16, 2018 at 11:38 AM.

  1. Kathy Muniz

    Kathy Muniz Mouseketeer

    Jan 27, 2017
    Hey everyone! My name is Kathy and my DH and I are planning a very special surprise vacation for our two kids this December!! The wait is torture so I figured I'd start a pre-trip report to help the time go by and share the excitement with my fellow DisBoarders :) If you have any tips/advice please feel free to share! This is our first family trip to Orlando and I'm doing all the planning so any help is appreciated!

    Who we are


    I am 32 years old and I am a HUGE Disney fan!! :earsgirl: I cannot put into words how freaking excited I am for this trip!! We had a Disney Cruise planned for last year that would've spent one day at WDW, but we ended up cancelling that trip to start the Dave Ramey plan and pay off all our debt :sad: Damn Responsibility!! But 2017 is over, we paid it all off and now it's finally time to see Mickey!! :yay:

    DH (Johnathon) is 34 and ,while not the biggest Disney fan, loves rides and is being an awesome sport letting me plan my dream Disney vacation for us :) He looks at me a little weird since I watch The DIS/Tim Tracker/Justin Scarred etc. etc. non stop... but once he sees how much my planning pays off he’ll get it... lol


    DS (Jayden) is 8 years old (will be 9 during this trip) and DD (Angie) is 15 (will be 16 on this trip) and they both cannot wait to finally go to Florida! We told the kids maybe we'd try for next year so they have NO IDEA this is coming! They both love Disney (almost) as much as I do, so I am super excited for all of the things we'll experience as a family on this trip! DD is a HUGE Harry Potter fan so she is going to lose her mind when she finds out we're going to Universal as well!

    Trip Info
    Dates: December 8th - 16th

    WDW Info
    Pop Century December 8th - 13th
    5 Day Park Hopper Tickets & MVMCP on 12/9
    Will be getting Memory Maker because I already know I'll want every single picture
    Hoping to also book: BOG lunch, Sci-Fi Lunch, CRT Dinner

    Universal Info
    Royal Pacific Resort December 13th - 16th
    3 Day - 2 Park Tickets
    Will be getting the photo package here as well
    * I love that Universal doesn't need so much planning, glad this will be at the end of our trip

    The Surprise!
    So we're planning to wait until October 6th to tell the kids about this trip since this will be their Christmas present this year and we have a very cool plan on how to surprise them (more to come later). It seems like almost all of our friends have gone to Disney World this year, or have a trip planned, so it is SO HARD not to tell the kids we're going too!! Is it October yet?!?!? Once October comes we're only going to tell them about the dates for Disney World. On the 13th, the kids will think we're going back home, but we'll really be headed to 3 more days of fun at Universal!

    Countdowns (as of 4/18)
    Try to get Free Dining - 5 days??
    ADRs - 54 days
    Tell the Kids!! - 170 days
    Fast Passes - 173 days
    Vacation Begins!! - 233 days

    Table of Contents
    Draft Plans - 4/17
    Flights Are Booked! - 4/17
    Free Dining?!? - Coming Soon
    ADR Day!! - Coming Jun 2018
    Surprise Announcement!! - Coming Oct 2018
    Fast Pass Day!! - Coming Oct 2018
    Time to Pack!! - Coming Dec 2018
    Trip Report!! - Coming Dec 2018
    Last edited: Apr 18, 2018 at 12:49 PM
  2. Kathy Muniz

    Kathy Muniz Mouseketeer

    Jan 27, 2017
    Sorry for the extra large photos... new to posting images... hopefully I can fix this moving forward
  3. Avatar


  4. Kathy Muniz

    Kathy Muniz Mouseketeer

    Jan 27, 2017
    Draft Itinerary

    Ok so I know these plans will probably change 10 million times between now and December, or really October since that’s when we’ll have to choose our fast passes, but here’s a first draft of our daily plans. Let me know what you think!

    Saturday December 8th – Arrival Day!
    • Arrive at MCO ~10:00am; Take ME to Pop Century
    • Have lunch at Pop or AoA
    • Take bus to Epcot
    • Epcot: Fast passes for Future World rides, walk around World Showcase
    • Take monorail to TTC/Magic Kingdom (This will be our one day to experience the monorail)
    • Magic Kingdom: Dinner at Casey’s, watch fireworks, hang out late if the park hours allow
    Sunday December 9th – Animal Kingdom & MVMCP
    • Rope Drop Animal Kingdom 9am
    • Ride FoP first if we don’t get a fast pass – get fast passes for Safari & Everest
    • Lunch at Satu’li Canteen or Flame Tree BBQ
    • Head back to hotel for nap break
    • Dinner at Pop or AoA
    • Take bus to Magic Kingdom for MVMCP
    Monday December 10th – Hollywood Studios Day
    • Rope drop HS 9am: Depends on how crazy it is that morning if we’ll try to get in line for all the toy story rides or just get a fast pass for one and try to get another one for our last Disney day
    • Lunch at Sci Fi Dine in Theater
    • Nap break at hotel if we’re feeling tired
    • Dinner at Hotel / or Brown Derby if we can suck it up and stay in the park all day
    • Watch Indiana Jones
    • Watch fireworks then head back to hotel
    Tuesday December 11th – Magic Kingdom & Animal Kingdom
    • Rope Drop Magic Kingdom 8am
    • Lunch at BOG
    • Watch Parade 2:00PM
    • Head back to hotel for nap break / Bus to Animal Kingdom if we’re not tired
    • Dinner at Satu’li Canteen (if we don’t go on Sunday)
    • Walk around Pandora - see the tree awakenings
    • Watch Rivers of Light then head back to hotel
    Wednesday December 12th – 4 Park Challenge Day
    • For our last day I thought it would be fun to park hop and go to all 4 parks
    • Start at Epcot and rope drop Soarin/Test Track
    • Take bus to HS and try to get FP for slinking dog and ToT
    • Get shakes at 50s café
    • Take bus to AK and ride a couple rides
    • Lunch at AK or at hotel
    • Nap break
    • Take bus to Magic Kingdom in the evening
    • Dinner at CRT
    • Watch fireworks
    • Do more rides if park stays open late that night
    Thursday December 13th – “Departure Day” aka Day at Universal
    • Kids will wake up and think we’re heading back home... I’ll tell them we have a late flight and let them sleep in a little
    • We’ll surprise them (still debating how) with the news that we’re actually heading to Universal!
    • Hang out at Universal / City Walk for the rest of the day
    Friday December 14th / Saturday December 15th – Universal
    • Very excited our hotel has express pass so I won’t have to do much planning! Just going to go with the flow and what the kids want to do since they’ve been there before with my dad. I would definitely like to get a shake at Toothsome and eat at one of the HP restaurants :stir:
    Sunday December 16th – Real Departure Day
    • Time to really head home :guilty: Flight leaves around 10am so any advice on what time to leave the hotel to go to the airport? Will most likely Uber unless you know of a better option…
    Last edited: Apr 18, 2018 at 11:13 AM
  5. Kathy Muniz

    Kathy Muniz Mouseketeer

    Jan 27, 2017
    Flights are booked!!!

    Was planning to wait a little longer to book them but I found really good prices using one way reservations. It all feels so real now!

    Hubby even said that he's pretty excited about this trip last night! :cool1: I'm the psycho Disney fan so this was music to my ears!

    Now debating whether to use uber or a standard airport car service to get to/from the airport... Anyone use uber to get from Connecticut to LGA before? Or is it a safer bet to have a car service reserved ahead of time?
    Last edited: Apr 18, 2018 at 11:14 AM
  6. dedesmith32

    dedesmith32 Mouseketeer

    Mar 2, 2009
    I’m following along! My family is taking our first trip to Disney World too and it looks like we are doing thing very similarly except that we are doing our Universal side first and then Disney world! My daughter adores HP too!

    We did a surprise trip to Disneyland in December 2014 and it was AMAZING! It will be awesome for your family!
    Kathy Muniz likes this.
  7. Kathy Muniz

    Kathy Muniz Mouseketeer

    Jan 27, 2017
    Hi Dede! Thanks for following along! How did you end up telling your kids about the trip in 2014? I love surprises :)
  8. dedesmith32

    dedesmith32 Mouseketeer

    Mar 2, 2009

Share This Page