Where do you begin

Discussion in 'Welcome to the DIS' started by Ally0005, Apr 2, 2006.

  1. Ally0005

    Ally0005 Earning My Ears

    Apr 2, 2006
    I plan on taking my family to Disney in May 2007. Everyone that I've talked to says it's alot of work and you really need to have everything scheduled to have a great Disney trip.
    Where do I start to plan our vacation? I will have a 7 year old and a 3 year old at the time of the trip.
    Thanks for any help you can give.
  2. dustysky

    dustysky DIS Veteran

    Feb 26, 2006
    Honestly I think it depends on your personality. If you try to plan to much I think it takes away from some of the experiance. My SIL plans her day to death and we hate going with her for that reason. She is always in such a rush that she never gets to SEE Disney and all of the little things that add up to the magic.
    Haveing a plan as to what rides are a must for you and your family is smart. Other then that I guess I am not much help.
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  4. joanchris

    joanchris DIS Veteran

    Jul 24, 2005
    Start with reading a lot here, buy (or borrow from the library, check it out first at a bookstore to see if the style matches your own) a book on Disney to have lots if information in one place (I like the Passporter),

    Then 6 months out (180 day, +10 if you're staying on Disney property) you can start making dining reservations....seems way far away, but if you want to eat at a table service restaurant you NEED to have reservations unless you're willing to wait a while, not likely given the ages of your kids. This means you'll need to have a general plan of what park to do on what day, etc.

    Another great website I used is Tourguidemike.com, there are links from these boards for a discount, he gives touring plans, typical days/half days for different types of groups--such as Magic Kingdom for groups with young children....was very helpful to me, under $20 and will give you your money back if you are not satisfied---so worth it to try it out.

    I learned sooooo much just from reading these boards here, if you have the time (they are quite addicting, as my trip was in Oct and I"m still here...don't know when we're going again, at least a year or two!)
    Have fun! :goodvibes
  5. byoung

    byoung <font color=coral>You are keeping us alive<br><br>

    Jun 22, 2005
  6. TikiGoddess

    TikiGoddess DIS Veteran

    Aug 26, 2005
    I haven't seen many people recommend it here, but I used the itinerary planner on waltdisneyworld.com last trip and it was great. I first bought a couple of books and figured out what we wouldn't want to miss and then I sat down at the computer with my maps from the books and planned out what I wanted to do. It really helped me to plan it hour to hour for our meals. That way we would end up in the general area we needed to be in when our ADR rolled around. I think it also helped us not to waste time figuring out what we wanted to do each day and we made a path that was efficient for seeing the parks. With that said, we did deviate some from the plan, but at least we never left the park saying, "Oh we completely forgot to do (blank)!" That was important to me. The itinerary section is under My Disney Vacation. I'm using it again for my next trip.
  7. slug

    slug DIS Veteran

    Mar 26, 2006
    We're going in May 07 as well. I too will have a 3 year old. I just booked the Contemporary yesterday. I was surprised that certain types of rooms were already all booked up. But I'm just relieved that it's all booked. May 17-23.

    I've been a bunch of times so I have a pretty good idea where to start planning. But when it gets closer I'll start making sure I know things like park hours and things like that so I know which parks to go to on which days. As far as a detailed schedule w/i the parks, I probably won't have a perfectly defines plan but I'll have a general idea.

    The last time we went, R.R coaster at MGM was being shut down for one week on our 2nd day there. So because I knew that, we scheduled MGM for our 1st day and were able to go on that ride before it closed. Had we not researched, we probably would have hit MGM on the 3rd day and missed it so that's an example of why research is important.

    I love the planning part and the most important advice I'd give is to do a lot of planning and have fun while you do it.
  8. teachingmykids

    teachingmykids In loving memory of Cpl. Bill Amundson, RANGER, 19

    Jun 15, 2002
    Since you're unfamiliar with the rides, I'd use a Guide book & determine which one DO NOT fit into your plan. No sense waiting in a line to find out the kids are too short or hate coasters, etc. As mentioned, always be in the park close to your dining reservations. If you're on site, plan a nap/swim for after lunch ~~ YOU will benefit most from that! :teeth:
  9. MinnieNurse

    MinnieNurse DIS Veteran

    Mar 25, 2006
    Definetly buy a guide book and read it. You have plenty of time to plan. I used The Unofficial Guide to Walt Disney World by Bob Schlinger and Birnbaum's Official Guide to Walt Disney World to plan our first trip and we had a great time. I even carried the Birnbaum's with me in my backpack at the parks so if I didnt recognize something I could read about it so we would know if we wanted to wait in line. Both of these can be purchased at most bookstores.

    If you did the dining plan it is wonderful. It made things so much easier for us and book your meals ahead of time. We never waited more than 15 minutes for a table.

    Have fun!! pixiedust: :goofy: :mickeyjum
  10. lustergirl

    lustergirl DIS Veteran

    Aug 25, 2005
    Your first good decision was coming here. There is alot of info to be found right here on these boards and the people here are awesome!!! Try the allearsnet and mouseforless website. They will give you alot of info about the parks, downtown Disney, and other areas. They also list menus of the great places you can eat at while vacationing at Disney. Get ready to "cry" when you walk onto Main Street USA in Magic Kingdom,I do every time, lol.
  11. Ally0005

    Ally0005 Earning My Ears

    Apr 2, 2006
    Wow, thanks for your replys.
    I ordered two books yesterday the passporter and the unofficial Guide Walt Disney.
    Last time I went to Disney I was 5 years old, husband has never gone.
    So we spend Sunday afternoon searching as much I we could.
    I'm sure I will be on here asking alot more questions.
    Thanks again
  12. mommaw2VA

    mommaw2VA Earning My Ears

    Apr 3, 2006
    I feel your pain. I was worried about our trip next week, but it is all coming together. I bought the unofficial guide and took a couple of months to browse through it. I marked with post its what we might be interested in, then I went on line and subscribed to the unofficial guides touring plans and that really brought things into focus. I used the info regarding what parks are busy what days and planned days accordingly. I talked to several people I know who have been recently. I am now trying not to over think it. Good Luck! :Pinkbounc
  13. phantom728

    phantom728 DIS Veteran

    Jan 11, 2006
    The two books that you bought I find to be the best. They both have candid information regarding the parks and the rides. As for me, we decide on a budget, then see what falls within our budgets. We generally try and stay in one of the moderate resorts as I've heard the value ones can be noisy (I like my beauty rest or it's just a day with the beast). Then you can research which ones are available and what they are located near. Some people want to be near a certain park, so they chose a hotel near there.

    There are so many great websites including this one, but I like www.wdwig.com for updates on parks hours and refurbished rides, reviews, etc. When we went in 2002, Haunted Mansion was closed and I found on the site that it would reopen on the day before we left. We made sure that we got to MK early that morning so we could ride it, as it's one of our fav's.

    Another great site for updates and discounts is www.mousesavers.com. Sign up and they send you monthly updates.

    But ultimately, I still go back to my books where I can make notes. I generally plan the week of where were going on what days, then a path through each park, but stopping to smell the Disney Magic throughout the whole day. That's the whole purpose for the trip, so enjoy pixiedust:

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