Will we stay or will we go? Decisions, Dining and Detours, Oh My! WDW and NO DCL November of 2020, updated 9-20-20

tundra1

Mouseketeer
Joined
Jan 25, 2019
Joining in! First of all don’t listen to those who say give up already; see it through till the end lol! You know from my TR we just went to Disney and it’s about absolutely worth it to go now/this year. I know the outlook for Nov cruises seems bleak, believe me I wish that wasn’t the case and am preparing for further cancellations this year :sad: But you got next year set and will still have a great time this year in Disney! Awesome on they BLT points too!

I haven’t gotten to this yet in my TR but we always park hop ALOT and that’s the one thing we really did miss this time. From all info we have gotten to this point I do not expect PH to be back in 2020 but it’s still worth going :goodvibes
You are absolutely right. I refuse to give up completely and throw in the towel. We have been practicing with face masks on the kids, and except for the 2 year old, they are all doing just fine! I am actually excited about the lower crowd levels, which will give us more time to explore areas outside the parks! Now that they have moved back the cruising dates to October 31st, that only gives us 2 weeks before our cruise, so that part of our plans look a bit bleak, but the rest should be fine.

Thanks for the encouragement!

:thanks:
 

Bama Mom

Disney Dreamer
Joined
Dec 13, 2017
Just popping in. ts interesting for me to see how people are handling all the unknowns right now. At this point no one knows what to expect and I have to say you are handling it like a champ. My sisters and I are planning a girls trip for June 2021 and I am so hoping things are somewhat back to normal by then.
 

tundra1

Mouseketeer
Joined
Jan 25, 2019
Just popping in. ts interesting for me to see how people are handling all the unknowns right now. At this point no one knows what to expect and I have to say you are handling it like a champ. My sisters and I are planning a girls trip for June 2021 and I am so hoping things are somewhat back to normal by then.
I hope you and your sisters have an amazing time! :dance3: There is nothing better than a girls trip! Thanks for the encouragement! :flower1:
 
  • disney-inspired

    Disney on the brain 24/7/365!
    Joined
    Jan 24, 2008
    Hello!
    Wow you have been through quite the whirlwind! Here to say I'm following.

    We're going next September and we really hope hopping is back by then and that masks aren't required.
     

    tundra1

    Mouseketeer
    Joined
    Jan 25, 2019
    Hello!
    Wow you have been through quite the whirlwind! Here to say I'm following.

    Thank you! We are not giving up yet! Our cruise group is shrinking rapidly. Some days I want to throw in the towel and just plan on adding 4 more days to our WDW trip. But I am doing my best to be patient. All indications are that Disney wants to cruise. They are just waiting for Clia and the CDC to give the go ahead. And I am sure that ship will never be more sterile than when it first starts sailing! pirate:

    We're going next September and we really hope hopping is back by then and that masks aren't required.
    Smart to get next year booked as a backup especially since it'll end up saving you money in the end!
    Thanks Courtney! We are doing our best to stay hopeful for this year... and who knows, maybe we will want to go again next fall! So I am glad we have a back up cruise planned! :sail:
     

    tundra1

    Mouseketeer
    Joined
    Jan 25, 2019
    Joining in! First of all don’t listen to those who say give up already; see it through till the end lol! You know from my TR we just went to Disney and it’s about absolutely worth it to go now/this year. I know the outlook for Nov cruises seems bleak, believe me I wish that wasn’t the case and am preparing for further cancellations this year :sad: But you got next year set and will still have a great time this year in Disney! Awesome on they BLT points too!

    I haven’t gotten to this yet in my TR but we always park hop ALOT and that’s the one thing we really did miss this time. From all info we have gotten to this point I do not expect PH to be back in 2020 but it’s still worth going :goodvibes
    Thanks for joining in Ariane! I really appreciate the words of wisdom! Yes, not being able to park hop will definitely slow us down a bit. When you were at the Contemporary, did they have any nighttime activities at the resort? I was wondering if they are still having the outdoor movies, campfires with marshmallows, watercraft to rent, etc. I can see almost everyone deciding to head to Disney Springs after AK closes at 5pm, and that area will be mobbed with people! :crowded: I would rather head back to BLT, have dinner in our villa, and then go outside with the older kids to participate in whatever activity is going on. :boat:
     


  • CruellaNY

    It’s Good to Be Bad
    Joined
    Jul 9, 2020
    When you were at the Contemporary, did they have any nighttime activities at the resort? I was wondering if they are still having the outdoor movies, campfires with marshmallows, watercraft to rent, etc.
    Hi! We were at BCV and they were doing movies on the lawn! Unfortunately there are no watercraft rentals right now which I think is a little weird since you can totally physically distance while doing that; think it's a cost saving thing :( But just like things can be taken away things can be added so maybe that will return by your trip! The pools are open until 9 or 11 depending on the pool so that's an option for later at night too.
    I can see almost everyone deciding to head to Disney Springs after AK closes at 5pm, and that area will be mobbed with people! :crowded:
    Yeah.....we had two ok nights last month and then a too crowded Saturday night; we're planning on DS once for Sept right now on a Thursday so hopefully it won't be bad but with the reduced hours IDK.....
     

    tundra1

    Mouseketeer
    Joined
    Jan 25, 2019
    Hi again,
    I am so excited! :yay: Our 75 day mark was August 31st, and we were able to sign up for on board activities and excursions. I had every intention to "do it ourselves", especially in St. Thomas, and may still end up doing that, but in the meantime, I decided to book a couple of Disney excursions just in case Disney follows MSC's lead and only allows cruise ship passengers to leave the ship in port when they are on a cruise line sponsored activity.

    Almost every day of the cruise, I have a tasty beverage tasting of some sort. Saturday is sail away day, and ends with a Champagne tasting after the boys go to bed. 🍾 Sunday starts with the Disney Jr. Character breakfast, then we plan on watching the Packer Game in the sports bar, and finish the afternoon with a stem to stern wine 🍷 tasting.

    Monday is another day at sea, and we will have a lesson in Mixology 🍹 at noon plus a Bourbon tasting at 8pm 🥃.

    Tuesday is our day in Tortola, and we booked the half day excursion to Virgin Gorda to see the baths. Thanks to Kelly @buzzrelly for her awesome pictures and description of that excursion! 🌴

    Tuesday night is Pirate night, so we figure the drink of the day will be something fun! pirate:

    Wednesday we are in St. Thomas. Someone posted on the cruise FB group that Disney has made arrangements with the island of St. Thomas to allow their cruise ship passengers to go to Magen's Bay every other Wednesday, starting November 18th. :beach: Well.... guess who is going to be there on November 18th!!!!!! Anyway, if they are allowing bus trips to Magen's Bay, hopefully they will also allow tour groups at Coral World. I booked a half day excursion to Coral World for the whole family. If that gets cancelled, we will switch to Magen's Bay. I know Coral World is only a small park, but with an infant, 2 year old, 4 year old, and 7 year old, it should be perfect as a family excursion. Plus, it includes about an hour or so at Coki Beach, so we can get some time in the waves before our northern skin gets too burnt. :cool1: LOL! There just isn't much else for a child under the age of 5 to participate in. If anyone has done the Coral World excursion, please let me know if it is worthwhile, or if it is just a waste of a morning.

    Once we get back to the ship, the adult girls are going to the Chocolate and Liquor tasting... that sounds right up my alley! 🍫 :drinking1

    The next day is another day at sea, and we are giving my son and his wife a break from the kids. They have an entire day to be adults, finishing with dinner at Remy. 🧀 That was the number one request of my daughter-in-law, and I am so happy we were able to book this reservation! I am sure the mid-ship detective agency will get a visit from the boys! 🕵️‍♂️

    Friday is our day at Castaway Cay and the final day of our cruise. They are offering a hiking/kayaking excursion in the morning, which my DH, DD, and I are signed up for. In the afternoon, my son, daughter-in-law, and grandson will be swimming with the stingrays. I hope those two activities are worthwhile. It should be a great way to cap off the cruise! Of course, we still have one more evening to enjoy, and there just happens to be a martini tasting that night! 🍸🍸

    I am so very hopeful that this cruise will happen. But, we do have our backup plans still. I heard that Disney is offering some discounts, so I plan to see if I can get rooms at a less expensive price than we currently have (rack rates). Of course, I have not seen Wisconsin on any current list of states getting the discount...yet. But, you never know! That will be my next goal.

    We are also one week from ADR's, so it will be great to know whether we are actually cruising or not! :sail: I still am not sure exactly where we plan to have our dinners, but with the earlier hours at the parks, I am thinking we may end up in Disney Springs, since that will be the only place we can get too on Disney transportation. I only have a week to figure this out! Eek!

    Stay posted!
     

    buzzrelly

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Nov 20, 2005
    Tuesday is our day in Tortola, and we booked the half day excursion to Virgin Gorda to see the baths. Thanks to Kelly @buzzrelly for her awesome pictures and description of that excursion! 🌴
    I'd do it all again, without hesitation! Such an awesome day!


    Friday is our day at Castaway Cay and the final day of our cruise. They are offering a hiking/kayaking excursion in the morning, which my DH, DD, and I are signed up for. In the afternoon, my son, daughter-in-law, and grandson will be swimming with the stingrays. I hope those two activities are worthwhile. It should be a great way to cap off the cruise!
    I prefer my CC days to be strictly relaxing, but I'm sure whatever you do there will be amazing :love:


    I only have a week to figure this out! Eek!
    Good luck!
     

    Bama Mom

    Disney Dreamer
    Joined
    Dec 13, 2017
    I hope you and your sisters have an amazing time! :dance3: There is nothing better than a girls trip! Thanks for the encouragement! :flower1:
    Thank you so much. We've changed our trip to March so it's even closer now. We are also up to 9 of us going (one of which is an infant). We may add one more and may lose the niece and her baby depending on how things are going closer to our trip time.
     
  • tundra1

    Mouseketeer
    Joined
    Jan 25, 2019
    Hey Everyone,
    We made it to ADR's reservation day, and they still have not cancelled our cruise! :sail:The last word out of the Bahamas is that they are allowing tourism to start back up for people who have vacations planned, and the privately owed islands are cleared to have their cruise ships back. There was also mention of cruise ships passengers "tendering" to Magen's Bay on St. Thomas, which is not what I had in mind, but we would make that work. I am still keeping my fingers crossed for Tortola, since I REALLY want to stop there. :beach:

    Back to our park stay and the ADR's... I finally admitted to myself that park hopping would not be coming back, and the only way we will make it to Epcot is if we switch our 3-day park hoppers to 4 day single park tickets. I called the WDW ticket help line, and after an hour and 17 minutes of waiting, got this sweet, but a tad ditsy CM with the most beautiful sing-song voice on the other end. I explained what I needed, and she started clicking away on her computer. Finally, she said, "Okay, you are all set, we will refund the difference between the park hopper price and the 3 day single park price to your credit card." :confused3 I said, "Oh no! I want to change these tickets to 4 day single park tickets, and I know it will cost an additional $20 per ticket, but that is what we need to do." She replies and says in her sweet little voice, "That's right... you told me that at the beginning of the call. Let me start over." Start Over????? By now, she had been clicking away for at least 15 minutes and I needed to call in to a meeting soon. 😠 I was debating just telling her never mind and hanging up, but being unsure of the status of my tickets now that she had been clicking around with them, I decided to hang on and keep my fingers crossed. All of a sudden, this sweet CM sings "Oh oh, my computer is acting up. What is your phone number in case we get disconnected? I gave her my number and about 30 seconds later, I hear her saying, "Terri, can you hear me?" I answered Yes, I can hear you, and she responds with "Terri, can you hear me?" This went back and forth a couple of times, and then she says "I don't know what is happening here." and the line goes dead! :badpc: Now what? Will she call me back?

    Actually, this sweet CM did call me back after about 20 minutes. I had called in to my other meeting and was listening to the conversations there, but I had priorities, and my phone was muted, so the CM and I started chatting again and she told me how she had to reboot her entire computer system, etc., etc.. Finally, she said, "Okay, I have all the information I need, this will just take a minute to work out, let me put you on hold so you can listen to some nice Disney music while you are waiting." :hippie: And, the Disney music never came on, and my phone line was disconnected again.

    So, I went back to listening to my meeting, thinking I will try again the next day. However, about a half hour later, I answer my phone and hear the sweet voice singing to me again..."Terri, are you there???? I have everything fixed for you! You are all set with your 4-day single park tickets, and everything is showing up in your MDE app." :cloud9: +I thanked her and asked about the charges, since I had not verified my credit card information with her yet, and she said, "Oh honey, you were so patient and sweet, and you didn't yell at me, so I just made the changes for you at no charge!" Shocked, (I am a nurse and patience is something innate in us) I thanked her again, she wished me a Magical Day, and then I emailed Guest Services at WDW to send them a cast compliment for her. It was the least I could do after she saved me $140! I could buy a cute Dooney bag with that! When I checked my MDE app, not only did she get everything entered correctly, but she somehow made the tickets so that I can modify them if needed, and ADD EXTRA DAYS to the tickets in case our cruise gets cancelled! How's that for some pixie dust! pixiedust:

    For ADR's, I woke up at 0500, :surfweb: only to find that the Disney Website was down. I don't understand....I thought their website NEVER had issues! :rolleyes: It kept kicking me out completely, and every time I tried again, I had to start all over from the log-in page. I am not an early morning person, and eventually gave up and took a nap until 6:15am, and this time it worked a little better... but it was still a struggle.

    With the new 4 day park ticket, I added Epcot to our arrival day. It is open the latest (7pm - Woo Hoo! :rolleyes:), so we can more easily get there. I am hoping the monorail is working, but if not, they must have a bus that comes to the Contemporary Resort. I am hoping that if our plane lands on time (scheduled for 12:20), we can be at BLT by 2:30, leave our luggage with the luggage service people if our room is not ready, and hop a bus to Epcot and arrive by 3:30 🤞. There were very few available dining options in the Disney parks for parties of 8, and by the time I was able to book anything, the Garden Grill in the Land pavilion did not have an opening for us. My 2 year old grandson loves Mickey Mouse ::MickeyMo so I wanted to start the trip with a character meal if possible. My DH suggested that I split up the party, and then I was able to book the Garden Grill with 2 tables 5 minutes apart, which will work out great! The family style service will be easier, since we will not have to worry about ordering off menus, and the food choices are perfect for the boys (my son and DH included!) after a long day of travel. Actually, I think my husband was more disappointed in missing out on that meal than I was, so I am glad we could make it work out. The 5:30 reservation should give us time after dinner to walk around the World Showcase at park closing to let the crowds clear out and to see Epcot all lit up at night. I think this will turn out fine.

    The next day we will be heading to Hollywood Studios. :smickey: I REALLY want to snag a boarding group for Rise of the Resistance, so we will get there at park opening. The only reservation I could get for a group of 8 is 50's Prime Time Cafe at 11:05am; but that should give us time to ride Mickey/Minnie RR at park opening, or go see Muppet Vision 3D and Star Tours prior to lunch, or have another miracle happen and get boarding group 1-5 so we can ride RotR before lunch. It will also give us the entire afternoon to enjoy the park, bring the 2 year old and the baby to the Baby Care center for a nap, and also save the majority of Star Wars Land :chewy: and Toy Story land 🎢 for after 2 pm. We will get dinner in Star Wars Land, probably at Ronto Roasters or Docking Bay 7. I think Oga's will have to wait for another visit, unless the little ones go home early and the remaining adults can snag an end of the day reservation.

    Thursday will bring us to Animal Kingdom. 🦒🦓🦍🐘🐾 We plan on getting there close to park opening. I can already hear the safari calling my name! I was not able to make any reservations for that day. However, the quick service options are great at this park, so I think we will be fine not having a sit down meal here. Since the park closes so early, we hope to make it back to BLT in time to see the castle all aglow with the new Christmas projections. (Especially now that MK will be open until 7pm!)

    Friday is our Magic Kingdom day. I am so excited that the MK park hours have been extended, because that will give us more time during the day to go back to BLT for swimming and naps. I have booked a 12:30 reservation at Whispering Canyon at the WL for lunch, which will give us a chance to ride the boat to and from the WL, as well as tour the grounds and see the geyser before heading back. If we want to swim after lunch, there will be time for that as well before going to the park later in the afternoon to ride the attractions we did not get to in the morning, or re-ride the ones that Charlie and Ben loved the most! pooh::ccat::dumbo::goofy:pluto:

    Saturday morning I have booked Chef Mickey's at the CR for breakfast. They were able to accommodate our party of 8, and it will be the perfect meal before the cruise or before we relocate to another resort if our cruise gets cancelled (plus, it will our first opportunity for Mickey Waffles!). With it being a Saturday, we don't have any plans right now to visit a park on that day, but will instead swim, relax at the pool, go resort hopping around the monorail loop, transfer to our new resort, and then chill out there. After four park days, we will need that day to rest and recharge. :music:

    So that's the update for now! I am still hoping and praying that we end up cruising, and that our cruise itinerary does not eliminate Tortola. I would be okay with a double dip at Castaway Cay, but I have no desire to stop in Nassau, and if that is the case, we will cancel our cruise and wait until next year. That would be the deal breaker for us.
     

    tundra1

    Mouseketeer
    Joined
    Jan 25, 2019
    😥 This will be short and sweet because I am in mourning today. I was up at 0500 to make my back-up plan ADR's (for the four extra days in the parks should the cruise be cancelled) and actually found some decent reservations. However, I never thought I would be using them. 2 hours later my daughter-in-law was texting me saying that the cruise Facebook group was reporting that our cruise had disappeared from the DCL app "Plans" page. So, I checked, and yes, it was gone. The cruise, the excursions, the tasty beverage tastings, all gone. :sad2: I am sad.

    I REALLY wanted to go on this cruise. It has been such an awful year, and the cruise was something I truly needed. For just one week, I would not have to cook, clean or even make my bed. I could drink and not worry about driving. I could have fun with my children and grandchildren, and enjoy whatever the day would bring, and not worry about work calling me and asking me to come in and help staff the ED. It would fulfill a dream I have had for a LONG time. :sail:

    Don't worry, I am generally an optimistic person, and by mid-morning, I was already scheming on what to do. After all, I had a plan B. And I had a back up plan to the plan B. I was on a mission to make this work; but this time I was going to add a few things for ME, rather than just thinking about everyone else.

    Stay tuned for what our plans turned out to be! :rockband:
     

    buzzrelly

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Nov 20, 2005
    I'm so sorry your cruise was cancelled :sad1: I hope you can take advantage of the 125% FCC and you can start looking forward to your next one ::yes::
     

    CruellaNY

    It’s Good to Be Bad
    Joined
    Jul 9, 2020
    Definitely take that 125% FCC! I am so sorry it's cancelled, I had a feeling they would be cancelled through the rest of the year and even though DCL hasn't done all of December yet, the other cruise lines are slowly doing just that. We got word from 2 on Monday and I figured DCL wasn't far behind and the longer pauses are continuing to roll in today :(

    Look forward to hearing all of what your "Plan B" looks like!
     

    Sarahboo

    100% geek
    Joined
    Feb 28, 2007
    I am so sorry that the cruise was cancelled. This has been a year of disappointments for so many people. I love that you're an optimist like me, though! I'm sure Plan B will be great! I can't wait to hear about it!
     

    tundra1

    Mouseketeer
    Joined
    Jan 25, 2019
    I'm so sorry your cruise was cancelled :sad1: I hope you can take advantage of the 125% FCC and you can start looking forward to your next one ::yes::

    Thanks Kelly! I was actually moping around for an entire day. :sad1: That is so unlike me, but by 5pm, I had everything pretty much rearranged.

    I think we are going to wait until late February of 2022. I found out my nephew is getting married the weekend we are on the back up cruise I had booked, so I need to cancel my 2021 cruise reservation anyway. I was looking at Christmas week, but the costs of the rooms are double what we would be paying in November, so even with the 125%, it is not worth it. It will make sense to go at the end of February, when they cancel school for conferences anyway, so the grandkids will not miss that much. And we can celebrate Aubrie's second birthday on the cruise ship!


    Definitely take that 125% FCC! I am so sorry it's cancelled, I had a feeling they would be cancelled through the rest of the year and even though DCL hasn't done all of December yet, the other cruise lines are slowly doing just that. We got word from 2 on Monday and I figured DCL wasn't far behind and the longer pauses are continuing to roll in today :( Look forward to hearing all of what your "Plan B" looks like!

    Thanks Ariane! If my first cruise is booked with Costco, do I have to rebook through them also? Or can I transfer my reservation to a travel agent? I need to find the time to sit on hold for a couple of hours to figure out what my options are. I will definitely rebook though! I am not giving up that easily! And we still have November to look forward to! :teleport: Have a great time at WDW this coming week!

    I am so sorry that the cruise was cancelled. This has been a year of disappointments for so many people. I love that you're an optimist like me, though! I'm sure Plan B will be great! I can't wait to hear about it!
    Thanks Sarahboo! I am already looking forward to plan B! I should have the next version ready to go by tomorrow! :banana:
     

    CruellaNY

    It’s Good to Be Bad
    Joined
    Jul 9, 2020
    If my first cruise is booked with Costco, do I have to rebook through them also? Or can I transfer my reservation to a travel agent? I need to find the time to sit on hold for a couple of hours to figure out what my options are. I will definitely rebook though! I am not giving up that easily! And we still have November to look forward to! :teleport: Have a great time at WDW this coming week!

    Hi! Nope you do not have to rebook through them and it won't actually even need to be a transfer! The FCC is tied to YOU/the guest so it doesn't matter "who" books using it; you through DCL, Costco, or a travel agent :) It's tied to your name although you'd most likely need to provide your original booking # to DCL when you rebook - or give that to a TA if you use one.

    Yes to November! And thank you, two days to go and I can't wait!
     

    tundra1

    Mouseketeer
    Joined
    Jan 25, 2019
    :darth:Here's the answer to the title: We are staying! We are not going on a cruise. And... we made a major detour along the way!

    I left off letting you know that our cruise was cancelled. I had changed our 3-day park hopper tickets to 4 day single park tickets, and booked Epcot for our Tuesday arrival day. 4 days later, I booked our ADR's for the next four days in the park. 2 hours later, I found out our cruise may be cancelled. It disappeared from my cruise app, everyone on my Facebook cruise group was saying that meant the cruise was going to be cancelled, and of course, I was going through the entire 5 phases of grief in one day. o_O...>:(...:rolleyes:...:sad2:...:yay:
    .
    I started off in denial, telling myself there is a just a glitch on the Disney Cruise app. I started searching every blogger, and could not find any mention of Disney cancelling their November cruises. I was in the office that day, and not taking care of patients, so I went into work an hour late, because I just could not bear to be at work with all this uncertainty. :worried: I kept watching my cruise app waiting for the cruise to reappear. I couldn't find anything. I started checking other Disney cruise Facebook groups, and I could not find anyone claiming the cruises were definitely going to be cancelled. :surfweb: Actually, there was not much discussion about it at all, so perhaps this was going to be another of those false rumors and the people in my particular Facebook group were just jumping the gun! Yes, we will still be sailing in November! :sail:Feeling better, I went into work.

    Once at work, I could not really concentrate on much at all. I started getting angry. 😠 I was angry at the Facebook group for mentioning that the cruise was going to be cancelled when it was not officially cancelled yet. I was angry that Disney was going to cancel their cruises when other cruise lines were sailing. I was angry that Disney was not even waiting for the CDC to extend the no sail order; they were just going to outright cancel our sailing for no good reason. I was angry at Mickey Mouse for letting me down. I was channeling my inner Dark Lord. :darth: I was mad.

    After listening in on a couple of virtual meetings where I was not paying attention in the least (Hopefully I was not given any tasks to do, because I didn't even take notes...), I slipped into the bargaining phase, and started to make some plans. I had two sets of back up plans, one for the Beach Club Villas, the other for Art of Animation. If Disney was going to cancel my cruise, then I am not going to give Disney $5000 of my money for four nights in 2 studio villas at the Beach Club, or $4000 of my money to stay at AoA. I will get a jump on things and beat everyone else whose cruises that week are cancelled. I will find a DVC member who has extra points and book my stay through them. :smooth: So, I submitted a request to the DVC Store. (I am too wary to book through the DVC Rent/Sell people in the forums.) I also looked up David's DVC Rentals, but was not willing to pay the $133 service fee unless the DVC Store did not have anything for me to rent. I figured that by the end of the week, I would hear back from the DVC store and could decide on David's after that.

    Lo and behold, I heard from the DVC Store an hour later! I had decided to go for what I really wanted, and asked for a 2 bedroom dedicated villa at the Beach Club with the Boardwalk Villas as a back up. Well, they did not have those two, but they did have 8 other options for me! The DVC Store was also running a sale, and for bookings ending prior to December 20th, instead of paying $19.00 per point, I could purchase the points for only $14.00 per point. Even better! That saved me almost $900. My options from the DVC Store included Old Key West, Saratoga Springs, Boulder Ridge, and Animal Kingdom Lodge, Kidani Village. Old Key West and Saratoga Springs were quickly eliminated, because we would not have a rental vehicle and were relying on Disney Transportation, so we needed somewhere that had better transportation options that would work for us. I did not want a resort with multiple bus stops and the chance that the bus would be full when it finally got to our stop, causing us to wait even longer. With four children under the age of 8, waiting can be a challenge!

    That left us with Boulder Ridge and Animal Kingdom Lodge. As much as I would love to stay at Boulder Ridge, I felt that this resort also has limited transportation, and we would be better served there if we had our own vehicle. Animal Kingdom Lodge Kidani Village had a standard view villa and a Savanna View one for $100 more. That was a no brainer! I could get a 2 bedroom villa for four nights with a Savanna View for less money than ONE of the studio villas at the Beach Club! 527171
    So, being daring and in that bargaining stage, I told DVC store that I wanted the room. Less than an hour later, I had the contract signed, sealed and delivered! I felt I this was a great bargain, and I was starting to feel better.

    AKL was a dream of mine. I love giraffes. I have statues of them everywhere. I sign up for the giraffe feeding experience every time we are at the zoo. I could watch them for hours and not be bored. The reason I had not considered AKL was because it is so far removed from the other parks, which might be difficult when we had to get the two little ones back to the resort for naps. But, what if we switched our resort days around, and did our two Animal Kingdom days during the time we were staying at AKL? That would work, and we could sit on the balcony of the villa watching the animals while Aubrie and Charlie were napping. The older boys could go swimming, and they have a great pool. If it is raining, there are lots of cultural activities offered at AKL for them to do. After naptime, we would be close enough to take the 10 minute bus ride back to AK to finish out the day.

    So, feeling better, I cancelled all my other reservations. The down payments for AoA and BCV credited back to my account were enough to cover the cost of the AKL villa. 💸 I extended our park passes to 7 day single park tickets, and now could go to Epcot twice, AK twice, MK twice. and HS once. Plus, the day we moved resorts, we would take a day off from the parks and just enjoy other areas of WDW. Since that is a Saturday, which seems to be a high volume day at the parks, it is probably a good day not to fight the crowds.

    30 minutes later, I got the official announcements from Disney Cruise Line that my cruise was cancelled. I got two of them, since we had two rooms booked. 30 minutes after that, I got the 2 official announcements from Costco, telling me that my cruises were cancelled. and to call and let them know what I wanted to do about the payments we had made. I was depressed. :eeyore:

    After moping around for the rest of the day, the next day I got busy changing our return flights from Saturday the 21st of November to Wednesday the 18th. Workwise, this is better for me, because I will have 5 days to quarantine before going back to work, and won't miss any extra work days waiting to be tested. I can get tested on Monday morning and be back to work that afternoon. Changing our flights was easy peasy. I had booked them during the time of no change fees, so it did not cost me anything to switch the flights around. I also will be able find flights which leave Mid-afternoon, so that is better for us. We can take our time checking out of the hotel at 11:00, and then taking the Magic Express back to the airport. I looked into changing our airport parking at O'Hare to have a return date of the 18th, but right now, the price is higher for 3 fewer days than what I paid for 12 days, so I am just going to keep my current reservation.

    I also ended up cancelling my Florida Tours van which was going to take us from BLT to the port. They were very gracious about it. I am thinking about renting a car for a few hours on Saturday to move our luggage from BLT to AKL, make another grocery store run, and perhaps hit up one of the Disney Outlet stores before returning it that evening. I will have to see if I can figure something out.

    As far as our cruise plans go, I have a back up cruise already planned for the same week next year, but now my nephew is getting married during that week, so I will need to go to West Virginia for his wedding instead, which means that 2021 cruise also needs to be rescheduled. Thank goodness I did not waste my Future Cruise Credit on that trip! As much as I would love to do a Merrytime Cruise :santa:, I think two trips in the same month will be difficult. The Christmas week cruises are twice the cost of a non-Christmas week cruise, so that is just too much money to spend. I am now thinking about scheduling the cruise for late February of 2022. Thanks to @CruellaNY for answering my questions on how to make this work!

    Next up... I have come to accept my fate, and now am excited about our upcoming WDW trip! :flower1: I changed around our park days and dining reservations. Some of this turned out well, some, I am not as sure about. I keep checking dining options, but there is nothing left to book! I think either Disney is starting to increase their park passes so there are more people to compete with, and/or they need to open up more Table Service options! Or at least bring back Boma or Mara or Jiko at AKL!
     
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