9/5/2019 0 Comments
Booking your first Disney trip
You've gone down the rabbit hole far enough, and you have finally made the decision to book your first Disney trip, but where do you begin?
Booking a Disney trip can be an overwhelming experience with all the different options, and decoding the Disney terminology. However, Main Street Mommy will have you feeling like a travel agent yourself in no time.
Staying on property vs off property
Let's be honest, Disney is EXPENSIVE! So expensive that the thought of even staying on Disney Property seems impossible for some. What if I told you Disney actually has resorts around the same cost as hotels off property? It's true! Disney has a ton of options when it comes to selecting hotels for your stay, and they even categorized their hotels in three brackets: Value, Moderate, and Deluxe. By doing this they have created resorts to fit almost everyone's budget. Value resorts can be as low as $99 per night with Deluxe Resorts costing up to $700+ per night.
All Disney Resorts include: game rooms, quick service (cafeterias), gift shops, pools, and activities all within a short walk from your room. Making it convenient and stress free compared to loading the family up in a car and driving to find food or entertainment. Also included in your stay is FREE transportation to and from all of the parks, other resorts, Disney Springs, and more. Most importantly included with your stay is Extra Magic Hours to the parks (additional park time with park ticket purchase), Magic Bands, and FREE transportation to and from the airport.
Staying at non Disney hotel you can expect to have some added expenses to your trip, such as parking at the parks ($25 per car, per day), and magic bands ($14.99 per person) to name a couple. *Magic Bands are not required, though they do make the trip hassle free.* The average nightly hotel cost in Orlando is between $135-$170.
My family has stayed at many of the resorts on property as well as off property. Hands down, we would always choose to stay at a Disney Resort rather than a hotel off property. The perks of a Disney Resort makes our vacation stress free, which is the point of a vacation, right?
*Check back with Main Street Mommy as we will prepare a blog on the different resorts Disney has to offer*
Discounts and Specials
Disney is known for offering multiple specials throughout the year for both resort stays and park tickets. Got your heart set on a certain date, but there is no current offers? Keep checking back on their website for specials that they have opened during your dates. With just a quick phone call a cast member will be more than happy to apply the special to your already booked stay!
Hassle Free booking
The whole process of booking a stay with Disney is truly hassle free. The online booking is so easy, that even the less tech savvy people would be able to book. Disney does require you to pay a deposit when booking your room, which is the 1st nights cost. Sometimes life happens and plans change, you are able to modify your booking online under your account info or by calling Customer Service. They do not charge you any additional penalties or fees for changing dates or even hotels (just the upcharge if the room is more expensive) if you make adjustments 31 days before your trip.
My husband is very indecisive and many times have we booked a resort, and then he changed his mind and wanted to stay at different resort. With a quick call to Customer Service, a cast member has always adjusted our stay and informed us of either the new balance, due upon check in, or the amount of credit we will have applied to our account.
Cast Members are super friendly and understanding to circumstances, so don't be afraid to make that call to have your booking adjusted.
By using the online booking tool, you'll be able create a vacation package all in one place. Once you have selected your resort and stay dates, the site will redirect you to park tickets. On this screen you will be able to select the amount of park days you wish to add for everyone in your party. This is a very convenient option if you already know how many park days you want to attend. If you don't, that's okay, you can continue without adding them and then purchase them later. You do NOT have to buy park tickets at the same time of your booking. You can purchase park tickets the day of, or even at the park as long as tickets are available.
After park tickets the website will prompt you to choose your dining plan. Though some families swear by dining plans, my family is not one to use this program. We recommend doing your research online or coming back to Main Street Mommy once we have our Dining Plan Blog up to help make this decision. The dining plan is not for everyone, and it's okay if it's not for you.
The site also allows you to pre-purchase the memory maker or even book your flight right there. We personally have never used the flight booking, as our drive is only 10 hours, but this is a nice little feature as it allows you to maintain all of your vacation plans in one place. The memory maker, however, is something we recommend purchasing for your vacation, especially if you have more than one park day. The parks have several locations where a cast member is set up taking professional photos, characters have cast members taking photos, and rides have cameras that grab that thrill hill shot. By purchasing the memory maker you get unlimited downloads and print access to these photos. Yes of course you are allowed to use your own camera for photos, but you will be surprised at the difference in quality in the photos a cast member takes and the photos on your phone. Cast members are also able to add cute overlays to make your photos even more memorable.
Ready to book?
Are you ready to book your Disney vacation? Click the button below to be redirected to the Disney Website for booking. We hope that you found this posting to be informative and helpful with booking your Disney Vacation. Make sure to like us on Facebook, and check back for postings that can help you even further! If you have any questions, be sure to leave us a comment our shoot us an email.
Main Street Mommy
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