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NWR: Disney Peepz Come In!

I think DH and I are going to plan an anniversary trip to Disney.  We're not determined to go in August though because we have other suff going on.  I think we want to stay at one of the Disney hotels.

Anyone get deals/discounts emailed to them that they can share?
Does Disney have a shuttle of some sort from the airport so we can skip the rental car?
Do you recommend a particular time/event that we should see?
Do you recommend a particular Disney hotel to stay at?

Thanks for the help!

Re: NWR: Disney Peepz Come In!

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    edited December 2011
    I get some emails I forward them to you ask I get them.
    If you stay in property there is a shuttle from airport to hotel and back.
    I'm sure Heather will report with a ton of into.

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    amy727amy727 member
    First Anniversary First Comment
    edited December 2011
    I'm not like the other Disney experts here, but I went about 2 years ago.  Disney does have a shuttle from airport... it's called the Magical Express.  We ended up taking a cab from the airport to our hotel because the line was crazy.  We did use it from the hotel to the airport though. 

    We stayed at the Port Orleans hotel.  All of their hotels have shuttles to and from the parks.  Port Orleans also had a boat that you could take to downtown Disney (instead of the bus) which was nice. 
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    edited December 2011
    I loved going when it was decorated for Christmas! We went for Thanksgiving in 09.

    Food and Wine Festival is in the fall and supposed to be a great time to go.
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    amy727amy727 member
    First Anniversary First Comment
    edited December 2011

    oh I forgot to add that one year when I was younger we went in October.  It was great because most kids were still in school and the weather was still nice. 

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    edited December 2011
    I went on spring break when I was in college, and we stayed at one of the All Star resorts.  It was nice staying on a Disney resort, because there are shuttles to all of the parks every day.

    I have no idea who we went through, because one of the other people I went with (14 total) actually organized the whole thing.  I just gave them all my money.  But I highly recommend staying at a Disney hotel for the simple fact that you won't need a car at all.

    I think AAA always has discounts for Disney.
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    edited December 2011
    Ooodsie is out this week, but you should email her, she can get great deals with her timeshare, etc.
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    edited December 2011
    Ah, I do have AAA but forgot to see if I could use that discount.  Thanks, RA.

    Cara - my ILs do timeshare too, but I think DH wants to stay at a Disney hotel.  I don't think that's included in timeshare, but I'll see if ooodsie can look into it.  Thanks!
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    dibsontopdibsontop member
    First Anniversary 5 Love Its First Comment
    edited December 2011

    Check out MouseSavers.com and UndercoverTourist.com too


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    amy727amy727 member
    First Anniversary First Comment
    edited December 2011
    I would suggest staying at a Disney hotel.  You get the free shuttle and extended park hours.  Each day there is one park that opens an hour early for hotel guests and another that stays open an extra hour. 

    If by any chance you know of anyone that works there you can get a great discount.  My brother's gf at the time of our last trip was doing an internship there and got us 40% off our room. 
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    edited December 2011
    My coworker's son is interning there this summer.... hmmmm?
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    amy727amy727 member
    First Anniversary First Comment
    edited December 2011

    MH-  When does he start because that may work.  It saved us so much money. 

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    edited December 2011
    He starts soon I think.  I'll check into it.

    Thanks for all the suggestions ladies!  Keep 'em coming!
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    Jesster153Jesster153 member
    First Comment
    edited December 2011
    Ditto to the above about staying at a Disney hotel. They also do great packages where you can get a meal plan also which can help especially with breakfast and such.

    I've stayed at Port Orleans-(both of them) and from what I remember they were both reasonably priced and nice. I'd stay away from any of the All Star Hotels (sports, music, movies, etc.) since we went there for our senior trip in hs and stayed there and I remember it being all families with little kids and then high school seniors haha

    I hear the Food and Wine Festival is awesome-- thats like end of Sept- November.
    We may be going in December with DH's family so it will be all decorated for christmas!

    Heather is def the expert though ;)
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    LadyJ10LadyJ10 member
    First Comment
    edited December 2011

    They do have two timeshare properties "on property" that are part of the Disney Resort - Old Key West and the Boardwalk. We stayed at Old Key West last time and I enjoyed it, but the Boardwalk is more centrally located. They do the buses and everything else just like the hotels on property.

    As for hotels, I loved the Yacht Club when we stayed there - they also do the buses to the parks and a boat (or walk) to Epcot and Hollywood Studios. I think it's one of the more expensive ones, though, and I don't know how much you're looking to spend.

    When we were planning our last trip, I checked out MouseSavers.com and they had good advice and a few deals, but nothing huge. Disney keeps a pretty tight hold on their prices and doesn't discount much!

    That being said, I've heard from a few friends that they did the Dining Plan -- LRM, any advice on this? They seemed to think it was worth it, but we decided not to last time since we were staying somewhere with a kitchen.

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    SteveandKrisSteveandKris member
    First Comment
    edited December 2011
    In Response to Re: NWR: Disney Peepz Come In!:
    [QUOTE]They do have two timeshare properties "on property" that are part of the Disney Resort - Old Key West and the Boardwalk. We stayed at Old Key West last time and I enjoyed it, but the Boardwalk is more centrally located. They do the buses and everything else just like the hotels on property. As for hotels, I loved the Yacht Club when we stayed there - they also do the buses to the parks and a boat (or walk) to Epcot and Hollywood Studios. I think it's one of the more expensive ones, though, and I don't know how much you're looking to spend. When we were planning our last trip, I checked out MouseSavers.com and they had good advice and a few deals, but nothing huge. Disney keeps a pretty tight hold on their prices and doesn't discount much! That being said, I've heard from a few friends that they did the Dining Plan -- LRM, any advice on this? They seemed to think it was worth it, but we decided not to last time since we were staying somewhere with a kitchen.
    Posted by LadyJ10[/QUOTE]

    Recently, a third was opened as well, its next to the Contemporary Resort (and the name is escaping me) but you can use the monorail.  There is a fourth (either open or in the process) with an African theme as well. 

    Use AAA, I'm pretty sure the only larger discount is through the military.  We are doing the dining plan for the first time with FSS this June, I'll let you know how it plays out - I think I like the idea of being pre-paid.  You can make reservations either way 180 days in advance and SHOULD do so if you want things like the California Grill and other signature resturants.  You can always add the dining plan later as well.
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    LadyJ10LadyJ10 member
    First Comment
    edited December 2011
    SandK, thanks for reminding me! I forgot that they were opening timeshares next to the Contemporary and next to Animal Kingdom!

    I also think that some of the villas near Wilderness Lodge are timeshare!

    But if the timeshare thing doesn't work out, there are plenty of hotel options on property!
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    CaitC21CaitC21 member
    First Comment
    edited December 2011
    The last time I was there was my senior trip and we stayed at an all star resort.  Nice but the pp is correct it was a lot of families and seniors, but not at all a bad time!

    Ive stayed at all stars not on senior trip and had a great time.  I really dont spend much time at the hotel when I am in Disney anyway.
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    edited December 2011
    You should seriously wait to post this stuff until the evening when I'm around :P

    mousesvers is your best bet in terms of learning about discounts.  If there is a promo going around, you will for sure hear about it from them.  An easy way to get updates is by friending MouseSavers on Facebook.  Additionally, they have a monthly newsletter with exra disounts, as well.  Definitely worth signing up for.

    If you don't mind spam, I would also sign up for as many Disney e-mails as you can.  Many times Disney will send out person-specific PIN codes that can only be used by the person to whom they were sent - they will verify name and address over the phone when you try to use it.  I have recently gotten ones from percentage off rooms and free dining plans when you buy room-only packages. Unfortunately the codes only ever work for certain dates and there is no rhyme or reason to who they send to or why...but your best bet is to just sign up. 

    If timing is no issue for you, the food and wine fesitval in the fall is prime time to visit.  Crowds are low and Epcot has awesome stuff going on for gornwups.  But really...there is no bad time to visit Disney :)  I can give some advice on touring plans to help manage the crowds. 

    If you stay on Disney's property, like others have said, you can use Magical Express free of charge to get you to and from the airport.  We had no problems doing this whatsoever during our honeymoon trip.  However, if you want to save a few bucks as a hotel I will recommend the Swan and Dolphin, where we are staying this trip,  It's not owned by Disney (it's owned by Sheraton - so no Magical Express),  but you are allowed to use the Disney busses just like a WDW resort guest and the location/amentieis can't be beat for the price.  Epcot is walking distance from your door.  This will be our first stay there...so i can report back with more detail about how we liked it come August.  Personally, for two adults looking for an anniversary getaway, I wouldn't recommend the value resorts.  DH and I stayed at the all-star sports on our HM because the goal was adding on time in Disney cheaply and the experience was way different than when I stayed there on a trip in HS.  If you want to do a Disney property but can't do a deluxe resort (staying at Animal Kingdom Lodge is my dream!), I would recommend Port Orleans Riverside or, at a slightly pricier miderate level, Fort Wilderness. 

    Hope this gives you a good start...hit me up on Facebook if you want me to ramble at you some more :D
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    edited December 2011
    And to LadyJ about the dining plan - it can be a terrific deal or a horrible one, depending on your eating habits.  The standard dining plan is now about $45 (maybe closer to 50 now) per day per person.  It includes one table service meal (sit-down restaurant, one counter-service meal, and one snack (basically anything in the park that costs under $4 - ice cream, drinks, popcorn, bottled water, whatever) per day, per person.  The catch is that all the meals include an entree, a dessert, and a non-alocholic beverage, but no booze or appetizers.  They also do not include tax or tip.  (There is also a counter-service meal that includes two counter service meals and one snack per day and the deluxe plan which includes two table-service meals per day and DOES give you app and boze options...but price varies accordingly.) 

    Now, DH and I are big appetizer people who like to have a drink with dinner, but we rarely ever get dessert.  Therefore, for us, the dining plan would just not be economical because we would constantly want to be paying out of pocket for extras..not to mention for breakfast a lot of days.  Others swear by it because it matches up better with their eating habits, and because it allows you to pre-pay for all your food before the trip as part of your vacation package. For us, however, add in the fact that we always want to eat at one or two "signature" restaurants (which cost two TS meals per person)...and the cost out of pocket quickly shrinks below what we would pay for the dining plan plus our extras.  A good way to gauge if it's a good idea for you is to literally mock up a day or two of eating - look up menus online at a couple of restuarants, pick what you'd order, and tally up your bill.  If it comes to above dinig plan cost..that's clearly the way to go.  For us, it just isn't.  For our friends who are DVC members and love dessert/don't drink, it always is a great deal. 

    Now, add in that sometimes Disney runs free dining plan promotions with the cost of a rack-rate room and park tickets...and we have another conversation entirely! 

    Ultimate irony: I just received a free dining plan PIN code in my inbox as a typed this.  Good for arriveals any day this summer. 
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    CaitC21CaitC21 member
    First Comment
    edited December 2011
    I got a dining code today to.
    I wish FI and I could swing a trip to Disney before the HM...
    Sadly I dont think it can happen

    I cant wait to plan ours :-)
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    edited December 2011
    I am an absolute Disney junkie! In fact, that's where we got engaged in January! I know all the little secrets (including how to stay in one of those timeshares for a fraction of the price- there are 7 timeshare resorts on Disney property, by the way). If you go to Disney, you have to stay on property- no ifs, ands, or buts about it. The benefits (buses/tram/boats, Magical Express, Extra Magic Hours (which are actually 1 extra hour in the morning and 3 extra hours at night), and just the overall atmosphere) far outweigh any additional cost, although if you do it right, there shouldn't be much additional cost anyway. We stayed in Disney's Old Key West last time (a deluxe villa category hotel with a little kitchenette) for less than it would have cost at a moderate resort (~760 for a week in a studio villa that accommodates 4 people). You can do something called "renting DVC (Disney Vacation Club) points" which is basically paying the owner of a Disney timeshare a certain amount per point to book you a reservation using their points. Each reservation is worth a certain amount of points (ours was 63 total) and the cost is usually around $12-14 per point. If you go to a forum (I recommend mouseowners.com) and check out their rental boards, you can post specifying when you want to go, where you would like to stay, etc. and people will get back to you with offers. There are ways to make sure that the people are legit: first of all, make sure they're frequent posters; secondly, check with the Florida comptroller to make sure they really do own DVC (there's a website for that); thirdly, see how they've interacted with other renters and check out their references. You can do a contract, too, if you want. We rented with nocknock on the mouseowners board and she was phenomenal! Saved us a bundle. It's also important to note that you can make these reservations up to 11 months in advance. And yes, you can utilize the Magical Express to get to and from the airport. They even get your bags for you when you land and deliver them right to your room- no need to go to baggage claim! When you leave, you can pay for and check your bags at the resort if you're flying a popular airline... they take care of the rest.

    The Dining Plan was a fantastic value for us. My fiancé is a chef, and we're both foodies. We love to eat, and we wanted for absolutely nothing with the dining plan. We got more than our money's worth, believe me!

    If you have any questions, feel free to PM me! Good luck Cool
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    edited December 2011
    Also, I second what someone above said about Mousesavers and Undercover Tourist. Their ticket prices can't be beat... and believe me I've looked. I'm also a AAA member, and their prices were higher than UT. If you go to mousesavers.com and sign up for their newsletter, they'll send you a link to a discounted Undercover Tourist ticket website (even more discounted than they usually are!) just for mousesavers members. The newsletter has other great deals, too.

    Here's a bunch of links for you:
    http://www.mousesavers.com/dvc.html#rentpoints (for more info on renting)
    http://www.mouseowners.com/ (to find someone to rent with)
    http://dvcnews.com/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=127&Itemid=105 (to see the points needed for each of the 7 resorts, which differ depending on the season)
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