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Have I covered everything?

Walt Disney World: Planning my once in a lifetime trip! 2 weeks staying in Disney but want to do Orlando Flexi-ticket as well, have I covered everything?

From Claire French
Posted February 1, 2011 at 7:46 AM
I am going to disney on 23rd September 2011 for 2 weeks we are landing in sanford and staying at Port Orleans Riverside. My husband and I are both 25 with no children. We want to do everything where possible.

First of all we have opted for DDP with 1 quick meal and a sit down meal for our stay. We are planning to save up sit down meals we dont use (at other parks) for signiture dining. How much spending money do you think I will need if food sorted? I was thinking around $2000.

Second I was hoping whether you think my plan is feasible. I have based it on tips for avoiding the busiest days for most of the parks from a website but without missing any shows/parades i.e Magic Kingdom.

Day 1 Fri: Arrive 1.30pm- Downtown disney and settle in
Day2 Sat: Magic Kingom
Day 3 Sun: Animal Kingdom
Day 4 Mon: Seaworld
Day 5 Tues:Blizzard Beach
Day 6 Wed: Busch Gardens
Day 7 Thurs:Islands of Adventure
Day8 Fri:Hollywood Studios
Day 9 Sat: Magic Kingdom
Day 10 Sun:Universal Studio
Day 11 Mon:Relax/shopping
Day 12 Tues:Wet n Wild
Day 13 Wed: Epcot
Day 14 Thurs: Aquatica
Day 15 Fri: Sanford Flight 04.30pm

Due to our age we couldnt hire a car without paying stupid money for extra insurance. As we are only looking after ourselves is this possible (no looking after children my niece leaves me wanting to sleep for a day after babysitting)?
You suggestions would be wonderful!
Many Thanks


Comments in chronological order. Most recent at the bottom. Scroll down to respond.

From Donna McKay
Posted February 1, 2011 at 10:15 AM
I would visit EPCOT earlier in your trip as you may well want to make a repeat visit and won't have time left if you are only going near the end of your trip. Plenty of "grown up" eateries and experiences to be had there

You don't say how far a journey you have to endure to get to Orlando. Is jet lag likely to be an issue?

From Anthony Murphy
Posted February 1, 2011 at 10:54 AM
I thought 25 year olds can rent cars without paying out of the wazoo. I am in for a suprise!!

As for your list, I think it is near perfect! Unless you really really want to do it, Wet and Wild is not nessisary if going to Blizzard Beach and Aquatica. Blizzard Beach and Aquatica are two of the better water parks in FL. Also, remember that the water parks tend to close a bit earlier (like 6), especially Blizzard Beach so I would consider doing something else at night (might I suggest the Hoop de Do?- two credits on the dining plan). I would replace Wet and Wild with EPCOT, especially being 25 and on the dining plan, because its a park that has lots to offer for our age, the best food options for the dining plan, and lots to see and do. Also, Busch Gardens is kinda far away from the rest of the parks (1 hour if traffic is kind). Not saying it isn't a great park, but many of its charm can be found at AK. Still, great coasters if you are into that kind of thing.

As for the dining plan, be prepared to eat TONS. Its one of the biggest values at WDW, but they stuff your face! However, you have seen the advantage of signature dining and two credits. My favorite signature Dining is at Yachtsmen Steakhouse which is a bone fide fancy steakhouse with aged meats. Being from Chicago, known for their steakhouses, its the real deal! Hoop de do (mentioned above) is also a good option with its all you can eat (and drink) deal.

But I will say, you did your homework and, in my opinion, one of my favorite plans I have seen on the site!

From Thomas Caselli
Posted February 1, 2011 at 12:19 PM
It sounds like you will be running around crazy. You are 25 so that's ok, I guess. The water parks that I would do would be Blizzard Beach and Typhoon Lagoon. I wouldn't do any others, but that's me. With doing everything else it would seem crazy to go to Busch Gardens. That is a 3-4 hour round trip from Disney area.

From Terri Pierce
Posted February 1, 2011 at 2:56 PM
I wouldn't do Wet n Wild or Aquatica. Ive been to both and didn't like them so much. They fit the mold for water parks and are nothing special. Busch Gardens is quite a ways away and if done at all would be best to do on the end of a vacation. Hotels around the area are super cheap so you could just stay there overnight there and probably end up saving money. You've got a packed schedule and I'm only 20. If you are anything like me you're going to be exhausted at the end of each day. Esp in Sept weather down here. I would recommend-

Day 1 Fri: Arrive 1.30pm- Downtown disney and settle in
Day2 Sat: Magic Kingom
Day 3 Sun: Animal Kingdom
Day 4 Mon: Seaworld
Day 5 Tues:Blizzard Beach
Day 6 Wed: Relax- City Walk/Shopping
Day 7 Thurs:Islands of Adventure
Day8 Fri:Hollywood Studios
Day 9 Sat: Magic Kingdom Hopper/Mickey’s Halloween Party
(If it’s started yet)
Day 10 Sun:Universal Studio (Halloween Horrors?)
Day 11 Mon:Relax/shopping
Day 12 Tues:Epcot
Day 13 Wed: Drive to Busch
Day 14 Thurs: Busch Gardens
Day 15 Fri: Sanford Flight 04.30pm

I think that covers everything without moving certain things so you wont miss fantasmic if you've considered that.

Don't forget to look out for Halloween Horror nights at Universal Studios. On these nights US will close VERY early to set up. You might even consider doing this is you like super trilling Halloween stuff. You could putt around City Walk or sit down and eat inbetween closing and opening.

Also Mickey's Halloween Party should be started or starting if you haven't considered this. I would attend this instead of an extra day at MK since you will get into the park at 4PM with only limited crowds. We had a BLAST last year. Got to ride space mountain 3 times in a row with less than a 5 minute wait!

If I think of anything else I'll post later. I hope I helped!

From Terri Pierce
Posted February 1, 2011 at 3:10 PM
Oh! Downtown Disney. If you are wanting to eat at TREX make a reservation up to 180 days before. Rainforest this isn't needed anymore.

If you're wanting to eat anywhere special at Epcot you can do the same. And I will have to agree with the others and say do this earlier in the trip

From Tony Duda
Posted February 1, 2011 at 5:29 PM
Epcot Food and Wine Festival starts September 30 and I suggest that you go that day since it is a really big event with live concerts every day. You have time to fine tune your itinerary.

Does the flex ticket allow for multi-park (park hopper) visits at Walt Disney World? If so, finishing several days with a couple of hours at Epcot is a good way to go.

From Anthony Murphy
Posted February 1, 2011 at 7:23 PM
I think flex ticket is for the non Disney parks. If the food and wine festival is going on at epcot, do it!

From Derek Morse
Posted February 2, 2011 at 1:12 PM
In my experience, no matter what time of year it is, Magic Kingdom is at its busiest on Saturdays, so you may want to tweak that portion of your itinerary. But, that is just my opinion, others may have had different experiences.

From Lauren Hayhurst
Posted February 3, 2011 at 6:47 AM
Oh My Gosh. You will be extremely exhausted. I think it is important to weigh up the pros and cons of 'fitting everything in' and reducing your level of enjoyment through being so tired. It really is important to have at least 2 or 3 'pool days' as my family calls them... Shopping / relaxing / Downtown Disney / Oldtown / Having a lie in - it is a holiday after all. But then, as many people say, you will need a holiday after a holiday in Florida! It is just the nature of it!

Also I would recommend only doing one water park rather than three - they offer pretty much the same experience. And if you were going to choose one, I would recommend Typhoon Lagoon, which you haven't actually included. In my experiences Blizzard Beach is concrete, plain, not as lush (i.e. foliage / greenery) as Typhoon Lagoon. I have also heard poor reviews of Aquatica from family and friends - my husband, who is a travel consultant, has also been told negative things about it by his clients.

But apart from that your interary looks brill! And you could always add the chill factor by arriving at parks at the more leisurely time of 10 - 11am instead of racing for rope drop everyday. Ooh, and I also recommend eating in Morrocco in EPCOT and for a good non-Disney meal out - Thai Thani on International Drive. Amazing Thai food, as good if not better than the food I ate whilst travelling in Thailand! Have a great trip!

From Tom Rigg
Posted February 3, 2011 at 9:06 AM
Yuo simply cannot do Busch Gardens if you don't have a rental. Check Enterprise, they will rent to as young as 20 and I think the extra insurance is optional.

I would agree with the poster above about skipping Wet and Wild. Quite frankly its a little dingy. Stick with the Disney Waterparks, Typhoon Lagoon is by far the best watr park I've been to, and I've been to Schlitterbahn. Instead take a day and explore all of the deluxe resorts at Disney. Hopping on a monorail and hanging out at the bars at the hotels along that route can be really fun and relaxing. Also, you should check into some of the unique opportunities at Disney, if you are ogng to be down there for two weeks, like boating, and or one of the behind the scenes tours.

And I agree that you should do Halloween Horror Nights and the Food and Wine Festival. Halloween Horror Nights is the best Halloween event in the country, if that is something you are into, but even that early in the season make sure to get express pass tickets. You can do US and HHN in the same day with a break in between for dinner.

Food and Wines is great AND you can use the snakc from your DDP for the different food stands. But I would bring extra money for that too. If you do the Food and Wine Festival, definitely plan 2 days at EPCOT as it will be crowded for the festival and you just won't have enough time to do everything if you don't.

From Pyra-Danny V
Posted February 8, 2011 at 11:21 AM
NO need to rent a car. There's a bus that leaves Seaworld DAILY that goes straight to Busch Gardens! Normally arrives at the park 30 mins after park opening and leaves 30 minutes before the park closes... but you must reserve ahead of time.

$10 to ride it round-trip... or free if you have the Flex Ticket. FYI ^_^

IMO you have a crazy, packed schedule and all I see are theme parks, theme parks, theme parks!!
... btw I'm a theme-park-worshipping 25-year-old and even with that I'm suggesting to take a step back and see what more Central Florida offers besides theme parks-- not because you'll get tired, but it ALL STARTS TO BLEND TOGETHER after a while.

Looking at the stars from Kennedy Space? A Cirque show? Beaches? Kayaking? (I was told that kayaking is the true test that will make or break a couple lol) or even seeing what's on display at the convention center.

From Anthony Murphy
Posted February 8, 2011 at 11:33 AM
While I like your iternerary, Kennedy Space Center is actually pretty cool too!

From Ray Schroeder
Posted February 8, 2011 at 11:55 AM
If you're able to rent a car, and you're going to Busch Gardens, stop off at the Hard Rock Casino. A nice diversion with no kids.

From Cara C
Posted February 8, 2011 at 9:41 PM
So jealous of your trip…sounds like a great plan. My boyfriend and I (we are 24&28) have had annual passes for 2 years, we spend about two weekends a month in Orlando.
A few suggestions:
- Waterparks: Typhoon lagoon is my favorite and Blizzard beach is a close second. Aquatica is fun, the river rapids and a few of the slides are different from the rides you will find at the Disney water parks. Skip Wet and Wild.
- Epcot is our favorite thing to do, we make sure to go at some point during every visit. We just like to walk around the world showcase and eat and drink around the world. Also eating at any of the restaurants in the World Showcase is always fun. YOU MUST DO THE FOOD AND WINE FESTIVAL. It starts the end of September. This is an awesome event that only lasts about 8 weeks in the fall. Go during the week, the lines at the booths can get long and the world showcase can become very crowded. It can get expensive but I know you can use you dining plan snack options at most of the booths.
- We love Jellyrolls at Boardwalk. It is a dueling piano bar – lots of fun! It opens at 8, closes at 2 and cover is $10 per person. It is a mixed crowd and fills up by 10-11. Always a must.
- We also think stopping by for a glass of wine and sushi roll at the sushi bar in the Swan hotel is a good way to relax. They have karaoke most nights starting at 9pm.
- Mickey’s very scary Halloween party – I love this event. I had a hard time talking my boyfriend into this one – he said we were too old. The event does have lots of kids but also lots of adults (in costumes too). The Halloween parade is the best parade you will see at any Disney park or special event. The fireworks are great too!
- I think your plan does have a lot of room for rest and I don’t think you will be too exhausted. Universal Studios will not take a whole day, water parks will not take all day.

From Samantha McCrae
Posted February 9, 2011 at 4:34 AM
I think your days are pretty packed - This is what I would do if I were you (the way i would do it)

Day 1 Fri: Arrive 1.30pm - Downtown disney and settle in
Day 2 Sat: Seaworld
Day 3 Sun: Animal Kingdom
Day 4 Mon: Magic Kingdom
Day 5 Tues: Rest
Day 6 Wed: Islands Of Adventure (you could also possibly do universal in the same day?)
Day 7 Thurs: Hollywood Studios
Day 8 Fri: Typhoon Lagoon
Day 9 Sat: Rest
Day 10 Sun: Universal Studio (HHN)
Day 11 Mon: Epcot
Day 12 Tues: (Anywhere you want to go again)
Day 13 Wed: Rest
Day 14 Thurs: (Anywhere you want to go again)
Day 15 Fri: Sanford Flight 04.30pm

I would leave out Busch Gardens, unless you are a BIG coaster person - then you can arrage a bus through seaworld
and most of the water parks are pretty much the same - Typhoon is the best (so i've heard)
and you NEED to take more time out to rest as you need to see other things in Florida - take a trip to the everglades, shop, eat, relax, swim, space centre
SO much more to do than just theme parks :)

From Joshua Counsil
Posted February 9, 2011 at 3:24 PM
I had a plan similar to yours two summers ago. We were all 21 at the time and managed to see all the biggies, save for Wet and Wild and Aquatica.

I'll only offer one piece of advice: on Disney days, go back to your hotel room in the afternoon for a nap, shower, swim, snack, and/or cocktails, then return to the parks when the temperature is cooler and the crowds are lighter. This will help to preserve your sanity.

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