Mini-trip planned for Spring Break!!

Avatar for gtpoohbear
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Registered: 11-02-2003
Mini-trip planned for Spring Break!!
6
Tue, 07-16-2013 - 5:07pm

Well, after just a few weeks ago saying it would be YEARS before we went back to WDW... a rather substantial mini-trip has evolved for next March. It started out innocently enough... but it always seems that when I try to plan "just a little" Disney... it ends up turning into a LOT of Disney, lol!

We usually ("we" being the kids and myself) go down to Florida for Spring Break to visit my parents. Quite often, we fly into or out of Orlando, since it's a lot cheaper than Ft. Myers, and we can get a direct flight. So this becomes an easy way to try to slip in a mini-trip. Well, one of the things I was a little disappointed that we didn't get to do on our trip in April was meet Stitch, since Owen is a big fan. At one point, I had booked an Ohana breakfast, but cancelled it a few weeks later after deciding it would be too hard to get over to Poly (from YC) for such an early ADR. (This is when I still assumed we'd be making RD every morning, so such things mattered, ha!) It looked like we would have two different chances to meet him in the park, so we decided to do that instead. Well, neither time panned out. He was on the schedule both days, but never appeared.

So... I started thinking that if we flew back out of MCO next March, that maybe we could get a really late breakfast ADR at Ohana and just drive up from Naples early that morning, have breakfast, then fly back in the afternoon. Maybe my parents would even come up there with us. Or... maybe we should just drive up the night before. Lily had been wanting to stay at AoA since it opened, and a suite would easily hold all 5 of us. But... I've mentioned before that I HATE single night hotel stays, it just doesn't seem worth it. Might be asking too much for my parents to come up for the whole weekend though... hmm.

Meanwhile, I had also been exploring the possibility of adding a trip on the beginning of the week to visit the Kennedy Space Center (in Cocoa Beach) and had even convinced DH to come for that part (and fly home as we were driving down to Naples.) Maybe we could do the breakfast on the morning that he left, since he would need to fly out of MCO anyway, then we could drive on down to Naples and not have to worry about coordinating any plans for travel with my parents (since they can be very fickle about such things)

Or maybe, we could still spend a night at AoA, afterall, DH was okay with being gone Sat-Wed, and we didn't need THAT much time in Cocoa Beach. Maybe we could even do two nights there, and the other 2 nights in CB. But then I started looking at Disney's room rates. SurprisedNearly $500/night for a Lion King Suite??? (Lily had no interest in a LM room) We could probably stay in a Deluxe for about the same. I knew Lily had been wanting to stay there forever, but I just couldn't swallow it.

So, I was kind of at a loss for a few days, and thought I should just scrap the whole idea. Or maybe try a Mod, or just stay at Pop and tell DH to deal with it. (He doesn't like the Value Resorts, I was hoping I could pass AoA off as something different, having the suites) Or maybe go back to just doing the breakfast on our way out of town. But then I had an idea.

I had always been curious about DVC rentals, but always afraid to try it for some reason. Kind of on a whim, I put in a request for AKL, not really expecting it to be availible, being spring break week. Oh, and the minimum number of nights I could request was 3...the most I had even considered up to now was 2, though based on the point calculations it would still be cheaper than two nights at AoA. (March 21-24) But it probably wasn't going to work out anyway, right??

Well, as you can probably guess, we ended up getting it!! So... my simple little breakfast at Ohana had turned into a 3-night stay at a Deluxe resort. But this was going to be a simple, relaxing NON-PARK trip. Just swim, watch the animals, eat at all the yummy AKL restaurants that we don't get to very often because it's so far from everything.

I was cool with this plan, until one night a bit later, and I starting thinking how much we didn't get to do at AK in April. Actually, the only things I got to do were Triceratop Spin, the Safari, and Rafiki's Planet Watch - a gross injustice considering how much cool stuff is at the park. So... WHY were we planning to spend 2 whole days being 5 minutes from the park, and NOT go there??? Well, I haven't actually bought the park tickets yet, but that's now the plan. One day at the resort, and one day at the park. That's IT - I'm not going any farther, lol!

Oh, and we'll somehow have to get there Friday night, instead of Saturday. Lily has school on Friday, and I've been considering going back to work this year (if I do, I'd probably have work on Friday as well)... but we'll have to manage an afternoon/evening flight somehow. I'm waiting for SW to release their fares for that week - so far the other airlines are around $600 per person, round-trip - YIKES!!! Need some major pixie-dust from SW, lol!

I hadn't really mentioned much of this to DH until it was already booked, fortunately he seemed fine with it. I was worried it would seem like too much Disney, too soon to him, but if he thinks that it is, he hasn't said so. I'm actually wondering if this isn't a better way for us to "do Disney" - instead of one BIG trip every few years, do one mini-trip every year and just focus on one park. If we didn't fly down there every spring to visit my parents anyway, it wouldn't be practical. But since we do, maybe we should be taking advantage of the location more. It will be interesting to see how this one goes anyway.

And no, Lily STILL isn't getting to stay at AoA, which has now been dangled in front of her TWICE... but I think she's still excited about AKL, especially now that we are going to the park too.

At first I had planned on having a car, since we'll need it to go to Cocoa Beach and then on to Naples, but now I think we will just rent one from the Car Care Center the morning we leave, since it's a lot cheaper to do it that way. So we'll have to take DME from the airport afterall. And I think we are going to skip the DP for the first time - the numbers just don't work out for such a short trip. We'll still do a lot of TS ADRs I'm sure, but I'm thinking about trying to slip in a CS or two and see if DH does okay with it, afterall he liked eating lunch from the snack stands in Epcot, so who knows. This will definitely be a very different trip! I can't make our ADRs until September, but my tentative list includes Boma, Sanaa, Jiko, Ohana, and maybe Yak&Yeti.

Cool Jaime (Me) **** Laughing Brian (DH) **** Smile Lily (DD-11) **** Tongue OutOwen (DS-4)




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Registered: 09-01-2006
Wed, 07-17-2013 - 3:21pm

Awesome! That sounds like a perfect mix of park and down time. I looked into renting DVC points this trip but we are to close to our travel dates for any availability. Can't wait to hear about your trip!

 Melissap.jpg

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Registered: 10-25-2000
Wed, 07-17-2013 - 3:29pm

I had to laugh.  That seems to be how our WDW trips come to be.   I always think it will be years, and somehow. . . .LOL

How cool on renting DVC.    I rented points for our stay at Aulani last month - I have to admit I was nervous, but it really worked out better than I could have imagined.

I'm excited.   A Christmas Disney trip report and now a Spring Break one to look forward to reading.  :D

 

 

  

Avatar for shelb31
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Registered: 08-12-2006
Mon, 07-22-2013 - 5:01pm

Oh wow, that sounds great!  It will be hard to swallow that 1 day park ticket price, though Frown

How did you go about renting DVC points?  Just curious.

Disney 2010
Avatar for gtpoohbear
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Registered: 11-02-2003
Tue, 08-06-2013 - 7:45pm

We rented points from David's DVC Request, it was very easy and I had read a lot of good reviews. The only disadvantage is that you have to prepay for everything up front, and no cancellations or changes. But that's less for me to obsess about for the next few months, I guess, ha!

I know what you mean about the tickets... I'm starting to think that maybe I'll just go ahead and get us a set of 10-day non-expiring tickets. If we do end up making several short trips over the next few years we'll come out well ahead over buying a bunch of single-day tickets. Of course, I know what will happen if we have multi-day tickets in hand, we'll end up wanting to go to a park that first day! Afterall, F&G Fest will be going on, and those snack booths were awfully yummy... I will try to excersize some restraint but I wouldn't be surprised if we leave with only 8 days left on those tickets :)

Still not sure about Friday, our arrival day. I'm waiting to see what SW has to offer for airfare. I did end up going back to work, and won't have Friday off, so the smart thing would be to take the very latest flight out from Colorado Springs (our local airport, about 5 minutes from the school I work at). But that would get us to AKL around midnight. (And those flights are crazy expensive - $350/pp, one-way)

I could just take the day off and go earlier in the day, then we could have a relaxing evening. I guess if SW has some really awesome fares we might do it (they only fly out of Denver, so regardless I'd have to take at least a partial day off anyway to drive up there). If they are just as insanely high priced as everything else, then we'll probably just do the late-local flight. SW should be releasing the fares for our dates in a few weeks, so we'll know soon!

Cool Jaime (Me) **** Laughing Brian (DH) **** Smile Lily (DD-11) **** Tongue OutOwen (DS-4)




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Registered: 10-25-2000
Tue, 08-06-2013 - 10:00pm

Just an FYI, we rented points from Dave's for Aulani.  And we had no issues at all with it.   I managed to get a 2 bedroom/2 bathroom villa with an ocean view for what a regular room would have cost me.    Next time we go to WDW I may consider doing this again, so I'd be very interested how it all works/plays out for you on buying the tickets separately.

 

 

  

Avatar for gtpoohbear
iVillage Member
Registered: 11-02-2003
Thu, 08-08-2013 - 7:21pm

Yeah I've never bought tickets seperately, they've always been on our package. I'm especially nervous about it with all the FP+ stuff coming out, I hope we don't end up regretting doing it this way! I'll probably get them from UCT, since it is a little cheaper, and I don't think you can even add the no-expire option if you get them direct from Disney. Well you could probably add it once you are there, but it's not an option when you order them online anyway.

Cool Jaime (Me) **** Laughing Brian (DH) **** Smile Lily (DD-11) **** Tongue OutOwen (DS-4)