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Brian Bennett

WDW Trip Planning Guide Reader Feedback

by Brian Bennett

8/27/01

Q.

Chris writes: Brian, I love to read the reports that you post everyday. But today you posted two reports from 1999. The other reports were much more current. It seems to me a lot of things could have and did change at these resorts in two years. Well that all. Just wanted to voice my concern. Thanks and keep up the great work.

A.

Chris,

I agree that the 1999 reviews were a bit dated. However, I am only able to post what people send me. I would love to have more and more folks get involved in sending trip reports, restaurant reviews, offsite hotel reviews, and Disney resort reviews so MousePlanet can provide even more opinions and information.


On the side, I'm ALWAYS looking for new trip reports and restaurant and resort reviews!  If you're willing to do so, please submit one yourself and help out!

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Q.

Tamara asks: Hi there!! I am trying to plan a trip down to Disney for the teddy bear show in October. Any idea when the dates will be confirmed?

A.

Since I had no idea (I've not seen any dates yet, either), I asked some other folks for help.  Here are the answers:

Sue Holland

I've got no idea exactly when the doll/teddy bear thing is. If the person is a collector, I can't imagine there aren't related websites, or she might find the dates from one of the many *big* doll/teddy bear makers who will be attending. I'm sure they're scheduled far in advance. Sue (collector of DVC points...that's all I need <g>)

Mike Scopa

I haven't seen any official confirmation for anything in October except the events scheduled for the 100th celebration of Walt's birthday.

If need be I would call down and try to get confirmation over the phone.  These minor events aren't usually confirmed until they are within the 4-6 week window.

A WDW Cast Member

Right now there is no information available on the teddy bear/doll convention at Epcot, which is really odd since we already have November dates for the Food & Wine Festival and we have dates for Super Soap Weekend next year.  As soon as the info is available I will let you know

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Q.

Jan writes:  Hi Brian, I listed your parents home in Clinton Township and have received many appreciated referrals from them, Well in our talks, they have mentioned your site a long time ago. I was visiting back when it was the DVClubber site. Well, we LOVE Disney and try to go as often as we can. I visit your site even if we are not planning on going just to see what's going on!!! Its great. Keep up the good work. I love to read about everyone's travels and experiences.

Well, we have some friends that have small children and want us to go with them to Disneyworld. The problem is they are leaving the day after Thanksgiving and staying until the following Saturday. I think that those first few days are going to be CRAZY!!!!!. Could you let me know your thoughts?

My opinion is, we can go any time, why not the following week when we won't have to "waste 3 days" because of the crowds.

The last time we were there, Universal only had the one park, so we want to spent a day or 2 there. Any comments on that?

Because of the kids they are staying at All star Movies, haven't been there, although we were are sports a long time ago, any suggestions! Is it laid out the same, Should we ask to be closer to the food court, I know with the sports complex that was helpful! Please let me know, Thanks again for the great info!!!! Say HI to your Mom & Dad, I hope all is well!!!!!!!!!!!!

A.

Thanks for the kind note, Jan. :)

I agree that the weekend immediately following Thanksgiving is typically a pretty busy time. However, this year attendance is way down at WDW, so perhaps it won't be as bad as you're thinking. In any case, you'll definitely get to enjoy the Christmas decorations that go up at that time of year so the visit will be memorable in any case.

My only comments on Universal is that the Studios (original) park is really much more oriented towards teens and adults than families with younger children. Islands of Adventure has some more stuff that is targeted towards younger kids, but for the most part, USF is a teen/adult resort.

All Star Movies Resort is a fun place. I'd suggest going to MousePlanet's WDW Trip Planning Guide Fast Facts Page on the resort, and clicking on the map to get your bearings. You'll also find some suggestions about room locations.

The All Star Resorts all have a similar feel, and the room layouts are pretty much identical. However, the actual layout of the various guest buildings relative to the central resort complex varies at each resort. Asking for a room that is close to Cinema Hall may be a good idea.

Mom and Dad are joining Barb and the boys and me in a few weeks for our next trip to see the Mouse.  :)

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Q.

Tom asks:  Brian, I've noticed that the dates and prices for Mickeys Very Merry Christmas Party (MVMCP) were recently released. However I have a few questions that I couldn't find the answers to... hopefully you can help.
  1. What are the rules for getting in to MVMCP? I thought I read some where that you had to have gone to a Disney Park the day you want to attend MVMCP. So that means you pay the $40 - $50 to get in to the park and then another $40 for a MVMCP ticket.... which comes out to about $80 -$90 per adult (rough estimate). Is this right??
  2. Is there an attendance limit? If so, what is it?
  3. Why should I attend MVMCP? I mean is there anything specific that I will not get to experience if I don't attend MVMCP. I noticed MVMCP only lasts until mid-December. Does that mean that when MVMCP ends that they stop doing those special Christmas events (which would make no sense) or does that mean that they just include it in the everyday Magic Kingdom experience (which makes more sense)???
  4. I read that the Magic Kingdom closes early on MVMCP days. Do the sit down restaurants close early also? I'd love to make a priority seating reservation for the down time so I'd already be in the park when they reopened.
  5. Are there any specials for AP holders?

Thanks in advance for your help.

A.

Tom,

Advanced MVMCP tickets cost $33/$23 (adult/child). You do not need to attend a park earlier in the day, but I do believe that only WDW resort guests can buy tickets.

You're right about attendance being limited to keep the crowds down, but I don't think you'll notice a big difference in crowd levels versus early/mid-morning levels.

MVMCP is really an atmosphere event. The two major changes are the decorations (including "snow" on Main Street") in the park and the holiday-oriented shows that are performed.

As far as the schedule goes, you're right... the MVMCP is run until mid-month, but shuts down when the regular holiday crowds start up. The even can only be experienced in late November and early December. MVMCP is NOT included in the regular schedule later in the month.

The park does, indeed, close down early so that the decorations can be put up for the party. After the park clears out and the park is prepared, ticketed guests can enter for the MVMCP a couple of hours later. The restaurants close early, too. As I stated, the entire park is cleared of day guests before the special event, so you can't just stay in the park until it starts. You have to leave the park and return.

Nope, no AP discounts... but there are package deals that you can buy that include MVMCP along with accommodations, but you won't really save money over an ala carte deal.

-

Q.

Sue writes: Do you have email addresses for any of the Disney world resorts, specifically the Polynesian. Also, do you know of any significant discounts for this resort?

A.

Sue,

There are email addresses for individual cast members at WDW, but the resorts -- to the best of my knowledge -- do not maintain general ones.

You'd be best served by using the phone or fax... you can get those numbers from the MousePlanet WDW Trip Planning Guide's Fast Facts Page on the Polynesian Resort.

I know that WDW resorts are offering lots of discounts right now because guest levels are way down. However, I don't know of any specific discounts for the Polynesian (I just don't keep that close tabs on it).

-

Q.

It's been a long time since I addressed this very, very common question... so here's a re-run question and answer.  :)

Diane asks: Ok Brian, It seems the princess breakfast is a hot item!  I'm bringing my five year old to Disney World October 15, and 16 and of course what she can't wait to do is have breakfast with the Cinderella, Snow White, Belle, and all their friends.

Unfortunately, I was not one of the lucky callers who was able to get through sixty days before in the first three minutes.

So, what can I do to get reservations? Any other ways into the castle for breakfast would be greatly appreciated.

A.

Diane,

You might want to check out MousePlanet's Walt Disney World Restaurant Resource character meal page, which gives a lot of information about the various character meals.

The only way I know of to get reservations at Cinderella's Royal Table is to keep trying. There is no "secondary market," but cancellations do occur. The best advice, which won't really help you unfortunately, is the following (which is on the priority seating page of MousePlanet's WDW Restaurant Resource):

"If you want to have a character meal at one of the more popular venues (Cinderella's Royal Table, which offers a very few seats for the "Once Upon a Time" character breakfast, for example) you really do need to get on the phone five minutes before 7:00am eastern time and start calling (407) WDW-DINE over and over until you get a receptionist. In fact, you really should do that exactly 60 days prior to the date you want. Even if you do this, there is no guarantee that you'll get a priority seating, but it's your best bet. If you call any other day (within 60 days of the date you want) you may be able to snap up a cancellation, but your odds get worse as you get closer to the day."

For you, I'd suggest you keep calling...you never know when someone else may cancel!

-

Q.

Jennifer writes: My boyfriend and I are taking a trip to Walt Disney World in November. I haven't been there since I was 7 years old, now I'm 20. I was wondering, what is your personal opinion to attractions and shows I definitely should not miss at the parks?

A.

Jennifer,

That is a very difficult question to answer, because your tastes and mine might not be lined up at all!

I'd suggest that you go to MousePlanet's WDW Trip Planning Guide index page on the parks.

There you'll find links to attractions lists for each and every park. You and your boyfriend can go through those lists and decide which ones interest you the most!

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Q.

Amy asks: Do you know how soon will the dates for the 2002 National Car Rental Golf Tournament (PGA Tour) held at Disney World be known? I know this year it is Oct 18-21. I couldn't find the 2002 date anywhere. (I checked the PGA Tour website, too.) If you have any ideas of where I could find that info, I'd sure appreciate it. But, if not, that's OK too!

A.

Amy,

Dates for special events aren't usually made available until just a few months before the event, believe it or not! Actually, your idea of going to the PGA site would have been my best suggestion, because the PGA would announce the dates long before Disney would bother to do so...

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Q.

Kimi writes: I've been visiting MousePlanet for a few months now. It's a wonderful website and has given me quite a few travel tips for both WDW and the Disney Cruise Line.

I have a question about one of the packages Disney is advertising in their catalog. It's 4 days/3 nights at an All-Star Resort and unlimited admission to all four of the parks for $288 per person. Is this a good deal? It's only good in November and December and I'm wondering if I should take advantage of it.

A.

Kimi,

I just purchased four-day park hopper passes for my parents for just under $200 each! To add three nights of accommodations for just under $60 per night for about $20 less than the normal "value season" rates. That's a good deal, in my book.

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In the last edition of "Notes From the World," MousePlanet reader Dennis shared his aggravation at Disney's policy on not allowing minors into Pleasure Island without a parent.

Here, former Pleasure Island Cast Member Mark responds with an explanation...

Mark writes:  Hi Brian! I just read the Pleasure Island Admission policy letter in the "feedback" column and wanted to let you know that the information listed in there is slightly incorrect. As most WDW goers are not regular club-goers, it appears that there is some confusion over the policies. The admission policies for Pleasure Island is as follows:
  1. Anybody 18 years of age or older can enter Pleasure Island with a valid government/state issued photo I.D. They are free to go to any of the clubs by themselves (with the exception of a few clubs where you must be 21 years of age to enter). In order to purchase alcohol, you must be 21, and to confirm that you get a wristband upon entering Pleasure Island which "signals" that you are of legal drinking age.
  2. Anybody 17 years of age or younger MUST be accompanied by an adult at all times, no exceptions. If the adult is somebody other than a legal guardian, you must get a notarized note stating that you, as the legal guardian, allow the said adult to take your child into Pleasure Island.  However, the child must accompany the adult at all times while in Pleasure Island. Simply walking in with a child upon admission and leaving them in there by themselves is not permitted.  If a minor is found trying to enter a club or walking around without an adult, they will be escorted out of Pleasure Island.

I know to some people it's hard to understand why an 18 year old can enter Pleasure Island without an adult, and yet a 17 year old can't, but that simply lies in the fact that 18 years of age constitutes being an adult where as 17 doesn't.  Legally, Disney or any other company who runs a club could be held responsible if something were to happen to a 17 year old without adult supervision, however they wouldn't be responsible for an 18 year old who is considered an adult and responsible for their own actions.

Anyway, I hope this clears it up so that there isn't any confusion for any of your readers! As a former Pleasure Island CM, I can't tell you how many times people had a hard time understanding our policies in regards to age!

Well, I hope you enjoyed the reader feedback for the WDW Trip Planning Guide!  Feed free to send more questions or comments to brian@mouseplanet.com!

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Brian's Archive - Contents

I've always gotten email about the WDW Trip Planning Guide, but since we added the feedback form to the site several months ago, the number of questions has increased dramatically!  I do my best to answer each and every question personally, but I've noticed that a lot of the questions are asked again and again.  The question that one person asks might very well be the question that someone else is wondering about.  Thus this page!

So...I'll post reader email and feedback every once in a while, because the question someone else asks might be the same one you're thinking about yourself!

 

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