Our Disney Pre Christmas Trip, Final Thoughts

My wife and I enjoyed every minute of our Pre Christmas Trip! It was most magical…… but some things bother me that I’m still not sure about.

First…. the magical.

The weather was absolutely beautiful for this western New York couple. For the first four days we enjoyed wearing shorts and tee shirts to the parks.

Day five saw a little bit of liquid Pixie Dust in the morning, but it cleared nicely by lunch time. Our last day, Day Six, was cool to start but warmed quickly.

The resort we stayed in for this trip, Disney’s Saratoga Springs Resort, is a big and sprawling Deluxe DVC Resort. Yes… we are DVC members and have been for many years. If we weren’t DVC, we probably would have stayed at Port Orleans French Quarter…. our favorite non DVC resort.

Saratoga Springs is within walking distance or a quick boat ride away from Disney Springs. I was even surprised they had bus service to Disney Springs because it is so close.

We loved our room which was right on the Lake Buena Vista Golf Course. During our on line check in, I had requested a Fairway View and we were granted our request.

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We were given a second floor room with a great view of one of the greens where we could sit on our balcony in the morning, eat our breakfast and watch the golfers. It was a perfect room for us.

Bus service?  We really dislike having to use the busses to get to every park, but in fairness, we only waited longer than five minutes one time during our stay.

Our dining choices were very typical of every stay we have at Walt Disney World. We ate mostly at counter service locations but we did include one Table Service. We wanted to make sure to get seats for the Candlelight Processional and the best way to do so is to reserve a Dining Package for it.

America Ferrera from “Ugly Betty” fame did a great job reading at the Processional! And you could tell she enjoyed the experience too.

We decided to return to one of our favorites…. the Garden Grill for this and I’m so glad we did. The food was spectacular, as always and the characters were almost non stop at our table.  there were always one or two of these…… Mickey, Pluto, Chip and Dale hanging around for photos with us. Pluto was actually the funniest of them all.

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I still have a love/hate relationship with Fast Pass Plus on the My Disney Experience app. I hate planning two months in advance which park and what time we have to be at it. But…. you can always change your selections any time you want providing there are Fast Passes available for your time you want.

The crowds were very manageable while we were there but it was getting crowded at the Magic Kingdom on our last day, Saturday, December 19th. I can’t even imagine how packed it will be for Christmas and New Years.

Most wait times were 15 to 20 minutes for the common attractions. The major attractions like Seven Dwarfs Mine Train, Soarin’, Peter Pans Flight, Expedition Everest, etc. were usually over 100 minutes. Once it gets over 20 minutes, we walk on by so it wasn’t a big deal. We did everything we wanted to do and we did leave some things for the next trip in April, 2016.

One of the things that bothers me is the cost of going to Walt Disney World. Disney has raised prices of everything this year and I already hear people grumbling about the cost of a taking a family to this happy place.

I just quoted a family of four, two adults, two kids aged 12 and 8 for a stay at Disney’s Pop Century Resort from March 13th to 18th with Four Day Base Tickets and Memory Maker for a total cost of $2,197.62.

But this includes transportation to and from the Orlando airport and all transportation to and from the parks. And when you consider you are immersed in the Disney magic for your whole trip, it breaks down to $5.73 per hour, per person.  Of course you still have expense for food and souvenirs.

If you are a family of four, you can expect to spend about $50.00 per counter service meal and if you desire to eat a character meal, expect to pay about $240.00. But the smiles on your kids face will be well worth it.

I hope you’ve enjoyed being included on our pre Christmas trip and if we get enough positive comments, we just might do live trip reports for our April, 2016 stay at Disney’s Boardwalk Villas.

Thank you for reading and I hope if you decide to visit Walt Disney World, you will consider allowing me to be part of your planning process. I do not charge planning fee’s…. and you get my experience to make sure your family vacation is fun and relaxing while still seeing everything at Walt Disney World!

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Contact me today and let me help make your trip to all Disney destinations special!

 

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