Another President's week trip report!

Well, we’re back and settled from our awesome President’s week trip. We had the best time despite the business! It was our first time staying offsite and I have to say that though I did like having the extra space, I missed just hopping on the bus/boat and getting dropped at the front of the park. Getting from the parking lot to park entrance was a bit of a pain at times!

On this trip was me, DH, DD(8), DD(4 - almost 5), as well as my sister, brother in law, niece (7) and nephew (5). This is our third trip to WDW in three years, but my sister’s family hasn’t been since my niece was a baby. I was in charge of all the planning (yay!) and I was anxious to make sure everyone had a good time!

Day 1 - Sunday: Epcot, Crowd Level 10!

We had a bit of a stressful start this first morning. I had a PPO reservation for GG at 8:00 and we also had to activate our Canadian Resident tickets. We got there plenty early and were first at bag check, so I thought we’d be able to activate our tickets with plenty of time, but they didn’t let us through the bag check line until a little after 7:45. By the time we got to Guest Services and got our tickets activated, it was after 8:00.

We got to GG around 8:10 and had to wait for a few minutes to be seated so this breakfast was a little more rushed than I’d hoped. That said, the food was delicious and the characters were lots of fun.

We finished up and headed down to Soarin’ at about 8:50 and they were already letting the breakfast crowd in. Everyone loved the ride! After Soarin’, we met Joy and Sadness with about a five minute wait and then headed to the Seas for our Nemo and Crush FPPs.

DD(8) got called on at Crush and DH and I had to identify ourselves as her parents and answer some questions. I thought it was fun, but DH (who’s a bit shy) was embarrassed. :joy: We also explored the Seas a bit and checked out the manatees.

By this time, it was around 11:30 and the plan was to head to the WS for lunch and then our FEA FP, but the kids were starting to fade (yes, already!!). It was hot and we had had a late arrival the night before after a long day of traveling, so we decided to head back to the house to hang out and swim. But first, we enjoyed our first Mickey bar! :heart:


Looking forward to reading more! Annoyingly I can’t see uploaded pics anymore.

ETA oh if I return to a thread I can see them. Cute!

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I was at Epcot that same day!!!


Park Day 2 - Tuesday, MK with EMM - Crowd Level 9

We took Monday as an off day because I figured that would likely be the busiest day of the week in terms of crowds in the parks. We did end up going to Gatorland for a few hours which was pretty hilarious. :joy:

We were up with the birds on Tuesday to make it to TTC in time to get to EMM. We arrived at the parking lot right at 7 and the parking booths weren’t open so we saved $25 (this also happened to us on our Epcot day).

We walked from our car to the ferry/monorail stations. The ferry wasn’t running yet so we took the resort monorail. Luckily there was one waiting so we hopped right on. This was actually surprisingly fun and the kids loved it! It was cool to see the Poly and the Grand Floridian.

We arrived at the entrance to MK by about 7:30 so had plenty of time to get our wristbands etc. before they started letting us in at 7:45 or so. There actually seemed like more people at this EMM than the one we attended last May and the line was pretty long for 7DMT at the start.

We headed to PP first. My DD(4) LOVES Peter Pan so this was really fun for me. I loved watching her little face as she saw all the characters. After PP, the line was still long for 7DMT but I couldn’t convince DD(8) to do another ride first so everyone headed there while DD(4) and I headed to UTS. We were literally the only people on UTS! The rest of our crowd ended up waiting for about 10 minutes for mine train.

Next all the kids decided they wanted to do the carousel. The planner in me cringed, but of course, I obliged. :laughing:

I think we all did UTS next and then DH took DD(4) to WTP while the rest of us walked on to 7DMT two more times.

After EMM, we headed to meet Ariel and then went to Dumbo. The line for Dumbo jumped from 10 minutes to 30 while we were in line and it really didn’t seem to be moving. The kids were starting to get hungry and unhappy, so we made the decision to get out of the line and head for breakfast. The EMM breakfast was ok. It wasn’t anything special, but was totally fine.

We then headed to the HM for our first FP. This was actually my first time on this ride in three trips and many visits to the MK. I loved it and so did all the kids. We killed some time before our next FP in the Christmas Shoppe which I always love. The we headed to Splash for our FPP. I couldn’t believe it, but DD(4) decided she wanted to try it so we all rode together which was awesome! She ended up hating that last drop, but it was still fun! You can’t really see her in this pic as she’s buried into my side. Haha!

After Splash, we headed to BTMRR for our FP but it was down so we used our anytime FP on POC. It was then time for our Plaza ADR. This was really our only low point of the trip. We arrived 10 minutes early and were given a pager. We then proceeded to wait for an hour past our ADR time to be seated. I spoke with the CM numerous times throughout our wait. It seems there was a big party that just sort of hung around for a long time after they were finished. The CMs even sent a manager out to speak to us and she was quite lovely, but basically said there wasn’t anything she could do to get them moving. We thought about canceling, but MK so crowded that I figured we’d be waiting for a long time even at a QS. Also, we kept being told they should be leaving any minute and once we got so far in, it was hard to abandon ship!

We were finally seated and I thought the food was pretty good. I had a sangria (which I needed at that point) and the kids all had the unlimited milkshakes.

After lunch, the kids were totally wiped so we made our way toward the entrance. Since we were close to parade time, we stopped to watch on the steps on the Town Hall which was a great, shaded location. Everyone loved the parade and I was so glad we got to watch as it’s one of my very favourite parts of a MK day!


Awesome! We didn’t notice the crowds much because we ended up leaving so early. Crazy that it ended up being an actual 10!

I think they’re selling more tickets now it includes more rides, I’ve seen a few people say it was busier recently.

We did Gatorland on our first ever trip, 27 years and we haven’t felt the need to return :joy:

I don’t blame you! Hahah! I don’t think we’ll be back! :rofl:

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Wednesday - HS EMM - Crowd Level 9

This was such an awesome day! We did the TSL EMM and absolutely loved it. We got to the park around 7:00 and walked from our car to the entrance. We were let in right away and then held in a line for TSL until around 7:25. The line was very orderly and nobody ran or pushed.

We decided to to TSMM first. Man, I love that ride so much! My BIL got a pretty good score and he and my DH had a pretty good competition going throughout the morning. We went to SDD next and waited for about 5 minutes. This ride. So fun, in my opinion! My DD(8) and niece (7) ended up doing it a total of 4 times. I did it 3, but had to bow out for the last ride.

I also did Aliens twice with DD(4). She loved it and put her hands in the air like she was on a roller coaster. Too sweet! :heart_eyes:

DH and DD(4) and BIL and my nephew also did TSMM twice while we were riding SDD. All in all, it was such an awesome experience. It seemed empty compared to the MK EMM!

The line for SDD was pretty insane when the park opened. Crazy! We went right to breakfast after EMM finished. The breakfast was delicious in my opinion. The kids loved the donut and chicken bowl (it’s vacation after all!) and I really enjoyed the avocado on toast. DH had the Mexican bowl and really liked it too.

After breakfast we hit ToT for a few of us and then did the BATB show. This was the first time we’ve seen this show and we loved it!

After the show, BIL, DD(8), my niece and I headed to RNR. My niece got a bit overwhelmed in line and her eyes actually filled up, so we all decided to skip it. We’ll probably try it next trip when the girls are a little older.

By this time it was about 1:00, so we headed back to the house for an afternoon of lounging and swimming!


I have the exact same picture of Me and DGD (8) on Splash Mountain. I look like I’m riding by myself lol

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Too funny! :joy:

Thursday - Late start MK - Crowd Level 8

We’d had three early mornings so I asked my sister and brother in law on Wednesday evening if they’d prefer a later start the next day. We had the Plaza dessert party booked and I thought a later start may work better than an early start and afternoon break. They both agreed and I learned that you can plan a great day without a ton of notice!

I modified to move our early FPPs and it all worked out perfectly. I was able to get SM/Buzz, POC, Splash and, with a fair bit of refreshing, an overlapping PP for DD(4) and I!

We had a restful morning of drinking coffee by the pool and swimming and left for MK at around 1:15 or so. We made it into the park by a little after 2, just in time of our SM/Buzz FPPs. I love SM, but I definitely feel it afterward. :tired_face: The girls loved it though so I took one for the team (I die laughing at my face here - so serene!).

After SM for the big kids and Buzz for the littles, we did the People Mover. This was my first time doing this ride, but we had some time to kill. It was wonderful! So relaxing and enjoyable! We did have to wait for about 7 minutes - a testament to the crowds I guess!

By this time, it was just before 3 so we decided to stop behind the crowd on Main Street to catch the parade. We were on the sunny side of the street and it was HOT! Some very nice ladies offered to let the kids in front of them so they could see which was very kind. I had advised the kids we’d have to stand behind the crowd since we just sort of strolled up at 3:00, so they were delighted. The parade was great and I loved watching it with the castle as a backdrop.

After the parade, we headed to POC which everyone had wanted to repeat. It was great becuase it’s such a cool ride (temperature-wise). We were so hot from standing to watch the parade. After POC, we went to Peco Bill’s for an early dinner. It was pretty much empty with no lines so I can definitely see why people eat at off times!

It was time for our Splash FP next, with PP for DD(4) and I. As I mentioned before, DD(4) absolutely loves Peter Pan. She loves the orginal movie, along with Return to Neverland. I’ve also recently bought the live action Peter Pan which she watches over and over as well.

On our way to PP, we saw that Peter was actually out meeting! The line was super long so I grabbed this shot of DD(4) with Peter Pan in the background. :rofl: As he finished up his meet and greet, he walked right by us and said hello to DD(4). She was star-struck! We had a lovely ride, just the two of us and I felt so grateful to be able to spend that time with her. :heart:

Everyone met us just outside PP, and I was able to get a 4th FP for IASW with an immediate return time. DD(4) also loves this ride. DD(8) closed her eyes and pretended to be asleep. :joy: After IASW, I was able to grab an immediate FPP for Dumbo so we headed there.

By this time it was 6:15, so we headed to the Tomorrowland Terrace for our dessert party. We loved this event. The desserts were yummy and it was a nice, relaxing way to kill time before the fireworks. We headed out to the garden around 7:20 and grabbed a spot along the back railing. We had tons of room and the kids sat on the “grass” and relaxed before the show.

And HEA - what can I say. We LOVED it! It was our first time staying for the fireworks since the kids have always been too small to stay up that late. I actually cried, I won’t lie. Haha!

We hung around in the garden for a bit, waiting for the crowd to disperse and then headed for our last FPPs - Barnstormer for the big kids and Buzz for the littles again. BIL, DD(8), my niece and I did so much laughing after Barnstormer. I’d heard it was short, but I really think it’s like 38 seconds long. Haha!

We met up with DH, my sister, and the little kids afterward and made our way out of MK with Once Upon a Time playing behind us. We had to wait for the boat and then the tram which was a little challenging with tired kids, but not too bad. It was a perfect day at MK!


so happy to see Maleficent back and breathing fire

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What a perfect day! I also have a huge PP fan. PP and return to neverland on repeat in our house!

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Oh pshhh – I cry every time I see HEA. It’s just so magical!!


I cry every time :slight_smile:

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Friday: AK - Crowd Level 9 - Last Park Day :disappointed_relieved:

We’d had a late night the night before, so we didn’t rush on Friday morning. The kids get up early anyways, but I resisted the urge to rush my sister and BIL (this was very difficult by the way. Haha!). My DH is used to me rushing us out the door on our Disney vacations, but I wanted to be respectful of how others vacation. Lol!

We didn’t get to the park until around 9:45 and there was a HUGE line to get into the parking lot. We then had to wait for two trams because there were so many people around. No worries, I modified our first FP (EE) while waiting on the tram so we wouldn’t be stressed/rushed. It’s all good. I am totally relaxed. :stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye:

So we headed to the Boneyard first because I figured the little kids could play/do triceratops spin while we went to EE with the big kids. For the first ride, it was BIL, DD(8), my niece(7) and I. So fun! Then we swapped bands with the little kids and DD(8) and my niece got a second ride with my sister and I. Man, I love EE!!

After EE, we headed to the Lion King show. Everyone loved it! We had a few minutes to kill before our safari, so we got a snack (a beer for the adults) and sat in the shade for a break. It was SO hot on our AK day. The sun was just blazing down on us all day.

We did the safari and the kids enjoyed it. I thought it was probably the least exciting safari I’d done, but I don’t blame the animals. It was like 1:00 and 33 degrees (92 F).

The best part of the day happened while in line for the safari. At 12:59, I got on the website to try to modify our Navi FPPs. And lo and behold, at 1:01 a 7:00pm FOP popped up for 2. I grabbed it (even though we’d be long gone by 7) and modified and got a 1:10 return time! Eeeeeek! Then I tried for another and got a 2:40 return for BIL (DH was worried about motion sickness but I think now that he’d be totally fine). Yay!!

We then realized this meant DH would be taking all 4 kids on Navi by himself, but he didn’t care. He’s such a good sport. :heart::heart::heart:

So after the safari, we got the kids settled in the shade in Pandora with DH and BIL and my sister and I headed to FOP. It was unbelievable. I cried. My sister said she felt like it changed her life. :rofl: During our FOP ride, DH went to Navi with the kids. We met up and headed to Satu’li for lunch while BIL rode FOP (which he loved as well).

I loved the food at Satu’li. I had a noodle bowl with chicken and a glass of Chardonnay. I don’t think I’ve ever had a better meal at Disney. Haha! The kids had the cheeseburger pods and loved them. There were lots of available tables at Satu’li and no lines. Again, it was almost 3:00, so an off-time for eating.

After BIL’s FOP ride and our late lunch/early dinner, we called it a day. Such an amazing day at AK!