I am newbie here working on my touring plans in anticipation of being able to book fast passes next week and am stuck on a decision I need to make regarding arrival day. Would love some input to set me in the right direction.
I am traveling with DH (we are in our 40s), my mother (65), and two Kids DS (will be 2 months shy of 5) and DD (will be 2 weeks shy of 2). DS is afraid of Santa Claus, Chuck E Cheese, and other fur characters we have encountered (such as at Sesame Place). DD is much braver and interested in all of the above, although sometimes cautious. (It'll be a first trip for DH, DS, DD - and I haven't been in 20 years). We are staying at AoA if that matters to my plan and will have a rented car.
My goal for our arrival day is to focus on "tester attractions" to see what the kids can handle so that I can adjust plans for the rest of the trip if needed - and also to test out if characters are going to be any different for DS. Priority rides this day are Barnstormer, Dumbo, Winnie the Pooh, Buzz Lightyear, 7DMT and Mickey's Philharmagic (because I want to know how he does with 3D) - and to catch the parade and fireworks (as long as the kids aren't melting down).
I have two dining reservation options (we have DDP and I have a 4:25 1900 Park Faire and a 6:05 Crystal Palace booked). I have built two different touring plans around these options. Both plans reach my main goals and see the same number of attractions. We get into MCO around 1pm, I didn't start the plans until 4 so we wouldn't feel rushed and can squeak in rest/nap. I figured we can do something extra if we get to the parks earlier.
Chief questions are:
- Which of the two Character dinners would you recommend? I have been leaning toward Park Fare as I think face characters may be less intimidating to DS, but concerned that dining out of park is inefficient.
- And any general comments on the plans - or which is better? (I still have a few more days of plans to build)
- Considering that I am carting around a essentially 2 yo (in diapers) and 5 yo with a stroller - what walking speed would you choose? Right now I have it set to relaxed.
- Am I getting us to "Happily Ever After" soon enough (or sooner than I need too?) - roughly 8:15/8:20ish on both plans. And where should we watch? (which I realize is possibly an impossible question since it only starts the week before we get there).
Probably worth noting that if we do the Park Fare Option - my plan was to drive to the Grand Floridian and leave the car there while we took Monorail in and out of the park. I assume I can leave the car there? And if we do Crystal Palace plan we would probably do the bus from AoA.
I appreciate your thoughts and input!