Delayed Trip Report (in which we can't do things on time but have fun anyway!)

Hi! I just filled out the Touring Plans survey for our WDW trip (last week), and was hoping for some comment boxes or something, but didn’t see any :face_with_raised_eyebrow: Maybe I just missed them or something. So, you get a trip report instead :slight_smile:

Overview:
Our travel group was me (41 y/o mom), DH (40), DD (8) and DS (4). Our last trip was in November 2018 with my in-laws. We drove to Florida from Long Island (two days with a hotel stay) and back again. Stayed at TownePlace Suites at Flamingo Crossing.
Planned park days:
Sun 10/10 MK
Mon 10/11 AK, hop to HS in PM
Tue 10/12 Epcot
Wed 10/13 HS, hop to Epcot
Thu 10/14 MK (with my mom and stepdad joining us)
Fri 10/15 HS

My mom and stepdad just moved to Florida last month, and we spent Saturday 10/16 with them. Drove back 10/17 and 10/18. Will add details of each day in the comments below.

For now, some general details. Next time we go we’ll probably fly. I didn’t like flying with the kids last trip, so we decided to try driving. It wasn’t terrible, but my daughter did experience some car sickness which made my anxiety go way up. We don’t go too often, so whenever we do go again the kids will be old enough to help with luggage and stuff.

We LOVED our hotel! Our room was big, with a kitchenette (didn’t cook, but we liked having a full sized fridge with an actual freezer for ice packs). The pool was a great size, although I didn’t like that there was a bar/restaurant overlooking the pool. Kind of creeped me out that guys would just hang out while my kids were swimming. But the pool was big enough that we could stay on the other end and be kind of out of sight. The hotel had no additional resort or parking fees, AND had a free breakfast buffet. And it was super easy to drive to all the parks from the hotel. We were looking at some of the Disney Springs hotels, and we were so happy with our final choice.

I created personalized touring plans for each day, but they kind of went out the window. I am not the type to rush the kids just to get an early spot in the park, and the kids are not the type to BE rushed (opposite of our last trip when MIL was basically running us ragged through the parks from open to close). Originally, our plans had crowd levels in the 4-6 range, then were lowered to 1s and 2s after early October was so quiet. Then last week, everyone and their brother decided to visit the parks. So, it was hot and crowded, and we just took things in stride as best we could. We didn’t get through as many rides as I had hoped, but we all had fun anyway!

Coming soon…the day-by-day results of my beautiful plans that we mostly ignored :slight_smile:

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Day 1: Magic Kingdom

The plan: be in the park at 9, getting a whole bunch of rides done, have a snack around 11, few more rides, lunch at 2, more rides until 5-ish, then head off-site for dinner.

We started out getting to the park late…not too worried, just a little behind schedule. Took the ferryboat from TTC, got over to MK pretty quickly…then tried to use our magicbands to get into the park. BLUE. Tried the cards we got at the hotel. BLUE. BOO. They sent us to Guest Services, which had a ridiculously long line, waited over an hour to find out our tickets were not linked to MDE. MMkay. My paranoid-cynical theory is that they punish you for not staying on-site. So they took the tickets (voided them), linked everything, and I asked if we were good for the week. The gentleman helping us assured me that, yes, we are good to go. Spoiler alert: WE WERE NOT GOOD FOR THE WEEK. But I’ll get to that later.

Okay, so we finally get into the park and it’s nearly 11. The touring plan is already fairly useless, but I did use the TP app for wait times. We did the PeopleMover and Buzz, got some ice cream from Auntie Gravity’s, then headed to FantasyLand, where we did IASW, Philharmagic, Dumbo, Under the Sea, and the Carrousel (not in that order). Oh, and mixed in there we had a 2 PM reservation at Liberty Tree Tavern. We also headed back to Tomorrowland and did Carousel of Progress. Towards the end of the day, around 6ish, we wandered toward Frontierland and considered riding BTMRR, but my daughter was scared to ride, so we just ended the day there. We hopped on the monorail about 7, headed back to the hotel and decided we didn’t want to go out again to eat. DH was a trooper and headed to Applebee’s to pick up an online order we placed.

Thoughts for the day: we made the best of the time we had. We got to ride some of our favorites (PeopleMover and Small World…and the Carrousel for my daughter). Oh! And I was really surprised at how much my daughter liked Carousel of Progress! I figured the kids would complain they were bored, but nope! That was a happy surprise because DH and I love that ride so much.
LTT lunch was delish. I was worried about it being too ‘heavy’ for a hot day, but as long as you don’t overdo it, it’s all good! I didn’t care for the ooey gooey cake. My daughter wanted the vegan apple cake option, and I tried some of that, which I thought was much better.
We were all okay with the mask-wearing, and didn’t feel worried about covid or anything. If anything, we were less worried because of all the masks and hand sanitizer everywhere! Plus, on our last trip, three of the four of us (DH was the lucky one) got a stomach bug at some point, so I was more nervous about catching that again. UGH. But we all stayed healthy! :partying_face:

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Sorry about the ticket issues! I can’t believe you didn’t like the ooey gooey toffee cake!!

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I didn’t like it either. It wasn’t awful, but it wasn’t great either. Definitely sounded a lot more delicious than it tasted.

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I love it so much I make it at home!

… and interestingly, the chef wouldn’t let dd have it due to her allergy to artificial sweeteners.

I wouldn’t think a cake would have artificial sweeteners in it, but maybe that is why I didn’t like it?

There are none in the recipe. It has smashed Heath bars, maybe in those?

We don’t know. They were adamant that she could not have it.

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Didn’t mean to disappear for so long, trying to catch up on work. In the meantime, here are some photos from day one…

Stole a quick shot of grumpy hubby waiting in guest relations line…


He probably wasn’t as grumpy as me though :grin:

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We were there in the crowds with you. If it makes you feel better, we stayed onsite and also had constant issues with magic bands all week. We never ended up in the dreaded Guest Services line, but there was a lot of resetting fingerprinting with those iPads, to the point where I think my index finger is required for my whole family now.

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Day 2: Animal Kingdom

We got to the park a little closer to what we planned. Our first stop was the Safari. Long line, but it was moving most of the time (and also in the shade, so yay!). We then went to Navi River Journey…and the line for FOP was craaaazy! I think we had to cross over it twice to get where we were going? I dunno. It looked pretty bad. But NRJ was not terrible. After that, we stopped and got some ice cream bars from one of the little kiosks. We were going to attempt to see the Lion King show at 11:30…we headed toward the theater a little before that (maybe 11:20?) and they were already announcing that if we got in line now, we were in line for the 12:30 show. Umm…nope! Decided to just skip it. I forget which we did first, but we walked through the gorilla trails and took the train out to Rafiki’s planet watch. The train ride was nice (especially since my son LOVES trains!), but the attractions there were Meh. My daughter actually liked stopping to read the little signs they had about conservation, and making backyard habitats and stuff. We did the petting zoo area, and walked around inside to look at bugs and things. Then we stopped to buy some Mickey and Minnie hand sanitizer clip-on key ring thingies (my daughter just HAD to buy something LOL).

We were then getting kinda hungry, so we placed a mobile order for Restaurantosaurus. By the time we headed over that way and found a table on the patio to sit at, our food was ready. It was pretty tasty. DH had a burger, I had the Cobb salad with chicken, and the kids shared a foot-long hot dog and fries. Oh, and my daughter had their wildberry lemonade which was SO GOOD. We spent the rest of the time in the Dino USA area. Climbed around on the boneyard play areas, kids went down a bunch of slides, did some digging in the ‘dig site’ area…then after our tummies settled a little, we did the Triceratop Spin ride.

It was nearly 3:00 by then, and we were getting a rain alert, so we decided to head out. The only things left we had planned to do were walking some of the trails, but we were fine with leaving them out. The rain started around the time we got to our car, and it got pretty heavy so it worked out. I mean, we had ponchos with us, and could have stayed, but we got enough done, we felt. On the way back to the hotel, we stopped at a Walgreen’s to pick up swim goggles (we forgot to bring my daughter’s from home). A little after we got back to the hotel, the rain stopped so we headed to the pool. We went to a Red Robin for dinner, which was really empty and we got a little nervous (like, why is no one here? Do they know something we don’t?), but the food was good. Aaaand…that was the end of day two! :slight_smile:

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Some animal kingdom pictures before a day 3 report…

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Day 3: EPCOT!!!

Before I get into the day’s events, I noticed a couple of things in my pictures that made me go OOO I should mention this! First, we brought a stroller. We haven’t used a stroller in ages, and actually sold our old strollers through Facebook last year. But I knew I didn’t want the kids to be miserable (and I didn’t want to be miserable hearing them whine)…and maybe I’m spoiling them for the week, but so what? It’s a vacation! :slight_smile: I looked at possibly renting a stroller, but there was only one place I found that had a Sit N Stand stroller (which we wanted), and it cost nearly as much as just buying one. Now, I can sell this stroller too and it’ll end up cheaper overall!

Couple of other things that were very handy…mask lanyards (not even sure that’s the right term…but the things to hold the masks around our necks). Made it so much easier going in and out of buildings. Some families wouldn’t be ready and would have to stop and dig out their masks. We also got a personal neck fan. I wish we had gotten two! My hubby has it on in one of the animal kingdom pictures. I guess that’s about it, really…

Okay, so on to Epcot! I got up a few minutes before 7 to try for a boarding group for Remy’s. It was really easy, I thought. I set up my iPad with a clock website, and as soon as it switched to 7:00, I hit refresh, then join group, and got BG21! WOOHOO!

We got into Epcot a little after 10, and they were loading groups 1-20. We headed straight for Remy’s, and by the time we got there our BG was called so we got right into line. The ride was so fun! All four of us loved it.

This was the day we stuck closest to our touring plan, even though we were starting out later because of doing Remy’s first. We did Spaceship Earth (another of my and my daughter’s favorites), then went to Soarin’ (got row B1 without even planning or asking) and Living with the Land. Then, since we were hungry, we decided to get lunch at Sunshine Seasons. Lunch there was okay. Nothing spectacular, but it was decent. I got a stir fry which was pretty tasty.

After lunch, we headed to Journey into Imagination. Caught the tail end of Winnie the Pooh out on the lawn, which was very cute. My daughter adored the Figment ride. The rest of us…eh, not so much. After the ride, we did some of the indoor play activities they had (my son liked the musical squares you could walk on) and watched the jumping fountains outside. After that, we headed for our walk around the world. We started on the Mexico side and did a somewhat leisurely stroll around the whole world showcase. Couple of highlights: we watched Reflections of China, visited the train setup in Germany, saw Jasmine in Morocco, and spent some time in England where we saw Mary Poppins and let the kids have fun back by the maze area.

Since we ended up back by future world, and our dinner reservation wasn’t until 6:40, we had time to visit the Seas pavilion. Rode the Nemo ride (I do not get the appeal of this…I was so bored) and did Turtle Talk with Crush (my daughter got to ask a question). Looked around at the aquariums for a bit, then headed to dinner…

At the Biergarten restaurant! YAY! I wanted so badly to go there on our last trip, but didn’t, so this was a must-do for me. Both kids loved the music, and were clapping along to some songs. We also Facetimed my dad (who is German and took me and my brothers to the Biergarten back in 1995, and a similar restaurant at Busch Gardens). My son was very picky, as usual, and just ate a few pieces of a hot dog and some peas and carrots. The waitress was super nice, and saw how little he ate, so she didn’t charge us for him. She got a nice tip after that :grin: And that was the end of day 3!

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Sounds like a great day!

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Probably my favorite day of the trip :slight_smile:

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A few Epcot pictures!!

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Day 4: HS/Epcot again

Forgot to mention one other ride from Epcot…we did the Gran Fiesta Tour on Day 3 as well :slight_smile:

I think our Hollywood Studios days were the least productive. Just…the lines…so many lines. We started with Mickey and Minnie’s Runaway Railway. Long line, in the hot sun…but the line was longer later, so I guess we lucked out. However…about 20 seconds into the ride, it STOPPED. And we got evacuated. DD was freaking out a little…not like crying or anything, just kept saying I’m scared. But all the lights were on at least. It was a little creepy with how quiet it was. So we got walked off the ride and got a pass for later (which we ended up using to re-ride MMRR since we hardly got to see any of it). From about 11 until 3:45, we didn’t get much done…five rides/attractions in that time, plus a snack break. We did the Disney Junior dance party, Muppetvision, Tower of Terror, Toy Story Mania, and Alien Swirling Saucers. The kids were NOT fans of ToT! The last time I went on it, back in 1995, I remembered being kind of unimpressed, and thinking it wasn’t that scary. Well, I don’t know if I am misremembering or the ride has changed, but it was WAY scarier than I remember! More fun, too, at least for me and DH. We had a dining reservation for the Sci-Fi Dine In Theater at 3:40, which we had to wait a little bit for…and the food was just okay. DD said everything was dirty. I said, well it’s really dark so I guess they can’t clean it that well! And I said just don’t touch anything then. :woman_shrugging: I think that’s a one-and-done restaurant for us. We did the 50s cafe on the last trip, and I enjoyed that one much more.

On the way to the park, the kids saw the Skyliner and kept asking if we were going on that ride :slight_smile: We had gotten park hopper tickets, so I figured we might as well use it! We took the Skyliner over to Epcot and rode Frozen Ever After. Didn’t care much for the Skyliner because it stopped a few times, including once over the middle of an intersection and I was getting a little freaked out. Kids liked it though. We took the boat back to HS to get our car, and I thought it would be faster than switching over to the other Skyliner line. Didn’t take into account that the boat makes three or four hotel stops on the way (oops). But it was a nice ride back at least!

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Not too many HS pics to choose from…

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Day 5: Magic Kingdom

Sigh, the week is nearly over…

On day 5 my mom and stepdad (who moved to Florida in September) joined us at Magic Kingdom. We repeated a few rides from day 1, plus a couple of different ones. We repeated Buzz and PeopleMover. Headed to Fantasyland next for Pooh and small world. I think Haunted Mansion was next (we didn’t take many photos that day, so I’m having trouble reconstructing the order of things).

We had a lunch reservation at the Plaza Restaurant. I was not impressed. The only thing good about it was our view. We were in the little room in the corner with a view of the castle and the cavalcades as they went by. The menu was so short, and the food was nothing to write home about. Oh well, at least my mom paid :grin:

After lunch, we went on Pirates and saw the Country Bear Jamboree (mostly to just find something cool to relax in). It was about 3:00 by then, and my mom had had enough of the heat. They decided to head home, so we went to the hotel for a quick dip in the pool.

Our dinner reservation was Raglan Road at 7:45. I kept trying to modify and get an earlier time, but originally we were supposed to be a group of six…if I had known my mom and stepdad would leave I probably could have gotten an earlier time for just four people…but day-of, I couldn’t find anything else. Oh well. The kids were still hanging in there, and were being really well-behaved. I got the Braised Be Beef for dinner…and OMG it was soooo good. I will post a picture of it. I very rarely take pictures of food, but this was just amazing. The meat was so tender and YUMMMMMY.

Anyhoo, we did a couple of quick shop stops before heading out. That was by far our latest night out. Luckily, with Friday being kind of relaxed (basically we were planning to get a couple of rides we missed at HS and maybe a re-ride or two), I wasn’t worried because we could sleep in a little.

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Day 5 pics

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