I’m an over-planner…I’m sure none of you can relate to that! LOL! I will be headed to the world in 42 days with a crew of 10 (including my DH, DS, DM, DMIL, just to name a few). I have been working hard on making the “perfect” PTP for us, and I think I’m coming up with some pretty good stuff (not to pat myself on the back or anything…) Either way, DH, DMIL, and a few others are totally disenchanted by the whole idea of a touring plan. I have set plans to relaxed walking speed and minimize walking to maybe help alleviate the the whole ‘feel’ of a touring plan. I’m not sure what the right answer is…do I follow my PTP and let whoever wants follow me come (and let everyone else do their own thing), or do I try to convince everyone to follow the PTP?? Has anyone ever encountered a similar situation??
I am the exact opposite of an over planner. Never used a TP and can wander the parks for hours without riding anything. Have they been to Disney before? I’d say if they’ve already been multiple times, or do not mind the fact that they probably won’t ride much, let them go.
I would say enjoying time with the family is more important that trying to see and do it all. Use the TP has a guide to keep you moving in the right direction and help eliminate those times when everyone is standing around trying to decide where to go next, but don’t let yourself get so tied up in it that all you do is stress yourself about running behind or feeling upset when others in your group are nearly as motivated in their walking as you are.
Yeah, I would have your plan as a back up (and keep it quiet) and then let them set the pace/do what they want to do.
Last trip I made all these plans and we did about 1/2 of them - and had the best trip ever. Am I planning for this trip, yes (don’t hate @MDU) but I also know that I will change at the drop of a hat and not be upset. (Unless they mess with my dinner at BOG – I am going to that if I have to go solo!)
Yes everyone has been there before (except DS5). I want to make sure that he gets to see all of the things that he would like without waiting hours in line (which is one reason I’m being so fanatical about touring plans). I have no problem telling everyone else to hit the road! lol! (more realistically, I’ll tell them what we are doing and where they can meet up with us later…) Either way, I don’t want to offend anyone or make them feel like I’m trying to get away from them.
I am prepared to not be able to follow the plan 100% of the time (as prepared as an over-planner can be to not follow plans…if that makes any sense). I also know the wonders of the apps ‘optimize’ button for changing plans, and consequently trying to get “back on track”. I used a PTP in DCA in March. We were there with only 5 people (one being DS) and were unable to follow the plan spot on (little eyes tend to wander and don’t always understand the concept of coming back to something). Unfortunately I have already mentioned about using touring plans to others (which is why everyone and their brother seems to have an opinion on it). I know that we wont be together (as a family) 100% of the time just because of the vast age differences (young adults aren’t going to want to watch the Disney Jr stage show just as DS wont ride TOT). sigh I think I might need a mantra for this trip…“I wont get stressed, I wont get stressed…”
I think what you need to address is why DH, DMIL, etc are “totally disenchanted by the whole idea of a touring plan.” Usually people who do not like the idea of a plan have this fantasy about wandering around MK, soaking it all in, and doing whatever they want, when they want, with no waits. Either that or they are experienced WDW veterans who say that they have no plan, but by virtue of their experience are actually following a plan because they “know” that you need to get to headliners early, etc.
At any rate, find out what their expectations of the vacation are, make plans that will help them achieve their expectations, and then explain to them how these plans will benefit them. If they still want to wander around aimlessly, then at that point I would say “This is my plan, and any of you who want to follow me on it are free to join in. Otherwise, buh-bye!”
One idea is to see if they would be willing to follow a touring plan for, say, the first 2 hours of touring and then let it get a little more relaxed. That way, you could make sure that you use high-yield time to get a bunch of attractions done, and then they could feel as though wandering and happening on things could occur too. I guess the other question is to whether they are up for the kind of touring you have in mind – are they anti arriving at RD, and you think there’s no other option? You may need to have a deeper conversation about what everyone’s expectations are, and make sure that they can be accommodated.
Here’s what I would do, especially with a group that size:
– Agree on a few important things to meet up and do together, rides, photo ops, a meal.
– Make sure everyone has a list of liner tips and knows what will significantly improve their day.
– Then LET IT GO and let everyone wander as they will!!! It’s about having a good time together – not about how much you get to do.
Personally, when I’m in charge of the trip and it’s just me and my DD, sometimes I use a TP. But I am WAY too independent to EVER feel comfortable following along behind someone else who made a plan for me, especially at a fun place like WDW where I’d want to explore on my own. I would likely be dissenting too…
I hope you guys all have a wonderful time!!
I was met with a lot of skepticism over a “touring plan” when I first started using them last spring, but once my DH saw how awesomely it worked out, he was a big promoter of it on our last trip with my in-laws. They were delighted by how little waiting we did. Maybe if you don’t use the term “touring plan” it will feel different to them. Just that you researched the best order to do the rides to minimize wait times. I don’t know anyone who doesn’t want to minimize time waiting in line.
I never told my husband that I made actual touringplan’s for our trip (even though we followed them daily for a week). I think he would have balked at the idea so I just told him to let me lead the way. After 2 days he told me I was like having a professional tour guide with him! I guess don’t make a big deal about the plans, tell people you have some things laid out and see if they want to come with you or not.
I absolutely love your thought on the whole matter! The reality of it is that everyone in the group has been to the world before (sans DS), but not in the last 10 or more years; they (and myself) are decidedly NOT Disney experts. That being said I am the only one in the group being proactive in most of the planning. I have made all of our ADRs at agreed upon restaurants; I have have made FP+ reservations for agreed upon attractions (and steered everyone away from attractions that do not require them), so we have discussed expectations, making sure everyone gets to see/do the things that are on their “must” list. Maybe I just need to reiterate just why touring plans are useful…I’m sorry but this is not the Disney of 20 years ago.
@blue2000 I like your idea of using the touring plan for a portion of the day and let everyone wander for the rest of the afternoon/evening. Maybe once they see how much less waiting we will be doing with the plan they will change their minds!
Maybe that’s the whole problem…Even though we did discuss what we wanted to see/do, maybe they don’t want to just be “following along”
@Iheartepcot and @mjsmomma Unfortunately I have already spilled the beans about the touring plan. I think maybe I will try changing the connotation that they seem to have with the term “touring plan”; make it less prominent. I’m glad to hear that you both had such positive experiences using the plans in the park, especially in your case @Iheartepcot with your husband being very skeptical initially!
TPs are pretty much a must, IMO. The first time we went to WDW we bought an Official Guide; I looked at the TPs with amusement and we just did what we felt like. And stood in a lot of lines. And I ran around like a maniac trying to get FPs. The next time we went we followed the plans…
On our most recent trip we went armed with Optimized PTPs and the app to re-optimize on the fly. There was grumbling from the ranks about my “Nazi Tour Guide” mentality, but afterwards everyone was talking about how much we were able to do and what a great time they had.
Our best TP experience was at DCA. We pretty much walked on to everything, and when we looked “behind” us all we saw were crowds and lines. I likened it to catching the first big wave when surfing - we had a great ride with clear water in front of us, and behind us was nothing but rough seas.
I feel like that is the same way that everyone is looking at me, as the “Nazi Tour Guide”. I’m glad your group recognized and appreciated your work and everything you all were able to accomplish! I’m hoping everyone will eventually appreciate all the work I’ve been putting in too…this Disney stuff can be hard! lol!
It’s OK to be a planner. They can follow or not. It also might work to memorize your plan and then when they ask “what should we do now?” you can just casually suggest the next step in your plan.
Looove it! Wouldn’t it be great if I could get them to follow a touring plan and not even know it! LOL!
You would be like a Disney ninja!