Help me plan a minimal trip to Orlando

Long rambling introduction

This section is boring. Skip to the next bold heading. TL;DR I’m planning a trip in June, in addition to my trip in December.

As those of you who keep notes will know, my next trip is scheduled to be December 2022. This will be with my two friends Anty and Stuey and — this is new information — my ex-boyfriend Paul, who recently broke up with the guy he dated after me and is therefore now no longer banned from being friends with me. (Yes, we’ll be sharing a room. Yes, I’m hoping we’re going to get back together. No, I don’t want to hear your reasons why that’s a bad idea. You know nothing about it. Butt out.)

Here’s the thing. December 2022. That’s a year away. It’s too long.

I was feeling a little bit down last night. Well, you know, Christmas and all. I’ll be on my own. (Yes, I’m deliberately manipulating you emotionally.) And I was thinking about what there was coming up to look forward to. My current summer plan is to go to DLP again. But — ugh, I hate to say this — it’s just not the same. If I learned anything in 2021 it’s that there’s nowhere else I want to go on vacation than Orlando. Not a cruise. Not a city break. Not Disney Lite.

There are two not entirely convincing reasons why a trip to Orlando in June makes even more sense.

First, flights. I have flight vouchers for Anty and Stuey’s flights in December. And a big, fat flight voucher for my own flight in December. The problem is, my voucher would pay for a business class flight. But I should really be sitting in cattle with A&S. I was wondering if maybe Virgin would let me use my voucher for both me and Paul to sit at the back of the plane, but I don’t think they will. So: what? They’re all in economy and I’m in business? That’s kinda douchey. But if I use my voucher to pay for an economy seat and sit with them, I’m wasting it: there’s no refund of the difference in the fare.

Second, my UOR annual pass. I’ve only used it once. I could use it again if I go in June. It’s runs out before December 2022. Pity to waste it, no?

So I’m 80% certain I’m going to book a little Matthew-only trip to Orlando in June. I’ll use my big voucher and travel in style. Then I can slum it in December with my friends.

Now comes the main point of the thread

I have in mind that this June trip will be somewhat minimalist. The December trip is not about me. It’s about my friends, none of whom have ever been to Orlando. (Hell, Anty’s never even been on a plane or left the country.)

So I’m thinking, why not do all those things I say I want to do but then never make time for. Like World Showcase. You know, do it properly. Sci-Fi Dine-In. That I always book and always cancel. Maybe even Disney Springs.

I don’t want to spend a lot of money and I don’t want to get stressed about Genie+ and LL. I mean, I’ll probably buy some access, but I’ve been on every ride loads of times. I don’t have to do them all again. I’ll be back in December anyway. Why not do Hall of Presidents. Or Philharmagic. Or the Muppet thing. Both of them. I’ve never even been to the bit of MK that’s got the Under the Sea ride and Dumbo and whatnot. I’m not even sure where it is.

So . . . how would you plan a simple, no stress, trip to WDW? How would you fill the time and keep it interesting? Sure, maybe you try to get an LL for 7DMT / SDD / MMRR but if you don’t, you don’t and you’re definitely not getting in line for it. No way.

One idea I had: A treasure hunt — find all 50 of the golden statue thingies.

So that kind of thing. Stuff that’s fun, but not stressful.

Over to you.

Oh. I’m thinking four full days in at WDW and two at UOR.



Will you be staying on property? Resort time might be relaxing.

If I had surplus time in the world, I would meander the trails in AK. I’ve barely explored them.

Hit me up for His & His matching masks in due course… :+1:t2::heart_eyes::heart_eyes:


I like all of your ideas. Definitely eat at Sci-Fi; search for the statues; world showcase done right. Those all sound fun and stress free.


Yes! Good one. That’s another thing I’ve skimped on. And the train thing to the other thing.



Yes. I’m looking at ASMu. And, yes, exploring the resorts is something I’ve skimped on.

Also, going to places like Three Bridges for dinner. I’ve always said I would. I never have.


If you go in June all the topiary from Flower and Garden should still be out in WS. They are gorgeous. Honestly to make it super cheap, and considering there are minimal on-site benefits I would consider offsite and Uber everywhere.


Good call!

Are there any? I’m not doing early hours.

ASMu is affordable. But I’m open to suggestions.


The animation academy is there now too. You could even try and catch different times to draw different characters.


Early entry is all I know of now unless you stay deluxe on a Monday or Wednesday.

I have frequently stayed at the Disney Springs hotels (if cheap enough) or at any number of hotels off of Palm Parkway just outside of the DS area. The benefit of staying there is that it’s not a terribly expensive Uber drive or if you have time to spare you can take the Orlando city bus #50 (Orlando Lynx) to DS or the TTC for a couple bucks each way. If you get to looking into the Palm Pkwy hotels I’d be happy to share some specifics with you.

If I find a way to squeeze in a trip for the Spring Time surprise races or the epic liner meet in July I will be staying off property unless I get a massive deal on a DVC rental or Priceline/Hotwire hidden deal.

If you rearrange slightly to be May 15-21, we (my family of 7 - we’re super nice and almost all adults) will show you how to do WS properly.


Hi - I’ve always enjoyed reading your posts. I am in a math/finance related profession and definitely do not have a way with words like you do. I love the way you write posts and love hearing about your trips and trip planning. I was living vicariously through your last trip and all the details of Canada. Any-who definitely sit with your friends in economy next December. I say yes to doing your own trip in June. I would focus on one favorite ride in each park, something you really love and then hit up some of the shows and attractions like Hall of Presidents, Philharmagic, Carousel of Progress, taking your time in World Showcase, doing the animal trails at AK, etc. Don’t have to worry about LL for any of those things so that should help make it stress free. I would still focus on some good restaurants though. I find it stressful not knowing where I’m going to eat when I’m at WDW so I would put forth some effort in getting a few good reservations. Places you really want to eat but maybe you haven’t had a chance to enjoy yet.


Alas, my choice of dates is determined by my work commitments. I would lose a lot of money (and goodwill) if I took time off in May.


I’ll be there a few of those days!

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A hidden mickey hunt?

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@mousematt bummer
@LTinNC82 fun! We’ll have to connect!

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Do you like sangria? I’ve heard Sangria University is fun. (I feel like it’s at Three Bridges but I might be totally wrong.)


@mousematt Yes! Hidden mikeys force you to walk slower and look at every.thing. So much fun! Get the app.

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If you arent planning resort time, I save by staying at one of the cheap hotels at DS. I’m going to be in the park all day, so may as well spend my money there instead.

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Hidden Mickey app?!

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(immediately downloads app)