I'm overthinking this ... but would appreciate others input


#1

After many adults only trips to WDW, this will be my first WDW visit with my kids (to be 3.5 y/o and 13 months old) and my first visit in 4 years. It will be me, my wife, the 2 kids and my parents for 4.5 days at the parks. We are staying at Bay Lake Tower

We have 1/2 day (Day 3 or 60+2 in FP+ speak) and a full day (Day 5 or 60+4) to divide between Epcot and AK. My wife or I will be at the resort while the little guy naps from about 1 pm - 3 pm each day.

For the most part, we plan to only do rides we can all do together (the 2 possible exceptions are that my wife and I would like to ride 7DMT and FOP). Thus, this trip we are not doing the mountains at MK, Everest, TT or Soarin’. We are also skipping DHS.

Originally our plan was:

Day 3 - afternoon at AK

FP+ … Safari and Lion King in the early-mid afternoon and NRJ for 5 pm’ish once the little guy and other parent arrives. We will try for FOP for my wife and I instead of NRJ, but realize FOP for 60+2 is possible, but unlikely.

6:30 pm dinner at Rainforest Cafe

Day 5 - Epcot

FP+ Turtle Talk, Spaceship Earth and FEA

Noon lunch at San Angel

Now I am rethinking our plans and might want to switch Epcot to 1/2 Day 3 and AK to full Day 5 for the following reasons:

(1) my 13 month old will miss the Safari and animal stuff with our current plan due to his nap. He will likely enjoy that more than Epcot.

(2) My wife and I have a much better chance of getting FOP FP on 60+4 than 60+2.

(3) I read yesterday that animals are more likely to be seen on Safari in the morning vs early afternoon.

(4) My 3.5 year old will likely get more out of a full day at AK over Epcot.

So I looked at dining options last night and there is currently not much available for table service lunch at AK on our Day 5 or Dinner at Epcot on Day 3. My Dad has eating restrictions so we need to eat at a table service. I think the dining reservations are the biggest reason for me to just stick with our current plan.

My wife says I’m overthinking this and since we will be returning annually, it doesn’t really matter what we do or don’t do this time and we might as well just leave things as-is because we have the dining reservations.

Just curious if anyone here has anything to add that might influence my decision on the plan.


#2

I agree with your reasons for changing your plans and think the new plan is probably a better fit for your family.

Also, assuming you are still more than 60 days out b/c of your musings on FPP possibilities and dining reservations open up all the time. What are you trying to switch around on those days? Have you tried reservation finder? I’ve had lots of luck for a party of 6 with reservation finder.


#3

Except for your possible dining issue -I would agree with your second version of the plan.
I have some issues with my bf for dining also, but I have had some good luck with changing my party size, then modifying to the correct size - also reservation finder here on TP can be super helpful also


#4

I also agree that I think the second plan is better for all the reasons you listed. I don’t have experience with using the reservation finder, but I think I’d give it a shot to see if you could find something.


#5

Personally, I wouldn’t take into account the “preferences” of a 13 month old. There is zero chance the child will have any memory of this trip. Instead focus more on the 3.5 year old and the adults!

Having said that, I still agree with choosing AK over Epcot for a full day. I just don’t see Epcot being terribly interesting for kids that young.

ETA: Your wife’s point is perfectly valid as well, BTW. :slight_smile:


#6

I think the counter service offerings at AK Yak & Yeti are very similar to the TS menu, aren’t they? And you can use mobile ordering for that Y&Y CS… might be ok for that rescheduled lunch.


#7

Aww, come on! The 13 month old is a family member too. The safari was one of the highlights of my son’s trip at 11 months. I will always remember that trip!


#8

If you don’t get a ressie at Rainforest, I’m pretty sure Rainforest Café is Landry’s so if you get the Landry’s club card (costs $25 but you get $25 reward loaded for first use), you can just walk up and get next available table at RFC, Trex, and Y&Y.


#9

Yes. But it is about you creating the memory, then. The child will have no memory. I’m not saying don’t do things the baby will enjoy…I just mean, when making decisions, the preferences of the 13-month-old really don’t matter so much. A 13-month-old will find SO MUCH to look at and enjoy no matter what. The role that a 13-month-old will play mostly is in preventing doing various rides (apart from rider swap).

I’m just speaking pragmatically here.


#10

So I plan on taking my two sons at ages 1 and 4 next fall, so very similar ages. We will have a longer trip, so it won’t be an either or for us, but I do think that you should do a full day at AK. With the lack of must-see (in my opinion) night entertainment at AK, I would suggest maybe doing maybe a stroller nap for the 13 month old and just calling it an early night?

When we took my older son at 11 months, we were very religious at the beginning of the trip at ensuring proper nap time to avoid melt downs, etc. But he turned out to be super flexible and we did stroller naps the whole second half of the trip. Might save your wife some back and forth even if it is just on the AK day since it is a little bit of a longer bus ride. Just a thought.


#11

I agree whole-heartedly with this. All of our kids, when around that age, would nap in the stroller without any issues at all. These kind of trips just wear them out! (Of course, once we RETURNED from the trip, we did have a few days of getting them back on schedule!)


#12

Thanks everyone! This was my first post (after reading along for almost a year) and I greatly appreciate all the input.


#13

Use the TP Rez Finder to get the Table Service you need for the plan to work. It works you just have to be on your toes. I got BOG and Akershus PPO rez one of them about a week out and the other 24 hours out. I also let a BOG dinner rez go 24 hours out because I came to terms with our plan having too much food scheduled that day.


#14

Thanks. I have now signed up for the TP Reservation Finder.


#15

After all the great advice in this forum, I talked to my wife again and we decided to make the switch in our plan to schedule a full day for AK. We will try the stroller nap and see how it goes, but knowing my son, I am not optimistic. He rarely sleeps in the car or stroller. I hope he is as flexible as your son! If my son doesn’t nap in the stroller at AK, one of us will take him back to the resort and the other will stay for the rest of the afternoon with our daughter.