Just venting because I'm sooooo overwhelmed

We have planned so many trips before. But we haven’t been since 2017. Everything has changed, so many of the great websites and resources we loved are no more. My boys are real adults now, as compared to Disney Adults of 10 years old. My wife and I are older.
I’m still getting over the sticker shock of staying less than we used to and paying 40% more than we did, plus the cost of Genie+ with Park Hopping for 8 days (because I’m afraid of not getting it then everyone upset we spent more time in line or didn’t ride something).
excuse me while I go stick my head in the sand…


If you are willing to rope drop, you really don’t need G+ for Epcot or AK. Consider one park per day vs park hopping. The last two trips we have not park hopped and I felt more relaxed and enjoyed it more. Also with 8 park days, you could use G+ on one of your MK days and not the other. DHS is the one park I don’t think I could ever do without G+.

Planning does seem more overwhelming now, especially if you get in the weeds with all the tips and tricks you can find out here but remember…there a tons of people who go to Disney and do absolutely no planning and still have a great time. Ignorance can be bliss…


@JenniferB1975 Thanks :slight_smile: That is so radically different from how we have always toured. We always did rope drop, stayed thru lunch, headed back to the hotel for a break (nap when they were young, pool in later years) and then USUALLY off to Epcot for the evening (but not always). Now. I can see the value in not park hopping but losing the break seems so different.
we are planning in staying at the YC so we can go in to EPCOT at night, many of the places we like to eat dinner are there. AK was rarely a full day for us, i think we’ve been there after lunch on two trips…
We almost always got everything done in the park we were in before lunch (our record is 15 rides in MK by 12:30…but that was in the old days of original FP, younger legs on me as FP Runner and smaller crowds).
As I write this I guess, if we have park hopper tickets… I could just start stacking LL for whichever park we plan to be in at night, while rope dropping, touring planned a park in the morning. Then I just need to G+ for ONE park, Could make for some fun night time rides at everywhere but AK…


We’ve been doing resort stays only or with single park days the last few trips, so this summer was our first full 4-park day trip since 2017 as well. We hadn’t even been to HS since the year Osborne lights left!

Even with all the reading and my activity here, I was kind of stressed about so many new (and new-to-us since our kids are older now too) things at HS and also the Genie+ tactics.

Honestly - MDE and Genie+ are a pain to use efficiently - BUT I did find that I was able to navigate everything well and we even hit just about everything we wanted to in HS pretty seamlessly. And that was in August with days of feels like temps of 127° and taking mid-day breaks to head back to Swan at lunch times.

I definitely had to spend more time fighting with and watching MDE than I ever wanted to, but it worked out.

I found stacking for the later park annoyed me the most, because I felt I had to grab a LL every 2 hour opportunity then spend the rest of the day watching as the attraction times went far enough out that I could assemble all of them into a decent order for the afternoon. But, c’est la vie, I suppose.

Joel’s BG1 app helped greatly with watching the times progress in a single list rather than having to swipe in MDE 1100 times to refresh. Also, BG1 made grabbing the virtual queues super easy.

Good luck!

ETA: We only bought Genie+ for HS (full day) and for our AK day since we were not rope dropping after the MK midnight close. We did completely fine at EP and MK without it by rope dropping. We bought ILLs for GOTG and ROTR, plus VQ’d another GOTG.


We went back to WDW March (and then September) after not having gone since April 2016.

I feel this sooooo much! The learning curve for G+ can be crazy & overwhelming. I didn’t try to get into the weeds too much with all the hacks for maximizing G+ but I did focus on understanding which LLs to grab and a priority of what to get, when.

We didn’t purchase G+ for AK and had a fantastic day. We did purchase for Epcot bc we wanted to be able to get to all of the new to us (Frozen, Remy) plus all our favorites from 2016, plus wander. But you can absolutely make use of EEH/RD & get ahead. We also didn’t purchase G+ for MK but that would be a great one to use for the sheer volume of LL’s/rides. We just have a lot of those same/similar rides at Disneyland where we have a Magic Key & get to go often so I couldn’t bring myself to pay for skipping the line & we focused on what was tolerable waits, unique to WDW and favorites.

And as for the price increase, it is definitely so much more so that is always hard. When we got the chance to go a 2nd time this year we actually chose to stay offsite for many reasons but price was definitely at the top of those reasons. And we had always been of the opinion that at WDW you need to be in the bubble to enjoy and hadn’t ever even given it a fleeting thought.


We spent a week in the World in June 2022. We did not buy any extra ride stuff - Genie or LL.

“We” were DH and me celebrating 50 yrs of marriage, only a few months early, and two teens who wanted to ride everything.

DH and I were more about eating and trying out benches with only two ride priorities - Flight of Passage and Cosmic Rewind.

We had one table service reservation every day for supper and three breakfast reservations during the week.

The teens were up and out early every morning, going to the park reserved for the day. Riding everything they wanted.

They did go very early our first morning to AK to get DH on FoP - his first time. A few days later they scored a boarding group for all of us on Cosmic Rewind.

We did go back to the resort every afternoon for a bit of a nap. Heading back out most evenings for supper - at least twice at Epcot, once at AK and once at MK.

We all did as much as we wanted without Genie or LL. To be sure, our 2019 trip we used maybe one FP a day. 2018 trip was similar. Too much hassle.
Our plan of rope drop, no lines, leave the park when it starts to get crowded and the day warms up, head back out when the day starts to cool still worked.

It’s not necessary but if you want to do Genie/LL there’s a lot of info here.

eta: our trip in December is booked off property. Tho we are looking to see if a good deal opens up in DVC.


The price escalations over the past 10-12 years are hard to come to terms with (way more than inflation). DW and I were recently talking about our 2012 trip where we paid about $350/night for the Grand Floridian.

Have you considered cutting the length of your trip down from 8 days to 5 or 6? That is a good way to make up for the additional costs of G+ and ILL. We have been staying 5 nights the past few trips.


I can tell you I was at the point you are at, if not even farther gone. We had 8 nights back in November and it was our first trip. All park days, no resort breaks - full tilt. I was mad at the nickel and dime game, the changing G+ rules (and they’re changing again!), the stress of ADRs, I resented the folks playing the system, making everyone else have to catch up, and I was ready to cancel the vacation. I had a mentality of “as long as I’m not on fire or in jail by the end, I’ll walk away and be done forever”. I was back within 8 months!

The trip came up, and even though I still had many things to learn, I was able to roll through all the extra “stuff” and have an amazing trip. We accounted for G+ and $LL for each day, and rope dropped many as well. We wanted maximum ride time and minimal wait time. We crushed G+ and that was before I figured out drop times.

It’s stressful now, but in the moment of being in the park, it really doesn’t have to be. You book your next ride and then go to it or go do something in the interim. Some people set alarms to remind them of their next booking window or upcoming drop times. Set it and forget it. As mentioned, rope drop is a great way to maximize the day, but presents another strategy challenge. If done well, you can have a magical morning and then roll into a magical evening with stacked lightning lanes.

As mentioned, lots of people get by without G+, but that’s a personal choice and should be based on your budget, tolerance for waiting and crowd levels.


There is a lot to learn and it is complicated. I completely get how you are feeling.

If I were staying at YC, I would 100% have park hoppers. If I was looking to save money I would shave off a day instead.

With that many days you may not need to buy G+ everyday. Many people are successful without it. My default is to buy it, but there is usually at least one to two days I can get by without it - for a party of 4, thats’s a savings.

Good luck! The magic is still there, it is just harder to get to.


I agree with this - we had never used PH before, but this last trip staying at Swan it was very much worth the convenience and optionality.

I probably would still think twice about PH if staying at a non-Crescent Lake or non-Skyliner resort, but with my kids being older now I think we’re probably PH FOREVER now. They loved the idea of “Hey, I’m jumping into EPCOT for some food!”


I completely agree with this. If I were at the Contemporary I would as well - with MK open layer itnis easy to hop over. But otherwise I can do without.


Wholeheartedly agree. Dinner in a different country every night! Woo hoo! LOL I am biased as World Showcase is my favorite Disney park. I mean Epcot, nope I mean World Showcase!


This is the real attraction to staying at YC… We need more nights…to hit all the restaurants we love… oh well. I have no idea when we will return again… We used to stay 10 nights…and are doing 7 nights this time. We’ll get 7.5 days in the parks since we decided to do the Autotrain going back home - i’ll be exhausted by the end…


I know some people who live using Standby Skipper to book their LL.for them. It is $45 for the week and could take some of the stress away. I know that is one more purchase, but its just a thought.

I am going to use it this weekend. Certainly makes 7:00 easier.


I’m so sorry you are feeling stressed.

I will echo what’s already been said. G+ kind of sucks. It is not user friendly and it is annoying to have to wake up early every day to book @ 7 am. We have utilized RD + LL drops during previous trips. This last trip in august was the first time we’ve ever gone and not done RD and I really enjoyed it. More than I expected to.

Now that your kids are full blown adults do they have different priorities than before? Do they know how overwhelmed you are feeling with planning? Is there anyone else in your group who would be willing to help out getting everything organized?


If you are Rope Drop + Afternoon Rest + Park Hop people, I actually think Genie+ might work out just fine for you. You might not need it for Epcot some evenings, but if you decide to go to HS some other evenings that could make a great stack opportunity (stack-ertunity?)

I know it’s a LOT to learn. I like the way this content creator explains the system: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Om7qsAG_2TQ


thank you every one who responded. i’ve toned down the anxiety quite a bit. as the next months go by I’ll get a good plan set up. I appreciated everyone who understood :slight_smile:
the most important thing is we are going to be back in WDW after a 7 year hiatus, and we will all be there. I might hazard a guess that it will the last time to WDW for just our family…



I did find that taking a break from Disney planning helped my Disney planning.


I’ll take one thing off your anxiety list: Genie+. IT IS NOT NECESSARY. We visited last year on some crowd level 7 and 8 days without Genie+ or purchasing individual lightning lanes, and saw everything in our touring plan. That’s the key thing: Use the Touring Plans software to optimize the best touring plan for your group. The crowds now and the predicted crowd for the next few months (with exception of holidays) are much lower than what we saw last year.

I just saved you $1000+ and took one thing off your plate. To everyone: GENIE+ AND ILL ARE NOT NECESSITIES!