Planning our trip for February. Four adults, four kids. All others in our party are happy to just show up and not worry about the planning. Currently I have planned for my parents, my husband and myself to have dinner at V&A’s and hiring an in room sitter for our kids. We all like good food and think everyone would appreciate this meal however I have also recently though how my parents may enjoy a “grandparents night” with our kids while we have dinner. I booked an ADR for Coral Reef (when we went as kids my parents said we loved it and they have such fond memories of our trip, looking at the aquarium, etc.) but I want to get their opinion and am almost certain if I ask them now (“oh mercy! That’s still so far away!!”) I’ll get little to no input much more than “oh whatever you think sweetie! We’re fine with whatever!!” Which they truly will be (and I’m unsure of how forthcoming they will be with their actual opinions as we are paying for the trip and they simply feel very grateful to be coming along) but I would value their input! Do you guys tend to have better luck getting opinions from the non-planners in your party closer to the actual trip date?? Wondering if I should just wait until it’s closer…say January…to see if they will have a helpful opinion then. But I feel a little guilty holding on to the ADRs…
The timing of this is perfect. I am planning a trip for 8 of us in December. I have been planning it since early this year and am the only planner in the group. I don’t mind doing it, I actually enjoy it. However, my group has never been to WDW before and are overwhelmed by attempting to even give me input. I asked for input around where they would like to eat, gave menu samples to read…nothing. When it came time for planning for FP+, I created a spreadsheet that listed all of the attractions, by park and included height restriction, link to POV Youtube videos and the Official Guide summary of the ride…not one drop of input. It has been really frustrating to say the least. So, I booked the FP+ based on my best guesses. The other people in the party are my fiance’s kids and their kids so it is a difficult position for me, it is not a typical close-knit family dynamic. I don’t want to bug them too much but also know how important a plan is. My biggest fear is that we will get there and they will either 1) hate it or 2) be disappointed that there are long lines for the rides they want to ride because they didn’t tell me they wanted to ride so I couldn’t plan accordingly.
Sorry, that little rant has been building for a while
We are less than 60 days out and the non-planners still haven’t shown much interest so I don’t know that I have any advice but hopefully someone will have some ideas!
Yes and no. You’ll likely get more enthusiasm to talk about things the sooner it’s upon you, but the answer will likely still be rougly the same because they have no current frame of reference to draw from aside from your opinions.
Annnnd probably they don’t care because “Everything is good” in Disney. It’s like asking “do you want double chocolate cake or triple chocolate?”
When I took my mom, it took up to 2 weeks before we left before she suddenly wanted to know everything, but the choices were all still “whatever you pick is fine.”
I would ask them just to see, but if they say they are fine with whatever then they are more than likely going to be happy with whatever you choose. I know it would be frustrating because you want input to make your trip amazing, but the grandparents are probably just thrilled to be along for the ride and watching their grandkids have fun. I know that is how it would be with my parents at least. If your parents have fond memories of Coral Reef then that might be fun for them to watch their grandkids in that same setting. I would say they will get excited once you are there. Not everyone gets that it takes weeks and months of planning as well as making decisions that far out.
My parents have been quite a few times - 1 more than me actually! - but never done TS. I’ve sent them a list of the ADRs I’m planning and told them to read menus and reviews, because come ADR day that’s what I’ll be booking unless they tell me different. They’re not going to know what they’re missing elsewhere though.
LOL, I’ve done the exact same thing. Included pros/cons of each. Crickets. Or “that sounds great honey”.
It’s so frustrating when you spend hours of your life wrapping your mind around every last possible detail, distilling the universe of infinite possibilities down to a handful of experiences best suited for your family’s unique (and often contradictory) tastes, desires, and budget, and then you can’t get someone to spend 15 minutes understanding the questions or trade-offs in enough detail to offer constructive feedback. Ugh
I’ve had the best results by asking qualitative questions (“would you prefer to spend the whole day at the park and not feel rushed, or would you prefer an offsite afternoon break even if it means having a stricter ‘schedule’ to follow?”) AND questions about specific things (“do you think Expedition Everest would be too scary for our 6 year old? It goes and here’s a video of it…” That usually gives me enough information to factor in everyone’s tastes but without needing to involve them in the details.
Oh, and definitely ask one question per email or phone call or whatever - asking too many things at once is a great way to make a non-planner’s eyes glaze over!
The non-planners that I know best definitely get more interested in weighing in as the event gets closer. I’d make your ADRs now, then around the holidays carve out some time to share your plans with everyone. Maybe say “this is what I have set up, but I can try and find an open reservation for if you’d like that more?” and then put the Res Finder to work.
Oh man, y’all. At least I’m not in this boat all by myself!! Thank you for all of the encouragement and advice. I think I will at least ask my mom…I KNOW my dad wouldn’t even let me finish asking the question before cutting me off and telling me he doesn’t care. Ha! I’m so glad I have all you people to share plans and questions with. The planning is what makes me so excited for the trip!! I tried to talk to my DH about EMM at TSL the other day and he glazed over after about 30 seconds and said “just tell me when to show up, babe.”
this rings so true to me as well! I tried to plan a nice trip with my bf, & he answered every quesstion with “whatever you want to do, sweetheart”. Arrrggghhh! I told him that while I was ok making all the decisions, if we got there and he said something like “oh hey that ride looks fun, can we do the 7 dwarfs mine train?” and i hadn’t known and so had no fpp for it, I would be miserable and cry at him. It did work out- he had no complaints about the trip, but I really sweated bullets for the 4 months leading up to it. Some people really do enjoy just going along with your plan and can enjoy themselves in any situation, but it’s more fun to plan with people who have some opinions! The worst case scenario is people who have opinions they won’t share, until it’s a complaint- hopefully no one you’re traveling with is in that camp!
Lol!! Thankfully, I have been to WDW with this same crew before and they genuinely are happy to go along with whatever I have planned. They DID thank me while we were there because they did recognize that I had put in a lot of work to plan out our trip. So I do know I’ll be appreciated but its a tad lonesome being the only one excited currently! I do have my two year old requesting to watch POV videos of SDD though so that’s something right?? Of course that may backfire on me when we get there since she is a little peanut and likely won’t be tall enough to ride.
I am the planner and my kids and DH go along for the ride. I ask them for favorites and what they would like to do again. I get some answers, but I wouldn’t say they are excited. Most of the time after that, I get “You know what you’re doing. We trust you.” I finally have learned to go with it. My family gets excited the day before and throughout the trip. We had a few ADRs that were meh, but it rolls off our backs and my DH is like, whatever, we are in Disney World. It helps I also told them they are not permitted to complain to me if they aren’t going to give me their opinions.
Oh and part of the planning is knowing how to get extra FPs in park, knowing what to do in a pinch if something or someone is not going as planned, and how to navigate the park throughout the day to avoid the crowds. So if you have that down, some spontaneity is much less stressful.
I agree with this. I think having a good touring plan allows for more (useful) spontaneity. It is a bit of an oxymoron, I suppose…but to be spontaneous at Disney World, you really should have a good plan!
Ha! That is funny to think about but true. I’m hoping I can navigate the parks a touch better this time around. Last time I kept thinking “I’m IN the map and I can’t picture where I am!”
I think my wife was beginning to get annoyed by me and by all my questions. I just wanted her to feel included but I have to admit that there is little useful input you can give if you are not involved in the planning. I asked her to review my preliminary TPs and for her it was all pretty incomprehensible and meaningless. When I asked her stuff like ‘‘at what time do you think we should see FotLK; considering the fact that the kid will want a turkey leg at Y&Y and the time of day when the animals will be most active for KS ?’’, she looked at me blankly and told me I was a dork and way overthinking all that stuff…
At first I was a bit bummed but then I realized I controlled everything and I could just decide everything by myself !!!
Yup! The place seems so different once you’re actually there and walking around. I remember studying the maps like crazy before I went and then still getting completely lost once I was there.
The good news is that you likely will have a much easier time now that you’re familiar with the layout.
I have another issue. While it may be annoying to planners to have non-planners they are “working with” on a Disney trip, there are negative sides to having two planners.
See, my wife is hugely organized and a major planner. I’m not so organized, but also a major planner. We keep doing a ton of research for our upcoming trip. My wife is primarily getting her information from tons of different Vloggers. I’m getting most of my information from…here!
Anyhow, we try to pool our information together. But sometimes tensions form when we have come to completely different conclusions based on our research on how things should go. But to compromise one or the other kind of undermines the whole of either.
So, ultimately, one or the other of us has to let go of our plan for the sake of the other…but sometimes that then causes further problems.
For example, when planning out what parks we visit on what days, I’ve tried hard to accommodate a myriad of factors, including her preferences of what things we want to do, plus what resorts we plan to do.
After presenting my absolutely beautiful preliminary plan to my wife, she questioned why we don’t do one of the park days on a DIFFERENT park day to take advantage of EMH. Of course, it is valid…but doing so then rearranges pretty much EVERYTHING else I already did!
I have no doubt we’ll get it all sorted out. After all, we have more than 2 years to do so!
But in the meantime, it is worth remembering that while you might WISH you were working with planners rather then the non-planners, there is a down side to that! In the meantime, take solace in knowing that the non-planners are placing their trust in you, as the planner. They will be happy no matter what, but they trust that you, the planner, will make the best decisions. This only leads to their additional seemingly carefree attitude. Why worry about when so-and-so will take care of everything for us?
Just don’t let the planning go from doing something because you want to/like to, to something that is placing a lot of stress. Don’t stress. Just plan.
You just described my experience perfectly. My idea of planning involves spreadsheets, crowd calendars, multiple touring plans, contingency plans, and 1000 revisions. Hers is “let’s do Magic Kingdom on the first day and AK the second. I don’t want to ride anything that spins, but you and the kids can. Fireworks sound good.”
This is sooo true! I was so excited last week because I had booked our fast passes and revised my plan - I shared with my fiance and I think at one point his eyes glazed over. But, like you said, I control it all and I am ok with that
For me, the payoff was when we got to the park and my wife told me that I had it planned to a tee. She said it couldn’t have gone any better. I think she realized all of my planning had paid off. But it was super frustrating leading up to the trip.
very very true! Thank you for add that perspective!