Three questions about evening shows

Question 1
Has anyone done the Fantasmic Dessert & VIP Viewing package? How strict are they about the time you arrive to collect your dessert and find your seat?

Question 2
Which would you rather do? Watch IllumiNations somewhere in World Showcase, or watch HEA from the balcony of your room in the Contemporary?

Question 3
If you have an FPP for Soarin’ and for Spaceship Earth, once you’ve done both of those, can you then try to find an FPP for IllumiNations?

No idea on Question1, never done it.

Question2: Easy question; IllumiNations. I’m not a fan of HEA.

Question3: Not until you’ve tapped into your 3rd advance FPP, or let the window pass.

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Really? I’ll be seeing HEA close-up earlier in the week. It’s just that as I’ve mortgaged my house to pay for one night at the Contemporary, I feel I should make the most of it. Otherwise why did I switch from BC?!

So I book an early FPP for something I don’t care about and just don’t show up to it. Then search for an FPP as soon as I’ve tapped in to my third FPP.

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IDK, that one’s on you.

This is a usable strategy. May I suggest a rope-drop Nemo?

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Besides, if you wanted to see HEA from the Contemporary, I feel like a California Grill reservation would be cheaper than a room switch to CR.

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Well, there you go being all practical!

It’s dangerous, though. Matt might just rearrange his entire plan.


I have no doubt that rearranging his plan was the basis for these questions.

I also note that he failed to name this thread “Profgate: Three questions about evening shows”


  1. Have not done. Cannot say.

  2. Illuminations because HEA is best viewed in the park so as to be able to see the projections

  3. You first have to use a second tier 2 but then yes. But it’s not worth it. People line up to get into the space an hour ahead, which is sort of counter to the whole point of getting a FPP for it. There are better places to watch from.


But he hated CaliGrill.

Well… again, that seems to be his problem.

I bet he could find an appetizer or dessert that would allow him to enjoy both the food and the show. But that’s just my guess.

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  1. Haven’t done it so I can’t say

  2. I love Illuminations. I haven’t seen HEA in person yet, but the video look fantastic - but you won’t be able to see many of the projections, and the FW will not be "over’ the itsy bitsy castle; they’ll be behind and to the side. Illuminations gets my vote.

  3. I agree with @OBNurseNH on this. There are so many places to watch Illuminations, the FPP is pretty much a waste of time.

Might? There’s no “might” about it! Have you learnt nothing yet? :joy:

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Well, to clarify, I meant he might rearrange his ENTIRE plan, rather than just his on-going tweaking of a few (dozen) things, which is a given.

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Did prof matt not make a promise about not changing his plan for a few weeks? Lol

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I can’t specifically help with #1, but we did the fireworks dessert & VIP viewing at WDW in October and the Fantasmic dessert party at Disneyland a couple of years ago, so I’m guessing I can help a little. For the fireworks, they gave us a window of time to show up and find our seat. We came toward the middle of the window and got seated right away. It didn’t matter where we sat for dessert because when we were done eating, they escorted us to our viewing area in front of the castle. There were also plenty of desserts / snacks, so that wasn’t an issue.

For Fantasmic viewing at Disneyland, it was necessary to get there early because we were seated for the show before we got dessert. In other words, first come, first served, and the chairs were in rows so late comers had to sit behind other people.

My guess is that if you pay, you’re guaranteed a spot no matter when you get there. Just not sure if arrival time makes a difference for seating.

Also, for the fireworks party there was a ton of food, including cheese and fruit, so don’t eat before you go!

Clearly I’ve abandoned the pretence that I’m not making any more changes!

I was calmly reviewing the latest draft and my mind turned to the evening entertainments.

I’ve got HEA covered — I’ll do the dessert party as soon as Disney bothers to put up the date I want.

I wasn’t going to do Fantasmic because I’m at DHS on the day TSL opens and I thought that Fantasmic might draw the crowds away, leaving me free to explore TSL all by myself. But, as excited as I am about TSL, I can’t let it dominate all my plans. I’ve already scheduled 10 hours there on opening day. Surely at some point during that time I’ll be able to get some TSL action in. So Fantasmic is in the schedule.

I’ve got ROL covered with my VIP tour.

Which leaves IllumiNations. Originally I wasn’t going to do that at all because the plan was to return to the Contemporary to see HEA from my room. But in practice I’m not sure how great that’s going to be. I saw HEA from CG last year and it was a bit blah, to be honest. HEA is all about the projections for me. So IllumiNations is in.

As for: why the Contemporary. Well, originally I booked BC which meant on leaving day I could walk to DHS or Epcot from the hotel. But they’re already allocated decent time in the schedule and none of the dining options appeal — because I will already have done the ones I want to do earlier in the week. So I was struggling to think what I’d do.

Which is where the Contemporary came in. Walking to MK on the last day certainly has appeal and — per one of my other threads — I eventually settled on a dining option. In terms of enjoying the view from the room, I think the view of MK at night when I get home from Epcot, and the view in the morning when I have breakfast on the balcony, will make it worthwhile. Plus the convenience of being able to walk to MK.


I don’t think its May 1 yet, so I am pretty sure @profmatt wouldn’t even think of rearranging his plan. . . .

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Interested in this b/c we booked this for the first time for our upcoming trip. . . .

I did the Fantasmic dessert part in Decmeber and loved it. It’s very inexpensive compared to the other parties, but it’s because it’s really not a party. You pick up your box and a drink (which comes in a light up collectible cup) and then go find a seat. The seating was AMAZING. We were right in the middle in the front and it never got too crowded around us. We got there pretty early (about 30 mins before the show) so I can’t speak to the timing. But I would definitely do it again.

My reservation has me scheduled to arrive 70 minutes before the show, which seems ridiculous and slightly negates the point of booking the “party”. Which is why I’m asking about arrival time, because there’s no way I’m going to arrive that early and sit on those uncomfortable benches munching blocks of cheese.