Trip report: Disney with two little kids and a reluctant husband

Oh my glory be. How many trips to GS did you have to make?!? I must say I am very impressed with you being able to keep your head on and firmly advocate for your family in regards to those difficult CMs.

7D was down when my family did DAH in February and it was so frustrating. They wouldn’t give us anything compensatory - not even a single FP the next day. Granted, the whole park is open during that event versus EMM where so much of the appeal is 7D.

My DH is much like yours in that he hates - HATES - crowds and I’m pretty sure if we had an experience like yours it would be extremely difficult to get him to go back. Hopefully you can read him all of these comments and he will maybe see that the trip y’all had is far from what a normal WDW vacation typically looks like.


You’re not terrible parents. We’ve all been there. I’ve been through more meltdowns than I can count with my sons.

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I’m sorry OP.
I’ve never read anything like this. The closures would have seriously disappointed me. And I’m always sad when the weather ruins a day.

If vacation time and resources allow, I encourage an every other day schedule. We’ve taken out family to Disney 7 times at a variety of ages and have found that a nice pace for us. It’s not always practical, for sure.

Speaking about meltdowns… My DD4 had a major one in the Star Tours gift shop. She had a serious crush on Darth Vader at the time and refused to leave without the 3 foot tall statue of Lord Vader. It turned really bad with CM helping me remove DD4 from the store and save the merchandize. Now, 3 years later, we all laugh at this, but it was not as funny when it happened.


Great trip report.

Sounds like there were some exceptional challenges for you. And it sounds like you made the most of it just the same! I’m glad your DD was feeling better about Belle! It sounds like you had some really bright spots and made some great memories. I do hope you’ll go back at some point. Maybe solo :wink:

This is no judgment on you or how you handled things and I definitely feel like there was some compensation due for you at times, but did it ever feel like the time you spent in line for GS was equivalent to the time you could have spent in line for an attraction? I know this being a written format it probably is coming across meanly and I really don’t mean it that way st all. It’s a genuine question of at what point do you just call it and move on?

What sparks my question is a discussion recently in which a podcaster said that Disney’s response to all guest complaints nowadays is to throw FPP at them. But my thinking is - that’s all they know to do because that is all guests are asking for. If compensation is due then that is what should be given. For example I loved that your sci fi meal was comped. That’s what should have happened. I guess what I’m getting at is whether it’s time for us as guests to demand actual resolution to problems rather than demanding or accepting FPP for anything and everything that goes wrong.


I hope you have recovered from your trip! Sounds like you handled it beautifully! 2 things…most of the time other people are just thrilled that it wasn’t their kids turn to melt when yours does…and my 3 year old nephew refused to do most of the rides on our only big family trip!!! (My Dad had a stroke the week before we left and had to cancel so I fully relate to a cursed trip!). I love that you still found some fun!

We definitely spent more than our fair share of time trying to sort out our Fast Passes. I didn’t even include all of our trips to Guest Services. There were a few more times when MDE retained an old FPP that we had already used and it was keeping us from booking a new FPP or from modifying an existing FPP. After our umpteenth visit, we were told that MDE was having ‘itinerary issues’ and that, for some guests, including us apparently, MDE had been having issues with Fast Passes for a few weeks.

Typically, during our visits CMs weren’t be able to see all of our Fast Passes, weren’t able to modify many of our Fast Passes, and wouldn’t be able to tell if the Fast Passes they added were on our account. My husband and I were both logged into my account with my password on our respective phones and we never ever saw the same FPP in MDE. I think this is why CM kept saving over existing FPP. I’m not sure what we did to deserve that special kind of hell, but it was an ongoing issue. Every visit was a whole saga with a new CM.


Um … is this one of the sites where we’re not allowed to ask how to smuggle alcohol into the Magic Kingdom?? :rofl:

I have a planning question, how do you prevent the scanner from taking your anytime FPs?


Smuggle away - how can I help?? :grin:

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This shows the limits of FPP as a cure all for disappointment. It’s only a solution if you can actually use them.

Great job rolling with the punches @planplanplan! Hope your girls are still talking about what a fun time they had! Funny how time can make the frustrations fade away and the true magic moments stand out. Not every vacation is floating from activity to activity with no effort and only joy- love your honest assessment, the good and the challenging, and hope you are able to laugh and enjoy the memories.

At least for me, a lot of my worry comes from feeling like I’m subjecting my kids to things that should be fun but that actually make them miserable, for the sake of “memories” or for the sake of my own fun or whatever. Hearing from my kids that they still think about our trip with positive thoughts and want to go back really is all that matters. Just like not everyday at home is perfect, but after a while it all blends into a generally positive feeling about your days.

My DD4 melted down in HS crying and said she wanted daddy (I took my mom with me and the kids… truthfully as a practice run since my mom is much more patient than DH lol) after just doing the Disney Jr. show, toy shopping, and Little Mermaid. So a whole day of park tickets on just 2 things and about 2 hours total. But it was about 199 degrees and humid and she was done. The trip is about the kids having fun, and she didn’t want to be in the park anymore, so we left (abandoning a FPP for TSMM and a dinner ADR for H&V). She tapped out at the Halloween party too before the first parade… so maybe 4 hours use on those tickets. No big deal but not what I expected. 9 months later she still talks about how much fun WDW was to basically everyone she meets, and has become obsessed with Disney even more than before… so we are going again next spring. This time with DH. It’s going to be a sh*t show I’m sure but bring it on. :partying_face:


I love Disney but I too find the planning, 60 day Fast passes, 180 day ADRs and waiting for transportation very stressful. I live in California and you do not have to do the kind of planning for Disneyland like you have to plan for WDW. This may change with SWGE opening in May. We are planing for our upcoming trip to WDW in September. It’s been few years since we have been to WDW. I wanted to go when the crowds were lower and less stressful but that has changed, now that Disney threw a wrench in my plans opening SWGE early!! Couple of the changes I made when planning this trip to WDW… is to rent a car, no more waiting for a magic bus. If some of us need to go back to the resort during a park day then I can use the magic buses but I do not need to depend on them. I did very few ADR, the counter service will works well for my family. We are only doing 3 table service meals. This way I do not have to try re-book an ADR when I could not get a FP for a certain day at a certain park. This has taken a lot of planning pressure off of me. This trip I am really going to try to enjoy the family, ride and see what we can. Who know what the crowds are going to be like with the SWGE thing. I want my vacation to be fun and not full of stress. At least that’s what I am telling myself each day until we arrive in September. Sorry, you and family had so many stressful experiences. Hopefully you will give it another try in a year or two. Enjoyed reading your trip report!!


Dear God. After having an anxiety attack while reading your first couple of days but hoping things would get better… this threw me over the edge. I am so sorry, this sounds like a super frustrating trip.


Sounds like an old fashioned Disney World vacation from the 80s! :slight_smile:


You enjoyed reading this?? Are you some kind of monster?! :wink:


Not quite sure what you mean by this. I enjoyed reading her trip report and felt bad by all that she and family went though. So if that makes me a monster, I feel bad for your narrow mindedness. It very easy to call someone a name when you are behind a computer screen.
Have a magical day!!

She was making a joke, not really name calling.


Are you sure? I did not see any LOL, Bahaha, or laughing emoji so I did not take it as a joke. It just came off a little rude that’s all. Thanks

Yes, Going to Disney back in the 80s was much easier.

My DD19 and I were at WDW exactly when you and your family were. We were caught in the big afternoon thunder and lightening storm on that Sunday too, but we were at AK…aka the Big Outdoor Park…We were prepared with good rain ponchos but you can’t walk around when it’s lightening all over the place. We ironically sought shelter with about twenty others under a metal roof in Asia! It all turned out fine. We kept saying, “Welcome to Florida!”.
As a mother of a son and daughter 3 yrs apart, all I can tell you is traveling with kids gets better. You need to know your children and what they can handle. That the best recipe for a good vacation. Unforeseen things happen and cause stress but WDW can be super overwhelming for kids under 6. We luckily lived close to DLR during our kids younger years so we had APs, and could leave for home when they were tired. Early trips with our kids were to island/beach locations that offered kids clubs, family activities, and welcomed couple time. This is my opinion but I would recommend not returning until the children are more mature especially with their father not being enthusiastic about WDW. I give you so much credit for your strength!