Trip Report from a better point of view

I did a short ‘highlights/lowlights’ trip report already at February Trip Report - Ride Closures and Making the Best of it, but I think I was too negative on the report, and should not have been writing while stressed! Now that I have pictures and more to share, I wanted to re-do this with proper perspective and the advantage of hindsight. Hopefully my experiences will assist someone!

This trip was for myself and DW to finally take our youngest two children to WDW (DD11 and DS9). These are the youngest two of seven children. Previously, a family member worked at WDW until her sudden passing a few years ago. DW and I had not been to the park since 2010, all other members of our family had already been there. We aren’t well equipped to take children younger than about 6 to Disney, as my wife is in a wheelchair permanently with Muscular Dystrophy and Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome.

Feb 5th - Travel Day (Mississauga, ON to Orlando)
We booked Frontier airlines for the flight, as kids fly free. The four of us could easily use one suitcase, so our total four person round-trip price for a flight from BUF->MCO was around $225. Frontier was fantastic - it felt like a decent commercial flight. The plane was clean, the people were nice, and we had no issues with the airline. Driving from Ontario to Buffalo airport was simple, and used a place called ‘The Parking Spot’ across the street from the airport which worked very well and was reasonably priced.

We arrived to MCO around 5PM, and were able to get to DME relatively quickly, which had us at Pop before 6PM for a nice ADA room. This was a last-minute change from AoA in order to get a nicer wheelchair accessible room. We were on the 2nd floor of building 10. The room was very nice, with great consideration for wheelchair needs, the only downside is how crowded the outside of the resort and the food court was throughout the trip. We would probably not stay there again, despite LOVING the skyliner.

We expected to be getting a grocery delivery to the resort, but unfortunately DW had misunderstood Walmart’s delivery policies, so we were not able to get the food delivered until the following day. We rented an ECV from Gold Mobility, and they delivered slightly later than expected, but had great customer service. The kids just wanted to swim, but unfortunately we discovered that all the pools closed at 8PM, so after arranging groceries and the ECV delivery, we missed our window. Luggage from the DME had not yet arrived and it was getting late, so we got dinner at the VERY crowded food court and then took a walk around the resort checking out the theming. Bought a resort cup, as I knew I would use it for coffee every day, and kids like filling for beverages from the machines whenever possible. To note, the coffee machines don’t actually check the resort cup chips - I could have brought any coffee mug and filled it at the resort for free. Here’s some pics from the DME and the view from the room:

Feb 6th - Animal Kingdom
We woke up to a very hot and windy day (high of 88), which made a slightly difficult transition for our Canadian-tuned systems. We ate some breakfast bars in the room, packed up some of the snacks we brought from home (since groceries would not arrive until ~5PM) and headed out to Animal Kingdom. We made it to the park right around park open, but we needed to stop at the ticket booth to activate our Canadian Resident tickets (DW and I just needed to show our licenses), then we stopped by Guest Services to get the DAS card for the family, due to some known complications with DW and DD’s Ehlers Danlos Syndrome. We ended up needing to move rather slowly into and through the park due to the heat. We saw that the Wilderness Explorers booth was open, so the kids got their guidebooks and stopped at a couple of stations on our way back to Pandora for our 9:45 AM NRJ fastpass. Before using the FPP, we stopped at FOP to get a DAS return time for later that afternoon. We used the NRJ fastpass, and I think that DW enjoyed it the most of all of us. I was very impressed with the Navi Dreamspeaker at the end (who wouldn’t be?!) but the rest of it seemed to just meander - the scenery was nice, but I would have liked to see some semblance of a story or some context around the areas we were drifting through. Afterwards we spent some time watching the robot guys in Pandora, doing the drums, getting pics taken, and walked through some of the Wilderness Explorer and jungle trek trails on our way over to Expedition Everest for a 10:45 FPP. Kids declined ‘It’s tough to be a bug’ after reading horror stories about it in other kid-oriented guides. When we got to EE, our DD declined to ride, but everyone else enjoyed it. She was able to wait with the ECV.

Around this point, the park started getting VERY crowded. We walked back towards Pandora for the FOP return time slowly, going through Dino-Land and making sure to pick up mickey bars for a snack and spend some time for DD9 at the playground. DD11 was able to cool down a bit and ended up seeking out pin trading employees up around the playground, which made her VERY happy. We had some pins from previous trips, and ordered a few more via discount packages when Disney makes them available.

When they finished playing, we went to FOP, which was the highlight of the day for everyone. All of us could not stop gushing over the vehicles, the screen, and the whole experience. Kids wanted to ride again almost immediately, but we knew that our day was already fairly full, so we offered the option to come back again on our last park day (we had an FPP booked for it on Feb 11).

It was then time for our last FPP at KS at 12:15. Wind was picking up, but that was making it slightly cooler, which was great both for seeing animals and managing DW and DD. I booked an FotLK FPP while in line to get on the Safari vehicles. After KS, we walked the Gorilla Falls Trail, but that was probably a mistake in hindsight, as we really should have eaten first. We thought the trail was much shorter than it turned out to be, especially with Wilderness Explorer stops. We immediately went to Harambe Village Market and put in a mobile order while we waited for a table to open up. It was very hot, very crowded, and with a hangry crowd this was almost too much on the day. Next time we eat earlier!

Afterwards we went to see FotLK, despite protesting from the children. DW and I thought it was a fantastic show, but DD and DS weren’t very interested. Ah, well. At that point, it was time for DW to go back to the hotel and get the grocery delivery, not to mention that DD had enough for that day, and still really wanted to swim. DS wanted a father/son dinner at Pizzafari before we ever went, so we stayed around, with the thought that DW and DD would come back to the park later for Rivers of Light and a couple more rides at night. We had FPPs booked for the family for RoL.

DS and I went around the Discovery Island trails and then to Dinosaur. A 25 min posted wait turned into a 50 min wait due to ride downtimes, so afterwards we were rushing back over to Pizzafari for our reservation. DS9 liked Dinosaur a lot - he’s probably the target age and interest for the ride at this point. At Pizzafari we had a great family-style meal, but we received the notification that RoL would be cancelled for the night. Winds were really picking up, you could smell a storm in the air, and DW and DD went swimming, got the groceries, got dinner at the Pop food court, and didn’t want to leave the hotel. DS and I went back to the hotel, but since it was early the kids wanted to go back out somewhere in Disney.

We decided on going to Disney Springs after guessing that it would be a short bus ride and short walk around. This was (in hindsight) one of the biggest mistakes of the trip. It took a long time getting to DS, it was a lot more walking than we expected to get to the kid-oriented stores, and it was even longer waiting for a bus back to our hotel. The entire time it was very loud, surrounded by numerous Argentinian tour groups chanting and singing to each other.

We were in bed VERY late for the kids (close to midnight), utterly exhausted, very sore, and cranky. Whoops. Live and learn :slight_smile: I’ll post the next couple of days tomorrow.


Feb 7th - Magic Kingdom

There was EMH at the MK today, but with the rainstorm that eventually rolled in and the extra late night, we weren’t getting up in time to make that from Pop. The storm led to very comfortable temperatures - it might be the most comfortable day of the trip. We made it to the park around 9:30 or so, mainly because I was reminding everyone how much we could get done in the morning. Our RoL FPPs had turned into anytime FPPs, so it was nice to know we had those for most rides other than 7DMT and PPF (which we already had FPPs for anyways).

Upon arriving to the park, DW and DD had a little panic attack - Main street was so full of people that you could not see a single storefront window, and navigating the ECV through the crowd was slow and stressful. I re-optimized our TP to account for the late arrival, and it sent us over to Aladdin’s Flying Carpets. We make the trip over, and during the 25 min wait, DW went to get a DAS return time for JC, since she wasn’t up to making the transfer into the carpets. JC was down, but they gave us a return time for an hour. We then went over to PotC, per the TP. Unfortunately, this was also down. We had a 10:50 FPP for BTMR (which was also down), so we kept moving and ended up at HM. We used the previous night’s anytime FPP on HM, as it’s one of my absolute favorites. Kids weren’t too impressed at 9 & 11, but they admitted it was fun and there was a lot to take in.

It was time to use the BTMR FPP, so we went over there and DD11 ended up using the chicken exit but the rest of us loved it. I just realized we have no pictures from BTMR - does that ride not have a camera system? Anyway, we then went back past PotC (still down) and back to JC. JC was back up, but the FPP line was all the way back to Aladdin’s Carpets! We made it on eventually, our family loves corny jokes and we had a decent skipper. Unfortunately, by the time we finished we were running very close to our 12:00 BoG reservation time. We picked up a DAS return time to PotC on our way over to fantasyland, but it was a long slow walk with the crowded sidewalks, and people were getting hungry and cranky.

BoG is a low-light of the trip that I summarized in my previous report. I can confidently say we will not go back there again for lunch. They were letting people in without a reservation on a very high crowd level day, the line just to order from the kiosks was 30+ min, there was no assistance with our food allergy, we ended up waiting just to be able to sit down, waiting for the food, and then waiting for a food re-order when an allergen showed up in the meal. Furthermore, the ECV could not come in the restaurant and we did not have an adequate explanation of how long we would be waiting before sitting down and eating. None of us were very impressed with the food either. The coq au vin was probably the best thing any of us had, I would recommend going to BoG for the atmosphere at any time other than lunch. We were there 90 min plus.

Our 12:25 PPF FPP had just expired when we made it over to PPF at 1:30, but thankfully they honored it anyways. It was magical as always!

We saw on the app that PotC was still down, so we walked across the street to IASW and eventually made it to the accessibility entrance for another nice sit-down ride. We kept the kids educational by going through each country/continent represented and chatting through the ride. Afterwards we walked back to PotC, but it was still down, so I went over to TSI with DS while DW and DD had a nap on one of the shady docks. DS loved TSI - he was mostly looking for pin traders, but loved exploring on his own and we even played a game of checkers in the fort where he beat me soundly. It’s a great memory for him of the trip, and one of his favorite areas. DD got to meet Chip in Frontierland just wandering, which really made her day!

PotC was finally back up, so we took our opportunity to ride it after grabbing some snacks. Everybody loved it, still a total classic.

At this point we were getting near the opening of our 5:15 7DMT FPP, so we finally left adventureland for the day and headed over to 7DMT. We picked up at WtP DAS return time on the way to get back to later. 7DMT was an absolute favorite for DD11, who was unusually nervous around coasters at Disney. She rides much more intense coasters at our usual local amusement park, but the coaster tracks at Disney being hidden behind scenery made her too nervous. She saw kids much younger than her riding and enjoying 7DMT which I think eased her fears. DS9 thought it was ok, but not very impressed. I would have rather ridden a dark ride with similar technology / scening and a longer run-time, but to each their own. While in line for 7DMT, I booked a UtS FPP.

DD hit her limit for the day and had a meltdown outside UtS, so DW and DS rode together, I booked a Dumbo FPP for everyone, then DW took DS and DD over to Dumbo while I rode UtS. The kids (while a little old for the storybook circus area) ended up loving it because off the pin trading bonanza. The park crowd had started to thin out (finally), and they were able to see CM after CM with pin trading sashes and boards. They loved it, and DW and I weren’t in any hurry to rush them out.

We then went back to go to WtP. We nearly made it onto the ride when it broke down, and they sent us all out after scanning our magicbands to give a FPP. I didn’t realize it was only going to be good for that day, or I would have used it that night!

Anyway, DW took the kids on MTP (I cannot do the spinning), and we went to the hub to settle in for HEA. I asked a CM along the way where we should park DW’s ECV, and she led us to an ADA seating area that I had no idea existed. We were the next-to-last person able to be sat there, but it was a very nice place to sit and wait for the fireworks to start.

DD11 had enough on the day - total meltdown from the crowds and noise. I don’t think she looked up once for the show, which unfortunately hampered DWs ability to see it as well, as DD wanted to bury herself in the ECV with DW. DS and I really enjoyed HEA - it may very well be the best show in any of the parks!

Leaving the park took quite some time, as there was a VAH event going on that day. We made it back to Pop, where I had to remind the family that the next day was our DHS day, and if we wanted to ride RotR, it involved a very early alarm call. Everyone but DW was excited and got to sleep very quickly, but when it came to actually waking up the next morning, only DS and I managed to get out of bed and on our way on time.

Next day or two will come later!


Feb 8th - Hollywood Studios

It was the best of times, it was the worst of times :slight_smile: DD’s stress from the previous night led to some rashes developing overnight and necessitated some extra sleep and an oatmeal bath, so as I mentioned above, only DS and I got up early and went to DHS. I was very nervous about booking our BG to say the least! We were in the bus lineup by 7AM (along with many other people at Pop) and had no problem making it into the park shortly after 7:30 AM. The plan was to RD TSM, then hit up ASS and use an 8:40 AM FPP for SDD.

We got into line near the Walt Disney Presents stage, then realized that since we weren’t waiting for SDD, we could just as easily sit by the benches near the washrooms there and watch the full line. My phone coverage was better than park Wi-fi, so I turned off Wi-fi and refreshed the app to prepare for BG. When time came, I was refreshing my status, didn’t see the button pop, so I backed out to ‘Tell me More’ and clicked through immediately. I added DS and I to the BG and was rewarded with BG 28. Success!

Unfortunately, shortly after that, they announced that since it’s a cold morning and slinky is a “hot dog” (it was approx 55F out), it would not be opening first thing. DS and I still made it onto TSM with almost no wait, but when we came out, our SDD FPPs had converted to anytimes, and ASS had a 40+ min wait. So, we went over to sign up for Jedi Training (choosing the 2:20PM show, which would give us time to finish our 12:30 lunch reservation at 50sDIT before casting call). I talked with DW, they were getting close to being ready to leave, and DD had no interest in Jedi Training. DS and I had some time to kill before our 9:50 Oga’s Cantina reservation, so we went into standby for a relatively short Star Tours line (despite having an FPP for it at 10:45). DS was singled out as the rebel spy, which really impressed him, and we went through a storyline all from Episode 9 - death star ruins followed by the end battle.

Our BG was called during the ride, but with our reservation at 9:50, we wanted to do Oga’s first and give DW and DD time to join us for RotR.

It was time to go to our reservation, but DW called and said they were close to the resort, so we walked back up front to meet her. Turns out she had taken the skyliner to Epcot, and even tapped in! Thankfully I directed her to guest services immediately and they were able to cancel her tap-in and get her back on the skyliner to DHS to join us. DS and I went back to Oga’s (albeit late) for our reservation. It was great! We shared a giant cinnamon bun, DS got a drink with apple flavored bubbles and dry ice, and I got the coffee / OJ combo drink. DS loved the added effects on his drink, and mine tasted like a good kombucha - I could have used more caffeine content, but it did taste delicious. We sat at a table which was great, and the other people with us were very friendly. I highly recommend Oga’s, and it will be even better once the crowds die down just a little bit in SW:GE.

It was now almost 10:30, and DD had a reservation for Droid Building, but still hadn’t made it back to DHS. I stopped by the shop on my way back up to the front gate and made sure she would still be able to build. They assured me that delays happen all the time with BGs and it wouldn’t be a problem.

We met with DW and DD (finally!) and talked to a CM at RotR, explaining our situation with the DAS issues, and they were able to add DW and DD to the same BG that DS and I were in. We would have loved to ride then, but it was down. We went to use our ST FPP, and I modified an afternoon IJ FPP to a TZ:ToT FPP later that afternoon. I wish I had remembered as soon as our SDD FPP went to anytime that I could have booked another Tier 1 FPP! We rode ST together as a family, and it took a long time due to DW’s ECV. Not only that, but DS and I experienced the exact same show that we had seen earlier that morning. Still fun, but not quite as great the second time around.

We went back to RotR, but it was down (again? still? Not sure.), so we then went to droid building. DD made a BB style droid, and absolutely loved it. We went for our reservation at 50’s sci fi diner, after seeing a third time that RotR was down. We had to wait about 20 min past our reservation time for a seat to open up, but the food and atmosphere was great, and everybody really enjoyed lunch and some time out of the weather.

By that time, it was time to go to Jedi Training for DS. DD and DW went to get a DAS return time for MF:SR while I waited with DS. He loved the show and the attention, and battled Darth Vader in his group. Even DD was a little jealous she opted out of it. Disney does such a great job helping kids feel special and paid attention to - I hope they never change that.

After the show, we went back to RotR - down again. However, our return time for MF:SR was available, so we headed over there at a snail’s pace among the crowds. You’ll note that we really spent most of the day in SW:GE, and a big part of that is that anywhere you wanted to go in that land took a LONG time to get there. Crowds were packed shoulder to shoulder, barely moving most places.

We had a good time on MF:SR, even though we weren’t setting any records with high scores! They had a special ‘slow-loading’ chamber for DW’s condition, which was very helpful, as when she is out of her ECV, she can’t move quickly at all. DW (who is not really a Star Wars fan, at least not like the rest of us) was done with Batuu at that point. We went back to check on RotR, and it was FINALLY up! We were able to enter the line with DW’s ECV, and they sent us through the standard line. With all the downtime that day, the wait in the queue was around one hour. The ECV can navigate through the RotR queue, although it wasn’t easy. If DW was a less experienced driver, it probably would have been a problem. Anyway, we experience the ride with a top-notch cast - the CM’s while we were there were absolutely incredible, and added to the ride experience in a way I’ve never seen before. For everyone but DW, it was an absolute joy and highlight. DW was happy to experience the new ride, but stressed that she spent another 75 min in SW:GE to do it.

Our TZ:ToT FPPs turned into anytime FPPs, as both that and RnRC went down for a little while. We went over to Toy Story Land and used those early morning converted SDD FPPs to finally ride it. It was a nice change of pace, very relaxing coaster for all of us. We enjoyed it, although not enough to want to ride it again. DW wanted to ride TSM next, so we used the other converted FPPs to ride it. Kids went to take a look at ASS but ultimately decided against it.

The kids just wanted to go back to the hotel and swim, and maybe come back to the park later for the Star Wars show. They figured it would be cancelled, since so many other things around the park kept closing. So, we went to the hotel, ordered pizza, and let the kids swim. They were swimming in the pool, and ended up in the middle of the pool, where DS (who is not a strong swimmer) couldn’t touch the botttom. DD tried to help him, but he ended up pushing her underwater. Thankfully the Disney lifeguard on duty pulled them both out ASAP, and they took towels to dry off. The lifeguard retrieved DS’s goggles from the bottom of the pool, and waited in the pool to hand them to me from the edge. Unfortunately, I slipped and I fell in the water for a moment. My cell phone (which was in my pocket) was fried - no more phone for me the rest of the trip. Surprisingly, there was no repair or replacement center for cell phones on Disney property. This was even more surprising to me given how reliant we need to be on technology to make the most of a Disney trip. This put my stress through the roof, so after dealing with the kids, trying to deal with the phone, and the late dinner, we just went to sleep.


Feb 9th - Magic Kingdom part 2
This was a relatively short day - not a total rest day, but nevertheless short. We let everyone sleep in, then went over to MK just in time for a 9:15-10:15 FPP on 7DMT to be used. DD11 is usually the hardest to get moving in the morning, so her knowing what was at stake for the FPP was very helpful - 7DMT is her second favorite ride in the park now, after FoP. On the way back to 7DMT on arrival, we picked up a DAS return time for SRS. After 7DMT, we were walking to HM when our FPP turned into an anytime FPP, so we stopped into Mickey’s Philharmagic on our way back to Tomorrowland. Kids enjoyed the show at least a little bit, but when we made it back to SRS for the DAS return, we ended up spending about 40 min in the FPP line. I couldn’t imagine the standby line! By that time, we were in time for our SM FPP. They had DW step out of her ECV, but there was no transfer wheelchair available, so DW figured she would just try and walk it, since she was feeling good at the time. In hindsight, this was a HUGE mistake. We did not realize just how much walking is involved in getting back and forth to SM. By the time we exited the ride, she was bleeding from her prosthetics and braces and in a complete pain and anguish meltdown. She went to the restrooms to clean up and relax, and I took the kids to the peoplemover (which was down) and booked a quick FPP for the Tomorrowland Speedway. Neither one of them, wanted to be my chauffeur, so we took a slow leisurely trip around that old speedway. DD11 liked it slightly more than DS9, who was in a cart so slow that it was painful to watch.

Only Dole Whips could salvage the pain at this point, so we headed over to grab a treat and check out the Enchanted Tiki Room. In all the times I’ve been to Disney, I had never actually seen it before. It was kind of a nice surprise! I’m sure I’ll go again at some point. We were then going to ride PotC, but it was down, however, HM had come back up. We used the anytime FPPs from before (and thankfully they had transfer wheelchairs!) and enjoyed the ride for the second time this trip. This time on the ride, the kids kept their eyes open the entire time, and even though we had frequent stops (perhaps an indication of March’s extended downtime?!) we had a good time.

We had booked a DVC tour for the afternoon, so after going and getting some obligatory castle pictures, we went to the Tomorrowland DVC kiosk and got a ride over to SSR. The CMs we spoke with were very chatty and helpful - getting passed from person to person to person as we finally spoke to the DVC sales rep gave us so many different points of view on Disney and the state of the parks that day. We found out about the huge number of South American tour groups this year, how ride closings were coinciding with SM maintenance, and the new things all coming in the next few years.

The DVC sales pitch had some flaws - we had asked to see ADA compliant rooms, and rooms without carpet. They didn’t have any at all to show us. The kids enjoyed playing some video games and having some snacks in their lounge, and the complimentary ice cream afterwards (and disney gift card) were nice. We’re now a month out from the pitch, and still don’t have video for ADA rooms, so we haven’t committed any money to this (and may not, at this point).

DW had enough for the day, and kids didn’t want to go back to MK without her, so we all went back to the hotel for more pool time and relaxation. I went around trying to get my phone fixed, but had no luck, so I did a little laundry for us and relaxed at the Petals bar at Pop while DW and the kids swam. Had an early night, expecting a full day at Epcot the following day - it didn’t disappoint!


Enjoying reading your report. It’s crazy how many attractions were down on all of these days. Looks like you eventually got to do everything though.

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Feb 10th - Epcot

Our Epcot day was the kind of perfect day that I’ve only ever had at Disney - it was superb and memorable in so many aspects. We didn’t RD Epcot, I had resigned myself to the knowledge that DW and DD will not RD ever. In future planning, RD will not be part of my TP with any trip/days with those two involved :slight_smile:

We arrived via the skyliner to IG around 10AM, and were delighted to walk right in the park to a short M&G line for classic Mickey just steps from the entrance. While we were waiting a few minutes to get our pics with the big Mouse himself, we saw a M&G for Goofy start up across the walkway, so we went and did that as well. The kids hadn’t been interested in any M&Gs prior to this, but there’s just something about seeing the characters wandering around the streets that is magical and draws them in regardless of age.

We were near the end of a MS:O FPP, so we made our way over there, stopping to ask for directions a couple of times to navigate the maze of walls. The art that was along the streets and walls was wonderful - DS and DD (who didn’t know what Epcot looked like without construction) treated the walls as just places for artwork, and didn’t ever mind much that we were in a tall wall maze in future world. MS:O was great and impressed everyone without making anyone ill. The games and play area at the exit was just a nice bonus - added to the feeling of ‘something to discover around every corner’. Also, crowd levels were very manageable - for the first time during the trip we weren’t in a huge sea of people. There was space to move, nobody was jumping in front of or complaining about the ECV, and the other guests were actually smiling at everyone and looking happy instead of weary.

We took a quick trip into Norway to use our FEA FPP. That was a sweet little ride, and as much as I liked Maelstrom, I didn’t find much fault with the new scenery. Snacks at Kringla Bakeri og Kafe went over well, and so did the shopping in Norway, which really appeals to DW and her Swedish heritage. We headed back into FW to the Land pavilion. This was the most crowded pavilion we saw that day, but we were able to get a DAS return time for Soarin, and by the time DW had finally made it down the elevator to the main floor and we took a ride on LwtL, it was our return time. The slow pace of LwtL was great, and there was just enough to keep the kids interested through the ride once. At Soarin’, we were in the center of the show, so there was no distortion and the kids really enjoyed it. While waiting in line, it was all seniors who were absolutely doting over the children, which they really liked.

We then moved over to the Seas, where Nemo was a walk-on, followed by Turtle Talk where we only waited for one show to finish. The kids balked at Turtle Talk, but once they were in the show, they loved it and were trying to come up with questions to ask him once they figured out what was going on.

We had an FPP at Spaceship Earth to use, which we then followed with playing some games in the SE pavilion. The energy shuffle game was a big hit!

The last stop in FW was Journey into Imagination, which was fun enough to see once, but nothing memorable to the kids, which makes me so sad because I remember how much I used to love Figment! We then spent a few minutes searching for the Chase Visa character spot, before realizing it was right next to the exit of the pavilion! We walked right in with no line to a M&G with Pluto and Minnie. That really impressed me, and the fact that the shots showed right up with no watermark on our feed was just icing on the cake.

After some snacks, we then grabbed a couple of passport books and the Figment Palette scavenger hunt from the trader’s, and headed off on a world tour from Canada to Mexico. At every pavilion, we found the Kidcot stop, had a nice chat with the cast member, and then went into the shops to find the figment painting for the festival of arts special. Canada was nice to see a bit of home. In the UK my soccer-crazy DS9 found quite a few kindred spirits and found a nice souvenir soccer ball.

In France we made sure to stop at Les Halles for some croissants and baguettes - I wish we could get them that good around here, but even Quebec can’t get the buttery taste as good as Les Halles manages. The kids were able to practice a little French with the employees while looking for the Figment painting as well!

Morocco was nice, but the incense was a little much for DD’s sensitive nose, so we didn’t stick around long. In Japan they loved the Kawaii exhibit and seeing their names written in Kanji. The Kidcot interactions were really top-notch, they had great people with great attitudes everywhere.

While at the American Adventure, there was a Broadway at Epcot concert going on at the stage, so we decided to forego seeing the AA show, and watch Broadway instead. The performers were talented, with great experience and stage presence. It was neat to see the show while just walking around, without it being behind a wall or behind a long line. It really added to the experience and ambience of the park!

Italy and Germany offered some great snacks, shopping, and beverages for all of us. It was just starting to get dark, and walking through the streets of the Africa outpost at sunset was a nice touch. The cheerleading competition of the previous few days had ended, and there were some collegiate cheer crews in a few of the pavilions just doing impromptu routines (perhaps after a few beverages?) Seeing synchronized standing backflips was a lot of fun!

The China stop took a while to find Kidcot and the painting. My feet were getting tired, and the kids were getting hungry, but we had an 8PM reservation at La Hacienda to make it to. We had a quick stop in Norway - Anna and Elsa M&G were on a dinner break, so we just moved into Mexico for the boat ride and to finish up the passports.

We were still a little early for our reservation, so we went and handed in the paint palettes to get the kid’s gift (a small puzzle in a paintcan), and to shop at mousegear a few minutes. We went back to the restaurant, and asked for a seat to view the fireworks. There was no room to park the ECV in the restaurant, but the CMs were so helpful and friendly and parked it for us across the street in Epcot after DW transferred to the table. After the SM debacle the day before, thankfully DW didn’t have to take more than 10-20 steps at a time the entire day, which really helped the healing process.

The staff at La Hacienda went above and beyond to make our meal special. After seeing portion sizes at neighbouring tables, DW and I decided to share a meal, which was perfect for us. Our server brought out some extra beans and rice for us anyways, which was more than enough food for everyone. I had booked FPPs for the fireworks, and DS and I left the table to watch them outside, while DW and DD stayed inside and watched. DW and DD really enjoyed having the quieter experience inside, and we all had a great view of the show, even though it was very short by my expectations. When we came back, we paid the bill and left a nice cash tip for everyone there who was so kind. We looked at desserts before leaving, but there was nothing the kids would really eat, so we decided to leave. While we were getting the ECV, our server ran out a plate of churros to us, and told us to enjoy and have a magical night. It really put a magical final touch on our last night at the park, and we took a slow walk the long way around world showcase with it almost empty, leaving by IG and just looking at the lights and cast members from the countries all conversing in their native languages as they packed up. It was truly an experience you just can’t get anywhere else!

We went to bed full and happy - it was an amazing day.

Feb 11th - Hollywood Studios and Travel

The DME was picking us up at 1:30 from Pop, so we had some time to spend in a park in the morning. Packing up took a LONG time, as the kids weren’t really into it, so by the time we checked out of the hotel and checked our baggage for the MDE return, we didn’t have a whole lot of time. We took the Skyliner over to DHS as the closest park, since DD was still wanting to do Jedi Training and DS wanted to ride MF:SR one more time as his favorite. So, I went back and got the MF:SR DAS return while DW signed the kids up to the standby list for Jedi Training. One last piece of Disney Magic occurred and they both made it into the next Jedi Training show from standby. Unfortunately, after the show MF:SR was down, so we just took the Skyliner back for the DME return trip.

It was an uneventful return trip, and while it was stressful at first, the retrospective on the trip is very positive. Hope you enjoyed reading, and I’m happy to answer any questions! We had a hard time finding all the ADA info we needed for the trip, so I’m especially sensitive to providing that info to those who need it.


Yes, the number of ride closures was excessive, and made my TP plans almost useless. Even re-optimizing in the app didn’t help, as it didn’t seem to recognize when rides were down or not. It’s a possible fix for the next update. Still, looking at the positives, we really did get to do most of the rides we wanted.

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I’m so glad you revisited your trip, but for those of us that have enjoyed reading it and for you to gain perspective and find some joy. If we are able to go on our planned trip in June I will definitely be interested in any ADA information since both my husband and I will be using ECVs. Fortunately we will also have two healthy 20-something’s with us to help out if needed.

Thank you for sharing your trip with us.

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It’s great to have help, and I’m so glad you enjoyed it! Where are you staying? I know in our room at Pop, it was great for one ECV but would have been very difficult for two.

The Contemporary in a roll in shower room. I mostly need it for the bench in the shower and my husband so he doesn’t have to step up and over a tub we won’t use. According to the room viewer all three of these rooms are on the first floor. This is a definite splurge for us. When we come again we will probably try to stay at POFQ. I have heard of some people with two just leaving one in the hallway right outside their door. Hoping we won’t have to do that.

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That should be a great size for two ECVs and four people, if you’re in the main tower. We had some friends who went and took pictures, and they liked it a lot. They said the garden wing’s rooms seemed slightly smaller, but quieter. I’m not sure that the roomfinder has all the Accessibility rooms labelled properly - you’re in a two-queen room, right?

2 doubles but we have 2 rooms. So we should be fine.

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How much did you use the buses vs skyliner? I’m thinking of moving back our reservation and POFQ is available at about half the price. (We originally were splurging at CR but then added Goddaughter and fiance and sucked it up to get a second CR room because of the monorail). If we had started with them in the plan POFQ would have been my first choice. It’s where we stayed at on our honeymoon in 1996. Interested in your thoughts.

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We used the skyliner whenever possible - it’s amazing, quick, and perfect for a family with an ECV. DW was loaded in first, they put blocks on the ECV, then the rest of us could travel with her.

For travelling together, you might run into slight difficulties with two ECVs in your party - the two of you won’t be able to ride together in the same skyliner cart. It will end up with the two of you being 3-5 minutes apart in arrival times when you use it to travel. If you use buses, you’ll be able to wait to get a bus together when you want.

The buses were exceptionally crowded and loud for us due to the tour groups staying at Pop while we were there, but they were also fast and reliable. We never had to wait too long for a bus going to or from anywhere we needed.

From Pop, we loved that the skyliner could drop us off at CBR if we wanted, or DHS, or the EP IG (right next to the Boardwalk). It’s really very convenient and quick, a total gamechanger for those resorts, and IMO better than the monorail ever was for me.

I’m a big fan of POFQ over CR - having all hardwood floors make a big difference for DW when she’s out of the ECV, I like the location and relative quiet of POFQ, the food is better in my opinion, and I’ve never been a big fan of boating or monorail into the MK to begin with. Nowadays, we try to only stay in rooms with entirely hardwood floors whenever possible, as DW loses balance easily on carpet and frequently trips due to her Muscular Dystrophy. POFQ is half the price and twice the benefits for our family. The only place near MK we’re considering for the future is WL / CC.

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Thanks for your input/advice. It echoes what I was already feeling. I do want to stay at a deluxe someday but I think this trip is better without it. Will the rooms at POFQ be big enough for 2 ECVs and 2 people? We would still get two rooms. If I remember you want to have either river or garden view at POFQ. We may even be able to add a couple extra days if things work out. Much to think about.

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POFQ rooms are extra long (two queen beds, or one king), so I’m sure you’ll have little issue fitting the ECV’s in there, although they might make the dressers difficult to access. If you want to stay at a deluxe, Beach Club, Yacht Club, or Boardwalk might be an option?

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We have moved our trip to end of June rather than beginning and now are in POFQ. Had to eat the cost of a 3rd party park ticket but otherwise I’m happy about it. Had an absolutely wonderful CM help me on the phone. Now I get to plan all over again lol.

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Great trip report! I’m living vicariously through trip reports during all this time home! :blush:
It’s crazy how bad the crowds were during your trip- I did not expect that for that time of year. And it sucks how often rides broke down. But I’m glad Disney usually made up for it with FPs.

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Thanks, glad you enjoyed it! I wouldn’t be surprised if that were the ‘new normal’ for February, especially once all of these virus issues slow down a bit. I spoke with one of my late stepsister’s friends (also a CM, though on the sales side) and apparently the refurbishment and construction that was heavily in progress at MK tend to wreak havoc with that park in particular, as the infrastructure is a bit more dated compared to the other parks. They limit the downtimes as much as possible, but with Splash Mtn. being refurbished on one side and Tron construction on the other side, there were frequent closures in those areas.