Spontaneous WDW

The advent of the MyMagic+ stuff, makes the ability to be spontaneous seen as though it has gone the way of the Dodo bird.  But, after a bit of thought, it seems that there may still be the ability to do some things without having to plan it down to the second.  Let’s look at a few of those today!

Welcome to Walt Disney World
If you feel you need to make a few FastPass reservations, by all means, go ahead.  For me, I like to get primary attractions done early, and then chill the rest of the day.  I like to take in the atmosphere and maybe catch a show or two along the way.  If I’m walking by and attractions with say a 15 minute or less wait, and I want to go on it, I do.  Character meets can be fun, too!  Especially since so many of them are going the majority of the day.  Of course, I am NOT including Frozen in this plan.

If you want to eat, and not make an Advanced Dining Reservation (ADR), you can attempt a walk up request at many of the restaurants.  Since the implementation of penalties for no shows on reservations, cancellations are happening everyday throughout the resort.  In park restaurants may be the most difficult to secure on a walk up, but if you are willing to check during ‘off hours’, you may find yourself eating in a very nice place that wasn’t a part of any plan!  But, don’t forget about the resort hotels!  Some have easy access to a few of the parks, and can offer a quiet and comfortable place to recharge

Don’t forget, either, that there are plenty of things to do outside of the Theme Parks, to help you be spontaneous.  There is miniature golf, water parks, shopping at Downtown Disney (soon to be Disney Springs), and much, much more!

As you can see, there can be day-to-day flexibility that allows you to decide what park to visit, if you are willing to not see everything.  AND, it may be a more satisfying visit, also!  If you go into the vacation with the understanding that you will not see it all, then you will keep the level of disappointment in check.  And, you will know that you have reason for a return visit.

So, don’t let all of this ‘planning’ get in the way of having a relaxing, rejuvenating visit to Walt Disney World!  Just pick your dates and your resort, and let that be all of the planning you need!

Thanks for reading!  Have a Blessed and Magical evening, my friends!!

Magical Express to WDW

Magical Express Bus
Magical Express Bus

So, you’ve booked your trip to the Walt Disney World Resort in Orlando, Florida.  You’ve decided that since Disney provides all of the transportation you might need once you get there, that a rental car is an unnecessary expense. But, how do you get to your resort from Orlando International Airport (MCO)?  Simple, make use of Disney’s Magical Express service provided by Mears Transportation.  Here’s how it works!

Once you have decided to fly into MCO, and have made your package booking at Walt Disney World, make sure that your travel agent has your flight information, both in and out of MCO, and they can call to make the reservation for use of Disney’s Magical Express.  Doing this will simplify your transition from Aircraft to Motor Coach!  One of the coolest benefits is that Disney will send you special bag tags to put on your luggage.  You will check it in at your departing airport, and the next time you see it will be in your room at WDW.  You may want to pack a few things in your carry-on in case your need to change once you arrive at your resort.  Should you decide that you are more comfortable claiming our luggage at MCO, that’s fine, just leave the bag tags off of your luggage.

Magical Express  Bag Tags
Magical Express
Bag Tags

After you get off of your airplane, just follow the overhead signs to Disney’s Magical Express.  It is on the ground level of the B side of the main terminal.  It will likely take you about 20 minutes to get to this point by the time everyone makes a pit stop, gets acclimated, and find your way.  Yea, it’s a bit of a walk, but trust me, it’s worth it!!  Make sure you don’t pack your MagicBands in your checked bags, you will need them for smoother entry into the DME queue.  Disney’s Magical Express operates between 5:00am and 10:00pm.  So, if you arrive before 5am or after 10pm, you WILL NEED to claim your luggage to carry along on the motor coach.

MCO Map to DME

When you check-in for your Motor Coach, you will be told which line to queue up in that will take you to your resort.  Some coaches will service more than one resort, depending on the number of passengers.  But, generally speaking, you will be at your resort within an hour after departing the airport.  And, it’s an enjoyable ride!  There is a welcome video to get you into the magical mood.  And, you may have a driver that enjoys Disney as much as you do who will ask some trivia, point out some highlights, and interact with you along the way.

When the sad time comes to have to return to your ‘real’ home, Disney Magical Express will once again provide you with your ride back to MCO.  There is a Resort Check-In desk in each resort.  Just take your bags to that desk, and they will be checked through to your destination, and you will get your Boarding Passes.  If you have a carry on, you can leave that with Bag Services so you can visit a park, grab a favorite snack, or visit Downtown Disney before you leave.  Yes, we Disney fanatics call this the Tragical Express, but none the less, we all have to go sometime.

If you have any questions about Disney’s Magical Express, just ask!

Have a Blessed and Magical Day, my friends!!

FIRST TIME VS. SECOND, THIRD, AND BEYOND AT WDW…PART TWO

First View

In our last post, we looked at some ideas for first time guests. Today, we look at the return guest experience. If you read this blog, you are likely a fan of Walt Disney World, or pretty much any part of the Disney universe. I can tell you that, for me, return visits are just as exciting as first visits. Why? Because, it is an opportunity to have new experiences, see new attractions, take in the details, or even revisit a few favorites from previous trips.

On my last trip, I decided I wanted to experience one of the Disney World tours. So, I took the Backstage Magic tour. It was fun, but very long! It is a seven-hour tour starting and ending at EPCOT. You see something in all four theme parks, and have lunch at Whispering Canyon Cafe (my favorite part). It is also quite expensive, but if you really want to dig into some history, imagineering, and story, it’s worth taking. There are also many smaller tours at various location and prices. Look into one, if you are making a return visit in the future. Check out the many offerings at Events and Tours At Walt Disney World

As for details…It is said at Walt Disney World, you see the REAL Disney IN the Details! One of the coolest things to do is to find a bench, table, or stretch of wall to sit on for even a few minutes. Look, Listen, and Smell the details that have been put into your park experience. Did you know that most, if not all, of the areas have some background music playing at a low volume? If you are spending your time running one place to another, you likely have never heard all of the areas that have music! Look at the architecture, especially on Main Street U.S.A. in Magic Kingdom, at World Showcase, in Harambe at Animal Kingdom, Hollywood Blvd. at Disney Hollywood Studios! And, if you decide to go during Halloween or Christmas, well there are enhanced details to say the least!

My next trip, I plan on slowing WAY down and enjoying the atmosphere of the entire resort. Slightly more hotel pool time. Maybe a water park, some mini-golf, a horseback ride? I will make the minimum FPP and ADR reservations to fit my style for this trip, but probably not much else! I might even work on some romancing of the Mrs.! Yes, that CAN be done at WDW!

I guess my point to all of this is that no matter your age, no matter how many times you visit, there is something for EVERYONE at Walt Disney World! How your tour depends largely on your personality, group makeup, and goals. So, enjoy the planning. Or, if you don’t want to do all of the planning yourself, contact a Disney travel agent for assistance. If you need one, I’d be happy to help you! You can just email me at threestrandswdw@outlook.com, and I’ll hook you up with one of the fine agents at Magical Starr Travel, to official agency of threestrandswdw! Check them out at http://www.magicalstartravel.com!

Thanks for reading! May you have a very Blessed and Magical Weekend, my friends! Bye now!!