Remy Chef's Table on Fantasy

My Disney Bucket List

This time of the year, cooped up from the cold, is a great time to daydream about vacation plans.  We’re thinking into the future, about planning around school schedules, balancing Disney and non-Disney adventures.  Here is a sampling of the fun we dream of for the future-

Pony Ride at Fort Wilderness
Ok, this one is obviously for the kid.  There is so much recreation at Fort Wilderness that I could easily list any of it on my wish list.  Having a kiddo who has enjoyed pony rides at festivals and fairs at home, I’m itching for him to have the Disney experience too.  On his next trip he should be the perfect combo of age and size to have a great pony ride experience.

Stay in a Fort Wilderness Cabin
Continuing in the same vein, I would like to stay in a Cabin at Fort Wilderness one time.  This would be part of an overall laid-back trip, and I imagine having a full Fort Wilderness experience with lots of Trails End, Hoop Dee Doo dinner show, a carriage (or wagon or sleigh) ride, campfire sing-a-long, and archery.

Copper Creek 1 bedroom villa master king bed

Copper Creek Villas – 1 Bedroom Villa Master Bed

Stay in a Copper Creek Villa
Wilderness Lodge is one of my favorite resort experiences, and after touring the new villas I’m chomping at the bit to stay in one.  In person, the luxurious camp design feels right and modern.  This will likely be the next place we stay when using our DVC points.

Animal Kingdom Lodge Kilimanjaro Club Level
I’m always eyeing ways to sneak a Club Level stay in at a deluxe hotel.  So far we’ve stayed Club at the Contemporary, Polynesian, Grand Floridian, Wilderness Lodge, and the Boardwalk.  Kilimanjaro Club is often regarded as one of the best Club experiences, so it’s a natural progression to stay here next.  We love the unique savanna experience at Animal Kingdom Lodge, and soon the kiddo will be old enough to appreciate just how cool that is.

Walt Disney World’s 50th Anniversary
We don’t plan vacations around park anniversaries, but I think we’ll make an exception for Walt Disney World Resort’s and Magic Kingdom’s 50th Anniversary in October 2021.

VIP Tour
We’ve done several tours, but the VIP Tour holds the crown as the top tour experience.  This private tour comes with your own VIP Tour Guide and lets you design your day with the help of your guide.  We have no plans to book one, but maybe one day we’ll treat yo’self.

Fantasy Inaugural Cruise banner

Disney Fantasy and Inaugural Cruise Banner

Alaska Cruise
An Alaska cruise aboard a Disney Cruise Line ship checks off so much on a travel wish list.  Glaciers, temperate rainforest, the Last Frontier, whales, Minnie in an adorable fur coat, what’s not to love?

Basically all of Disney Cruise Line’s Itinerary
Ok, I would sail on nearly every itinerary offered by Disney Cruise Line.  From the Southern Caribbean to Norway, from Panama Canal to the Mediterranean.  A cruise lets you sample new destinations all while unpacking your bag once.  Even more fun is on the horizon…

Cruising Aboard Disney Cruise Line’s Three New Ships
From 2021-2023 one new ship a year will debut in Disney Cruise Line’s fleet.  Besides being excited for the new ships themselves, I’m doubly excited for the expanded itinerary offerings of 7 ships.

Remy Chef's Table on Fantasy

Private Chef’s Table at Remy on Disney Fantasy

Disneyland Paris
Disneyland Paris is the most easily accessible international Disney park for those of us in the Midwest.  I look forward to visiting what’s often called the most beautiful Disney park and seeing their stunning castle in person.

Adventures by Disney Danube River Cruise
I could barely contain my excitement when Adventures by Disney first announced they were starting family friendly river cruises with AmaWaterways.  I’d been eyeing river cruising, seeing that it wasn’t family friendly, and putting that off in my mind for a few decades.  We have a few years to go before our family will be the right age for this experience, but I’m excited to make it a reality.  To top it off, they offer special holiday sailings to coincide with Christmas market season.  Bam!  Two bucket list items rolled into one!

Ticket Price Change

Admission prices for Walt Disney World and Disneyland were adjusted on Sunday, February 11, 2018.  This price change takes effect immediately for stand-alone ticket purchases.

Ticket prices will be updated on vacation packages by February 21, 2018.  Right now is the perfect time to jump on booking your 2018 Disney vacation package.  By booking before the package ticket price change, you lock in your ticket prices!  If you make a change to your tickets after booking, your ticket prices take on prices at the time the change is made.

Booking your 2018 Walt Disney World package early can be one of the best ways to save money on your trip.  The earlier you book, the more hotels and room types there are to choose from.  The closer to your travel dates you book, the more likely your preferred hotel and room choices will be sold out.

Request your free, no-obligation Walt Disney World quote today!

Unique Summer 2018 Walt Disney World Meal Offer

A unique offer is back for summer 2018 Walt Disney World packages.  This offer includes one free quick service meal per person, per night of your package. This offer is only available at value hotel rooms, and for summer travel dates May 29 to August 25, 2018.  Booking on this offer only lasts through February 11, but offer availability may sell out before then.

If you prefer a full Disney Dining Plan, you can choose to upgrade your meal plan.  The discount remains the same when you upgrade to a full dining plan.

Now is a great time to get a jump start on planning your summer vacation! Request your free Walt Disney World quote anytime!

expedition everest

Summer Meal Offer

Get a jump-start on your next fun-filled escape – especially when you can enjoy a little extra flavor. You can delight in one FREE meal per person (ages 3 and up), per night at a select Walt Disney World® Resort quick-service dining location when you buy a non-discounted 5-night/6-day room and theme park ticket package at a select Disney Value Resort hotel. Offer valid for arrivals most nights May 29-Aug. 25, 2018 when they book through Feb.11, 2018.

Booking Window: Jan. 3-Feb. 11, 2018
Travel Window: May 29-Aug. 25, 2018

Tickets valid for one Theme Park per day and must be used within 14 days of first use. First use must occur on or before 12/31/18. Cannot be combined with any other discount or promotion. Offer excludes campsites and Disney’s Art of Animation Resort—The Little Mermaid Standard Rooms. Everyone in the room must be on the same package. Each Quick-Service meal includes one entrée and one nonalcoholic beverage (or, if age 21 or over, one beer, wine or cocktail). Children ages 3-9 must order from the children’s menu, if available.
Walt Disney Travel Company CST# 1022229-50

Memories of a Cold Disney Vacation

One of the vacations we reference most frequently at home was a cold January trip we took this time 8 years ago.  This was the first time either of us had experienced Florida cold.  We mistakenly sat at home in the freezing Midwest and thought 30s and 40s would feel warm in Florida.  We left our heavy winter gear at home and went to the airport in sweatshirts.

cold in walt disney world

Shivering on Backlot Tour

We found out the hard way that the 30s do not feel warm just because you’re in Florida.  In fact, they some how feel colder than the 30s do in winter at home.  We also learned a lesson about high and low temperatures, since the high temp seemed to last for 2 minutes in the afternoon, and the rest of the day lingered in the cold.

Disney plants covered in cold

We’ve been on trips with cold mornings or evening, but this trip was remarkable for its long lasting cold.  Frost on car windows, sensitive plants covered, Christmas decoration removal delayed, strings of Spirit of Aloha dinner shows cancelled, and of course water park closure.

Kidani Village savanna

Kidani Village

We also were fortunate to stay at Kidani Village at Animal Kingdom Villas, so we had a great view for all the extra time at the hotel we spent hiding from the cold.

We talk about this vacation often because what went wrong made it so memorable.  Sometimes it’s when trips don’t go to plan that the best memories are made!

New Spring 2018 Walt Disney World Discount

A new offer is now available for spring 2018 travel to Walt Disney World!  This new offer has both a room and package option.  When  using the package discount, you can get a free one day ticket upgrade when you include a 5-Day Park Hopper or 5-Day Park Hopper Plus.

If you’re thinking of traveling over spring break, now is the time to explore your package options and book your vacation.  Flower & Garden Festival in Epcot will return February 28-May 28, transforming the park into a beautiful, living tapestry.

Springtime in Florida is one of my favorite ways to ease out of winter!  Request your free Walt Disney World quote today!

Wilderness Lodge courtyard flowers

Sun & Fun Offer

When you are planning a sun- and fun-filled visit to Walt Disney World® Resort, staying in the middle of the magic will help you make the most of you vacation – and now is the time to book! With this offer, you can save up to up to 20% on rooms at select Disney Resort hotels.

  • For stays most nights Feb. 18-April 14, 2018. Book through March 7, 2018.
  • For stays most nights April 15-June 10, 2018. Book through April 7, 2018.

Plus, when you upgrade to a room and ticket package that includes a minimum 5-day theme park ticket with the Park Hopper® Option or Park Hopper Plus Option, they can get one more day added to the ticket, FREE!*

The following room types and Disney Resort hotels are excluded:

  • 3-bedroom villas
  • Bay Lake Tower at Disney’s Contemporary Resort
  • Cabins at Copper Creek Villas & Cabins at Disney’s Wilderness Lodge
  • The Villas at Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort & Spa
  • Bungalows at Disney’s Polynesian Villas and Bungalows
  • Disney’s Art of Animation Resort – The Little Mermaid Standard Rooms
  • Disney’s Port Orleans Resort – French Quarter

The number of rooms allocated for this offer is limited. Length-of-stay requirements may apply. Additional per-adult charges may apply if more than two adults per room at Disney Value, Moderate and Deluxe Resorts. Cannot be combined with any other discount or promotion. Advance reservations required. Offer excludes 3-bedroom villas, Cabins at Disney’s Copper Creek Villas & Cabins at Disney’s Wilderness Lodge, Bungalows at Disney’s Polynesian Villas & Bungalows and Disney’s Art of Animation Resort-The Little Mermaid Standard Rooms. 20% savings based on the non-discounted price of the same room for select Disney Deluxe and Deluxe Villa Resorts. Lower savings may be available for other select Disney Resort hotels.

*Tickets and options must be used within 14 days of first use. First use must be by 12/31/18.

Half Deposit Offer on Disney Cruise Line

One of my favorite offers is currently available for 7-Night or longer sailings on Disney Cruise Line – a half deposit!  This offer reduces your initial deposit amount by half, reallocating the other half to the remaining balance due by your final payment due date.  Deposit amounts vary by cruise and stateroom.  This half deposit offer ends February 15, 2018.

Cruise itineraries are currently out through early 2019.  The Magic sails a variety of 7-Night and longer cruises in Europe over summer 2018.  The Wonder spends summers in Alaska.  Both are great family vacation options to getaway during summer break while also seeing new and interesting parts of the world!

Don’t forget, we offer onboard credit for your Disney Cruise!  Request your cruise quote anytime!

castaway cay

The Disney Cruise Line Half Deposit offer is now available for Guests who book a new 7-night or longer sailing between Dec. 21, 2017-Feb. 15, 2018. Guests are only required to pay 50% of the cruise deposit amount to secure the booking and the offer can be applied to 7-night or longer sailings departing June 23, 2018-May 31, 2019. The remaining balance is due at time of final payment.

Important Details:

  • Taxes, fees and port expenses, gratuities and Port Adventures are not included.
  • Not valid on categories with restrictions (IGT, OGT, VGT), suites or Concierge-level staterooms.
  • Valid on all 7-night or longer sailings that do not require final payment at time of booking and take place between June 23, 2018 and May 31, 2019.
  • Rates are in U.S. dollars 
  • This offer cannot be combined with any other offers or discounts.
  • Offer subject to Disney Cruise Line Terms and Conditions.

Travel Insurance Temporarily Unavailable

Beginning December 29, 2017 travel insurance will not be available to add to packages for Walt Disney World, Disneyland, and Aulani.  Previously purchased policies remain in effect.  A new policy will be available sometime in the new year, insurance provider and price to be determined.  This was a sudden announcement from Walt Disney Travel Co., so it may be a few weeks before a new travel insurance option is in place to bundle with your vacation package.

Early 2019 Disney Cruise Line Itineraries

Disney Cruise Line has released itineraries for early 2019! Schedules are out through April-early May 2019.  Summer 2019 schedules will be released in 2018.

The new itineraries open for booking by Platinum Castaway Club members on October 30, 2017.  On October 31, they open to Gold members, then November 1 for Silver Castaway Club.  On Thursday, November 2 the new itineraries open to the public.

Booking early gives you the best stateroom availability and locks in your cruise price.  This can be especially helpful if you need or want connecting staterooms.  We offer onboard credit for most Disney Cruise vacations.  Request your no-obligation cruise quote today!

disney dream pool

The Dream will sail 3-Night and 4-Night Bahamian cruises out of Port Canaveral, Florida.  These cruises include a stop at Disney’s private island, Castaway Cay.  These are great for first time cruisers, adding in conjunction with a Walt Disney World vacation, and for a short getaway to relax and recharge.

The Fantasy continues to sail alternating 7-Night Western Caribbean and 7-Night Eastern Caribbean cruises from Port Canaveral, Florida.  All of these Fantasy cruises include a stop in Castaway Cay. These cruises balance days at sea with ports of call to offer you the best of action and relaxation.

The Magic spends the winter and spring sailing Bahamian and Caribbean cruises out of Miami.  These are nice options if you’ve done Bahamians on the Dream and want something a little different, but still need a short cruise.

The Wonder ends its Galveston season with a relocation cruise from to San Juan on January 9, 2019.  The Wonder spends a few weeks in San Juan sailing 3 Southern Caribbean cruises, all with unique itineraries.

The Wonder then relocates from San Juan to Port Canaveral on February 3, 2019.  The Wonder sails a few short Bahamian cruises out of Port Canaveral before taking an early Westbound Panama Canal relocation cruise to San Diego.

While in San Diego, the Wonder sails a variety of short Baja and longer Mexican Riviera cruises March to early May.

I’m excited to try a Southern Caribbean cruise!  What news in this release has you excited?

Trial Allows Dogs in Rooms at 4 Walt Disney World Hotels

In your news today, Walt Disney World will now allow dogs to stay in 4 select hotels on property.  This trial opportunity is currently available for hotel stays October 15, 2017 to October 15, 2018.  The four hotels included are Art of Animation, Port Orleans Riverside, Yacht Club, and the Cabins at Fort Wilderness.

There is a nightly charge of $50 at the value, moderate and cabin options.  The charge is $75 per night at the deluxe option.  Two dogs per room are permitted.  Rooms will have easy access to green space, which likely means first floor rooms at the hotels.  Rooms with dogs receive Pluto’s Welcome Kit with special items for your furry friends.

Among the requirements for this trial are that dogs must be well behaved, on a lease in public spaces and up to date on vaccinations.  Special door hangers indicating dogs are in the room are required and housekeeping will only occur upon request with the owner of the pets present.

Read below for more information about this four legged friendly trial.

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New 2018 Walt Disney World Discounts

The first offers for 2018 Walt Disney World vacations are now available!  There are two main offers, plus variations on those offers.  See the end of this post for more details.

The best offer is the Play, Stay, Dine offer, which is among the best discounts offered on Walt Disney World packages.  This offer covers January, February, and early March 2018.  This offer applies to packages that include your hotel, tickets, and a dining plan.

The other offer now available is Gift of Magic room discount.  This is a good discount that covers various dates from January through April 2018.

Winter is one of my favorite times to visit Walt Disney World.  The weather can vary a lot, but I love having a sunnier and warmer destination vacation to look forward to when it’s cold and snowy at home!  These discounts cover the 2nd Festival of the Arts in Epcot, plus the beginning of Flower & Garden Festival in Epcot.

If you’re planning a spring break trip to Florida, now is the time to start looking at packages so you can have your pick of more hotel and room options!  Request your free Walt Disney World quote today!

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