Day 4 started out with a morning in Hollywood Studios. Fearing a re-imagineering of the Great Movie Ride, it was a high priority for this trip. “Lasts” have become a common theme for our recent trips, but thankfully “firsts” have started to fill in some of those gaps.
We also saw Voyage of the Little Mermaid and ate lunch at Backlot Express. Voyage of the Little Mermaid was not as fun for our 2 year old as I thought it would be thanks to the mist during the show. I can’t blame him, I don’t enjoy being soaked in a theater unless it’s 90 degrees outside.
Rizzo’s soft opened during our trip
Our last day was easy and relaxed. We had no park tickets which is a new rule we’ve implemented to prevent the crazy last days we usually have. We’ve considering doing this for years, but having a baby to tote really pushed us to implement the rule.
We called Bell Services to our room at 10:13 and were done with Resort Airline Check-In by 10:36. That’s pretty good time since Bay Lake Tower does not have Bell Services and they come from the Contemporary. We also stowed our carry-on bags with Bell Services to free up our hands.
Bay Lake Tower beach. I want 4 Imagineers to paint this tree.
You might be surprised by the amount of physical mail you will receive after you start planning your Walt Disney World vacation. This can be especially important to know if planning a surprise trip. If you have a small mailbox or cannot receive packages directly, you may make alternate plans for your “Mickey mail” delivery.
The items included in this post are accurate as of a November 2015 trip. The design of mailings may change.
1) Welcome Booklet
Welcome Booklet envelope
You receive your first piece of mail a few weeks after you link your reservation in My Disney Experience. When you book through a travel agent you must link your reservation manually using your reservation number. If you don’t link your reservation immediately after booking, you won’t receive this packet until after you’ve linked properly.
Day 4 of our January 2016 trip started in Animal Kingdom. We had an easy drive of less than 15 minutes and were in one of the first few rows of parking. It took about 20 minutes from parking to entering the Kilimanjaro Safari Fastpass line. We had an excellent crisp early morning safari with lots of animal sightings.
They stood so still they looked fake peeking above the bushes
Up next I rode Expedition Everest by myself with a Fastpass and then again as a single rider. Since I’m the only one who rides this in our group and it has a single rider line, the Fastpass was not necessary. Next we child swapped Dinosaur with Fastpasses.
Day 2 of our January 2016 trip started like 95% of our vacation days do – late. It was my resolution for this trip that we would be at the parks as close to park opening as possible. We have a night owl baby, which means we have to wake him up to accomplish this. After already running late, halfway to the monorail platform I realized I forgot a key part of the baby’s costume and had to run back to the room. Ok, I speed walked after about 5 seconds of running. Running is a poor choice for me overall, especially so when the overnight low was 31.
Once on the monorail, it was only a 30 minute journey from leaving the Grand Floridian to arriving at Epcot. I meandered around Mission Space and Innoventions West while the other adults rode Test Track with a Fastpass. I bought a Starbucks mug at Fountain View to add to the Magic Kingdom and Hollywood Studios mugs we have already. I got in line for Baymax, but had to leave the line before meeting him.
Our January Walt Disney World trip is one of those you start planning a few years in advance and have a lot to look forward to. It was a long and winding route to end up at the trip we’re taking, but all things happen for a reason.
I’m going to attempt a live trip report for the first time. [This is already live-ish!] I hope to share some trip planning tidbits that don’t land in their own blog post with a few photos along the way. I apologize for typos, I have a new laptop and am not used to this keyboard.
This trip had the best start to any trip we have taken in the last 10 years. I finally learned a packing secret that is so obvious I don’t know why I’ve never done it before. I’ve always had a large selection of travel size toiletries which helps with luggage weight and space. After our last trip, I refilled all the refillable bottles and replaced anything that ran out. Instead of putting these away, I kept them individually sealed in a ziploc (serious lifesaver for air travel leaks!) and in my suitcase. This cut my packing time in half. From now on, my suitcase will be half packed and ready for our next adventure!