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Wednesday, April 22, 2015


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This is super helpful. We're going next Feb with our kids who will be 9 and almost 6. I've been to Dinsey a few times but never as the one planning (and paying for) the full trip. We went with my entire family when my oldest was 10 months old. It was ...something. We only did 3 day passes while everyone else did 5 so I get the "take it easy" idea. I will say that we went to the first serving of breakfast in the castle (at like 8:30am) and it was GREAT. I'm sad you had a bad experience there because I'm not a disney person and I really loved that dining experience. On the last trip my favorites were animal kingdom and Epcot - much more chill and fewer sobbing kids but this is was before apps and planning sites. I'm actually scared to go this time because I feel like if we don't plan it al exaxtly right we'll miss out. That said, we go to a huge amusement park a few times each year so 30 min lines are something the kids are used to. We're staying off property in a 2 bedroom condo at a resort with like 5 pools so I expect we may have lot of pool time.


So I love Disney...that is my caveat. And I start to leave a really long comment about how you could have done this and this and this and this would have been better and than I stopped.

I'm sorry you had a sucky vacation. Sucky vacations are miserable.


I had to break it up over two days but I read this entire thing with rapt attention. Thank you for sharing so much information - the good and the bad. I'm sorry you had a crappy vacation.

Our kids are 3, 6 and 9 and just reading about the crowds gives me nervous tummy. Despite spousal pressure, I really think I want to wait to go to Disney, if we ever even go.

My kids, at this age, consider any place with a big pool a vacation. I consider any block of time where I don't have to clean or cook a vacation so for our vacation this summer, I found a nice apartment-style hotel near the beach in North Carolina with a big pool and walking distance to a town center with a movie theatre and tons of fast-casual places to eat with kids. It's not Disney but seems more our pace. This will just have to do for now.


Guuuuurl. Thank you for this. I've been feeling conflicted about Disney & how I am actually DREADING the day we decide to make the trip with the kids. I think I am a lot like you (& so is my husband)- low tolerance for hassle & crowds. I want a vacation to feel like a VACATION. & even though taking 3 kids to the beach for a week isn't the most relaxing thing ever, it is MUCH more laid back than Disney sounds. I I feel guilty for not wanting to do it, Because it seems like a childhood milestone that I'd be depriving my kids of or something. But it all sounds so EXHAUSTING & overwhelming. I may just keep delaying it (Zach is still very much a TODDLER so no way would we be doing it anytime soon!) & they'll be too old to care eventually ;) ha

Karen Mcgunagle

We did Magic Kingdom/Hollywood Studios and a 4-day Disney cruise. Boys were 3 and 6 at the time. My kids preferred the Disney cruise by far.

Disney cruises are expensive and you need to like cruises to enjoy a Disney cruise. Benefits of Disney cruise - you can bring your own alcohol on board. This comes in handy and saves money when you are getting the children ready for dinner.

Disney day care = awesome! Once you get over the guilt of sending your kids to camp, you have free time with your spouse. They even escort kids off to camp at the end of dinner so you can enjoy dessert at your leisure. There is even camp on Disney's private island. The 6 year old loved Disney camp and we had to drag him out on occasion.

Dinner is fast for the kids. They learn what your kids drink and like and have drinks and appetizer plates to your kids quickly. The waiters are entertaining and awesome.

We are booked for our next Disney cruise in August - seven nights, no Disney parks this time.


I just did Florida with my 6 year old. We did Magic Kingdom and Universal Studios and stayed at an amazing (non-Disney) hotel. He had a great time at everything except Magic Kingdom. It was too much: too crowded, too frustrating, too many lines. He was DONE by noon whereas he had to be dragged out of Universal at 7pm. Universal was also much easier to do as a solo parent thanks to the child swap areas where you could leave your child in a room briefly so you could go on a scary ride without them. Loved that.
We did Disney during spring break week. NEVER AGAIN.


I'm late to this post, but it's full of useful information. Thanks for sharing all sides of the story!

The last Parents magazine had a whole section on the craziness of planning for DW. I handed it to my husband to read, then recounted your tweets, and said, "I don't know if we can do this." I SO WANT TO, but I'm just like you: low hassle, hate crowds, default parent. If I brought my toddler right now, I too would miss out on everything because I'd have to be at the resort with her. I get that!

So, this is all something to think about at least! We won't go for at least 4 more years - when they're 9 and 6 or something - but who knows how much crazier it will be then!

I wish you a much better vacation next time. And I hope that waiter gets what's coming to him!

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