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To not go to Disney World when we go to Florida?

(83 Posts)
SarahFx Mon 02-Sep-13 21:40:56

We are going to Florida for the first time next month with son who is 5. He's not a big traditional Disney fan but does like Monsters Inc, superheroes etc.

I'll make it clear this isn't my type of holiday, I prefer a beach holiday and I'm not majorly looking forward to this holiday but its been paid for by my FIL as it's his wish to send DS to Florida.

All has been paid for and we have tickets for Legoland, Seaworld & Aquatica but I just don't want to shell out the £900 for Disney tickets and was thinking we could just visit a big Disney shop and take some photos.

Those who have been, would we really be missing out?

Taz1212 Mon 02-Sep-13 22:06:33

Hulababy has posted the link to undercover tourist. You can buy a one day ticket from them. Or, the Halloween party is $62 (plus tax) per adult and a bit less for kids which will give you entry from 4:00 on the party nights. Either option is nowhere near £900!

noisytoys Mon 02-Sep-13 22:07:49

As someone who took a 4 year old to WDW and saw a look on her face I have never seen before or since I have to say YABU. You may not enjoy Disney world. I would be majorly surprised if your DS didn't enjoy it.

holidaybug Mon 02-Sep-13 22:08:45

The Disney Halloween party is great if you have been before to Disney. You will get on loads of the rides without a queue BUT many of the side shows and attractions will have closed by the time you are allowed in (at about 4pm). It was great for us as we'd been before to the Magic Kingdom but I wouldn't recommend for a first timer.

littlewhitebag Mon 02-Sep-13 22:09:17

AnneEyhtMeyer You are probably right about Epcot. I think i just had a bad experience. I went when pregnant and with a child of 4. We were too hot and i hated it and had to leave after a few hours. The other parks seemed more shaded and child friendly to me.

Taz1212 Mon 02-Sep-13 22:09:32

Oh, and the Halloween parties say they start at 7:00 but that's really the time they kick out non-ticket holders and start the party. If you have a Halloween party ticket they will let you in the park from 4:00.

lurkedtoolong Mon 02-Sep-13 22:09:42

YABU to go to Seaworld and teach your son that it's ok to keep dolphins and whales in captivity for entertainment. Watch The Cove or Blackfish before you go.

VegasIsBest Mon 02-Sep-13 22:10:50

Disney is FAB. Love it. So many different things to do. Why would you not go?? What a shame.

Hemlet Mon 02-Sep-13 22:11:12

I've been to Disney land many times and it is wonderful.The mountain rides (space, slash and thunder) are wicked. A great party of my childhood.

But we would always do 2 weeks in Orlando, one doing the Disney parks and the other in Clearwater which was also really nice and much more mellow but still plenty to do, like look for sand dollars on the beaches and there's a water park there too although I don't remember the name.

PurpleGirly Mon 02-Sep-13 22:12:02

YABU and really should take him. My DS was 5, we did Disney, Animal Kingdom and MGM. My son just loved it and still talks about it now.

Alisvolatpropiis Mon 02-Sep-13 22:12:20

Your son will love it, big Disney Fan or not.

There is plenty to do there other than the parks. I've been to Florida a fair few times and love the place. If you'd like some advice feel free to message me smile

Hulababy Mon 02-Sep-13 22:13:45

Magic kingdom - the "magic", its all about what it looks like and how it feels. Rides in 4 different lands (see site), shows, parades, night time show and parade and the fireworks, lots of characters...

Animal Kingdom - safari, parade, zoo type areas in Africa and Asia, Lion King show and Finding Nemo show, dinosaur play area, more characters ....

Epcot - World showcase (DD has always liked this even from being little) to look around with gentle rides and a Spy GPS type game to do as you go round; have a real talk with Crush, aquarium, Figment, a longer ride involving dinosaurs again, the Test Drive ride, DD likes the ride int he big ball too, good light and water show at night

Hollywood Studios - Toy Story Mania, Beauty and the Beast show, Muppets 3D, car/bike stunt show, lots of shows here too, Star Wars and chance to do Jedi training, some bigger rides too, another parade...

Also 2 water parks - Blizzard Beach and Typhoon Lagoon. We tend to go to the latter as DD loves the wave pool.

Alisvolatpropiis Mon 02-Sep-13 22:14:05


I love Clearwater! It had changed a bit when I went last year though, is definitely being done up to look more glossy rather than charming. And I went in the middle of Spring Break - never again!

rallytog1 Mon 02-Sep-13 22:14:19

Are you actually going to Orlando? There's a lot more to Florida than just Orlando - the Gulf Coast (great beaches), Cape Canaveral (where they launch the shuttles from), The Everglades, Busch Gardens and tons more. I had several family holidays in Florida as a child that didn't include Disney.

Having said that, if it's your first and possibly only visit then it would be a real shame not to go to Disney. I have some very fond childhood memories of time spent there. You don't just have to go to the Magic Kingdom - there's Epcot, MGM Studios and loads more. I'm pretty sure you could just rock up at the gates and pay a heck of a lot less for a day ticket than you're quoting.

firesideskirt Mon 02-Sep-13 22:16:08

Yes, you'll be missing out.
Also I'd save your money on Seaworld - even if it doesn't trouble you ethically, it is still a pretty average day out.

Ilovefluffysheep Mon 02-Sep-13 22:17:24

It might not be your thing, but I can guarantee your son would love it and remember it for ever. I went to Disney for the first time when I was 15, and still remember it now.

GingerPCatt Mon 02-Sep-13 22:18:09

You can do bits of Disney without going into the parks. There's downtown Disney which is mainly shops but has a very Disney feel. I cant remember if tgey have the characters walking around. Go to rainforest cafe buy your DS a toy, job done fraction of the price. Universal has something similar but I can't think if the name. Or you could book a character meal at one of the hotels if you think DS would like to meet Mickey or whoever. I grew up near Orlando and my dad refused to pay the ridiculous price for tickets but there are ways to experience Disney a bit.
Oh and if your DS likes animals check out gatorland.

theoriginalandbestrookie Mon 02-Sep-13 22:19:54


I agree that the 14 day passes are expensive and tbh only cost effective if you are planning to go to most of the parks so don't get the 14 day tickets, but do one day at the Magic Kingdom your DS will love it even if you won't.

Or if you can't bring yourself to do that then take your DSto a Disney character meal, Chef Mickeys is great at breakfast, you have to book in advance but DS age 7 absolutely loved the meal and remembers it.

We took DS to Disney and one of the reasons is when I was a child we went to Florida because my GPs lived there, I asked my father if we were going to Disney and I to this day think he said yes. We didn't go. As an adult I believe that was selfish of them, not unexpected though as theme parks are definitely not their thing.

Don't leave your child to wonder why you went to Florida and didn't bother taking him to Disney.

Lweji Mon 02-Sep-13 22:20:19

YANBU in not going to Disneyworld.

YABVVVVVU not to go to the Kennedy Space Centre. grin

More seriously, I wouldn't want to go anywhere Disney parks, unless DS specifically pestered me to go.

Happypiglet Mon 02-Sep-13 22:20:44

Also October is an excellent time to go to Disney. The queues aren't too bad all the parks but especially MK look beautiful decked out for Halloween.
Check which water parks are open tho typhoon lagoon was shut last October when we went.
The 14 day ticket is really flexible so you can park hop...change your mind on which days to go..or which parks.
I bet you will kick your selves if you buy a day pass as you will want to go again and realise how expensive that is to do adhoc once you are there....

SarahFx Mon 02-Sep-13 22:22:54

Yes we are going to Orlando, staying on International Drive.

I'm glad I posted this as I didn't realise half the stuff on offer at Disney and we will get a two or three day ticket so we can at least see some of it. I think there's a concierge in the hotel who can sort this.

Sorry if I seemed snobby or ungrateful, I'm really not, I just can't picture what it's going to be like and it's a bit out of our comfort zone. I need to get myself excited for it though!

pointythings Mon 02-Sep-13 22:23:56

We've just come back from 2 weeks staying in Disney - we got 14 day passes for the 4 of us for £1000 and believe me we made the most of them. The DDs are 10 and 12 and they loved it - the fireworks at Epcot and Magic Kingdom are amazing, and the water parks are definitely worth a visit - we spent about a third of our time there.

By comparison Universal was a bit of a letdown, huge lines for everything and their fast pass system was a big rip-off at $56 on top of normal ticket price of $122 per person.

YABU not to go to Disney at all.

CheshireDing Mon 02-Sep-13 22:24:26

I would rather boil my own head than go to Disney (or any similar theme park) grin.

DH and I have been to Florida a few times and I have told him when PFB is old enough they can go to the theme parks together and I will stay down in the quays/miami - oh the luxury of a few quiet days with lovely clear water and wine. DH is cool with that and I would only end up waiting for them on each ride and holding the bags !

To me it seems a bit mad to take a 5 year old, aren't they a bit young/not tall enough for the rides? <disclaimer I have no experience yet of 5 year olds >

SarahFx Mon 02-Sep-13 22:25:58

We booked Seaworld tickets without really knowing what it was as it's right next to our hotel. I didn't really think of the ethics of it at the time.

alemci Mon 02-Sep-13 22:26:05

we went to st petes beach and Naples this year and Busch gardens which was Reasonable. I hate Orlando and we have done it and Disney a few times. never gone every day to parks

ketchupontoast Mon 02-Sep-13 22:26:22

There are many other things in Florida which your DS will enjoy which do not cost the earth, things that are often overlooked about this beautiful part of the whorl in favour of the all singing n dancing resorts. You will only miss out if it is your kind of thing, otherwise you will miss nothing!

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