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Florida Advice

(18 Posts)
mumsfrazzled Tue 25-Jan-11 14:29:09


I am planning a trip to Florida for oct 2010 and would like some advice from others who have been already. I have 3 DC who will be 8,6 and 1 when we go.

First is it worth extra cost to stay in disney resort hotels or am i better off getting a villa.

There is currently a deal on that you can get 14 day park tickets for price of 7 for disney world. How many days would I need to do disney world. What other parks should i definately do for the boys aged 8 and 6.

Currently I have costed out the trip as follows which is roughly around £4300. Does this appear reasonable.

Flights £2000k appox
Accomodation £1430 Disney port orleans this includes disney quick service dining plan for free.
Disney Tickets 14 day ultimate £862

Let me know if I have missed anything else that i should be thinking off.

cathers Tue 25-Jan-11 16:23:34

We have just booked for sept. I assume you mean oct 2011?
You haven't included,
Travel insurance (good cover)
Esta immigration forms
Car hire? Or transport if you are planning to go out of Disney in the 2 weeks and parking fees
Airport car parking.
Food/ drink. Quick dining gives you two quick meals a day, so will need to factor in breakfast and drinks. Breakfast is expensive in Disney hotel. Be warned!

Our ds are a year younger, but we are doing 6 days in Disney, ( 2 in animal kingdom, 2 magic kingdom and one in each other park) staying in a Disney hotel to get. Extra hours and be on site. Then moving to a villa which is cheaper, and quieter, and will enable us to see more of Florida. E.g cape canaveral. Reckon it's going to cost us £6000 all in, but our flights were more expensive than 2k.

AttilaTheMeerkat Tue 25-Jan-11 16:36:49

How much will you budget for day to day expense like souvenirs?.

Passports for you all must be in order and must not expire whilst you are in FL.

With regards to the ESTA forms, the American authorities now charge US $14 (around £9 currently) for each application made. All of you will need to have the ESTA completed prior to travelling and these last two years.

Five ESTA forms will now cost you £45. They are also mandatory.

BTW do inform the credit card company of your travel plans in advance because if you do not they could well place a "stop" marker on your cards.

Lizzywishes Tue 25-Jan-11 18:52:07

We liked port Orleans French quarter. Best advice I was given was to get the unofficial guide to disneyworld. It has loads of advice on hotels etc and has brilliant touring plans for the parks that mean you avoid queues even on the busiest days. Couldn't believe how well they worked.

mumsfrazzled Wed 26-Jan-11 21:04:35

Thanks very much for your replies, I have now ordered the unofficial guide to disneyworld.

My budget is ever increasing with all the extras.

Hulababy Wed 26-Jan-11 21:10:41

We are going in August this year. We are flying with Thomson and getting a villa through them too = works out cheapest option for us this year. For 4 adults and 1 child that is £4500 for a fortnight. We will have car hire on top. We have found tickets for allt he parks over 14 days - Disney, Universal, Sea World, Busch Gardens and the the water parks for £400 per adult, a bit cheaper for 8y DD. We do parks or waterpark every day and always have, even when DD was 2y. She doesn't like days off!

We already have passports and our ESTAs are in date, You now pay for them but it is about £14 per person inc children.

Parking at the parks is around $12 a day.

We went last in summer 2009, again school holidays. That time it was just the three of us so we went for a Disney hotel - stayed in Animal kingdom which was great. It was a Disney hotel so parking and Disney tickets were included in the price.

mumsfrazzled Wed 26-Jan-11 22:07:53

if you stay in a disney hotel are disney tickets included in the price one travel agent said they were and another said they weren't.

£4500 seems like a great price for august.

Hulababy Wed 26-Jan-11 22:11:46

It was part of our package - hotel, fights, Disney tickets and parking. That was 2009 so packages may have changed.

We are really pleased with this year's price. We have been monitoring costs for a few weeks now and flights have been over £1000 each, without even looking at the rest. So when my dad found the package with Thomson for villa and flights for £4500 we booked that day! Ok, the flight might not be as good as Virgin. but at the end of the day it is just to get us there and back. And the villas are all the same, we just wanted to make sure we were 10 minutes away and no more.

Hulababy Wed 26-Jan-11 22:12:11

We booked it on Sunday :D

sillymummy72 Sun 30-Jan-11 20:46:09

Hi -we go to Florida every year and always stay onsite at WDW. This works well for us as it's only me, DH and DD.
Port Orleans is a lovely resort but as you have 3 DC's for more space it might be worth looking at the family suites in the All Stars Resorts - it might even be cheaper.Port Orleans is a nicer (more grown up)resort but All Stars has really cool theming and kids love it.

It's all down to preference - I know many people who will only do villas because of the extra space but we like on-site because;
1) Disney transportation -the buses, boats and monorails are amazing. DH drives a lot with work and really doesn't want to be driving on holiday.

2) Immersion in the Disney experience - it's pure escapism

3) Disney Dining - and as you are getting it free all the better (not sure what package you've been offered but if it's the quick service dining plan I would recommemnd paying the small charge to upgrade to the standard dining plan this means you can do all the character meals etc.) You can make ADR's (advanced dinner reservations) in advance - some amazing restaurants are Le Cellier at Epcot (amazing food), Crystal Palace in the Magic Kingdom ( winnie the pooh and friends are there!!), Cinderella's Royal Table ( in the Castle with the princesses!) in the Magic Kingdom, 50's Prime Time Cafe in Hollywood Studios and The Hoop De Doo Review at Fort Wilderness is really good fun.

Other good character meals are Chef Mickeys (contemporary resort), Akerhaus in Epcot ( all the princesses) and Tusker house in Animal Kingdom ( Mickey and friends).

There are some really good websites that will help you plan - Disboards and The Dibb.

Have fun -once you go you'll want to keep going back!!!

mumto2andnomore Sun 30-Jan-11 21:32:54

Have a look at complete orlando as they are very competitive and helpful.

We went last year for a once in a lifetime holiday.....we are going back in August

I would recommend upgrading the dining plan so you can have a sit down meal each day, that really made our holiday special.

mumsfrazzled Tue 01-Feb-11 09:50:55

I have spoken to complete orlando who have given me a very competitive price. They have a good deal at the moment for the old key west resort which includes the upgraded dining plan for the same price as the port orleans, has anyone stayed here in a studio room. what was it like ?

stephanie2 Tue 01-Feb-11 10:35:59

we are off to florida in on feb the 14th. (i think im more exc than the kids) tee hee. just a wee bit off advice on car rental. we have found it to be a lot cheaper to rent a car in florida than it is to rent the car seat. our % door car was $295 for the 2 weeks and the car seats where $314 for 2 weeks ( for 2 car seats) so i would sugest you take our own with you if its light enough . enjoy your holiday

mumto2andnomore Tue 01-Feb-11 12:20:22

We are going to OKW in a studio this year.It has 2 double beds, balcony, bathroom and a small kitchenette.Resort looks really nice. Last year we went to Saratoga Springs which is right next door, we had a 1 bed apartment which was lovely but couldnt justify the extra £500 this year.Have you been on the disboards/dibb lots of people on there will have been and can advise you.

mumoverseas Tue 01-Feb-11 17:38:38

stephanie totally agree ref car seats, we always take ours. Friends of ours went a few years ago and were charged so much for the car seat they actually bought one for about a third of the hire cost and then returned the car seat after one day for a refund.
Just be careful about your car hire. Sounds VERY cheap to me so make sure that all the insurances you will need are included.

mumsfrazzled Tue 01-Feb-11 21:52:27

Thanks for the tip on the car seats. I will also check out the disboards and dibb to see what they have to say about OKW.

befuzzled Thu 16-Jun-11 10:45:04

also thinking of going over october half term. where do you order the unofficial guide to disneyworld from? we are also 2 adults, 2 children, 1 infant but the cheapest I have got the flights down to so far is 2700 - how are you getting cheaper? Is it cheaper to do a package do you think?

Jagsy Thu 16-Jun-11 18:26:56

Hi befuzzled, you can order the unofficial guide from amazon, or most libraries have a few copies. I am planning oct half-term 2011 so book is very useful for planning, plenty of good advice. Unless you fly indirect, I dont think you will get the flights down much further as oct is only few months away. Maybe if you check fly-drive prices, you can get your car included for similar price and it becomes a package holiday so covered for insurance etc?

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