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Disneyland Paris advice

(31 Posts)
LilyRose22 Fri 17-Feb-17 12:20:31

I'm looking to take family to Disneyland Paris (me, DH, DD4 and DD2.
I want to avoid school holidays (UK and France).
Plan would be to drive from northern U.K. To London and get Eurostar with our car.

Any tips on dates (June ish?)
I don't want to spend more than £2000 total but would like to stay overnight somewhere close to U.K. Eurostar and then in one of the close hotels at Disney, probably 3 days in the park (is that enough / too long?)
Any recommendations for hotels?
Would I be better booking through a company who sort out Eurostar/ hotel / tickets (any recommendations?) or should I book individually myself?
Thanks in advance

JennyWreny Fri 17-Feb-17 12:35:12

The first time we went (which was the only time we didn't have to go in school holidays) was in June and it's was great timing. Weather was good and the park was quiet.

We have been a few times, and the following has worked well for us -

Monday - Friday - so have plenty of time to do both parks and not feel like we have to rush around, but not including weekends when I think it gets busier with day trippers.

We usually stay in Hotel New York which is near enough to the park to come back during the day for a rest.

If you stay in a Disney hotel you can then get to go in the park early (before it opens) - Extra Magic Hours - So we would get up early (with little DC I guess you would anyway), have early breakfast and then be at park for Extra magic hours. Stay in park until lunchtime then come back - grab baguette from convenience type store at railway station (just outside park) eat lunch by the lake near hotel, have afternoon nap (while park is at it's busiest) then go back in park late afternoon.

We have always found it's cheaper to book hotel/park tickets with Disney and then transport separately. We usually use Quidco which offers good cash back on Disney - looks like it's 4.5% at the moment.

I just did a quick search and 19-23 June for room at Hotel New York for 2 adults and 2 children is £1,200. That includes half board meal plan. So I would have thought it would come within your budget.

JennyWreny Fri 17-Feb-17 12:41:36

and a quick look at those dates on the Eurostar website comes back with £480. If you are staying at a Disney hotel you can use the Disney Express luggage service so you leave your cases at the station and they take them to your hotel for you so you can go straight into the park. Then on your last day you leave your bags with the hotel who transport them to the station for you so you can spend the last day in the park and then go straight to the station for your train (rather than having to go back to hotel to collect bags).

LilyRose22 Fri 17-Feb-17 12:47:05

Thanks for the tips, I think we will be taking the car and then hoping we can park at the hotel (?) so we won't need to worry about luggage.

Floralnomad Fri 17-Feb-17 12:52:15

Do you mean you want to take your car to Disney , because if that's the case you get the eurotunnel at Folkestone and can stay in a premier inn / travelodge type place anywhere south of the M25 in Kent for an early start . Driving to Disney is very easy and parking at the Disney hotels is free , it's way more economical than the Eurostar or flying . We always book the hotel via the Disney website and then book the tunnel independently through their website . For a budget option if you are driving you could look at Davy Crockett ranch , which has a nice pool and is lovely for children . We generally stay at the Disneyland hotel , but I've done many trips to the New York and that's also very pleasant .

SellFridges Fri 17-Feb-17 12:53:43

You can't take the car on Eurostar (that's the passenger service). You can take the car through the EuroTunnel from (I think) Folkestone.

Floralnomad Fri 17-Feb-17 12:55:33

Sorry just to confirm having seen your last post ,if you want to drive to Disney you need to take either a ferry or the channel tunnel not the Eurostar .( Eurostar is passenger only ) . It's a 2.5-3 HR drive on the French side and is very easy .

JennyWreny Fri 17-Feb-17 12:56:40

They have huge car parks at the hotels, so I don't think that would be a problem. I should say that it's a few years since we went, so I'm not 100% sure that what I've said is still current, so definitely check things like extra magic hours etc.

Another tip is that there often seems to be huge queues at the restaurants, so either make sure you are prepared for that or see if you can get a reservation.

Also if your DDs are likely to be interested in meeting the princesses it would probably be worth planning carefully. I understand that there is now a princess pavilion which has v long queues - might be an idea to look into having lunch at the castle which includes visits to your table by the princess - although V expensive I understand. There's a Disney planning website called The Dibb which has lots of this sort of info. It is mainly for the Florida parks, but has a section for DLP too.

LilyRose22 Fri 17-Feb-17 13:09:20

Yes, I want to drive so looks like Folkestone, we've not been to London / south east much so didn't realise Eurostar and eurotunnel were separate!

We were hoping to go through the week to avoid the crowds, I think my daughter will just be happy to see the princesses without having to meet them all (might be kidding myself on that one!)

Is there plenty to do at the hotels in the evenings? Do any have swimming / water park type things?

Shaistaali Fri 17-Feb-17 13:19:41

Hi lilyrose22 I have 3 children and we went by road to Disney land Paris in may 2016 for 4 nights it was such a great adventure kids loved every minute we stayed at 2 different hotels one in Paris and one near Disney land only 15 minutes drive good luck

umizoomi Fri 17-Feb-17 13:22:43

I have done exactly this twice from northern England

The first time we stayed in a travelodge this side and got a morning eurotunnel crossing. As a PP said, it's an easy drive (3 hours ish) to DLP.
Same thing coming back, but an evening train from France so you have a fullish last day.

The second time we drove to Kent, got a eurotunnel to Calais and stayed the night in France. In a town called arras, around 1 hour from Calais on the main A16 route. We then got up, had breakfast and did the remaining two hours to DLP, arriving around 11am.

This worked better IMO as you get over the hour ahead 'dead time' and do the bulk of traveling in 1 day.

We stayed at Davy Crockett both times - static caravans warm and clean. We also paid for meal vouchers do we didn't have to worry about how much cash to take and you also get breakfast that way. You have to drive to the parks each day (about 10 minutes) and parking is free.

As your kids are quite young though, a closer hotel might be better in case you want to go back in the day for a rest - they are a walk/shuttle bus away.

I would think in June for a few nights including a meal plan you would get it for less than £2k if you pick your dates etc

umizoomi Fri 17-Feb-17 13:25:10

I would also suggest more than 3 days personally. We have done 3 nights/4 days and 4 nights/5 days and would say 3 night min. Although you won't do as many rides as your kids are smaller than mine smile

You can also exchange Tesco club card points for Eurotunnel if you shop there

umizoomi Fri 17-Feb-17 13:28:38

Some have pools - Davy Crockett does and the Newport bay certainly.

4 nights/5 days at the Newport bay arriving mon 12th June is just over £1k - that's got 30% off at the moment and a free half board package too! Bargain!!

mouldycheesefan Fri 17-Feb-17 13:29:44

It seems madness to drive from thr northeast to Paris. You won't use t h car when you are there so check flight prices from local airport, easyJet etc may end up being cheaper than the euro tunnel, petrol and accommodation close to the euro tunnel plus you will have less travel time and more time in the park.

Agree book restaurants in advance.
I like thr Disneyland hotel as it's at the gates of the park.

Twistmeandturnme Fri 17-Feb-17 13:36:34

The more expensive hotels have pools etc. have a look on their website.

With a 2yo and a 4yo you say? I'm going to recommend you change your plans a little. Having done DLP six times, the first two by car and subsequently by train, I would go on Eurostar every time rather than driving. North of England: so you're talking about a what, 6 hour drive with toddlers in the car, then an early start to get the chunnel, then 3 hours drive on the wrong side of the road to get to DLP, then check in, unpacking. You'll be shattered and miss most of the day!
Then you'll do the same thing in reverse on your last day: so your 3 days in the park will actually be 1 day and two short part-days....and you will be tired, the kids will be tired and no sleep for you!
Our DLP method: go on Eurostar, and spend the extra supplement to have express check in on the train. The train goes right to Disneyland, you hand in your luggage, and can go straight onto the park while they deliver your cases to your hotel.
Go half board: I see that they are giving this away for free at the moment: it is a great bonus, and there are some lovely restaurants in the park where you can use your tickets for something really special.
Get an early breakfast and get to the parks as soon as you can. Your kids will be up early so make the most of their enthusiasm.
Book meals before you go: decide one day to have a late lunch on the park and a snack at dinner time, or vice versa, but book as the good places do fill up.
We found that when the kids were small (and Granny was old!) a lazy lunch/mini-nap in a decent restaurant (vouchers) was much more conducive to staying up for the parades than grabbing a burger.
Save money on the hotel to spend on experience: even when small mine loved the yellow bendy buses to the less expensive hotels. the year we stayed in the Disneyland Hotel, with characters wandering the halls, they still missed the buses! Use the difference for dinner at the Auberge de Cendrillon and get the photos with the princesses. Use your vouchers for a character brunch if you can, or for the barbecue shack so you can meet Woody (My DH has a man crush on Sheriff Woody!).

With an early start you may find that the kids are shattered quite early and you won't have time to experience the joys of the hotel. Bottle of wine and pack of cards for the evening, ready to start again in the morning.
The Eurostar back is in the early evening, so your last day is full too. The hotel can drop your bags at the station for you.

Janet80 Fri 17-Feb-17 13:37:47

Have you thought about leaving your car in/near London and taking the Eurostar staight into Disney (Marne le vallee).
The Disney hotel La Cheyenne is a lovely western themed hotel and buying park tickets with the hotel works out really quite reasonable.

mouldycheesefan Fri 17-Feb-17 13:39:04

Don't waste time in swimming pools at the hotel you can do that at home, you pay a lot to go to Disneyland Paris spend your time doing that!

PotteringAlong Fri 17-Feb-17 13:41:49

Don't drive from the north east! Fly Edinburgh to Paris with easyJet (bizarrely much cheaper than flying from Newcastle).

You don't need swimming pools in the evening. They'll be knackered. Back from the park and straight to bed.

juneau Fri 17-Feb-17 13:43:03

I agree - I wouldn't bother taking the car unless you were going on to somewhere afterwards that you wanted it for. You don't need a car at Disney for anything - actually it's a liability because of parking charges. Why not fly or take the train? From the northeast you can get train to Kings Cross, walk next door to St Pancras (where Eurostar departs from) and jump on the Disneyland train, which takes you directly to the park. Much quicker and easier than driving and having to spend a night on the way.

Twistmeandturnme Fri 17-Feb-17 14:07:15

On train fares if you do take that route: within the uk your 4 year old would not need a ticket, on Eurostar they would...but if you buy a family and friends railcard and get your 4yo a ticket it works out cheaper than 2 full price adult tickets.

Floralnomad Fri 17-Feb-17 14:19:37

We live in the SE and I've done Eurostar a couple of times but I always prefer to drive , but I don't fly at all and am not keen on trains - especially trains full of other people's children , last time we went by Eurostar someone's child was vomitting a few seats away and that's enough to make me prefer my car !

2014newme Fri 17-Feb-17 14:21:47

Floral would you prefecture car though if you had to drive to Folkestone from the north east,and back again

Floralnomad Fri 17-Feb-17 14:35:23

Probably , I would tie it in with a day in London or sight seeing in the area , then stay overnight close to the tunnel and go early in the morning . That said I don't mind driving , I've done lots if long haul day trips . We've done Disney as a day trip in the past a couple of times .

confuugled1 Fri 17-Feb-17 15:09:20

We first went when dc were 6 and 3, then again 3 years later.

We drove both times - but we turned the journey into more so stopped off half way in france - usually at the Novotel in Reims which is just off the motorway but once at the Holiday Inn Express in Arras. By joining their loyalty clubs and newsletters we were able to choose good times to book and paid half price maximum. The HI had a fab free breakfast buffet and a really spacious big family room but it was a 10 minute walk to the centre to find restaurants and shops.

The Novotel was also nice but if you had the hotel breakfast it added to the cost. It had a tiny pool and there's a shopping centre over the road with a hypermarket so you can easily get food to eat in or take back to the room for a picnic supper or breakfast.

DLP is about an hour's drive from both from memory, maybe a little more. But it meant tgat you could have a gentle start to the day, get to DLP in good time to check in, have a look around, have lunch, have a nap if the dc are still at that age, go back to the patk and have good value from your first day there. Then on your last day do it in reverse - you get a good full day at DLP and then just have an hour or so to drive to a hotel you have already been to so know and feels familiar. Have a relaxing evening then have a gentle day to get back to the uk - you will also have time to stop off at the massive shopping centre and hypermarkets in Calais to stock up on french goodies.

Alternatively if you want to make a bit longer holiday, the European Centre Parcs are much much cheaper than the UK ones and you could use one of the french or belgian ones as a stop offpoint for a few days.

raystone11 Fri 17-Feb-17 15:32:44

Hi I always do it my self its very easy and cheaper. there are lodes of flights from Manchester to Paris for less than £400 return [flybe]. try explorers hotel website put in code rg20 for 20% discount should work out about
£300 for 3 nights B&B. you just need transfers from airport to Disney land plus tickets to get in. hope this helps.

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