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Disneyland Florida - best deals for family tickets?

13 replies

mears · 09/05/2002 08:42

Anyone got experience of going to Orlando theme parks - is it best to buy tickets in UK before going or should you wait till you get there?

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helenmh · 09/05/2002 13:30

We went to orlando last year and ending up buying a 7 day pass for disney as it included entry into the waterparks. We bought ours from the disney store in england. At that time it was a good rate. We bought other tickets eg sea world from a travel agent called transolar in wallasey, merseyside. Sorry I dont have their number now.Work out a rough plan of what you want to do as it is easy to end up buying more tickets than you need. I would highly recommend a website www.wdwinfo.com. There is a trip planning forum for uk visitors. Also simon veness book "Brits Guide to Orlando". Its a brilliant place . Enjoy

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leese · 11/05/2002 17:09

How lucky Mears! We went (pre dd a few years ago) - best holiday ever! helenmc is so right when she mentions a plan - know it sounds regimented, but if you don't, you'll get to the end of your hol and realise there is still so much to do!
We got our tickets when we were over there - don't really think there is that much in it. We got some of ours from our Virgin Hols Rep, as it worked out a bit cheaper. We were in Orlando for a week before going down to the Keys, so it was hectic! We visited Disney MGM Studios, Universal Studios, Universal Islands of Adventure, Epcot and Magic Kingdom. Of these, we found Epcot to be least enjoyable (tho' still great!), as it just feels a bit dated in parts - however, must stress we were there as a couple, and it's much more an 'educational' sort of place, brill for kids - the different themed 'lands' set around the Lake were amazing. Disney MGM was magic - fantastic rides, as was Magic Kingdom - there really is something magical about Disney Parks that Universal don't quite manage to replicate. Saying that, Universal studios was also brilliant, and Islands of Adventure (newest theme park) is truly unbelievable - leave it til later in your stay, as nothing else will quite match up to those rides!
We didn't go to a water park as dh doesn't swim, and would not have particularly enjoyed it, but they looked great. We saved a day and went to Kennedy Space centre - definitely worth a trip, especially with older children.
To save time on rides, you can register at automated machines within all parks, which gives you a 'ride time', so you avoid queues. This said, they even make queueing fun in Disney parks! Also try to catch an evening show at the Parks. We went to the film stunt show at Universal, fireworks at Epcot, and a 'Fantasia' show involving lots of water and lights at MGM - truly breathtaking. In somewhere like Epcot, it's nice to have a meal at the end of the day in one of the 'themed' restaurants surrounding the lake ie, eat at an English Pub (tho' quite why we'd want to in the US is beyond me!), Japanese, Chinese etc etc. We went to the Morrocan Restaurant as had been recommended, and it was very good, but we had to ring ahead to book it, as they get booked up. Also good in the evening is 'Universal City Walk', which is the strip between Universal studios and Islands Of Adventure - lots of cafes, bars, restaurants, shows etc, centred around a massive IMAX cinema, showing all the very latest releases (the stuff the UK can expect to see around Christmas 2003!) - worth seeing a film here for the cinematic experience, AND the boast you'll be able to make to your friends......'Spiderman? Oh yes, we saw that AGES ago!!...' Downtown Disney is also great at night, along by the harbour. More shops, restaurants, general nighlife and FUN.

You'll have a great time!

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starmoon · 13/05/2002 13:02

Hi Mears.
We are going to Orlando for the 4th time on 25 June - cant wait!! Keith Prowse are doing a great
deal on the 10 day world hopper pass usually costs about £260 but they are selling it for £199.
A 10 day pass is alot for a two week stay if you want to visit other parks (not disney) but for the price its excellent so would allow you to maybe go into the park in the evening. Also, Keith Prowse are selling a pass for Seaworld & Bush Gardens valid for 21 days i think for 53Pnds which is te child price. Both of these offers need tix to be booked before 31/05. I know Lunn Poly have the same deal aswell. The Brits Guide to
Orlando is excellent we used it last time we went and used the planner in the back of the book, which is a great idea as you need to plan in advance what you want to do/see. What date are you going?

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Rhiannon · 13/05/2002 14:53

mears, have you been b4? If not and you have a young family just do WDW, Animal Kingdom and Sea World. Animal Kingdom is brilliant, don't miss The Lion King Show, Kali River Rapids (very wet and you can do a baby swap - more than once if you're clever) and the Jungle Safari.

Don't go to Universal Studios, Epcot or MGM as they are for older families. We wasted our tickets at Universal in Feb as DS was too scared to go on any of the rides!

Definitely go to the Disney Marketplace (Downtown Disney). It's free to get in but it's mostly shops. There are fountains for the kids to run in a merry go round and a mini train ride (both reasonably priced). We had an expensive and rather dark and gloomy lunch in The Rainforest Cafe. R

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IDismyname · 13/05/2002 19:19

What age do you think ds ought to be before we decide it's a viable option?
Wonder if a long w/e in Paris would be a good tester before hand.
Would love your opinions...

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Rhiannon · 13/05/2002 21:30

We took our DS at 18 months, he loved it. Obviously some of the rides were not suitable but WDW is the best place for rides for all ages. DD first went at 5 months old!

Oh forgot to mention It's A Bugs Life show at Animal Kingdom, it's great.

Avoid July/August/September if you can due to the humidity. The best time of the year to go (when it's not too hot) is Easter but obviously the parks are incredibly busy. R

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mears · 13/05/2002 22:45

Hi starmoon and rhiannon,

We are going in October and the kids will be 15,13,12 and 8. I think they will have a great time. My dh and I plus youngest went when she was 8 months old. We had actually won a weeks holiday and we begged to take her because I was still breastfeeding. We felt really guilty about the boys so we didn't visit the Magic Kingdom.
Can't wait to get there.

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starmoon · 14/05/2002 13:24

Mears & Rhiannon,
We are going to buy the 10 day World Hopper Pass as its such a good deal. We discussed it last night and said we may not bother with Universal Parks this year, def will go to Seaworld though as Phoebe will love it, she was only 11 months last time. Thanks for the tip re Downtown Disney
Rhiannon will def visit as we have never been there before. So excited!! Mears Oct will soon come around, we have always been in Sept, this is
going to be our first visit in June. My mother in law is coming with us - she is a great help. Enables us to go on the bigger rides.

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robinw · 19/01/2003 06:25

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Batters · 11/08/2003 15:11

This reply has been deleted

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

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triplets · 16/08/2003 20:57

Hi all,
We are seriously thinking of braving Disney with our trio next year. They will be six, so probably will take them out of school and go for three weeks, maybe the May half-term onwards. Can`t make up our mind whether to go to California or Florida, we have been to the west coast three times and love it. Would love some recommendations on accomodation, we want to do it nicely without breaking the bank, which looking at the on site hotels we would be! At the moment we are leaning more toward Florida.

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SoupDragon · 17/08/2003 08:43

Florida - it's a shorter flight!

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leese · 19/08/2003 18:03

triplets - having been to California and Florida disney, would definitely go for Florida every time. Not much in the way of parks for the kids in California, barr Disneyland, and Anaheim wasn't the nicest area.
Florida on the other hand seemed more child friendly all round. Lots of other parks too for them (Animal Kingdom, SeaWorld etc). We are heading there again in November (first time with children in tow tho'!). We've hired a villa, as we are going with another two families, so this has worked out very cost effective for us. Bear in mind tho', if you do book an on site Disney hotel, they do include entrance to the Disney theme parks (obviously not Universal parks), so this is worth taking into account when sorting out the cost. If you were planning to visit Disney parks with some frequency, the money will soon run out if you are paying daily for this, or buying Hopper passes. Cerainly if you are going for three weeks, this may prove expensive in a Disney hotel (gulp!)
I'd recommend a villa near all the attractions - you quite often get a good rate negotiated for three weeks rather than two. You'd then have your own private pool too. Book ahead tho' Triplets, as they get full very quickly around school hols time. You'd need to book now for Easter/May holiday time. I got all my villa info from a magazine sold in WHSmith and other newsagents - think it was called Holiday Villa or something like that. E-mailed loads for info, then pored over them re: location, pool size, room layout etc.

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