Friday, March 12, 2010


Don't go in blind.  
It can be overwhelming.   There is so much to planning a trip to WDW and you might miss out on a lot if you don't invest a little time along with your money.    Ensure you get a good return on your investment!   A little research and planning go a long way at WDW.   So many people go on this 'trip of a lifetime', after spending years and years saving up, only to get there and realize they can't get a table in a sit down restaurant, because it is free dining time and unless you have a reservation, you are stuck with fast food.    Or they go at an extremely busy time and wonder why the lines or so long?  Or get upset that the line for Toy Story Mania always seems to be 90 minutes or longer and they won't get to ride it now. 

These problems never have to happen.   Just spend a few hours researching online or buy one of the many available Walt Disney World planning books- my favorite is the "Unofficial Guide".   As a kid, we loved reading the classic Birnbaum's as well.     Doesn't matter which one, just get one or at least look up some information online.   My favorite sites for info include and their forums    This site offers so much info, park hours, best/worst times recommendations, park maps, restaurants, specials, parade times and the forums are a WEALTH of info from other park goers like you- with objective restaurant reviews, tips for avoiding long lines, secrets, photos and more.  Heck, there is even a "food porn" thread where you can look at photos of all the different food/plates or meals offered throughout Walt Disney World.  So looking at what you might want to eat is going a little too far for some, but not for all.

Another great one is   Deb Wills does a great job with detailed menus of all the restaurants (can you tell we like to eat at disney?) and tons of other great info too.   There are even sites to help you with an itinerary (based on your family- adults only, kids etc.) to make the most of your time with sites like TourGuideMike (fee applies).  

I can't tell you the number of friends that have been grateful that they did a little planning- just knowing to make ADRs (advanced dining reservations) at 180 days out (breakfast with Cinderella books up FAST!) or knowing to be at the park at rope drop (opening) to ride the popular rides with little wait.    Heck, just seeing a map before you go helps too.   So you are probably investing thousands of dollars in your vacation at Disney (I know it ain't cheap!), invest a little time too and you'll be glad you did. 

Without a little research, we would have missed the Grey Goose slushie while drinking around the world in epcot.

or missed the Cool Dude hair treatment for only $10!

  • Sherman Brothers Get Window on Main Street at Disneyland- I promise you've heard their music.  Richard and Robert Sherman have finally received the honor of a window on Main St.   Many of Walt's key team members and famous disney executives and cast members have their names etched on the glass of these windows.    This is the highest honor a cast member can receive.   The Sherman Brothers window reads "Two Brothers Tunemakers"-    They created many of the songs you know and love from popular attractions like the Tiki Room, Carousel of PRogress (It's a great big beautiful tomorrow!), It's a small world (Ok, so maybe we can take or leave that one?), as well as songs from movies like Mary Poppins and Winnie the Pooh.  
  • D23 Expo 2011 announced- D23 has announced they will hold their expo every other year.  Next one scheduled for August 2011 in Disneyland.  
  • TRON takes over the monorail............The WDW monorails will feature a unique overlay to promote the upcoming release of the new TRON movie set for release in December.   LINK to TRON
  • Princess Half Marathon a Success- the 2nd Princess Marathon was a huge success at WDW with over 13,000 runners, many decked out in 'princess' wear or costumes.  Nothing like running through the empty streets of Disney World at 6am in your tiara and gown! Disney offers a variety of races throughout the year Disney Endurance Series

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