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  #21  
Old December 10th, 2015, 06:18 PM
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Originally Posted by ctrover View Post
Disneyworld sounds like a parents nightmare. Why not spend the same amount of money on a cool trip to europe,carribean... or rent a cottage in a faraway place where the whole family has fun. What's the attraction to standing in line,being hot and irritated, spending your hard earned money on commercial crap.If you want roller coasters go to a local amusement park. Please enlighten me.
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  #22  
Old December 10th, 2015, 06:54 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ctrover View Post
Disneyworld sounds like a parents nightmare. Why not spend the same amount of money on a cool trip to europe,carribean... or rent a cottage in a faraway place where the whole family has fun. What's the attraction to standing in line,being hot and irritated, spending your hard earned money on commercial crap.If you want roller coasters go to a local amusement park. Please enlighten me.
I don't know where to begin with this one without sharing my philosophy on parenting. Suffice it to say that the needs/wants of parents don't generally come first. Yes, your proposal sounds great but at the end of the day those end up being a true 'parents nightmare' with small children. While the single me loves the idea of a good trip or a nice quiet cottage... It's a pipe dream. I did this before my last deployment and I had a great time but my wife was bored out of her mind caring for our one kid at the time while I stalked the local rivers for trout.

Kids happen to innately like 'commercial crap'. They are more amused by colorful, well marketed and sometimes obnoxious characters than great scenery or historic architecture. That's just how it is. I hope as they get older a good family vacation will be a road trip or camping excursion. For now, it is not feasible.

Finally, regarding my 'hard earned money'... Airfare pretty much anywhere for a family of five is a fortune in and of itself. In fact, just the airfare down to the Caribbean would surpass the entire amount I have saved for a really nice 4 night Disney vacation. For families, Disney is actually a decent deal. Unless you've got $6-10k saved up for a family vacation then your proposal just isn't even in the cards.
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  #23  
Old December 10th, 2015, 06:55 PM
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We just went to Disney before Thanksgiving. My kids are 7,9,&11. Personally I wouldn't go to Disney with kids that young or with a stroller. Not worth the cash for something they definitely won't remember, unless you're really into it.

Anyway, my mother in law work for the Navy. She gifted us a weeks stay at a really nice condo about 15 minutes from Disney through the Armed Forces Vacation Club. The whole week was $350.

Disney allows backpacks and we took advantage of that. We brought waters and lunch in every day. You can take your backpack on all the rides.

Parking was $20/day but was very easy. There's no waiting in line for an hour. You're in and parked within 10 minutes. Then catch a shuttle and hop the monorail or boat.

FastPass. Choose your rides as soon as you can for as early as you can. The Dwarves Mine Coaster passes go first. Then Space Mtn and Thunder Mtn and Peter Pan. When you burn through your initial passes you can reload 1 at a kiosk, but by that point only the less popular rides will be available.

Catch a parade or a show at the main castle.
Giant cinnamon rolls up past the Dwarves ride.

Definitely get the app. You can get up to date wait times and change FastPasses on it.
30 minute wait time is more like 10 at Disney, they really keep it moving.

If you go to Animal Kingdom definitely hit the Everest coaster, its one of the best in all the parks.

Universal Studios:
It was hardly any more money to get season passes, so we did. Season passes are also park hoppers which lets you get into both parks the same day and take the Hogwarts Train between the two.

They have Express Passes. They have a few different versions and they all cost extra, about $40/day/person.
BUT if you stay at the Loews Hotel across the street your room comes with 2-day unlimited Express Passes for everybody staying there, and you get into part of the park early. Since we had season passes we got a discount room rate of $230. A damn good deal for being able to walk to the park.
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  #24  
Old December 10th, 2015, 07:03 PM
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I'd stay at the Wyndham Bonnet Creek. You can find rentals. Its in essence on disney property and you can get shuttles every where. You can stay in a 2 bedroom for same rate or much cheaper then disney property. Resort is spectacular and super close to everything. In fact its about a mile from Downtown Disney. You will see the EPCOT fireworks every night at 9:00 from your room.
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  #25  
Old December 10th, 2015, 07:23 PM
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It took me 23 years to fly Space A with my family of 5 to Europe. I should've done it earlier. $90 $18 per person) to fly to Germany on a 737, free to fly back on a C-5 Galaxy.

My kids were much older though.
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  #26  
Old December 10th, 2015, 07:36 PM
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Originally Posted by steinhnj View Post
It took me 23 years to fly Space A with my family of 5 to Europe. I should've done it earlier. $90 $18 per person) to fly to Germany on a 737, free to fly back on a C-5 Galaxy. My kids were much older though.
One day we will do space-A! such a great deal if you have the leave available.
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  #27  
Old December 10th, 2015, 07:54 PM
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I took 7 days of leave and went over Spring Break.
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  #28  
Old December 10th, 2015, 08:07 PM
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same here. just got to have the time to standby
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  #29  
Old December 10th, 2015, 08:37 PM
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We stayed in a cabin at the Disney Ft. Wilderness "campground" -- it was really great! You walk to the lake shore, nice little beach, and catch a boat to Disney World front gate. It is reasonably priced compared to the other resorts, AC, small kitchen. Etc... sort of has a cheap feel to it, but we liked it. You're not really there to stay in your hotel room anyway. It's for the kids to get out to the parks.
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  #30  
Old December 10th, 2015, 08:57 PM
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Originally Posted by K2atlanta View Post
We just did Disney over Thanksgiving with my 6 year old boy and we had a great time. We ended staying at the new Four Season hotel which is just off the Disney property. It wasn't cheap, but was comparably priced and cheaper than some of the Disney hotels. The hotel is only a year old, so it's really nice and clean, and they have their own buses running to and from the parks every 30 minutes to an hour depending on time of day and which park. It was the best part of our trip. My wife is not much of an amusement park fan, so we would wake up early hit one of the parks right when they opened, stay until around noon and head back to the hotel for a good lunch and cocktails. Then drop our son off at their free kids camp for the afternoon and we got a little adult time in. Best of both worlds!!
We stayed at the Four Seasons in Oct for our daughter's 2nd Bday and it was great. Multiple kid areas including a splash pad that is the biggest we have ever seen. Two large pools, lazy river, three story slides, golf course, spa. A kid and adult playground without leaving the resort, oh yeah, Disney is 5 min away. It is not as pricey as the Disney resorts typically but still more expensive than other options. The resort restaurants are great and the steak house is incredible. Staying here and getting the fast passes at magic kingdom made the trip.

One tip, get the Disney magic kingdom app for your phone and look to see which rides get busy at different times of the day. Then consider the rides that are good for your kids age. We didn't need to worry about space mountain or some of the other bigger rides so we focused on the rides a 2 yr old can do. It made the day so much easier, hit all the rides in about three hrs and then we were able to take our time to hit shows until the little one crashed. Just my two cents.
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  #31  
Old December 10th, 2015, 08:57 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RBBailey View Post
We stayed in a cabin at the Disney Ft. Wilderness "campground" -- it was really great! You walk to the lake shore, nice little beach, and catch a boat to Disney World front gate. It is reasonably priced compared to the other resorts, AC, small kitchen. Etc... sort of has a cheap feel to it, but we liked it. You're not really there to stay in your hotel room anyway. It's for the kids to get out to the parks.
we did that once. it was a good time. get your car collective camping and Disney experience all in one vacation. winning!
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  #32  
Old December 10th, 2015, 09:19 PM
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We stayed in a Disney Resort, think it was the All Sports and then Hard Rock Hotel for Universal. We had so much fun! Definitely stay on site and take advantage of all the free shuttles from park to park and the "Magic Hours" ..meaning if you stay in one of their resorts you get to enter the park(s) early and stay late, huge bonus if you want to ride a particular ride a few times... oh and if you buy stuff instead of having to carry it around with you all day, you tell the cashier which hotel and they send it over there for you. That was awesome in itself
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  #33  
Old December 11th, 2015, 01:57 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SMac View Post
Shades of Green is an Armed Forces Recreation Center located on Disney property. Short resort shuttle to the Rail, all inclusive stay, discounted Disney tix....Highly recommended!
This if you are active duty, retired or going with someone retired/active duty. Shades of Green is just across the street from Polynesian and is on the Disney bus route. At least half the price of the Disney hotels. Not themed like the hotels, but you get all the other advantages with regards to distance. You can purchase a meal plan, but we just purchased the buffet breakfast. Stayed there twice so far with my folks (dad is retiree) and both times were great (kids were 4/5 and 5/6). Clean, large rooms and the price is unbeatable. Definitely look it up if you are eligible.
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