Do you "plan" everything out, or wing it?

Login to post comments
35 posts / 0 new
Eddie G.'s picture
Offline
Joined: 03/28/2013
Posts: 166
Do you "plan" everything out, or wing it?

Just curious to know how everyone looks/plans their Disney holiday. Do you plan (or attempt) to plan everything out, or wing a lot of it? I see some that try to have this specific timeline and stick to that. To me, I'm on holiday and the only thing we plan out is our ADR's really. Everything else, we pretty much just go with the flow.

Which ever bus comes to the hotel first, we usually just head to that park if we are not heading to an ADR. I don't want to feel I "have" to be at a rope drop. Or run around trying to fit everything into a certain plan...That to me is counter productive of why we go on holidays to begin with.

I am not knocking anyone who likes to do these things on a schedule or timeline. That's great for you and yours. So don't take it the wrong way please wink I was just curious on how you do things when you visit the World.

We like to ride certain attractions over, and over, and over, and over again while we are there. It's not uncommon for us to ride Mission Space four or five times in a row before moving on to another ride. Yeah, I know there is a lot to do and see. But that's what we like to do. It's one of our favourite rides at Disney World mickey So there really is no plan of action for us when we visit. Aside for aforementioned ADR plans.

When we do have ADR's, we do tend to head to that park for that day or evening as a plan. It can take some time to getting around the World. Other than that. We just roll with the flow and visit whatever park we feel like that moment.

__________________

~Eddie G.
Fla. Res. AP Holder Since 1989
404 Days at Disney World & Counting

[url='http://www.mickeypath.com/']

[/url]

Kristen K.'s picture
Offline
Joined: 09/01/2011
Posts: 22481

I make a lose plan. I know which park I want to be at on which day of vacation, that is usually dictated by where my ADRs are because I don't usually buy Parkhoppers. I also usually have one or two attractions that I want to hit, or a short mental list of photographs that I want to be sure to take at some time during the day, that's it though. I don't follow a specific timeline or map out the order of the attractions that we will hit ahead of time.

MrHub's picture
Offline
Joined: 10/29/2009
Posts: 9429

Eddie we do about the same thing. We plan our ADR's so we know where we are going to eat, and the rest, we just go with the flow. This trip is really laid back other then the ADR's we booked a wishes cruise and the dessert party, that's it.

We are gonna park it till it gets to hot, go back to the resort, (get my speedo on!) and pool time it is!. Maybe do some resort hopping here and there. We are not "Commando type" Disney people, but that's our way. Everyone does it differently.

Eddie G.'s picture
Offline
Joined: 03/28/2013
Posts: 166

I thought most would be like our plan of action. Meaning have your ADR's and that plans out what park you will start and finish. Planning everything out to a "T" (to me) would take away from the experience that is between ADR's, rides & attractions. There is a lot to see at Disney World that has absolutely nothing to do with an attraction.

I'm a big people watcher to be honest. I don't mind finding a nice cool place to relax. Have an adult beverage (or two) and just watch people enjoying their time as we do ours at Disney. Amazing what can happen while you just sit there relaxing. A street show you have never seen or heard of could pop up. A cast member could go out of their way to make your visit something special. Who knows. That's the beauty of it.

We just like to stroll around and take everything in we possibly can. Tough to do when you "have" to be at point A by [insert time here] then at point B at [insert time here]. This isn't work, this is your holiday. You work your tail off to get there. Enjoy it while you can mickey mickey

mrhub - Glad I'm not the only one who rocks the speedo around the World resort hopping wink wink

__________________

~Eddie G.
Fla. Res. AP Holder Since 1989
404 Days at Disney World & Counting

[url='http://www.mickeypath.com/']

[/url]

The Colonel's picture
Offline
Joined: 11/08/2012
Posts: 2936

I like to make a few ADRs, not too many. Usually one dinner ADR every other day. Almost never two ADRs in one day. I like to keep it loose so I can just wander around and enjoy myself. I have an idea of where I'll be each day just based on park hours and logistics, but I'm not running from ride to ride.

I try to do one new thing each trip, whether it be a tour, a restaurant or whatever.

The perfect Disney day for me is sleep late. Breakfast on the Boardwalk. Lounge around SAB all day. Dinner at Yachtsman or somewhere in Epcot. Wander around WS and have a drink or two. Watch Illuminations, and finish off the night at Jellyrolls.

__________________

See my Disney Photography at...
https://www.flickr.com/photos/rt_images/

DVC owner since 2002 BCV/BWV/BLT/VGC

Offline
Joined: 05/20/2013
Posts: 166

I definitely don't plan everything out. When I'm solo I really don't plan. I do use easyWDW & keep the parks' information (hours, EMH, recommended status, etc.) with me but that's typically the extent of my planning except for adr's but most trips I do counter service only. Most days I end up deciding where to go based on the recommended parks either on my way to the bus stops or at the bus stops. I enjoy just meandering around & soaking up the atmosphere & people watching as much as I enjoy the rides.

Kat's picture
Kat
Offline
Joined: 05/05/2012
Posts: 395

I'm definitely more of a planner--not because I necessarily need to stick to the plan, but because I enjoy the planning, haha: especially when we're not going on our next trip for almost five years, the planning is the fun part right now and it'll be a while til the actual vacation. I know what park we're going to go to each day, and I make touring plans or "plans of action" for ride orders, when to get lunch, when to go to the hotel, etc.: but of course, these are loose, and can be changed at any time Smile For me, I'm actually able to relax MORE when I know I have a plan of attack, rather than feeling aimless and not knowing where neccessarily to go next (but that could be because I'm a relative newbie and don't have that many trips under my belt!!).

__________________

Fall 2015: Master's Degree Graduation Trip, Details TBD! Can't wait to be back in the World!
Nov. 2014: Baby's First 1/2 Day at the Magic Kingdom; our date day at Hollywood studios
Jan. 2014: Our princess was born!
May 2013: Our POR & DCL honeymoon (& my husband's first Disney trip of hopefully many!)
May 2013: Our Disney-themed wedding

Allie's picture
Offline
Joined: 06/26/2012
Posts: 5463

I usually pick which park we'll be at when based on EMHs, crowd calendars, and special events that we want to hit, then I book ADRs based on which parks we'll be at on that day/time. I also usually make a tentative list of certain things I'd like to do that day (rides, shows, etc) but am usually pretty flexible with it and I don't make plans down to the second or anything.

Eddie G.'s picture
Offline
Joined: 03/28/2013
Posts: 166

Kat - I enjoy the trip planning part of it as well. My wife leaves me to plan all of our holiday trips. Which she knows I enjoy anyway. Once the trip planning is over....Nothing to do then but wait. Which stinks. Good thing for these boards to read how everyone else's trips have gone or are coming along in the planning stages.

__________________

~Eddie G.
Fla. Res. AP Holder Since 1989
404 Days at Disney World & Counting

[url='http://www.mickeypath.com/']

[/url]

Mase's picture
Offline
Joined: 03/02/2011
Posts: 5438

Yeah... usually for us its planned ADR's for dinner and thats it. We try to check to see what could be the less busiest park, but usually go wherever the wind blows us.

__________________

- 2013 Trip Report!
- My Int3ractiv3 Trip R3port '12 - CLICK HERE!
[url='http://www.wdwforgrownups.com/forum/pick-mases-dinner-disney']- My Interactive Trip Report '11[/url]

finngirl's picture
Offline
Joined: 04/11/2012
Posts: 1072

We semi-plan. Or I should say *I* semi- plan. Peter doesn't like planning anything, but also doesn't like standing in lines too much, etc., so my first thing is to see which are the recommended parks every day on easywdw. We only started making ADR's last year - one more thing Peter didn't want to plan. Now that he's discovered that it's nice to get into restaurants we could never get into on other trips, he's a convert. laugh Anyway, once I've figured out where we are likely to be each day, we make a few ADR's - in a week, we might have 3. We are early risers, so we usually do rope drop, and have our favourites that we do right away. After that, we just go where we want, eat what we want, and if we get tired, go back to the resort for some pool time. It's very relaxing for us - we see and do everything that's important, but never feel we *have* to stay in the parks for the entire day. Our list of important things changes every trip, depending on our mood.

__________________

Diana

Time marches on. Eventually you realize it's doing it across your face.

Offline
Joined: 09/12/2010
Posts: 4703

Despite the looks of my spreadsheet, I really only plan the park we will start out with each day. Any ADRs factor heavily into that. It's not so much about having a plan and sticking to it, it's more about filling the time between when we decide to go and the day we leave!

We don't plan any rides or details beyond which park (except for MNSSHP), though we have a general idea of what we will do and the order just based on past experiences and timing.

But everyting is subject to immediate change if and as we feel. It's a vacation, not a project!

Eddie G.'s picture
Offline
Joined: 03/28/2013
Posts: 166

JeffC wrote:
It's a vacation, not a project!

1000000% agree with that, Jeff.

__________________

~Eddie G.
Fla. Res. AP Holder Since 1989
404 Days at Disney World & Counting

[url='http://www.mickeypath.com/']

[/url]

crazycatperson's picture
Offline
Joined: 09/19/2011
Posts: 3709

When I planned WDW trips after a two- or three-year absence, I planned extensively. Not just which parks and which restaurants, but also a detailed touring plan for each park to make sure we got to do everything we wanted to do.

Since 2010 I've gone every year, so I don't feel the need for such detailed plans. Having been there relatively recently, I remember what I want to see/do and the best way to tour each park. And if I miss something one year, I know it won't be too terribly long until I'm back to try again. I still plan which park (or parks; we always get park hoppers) to visit each day based on crowd estimates and dining reservations, but even that is flexible if the crowd estimates change or we just feel like going someplace else instead of the scheduled park du jour. ADRs to really popular places like Ohana are set in stone and must be worked around, but ADRs to less popular restaurants can be cancelled and rescheduled if it suits our fancy.

rylin's picture
Offline
Joined: 06/28/2013
Posts: 42

I am trying to do a combination of obsessive planning + being laid-back for our upcoming trip in September. It's my boyfriend's first WDW trip, and I haven't been since I went in 2005 to visit a friend doing the college program, so I really want to make sure we're able to check all of our "must-do" items off.

I have pretty specific plans for the first 3 days of our 5 days in the parks. Day 4 is BF's birthday, so we'll pretty much be doing whatever he wants to do! Other than dinner reservations at Le Cellier, no specifics. And Day 5 I figure we can just explore and enjoy a more leisurely pace for our final day!

Planning is definitely part of the fun for me, though. Even if we end up scrapping the plans and just seeing where the days take us, I don't regret the time I've spent planning because it just helps ramp up my excitement even more!

Magic Mirror's picture
Offline
Joined: 09/18/2012
Posts: 2979

I'm a planner! I love researching and reading the history behind the attractions....I will plan which park we are doing which days based on EMH's and MVMC...we are not getting a park hopper next time so getting every minute out of our park ticket is important...also we like to have some days between park days for touring resorts and shopping DTD.....once we are in the park we usually go counter clockwise and just wing the rides..if there's a new ride we will head there first to nab fast passes....otherwise we take it as it comes.....this time i am making notes on counter service menu options so we know ahead of time what we are hungry for and where we can find it.

WDWfanatic's picture
Offline
Joined: 01/18/2013
Posts: 356

I love planning! I have a certain plan that must remain unchanged each trip.

Our never miss, must hit ADR's. Ohana and Biergarten. My Husband does most of the driving on our trips to WDW. We generally leave the World for home on Sunday. So, he doesn't want to have an overstuffed belly the night before, it makes him want to sleep through the drive home. But, since those are our favorites, I like to schedule Ohana for Friday night, two nights before we leave for home, or at the end of the week somewhere. And I try to get my Biergarten dinner in toward the end of the week, but really it all depends on crowd levels and EMH. That one is not as important to end the week on as having my Ohana at the end, something to savor as we leave WDW.

I do plan at least one day, mid week usually, where we have no ADR's or anything. That has turned into a Downtown Disney Day, and now my oldest Daughter (will be 5 in Aug) likes Rainforest and T-Rex. So my no plan, no ADR day has turned into a massive shopping day (boo hoo for me wink ) and a lunch ADR at whichever of those restaurants she picks.

Then I am really picky about where I want my ADR's based on crowd level predictions. After that, it's pretty much go with the flow. We do have our "right in the gate FP run" plans. I don't do big fun thrill rides anymore, I get sick. It's terrible. So I usually do small rides and more shopping with the my youngest (now 2) while my Husband does big rides with the oldest. We don't have a plan beyond that though. Usually. It's just too hard to have a strict plan when we go off in different directions like that.

__________________

Tammi

Offline
Joined: 08/01/2012
Posts: 2037

I have a plan but it is not written in stone. We plan to open the parks and be there until around 1:00, go back to our resort to rest and then get ready for our ADRs.

JMUDukz's picture
Offline
Joined: 03/28/2012
Posts: 822

I always plan what parks I'm doing what days. But I've always gone with larger groups and you have to plan or its like herding cats. Once I get into the park, I go where ever I feel, but there are certain things I am drawn too. For instance, in MK, I prefer the whole left side of the park (Adventureland, Frontierland) to Tomorrowland, so I try to do Tomorrowland first so its done and I can focus on my faves!

I apparently cannot spell tonight. I'm fixing mistakes as I find them but I apologize for my fat fingers!

__________________

magicalkingdoms.com Ticker

magicalkingdoms.com Ticker

WDWfanatic's picture
Offline
Joined: 01/18/2013
Posts: 356

We alternate going left or right. But I like to end in Tomorrowland. TTA and CoP are rides that yell out to me "Please, rest here, your feet need elevation, you need A/C, would you like a breeze?, please, relax" But I could say the same about Tiki Room and Jungle Cruise. It's all relative, I guess.

__________________

Tammi

JoAnn C's picture
Offline
Joined: 05/20/2011
Posts: 6603

I plan what parks I go to based on ADRs. Once in the park, anything goes.

__________________

DIStickers.com Ticker

DIStickers.com Ticker

DIStickers.com Ticker

DIStickers.com Ticker

Vettelover's picture
Offline
Joined: 03/28/2009
Posts: 4654

mrhub wrote:
Eddie we do about the same thing. We plan our ADR's so we know where we are going to eat, and the rest, we just go with the flow. This trip is really laid back other then the ADR's we booked a wishes cruise and the dessert party, that's it.

We are gonna park it till it gets to hot, go back to the resort, (get my speedo on!) and pool time it is!. Maybe do some resort hopping here and there. We are not "Commando type" Disney people, but that's our way. Everyone does it differently.

My goodness the speedo is bad enough I certainly do not want to even imagine Commando. laugh rolling

__________________

Offline
Joined: 08/01/2012
Posts: 2037

Vettelover wrote:
mrhub wrote:
Eddie we do about the same thing. We plan our ADR's so we know where we are going to eat, and the rest, we just go with the flow. This trip is really laid back other then the ADR's we booked a wishes cruise and the dessert party, that's it.

We are gonna park it till it gets to hot, go back to the resort, (get my speedo on!) and pool time it is!. Maybe do some resort hopping here and there. We are not "Commando type" Disney people, but that's our way. Everyone does it differently.

My goodness the speedo is bad enough I certainly do not want to even imagine Commando. laugh rolling

eek eek

Courtney's picture
Offline
Joined: 12/02/2011
Posts: 239

I love Pre planning. Reading the Disney food blog, reading the most recent unofficial guide, checking latest news here. We usually have 1 ADR per day and I like to make a list of possible counter service restaurants. And a list of must try snacks. The snacks are thanks to AJ.
I usually have a mental list of must do attractions and ones we don't need to do again.
We wing most of our days but as most of here know a little knowledge ahead of time can make a huge difference in the disney experience .

Now if only AJ would come out with one of her guide books for Disneyland .

__________________

www.MyVacationCountdown.com Ticker

disneydoc's picture
Offline
Joined: 06/27/2012
Posts: 2415

PirateGirl wrote:
Vettelover wrote:
mrhub wrote:
Eddie we do about the same thing. We plan our ADR's so we know where we are going to eat, and the rest, we just go with the flow. This trip is really laid back other then the ADR's we booked a wishes cruise and the dessert party, that's it.

We are gonna park it till it gets to hot, go back to the resort, (get my speedo on!) and pool time it is!. Maybe do some resort hopping here and there. We are not "Commando type" Disney people, but that's our way. Everyone does it differently.

My goodness the speedo is bad enough I certainly do not want to even imagine Commando. laugh rolling

eek eek

Guys, can you just imagine us all in one room? rolling

__________________

magicalkingdoms.com Ticker DIStickers.com Ticker

robertcraig's picture
Offline
Joined: 05/19/2011
Posts: 138

i book a few things before i go such as adrs and shows but leave some days till i get there and then decide

__________________

robertcraig

Offline
Joined: 08/01/2012
Posts: 2037

disneydoc wrote:
PirateGirl wrote:
Vettelover wrote:
mrhub wrote:
Eddie we do about the same thing. We plan our ADR's so we know where we are going to eat, and the rest, we just go with the flow. This trip is really laid back other then the ADR's we booked a wishes cruise and the dessert party, that's it.

We are gonna park it till it gets to hot, go back to the resort, (get my speedo on!) and pool time it is!. Maybe do some resort hopping here and there. We are not "Commando type" Disney people, but that's our way. Everyone does it differently.

My goodness the speedo is bad enough I certainly do not want to even imagine Commando. laugh rolling

eek eek

Guys, can you just imagine us all in one room? rolling

awesome We would have so much fun!

MrHub's picture
Offline
Joined: 10/29/2009
Posts: 9429

PirateGirl wrote:
disneydoc wrote:
PirateGirl wrote:
Vettelover wrote:
mrhub wrote:
Eddie we do about the same thing. We plan our ADR's so we know where we are going to eat, and the rest, we just go with the flow. This trip is really laid back other then the ADR's we booked a wishes cruise and the dessert party, that's it.

We are gonna park it till it gets to hot, go back to the resort, (get my speedo on!) and pool time it is!. Maybe do some resort hopping here and there. We are not "Commando type" Disney people, but that's our way. Everyone does it differently.

My goodness the speedo is bad enough I certainly do not want to even imagine Commando. laugh rolling

eek eek

Guys, can you just imagine us all in one room? rolling

awesome We would have so much fun!

gaah banana banana bighug

Mandy's picture
Offline
Joined: 06/18/2013
Posts: 2402

When I use to vacation at Walt Disney World (I live like 10 minutes away, so we don't really have to vacation anymore but we plan to) I would make ADR's and we would go to that park or the park closest if it was at a resort for that day. when we had reservations at Crystal Palace, we would spend the day at MK and so forth. we would make a plan of the attractions we wanted to do along with planning out which characters we wanted to meet. We would typically try to get to the park as early as possible to make most out of our day.

Kris1971's picture
Offline
Joined: 08/10/2011
Posts: 2350

I plan what days for which parks based on the EMH's, crowds and ADRs, but other than that its go with the flow!

__________________

BoBo713's picture
Offline
Joined: 04/16/2012
Posts: 380

We normally make a list of all the places we want to eat and which ones we need ADRs for. Then we work out the park closing times, so we know if it's a late night in the parks or head to DTD. Add in any extra events like MNSSHP, MVMCP or if its Food and Wine time, or any events out of the world. We then put it all on paper, making sure we get the days in the parks spaced evenly out, throw in a few shopping days, a visit to Typhoon Lagoon, then add in the restaurants. Stick it all in to a planner and job done............ but it's never cast in stone. If we need to swap days in various parks or if the weather forces a change, it's never a problem, after all it's a vacation.

Working with a plan means that we don't spend time that morning tryin to make a decision on where we're going for the day, just more time enjoying WDW. Doing all the planning beforehand is also part of the fun, it always builds up the excitement for the main event.

__________________

BoBo

"Live well, laugh loud & love much"