Pretrip Report: First Solo adult trip!

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starwarsgirl95's picture
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Pretrip Report: First Solo adult trip!

So I'm going to WDW from January 3-11. Let me explain what happened here. My family always goes on two trips a year, one in August and one in January. When I was in high school, they used to pull me out for a few days. But now I'm in college, and I have to be back on January 13 for classes, and skipping is a bad idea. So my dad, who is awesome, said that he would be willing to pay for a room if I could find a girlfriend to go with me. Yea! clapping So my best friend since childhood is going with me. We're both 18 and living at home. I've been to WDW over 40 times (yeah, I know) and she hasn't been in 4 years. We'll be staying at Pop Century. We will be using Magic Bands. I debated on opting out (I'm an AP holder, so my pass is separate, but decided to go with the flow). Mine is pink, hers (we'll call her bff) is blue. Here is the tentative itinerary:

January 3:

Dinner 7:15 at Cape May Cafe
Arrive at 12:30 pm (9:15 am flight out of BWI)

Hollywood Studios or Epcot

Epcot Extra Magic Hours 9-11

January 4

Magic Kingdom and Epcot (basically spend day at MK and if it's too crowded, go to Epcot)

Dinner 7 PM Kona (Polynesian)

MK is open until 11

I'm worried about the crowds at MK on Saturday, but Splash Mountain is closing on Monday, and it's bff's favorite ride, so we're going to try it and leave if the crowds are bad.

January 5

Animal Kingdom

Boma's 5:15 pm

Head to MK

Magic Kingdom EMH 10-12

Probably will watch Wishes

January 6

Hollywood Studios

Fantasmic! 7 pm

8:45 Restaurant Marakeesh (Morocco)

Epcot EMH 9-11

January 7

Magic Kingdom

Be Our Guest 8:00 PM

January 8

Whichever park we'd like to hit again for the day

Teppan Edo 6:55 PM

January 9

Hollywood Studios

5:20 Prime Time Cafe

Possible Fantasmic! Night as well, 7 PM

January 10

Whichever park we want to hit again

Les Chefs de France, Epcot 8 PM

January 11

Another "blank" day, Magical Express picks us up at 5:45

We're planning on doing Disney Quest on one of our "blank" days, whichever one looks the worst or the day that we leave. We'll decide that when we get down there. Another "blank" day will probably be used for a second Animal Kingdom day.

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Not sure if you know this or not but the Walt Disney World Marathon weekend is January 8-12. Crowds aren't usually that bad but some of the resorts may be fuller then usual. There will be road closures in early morning because most of the races start at 5:30 am and the 5k starts at 6:15 am.

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Mandy wrote:
Not sure if you know this or not but the Walt Disney World Marathon weekend is January 8-12. Crowds aren't usually that bad but some of the resorts may be fuller then usual. There will be road closures in early morning because most of the races start at 5:30 am and the 5k starts at 6:15 am.

Yes I was aware. I thought it was strange when I looked and saw that Epcot randomly didn't have an EMH on Friday night. I'm not expecting it to be a huge issue as we aren't old enough to rent a car, so we won't have one, and the earliest we ever get started is 11 am. I don't do mornings Wink I'm avoiding Epcot except for dinner on those days though. I'm not giving up my Chefs de France reservation.

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Today when I went to my account, I found that on my second hotel reservation (in order to get the AP rate, we had to split the reservations) and I found that it listed my friend's name twice!!! waiting whoopdedoo I called and got the reservation fixed. Had to relink it, but anyway...

My friend's pass arrived in the mail today! So that means we can now make FP+ reservations. I've got Fastpass+ reservations for 6 out of the 9 days (the days where we know for sure what we're doing). It's nice to know we'll definitely be able to get on TSM and Splash Mountain. Those were the big two. And because we both have cards, we'll be able to use our passes for regular Fastpasses. I booked times for the first weekend, so we should be good since I'm expecting larger crowds

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starwarsgirl95 wrote:
Mandy wrote:
Not sure if you know this or not but the Walt Disney World Marathon weekend is January 8-12. Crowds aren't usually that bad but some of the resorts may be fuller then usual. There will be road closures in early morning because most of the races start at 5:30 am and the 5k starts at 6:15 am.

Yes I was aware. I thought it was strange when I looked and saw that Epcot randomly didn't have an EMH on Friday night. I'm not expecting it to be a huge issue as we aren't old enough to rent a car, so we won't have one, and the earliest we ever get started is 11 am. I don't do mornings Wink I'm avoiding Epcot except for dinner on those days though. I'm not giving up my Chefs de France reservation.

Okay just making sure you were aware.

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Sounds like a super fun trip! Have a great time!

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You're itinerary looks great! I've always wanted to eat in that Morocco restaurant- somehow we've always overlooked it, although that area is my favorite in the WS awesome

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MeganLeigh wrote:
You're itinerary looks great! I've always wanted to eat in that Morocco restaurant- somehow we've always overlooked it, although that area is my favorite in the WS awesome

I've eaten there before; it's just been a while. I let my friend pick where we eat that night. I only let her pick two places. Wink

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Magic Bands arrived in the mail! We got the first set on Thursday and the second set on Friday! We also got our Magical Express tags!!!
clapping
yay


We have two sets of Magic Bands since we are on two reservations and have received them both. We also got our Magical Express tags.

It's all really happening!

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yay yay yay

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Yay! Sounds like a fun trip! I love going to WDW with my folks, but just going with friends is a different type of fun! Smile

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Made our FP+ reservations. Here is the schedule:
Friday, Jan 3 DHS
Star Tours 2-3 PM
TSMM 3:34-4:45
TofT 5:20-6:20

Saturday, Jan 4 MK
Splash Mountain 1-2
BTMR 2-3
Space Mountain 4:30-5:30

Sunday, Jan 5 AK
DINOSAUR 11-12
EE 12:55-1:55
Safari 4-5

Monday, Jan 6 DHS
2-3 Rock 'n Roller Coaster
TofT 3:10-4:10
Great Movie Ride 4:40-5:40

Tuesday, Jan 7 MK
Space Mountain 1:55-2:55
BTMR 3-4
Peter Pan 5-6

Wednesday, Jan 8
No FP, we have not decided what park to do that day yet

Thurs. Jan 9
1-2 Star Tours
2-3 TofT
3:45-4:45 TSMM

No FP+ for rest of trip as we have not decided on plans for Friday or Saturday

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Looks good! A couple thoughts....

we have never waited more than 20 minutes for the Great Movie Ride...
(especially if you leave it till around lunch or later in the day)
lines move pretty fast...if there was something else you also wanted a FP
for that might be one to sacrifice ?

Also, I hear (but have no personal experience) the animals at AK on the safari are more active in the morning..
also if it is close to the time they put them up for the evening and feed them,
perhaps there will be less food available in the "planted" areas along the safari
road and they will be moving to the back where they get let in their holding areas???

I didn't see Haunted Mansion on your MK list...perhaps not a fan?
That ride had the longest wait - it was running almost 2 hrs except
for very late in the evening..if you were thinking of hitting it......

Great calls on the tower of terror, peter pan flight and toy story mania-
those lines were seriously long when we were there!!!!!!

Don't you just love planning???? !!!!! yay

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Magic Mirror wrote:
Looks good! A couple thoughts....

we have never waited more than 20 minutes for the Great Movie Ride...
(especially if you leave it till around lunch or later in the day)
lines move pretty fast...if there was something else you also wanted a FP
for that might be one to sacrifice ?


DHS has a tiered system. Epcot is the other park to have this system. Basically, you can select one FP from the first tier and two from the second tier. I will only get FP+ for rides, and TSMM and Rock 'n Roller Coaster are first tiered attractions. In the second tier are Great Movie Ride, Star Tours, and TofT. Since I can't repeat TofT, I'm doing Star Tours and Great Movie Ride. Star Tours I know I will pretty much not need a FP+ for, so I have a just in case one on the most crowded day. I've been during this time of year before, and I know Great Movie Ride can get crowded since it's a ride little kids can get on. I can always change it. We both have regular card passes, so we can "double dip" with paper Fastpasses if the crowds are terribly heavy anywhere except Animal Kingdom.

Magic Mirror wrote:
Also, I hear (but have no personal experience) the animals at AK on the safari are more active in the morning..
also if it is close to the time they put them up for the evening and feed them,
perhaps there will be less food available in the "planted" areas along the safari
road and they will be moving to the back where they get let in their holding areas???

They are actually pretty active in the afternoons as well. It's been my family's trick for years. We are not planning on being there before 11 am. We have always found it to work quite well to hit the Safari last. They know they are about to get fed and taken in, so they are excited.

Magic Mirror wrote:
I didn't see Haunted Mansion on your MK list...perhaps not a fan?
That ride had the longest wait - it was running almost 2 hrs except
for very late in the evening..if you were thinking of hitting it......

It's one of my least favorites for religious reasons, though I will get on it if others in my group want to get on it. Last August I never saw it longer than an hour wait, and in the evenings is when we like to be there, so we could hit it later if necessary. We'd rather do the big stuff, and for later in the week, I know what a pain in the butt Peter Pan can be to get on. I'm not expecting it to be crowded after Saturday. January crowds are generally light. Heck, last year I got on Space Mountain four times in a row because it was a ten minute wait. It's mostly little kids who aren't in school.

Magic Mirror wrote:
Great calls on the tower of terror, peter pan flight and toy story mania-
those lines were seriously long when we were there!!!!!!

Don't you just love planning???? !!!!! yay


Yeah, I knew we wouldn't do TSM without FP+. Funny thing about that ride: in Disneyland, middle of the day in June, it was 45 minutes. It went down later in the day. Peter Pan is just as ridiculously long out there. I don't get it. To me, it's a cool ride, but I would not wait more than 15 minutes for it. I could do without it, but Splash Mountain is closing after Monday, and that is the other attraction I would use a FP for, so we might as well do Peter Pan.

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I didn't know about the tiered Fast Pass's....
I didn't notice ours being in any tier..does the tier
only apply if you buy a ticket a certain way
such as buying a "hard ticket" vs. going with the magic your way
or having an annual pass?

Looks like you have it all in good standing then awesome
Can't wait to read your trip report when you get home......
yay yay yay yay yay yay yay

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Magic Mirror wrote:
I didn't know about the tiered Fast Pass's....
I didn't notice ours being in any tier..does the tier
only apply if you buy a ticket a certain way
such as buying a "hard ticket" vs. going with the magic your way
or having an annual pass?

Looks like you have it all in good standing then awesome
Can't wait to read your trip report when you get home......
yay yay yay yay yay yay yay

When we met up with Mase and Jess in November they told us that the Fastpass+ was being changed so you couldn't get fastpass+ for all the popular attractions the same day. Apparently it started for Epcot then DHS and I guess MK and AK will be next. If you already made your selections like we did (and you must have too) you were fine and could keep them.

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Magic Mirror wrote:
I didn't know about the tiered Fast Pass's....
I didn't notice ours being in any tier..does the tier
only apply if you buy a ticket a certain way
such as buying a "hard ticket" vs. going with the magic your way
or having an annual pass?

Looks like you have it all in good standing then awesome
Can't wait to read your trip report when you get home......
yay yay yay yay yay yay yay

They just started it a couple of weeks ago for Epcot and Hollywood Studios. So for Hollywood Studios, Tier 1 attractions are Fantasmic, Rock 'n Roller Coaster, Toy Story Mania, and Beauty and the Beast. The rest are tier 2. In Epcot, Illuminations, Soarin', Maelstrom, Test Track, and the character Meet and Greet are tier 1 while the rest are tier 2. They haven't started a tiered system at MK or AK yet, though they are currently testing no paper FPs at all at AK, so I don't think they are going to start something new for now. We got lucky because I'm an annual passholder and she purchased her ticket separately, so we can get both FP+ and paper FP. Resort guests right now normally only get FP+.

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Attractions were tiered when I was there over Thanksgiving week too. mickey

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Magic Mirror's picture
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Oh no sad I understand why they are doing the tier,
but that really stinks, especially if you are only in the park one day
during your visit....... waiting

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So let me get this straight...you can't get a FP for TSM and RnRC or Soarin and TT in one day? That really sucks....

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Allie wrote:
So let me get this straight...you can't get a FP for TSM and RnRC or Soarin and TT in one day? That really sucks....

Yup. And you also can't get a FP for multiple parks. So if I am in Animal Kingdom on Sunday but then we hop over to MK, we won't be able to "split" it and do two attractions at AK and two at MK. I'm just hoping that a lot of people are leaving that evening and the crowds won't be too bad.

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VelcroPooh

Ok, that does stink. That hadn't started when we were there. I would have been majorly disappointed in that.

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that's so cool...I may be doing a solo trip next October..I hope

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Sounds awesome!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Have a magical time!!!!!!!!!!!!! muchlove

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Eventually, the paper fastpasses are going away. That sounds like a great trip!

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So there may be a change in plans. Some family friends of ours are coming over on Monday Jan 6. They live in Florida and wanted to see me. That being the case, we're probably going to change our FP+ times. Probably just going to use Rock'n Roller Coaster and Tower of Terror and skip the third. We'll do maybe Star Tours a few times and mainly shows as one member of our party can't do anything intense as she has vertigo otherwise. I don't know if she can do Star Tours, but We'll do that one for sure. Her son (24) and I bonded over Star Wars (he said he never met a girl who "got it" before) so there is no way we'd skip riding that one together. We may change dinner reservations around too. They aren't sure how late they can stay or if their other son and his wife will come too. I'm supposed to hear back by the end of this weekend. Also, the husband worked for a radio station affiliated with ABC, so he's a retired CM and therefore gets a 40% discount. We're going shopping. yay Laughing out loud

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Yay!!!

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Don't forget that you can do your FP+ selections, then when you get to the park, get a regular FP. The two systems are not linked.

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The Colonel wrote:
Don't forget that you can do your FP+ selections, then when you get to the park, get a regular FP. The two systems are not linked.

Yup, I know. The only place where I won't be able to do that is Animal Kingdom as they've gone to 100% FP+. Non resort guests make reservations at a kiosk on the day they arrive.

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starwarsgirl95 wrote:
The Colonel wrote:
Don't forget that you can do your FP+ selections, then when you get to the park, get a regular FP. The two systems are not linked.

Yup, I know. The only place where I won't be able to do that is Animal Kingdom as they've gone to 100% FP+. Non resort guests make reservations at a kiosk on the day they arrive.

MK will also being the fastpass+ test as well around Jan 6.

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Magic Mirror, the tiered thing actually happened while we were all there. I tried to change times on my EPCOT FP+ one day and i could only choose one or the other of Test Track of Soarin'. It's a bummer especially if you're only going to be in the park for one day, but on the plus side, once paper fast passes go away, it should make the standby lines shorter!!

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Trip Reports:
December 2013: 10th Anniversary, 1st DVC Stay | April 2014: Birthday on the Boardwalk | May 2014: Star Wars Weekend, Navigating WDW with a wheelchair | August 2014: Villains Unleashed | September/October 2014: MNSSHP, F&W, Tower of Terror 10-miler | March/April 2015: Disneyland and California Coastal Cruise | November 2015: Wine & Dine Half, Food & Wine, 1st Disney Cruise | February 2016: Presidential Classic Gymnastics Meet | March 2016: "Work" Trip, Tours, F&G Festival | April 2016: Conference at Disneyland | Fall 2016: Festive Fall Fun | January 2017: Festival of the Arts | May 2017: AbD Backstage Magic | July 2017: AbD San Francisco | Sorry I had to give up doing trip reports. Too many time commitments right now.