Disney’s dirty secret!

Disney’s dirty secret!

Keeping Disney in Perspective… When thinking about all things Disney, including a Walt Disney World Vacation, it’s important to keep in mind what the Disney Magic runs on! It’s kind of Disney’s dirty secret! And no, it’s not imagination, although there is certainly plenty of that employed in the Disney

Visiting Disney World? Many families (and especially Travel Writers) are doing it wrong!

Visiting Disney World? Many families (and especially Travel Writers) are doing it wrong!

Travelling to experience Walt Disney World in Florida? Families (and especially Travel Writers) are doing it all wrong! I understand that many travel writers get free stays and other perks to come to Walt Disney World and write about a trip to the theme park capital of the world. But

My Best Tips and Tricks as a Disney Expert #8

My Best Tips and Tricks as a Disney Expert #8

Tip #8 The biggest way to save on a Disney World trip is how, where and what you eat! The simplest way to do this is to avoid all of the tourist traps for food… like food in the parks and the hundreds of restaurants in the area, and to

My Best Tips and Tricks as a Disney Expert #7

My Best Tips and Tricks as a Disney Expert #7

Tip #7 Take a Rain Poncho! Take folded rain ponchos with you to the theme parks. In the summer, you will need them for the frequent but short downpours which happen every day in Central Florida. In the winter, you can use them to keep from getting drenched on many

Exploring Universal Orlando Resort and Ignoring Disney on a First Trip

Exploring Universal Orlando Resort and Ignoring Disney on a First Trip

Interesting, as your dates will really only allow you to ‘do’ Universal properly anyway. You would need more time to explore greater Orlando. I recommend that guests allow three days for the Universal Florida Resort Theme Parks. There are two; the original Universal Studios, a theme park based on movies;

My Best Tips and Tricks as a Disney Expert #6

My Best Tips and Tricks as a Disney Expert #6

Tip #6 Save your Feet! This one is simple. Disney World is not the place to be fashionable! Wear good quality, well broken-in running shoes for a day in the theme parks. You will be walking, on average, at least five miles. Bring two pairs from home. You may very

My Best Tips and Tricks as a Disney Expert #5

My Best Tips and Tricks as a Disney Expert #5

Tip #5 WalMart for Souvenirs! Almost all of the unique theme park merchandise and souvenirs are available at The World of Disney Store talked about in tip #4 and there are some really terrific offerings, but like all things Disney, they are pricey. If you want to save on Disney branded

My Best Tips and Tricks as a Disney Expert #4

My Best Tips and Tricks as a Disney Expert #4

Tip #4 Don’t Waste Theme Park Time Shopping! Don’t waste expensive theme park time shopping for stuff in stores inside the park (food that you’ll consume immediately, and a few unique demonstration stores are another matter). While this is very tempting, practically everything sold in the parks is available at

How soon in advance should I book my Florida Vacation Rental?

As you think about your Florida trip, you may be wondering ‘How soon in advance should I book my villa?’ This really depends upon what season during the year you are planning to come and stay with us. We use information from Disney in reviewing and planning our rate seasons

My Best Tips and Tricks as a Disney Expert #3

My Best Tips and Tricks as a Disney Expert #3

Tip #3 Take food with you to Disney Parks! Disney allows outside food into the parks in soft-shell containers (not coolers). Freeze plastic water bottles the night before (the soft sided collapsible ones work great because they take less space as they empty), and take snacks (and even lunch), like

My Best Tips and Tricks as a Disney Expert #2

My Best Tips and Tricks as a Disney Expert #2

Tip #2 Don’t leave the parks mid-day!! Ignore the advice of the vast majority of travel writers who write about a trip to Disney World using information fed to them by Disney, especially when they recommend leaving the parks mid-day to go back to your hotel for a nap or

How to have a great Orlando theme park vacation: Lessons learned – Down time and how sweet it is!

How to have a great Orlando theme park vacation: Lessons learned – Down time and how sweet it is!

Photo above: Our second time at Disney World, 2003. I realize that what I am about to write here will sound like simple self promotion, but I would tell you the exact same thing before we purchased our home in Florida, because some of what I am going to explain is one

My Best Tips and Tricks as a Disney Expert #1

My Best Tips and Tricks as a Disney Expert #1

Tip #1 (My first tip may appear rooted in bias, but I lived by it for years, and it is what got me into my Florida vacation rentals in the first place.) Ignore the advice of the vast majority of travel writers who write about a trip to Disney World

How to have a great Orlando theme park vacation: Lessons learned – How much time you need

I often get asked how much time is needed to take in the theme parks and other activities in Orlando.  Here, in question and answer form taken from actual communications with guests, is how much time I recommend for the major attractions. (There are lots of other great things to see

The number one way to save money on an Orlando/Disney vacation!

The number one way to save money on an Orlando/Disney vacation!

I often get asked about how to save money on a trip to Disney World, and for good reason.  It is an expensive undertaking, no matter how you look at it.  Airfare, park tickets and other attractions, accommodations, food and dining, spending money and souvenirs; these can all add up

Staying in a vacation rental ‘off-site’ vs. ‘on-site’ at a Disney Resort: What happens to the ‘magic’?

Staying in a vacation rental ‘off-site’ vs. ‘on-site’ at a Disney Resort: What happens to the ‘magic’?

I received the following question from a prospective guest a few weeks ago.  It covers a lot of ground and turns over a lot of worms!  Her question: “I’m curious about one thing, most families go and stay on property with Disney (we did our first time too) and claim

Disney’s MagicBands

Disney’s MagicBands

WHAT ARE MAGICBANDS? MagicBands are rubber bracelets that contain an embedded RFID (radio frequency identification) chip and function similarly to physical park tickets. (Physical park tickets are plastic cards similar to credit cards that contain a RFID chip). You don’t have to have a MagicBand to enjoy a Disney park