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Looking into booking a trip this coming October for the wife and I.  Probably the week of the 18th.  Had some questions for the masses if you all could help me out!  Just haven’t been able to stay up on things quite as well as normal recently. Hotel availability seems really low!  Bad sign for how busy it will be?

Any rumors of FP+ coming back by then?

Anyone with experience buying DVC Points to use?  We’re looking into this as an option.

ETA:  Bummer about the food quality issues people are seeing.  Eating at the parks was always one of the highlights for us!

Edited by rodg12
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2 hours ago, rodg12 said:

Looking into booking a trip this coming October for the wife and I.  Probably the week of the 18th.  Had some questions for the masses if you all could help me out!  Just haven’t been able to stay up on things quite as well as normal recently. Hotel availability seems really low!  Bad sign for how busy it will be?

Any rumors of FP+ coming back by then?

Anyone with experience buying DVC Points to use?  We’re looking into this as an option.

ETA:  Bummer about the food quality issues people are seeing.  Eating at the parks was always one of the highlights for us!

very cool. 

Just FYI Oct 1 starts the resort's 50th anniversary celebration. So expect the volume to be higher than what you are seeing now. On the flip side, there will be a bunch of new attractions and shows to see. Ratatouille will open at Epcot, new fireworks shows at MK and Epcot, Tower of Terror and Space Ship Earth will have new light effects, and animal kingdom will have a new daytime show in the lagoon theater. Oh, and Food and Wine Festival.

As for your direct questions: 

Nothing official on FP returning yet, but more on lots of speculation on "What" it would be when it returns. Many people are expecting it to be rereleased as an upcharge item, where you'll be paying for the service vs getting it as a perk before. Or it could come back as a tiered perk where those staying at deluxe resorts would have more than those staying at value. But as for right now....nothing to report. However, given the 50th approaching fast, I would expect an announcement very soon. 

As for renting DVC points, it is a very good way to get a deluxe room at a very (comparatively) low cost. I am an owner who rented this years points, even sending a few to a fellow FBG for his upcoming trip. The best resource for this would be David's DVC Rental, they can match you with their inventory. The downside for you right now is time. You'll be at the mercy of the DVC inventory and right now, it is very much booked solid, I've been flirting with a studio in November and I cant find anything at any resort. If you have specific dates, I can check for you. 

DVC owners are allowed to book at 11 months (at the resort you own at) or 7 months (any other resort) from date of travel. So you'll have more luck with a longer timeline then shorter, esp now with the 50th and with the pent up post-pandemic demand. 

If you are fortunate enough to get a booking, a few things to know:
• Stays are based on points. Each room, at each resort, at certain times have a specific point value per day. While all DVC resorts are in the Deluxe category, some resorts are more expensive than others. You'll need to check the current point charts to see how many points you'll need. David's also has a handy cost calculator.
• The owner will need to make the reservation for you, and then transfer the booking to you. David's will contact them with your info. So you should have your information set up in the Disney web site. Once the confirmation number gets transfered to you, you'll see it in your profile. From there you can buy tickets, book magical express, etc. 
• Even though you are staying on a DVC booking, you wont get to use any DVC member benefits like discounts, lounge access, etc.  

Let me know if you need any other info 

Edited by glvsav37
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Also when you're at the park get a DOLE WHIP

 

Storybook Treats — Fantasyland, Magic Kingdom (the lime is a must!)

Pineapple Lanai — Disney’s Polynesian Village Resort

Sunshine Tree Terrace — Adventureland, Magic Kingdom

Tamu Tamu Refreshement — Africa, Animal Kingdom

The Basket at Wine Bar George (contains alcohol) — Disney Springs

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8 hours ago, glvsav37 said:

very cool. 

Just FYI Oct 1 starts the resort's 50th anniversary celebration. So expect the volume to be higher than what you are seeing now. On the flip side, there will be a bunch of new attractions and shows to see. Ratatouille will open at Epcot, new fireworks shows at MK and Epcot, Tower of Terror and Space Ship Earth will have new light effects, and animal kingdom will have a new daytime show in the lagoon theater. Oh, and Food and Wine Festival.

As for your direct questions: 

Nothing official on FP returning yet, but more on lots of speculation on "What" it would be when it returns. Many people are expecting it to be rereleased as an upcharge item, where you'll be paying for the service vs getting it as a perk before. Or it could come back as a tiered perk where those staying at deluxe resorts would have more than those staying at value. But as for right now....nothing to report. However, given the 50th approaching fast, I would expect an announcement very soon. 

As for renting DVC points, it is a very good way to get a deluxe room at a very (comparatively) low cost. I am an owner who rented this years points, even sending a few to a fellow FBG for his upcoming trip. The best resource for this would be David's DVC Rental, they can match you with their inventory. The downside for you right now is time. You'll be at the mercy of the DVC inventory and right now, it is very much booked solid, I've been flirting with a studio in November and I cant find anything at any resort. If you have specific dates, I can check for you. 

DVC owners are allowed to book at 11 months (at the resort you own at) or 7 months (any other resort) from date of travel. So you'll have more luck with a longer timeline then shorter, esp now with the 50th and with the pent up post-pandemic demand. 

If you are fortunate enough to get a booking, a few things to know:
• Stays are based on points. Each room, at each resort, at certain times have a specific point value per day. While all DVC resorts are in the Deluxe category, some resorts are more expensive than others. You'll need to check the current point charts to see how many points you'll need. David's also has a handy cost calculator.
• The owner will need to make the reservation for you, and then transfer the booking to you. David's will contact them with your info. So you should have your information set up in the Disney web site. Once the confirmation number gets transfered to you, you'll see it in your profile. From there you can buy tickets, book magical express, etc. 
• Even though you are staying on a DVC booking, you wont get to use any DVC member benefits like discounts, lounge access, etc.  

Let me know if you need any other info 

Thanks a bunch for the reply!

Yeah, part of the reason we want to go in October is for the 50th celebration. We knew it would probably be busy because of that, but not to the extent we’re seeing. We’re also pretty late in the game  my sister and brother-in-law are there right now and it gave us the itch! We haven’t been to WDW since 2017, so lots of new stuff for us to check out that the rest of my family has been able to see in the interim 

If you could check availability for checking in on 10/17 and checking out on 10/23 that would be awesome!

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1 hour ago, rodg12 said:

Thanks a bunch for the reply!

Yeah, part of the reason we want to go in October is for the 50th celebration. We knew it would probably be busy because of that, but not to the extent we’re seeing. We’re also pretty late in the game  my sister and brother-in-law are there right now and it gave us the itch! We haven’t been to WDW since 2017, so lots of new stuff for us to check out that the rest of my family has been able to see in the interim 

If you could check availability for checking in on 10/17 and checking out on 10/23 that would be awesome!

unfortunately I got what I expected...nothing. I searched every resort and at best there was a single day here and there at Saratoga but only at the 1 bedroom and above. Nothing that was a full week in that range. Sorry. 

 

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As with the Halloween party replacement, WDW is doing the same for the former Very Merry Christmas Party. 

A new after hours event called "Disney Very Merriest After Hours" will take place from Nov 8th to Dec 21st. Tickets go on sale in early August. Not much more has been said, but from the official release: 

Quote

The four hours of festivities will delight guests with “Minnie’s Wonderful Christmastime Fireworks,” Disney characters throughout the park, holiday music and décor, treats included and so much more! As with other Disney After Hours events, a limited number of tickets will be sold for this event. It’s held after regular park operating hours, with lower wait times and access to more than 20 select attractions.  

 

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7 hours ago, glvsav37 said:

unfortunately I got what I expected...nothing. I searched every resort and at best there was a single day here and there at Saratoga but only at the 1 bedroom and above. Nothing that was a full week in that range. Sorry. 

 

Thank you for checking!!!

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23 minutes ago, Deranged Hermit said:

Just read the one at the Poly is opening back up next month too.

I know things are a lot better with Covid but crowded monorail or bus is still a place I don't want to be.  

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9 hours ago, Redwes25 said:

I know things are a lot better with Covid but crowded monorail or bus is still a place I don't want to be.  

Just wait until they all break down as usual. Good times.

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1 hour ago, Deranged Hermit said:

Going to be in Florida for a few days this week. What are some of the better off-property hotels near Disney? I guess in the Lake Buena Vista area.

I checked booking.com and there's a lot of stuff available. 

We love Marriott world center. Use it all the time. Pool is being repaired right now though. 

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1 hour ago, Deranged Hermit said:

Going to be in Florida for a few days this week. What are some of the better off-property hotels near Disney? I guess in the Lake Buena Vista area.

I checked booking.com and there's a lot of stuff available. 

I'm a big fan of the Wyndham Lake Buena Vista Disney Springs. Spend a few nights there each year for a conference I attend. Its the closest hotel to Disney Springs, just a short 2 min walk with an overpass right into the old shopping area side. Get a tower room though. It's an odd resort. The tower is super clean and modern, while the garden wings out back look like an old, run down Howard Johnsons. If you can request a high room on the Disney Springs side b/c you can pretty much see the fireworks all across the property from there. They have a very nice buffet with a few Disney characters on select days, an a really nice grab and go area with the biggest doughnuts I've ever seen. 

The pool is nothing special, but when I've been there I had no need for it. 

I believe it is still considered a "Good Neighbor" resort meaning that it qualifies for some Disney perks like early entry, and being i so close to Disney Springs, its not hard to grab a bus to anywhere on property (its just a bit of a walk to the bus stop). 

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4 minutes ago, Capella said:

We love Marriott world center. Use it all the time. Pool is being repaired right now though. 

Had my Disney college program formal there. It seems like a million years ago, but the things we did there......

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14 minutes ago, glvsav37 said:

I'm a big fan of the Wyndham Lake Buena Vista Disney Springs. Spend a few nights there each year for a conference I attend. Its the closest hotel to Disney Springs, just a short 2 min walk with an overpass right into the old shopping area side. Get a tower room though. It's an odd resort. The tower is super clean and modern, while the garden wings out back look like an old, run down Howard Johnsons. If you can request a high room on the Disney Springs side b/c you can pretty much see the fireworks all across the property from there. They have a very nice buffet with a few Disney characters on select days, an a really nice grab and go area with the biggest doughnuts I've ever seen. 

The pool is nothing special, but when I've been there I had no need for it. 

I believe it is still considered a "Good Neighbor" resort meaning that it qualifies for some Disney perks like early entry, and being i so close to Disney Springs, its not hard to grab a bus to anywhere on property (its just a bit of a walk to the bus stop). 

That one is sold out, but Wyndham Garden Lake Buena Vista is available. I'm assuming that is a sister hotel?

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10 minutes ago, Deranged Hermit said:

That one is sold out, but Wyndham Garden Lake Buena Vista is available. I'm assuming that is a sister hotel?

no those are the garden wing rooms I believe, same hotel. 

If its just you, its not a bad place to lay your head. But don't expect much in terms of frills once you leave them main hotel area. 

image

Edited by glvsav37
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12 minutes ago, glvsav37 said:

no those are the garden wing rooms I believe, same hotel. 

If its just you, its not a bad place to lay your head. But don't expect much in terms of frills once you leave them main hotel area. 

image

@Deranged Hermit if the tower is booked and you can get another Disney springs hotel for the same price, I would look there. I dont want to mislead you. Its a big drop off in overall "Felling of quality" from the tower to the garden

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2 minutes ago, glvsav37 said:

@Deranged Hermit if the tower is booked and you can get another Disney springs hotel for the same price, I would look there. I dont want to mislead you. 

👍

I've been looking at a bunch of different. It doesn't necessarily have to be a Disney hotel, I won't actually be at the parks,  although I might hit up Disney Springs for dinner or something. 

I've had good luck at the Renaissance Sea World and Caribe Royal.

Edited by Deranged Hermit
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Good News: Trader Sam's Grog Grotto at the Polly reopened today without any major changes. With all of the reimagining happening at the Jungle Cruise ride to be more culturally sensitive, it was feared that Trader Sam's Grog Grotto might be undergoing similar transformation when it closed suspiciously in mid-May.

Most of the bar decor and drinks have remained intact except for removal of the shrunken heads, and 2 menu items:

• “Shrunken Zombie Head” is now “Zombie
• “Headhunter Sushi Roll” has been renamed “Kahuna Tuna Sushi Roll”

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Booked our week at Disney World Oct 17-23 today.  Staying at the All Star Movies resort.  Went with the lower cost item since we’ll basically only be staying there to sleep each night.   Plan as of now:

Fly in on the 17th in the morning, Epcot in the afternoon

18th - Magic Kingdom

19th - Hollywood Studios

20th - Animal Kingdom

21st - Magic Kingdom (my birthday)

22nd - Epcot

23rd - Fly Home

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Breaking News:

Happily Ever After (MK Fireworks show) will be permanently retired on Sept 29th.  

Same with the Epcot nighttime show Epcot Forever on the 28th

Oct 1 begins the 50th anniversary celebration and both shows will be replaced with "Harmonious" in Epcot and "Disney Enchantment" in MK for the 18 month long celebration. Epcot forever we knew was temporary (and no big loss), but I thought for sure they would be bringing HEA back being it is only 4 years old. Bummed I'm not going to see it again, my kids really loved it. 

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other news: 

The return dates of closed stage and entertainment shows have been announced

Aug 1—Wonderful World of Animation, the projection show on the Chinese Theater at Studios

Aug 8—Monster's Inc Laugh Floor 

Aug 15—Beauty and the Beast Show at Studios

Aug 21—Turtle Talk with Crush (Epcot)

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Got my dining reservations today. Got everything we wanted and more. Never been to Be our Guest for dinner (been there a few times for breakfast) but, lo and behold, there it was on our Magic Kingdom day,  so I grabbed a 6:30 reservation. Don't know if I'll keep it, but it's a nice thing to have in your back pocket.

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Bummer news. Masks will once again be required indoors at WDW and DL beginning July 30th. 

Quote

“We are adapting our health and safety guidelines based on guidance from health and government officials, and will require Cast Members and Guests ages 2 and up, to wear face coverings in all indoor locations at Walt Disney World Resort and Disneyland Resort beginning Friday, July 30, regardless of vaccination status. At Walt Disney World Resort, this includes upon entering and throughout all attractions and in enclosed transportation vehicles, including shuttles, buses, monorails and at Disney Skyliner,” reads an official statement from Disney.

 

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We've been watching the "Behind the Attractions" docs on Disney +.

Each episode is fascinating! The imagineers process and challenges is amazing. Highly recommend these.  Very well produced, funny and seeing the creation of Haunted Mansion, Tower of Terror, Space Mountain, Star Wars rides is better than Disney movies!

Halfway through. We'll binge the rest this week and then move onto "Imagineers".

Edited by Joe Mammy
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Tomorrow Disney is expected to announce their new Annual Pass program for Disneyland. The new program is rumored to be called "Disneyland's Magic Key" 

Its something to keep an eye on given that WDW has also suspended their AP program and similar changes could be happening it Orlando as well. 

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Going with extended family on wife's side (20+) in mid-September.   I'm hearing the crowds have been insane this summer so hopefully will curtail after Labor day and before the 50th anniversary starts in October.

 

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Been a while and a pandemic since I had to flex my planning muscles.  Hope I'm not too late here.. 

 

Staying off grounds and driving in for a few days at each park in late Nov.  When can a schmuck like me reserve my O'Hana? 

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53 minutes ago, Godsbrother said:

Going with extended family on wife's side (20+) in mid-September.   I'm hearing the crowds have been insane this summer so hopefully will curtail after Labor day and before the 50th anniversary starts in October.

 

I'm going the 19th-25th. I think, between the mask mandates and the start of school, we should be ok. 

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19 hours ago, Joe Mammy said:

We've been watching the "Behind the Attractions" docs on Disney +.

Each episode is fascinating! The imagineers process and challenges is amazing. Highly recommend these.  Very, well produced, funny and seeing the creation of Haunted Mansion, Tower of Terror, Space Mountain, Star Wars rides is better than Disney movies!

Halfway through. We'll binge the rest this week and then move onto "Imagineers".

Thanks for this, will definitely look this up. We really enjoyed the Imagineering Story, as well as the One Day at Disney shorts, love the behind the scenes stuff.

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2 hours ago, Deranged Hermit said:

I'm going the 19th-25th. I think, between the mask mandates and the start of school, we should be ok. 

Stay safe!  I posted in the Covid thread, but my unvaxxed, anti-mask neighbors all caught Covid at Disneyland about a week ago.  Whole family is in the hospital right now.

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1 hour ago, Dickies said:

Stay safe!  I posted in the Covid thread, but my unvaxxed, anti-mask neighbors all caught Covid at Disneyland about a week ago.  Whole family is in the hospital right now.

We're all vaxxed,  but I'd be lying if I said I wasn't a little concerned. My wife and I went this past November,  and Disney cast members were task masters when it came to enforcement of masks, so I'm not too worried about the anti-mask crowd.

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(sorry wrote this yesterday and never posted)

Details on Magic Key, the new Disneyland Annual Pass Program has just been released

4 price points, but what I'm seeing throughout is that they are keeping the reservation based system. I wonder how that will translate to WDW? What is interesting is that even at the highest tier, you can only have 6 park days reserved at a time. Full disclosure I was an AP holder b/c we would visit for 12-14 days at a time. If that holds true here at WDW, I could only reserve 1/2 of my trip. 

Also, a perk of being an AP holder was free parking. This new AP tier only has free parking on the highest tier, 50% off on the second and then not included on the last 2 (1 of which is a California Resident only pass)

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On the topic of WDW AP's. AP holders and DVC members should keep an eye on their emails b/c you should be getting one for a chance to ride the new Ratatouille ride at Epcot prior to its Oct 1st opening. 

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1 hour ago, The Commish said:

In Park Paid FastPass

Starting in Paris....basically buying fast passes per ride, per person.

knew this was coming...thanks for the updated details. 

almost $20/pp for Buzz lightyear....um no. I have a feeling this will have very bad reaction when/if it gets to the stateside parks. 

If you were traveling solo, maybe, but most parties are 5+ and an extra $100 for 1 ride is a deal breaker for most.

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3 minutes ago, glvsav37 said:

knew this was coming...thanks for the updated details. 

almost $20/pp for Buzz lightyear....um no. I have a feeling this will have very bad reaction when/if it gets to the stateside parks. 

If you were traveling solo, maybe, but most parties are 5+ and an extra $100 for 1 ride is a deal breaker for most.

agreed....we wouldn't go anywhere near it.  And to be honest, all these changes to the systems really seem to be going the wrong direction.  They had something that worked in the original fast pass system.  IMO, their first attempt was their best.  Get in the park, grab passes through the day and come back later.

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Star Wars Galactic Starcruiser prices just came out. 

These are 2 night experiences that include dining, entertainment and admission to Hollywood Studios/Galaxy's Edge. 

for 2 people its $4800 ($1,200/pp per night)
for 3 people its $5300 ($890/pp/pn)
for 4 people its I6000 ($750/pp/pn)

All the info is here

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17 minutes ago, The Commish said:

agreed....we wouldn't go anywhere near it.  And to be honest, all these changes to the systems really seem to be going the wrong direction.  They had something that worked in the original fast pass system.  IMO, their first attempt was their best.  Get in the park, grab passes through the day and come back later.

yea, I miss the old paper fastpass days. 

Agreed, these changes are not making things easier or more enjoyable. I've said it before, but I often give people advice on planning their trips and about 1/2 way through I feel like i'm writing a doctoral dissertation. 

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10 minutes ago, glvsav37 said:

yea, I miss the old paper fastpass days. 

Agreed, these changes are not making things easier or more enjoyable. I've said it before, but I often give people advice on planning their trips and about 1/2 way through I feel like i'm writing a doctoral dissertation. 

It's absolutely crazy.  I can't count how many families I've run into waiting in lines that basically say "we had no idea you had to plan your visit to the minute in order to get your money's worth".  More often times than not, especially on rainy kinds of days, I look around and feel so bad for those who are on their "vacation" desperate to get everything done despite the downpours because this is their one shot and THOUSANDS of dollars are on the line.

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