Friday, January 14, 2011

Disney Tips for Lotusphere attendees

Although this will be my first trip to Lotusphere, it is not my first trip to Walt Disney World. Here are some tips for touring the Disney parks either before or after Lotusphere. From what I hear there is no way to tour a park during the week with the hectic schedule of Lotusphere and the short park hours.


Tickets

  • This is the one thing you can't get around. Tickets are expensive and there is really no deals for 1 or 2 days.
  • The more days you buy the cheaper they get. 1 Day is $82 but after 4 or 5 days they get a lot cheaper per day. For instance a 10 day ticket is only $262
  • Tickets expire 14 days after first use.
  • Tickets can be upgraded within 14 days of first use. 
  • Tickets have optional upgrades like; 
    • Water park, Fun and more - Select from two fabulous Water Parks, DisneyQuest® Indoor Interactive Theme Park, ESPN Wide World of Sport; Complex or a round of golf at Disney's Oak Trail Golf Course, a relaxed, nine-hole walking course designed for the entire family.
    • Park Hopper -  lets you go to multiple parks in 1 day. And NO you cannot buy a 2 day ticket and use it in 2 parks on the same day, Disney tracks the tickets with biometrics.
    • Non-expiring - is what it says. The tickets will never expire.
  • Tickets increase in price EVERY year, usually 16% or more.
  • Tickets can be bought with (or upgraded to) non-expiring. This can be a good idea if you know you are coming back next year. Currently a 10 day non-expiring ticket is $475. If you go to the parks for 2 days a year, you will be set for the next 5 Lotuspheres!
  • Discounts are available from AAA and other ticket brokers online
  • I suggest you use the lowest price ticket calculator from Touringplans.com is searches Disney and online ticket brokers for the best prices
Discounts
  • If you are an Annual Pass Holder, Disney Vacation Club or Disney Visa card member you can get additional discounts on food and shopping.

Touring the parks
  • I highly suggest using a touring plan to get the most out of your time in the park. 
  • A touring plan basically tells you what to see and when to see it.
  • There are several websites that have these plans and you can even find personal guides to take you through the parks.
  • I highly suggest Touringplans.com I have used them on my last 8 trips and they have been extremely helpful and accurate.
    • They have different kinds of plans for adults, kids, early or late arrival, etc...
    • They have a mobile app called Lines, very useful.
    • It does cost $10.95 a year but it is money well spent and it gives you full access to the data in their mobile app "Lines"
Some good books

Mobile Apps
  • "Lines" from Touringplans.com - Android, iOS, Blackberry, Palm
    • I love this app! It will tell you estimated (and predicted) wait times and fast pass times for attractions. You can be in the Germany pavilion and see what the wait time is for Soarin' or see if any fast pass's are left. Absolutely priceless.
  • eTicket - iOS
  • Hidden Mickey's - iOS
  • Many Many more, these are ones i've used.
Websites 
Podcasts
  • DisUnplugged
  • WDW Today
  • Betamouse
  • Netcot - Hey Van, how about a new Episode?
  • Wedway Radio 
  • Be Our Guest Podcast
Fireworks!
  • Don't miss them!
  • Wishes is every night at the Magic Kingdom
  • Illuminations is every night at Epcot and can be seen from the bridge near the Boardwalk / Beach club area. 
Sorry I don't have any tips for Universal or Islands of Adventure. The Lotusphere party will be my first visit to Universal.

If have any questions or need more info on something, leave a comment or follow me on twitter @dheinle

I'll be in Epcot on Saturday with one of our business partners if anyone wants to join us.


PS:  I do not have any financial relationship with any of the above mentioned companies. I have just used them before and I am very happy customer.

PPS: If you are interested in DVC (Disney Vacation Club) let me know, sometimes they have discounts if a current member has refereed you.

1 comment:

Terra said...

OK, so I'll definitely bookmark this and get back to these reminders once in a while. Glad you posted this, first time to go to Walt Disney World actually.. (blushes)

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