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  • On May 14, 2023
    Ray from Wiltshire Asked Please note that experiences, policies, pricing and other offerings are subject to change and may have changed since the date of this answer.

    When adding all our guests, for 2 people I allowed them to take control of their planning. This has backfired and they are unable to do so. How can I take control back of their planning

    Greetings, Ray!  

    Oh boy, it’s tough for us planners, eh? We don’t want to be viewed as Maleficent, trying to control everything under our power. Yet we can’t be like Elsa and simply let it go. You’ve been kind to let others have the option for managing their own plans but as Sebastian the crab says, “give them an inch, they swim all over you.” I’m here to help you understand what’s possible within My Disney Experience to streamline your planning and reduce stress for everyone. It looks like you have a Walt Disney World Resort vacation planned for the most magical time of the year, so let’s get organized!

    For a family or travel party of any size, it’s best to connect everyone to you (the primary planner extraordinaire) in My Disney Experience using the Friends and Family List. I suggest you do this on a computer and ensure everyone in your group is connected to you. This enables you to see plans for the group, and to eventually make dining reservations or Genie+ plans for everyone (or select individuals). If any of your Guests are children, you will see a checkbox to “manage their plans” and no other Guest can then make reservations on their behalf. Encourage your adult Guests to "share all plans" so that you can have insight into what may have been reserved or not so far. Adults may always continue to go rogue, but I suggest you explain the benefits of your centralized planning approach and help them understand how you will make things seamless and practically perfect for the special trip if you’re able to see everything from a broad perspective.

    Once you have everyone connected as Family and Friends, you should be able to view the resort reservations, theme park tickets, and theme park reservations made so far for each Guest. Before your next milestone of 60 days (about 2 months) out from arrival, I suggest you gather input from everyone to help them feel a part of the decision making. Perhaps make a fun game out of compiling everyone’s “must-dos” and priorities. When that magical day comes, you will be viewed as Mr. Incredible for snagging all the amazing dining options and strategizing a practically perfect theme park day through the guidance of Disney Genie Service.  

    It’s not easy being green – oh, I mean the super-duper planner of any group. There's joy in the journey and planning the components of a special Walt DIsney World Resort vacation just comes naturally to some of us! Be like the Family Madrigal and allow your Guests to contribute their own special powers to the trip so that you can focus on the details. As others feel helpful, they will hopefully let you lean into your own strengths. Perhaps someone can oversee the coordinated outfits or order special themed tee shirts? Another person can be on point for a grocery order, and yet another for making the perfect theme park bag packing list – there are countless ways for everyone to feel a part of this incredible trip and allow you to do what you do best. Walt Disney said, "togetherness for me, means teamwork."

    Us technology pros and planners must stick together, Ray – feel free to write me back directly with additional concerns or questions. You are a gift to your travel companions, and I know they will appreciate all your hard work.  

    YOU are the magic, 
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Meet the Panelist: Amy, Virginia

Hi friends! I'm Amy, a lifelong Disney dreamer from horse-and-wine country, Virginia. My family of three is BIG on fun and treasures every adventure together. We've been making memories at the Walt Disney World Resort and aboard Disney Cruise Line since my son was a toddler; we love our family traditions balanced with "what's new" each visit. I have a passion for Disney details, a love of digital tools, and an eye for practical planning. I can't wait to help you make the MOST of your magical vacation! Learn More About Amy

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