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  • On Aug 2, 2009
    Susan Asked Note: This answer was provided prior to the change to planDisney and may still contain references to Disney Parks Moms Panel.

    This panel is so helpful and FUN! Long-range planning for June, 2010, family of 4, 1st trip! Do I plan park days around ADRs or vice versa? What about Extra Magic Hours? We will stay on property and have dining plan. Can't wait! Thanks!

    Hi Susan!

    Thanks for your compliment on the panel. It's great to hear that you have enjoyed our answers and found us helpful in planning your trip!

    This is how I plan our days, and it seems to work pretty well for us: First, I make a list of all the attractions that we would like to see and do in each park. I also take into account fireworks, parades and shows. From these initial lists, you should have a basic idea of how much time you will need to devote to each park. For example, we usually spend only a day or so at the Animal Kingdom, but at least three days at the Magic Kingdom - depending on how long our vacation is.

    Once the park hours are released I decide which days I will spend at each park, Downtown Disney and our resort pool. On days with morning extra magic hours, I usually plan to hop to another park in the afternoon to avoid crowds whenever possible.

    After I decide where we'll be spending our days, I decide where to make my ADRs. I usually have a list of restaurants that we would like to try and of course we have our favorites that we try to fit in during each trip. My advice is to book your meals in the park you will be at that day or at one of the resorts closest to where you'll be. In doing so, your schedule will be streamlined and you'll make the most of your time.

    Of course, even though it's absolutely necessary to plan your itinerary be sure to allow for some spontaneity. As hard as it is when things don't go exactly according to plan, it's important to let it go sometimes and have fun. You are on vacation after all!

    I hope this helps! Have fun planning - it's almost as much fun as the vacation itself!
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Meet the Panelist: Amber, Pennsylvania

My name is Amber and I’m a stay-at-home mom from southwestern Pennsylvania. Planning my family’s Disney vacations is always so much fun. I love spreading the magic by getting others excited for their trips.
Learn More About Amber

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