• On Mar 4, 2013
    Danita Asked Note: This answer was provided prior to the change to planDisney and may still contain references to Disney Parks Moms Panel.

    Experiences, policies, pricing and other offerings are subject to change and may have changed since the date of this answer.

    Planning our first family trip to WDW. We won't actually be going until sometime next year or early 2015 (possible christmas present for the kiddos). Looking for some awesome advice on everything.

    Hi Danita! The hardest part about planning a Disney vacation will be the long wait until you arrive!

    If you are using it as a gift then do something special like ordering some "ears" with their names engraved on them for the family to open together. The screams and cheers are always a photo and video opportunity you won't want to miss!

    Your first decision is obviously the dates for the vacation. Anytime when school is out will be the most crowded time...summer and holidays. My favorite time to come is mid November before Thanksgiving, late October for Halloween, February (not Presidents weekend), and two weeks from Christmas.

    The next step is to pick a resort. There are three categories, Value, Moderate, and Deluxe. The more you spend the more amenities and better location is to the parks. For large families there are some great DVC Villa accommodations available to all guests as well as Family Suites at the new Art of Animation resort.  My favorite in each category is as follows: Value-Pop Century, Moderate-Port Orleans French Quarter, Deluxe-Yacht and Beach Club.

    Once you have the trip dates and resort chosen then you will start with an itinerary. You can make dining reservations 180 days from your arrival and you will want to do that so you can get some of the tough to get in restaurants such as Be Our Guest, Cinderella's Royal Table, and Le Cellier. At this time you will also want to decide what kind of tickets you will need. Park Hopper option is great if you want to avoid crowds as much as possible but it is one place you can save a bit of money. Sometimes the best way to plan a Disney vacation is to simply do a package that includes resort, tickets, and dining plan.
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Meet the Panelist: Kay, Indiana

Hello Adventurers and travelers! I am Kay and a past Adventures By Disney mom for the panel. But now I am excited to share vacation planning tips for those heading out for an incredible vacation to Walt Disney World. Learn More About Kay

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