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Old 2 Jun 19, 12:52 PM  
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Join Date: Oct 12
Hard Rock Hotel, Car hire & an impromptu trip to DLP

So May was a busy month what with two bank holidays, a trip up to Doncaster for my little sister's baby shower and a wonderful trip to Villages Nature Paris (basically French Center Parks). Whilst we were in France we ended up having an impromptu visit to Disneyland Paris (it would have been rude not to right?!)... if anyone would like to read about our day I have done a one-day trip report which can be found here! It was such a fab day!

But now back to the important topic of our upcoming WDW trip... we have ticked a few more thing of the list! Hurrah!

First up, car hire is sorted. This is left down to Paul to organise, he does all the driving whilst we are away so I leave him to make these decisions... if he is happy with what we are driving then I am happy! So after stalking prices for a few months he managed to snag a pretty good deal with Hertz for a mini van coming in at £440 for the two weeks we are there. We would normally get an SUV but given we are a larger party this time and will have quite substantial amount of luggage (including the pushchair) we knew a 7 seater would be necessary! Charlie's car seat that we are taking is pretty bulky so squishing two adults in the back next to that is never going to be a fun task! Hertz are also based onsite at MCO which is another plus, I'm hoping for shorter queues than we have seen at Alamo in the past!

Next up... we have booked a night at Hard Rock Hotel! We did this back on our 2016 trip and absolutely loved it!

We have opted to stay on the Monday night of our first week, there is no Halloween Horror Nights scheduled on either the Monday or the Tuesday so it will mean we will be able to get maximum park time without having to deal with early park closing. The main perk of this is of course the express passes, we found these invaluable last time and given that there are limited rides that Charlie can do at Universal it will allow us on and off things pretty quickly and avoid too much queuing!

We found the cheapest price on but after a recommendation on here I booked through at a higher rate with the intention of getting them to price match but then also being able to use Quidco to get some cash back too. This didn't work as planned as the cancellation policy on Travelbag is different to that on so they declined my request (basically they didn't deem it a like-for-like booking). With that we cancelled the original booking and went direct with Travelbag instead (having to forgo the Quidco cash back). It is still working out around £35 cheaper than with other sites so still a better deal. (Although still eye-wateringly expensive, we are paying £291 per room, quite the increase on the £180 we paid back in 2016!).
But you can't put a price on memories eh?! I am so excited to be sitting around that pool again with a hope of another delicious cocktail...

Whilst on the subject of Universal... I decided a couple of weeks back that I would buy the photo package again. We found it pretty inferior to Disney's offering when we bought it on our last trip but we did still manage to collect a considerable amount of photos and given this time there will be a group of us it will be good knowing we can get some nice shots of us all together (plus all the ride photos which are always nice to have to add to the old trip report!). I was all set to pay $89.99 for the 3 day package but then was very happy to stumble across a thread on here a few days back that informed me there was a sale currently on that had the 5 day package on offer at $59.99! we will only be doing 2 days there but great to get it that much cheaper, thank you to The Dibb! SO that is all paid for and ready to go!

I think that covers everything for now. I am still keeping an eagle eye on MDE to see if I can get an earlier slot for our Garden Grill breakfast but no such luck as yet.

Next on the to-do list is ESTAs and park tickets!

Edited at 01:23 PM.
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