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Old 22 Feb 19, 08:44 PM  
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GALE88
slightly serious Dibber
 
Join Date: Jun 16
Location: Suffolk
The Lane Family's Second Visit

Not a very catchy title, but nevermind!

Hello, we are the Lane family and this is our second trip to WDW. Our first trip in 2017 was meant to be a once in a lifetime holiday… Well I’m sure I’m not the first person to be going back for a second once in a lifetime trip!


In 2017 we booked through Tui and had two weeks staying in the cabins at Fort Wilderness. I later added one night at HRH. We had a fab time and did so many amazing things and made so many happy memories. However, I did leave feeling a little like we had only scratched the surface. We hadn’t seen enough of Universal and, even though we overdid it at times, there was so much of Disney we hadn’t experienced.
When we got home we decided to be sensible, we weren’t going back we’d do ‘grownup’ things instead like buying a new bathroom and replacing the double glazing. That lasted a few months and I got as far as buying a new fridge when I got tired of adulting and I started ‘just looking’ on The Dibb and ‘just wondering’ when free dining would come out. All theoretical of course. With my 40th looming in 2019 I did want an exciting trip to look forward to. I thought about New York and Iceland and a little bit about Disney… By April I’d decided that we were definitely going so I began obsessively checking and, when free dining did come out, I booked straight away. Somehow I’d planned the entire holiday whilst supposedly being ‘sensible’ and ‘saving up for a new bathroom’ and definitely not going to Disney.
The bathroom still looks something like this, but we’ll deal with this some other time!


Accommodation:
After Fort Wilderness being such a vast resort I’ve gone for POFQ this time. I like the idea of it being so compact and easy to get to everything, and the boat ride to Disney Springs sounds fab. I’ve also booked 3 nights at HRH. At the time of booking I thought this would be plenty but the kids’ obsession with Harry Potter only seems to be increasing, and may encroach on my sitting by the pool with a cocktail time. I really wish we could have a full week here!
Whilst waiting for flights to come out I read some of Wizzo’s trip reports. His trips always sound so fab and they always seem to have an amazing time staying at St Pete Beach. DH isn’t supposed to be away from work for 3 weekends in a row (retail), but if I made sure we didn’t go for a full three weeks I could add a couple of days staying at the beach.
I’ve also booked the Premier Inn at Gatwick for the night before, this was £64 for the four of us including breakfast, which I thought was reasonable. We’ve nearly missed a flight before due to traffic so this is a must for us.
Since our last visit we have a new addition to the family. This is Salem, he likes to destroy cardboard boxes!

So the last lot of accommodation I’ve booked is the cat into cat prison, aka the fab cattery, near us. He will not be impressed.

Flights:
I decided we would aim to fly to Tampa as this would fit with the beach stay and might also be cheaper. When BA released their flights I was rather taken aback with the prices, where were all these cheap deals Dibbers speak of? After a few weeks of searching I found that if we flew indirect on the return everything became a lot cheaper. I booked a package with BA that includes flights out LGW – TPA and return TPA – MIA – LHR, car hire and two nights at the Grand Plaza Hotel at Saint Pete Beach. I was happy with the price as it was less than I had budgeted for flights alone. We will have to get a taxi to and from the airport instead of leaving the car, but to be honest I’m pleased to not have to worry about driving home after a long flight.
Slightly irritating is that BA have so far changed the flight times twice for our outbound flight meaning we arrive in Tampa a few hours later than originally booked, and once so far for the MIA – LHR leg. We now have a 5 hour stopover in MIA, increased from 4 hours. I’m not overly pleased with this but it seems like BA make a habit of changing their flight times so we’ll wait and see if there are any further changes. I may phone and ask if there are any alternatives or we might just put up with it. I’ve never flown indirect before so this is a bit of an experiment for us.

Tickets:
A few weeks ago I bought our Universal tickets, the kids are obsessed with Harry Potter at the moment and are really excited that the new Hagrid ride will be open when we go. I hope that at least this will be available during early opening if not with express passes. I’ll have to read up and make a plan of how we get on this with minimal queueing.
I’ve bought MNSSHP tickets for our last night. We did this on our last night in 2017 and had a really great time. I wasn’t sure whether to repeat it or not, sometimes repeating things doesn’t pan out as well as the first time and I did wonder whether doing the Star Wars Dessert party might be something different to try. Well I was outvoted by the rest of the family so tickets have been purchased.


Here is our basic itinerary. I’ll add more detail at a later date:
  • Saturday 10th – Taxi down to Premier Inn at Gatwick North Terminal
  • Sunday 11th – Fly to Tampa, stay at Saint Pete beach
  • Monday 12th – Relax!
  • Tuesday 13th – Drive to Orlando and check in to HRH. Kids go Harry Potter crazy!
  • Friday 16th – Leave HRH and check in to POFQ for 12 nights.
  • Tuesday 27th - MNSSHP
  • Wednesday 28th – Fly home

Things I need to do:
ESTAs once DD’s new passport arrives – hopefully within the next week or so.
A dolphin watching boat ride whilst we’re at the coast.
Get quotes and book taxis to and from airport.
Change some £ to $. I think I’m going to do some before and some after Brexit.
Go on miracle diet and buy whole new wardrobe!

ADR day has been and gone. I’m more or less happy with everything I’ve got:
  • Day 1: Garden Grill 8.25am (I wanted 8.00, so I’m checking every day in case one comes up.)
  • Day 2: Raglan Road 7.30pm
  • Day 3: Sci-Fi Dine in Theatre 5.15pm
  • Day4: Homecomin’ 7.15pm
  • Day 5: Rainforest Café in AK 6pm
  • Day 6: Crystal Palace 8.00am
  • Day 7: Garden Grill breakfast 8.00am (I booked this because I couldn’t get an 8.00am one on day 1. I’ve also got Restaurant Marrakesh booked for 6pm because this is supposed to be our Epcot evening strolling round the world. I’ll need to change something here.)
  • Day 8: Ohana 8.50am
  • Day 9: Cali Grill brunch 11.10am
  • Day 10: Storybook Dining 7.30pm
  • Day 11: Tony’s Town Square 2.00pm (before MNSSHP)

I’ve got a while to go before FP day. I’ve more or less finalised our park days for Disney but I need to work out which rides to FP. I also need to make a plan for Universal once opening hours are out and we know what the deal is with the Hagrid ride.
I also have the small matter of starting my MBA in May (on May the 4th! ) so I'll need to get as much as possible organised before that, as life is about to get a whole lot more busy!
__________________
2017 The Cabins at Fort Wilderness and HRH
2019 HRH and POFQ
2022 Early stages planning: NYC plus HRH then beach?

Edited at 08:47 PM.
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Old 22 Feb 19, 10:37 PM  
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Devojcica25
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Sounds fab happy planning... and yes you are not alone with second third fourtoetc in a lifetime holiday. Orlando is our favourite place on earth
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Old 22 Feb 19, 11:22 PM  
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Kat11
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What a fab trip you have planned. Looking forward to following along.

Kat 😀
__________________
DLP: Hotel New York-2008 & Hotel Cheyenne-2013
WDW: Villa - April 2011 & Villa - April 2014
WDW Onsite: OKW! - 1 Bed Villa October 2016
WDW Onsite: OKW! - 2 Bed Villa October 2018
WDW onsite: HRH/POFQ - October 2019
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Old 23 Feb 19, 06:42 PM  
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GALE88
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slightly serious Dibber
 
Join Date: Jun 16
Location: Suffolk
Originally Posted by Devojcica25 View Post
Sounds fab happy planning... and yes you are not alone with second third fourtoetc in a lifetime holiday. Orlando is our favourite place on earth
I already have secret plans for our third once in a lifetime trip in 2021
__________________
2017 The Cabins at Fort Wilderness and HRH
2019 HRH and POFQ
2022 Early stages planning: NYC plus HRH then beach?
GALE88 is online now Girl Mouse Click to view Members Trip Plans Add Member to Ignore List
Old 23 Feb 19, 06:43 PM  
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#5
GALE88
Thread Starter
slightly serious Dibber
 
Join Date: Jun 16
Location: Suffolk
Originally Posted by Kat11 View Post
What a fab trip you have planned. Looking forward to following along.

Kat 😀
Thank you, I'm really looking forward to it.
__________________
2017 The Cabins at Fort Wilderness and HRH
2019 HRH and POFQ
2022 Early stages planning: NYC plus HRH then beach?
GALE88 is online now Girl Mouse Click to view Members Trip Plans Add Member to Ignore List
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