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Old 25 Aug 19, 10:11 PM  
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caitlinsmummy
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Hi Ho, Hi Ho, It's Back To Disney We Go - Christmas and New Year 2020

Hi and welcome to our Pre-Trip Report!

We have an Instagram and YouTube channel if you'd like to follow along with our adventures:

YouTube: HughesFamilyAdventures
Instagram: Hughesfamilyadventures18


I'll start off with a little about us for those who don't know.

We first went as a family back in October 2018, it was the kid's first trip to Florida. I'd been previously in 2003 with my parents and Mr Grump had been in 1993 with his parents. Mr Grump was adamant it was a once in a lifetime trip, once we've been, we've done it, no need to return haha yeah right who was he kidding!

Before we even left for October 2018 I found an amazing deal with Virgin Holidays for May 2019, 9 nights at Rosen Inn with flights and transfers for just over £300pp. For that price I just couldn't not book it ... I then had to tell Mr Grump what I'd done Luckily he was over the moon as it was such a bargain price. So we returned in May 2019.

As it was more of a budget trip, we planned to just do Universal (we'd upgraded to annual passes for free in November 2018) we then got tickets for Discovery Cove in the Black Friday sales which included, Busch Gardens, Aquatica and SeaWorld too. I found a great deal with 20% off Disney tickets so I booked us one day tickets as a surprise as I just couldn't bear not doing Disney I then booked us one night at CBR. I revealed it to everyone the night we were going to stay at CBR. We had a fab trip and we really enjoyed spending time off site and trying so many different eateries.

When we returned we said we were going to wait until 2021 to return, but after a few months deals got the better of us and we booked up with Virgin again but this time for 19 nights with the free QSDP at Port Orleans Riverside in a Garden View room in May 2020.

Due to Covid-19 this was cancelled on the 5th May We tried to rearrange for September but there was no availability so we cancelled and are awaiting a refund.

We already had a trip planned for 28th December 2020 - 9th January 2021. We had 2 nights at Tampa and 10 nights in a Dibb villa. We planned to just do Universal, Seaworld, Aquatica and Busch Gardens. Due to the cancellation we decided to extend this trip. We now travel 24th December staying 9 nights in a Dibb villa at Emerald Island Resort, then 14 nights at Port Orleans Riverside in a preferred room.

The Cast

So on our trip we have, yours truly, Kelly (32) my husband Chris (34), DD Caitlin (14) DS1 Thomas (11) DS2 Noah (7) This is the ages at time of travel .

This trip is going to be much more relaxed. Having a villa we are planning lots of villa/pool afternoons as well as a more relaxed Disney stay too.



A bit about us:



Myself - (Nervous Wreck) - So I'm the booker, organiser and planner and general all round stress head. I love planning and hate surprises so this is the best of both worlds for me!

By the time we go I will have just handed in my final assignment for my BA Hons in Management degree where I'm hoping for a 1st or 2:1 ... fingers crossed ... these next 8 months are going to be hard! This trip is also partly to celebrate finishing and finally having a full degree! I really enjoy cross stitching, crocheting and socialising.

Excited for: The food and a much more relaxed time.

Chris - (Mr Grump) - He is the laid back one, he goes with the flow and as any hubby should, does as he's told He is no good with organisation and planning so he's happy to leave everything up to me ... let's just hope he doesn't put all the blame on me this time or he may not make it home ! We nick name him Mr Grump as he's always moaning and whinging !

He is a computer engineer and enjoys films and days out walking.

Excited for: A more relaxed time and particularly excited for Clearwater

Caitlin - (Drama Llama) - Total and utter teenager, nick named the drama llama in our house (DL for short!) the world revolves around her and unless anything is to benefit her, she isn't interested She does not like potatoes in any form what so ever ... chips, boiled, roasties ... you get the picture. If she so much as smells potato this is the face she makes



No exaggeration! Now you see where the name DL comes from!

She enjoys going out with her friends, helping me with making Scentsy samples and shopping ... she LOVES shopping. She's hoping to be able to save up lots of money for a good shopping spree when we go again ... but money burns a hole in her pocket so we shall see

Excited for: Pool and waterparks

Thomas - (Cheeky) - He's exactly like his dad, he's so laid back he's almost horizontal. He can have his moments but he is a classic middle child, sometimes we forget he's even there, he's nick named the cheeky monkey as he's too smart for his own good!

He loves anything to do with Pokemon, he loves reading ... to the point we have way too many books as he reads them in a night he also likes writing stories, especially his adventures of Tom series he's started making. My little writer.

Excited for: - The roller coasters, he's a total thrill seeker like mum and dad this one ... he just needs to grow a foot or so more (He's the smallest in his class by about a foot )

Noah - (Sausage) - Noah's the baby ... need I say anymore? He gets away with way more than he should but his little face just melts your heart. Just recently I started calling him my little sausage no idea where it's come from but it's stuck haha.

He's a loving, funny clever little boy. He was diagnosed with Autism in April 2018 and it's been a huge learning curve for us all. We're learning how to assist his needs as best we can as well as seeing how amazing he is in learning how to deal with the difficulties he faces.

Excited for: The rollercoasters and pool

The Plan

Wednesday 23rd December 2020

Leave around 12/1pm and get the train to Kings Cross then to Gatwick. We're hoping to still make use of twilight check in and drop our cases off before heading for some food in the airport. We have a travelodge booked at Gatwick



Thursday 24th December 2020

We've pre-paid for breakfast and it's a short distance to the airport, we will use the shuttle to get to the airport.

Check in around 9.20am and flight is 12.20pm, flying with BA for the first time!

We have booked row 22, seats H, J, K and 23 J, K.

We're flying into Tampa where will collect our car hire from Avis (Mid-Sized SUV) before driving up to Orlando)

When we get checked into the villa it will be unpacking, collecting our parcels from Debbie at Once Upon A Gift and setting up the little Christmas tree we're taking for the kids ready for Santa coming

Friday 25th December 2020

We haven't set any definitive plans but I am trying to sway Mr Grump into Discovery Cove again, one of the main reasons being they only allow a certain amount of bookings, so we know it won't be too crowded. Watch this space ...

Saturday 26th December 2020

Sunday 27th December 2020

Monday 28th December 2020

Tuesday 29th December 2020

Wednesday 30th December 2020

Evening - After dinner drive to Disney Springs, bus to GF or Poly and watch the New Year fireworks from the beach.

Thursday 31st December 2020

Check in to Royal Pacific Hotel at Universal

Morning at Islands of Adventures, back to pool. Citywalk for dinner then spend the evening in Islands of Adventure ... or wherever the fireworks are

Friday 1st January 2021

Day at Universal Studios before heading back to the villa to pack up.

Saturday 2nd January 2021

Check in at Port Orleans Riverside, get unpacked, chill at the pool and maybe evening at Disney Springs.

Sunday 3rd January 2021

Monday 4th January 2021

Tuesday 5th January 2021

Wednesday 6th January 2021

Thursday 7th January 2021

Friday 8th January 2021

Saturday 9th January 2021

Sunday 10th January 2021

Monday 11th January 2021

Tuesday 12th January 2021

Wednesday 13th January 2021

Thursday 14th January 2021

Friday 15th January 2021

Saturday 16th January 2021

Check out of Port Orleans Riverside.

Check in for flight at Tampa - 4.25pm

Flight departs - 7.25pm

Sunday 17th January 2021

Flight lands at 8.25am.

Train to Kings Cross, then home for around 1/2pm.

--------------------------------------------------------------------

We intend to have a much more relaxed holiday this time.

I've told Mr Grump I want to do the resort activities with the kids and spend more time exploring the resorts too which he is happy to do

WE'RE GOING BACK TO FLORIDA!

I will post updates below and try and update the post as they happen

(The first 12 updates were relating to the cancelled May 2020 holiday. Updates relating to December 2020 are from Update 13 onwards )

UPDATE 1 - HRH Upgrade - 29.08.2019

UPDATE 2 - List Of QS Eateries - 03.09.2019

UPDATE 3 - Night at Clearwater Booked - 10.09.2019

UPDATE 4 - Flight Time Change - 18.09.2019

UPDATE 5 - ADR's Decided ... Finally - 25.10.2019

UPDATE 6 - Surprise Stay Booked - 26.10.2019

UPDATE 7 - Uncertainty - Possible Cancellation - 06.11.2019

UPDATE 8 - ADR's Made - 10.11.2019

UPDATE 9 - Clearwater Hotel Changed - 12.01.2020

UPDATE 9 - ESTA Application and FP List Completed - 15.01.2020

UPDATE 10 - New Trip Announcement! - 24.01.2020

UPDATE 11 - Snack List Completed - 26.01.2020

UPDATE 12 - QS, TS, On-Site and Off-Site List Completed - 06.02.2020


UPDATE 13 - New Plans - December 2020 - 05.05.2020

Edited at 09:00 PM.
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Old 26 Aug 19, 12:41 PM  
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arosiem
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Eeeeep! How exciting!
We too have exciting news re the honeymoon - and Iíve decided on doing a full trippie this time!
I need to sit down and do my initial pre trip report xxx
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Old 26 Aug 19, 01:03 PM  
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May again, instead of summer. Back to POR. Sounds like it's going to be a fab trip. I can't wait to hear all about it.
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Old 26 Aug 19, 08:46 PM  
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caitlinsmummy
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Originally Posted by arosiem View Post
Eeeeep! How exciting!
We too have exciting news re the honeymoon - and Iíve decided on doing a full trippie this time!
I need to sit down and do my initial pre trip report xxx
Oh how exciting I am so pleased for you! You'll have to send me the link when you've done it, I'm definitely following along xx

Originally Posted by Goldia View Post
May again, instead of summer. Back to POR. Sounds like it's going to be a fab trip. I can't wait to hear all about it.
I know ... we've changed the date 3 times since the beginning of the weekend!

Mr Grump didn't want August because of the heat and rain. I looked at October but had the wrong school holiday dates meaning the kids would have been off school for 3 weeks which is too long. So we then looked at May incorporating the May Half Term again. I just really hope we don't have a heatwave like last time ... BUT ... if we do at least we don't feel like we have to do EVERYTHING and can have plenty of chill days and afternoons especially with no DDP reservations to tie us down x
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Old 26 Aug 19, 09:15 PM  
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Th1nkT1nk
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Looking forward to following along again
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Old 27 Aug 19, 04:45 PM  
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I think you are getting greedy now

Sounds like a great trip.
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Old 27 Aug 19, 05:23 PM  
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Sounds as if you have the Disney bug Kelly 😂 Hope you have a fab trip
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Old 27 Aug 19, 06:23 PM  
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caitlinsmummy
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Originally Posted by Th1nkT1nk View Post
Looking forward to following along again
Thanks for reading again x

Originally Posted by Milpston View Post
I think you are getting greedy now

Sounds like a great trip.
I blame my dad, he was the same after our first time As Sue says, we have the bug x

Originally Posted by DisneyDaffodil View Post
Sounds as if you have the Disney bug Kelly 😂 Hope you have a fab trip
We certainly do now Sue! Thank you ... hopefully this one will go more smoothly than the last one xx
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Old 28 Aug 19, 07:58 PM  
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Sounds like a great trip you have planned. Itís so addictive this Disney lark! 😂

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Old 28 Aug 19, 08:05 PM  
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Wow - 3 weeks will be amazing and sounds like a great flight price! Canít wait for the pre trip report 😀 - you definitely have the Disney bug!
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