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Unread 21 Feb 19, 06:16 AM  
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Join Date: Jan 06
... and Then There Were 3, Orlando Feb 2019 - Pre Travel Day - Premier Inn Gatwick North & Thyme Res

After an almost sleepless night, I was up, showered and dressed in this hoody by 6 am. The top was my holiday present to myself on our very 1st visit in 1998. It was only when we returned home that I realised that a bright turquoise fleece adorned with the 7 dwarves was suitable attire for just about nothing, so it was consigned to the back of the cupboard. Despite going on every WDW trip since, we have seldom had the weather to use it, so I was determined that, this time, after more than 20 years, it would get some use!

By 8 am DH & I we're sitting in Aldi car park waiting for them to open. 76 later we had filled the fridge and freezer with enough ready meals, pizzas and microwave burgers to keep DS Dan and DD Nic fed for a fortnight whilst we're away. We also picked up a couple of bags of toffees for the journey.

DD Chloe had a hairdressers appointment at 9.45 so we weren't going anywhere before that. I also had to nip into work to return my boss's keys and update him on what had been happening during his absence.

Once back from the hairdressers DD Chloe amused herself and killed some time by trying to teach me how to use Snapchat filters and rewatching the Seaworld parks planning DVD.

We waited for DD Nic to return from her driving lesson at 11.30 and then said our goodbyes to her and Dan before finally setting off on our journey.

The sat nav was predicting a journey time of just under 3hrs and 175 miles. However as we approached the M1 the arrival time was creeping up and up. It soon became obvious that there were major delays on the motorway. So when the sat nav suggested re-routing via the M40 we decided to go for it.

The journey went smoothly from then on, even the M25 (which DH had been dreading wasn't too congested). With a quick toilet break at the services we pulled into the car park at 3pm. The diversion had added approx 20 miles to our journey but was well worth it to keep moving.

Having pre-paid for parking, the car park barrier automatically recognised our reg number and issued our ticket. Once we'd found a suitable space I made sure to write our location (zone Z, row 9) on the back of the ticket (this might seem the obvious thing to do to most people but having once failed to make a note of it when flying from EMA to Spain, we lost the car in the airport car park - NOT what you'd wish for at the end of a holiday!)

We hopped on the shuttle bus to the North Terminal and were soon at the Premier Inn which is just across the road from the terminal building.

I had already checked in online so we used the self serve terminals to collect our room keys. The terminal also print out your voucher for the meal deal so we went straight to the podium and reserved our table for dinner. The Thyme restaurant doesn't open till 5.30 and as we were all feeling hungry by now we chose the earliest slot available.

We found our room in the 7th floor with a view over the internal court yard and made ourselves at home.

The room was pretty standard Premier Inn stuff with a double bed and a sofa which had been converted into a single. It was clean and comfortable with all the amenities that we required for a one night stay.

There were copies of the menu in the room so we busied ourselves deciding what to have for dinner.

It was soon time to go down to eat and we were very glad that we'd booked our table as there was already a queue at the podium and the restaurant was very busy.

DD decided to eat from the children's menu.

We had to pay for her meal in addition to what we'd already paid for the meal deal but the kids meals are only 5.50 for 2 courses.

She chose the garlic & cheese flatbread for starters and had the tomato pasta with chicken meatballs for her main. It also came with a drink so she had a black currant Fruit Shoot.

She enjoyed the flatbread but she only got 2 fairly small slices which wasn't enough so she ended up sharing some of DH's. She thought the pasta was lovely but the meatballs were a bit bland and tasteless and she only managed 2 of them.

DH also had the cheesy garlic flatbread to start but the adult portion was fortunately much more generous. I had the lamb koftas which I really enjoyed. The menu describes them as lightly spiced but I found them quite hot and was glad of the cool dip that is served with them.

Our meal also came with a drink included. DH had a pint of lager shandy. I chose a glass of rose which was pleasant but quite sweet.

For mains, I had the surf and turf. Which was very nice and swapped my fries for sweet potato fries.

DH had the mixed grill which wasn't huge but he said it was sufficient. Hidden under the egg is steak, gammon, chicken and a sausage.

Both our main courses incurred a 2 surcharge which I don't recall being mentioned on the menu!

We had the option to add a dessert for an additional 2. DH and I shared the Ultimate Chocolate Brownie Sundae which was delicious.

DD had the vanilla ice cream with caramel sauce. She had the one off the adult menu as it was a larger portion than the children's one but the same price.

We all enjoyed our meal at Thyme restaurant and felt that over all it was pretty good value. The staff were efficient and friendly despite the fact that they were very busy.

Hunger satisfied, we settled our bill for the additional items (including a second glass of wine!) and returned to the room.

We watched TV for a while and DD came in our bed for a cuddle - where she promptly fell asleep! Rather than disturb her or have an uncomfortable night, DH moved into her bed and by 9pm we were all fast asleep.

At around midnight, DH and I were both rudely awoken by a phone ringing in the room. It was one of DD's school friends attempting to start a group chat. After a few choice words regarding what 11 year olds were still up at that time of night playing on their phones, we both settled off again - DD slept through the whole thing!

Tomorrow Orlando...

Travel Day is here:- https://www.thedibb.co.uk/forums/sho... php?t=1117403

Edited at 11:53 AM.
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Unread 21 Feb 19, 08:25 AM  
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Unread 18 Jun 19, 10:46 AM  
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Great pre travel day. Look forward to reading the rest.
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Unread 2 Jul 19, 08:26 PM  
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Great relaxed pre travel day! I love the excitement and anticipation it brings!
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