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Opening Magic Kingdom

Opening Magic Kingdom

Monday, January 10, 2011

Disney Woe To Disney Wow--The Conclusion

This is the conclusion in a series of posts. To read Part 1, click here.

To read Part 2, click here.

When we returned home from our trip, I sent an e-mail to the e-mail address listed on the card for Walt Disney World Guest Communications. I received an automated reply that someone would be responding to me within 4 days. After a week, I forwarded my original e-mail along with the automated reply indicating that no one had yet been in touch with me. I once again got an automated reply. This time the e-mail indicated that someone would be in contact with me within 7 days.

The husband was skeptical at this point. He thought that my e-mail had entered some corporate black hole and that no one would be getting in touch with me.

I had included our home address, home phone, and cell phone numbers in the e-mail. Surely, someone would be in contact with me soon.

It took a few days, but Marlana from Guest Services did phone. Actually, she phone both home and cell and left messages. When I tried to return her call, I got her voice mail and left a message. It took a couple of days of playing phone tag, but eventually we did connect.

Marlana apologized. She agreed that the level of Disney service that is expected was not present. She said our situation would be used for training purposes. She thanked me for e-mailing, as if this was happening to other guests who weren’t e-mailing, then how would they know to fix the situation. She offered me a Disney gift card. Not a huge amount, but enough to make me feel a little better.

Now that I had Marlana on the phone, I wasn’t going to pass up the opportunity to ask some questions.

1. Are the dining reservations different if our travel professional makes them or I make them? The reason I was asking was that this was the first time I made the dining reservations. Prior to this trip, our travel professional had always made them for us. And, this was the first trip we had experienced any difficulties.

Marlana’s Answer: No. It makes no difference.

2. What should we do if this ever happens again? Should I phone the Disney Dining Reservation number?

Marlana’s Answer: No. The people answering the phone on the reservation number are off site and would only be able to assist with making reservations. She then gave me the phone number of the Disney Switchboard. I envisioned these folks sitting in Cinderella’s Castle, answering phones while overlooking all of Magic Kingdom. Snap out of that day dream, I’m sure the Switchboard operators are no longer in the castle. I promptly programmed the number in my phone. Would you like it too? OK, here it is: 407-824-2222. Yeah, even my travel professional wanted that phone number.

Anyway, Marlana said that if we found that we were running late for our dining reservation, to phone the switchboard and ask for the restaurant’s podium. Then we could notify whoever answered that we would be late. That way, they would know we were still coming.  And, the lesson I took away was either don't be late or make your ADR's for later and come early.

It took about 3 weeks for the gift card to arrive. I started to browse DisneyStore.com to make a selection. A toy? No, the boy really doesn’t need more toys, especially around the holidays. The husband would have liked more pins. I really wanted to get something we would all enjoy.

Then I found it. A set of World of Disney flannel sheets. I decided on a king size set for our bed, as the whole family, including the cat and the dog, ends up there anyway. While I have included a picture of the sheets, it really doesn’t do them justice. There are lots of characters. The boy says, “Which characters are on your side, Mom?” Yep, you can find Mickey, Minnie, Pooh, Tinkerbell, Jiminy Cricket, Marie, Pluto,  Stitch, etc. And between the characters is a light golden scroll--the kind that you might find on a Disney Cruise Ship.

Our "Wow" was the cozy and warm Disney flannel sheets that make us smile and bring us a bit of Disney magic during these cold winter months. Isn’t it amazing what small things can bring great pleasure?

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