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Opening Magic Kingdom

Opening Magic Kingdom

Thursday, May 2, 2013

Happily Helping Others Plan Their Disney Vacation

Like other Disney fans, it is hard for me to disguise my passion for all things Disney which means friends, neighbors, family, and colleagues are aware of my status as a Disney fan.  This also means I get asked questions when folks are planning a Disney vacation.  The questions come via phone, email, or in person.  Yesterday was no exception.  Here’s the email that landed in my inbox:

We want to eat supper at 1900 Park Fare, it is at a resort, but we are spending the day at the Magic Kingdom, can we do that?  Do we need a park hopper for that?  What if afterwards we want to go back to the MK to see the firework?  Can we do that?
We have our park tickets, plane tickets, and hotel taken care of.  I have made 3 dinner reservations.  Any suggestions?

Here was my reply:

To:  Recipient

How exciting!

Yes, you can go to 1900 Park Fare, located in the Grand Floridian, for dinner from the Magic Kingdom.  Just hop on the Resort Monorail--it will be the last stop.

No, you do not need park hopper to return to the same park later in the day that you left earlier that day.

Yes, you can return to watch Wishes, the fireworks show at the magic Kingdom, just hop back on the monorail.  Magic Kingdom will be your first stop!

Dinner. . . 'Ohana's at the Polynesian is our favorite.  Chef Mickey's at the Contemporary is another great dinner.  And, any restaurant at EPCOT is a good choice.

Let me know if you need anything else.  Happy to help you plan a magical vacation!

And, truly I am happy to help them plan and have a magical vacation.  It brings me great joy to know someone else will be experiencing the magic that only Disney can provide.

And, it is the detail questions like the ones above that cannot be answered by reading a brochure from Disney.  Reading a Disney guidebook will possibly answer the questions, but being able to ask someone who has “been there, done that” is the easiest way to get questions answered.

I could have gone on about 1900 Park Fare dinner—the dancing, Cinderella, Prince Charming, etc.  But I didn’t as those questions weren’t asked. . . yet.  And, they may already know about the royal dinner without a castle which helped them pick that restaurant.  Giving them more details may not have been what was needed at the moment and potentially overwhelming.   I could have, however, given them confirmation that they made a good choice—next time.


  1. I know you recently talked about the photo packages on cruises on here, but I can't seem to find it. Can you give some details on the photo packages onboard? And how it works when traveling with family members in 2 other rooms (ie, would we be able to get pictures taken together, and if so, who's "account" do they get put on?)? We sail in less than a month on the Fantasy, and I'm having trouble finding much info on the onboard Shutters!


    1. Congratulations on your upcoming cruise!

      Photo packages on board tend to vary by ship, itinerary, and time of year (more discounts later in the year), but here is a post about packages found on the Disney Dream: http://toddjodybrent.blogspot.com/2011/08/shutters-on-disney-dream.html

      Now, when traveling with family members in 2 other rooms, it gets a little tricky, especially when purchasing a photo CD as it includes photos assigned to a specific stateroom via your Key to the World card. Your best bet would be to make sure that when photos are taken, you scan the same Key to the World card each time regardless of who is in the photo. This would electronically "assign" all the photos to that stateroom and then to a CD if purchased.

      The Shutters staff is very helpful. I try to find them the first night of our cruise and get all transactions out of the way as the place can get incredibly busy later in the cruise.

      All Photo CD's are picked up on the last morning before you leave the ship.

      Hope this helps. Have a magical cruise!