Paying to park when staying overnight at a hotel has long been commonplace in heavily populated areas like downtown Chicago, New York City, or San Francisco. Travelers, though, were able to park their vehicles for free at most other locations, though, adding to the savings of driving to their destination. For my family, it also made the decision to rent a car fairly simple as we preferred the convenience of having our own transportation. It appears, however, free parking for overnight hotel guests is disappearing. Continue reading
The U.S. Transportation Safety Administration (TSA) has been rolling out new rules over the summer at various airports globally as well as domestically. My friends who have been traveling out of Orlando have already been reporting long security lines and we haven’t even hit the holiday travel season yet. At my home airport, Phoenix Sky Harbor, I have yet to notice long lines, but I have noticed some changes to what they are screening in the carry on bags. Here’s what you need to know before your next flight. Continue reading
One question I get asked really often about visiting Walt Disney World Resort® is how to know where to make dining reservations six months out when one doesn’t even know which park they’ll be in that day. What if that park is too crowded? How does one decide? Unfortunately, there’s no hard and fast rule as to which park to visit which day but experienced Walt Disney World Resort® visitors do have a few “tricks of the trade” that are used when putting together an itinerary. Here are a few of mine. Continue reading
“But I don’t want to go to Walt Disney World!”
I’d love to say that no parent has ever heard that, but not only have I heard that, I know of others who have as well. It seems to hit around the Tween/early Teen years. My own son decided that he didn’t want to go to Walt Disney World a couple of years ago – around age 11. He’s also wishy-washy about Disneyland. What’s a Disney-loving parent to do? I’m sharing our tried and true ways to get our Tween (now Teen) to go.
Let him or her bring a friend – If you can afford it and your child has a friend whose parents are agreeable, the Disney Parks for Tweens and Teens are way more fun with a friend to hang out with. I had to face the fact that my child was getting older and hanging out with mom and dad just isn’t cool. OK. By bringing a friend (or sometimes a cool cousin will work), he was able to save his “cool factor,” and show someone around who hadn’t been to the parks as often as he had.
Highlight new attractions – For our son, the biggest draw for our upcoming trip is Pandora – The World of Avatar in Disney’s Animal Kingdom. Since my husband and I have already experienced them, we were able to give a first-hand account of them, but even if we hadn’t, a little research would have told us what we needed to know. Our son is excited to ride Avatar Flight of Passage. He also can’t wait to see the new missions at Mission: SPACE at Epcot. All this finally convinced him that a few days at Walt Disney World Resort®, his parents might not be so bad.
Compromise on time with family – Our son has been staying home alone for a little while now. While I’m not crazy about leaving him alone in a hotel room, we do if we aren’t going to be far or gone a long time. For example, we might let him stay in the room if we’re going to one of the resort’s restaurants for dinner. He’s also been allowed to stay in our room at the Disney’s Beach Club Resort while we were close by at Epcot’s World Showcase. If we’re going further, we got someone from Kids Nite Out to stay with him (we didn’t call it her a babysitter). All of this depends on your child and your comfort level, but we found that our child appreciated time to hang out in the room alone on his phone with friends or playing video games. We are giving him his “me time.”
If all else fails, it might be OK to leave your Tween at home. On a recent trip to Walt Disney World Resort®, we gave our son the option of going or staying with family or friends elsewhere. He chose the family or friends. At first, I wasn’t thrilled about it, but it turned out to be a lovely trip. Yes, I missed my son but having the freedom to focus on my husband (we have no other children) and do what we wanted to do was wonderful, and that’s OK. It’s OK for you to take a trip with another child. Your Tween may be thrilled to have the time with family or friends and your other child or children may love having special time with mom and dad. I found that it also worked well when it came time for the next trip. He didn’t like missing out on what we did; he wanted to go.
For more ideas on what to skip at the Disney Parks,
check out the other great posts from the Blogorail!
Did you dream of having a Disney wedding? Think it’s too late because you’re already married? Well, I have the ultimate way to spend your anniversary and still get your dream Disney wedding – a Disney vow renewal!
I will admit I had dreamed of a Disney wedding. When I got married, however, I just couldn’t bring myself to spend the money on a big wedding. My fiancé (now husband) and I wanted to do things like buy a house and start a family and it just seemed like a big wedding wasn’t the way to spend our money when we were just starting out. Don’t get me wrong. We had a lovely small wedding in Las Vegas with our parents and some Continue reading