Hey guys! It has been a hot minute since I’ve written and I was considering writing about my favorite things that have happened, Hurricane Ride Out Crew, food and wine, or the halloween party… then I realized most of these things happened when my parents came to visit. I will still probably write about all these things in more detail but I thought I would share my tips for when family comes to visit! 🙂
My parents decided to come the weekend of the September 15th which gave us plenty to do and fortunately for us with Hurricane Irma MANY open rooms and reservations. Use your cast discount to your advantage!! You can go through the hub and get an idea of what hotel you may want but I never really have much luck looking through and finding an open hotel room–calling the reservation number is THE way to go! My family and I got a room over at Riverside, not just any room but a deluxe room (with the REALLY cool headboards).
We decided to get the dining plan (the “basic” one) which includes: 1 refillable resort mug, 1 table service, 1 quick service, and 2 snacks “per day” per person (per night that you are staying). I say “per day” because these meals are actually a lump sum, you can spend any and all of your meals or snacks at ANY time. I suggest booking reservations for all the table service and have an idea of when you want to use the quick service. We stayed 3 nights for 3 people, so our dining plan looked like 9 quick, 9 table, and 18 snacks to begin. This may not sound like a lot enough food but trust me, it is. This is how we spent our dining plan:
|day 1||meals used||location|
|3 quick service||dinner at the resort|
|3 mugs||at the resort|
|3 table service||adventure breakfast on the boardwalk|
|10 snacks||EPCOT food and wine|
|3 table service||dinner at Be Our Guest|
|2 snacks||treats at Mickey’s Not So Scary Halloween Party|
|2 snacks||pastries at the resort|
|3 quick service||hollywood studios|
|4 snack||drinks and ice cream in animal kingdom|
|3 quick service||the polite pig in Disney Springs|
|2 snacks||starbucks in Disney Springs|
|3 table service||Lunch at Sanna|
if you have some idea of how you want to use your dining plan it is easy to use, DO NOT feel stressed about using snacks or meals! You got the dining plan to help you, so let it! If you’re not sure of what you can get on the menu with the dining plan, ask your servers they will be glad to assist. Also, you may have noticed I said our hotel reservation was for 3 nights, your dining plan expires at midnight of the day you check out– so feel free to make that last reservation to use your last meals! 🙂
I am sure everyone has that member of the family that is hardly ever in the pictures, for us it WAS my mom, but in recent years I have taken that place so we decided to get memory maker. I was especially excited about this because it would allow me to continue to use this for about 3 weeks after they left SOO MANY PICTURES!! Though the photo pass cast members will take pictures with your phone, I always feel guilty to have them do so.
My mom chose an EXCELLENT time to come to Disney, with the Food and Wine Fest and Mickey’s not so scary going on we had a lot to pack into the 3 days. I went to company D before they got here and got halloween party tickets with the discount in addition to linking the tickets to the accounts I set up for them. (The magic bands they were sent in the mail worked AMAZINGLY, meaning I checked in and they were set, all tickets there and they got in the room without having to go to the front desk).
I also decided to hit up Cast Connection and create a little care package for my parents
I got them: luggage tags (which they put to use right away actually). Anniversary buttons (because technically this was an anniversary trip–30 years!). The magic band key chains incase they didn’t want to wear them (the bracelets ended up not being a big deal to them, but the keychains were 3 bucks a piece at cast connection. I got the bride groom mugs, my dad’s fav protein bars, I made my mom a pair of ears to match me, and last and most importantly I contacted an Etsy shop to help me create these DCP Parent car stickers. I wasn’t sure the stickers were going to make it in time because I ordered them just days before Irma.