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Old 09-30-2010, 09:06 AM   #886
2ofUs
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Thank you! We're going to be on the Platinum plan and we never considered this! We'll call up IPO and make sure that our cards and vouchers are ready to be picked up that morning! Also, I remember you were planning on picking up tickets early on your Premium package, did you run into any problems? Only a bit. We went to the Guest Services outside (right of entrance) Epcot. There was not a problem with early pick-up, but rather that our Premium ressie was not yet available in their system. Again, this could have been complicated because of booking with Disney Travel, but once the CM called POP to confirm we were booked, we were given the passes. It did take 10 minutes though.

I never thought about having them drop us off early. Our guide said it wasn't what she was supposed to do (but then she was hinting for a tip the whole time) but she COULD fill out the forms and have us sign them and just turn them in for us. Worked out fine. We have a reservation for Sammy Duvall's at 10AM and we were afraid that the timing might be tight if the excursion ran late. Thank you for sharing the tip! I had a few questions about your excursion:
1. Were you the only people on board? YES. It is actually just a small motorized boat with a shade cover. There was one swivel seat in the front and two in the back with curved bench seating mid section. Apparently they take only one family or group in each boat.
2. Do you think it's a good idea to take the excursion if you don't have a lot of fishing experience? I have never fished in my life and am a vegetarian. Being catch and release was the only reason I considered doing the tour. My DH caught 5 fish before I got anything and we were sitting side-by-side. Actually, I was reeling in my line thinking my 'shiner' (bait fish) was dead and suddenly the line tugged HARD - I had caught my first fish. After I caught a second, I decided that was an interesting experience, but I was done. I then asked if I could release my bait fish - little guy had been on the line for 5-6 minutes and was still swimming strongly. DH and guide both grined and said 'sure, but it probably won't survive' - didn't matter to me, it was just the gesture that made me feel better. We cut the hook and dropped him back. At first he just swam & looked at the boat then suddenly took off, so here's hopping?

That's unfortunate! Thank you for sharing! It makes the decision to skip the Wishes preferred viewing a lot easier! It is not a bad area for the fireworks and it is NICE to be separated from the 'massive' crowd around the hub. There is seating at tables on the lower patio area, but everyone there moved out and up once the realized the trees would block the view. Standing along the pathway was not bad, but again, if you wish to view the lighting on the castle, I'd find my own spot instead.

Happy belated Birthday! Thanks! I can now draw SS, if only I could afford to quit working ;~}We've honestly never eaten at Hollywood Brown Derby, mostly because it's one of the cheaper 2TS credit meals (less bang for the buck). With all the food that is provided with Premium (and DxDP for that matter) we found ourselves ignoring the prices. It became more about the atmosphere and experience than the food or savings. I never even tried to eat all of anything and DH who normally eats a huge amount (and has the metabolizm of a hummingbird) seldom finished any of the meals.

In 2005 we took friends from Iowa here and they LIVE to eat in nice places on vacations. They ordered the steak but were certain it could not be as good as those served in their home state. SURPRISE! They said it was one of the finest they ever had - even to this day.

If you go and have a choice of servers, ask for Tarik. He began as a food runner and worked his way up to waiter - and a most impressive as you will see if you get to speak with him. He was a registered nurse in his home country and wanted to study here to learn more that might help his people when he returns home. Though he has lived in this country only 3 years and knew no English on arrival, he is quite fluent now. He was very humble and generous. We even asked for and filled out a comment card on him. When he saw it (said it was his first) he was drawn to tears.

I have to say that I remember the names of every wait person we had on this visit - both good and bad - but absolutely do not remember much of what we ate, even though I kept the menus and took pictures of most.
But we're going to try to fit it in during our next Deluxe Dining plan trip and take advantage of the Fantasmic package!

We also had a similar experience at Jiko's. While the food was good, the slow and indifferent service dampened our experience. I don't think we'll be going back anytime soon. One of my biggest disappointments here was in comparing it to our first visit in 2003 when we stayed at AKL. Most of the employees at this resort were acutally from Africa, which added such joy and interest to the entire stay as we visited with and learned from them.

What stood out to me at Jiko was that we were greeted by a young black man from Africa and seated by beautiful, sweet young ladies also black, but not one of the waiters/waitresses were black and most (from reading their name tags as they passed our table) were not from Africa. Perhaps if our original visit had not left such an impression, I would not even have noticed, but I truly missed the joy of feeling as though I were experiencing a culture instead of just a meal.


Thanks again for sharing and I'm glad you had a wonderful trip!

We're going over Winter break and we're hoping the exact opposite, that the temperatures won't be too cold! We'll also be switching our resorts 3 times over 9 days, but I think we'll be leaving most of our luggage in the car during the first two stays.
Enjoy your trip and thanks for all the advice you, too, have been sharing with others.
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Old 10-01-2010, 06:24 AM   #887
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Hello everyone.

For those who have done parasailing, I understand that you don't get wet So no need to wear a swimsuit.

How about personal water craft (jet ski) rental? Do you get wet enough that you need to wear a swimsuit? I don't mind getting my clothes a little wet, but don't want to go around wet the rest of the day or have to go back to the room to change. (Also don't really want to carry extra clothes in my bag.)

Thanks in advance for any advice!

Have a good day!

Kim
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Old 10-01-2010, 04:18 PM   #888
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Originally Posted by 2ofUs View Post
Enjoy your trip and thanks for all the advice you, too, have been sharing with others.
THANK YOU!!!

Quote:
Originally Posted by wdwkimberlee View Post
Hello everyone.

For those who have done parasailing, I understand that you don't get wet So no need to wear a swimsuit.

How about personal water craft (jet ski) rental? Do you get wet enough that you need to wear a swimsuit? I don't mind getting my clothes a little wet, but don't want to go around wet the rest of the day or have to go back to the room to change. (Also don't really want to carry extra clothes in my bag.)

Thanks in advance for any advice!

Have a good day!

Kim
Hi Kim! Having been jet skiing myself and having gotten at least my bottoms wet every time, I would recommend wearing a swimsuit!

Last edited by gibbersome; 10-01-2010 at 04:44 PM.
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Old 10-01-2010, 04:54 PM   #889
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Originally Posted by wdwkimberlee View Post
Hello everyone.

For those who have done parasailing, I understand that you don't get wet So no need to wear a swimsuit.

How about personal water craft (jet ski) rental? Do you get wet enough that you need to wear a swimsuit? I don't mind getting my clothes a little wet, but don't want to go around wet the rest of the day or have to go back to the room to change. (Also don't really want to carry extra clothes in my bag.)

Thanks in advance for any advice!

Have a good day!

Kim
Hi Kim, I think your best bet is a 2-piece bathing suit.
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Old 10-01-2010, 06:26 PM   #890
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Thanks, gibbersome and Matty! I'll definitely figure out a swimsuit to wear while at Sammy's! In 11 days!

2ofus, your trip sounds like it was awesome! So happy your plan went well. I'll be using some of your advice for sure! Thanks so much for posting your results.

And clkelley!Hooray for your trip plans! Thank you for starting this wonderful thread! You've given many disers many happy dreams and planning moments! Including me! Have lots of fun on your on "Premium Plan for One Night" trip!

Kim
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Old 10-03-2010, 09:45 AM   #891
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This is so exciting. I never really read about the premium and platinum plans before. We are going in Dec and I was thinking about going one day early and adding either the Premium package or the Platinum package. What is the difference inthe two plans.

Also, we have AP. Since we have to buy a one day pass for the package, can we use the one day ticket and put that toward our renewal? I thought I remember reading that before. Does this have to be done at Disney or can I do this on line/phone?
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Old 10-04-2010, 11:47 AM   #892
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This is so exciting. I never really read about the premium and platinum plans before. We are going in Dec and I was thinking about going one day early and adding either the Premium package or the Platinum package. What is the difference in the two plans. The Premium plan can be added on when staying at any resort (but not on DVC points); Platinum requires that you be staying in a DELUXE resort. The benefits on Platinum are greater - Wishes/Epcot fireworks cruises, Victoria and Albert dinner, Richard Petty ride-along, etc. On the Disney website you can access and print out brochures on each to compare the benefits. I provided an overview of tours, recreation and extras below. Dining on both plans allows 3 meals (any type and most any place even if they are all 2 TS Signature meals - some restaurants that are NOT on DDP are included such as those at DTD) and 2 Snacks per person per day.

Also, we have AP. Since we have to buy a one day pass for the package, can we use the one day ticket and put that toward our renewal? Yes, that can be done. I thought I remember reading that before. Does this have to be done at Disney or can I do this on line/phone? I believe you can do it by phone, but I'm not POSITIVE - so give it a try and I'm sure they will let you know!
Premium Plan includes:
Tours:
Mickey's Magical Milestones
Disney's Family Magic Tour
Disney's The Magic Behind Our Steam Trains Tour
Disney's Keys to The Kingdom Tour
Disney's Wild By Design Tour
Disney's Backstage Safari Tour
Around the World at Epcot Tour
Behind the Seeds, Greenhouse Tour
The UnDISCOVERed Future World Tour
Simply Segway Experience at Epcot Tour
Disney's Wilderness (Segway) Back Trail Adventure
Recreation:
Golf-18 holes (45 min private lesson PGA pro) at 5 WDW courses:
Magnolia, Oak Trail, Palm, Osprey Ridge, Lake Buena Vista
Guided Fishing Excursions
Water Sports (partial list)
- Parasailing
- Water-skiing
- Wakeboarding and Tubing
- Personal Watercraft Excursions
Watercraft Rentals (Sea Racyer, canoes, pedal bts)
Bicycles
Cane Pole Fishing
Tennis
Horseback Trail Rides
Pony Rides
Carriage Rides - Ft W or Port Orleans
Horse-Drawn Wagon Rides
Miniature Golf
Archery
Extras:
La Nouba Cat 2- blue @ $90 & 3-green @ $75
Children's Activity Centers
Disney's PhotoPass Professional Portraits

Platinum Plan adds:
Tours:
Backstage Magic
Disney's Dolphins in Depth Tour
Epcot DiveQuest Tour
Epcot Seas Aqua Tour
Extras:
La Nouba Cat 1-org @ $111+ 2 & 3
Richard Petty Ride Along Experience
In-Room Child Care
Disney's Photo CD
Dazzling Fireworks Cruise
Fantasmic! Reserved Seating
Spa Treatments
- 50 min Swedish massage
- 50 min Radiance Facial
- Spa manicure/pedicure combo

Hope this helps.
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Old 10-04-2010, 02:45 PM   #893
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Thank you so much for your answer. I can't believe there is so much to do. We have never done any of the water recreation or the tours. This is a great way to do it all. Thanks again for the info. Now to try to figure out if we can get reservations. If not, on my next trip, hopefully in June, I'll have time to try to get the reservations we really want. Thanks again.
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Old 10-04-2010, 04:22 PM   #894
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Try to keep in mind that getting the 'biggest bang for the buck' is not the best way to enjoy these plans. We set our schedule to a pace that allowed travel time from activity to activity, as well as allowing for time to rest and change for dinner.

It was SO HOT and HUMID during our trip (something I didn't count on) that we truly appreciated our down time. We intentionally didn't plan to spend much 'free' time in the theme parks over the 2-day plan, just whatever time was needed to take tours.

You can do evening activities both nights. For night 1 we chose Spirit of Aloha followed by Wishes viewing (my review is above). You could also do HDDR early w/Wishes or have a Signature dinner near Epcot and enjoy the private viewing of Illuminations from there.

Night 2 we enjoyed the 6pm La Nouba followed by a Signature dinner at Jiko. If you have children, you may wish to eat dinner earlier and catch the later (9pm) La Nouba, but either way, it will be a late night so plan a sleep in for the next day.

Also, most tours are in the morning so you pretty much have to decide which is most important to you and do THAT one. Note that MOST tours do not allow younger children so families may do better staying with the recreation activities instead of tours.

AK has 2 tours that could be done in one day: Wild by Design @ 8:30am and Backstage Safari @ 1:00pm. The first provides a light breakfast and you would have a bit of time between the tours to grab QS lunch if needed, but it would be a long day and not good in the heat of summer.

It is also possible to do the 7:30 am Steam Train tour (children 10 or over) and be done in time to get to FW for the 11:30 Segway tour, but you need to plan carefully. The Train tour spends about the last 30 min (or more) in the train station at the front of MK, so if you needed to leave to catch the boat to FW it is easy to do. You have to catch an internal bus to get to Mike's Bike Barn for the tour and must arrive by 11:15 am, so it could take 45+ minutes, meaning you need to be done & at the boat dock by 10:30 at the latest.

Because the FW tour is all outdoors, doing the afternoon tour would be better in months when it is not so hot. We actually made a change from the FW tour to the Epcot tour once we arrived at WDW and realized how hot it was going to be. At least the EP tour trains inside and has the ability to duck into some a/c areas during the tour.

If you enjoy golf, Oak Trail is a 9-hole walking course that is good for families. It is one of 3 golf courses that share a clubhouse by Shades of Green (near Grand Floridian). Magnolia and Palm are the other two. Osprey Ridge is by Fort Wilderness and Lake Buena Vista actually passes through Old Key West Resort. Be sure to utilize the lessons offered by the golf pros. They begin on the hour and last about 45 minutes, but they are only done mornings.

Pole fishing, horseback and pony rides (both by FW), carriage rides (FW and Port Orleans) and bike rentals (several spots including Boardwalk) are also good choices for families.

If you chose to do a Platinum plan, you will be contacted by concierge of your deluxe resort who will assist in putting together an itinerary. For Premium you are on your own, but with several DISboarders having tried this now, I'm sure you'll have lots of advice and assistance.
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Last edited by 2ofUs; 10-04-2010 at 05:00 PM. Reason: corrected information
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Old 10-04-2010, 04:38 PM   #895
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Try to keep in mind that getting the 'biggest bang for the buck' is not the best way to enjoy these plans. We set our schedule to a pace that allowed travel time from activity to activity, as well as allowing for time to rest and change for dinner.

It was SO HOT and HUMID during our trip (something I didn't count on) that we truly appreciated our down time. We intentionally didn't plan to spend much 'free' time in the theme parks over the 2-day plan, just whatever time was needed to take tours.

You can do evening activities both nights. For night 1 we chose Spirit of Aloha followed by Wishes viewing (my review is above). You could also do HDDR early w/Wishes or have a Signature dinner near Epcot and enjoy the private viewing of Illuminations from there.

Night 2 we enjoyed the 6pm La Nouba followed by a Signature dinner at Jiko. If you have children, you may wish to eat dinner earlier and catch the later (9pm) La Nouba, but either way, it will be a late night so plan a sleep in for the next day.

Also, most tours are in the morning so you pretty much have to decide which is most important to you and do THAT one. Note that MOST tours do not allow younger children so families may do better staying with the recreation activities instead of tours.

AK has 2 tours that could be done in one day: Wild by Design @ 8:30am and Backstage Safari @ 1:00pm. The first provides a light breakfast and you would have a bit of time between the tours to grab QS lunch if needed, but it would be a long day and not good in the heat of summer.

It is also possible to do the 7:30 am Steam Train tour (no children under 16) and be done in time to get to FW for the 11:30 Segway tour, but you need to plan carefully. The Train tour spends about the last 30 min (or more) in the train station at the front of MK, so if you needed to leave to catch the boat to FW it is easy to do. You have to catch an internal bus to get to Mike's Bike Barn for the tour and must arrive by 11:15 am, so it could take 45+ minutes, meaning you need to be done & at the boat dock by 10:30 at the latest.

Because the FW tour is all outdoors, doing the afternoon tour would be better in months when it is not so hot. We actually made a change from the FW tour to the Epcot tour once we arrived at WDW and realized how hot it was going to be. At least the EP tour trains inside and has the ability to duck into some a/c areas during the tour.

If you enjoy golf, Oak Trail is a 9-hole walking course that is good for families. It is one of 3 golf courses that share a clubhouse by Shades of Green (near Grand Floridian). Magnolia and Palm are the other two. Osprey Ridge is by Fort Wilderness and Lake Buena Vista actually passes through Old Key West Resort. Be sure to utilize the lessons offered by the golf pros. They begin on the hour and last about 45 minutes, but they are only done mornings.

Pole fishing, horseback and pony rides (both by FW), carriage rides (FW and Port Orleans) and bike rentals (several spots including Boardwalk) are also good choices for families.

If you chose to do a Platinum plan, you will be contacted by concierge of your deluxe resort who will assist in putting together an itinerary. For Premium you are on your own, but with several DISboarders having tried this now, I'm sure you'll have lots of advice and assistance.
I THINK THe Steam tour at MK is 10 and over...Correct? You stated 16 and I am hoping it is still 10 as that is one of the few tours DD11 can do. Was the tour worth the time?
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Old 10-04-2010, 04:57 PM   #896
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Sorry, that my be correct. There were no children on our tour though. Yes, I feel it is worth the time if you have interest in Walt Disney trivia or knowledge and/or if you love trains. It is very informative, but I can see that it would not be much fun for younger ones. You do get to enter the park before anyone else - even those with early ADRs. I actually got to be the first 'ticket' holder through the turnstile that day.

You will ride the train from the station back to the roundhouse where you get off for some 'touring' while the train, usually the Lilly Belle [#2] but she is at a 'spa' right now so it is the Walter E. Disney [#1], goes back to Toon Town to pick up the family of the day and characters to take to the Train Station to open the park.

We transferred onto the Roy O. Disney [#4] and got to see the Roger E. Broggie [#3] that was being serviced. There was actually a problem with the brakes on #4 and we had to sit in the roundhouse for a while. Not sure what we would have experienced if that hadn't happened, but our guide, Jim, was quite the talker so we continued to learn.

As I said earlier, the tour concludes in the train station when Jim sat us down and told stories, answered questions, and handed out our 'pins' for the tour.

Personally, I felt it was worth the time just to be able to enter the park so early. We paid for this tour (didn't do it on the Premium plan) since we were staying at Bay Lake Towers at the end of our trip and could walk over to MK. Getting to this tour on-time could be a bit convoluted if you are not close as you have to arrive by 7:15am. Several guests had used a taxi to insure they were on time.
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Old 10-04-2010, 06:16 PM   #897
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Interesting. We were just wondering this same thing today if we could book two reservations; one for one night on premium, and the other for the rest of the nights.

I haven't gone back and read all 59 (59!!) pages of this thread, but I'll poke around a little more to see what I can learn.
The best way to do it is to book 3 reservations.
1 or more nights prior to plan
1 night on plan
1 or more nights following

This is really the only way to get two full days use out of a 1 night stay. It does mean needing to pay 3 deposits.
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Old 10-05-2010, 08:23 PM   #898
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The best way to do it is to book 3 reservations.
1 or more nights prior to plan
1 night on plan
1 or more nights following

This is really the only way to get two full days use out of a 1 night stay. It does mean needing to pay 3 deposits.
this is what we did. We are going next week.

Day 1:
DH is doing the EPcot Segway tour.
Brunch at GF cafe.
Boating after brunch before we take a rest in the afternoon.
Late Lunch at Fulton's.
La Nouba
Late Supper at Yachtsman.

Day 2:
Breakfast at Kona.
Behind the Seeds at 11:00
Late Lunch Brown Derby
Cali Grill for supper and a fantastic wedding cake made by Chef Brian.

GF is going with us and she needs rest time mid-day as she is a heart patient. Otherwise, I'd be tempted to run us ragged to 'get our money's worth'. And, of course, we ARE getting it anyway.

We are renting a car for these days and one more. Disney buses would be too hard to do all this and we will go grocery shopping the third day so we can eat the rest of the week after our Dining Plan expires.
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Old 10-05-2010, 09:36 PM   #899
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Looks good but you have to many meals for the plan.. you only get 3 meals for one night.

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Old 10-05-2010, 09:39 PM   #900
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Looks good but you have to many meals for the plan.. you only get 3 meals for one night.

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you tawkin to me?

We get 3 meals per person for the night...and as DH and i always share our food, we'll be spreading them over the 2 days. It really works out perfectly for us as what we always order is app, entree and dessert.
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