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Old 12-29-2012, 09:55 PM   #511
WanderlustNZ
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Quote:
Originally Posted by alicia1506
wanderlust -- we haven't made any firm decisions one way or the other yet, just looking at options.

we have still got our eastern cruise booked but i did email my TA about what our options are for changing if we decide to go down that route.

to be honest, i'm exploring every which way i can think of to get us on a western caribbean cruise in 2014 that coincides with a trip to wdw for star wars weekend that also is doing the itinerary we want... so far, not having much luck unless we stay at wdw for 2 weeks or do a week long stay in nyc in between cruise and wdw... i can make it happen, it just means jiggling some things around

ugh. i have so many spreadsheets and colour coded calendars and what-not all over the place, trying to make things fit the way i need them to... i want a great trip where we see/do all the things we want, but it also needs to flow logically

ahh, the life of a compulsive trip planner
Good luck. I hope you can organise everything so it works in your favour.

Despite the stress, it must be pretty exciting to have 2 holidays in the works. Our Sep/Oct WDW holiday is mainly a treat for me. The payoff for my DH is that during 2014 we will be saving to buy him a classic car from the States and shipping it to NZ for him to do up. So basically 2014 will probably be a year without any overseas travel. I'm already going into cold sweats just thinking about it. I won't know myself without having any holiday to plan and prepare for. I will have to come onto the Disboards and live vicariously through everyone else.
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Old 12-30-2012, 12:18 AM   #512
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For those going....have you worked out your Universal plans and accommodations yet?
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Old 12-30-2012, 12:22 AM   #513
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thinking thinking

so it will cost me
$1400 for 4 nights at universal (acom & tickets)
or
$650 for 4 nights at wdw.......(5 mywhp + dvc)

so I think we may be at wdw for the final 4 days of our trip...but universal def for a day trip or 2......
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Old 12-30-2012, 12:28 AM   #514
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Karen - Is that the RRP quote? Are you considering purchasing an AP for universal for the hotel discount?

I'm thinking of staying 2 nights on site. Not sure how the maths work out yet.
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Old 12-30-2012, 12:31 AM   #515
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PrincessInOz View Post
Karen - Is that the RRP quote? Are you considering purchasing an AP for universal for the hotel discount?

I'm thinking of staying 2 nights on site. Not sure how the maths work out yet.
i was looking at:
1 ust AP plus 1 x 4 day ticket aprox $450-$500
AP discount for ust hotel lowes royal pacific aprox $880
car hire $150
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Old 12-30-2012, 12:55 AM   #516
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PrincessInOz
For those going....have you worked out your Universal plans and accommodations yet?
I ended up buying a Universal Package that included 3 nights accommodation (Garden view Room at HRH), 2 day tickets (non-hopper) and transfers. I priced everything up and the package was only a few dollars (about $8 from memory) cheaper than buying everything separately.

In the end it just seemed quicker and less hassle to book and pay for everything at once. The package included the 'Stay More, Pay Less' discount they always seem to offer, but if there are any drastically better specials closer to the time, I'll think about canceling and rebooking.

I uhmmed and ahed for ages over which Universal hotel to book. In the end HRH won out for small reasons e.g I like the room decor better and I think my husband and son will enjoy the music being played everywhere. Basically, if I see my family having a great time on this trip, I will feel like all my planning has been a success. :-)

I also spent ages trying to decide if we'd get use out of a Park Hopper. I came to the conclusion, with just 2 days and a child in tow, unlikely. It was a reasonable saving to go without.
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Old 12-31-2012, 02:38 AM   #517
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Buying Tickets?

Well the weeks are ticking along and we are getting closer and closer to paying for our flights! We were originally going to book at the end of Feb, but due to work and other engagements are are unable to make it into our Travel Agents until the 2nd week of March. I will have saved up enough money well and truly by then to pay for my flights, but Alicia has informed me that she will struggle a little but to make it by then (She didn't know that flights have to be payed in full 14 days after booking) So we are planning for a re-evaluate in mid Feb to see where we both are on the savings front and if we have to delay booking then were won't be much we can do about it We had a quick chat about cutting down on spending money and things like that, and Alicia has been doing some research and realized that she isn't going to need as much spending money as she thought! Hopefully this helps her reach her savings goal by early March

Which brings me to my question! How does everyone pay for there theme park tickets and tours? We are going to SeaWorld, San Diego Zoo, Disneyland, Universal and Knotts at this stage. I'm trying to figure out if it's going to be easier to pay for each ticket bit by bit as we both have the money, set a date to buy each ticket (e.g, we will be paying for our Annual Passes on the 12th of August ) Or if we set a date a few weeks out from our trip where we sit down and pay for them all at once. I know Alicia will most likely struggle to save throughout this trip and I will need to be her personal cheer squad to keep her motivated so I don't know if setting her target dates will be good motivation to save, or just stress her out. I feel like if we leave it till the last minute to pay for everything, the day to pay will have snuck up on her and she won't have enough saved.

What would you guys do? I know that she is trying really hard, but keeps getting hit with financial burden after financial burden. And I still haven't managed to talk sense into her when it comes to the fact that she needs to skimp a bit now to have an amazing holiday in 9ish months. I am a good saver, I've had it drummed into me since I had pocket money as a kid. So naturally it's frustrating me to be looking from the sidelines and see her wasting her money on things that she doesn't actually need when she's struggling to save as it is.

I've tried talking her into having a "cash allowance" every week for her spending money, and living by the mottot 'once it's gone it's gone!' Then putting any change that she has from that weeks spending money, or any cash that she get's from Birthdays ect into a change jar and cashing it in when the US dollar is high. That's how I saved just under $500 spending money for my last trip (I do a lot of house and baby sitting) But she just doesn't seem to take to the idea. I'm going to make her a shadow box piggy bank for her birthday with some New Zealand change and also some US dollars to get her started on the idea. Once you get used to it the cash adds up really fast!!!

What would you guys do in my situation? It's a sensitive topic to talk about with her (money) so I don't want to lay down the law too much and scare her off. But on the other hand deadlines could be beneficial to her, so long as she realizes that the day is the day and she needs to have the money by then.

GGGGGAAAAAHHHHH! What would you do in this situation?

p.s...Sorry for the longish post.But you guys are the only people I can vent to that will realize my frustration and heartache in the possibility of loosing this trip
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Old 12-31-2012, 09:37 AM   #518
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KiwiMouseGirl, I think you need to put together a payment plan where you organise to book and pay for one thing every week or two e.g buy Disney Tickets this week, then airport transfers a few weeks later etc etc.

While I'm very good at not spending beyond my means, I'm also not a good saver. If I tried to save for a whole holiday before I started booking things, my holidays would never happen. Instead I would see the money accumulating and start justifying more immediate practical uses for it.
To combat that, I usually try to book and pay for at least one or two things a month. I put aside enough money each pay for general living expenses and any that's left over goes towards the holiday.

It sounds like your friend Alicia will need a similar payment plan if you want to get this holiday booked and paid for before you go. Although, I have to say, if it does become a struggle for her to put aside enough for something like a SeaWorld ticket, or a few nights accommodation, in about a 2 week period, then I would seriously question whether or not this trip is something she can afford right now.
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Old 12-31-2012, 02:04 PM   #519
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Regarding paying for theme park tickets. I research what is the best combo of deals for us, but won't purchase until just before we leave ( or in some cases not until once we are in the US).
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Old 12-31-2012, 07:23 PM   #520
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KiwiMouseGirl, I agree with the suggestion of a schedule where you try and see if you can pay off an item at a time every few weeks to break the trip costs up into small bites for your friend but I appreciate how hard it is and if your friend is not a saver/money manager then unfortunately she probably never will be.

My DD is off to Asia for a month with a friend who is like that-my big fear has always been that at the last minute she'll not have enough $ saved and pull out and my DD is so looking forward to it and planned and saved so hard. They have been booking and paying for bits along the way. Luckily being Asia she doesn't need a lot (accom is eg $6/night in a nice backpackers/hostel with ensuite) and if need be my DD will cover some of the accommodation over there and her friend can pay her back once they get home over the next 12 months. Her friend paid for her airfares (brilliant deal on Scoot) with money she was given for her 21st but I don't think she has taken out travel insurance yet which worries me. Its only about 3 weeks to go now so have my fingers crossed it happens-for my DD's sake I will probably offer to lend her friend the cash if it comes down to it (don't get me started on friend's incompetent, self-centred divorced parents). Good luck with your planning-I hope you manage to encourage your friend to be able to do this.
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Old 12-31-2012, 10:40 PM   #521
australiankaren
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budgeting

I am also a "pay it off" kinda girl....
especially for large things like my cruises....so my TA pays $500 a month off for me on my cruise, leaving only a little to pay by the time its due...this time around we are doing 2 cruises that is over 6K, so I'm doing the $500 a month from now...leaving a more manageable balance of around $2500 by the due by date in august....

park tickets, car hire, I buy when i get there
I purchase annual travel insurance to cover my 2 trips in the year
I used TID insurance...promo code of TIDTHANKS get 10% off if you are looking for insurance
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Old 12-31-2012, 10:53 PM   #522
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Is anyone else freaking out about the prices of the flights? Im so worried none if our family & friends wont be able to afford flights at the moment they are still $2k just to LA ! gosh I hope they come down, has anyone here had experience with the specials around this time to give me some hope!
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Old 01-01-2013, 12:27 AM   #523
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Jessie, which airline and class are you looking at flying? Our return flights flying economy with sky couches with air new Zealand are $2500, so without sky couches would be $1800. Quite often travel agencies come out with deals that include flights and so many nights accommodation. So maybe looking at those offers could be an option? Webjet is a good website that shows multiple airlines for comparison. Quite often they have stop over flights available which are a little cheaper, just means more travel time.
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Old 01-01-2013, 05:36 PM   #524
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Jessie, which airline and class are you looking at flying? Our return flights flying economy with sky couches with air new Zealand are $2500, so without sky couches would be $1800. Quite often travel agencies come out with deals that include flights and so many nights accommodation. So maybe looking at those offers could be an option? Webjet is a good website that shows multiple airlines for comparison. Quite often they have stop over flights available which are a little cheaper, just means more travel time.
Thanks for your reply! Unfortunately I have checked both webjet & bestflights and the floghts are still over $2k meanwhile they had return flights to LA for may or june i think for $1200! So crazy they can change so much!
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Old 01-01-2013, 05:43 PM   #525
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Quote:
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Is anyone else freaking out about the prices of the flights? Im so worried none if our family & friends wont be able to afford flights at the moment they are still $2k just to LA ! gosh I hope they come down, has anyone here had experience with the specials around this time to give me some hope!
Rumor has it the good deals for Sept will come out in early - mid Feb. fingers crossed!
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