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  1. Hotel Information & Advice Staying at our group Disney resorts (or another Disney resort) You'll be able to reserve your FastPass times 60 days in advance. Buses (and the new Skyliner - if it's running by then) will transport you around Disney property relatively frequently throughout the day. Both of our group resorts (Pop Century and Caribbean Beach) are Skyliner Resorts. The newly added All-Star Sports is not a Skyliner Resort. No parking fee at the parks (saving you $25 per day). Although Disney is now charging for overnight parking at the resorts ($13 per night at Pop Century, $19 per night at Caribbean Beach), our group is exempt from that fee through 2019. (If you stay outside of the group block, you'll have to pay the fee.) You're right in the middle of the magic, and Disney does "magic" very well. You're able to visit Disney's parks during extra magic hours. You'll have free Magical Express transportation to and from the Orlando airport. You'll get the MagicBands (if that's important to you). Value resorts (Pop Century and All-Star Sports) are louder in noise level and theming than a moderate resort, less spread out, and rooms are smaller (beds are queen size now, one is murphy-style and can be stored during the day). Moderate resorts (Caribbean Beach) are quieter in noise level and theming than a value resort, more spread out, and rooms are a little bigger than the value resorts (two queen beds, some rooms sleep 5 with an additional small murphy bed). Staying off-property You won't be able to reserve your FastPass times until 30 days in advance. Depending on hotel, an off-property hotel will probably be less expensive for what you get. Depending on hotel, they may have bigger rooms than Disney resorts for the price, and many can accommodate more than four less expensively. Some hotels offer free breakfast (of varying quality). They're not usually themed as well as Disney's resorts, and it may not feel like you're part of the "magic." They may not have the same level of customer service as Disney resorts (Disney is hard to match in that respect). You most likely won't be able to participate in Disney's Extra Magic Hours. You may feel disconnected from the group. If driving to the parks, parking will be an extra $25 per day. If you don't have a car, transportation to the Disney parks won't be as convenient. Even if your hotel offers a shuttle, it may go only to the parks (not to Disney Springs or other Disney areas). And it'll almost certainly be less frequent, with longer wait times than Disney transportation. To make it worse, hotels often share shuttles, making many lengthy stops along the way. Many travelers end up unexpectedly renting a car due to the inconvenience and hassle, so factor the price of a rental car into your budget. My advice... Choose the accommodations that best fit your needs and budget - a Disney resort, off-site hotel, timeshare, rental, campground, whatever. If you won't have your own car and don't want to rent one, a Disney resort will most likely be your best bet. The extra money you'll spend will be offset by no parking fees (currently $25 per day at the parks), and much better transportation options (more convenient, frequent, and less time-consuming than off-site hotels, regardless of what the off-site hotels advertise - trust me on this). If you'll have a car and want to be in the middle of the magic, choose a Disney resort (Disney does "magic" very well). If you have a camper, consider Disney’s Fort Wilderness campground (but use your own transportation to get to the parks - the Fort Wilderness bus system is slow and cumbersome). If you're on a tight budget, will have a car, and don't mind being more removed from the magic, choose an off-site hotel near Disney property that offers a good free breakfast at the hotel (saves money and time). If you have a camper, consider an off-site campground. Don't buy into the myth that you'll spend all your time traveling to parks if you don't stay at a Disney resort. The Disney parks, resorts, water parks, and Disney Springs (formerly Downtown Disney) are spread out over miles. Even guests who stay at Disney's resorts have to drive to get to the different areas (or use Disney transportation). Many off-site hotels are located near Disney property (or even inside Disney property in the Disney Springs area), so you probably won't have to drive much farther than we will. Choose whatever is best for your family's budget and preferences. You'll have a great time regardless of where you stay. November 16-November 23 Room Rates Pop Century Standard – $109.35 (most room nights full, can't get more) Pop Century Preferred – $139.75 (most rooms nights full, can't get more) All-Star Sports Standard -- @ $110.32 Caribbean Beach Standard -- $184.28 (most rooms nights full, can't get more) Caribbean Beach Standard (5-person rooms) – $216.00 (most room nights full, can't get more) NOTE: If most nights are full at our group discount, you can still get some nights at the group discounted rate, and other nights at the regular rate. NOTE: In 5-person rooms, there's a small murphy bed (approximately 5 feet x 3 feet) that accommodates the 5th person (under the age of 9). If you need a room for 5, reserve as soon as possible. They tend to go fast. Disney Resort Parking Fee & Parks Parking Fee Disney recently started charging for parking at their resorts. If you're staying with our group in one of our group resorts you won't have to pay this fee in November. Beginning in 2020, they won't be able to waive this fee for us. Disney increased their parking fee at the parks to $25 per day. If you hop parks, this fee covers all the parks you visit that day. If you stay at a Disney Resort, this fee is waived. Disney Springs Area Resorts The seven Disney Springs Area Resorts will have the 60-day advance FastPass reservation benefit, and the Extra Magic Hours benefit through December 31, 2019. How do I reserve our room at one of the group resorts? I'll send you the information you need to reserve rooms at either of our group resorts after I receive your payment. You won't be able to reserve your room until after I receive your payment. (I expect to run out of rooms this year and we won't be able to get more, so rooms are first-paid, first-served. Any reservations made before you pay for your tickets will be cancelled.) Am I required to reserve a room at one of the group resorts or stay on Disney property to get your tickets? No, you can stay wherever you want. Can my family of 6 stay in one room at one of the group resorts instead of getting two rooms? Sometimes they'll let larger families stay in one room at moderate resorts, depending on the ages of the children. You'll need to talk to them when you call to reserve. Can we stay extra nights? Our group stay is November 16-23, so our group block is during that time. We don't have any extra nights available prior to November 16, but you can book one extra night at the end of the trip at Caribbean Beach, and two extra nights at Pop Century. Disney hotels have sold out the past couple of years (due to construction and refurbishment), so we haven't had as much luck getting more rooms on either side of our dates (other than the extra nights already blocked). We've also had more problems adding rooms to our block once we've sold out. So if you want a group room, register early and hopefully you'll be able to get what you want. Disney Trip Description & Registration link: http://www.travelinghomeschoolers.com/disney-world/
  2. It looks like someone cancelled their Pop Century reservation for preferred rooms. We have more nights available now (all but Sunday and Monday - you'd have to pay regular rate for those), so if you've already registered and paid - call to see if you can snap up those rooms! Warmly, Dianna
  3. I'm flying into Orlando International Airport. How do I get to Disney World? If you're staying at a Disney Resort, you can use Disney's Magical Express. There's no extra cost. Here's the link: https://disneyworld.disney.go.com/guest-services/magical-express/ If you're not staying at a Disney Resort, or prefer different options, here are alternatives: https://disneyworld.disney.go.com/faq/transportation/airport-transportation/ I'm staying at a Disney Resort, but won't have a car at Disney. How do I get around during the day? Disney provides transportation to the parks, water parks, and Disney Springs (used to be called Downtown Disney) during times they're open to the public. Here's more information: https://disneyworld.disney.go.com/guest-services/resort-transportation/ I'm staying at a Disney Resort and want to do your private breakfasts. Does Disney transportation run that early? Disney can't guarantee transportation that early. Ask Guest Services at your hotel what your transportation options are that day so you'll know whether you have to arrange your own (Uber, Lyft, taxi, etc.). Also, Disney's "Minnie Van" service has a partnership with Lyft. See more info here: https://disneyworld.disney.go.com/guest-services/minnie-van-service/ Have more questions about transportation? Post them here and I'll add them to our FAQs.
  4. What are the dates for the fall 2019 trip? Our group dates are November 16-23. When is the registration deadline? Do I have to pay by July 31 or August 31? Does my payment have to be postmarked by July 31 or August 31? If you want to reserve FastPasses in advance (60 days in advance for Disney resort guests; 30 days in advance for off-property guests), you must register (not pay) by July 31. If you don't want or need to reserve your FastPasses in advance, you must register (not pay) by August 31. Regardless of the registration deadline you choose, I must receive your payment within 7 days of my confirmation email to you. Do you ever run out of tickets? Should I register early? We never run out of tickets, but we can (and do) run out of spots for special events and group rooms. If you register early, you'll have a better chance of getting the special meals/events and room preferences you want. Do I have to pay in full upfront? Do you have a payment plan? Full payment for tickets and optional group events is due within 7 days of the day I confirm your registration. Please wait until you're able to pay in full before you register. We won't run out of tickets, but may run out of spots at our optional group events and group resorts, so register as soon as you you're able to pay for the best chance of getting everything you want, and for getting a discount room at one of our resorts. If you stay at a group resort, you'll pay Disney for that separately and can make payments. (You won't be able to reserve a room until you've registered and paid for your tickets. Any room reservations made before making payment will be cancelled.) What payment methods do you accept? I accept: Personal checks Bank checks BillPay checks (not PopMoney) through your bank Zelle online transfers through your bank I can't accept: Money orders (they're getting more difficult to deposit electronically, and if they get lost in the mail, you'll have a difficult time getting a refund for them) Credit cards PayPal Disney gift cards for tickets or special events, Disney accepts them (and reward points) for group rooms. They said that you have to reserve your room with a credit card, and it will be charged one night's deposit. However, when you arrive, you can apply your rewards points/gift cards to pay for the stay and get a refund on your original credit card for the first night. Other payment methods not listed above Can I call Disney directly and reserve all of this? No, you'll have to get your tickets and reserve optional group events through me. If you want to stay at one of our group resorts, I'll give you our group contact information to reserve your room after I receive your payment. Can you give me an estimate? I can't give you an estimate because each family wants different things. There are no hidden charges - what you see is what you get. All prices include tax. Ticket prices are listed on my main Disney page ($378 - the same as our spring trip). One educational program and the DinoLand Private Event are included in your ticket. So start with the price of your ticket, then add: Optional Extras Living Seas & Soarin’ Breakfast - add $34 per person, ages 3 and up Pandora Breakfast - add $50 per person, ages 3 and up Fantasmic Dinner Party - add $57 per person, ages 3 and up Epcot Dessert Party - add $25 per person, ages 3 and up If you choose one of the Visual Arts educational programs, there's an extra $20 per person (adults and students) materials fee. Optional Group Hotels (you'll pay for this separately through Disney) Pop Century Standard – $109.35 Pop Century Preferred – $139.75 All-Star Sports – $110.32 Caribbean Beach Standard -- $184.28 Caribbean Beach Standard (5-person rooms) – $216.00 How long have you been doing this trip? Since 2006 through our Carolina Homeschooler website, and then moved it to our new Traveling Homeschoolers website in 2016. We created our Traveling Homeschoolers website to feature our national and international trips that are open to everyone. Do you do this every year? We've done this trip every year since 2006. Will you do a Universal trip this year, too? Yes, here's the link to our Universal trip: http://www.travelinghomeschoolers.com/universal/ Disney Trip Description & Registration Link: https://www.travelinghomeschoolers.com/disney-world/
  5. How much of a discount will I get? You'll save $188+, based on the current Disney World gate ticket price beginning on November 16, 2019. Our tickets also include an educational program and our DinoLand private event, so our discount is actually more than $188. Disney usually increases their regular ticket prices at least once every year, so our discount may be more. (The price for our group tickets won't change.) Our tickets are also valid for a longer time period than the new date-based tickets, which must be used within a week or so. How do we qualify for these tickets? Students (and at least one parent) must participate in one of our educational programs: Disney Visual Arts Programs (animation, drawing, photography, location to be announced) on Monday, November 18 ($20 extra fee for materials for students and parents), ages 10 and up, age verification will be required) Behind the Seeds (at Epcot) on Wednesday, November 20 (ages 5 and up, age verification will be required) Caring for Giants (at Animal Kingdom) on Thursday, November 21 (ages 4 and up, age verification will be required) Your travel dates must include one of these programs, and you must have a day available on your ticket to enter one of the theme parks on the date of your program. Everything else is optional. NOTE: Your children can choose different educational programs (due to age restrictions or different interests). However, one parent must attend with students, while another parent/adult in your party stays behind with students who'll be attending a different program. ANOTHER NOTE: You may choose additional programs after our registration deadline if spots are available. There will be an additional cost per-person, per-program. I'll update with details if/when we have extra spots available. Do we have to stay together as a group? You must attend the group educational program you chose when you registered. Our private DinoLand event is a group event, too (but you don't have to attend if you don't want to). Everything else is on your own (unless you want to do any of the special events with us - private breakfasts or dinner party). Do you ever run out of tickets? Should I register early? We never run out of tickets, but we can (and probably will) run out of spots for special events and group rooms. I'm expecting a big group this fall, but if you register early, you'll have a better chance of getting special meals/events and rooms. Will everyone in my party get the discounted tickets? Everyone in your party will get the discounted tickets, and all students (and at least one parent to chaperone) must attend an educational program, whether they're homeschooling or not. Each family unit must register and pay separately (grandparents can be included on your registration). Ask others in your traveling party (sister's family, best friends and their children, etc.), to register separately and note that they're your guests in the comments section of their registration. If I visit Magic Kingdom and Epcot on the same day, does that count as 2 park days? No - you have hopper tickets and can visit 1, 2, 3 or all 4 parks in one day, it still only counts as one park day. This is very helpful if you want to spend the day at Animal Kingdom, then hop over to Epcot for our Dessert Party. Or whatever. Can I skip a day at the parks? Yes - park days don't have to be consecutive. You can go one day, skip the next, go the next, and the next, then skip the next two. Just stay within the date range of the tickets and make sure you save a day to attend the mandatory educational program. Can we use MagicBands with these tickets? Yes, you'll be able to add our tickets to your MagicBands via the My Disney Experience website. (I'll email more information about that before I mail your tickets.) Do we get MagicBands with these tickets? Only families staying at a Disney Resort get the MagicBands (whether they're with our group or not). MagicBands are a perk of staying at a Disney Resort. If you're not staying at a Disney Resort, you won't get MagicBands, but can buy them once you arrive (if you want them - they're not mandatory). Why aren't you offering Plus/Premium tickets this year (the ones with a water park and mini-golf courses added)? In order to streamline, I'm offering only the 5-day hopper tickets. It has the biggest discount this year and is the best value for our group. Few families wanted Plus/Premium tickets in the past, and with only one water park open, the extra cost isn't worth it. Do I still need to get your tickets if I have an annual pass to Disney, a military ticket, or if I'm a Disney cast member? Disney doesn't allow annual passholders, military ticket holders, and cast members to participate in our educational programs or group events without purchasing our tickets. Is the ticket price per day, or per ticket? The price is per ticket, not per day. When will I receive my tickets? If you register by the FastPass Registration Deadline, you'll receive your tickets in time to reserve your FastPass times 60 days in advance of our group arrival date (if you’re staying at a Disney resort) and 30 days in advance of our group arrival date (if you’re staying off Disney property). If you register by the Final Registration Deadline, you’ll get your tickets by two weeks prior to our group travel dates. Regardless of when you register, you won't receive your tickets right away. This is normal and your money is safe with me. If you don't trust me with your money, please don't register for this trip. (Here's more information about our group and how to determine whether you can trust me with your money.) Your tickets will be mailed to you via Priority, tracked, signature-required mail. Since we first started coordinating this trip in 2006, we never lost tickets in the mail until 2017 (two families). We think it was due to weather issues (we had several hurricanes impacting delivery), but we were able to work around the issues. So no worries; no stress! What dates are the tickets good for? Tickets will be valid from November 9 to November 30, but you must attend for your chosen educational program to qualify for our tickets. They'll expire after November 30, even if you haven’t used all 5 days. NOTE: Don't believe travel agents or even Disney cast members who tell you differently. They're not familiar with our tickets and will insist that they work the way regular Disney tickets do. (They don't.) You can arrive early or stay later than our group dates of November 16-23, but you must attend the educational program that week so make sure you save one day on your ticket to attend. Can I get more (or get fewer) days on our tickets? Disney doesn't offer our group discounted tickets above 5 days, and you can't add them to your tickets while you're at Disney. However, even if you plan to stay at Disney more than 5 days, our tickets will very likely be all you'll need. There are other places to spend your time that don't require a ticket: Disney Springs (formerly Downtown Disney) has a lot of shops, restaurants, and activities, as does the BoardWalk area. Families are often surprised at how much they enjoy Disney Springs, the BoardWalk, and just taking a break from the parks. You can't get fewer days because I'm only offering 5-day tickets this year. They're the best value for the majority of my travelers. If you're staying fewer days, use the extra day(s) to see the fireworks at Magic Kingdom on the day you arrive, or catch one more ride on Soarin' the morning of your departure day. Having the extra day really helps families feel they have more flexibility in their schedule, and a less stressful itinerary. Can I add park days to these tickets while I'm at Disney? You can't add days to these tickets. Are you offering Universal tickets in November? Yes, here's the link to our Universal trip: https://www.travelinghomeschoolers.com/universal/ Disney Trip Description & Registration Link: https://www.travelinghomeschoolers.com/disney-world/
  6. Join us at Disney World and enjoy all four theme parks, a private dessert party, an educational program, special group meals and events, and more! https://www.travelinghomeschoolers.com/disney-world/
  7. Dianna

    Disney World

    until
    Join us at Disney World and enjoy all four theme parks, a private dessert party, an educational program, special group meals and events, and more https://www.travelinghomeschoolers.com/disney-world/
  8. Are these FastPass tickets? Will I receive my tickets in time to make advanced FastPass reservations? FastPass tickets don't exist. FastPasses are when you reserve times for specific rides, attractions, or events in advance. To find out more about Disney's FastPass system and how it works, visit Disney’s FastPass Planning and FastPass FAQs websites to find out more. If you register by the FastPass Registration Deadline, you'll receive your tickets in time to reserve FastPasses 60 days in advance of our group trip dates (if you stay at a Disney Resort) or 30 days in advance (if you stay off-property). You can still make FastPass reservations after those dates, and even while you're there. Please read the links above to learn how it works. If I visit Magic Kingdom and Epcot on the same day, does that count as 2 park days? No - you have hopper tickets and can visit 1, 2, 3 or all 4 parks in one day, it still only counts as one park day. This is very helpful if you want to spend the day at Animal Kingdom, then hop over to Epcot for our Dessert Party. Or whatever. Can I skip a day at the parks? Yes - park days don't have to be consecutive. You can go one day, skip the next, go the next, and the next, then skip the next two. Just stay within the date range of the tickets and make sure you save a day to attend the mandatory educational program. Can we use MagicBands with these tickets? Yes, you'll be able to add our tickets to your MagicBands via the My Disney Experience website. (I'll email more information about that before I mail your tickets.) Do we get MagicBands with these tickets? Only families staying at a Disney Resort get the MagicBands (whether they're with our group or not). MagicBands are a perk of staying at a Disney Resort. If you're not staying at a Disney Resort, you won't get MagicBands, but can buy them once you arrive, if you want them (they're not mandatory). Disney Trip Description & Registration Link: https://www.travelinghomeschoolers.com/disney-world/
  9. What about Disney's Dining Plan? Disney doesn't allow multiple discounts, so we can't add the free dining plan to our room block. However, free dining isn't really free. Keep reading this section for more information. The dining plan (whether free or not) isn't as much of a bargain as it used to be. As of 4/24/18, you have to pay for a 4-day park ticket that includes either Park Hopper or the Park Hopper Plus option to qualify for the free dining. Some resorts are excluded from this offer and certain room categories may not be available. Also, there fewer dates of the free dining plan available now. You have to stay at a Disney deluxe resort to get the regular dining plan. You can stay at a value or moderate resort and get the quick service plan and then upgrade to the regular dining plan for an extra fee per person, per day, but that just increases the cost of the "free" dining. Also keep in mind that the dining plan (whether free or not) doesn’t include gratuity. Meals at Disney restaurants are very expensive, so their gratuity is also very expensive. (In some cases, the gratuity we paid for a Disney "free" meal was the same or more than what we paid for an entire meal for our family off-property.) We did the math and found that we could get our discounted tickets, pay out of pocket for our dining, and come out with a better deal. We've done this for the past 9 or years (after doing the free dining for 5 or so years prior to that), and find that we actually eat better, and enjoy our meals more. We park in the off-property restaurant's parking lot and walk right in, with no reservations, and are usually seated immediately. The atmosphere is always better - quieter, less hectic, and more leisurely paced. And the food has been better than comparable Disney restaurants. (In our opinion, the quality and portion sizes at Disney have decreased over the years at Disney's restaurants due to the free dining.) Every family is different, though, so I encourage you to check out your options and do the math for your own family and circumstances. The dining plan has changed so much now that it may not be the best deal for your family, either. Can we pay for the Dining Plan if we stay at one of the group resorts? You won't be able to buy a dining plan if you reserve one of our discounted group rooms. If we add the dining plan to our group block, it would prevent us from being able to take advantage of any discounts Disney offers in the future. If Disney offers a room discount that results in a lower price than our group rates, we can ask them to reduce our group rate (if we don't have the dining plan attached). Also, if we add the dining plan, each adult in the room would have to pay more, even if they don't want to add on the dining plan. If we don't add the dining plan, we can have more than 2 adults in a room without paying more. Disney Trip Description & Registration Link: https://www.travelinghomeschoolers.com/disney-world/
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