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Trip Report "It's for work, I swear!"

Discussion in 'WDW Trip Reports' started by imahistorygeek, Mar 6, 2017.

  1. imahistorygeek

    imahistorygeek Well-Known Member

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    When I have my students complete identification questions, I always make them give me the who, what, when, where, and why of the word. So that's what I’m going to give you.

    Who: Myself and @lostpro9het

    What: Another trip to Disney

    When: March 19 – 23

    Where: Pop Century

    Why: Here's perhaps the most important bit of info. It's not for fun trip (yes it is). It's for work, I swear! Sean has a conference. He cannot go to Orlando without me. He just can't.

    The seeds of this trip were planted around October of last year. Sean mentioned a big IT conference and said he probably wouldn't go. Fast forward to a few months ago and he's decided he's going.

    First things first...I book airfare via SouthWest. Let me tell you now. I HATE FLYING. I'm convinced we are all going to die. I've been reading a book to learn strategies to help with this, so we (and you) will see how it goes.

    I had to do some research regarding the Orlando Convention Center, conference hotels (not a Disney one in sight – boo), and all the costs associated with the trip. We were trying to find a hotel that fit the following qualifications: remained within the per diem, free transport to Disney or Disney Springs OR within walking distance of DS. Guess what? None of those fit.

    We chose Cabana Bay Resort at Universal. I had resigned myself to the possibility of not visiting WDW. Sacrilege, I say. I wouldn't have minded staying there, but if there's a Disney alternative, I'm taking it. Fast forward to today. We were trying to arrange a shuttle to/from the airport. It was approx. $70 RT for the both of us and we'd be at the mercy of Mears. I then looked up rental car prices. They weren't bad, plus we wouldn't be reliant on the shuttle AND we could visit Disney AND have all of our Disney food choices. This is really what we wanted.

    I crunched the numbers.

    Cabana Bay was almost $900, plus $12 for parking.

    Pop Century WITH a rental car was $793. No brainer. I canceled Cabana Bay asap and booked Pop with a car rental.

    Everything (except my FP selections) have been planned.

    What can you expect on this trip:
    • Me flying – yikes. I'm not as nervous as I usually am about flying, so I take that as a good sign.
    • Me driving in Orlando. - I'm taking Sean to/from the convention center. Parking is $15/day (unless someone knows something I don't), so that's not even an option.
    • Me solo at the parks – I'm going to ride some rides solo and get some character photos.
    We're super-excited that we will be at Disney 2-ish weeks.
     
  2. MySmallWorldof4

    MySmallWorldof4 Well-Known Member

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    Impromptu trip to Disney? Can't say no to that, even if you have to take a dreaded plane.:eek: I hate them too, which is why we will drive 13-14 hours to get there. Okay, airfare for 6 does contribute some to why we drive, and the ability to take whatever we want, and to have enough room to bring home whatever we buy.;)
     
  3. amjt660

    amjt660 Well-Known Member

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    Wow - quick prep and the trip will be here in no time all
    Looking forward to the TR

    (and by I swear its work - you mean for Sean - just to clarify - you will be chilling the whole time right????)

    Max
     
  4. imahistorygeek

    imahistorygeek Well-Known Member Original Poster

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    I wish! I teach an online class in my spare time, so I'll have work, but I can't be at Disney and not go to Disney!
     
  5. imahistorygeek

    imahistorygeek Well-Known Member Original Poster

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    I can't imagine airfare for 6! The only real reason we are flying is because work is paying for 1 flight.
    I'm really hoping this will be a stress-free flight, for me at least. Sean's fine with flying.
     
  6. imahistorygeek

    imahistorygeek Well-Known Member Original Poster

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    I've made my FP selections. If I get to them, I get to them. If I don't, I don't.

    March 20 - Epcot
    - Character Spot
    - Soarin
    - Don't have a third option. Will do single TT line.

    March 21 - Animal Kingdom
    - Dinosaur
    - Expedition Everest
    - Character Spot

    March 22 - Magic Kingdom
    - Space Mountain
    - Something I've labeled as BT
    - Character Spot
     
  7. mcstensrud

    mcstensrud Well-Known Member

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    I'm with you about flying but driving from Boston has us missing 2 Days at least in the Bubble.
    We had to drive once right after 9/11 cuz there wasn't any flights departing out of Logan.
    Awesome that you can go again!
     
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  8. amjt660

    amjt660 Well-Known Member

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    OK - well if you have to work you might as well be close to the most magical place on earth.

    I hope you have a great trip

    Max
     
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  9. Zipitidoda

    Zipitidoda Well-Known Member

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    I love Disney with DH but walking around solo would be fantastic. Someday.... Someday.
     
  10. imahistorygeek

    imahistorygeek Well-Known Member Original Poster

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    I finished my book today about overcoming a fear of flying. I'm hoping that this will enable us to fly more places, like Disneyland, other ports for Disney cruises, etc. I've never flown SW before and am used to assigned seating. Any tips from seasoned SW fliers?
     
  11. LadyBelle

    LadyBelle Well-Known Member

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    I've flown SW once, but I can tell you, check in as early as possible, like within 1 minute of your 24-hour window. That way, you'll get an early boarding number (probably in the Bs), but you'll have better options for a window or aisle seat.

    I've flown lots, but I still get nervous. I always get an aisle seat, quicker to get out of the plane when you land. :D
     
  12. blgauger

    blgauger Well-Known Member

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    I wouldn't necessarily call myself "seasoned," but I do know that you need to be ready to check in at exactly the time they make it available. This gives you the best chance at "top priority" seating or in other words, seating with your party. I've always ended up in boarding class B and still had quite a few seats to choose from.
     
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  13. MySmallWorldof4

    MySmallWorldof4 Well-Known Member

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    Make sure you pre-check in as early as they let you so you can be in one of the first boarding groups.
     
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  14. LisaBelle

    LisaBelle Well-Known Member

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    Lucky You! Glad you were able to pull this all together! I also hate to fly. I am looking forward to hearing about the strategies to overcome your fear of flying. Sending pixie dust your way!
     
  15. coachwnh

    coachwnh Well-Known Member

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    Have a great time!
     
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  16. bee

    bee Well-Known Member

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    I fly SWA almost exclusively. The lack of assigned seating can be shocking to those used to other airlines. What I like about Southwest is their boarding procedure is orderly and quick. Instead of being clumped into a few giant boarding "zones" and having to fight through the crowds at the gate to line up with your zone, you have an exact boarding position by letter (A, B, or C) and number (1-60). The gate agents keep things under control by announcing exactly when each group should line up and generally passengers are good about lining up in the correct order. After flying SWA so much over the last few years I realize that much of my flight anxiety from before was due to previous airlines having chaotic boarding procedures that actually took longer despite assigned seating.

    As others have said, have the mobile app or your computer ready to go to check in exactly 24 hours before your flight time. I always set an alarm for 5 minutes before so I can make sure I'm logged into my account and/or have my confirmation number ready. Once I paid the $15 (?) for early checkin, and checked in maybe 20 hours before instead and was placed mid-A group. I only did this because I had an audition the day of checkin and wanted to sleep as late as possible to be rested. If you just do it at the 24 hour mark you should be fine.

    When you actually get on the plane: unless I have a short layover I prefer to just go to the very back row so I can get out of the way and have the best chance at getting an overhead bin nearby and (if the flight isn't too full) possibly having an empty seat next to me. When my wife and I fly together we will sit in an aisle and window seat in the same row and most of the time no one takes the middle seat and we have a row to ourselves.

    If you're still anxious once you get in the air, drinks are $5!
     
  17. imahistorygeek

    imahistorygeek Well-Known Member Original Poster

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    The name of the book is Soar: The Breakthrough Treatment for Fear of Flying.

    You basically associate the negative with a positive. You have to make your brain realize that all those scary noises are routine.
    The book teaches you how to do this and also includes ways to shut your brain off to the anxiety. It also goes through how flying actually works. It has really been beneficial to me.
     
  18. MySmallWorldof4

    MySmallWorldof4 Well-Known Member

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    Let us know if it actually helped once your flight is done.:)
     
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  19. Doc Disney

    Doc Disney Well-Known Member

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    I almost always just suck it up and pay the $15 for Early Bird Check - In because that way I won't forget to check in (esp when in Disney). I have always gotten the A group with that which is nice because families with small children (i.e. a huge chunk of people flying to and from Orlando) board between A and B :) If you do Early Bird check-in you don't have to check in at all but I usually do at least look at my ticket to know where I was placed. The few times I have checked in though I have usually gotten early Bs if you check in at 24 hours (like everyone else said :)).
     
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  20. imahistorygeek

    imahistorygeek Well-Known Member Original Poster

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    I bundled the car rental and hotel on Expedia, so that means I couldn't link the resort to MDE for a few days. You need an actual Disney confirmation number. This is kind of a pain, BUT the convenience of it all (the bundling aspect) makes it tolerable.

    I've called three days in a row for a number. CMs have varied in their responses and levels of Disney enthusiasm.

    Today was my lucky day and didn't have to wait on hold. I received the number and quickly linked the reservation.

    Next up was online checkin. I was unable to do this because I had already made my requests through Expedia. At least I'm assuming that's why. I've heard about these elusive king-sized beds at Pop. I have requested one. We shall see. We also have a standard room, so it may be a two-day walk before I get to the busses.

    And horrors of all horrors...I will have wait at an uncovered bus stop (unless something has changed). First world problems, I know.

    I'm excited about hitting our old stomping grounds. I'm curious to see if anything has changed.
     
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