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Pre-Trip We are family...I got all my cousins with me

Songbird76

Well-Known Member
Original Poster
I was going to wait to start a pre-trip report since we haven't even booked yet, but we're GOING to, and part of the hold up is waiting to hear when the rest of the family wants to go and can, and who will be with us. So...details will change as I get them. For now:
Who: My family of 4, consisting of DH (Mark), myself (Susan), DD (E) who will be 13, and DS (A) who will be 11.
cinderella dinner.jpg

My brother and his family, consisting of Him (J) and his Husband (also J, so I will collectively call them JJ) and their daughter (N) who will be 6, and also possibly his in-laws...(brother in-law and parents-in-law) All from Wyoming So, JJ, N, the parents-in-law D and S, and their other son R. My brother is paying for them to go because they have done a LOT for our family. They are amazing people and I am so excited to get to share this with them. I think they will be hooked. If nothing else, they will love the nightlife. But they have treated me like a daughter from day one....like I come with the package, and they helped us out so much last year when my dad died, and they are just so much fun. I don't think I have any pictures of them unless it's from drag queen bingo. Nope...but I raided my brother's pictures and here's one of their family at Mount Rushmore. Granny S must be taking the picture.
nessa vacation.jpg

And My family plus JJ and N at the Mammoth site in South Dakota)
mammoth site family.jpg

And also my cousins. My cousin has kids my age, all with their own families, so if everyone in their family comes there are like....13 of them? My cousin and his girlfriend, together known as Jimger, his oldest son B and his 2 boys and possibly a new girlfriend....I think his oldest will be 9, and youngest maybe 7?, his daughter C and her boyfriend and daughter who will be...,8? and then his youngest M and his wife and 2 girls....the oldest will I think be 12, and the youngest maybe 5 or 6? From Iowa and Illinois (Picture is my family, JJ and N, Jimger, C and her daughter L at Mount Rushmore before my 4 went to Disney in 2016)
mount rushmore family.jpg



When: July 20th 2019 for 2 weeks at Disney, and then probably a week in Orlando doing Universal, and other places. (varying depending on who) My kids' last day of school is July 19th, so the 20th is the earliest possible date for us to arrive. 2 or 3 of the cousins are teachers and have to be back in Mid August, so we can't go very late. My brother's family will be there for 1 week.

Where: My family and my brother's will be at CBR, the cousins are looking at Airbnb. My family will also be doing a 4 or 5 night package at Universal for Harry Potter, and then some other places we need to look into. The rest, I have no idea if they are just thinking Disney or a bit of everything.

Why: Well, why not? Basically, we have the money to go again, so we're booking and my cousin's daughter C found out we were going and she was semi-planning as well, but didn't have a timeline and mentioned we should coordinate. Jimger both quit smoking this past year after a health scare, and are wanting to celebrate with a trip to Disney, but none of them have been there since I was around 9 or 10 I guess. So they are a bit out of touch with what it's like now. And if the whole famn damily is getting together, we want my brother's family to be there too. The added bonus being my brother-in-law's birthday and my brother and his husband's anniversary both at the end of July, which we could celebrate at Disney.
So, we could have anywhere between 4 and 25 peolple. The good news is, I only really have to do ALL the planning for my 4. But, the rest have either never been to Disney, or haven't been there in decades (Pre- MGM and AK) and really have no clue about what it is like now. So I am going to be the go-to person, which is why I started this pre-trip now. HELP!!!!!!!
My brother hasn't been since he was 14 I think? Maybe even longer. But he's in his 40s now.

His husband and family are dragging their feet because it's expensive. They have never been there and can't imagine it being worth the price tag. So, he's asking me for ways to save money. So....since they are all American, they can't use the deal I get over here in Europe. So...how do you all save the most money? Is it cheaper to stay off property or rent DVC points? How about the campgrounds? Are there rooms that sleep 6 at any of the resorts or would they need 2 rooms? I've been trying to do a Disney trip with my brother since 2010 and he always backs out because of the money. So I need money saving tips and any incentive that shows how much value you actually get for that money. GO!
 
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krisri18

Well-Known Member
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Sounds like one big crazy fun trip!!
There are resorts that sleep 6: the family suites at AoA and ASMusic fit 6, as do the cabins at Fort Wilderness. There's also the 2 bedroom options at the deluxes, but those can be pricy. Renting DVC points is definitely a money saver over Disney rack rates, I have done it through David's DVC rentals. The downside is that it was a nonrefundable trip, not sure if it's different through other rental sites.
Plenty of ways to save money for/at Disney! We like to do the gift card method for things. We purchase gift cards a little at a time at BJ'S for 5% off (Target red card users do too I believe) and save them up for our trip.
There's also the order groceries method to save on food, eat some meals off-site, share meals, buy small souvenirs ahead of time to surprise kids with instead of buying at the parks. So many ways to save!
 

Songbird76

Well-Known Member
Original Poster
Sounds like one big crazy fun trip!!
There are resorts that sleep 6: the family suites at AoA and ASMusic fit 6, as do the cabins at Fort Wilderness. There's also the 2 bedroom options at the deluxes, but those can be pricy. Renting DVC points is definitely a money saver over Disney rack rates, I have done it through David's DVC rentals. The downside is that it was a nonrefundable trip, not sure if it's different through other rental sites.
Plenty of ways to save money for/at Disney! We like to do the gift card method for things. We purchase gift cards a little at a time at BJ'S for 5% off (Target red card users do too I believe) and save them up for our trip.
There's also the order groceries method to save on food, eat some meals off-site, share meals, buy small souvenirs ahead of time to surprise kids with instead of buying at the parks. So many ways to save!
Where have you stayed using the DVC points? How much did it save, if you don't mind me asking? Do you still get all the perks if you do that? Like making fastpass reservations 60 days prior, EMH, magic bands, etc?
 

Songbird76

Well-Known Member
Original Poster
Even though it would make a difference in FP bookings, they should definitely look into renting an off-site house. Check out VRBO for possibilities.
Yes, I told him to look at off-site hotels, but I hadn't thought of renting a house. Is that through airbnb or is there another reputable sight? My cousins were looking at an Airbnb place that sleeps 15...perfect for them if they all go. I don't think it matters too much to them if they don't get the fastpasses or anything. They really don't even know what fastpasses are. We're looking at getting a DAS pass for DS and C was like "Oh is that the fastpass thing I read about?" Um....no. I think they are more laid back about it....whatever they see, they see. Not at all park commandos, so then staying off-property is fine for them because they don't necessarily NEED all the benefits of staying on-property. We'll still get to do stuff together, we just might not be able to do the most POPULAR things together. With my brother, they like their creature comforts. While my family is content to stay in a budget hotel because we just need a place to sleep, my brother is more of a hottub/jacusi, nice breakfast in the morning, kingsize bed type person. Though his in-laws DO have a cabin where they go stay once in a while and it doesn't have wifi or anything, so I guess he is capable of roughing it....sort of. But I think he's going to want more luxury than Disney value resorts can provide, so I need to find him some options that give him the amenities he wants without a Disney luxury pricetag.
 

Songbird76

Well-Known Member
Original Poster
I would also be interested in any tips people have for must-dos for the first timers. There are a few experiences we haven't had ourselves yet, but I don't know if they will want to do all of those. But what are some things they might not want to miss? I'm thinking iconic Disney. The things that you would miss out on the Disney experience if you didn't do them. It's a small world, Spaceship Earth are two of mine, and at least one night/fireworks show. Hoop-dee-doo revue we haven't done yet because I didn't think my kids' English was good enough to get the jokes last time, but it's on our agenda this time and I imagine my niece would love it. But there might be things I don't even know about that all you Disney veterans can point me towards. I want to make sure everyone has the BEST time possible.
 

Nemo14

Well-Known Member
Yes, I told him to look at off-site hotels, but I hadn't thought of renting a house. Is that through airbnb or is there another reputable sight? My cousins were looking at an Airbnb place that sleeps 15...perfect for them if they all go. I don't think it matters too much to them if they don't get the fastpasses or anything. They really don't even know what fastpasses are. We're looking at getting a DAS pass for DS and C was like "Oh is that the fastpass thing I read about?" Um....no. I think they are more laid back about it....whatever they see, they see. Not at all park commandos, so then staying off-property is fine for them because they don't necessarily NEED all the benefits of staying on-property. We'll still get to do stuff together, we just might not be able to do the most POPULAR things together. With my brother, they like their creature comforts. While my family is content to stay in a budget hotel because we just need a place to sleep, my brother is more of a hottub/jacusi, nice breakfast in the morning, kingsize bed type person. Though his in-laws DO have a cabin where they go stay once in a while and it doesn't have wifi or anything, so I guess he is capable of roughing it....sort of. But I think he's going to want more luxury than Disney value resorts can provide, so I need to find him some options that give him the amenities he wants without a Disney luxury pricetag.
VRBO.com is a very reputable site. We've rented houses we've found there many times and have never been disappointed.
 

bee

Well-Known Member
Have you considered the Swan or Dolphin? You get the magic of the Boardwalk area, usually at the price of a Disney moderate resort (or less!). Make sure to factor in the resort fee and parking fee (if anyone will be driving-but of course now Disney resorts have a parking fee too) when you consider the budget.

You do get Extra Magic Hours and Disney transportation (buses, boats). You do not get Magical Express from the airport and when I've booked through Starwood I have only been able to make FPs at 30 days, not at 60. The only FP I've been unable to get at 30 days out is Flight of Passage. I believe if you book through Disney (not through Starwood) you get FPs at 60 days. You also don't get the "magical" Disney theming of the official resorts, but personally I like the more subtle decor of the Swolphin.
 

MomofPrincessGrace

Well-Known Member
Where have you stayed using the DVC points? How much did it save, if you don't mind me asking? Do you still get all the perks if you do that? Like making fastpass reservations 60 days prior, EMH, magic bands, etc?
google David's DVC rentals and go to the cost calculator. Two weeks from July 2019 - August 3rd could be around $3k for a studio at AK or Saratoga Springs all the way up to $18k for a 2 bedroom at Grand Floridian. When we were pricing our vacation for next year, you can get a deluxe studio at AKL, BW, SS, or Old Key West for the same as we spent on a moderate room at POR.
 

kimberlymautz

Well-Known Member
I agree with using VRBO to rent a big house! We rented one in Cape May, NJ for all of my cousins (okay, not all of us, my dad is one of eight so getting all 50+ people in one house is basically impossible) and the house was huge and wonderful. Cars would have to be rented (or they could drive which would possibly save money depending on distance and MPG), but splitting a house between a bunch of people is definitely going to be the least expensive option. Then they can also share cooking and food with each other, also another money saver.

My ex was the same way. He just couldn't understand how people spend so much money to go. And then when we took our last trip he's the one getting drawn in by the DVC booth. 🙄

I hope it works out for you! I wish I could do a big trip down with my cousins, but alas, there are WAY too many of us. I'd have to hit the lottery and then just force them all down. Haha.
 

krisri18

Well-Known Member
Where have you stayed using the DVC points? How much did it save, if you don't mind me asking? Do you still get all the perks if you do that? Like making fastpass reservations 60 days prior, EMH, magic bands, etc?
We've done AKL, both kidani and jambo, and Boardwalk. I'm not sure how much we saved, but the savings were significant enough that we have booked more than once. Lol. Our last AKL trip we got a 2 bedroom and had 9 people in it. You still get all the benefits of an on-site stay: magic bands, EMH, 60 day fast passes, etc. You just don't get the benefits of being a DVC member: use of the dvc lounges, pool hopping (unless it's a sister resort), etc.
 

Songbird76

Well-Known Member
Original Poster
I agree with using VRBO to rent a big house! We rented one in Cape May, NJ for all of my cousins (okay, not all of us, my dad is one of eight so getting all 50+ people in one house is basically impossible) and the house was huge and wonderful. Cars would have to be rented (or they could drive which would possibly save money depending on distance and MPG), but splitting a house between a bunch of people is definitely going to be the least expensive option. Then they can also share cooking and food with each other, also another money saver.

My ex was the same way. He just couldn't understand how people spend so much money to go. And then when we took our last trip he's the one getting drawn in by the DVC booth. 🙄

I hope it works out for you! I wish I could do a big trip down with my cousins, but alas, there are WAY too many of us. I'd have to hit the lottery and then just force them all down. Haha.
I hear you....this is only ONE cousin's family. There are more, but this is the family I am closest with and we did South Dakota with some of them in 2016 and had an absolute blast. The kids all got along so so well. There was only one incident with my son when my 3 year old niece wouldn't leave him alone when he asked, and he pushed her. That was the only incident we had with the kids getting along. So I'd call it a win. This time there would be twice as many kids, but I think it might be good for my son to see other kids doing rides and things. Right now, he's afraid of everything, but we were in Germany over the weekend and we went hiking and he followed my friend's son up this hill, completely forgetting until he was at the top that he's afraid of heights. So I think he'll do more if he's with other kids without even noticing what he's doing. So I REALLY hope they all come.
Do you know how many people can sleep in one house? could all....20 of them rent a house together, or would they need 2 houses?

I'm really hoping that my brother's family gets drawn in!!! When my dad died last year, I spent a lot of time with them and my niece was so enamored with all things Disney. When she found out I could sing, she made me sing every Disney song I know, and then she wanted to look at all my Disney pictures from our last trip. I know she wants to go so badly....I think when they see her there, so happy, they won't be able to resist. They'll be hooked.

I was doing some pricing for my brother and noticed certain rooms were disappearing. So I called and booked right away. I ended up having to get a preferred room rather than a standard, but it cost me a whopping 15 euros more.:eek: So, we are set for our family.
 

Songbird76

Well-Known Member
Original Poster
Ok, so I got the go-ahead to book 2 rooms for a week for my brother's family at CBR. I'm shocked....here I am sending him charts and all these wonderful budget saving tips, and they decide to go for on-property. I suppose I made it sound pretty amazing to be on property. I loved being in the bubble. The only thing that might change is if his in-laws can't get the time off. But, at least we FINALLY get to show my niece all things Disney. I'm so going to corrupt her!
 

figmentfan423

Well-Known Member
Ok, so I got the go-ahead to book 2 rooms for a week for my brother's family at CBR. I'm shocked....here I am sending him charts and all these wonderful budget saving tips, and they decide to go for on-property. I suppose I made it sound pretty amazing to be on property. I loved being in the bubble. The only thing that might change is if his in-laws can't get the time off. But, at least we FINALLY get to show my niece all things Disney. I'm so going to corrupt her!
CONGRATS!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Seeing you're booked in the bubble would renting points be cheaper and easier with your crowd size?
 

Songbird76

Well-Known Member
Original Poster
CONGRATS!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Seeing you're booked in the bubble would renting points be cheaper and easier with your crowd size?
Not really, because if we rented points we wouldn't get the free dining, which is substantial with our group. And we wouldn't get memory maker with it, nor the ultimate tickets that also give admission to the water parks. My niece is a water baby....I have a suspicion that she's going to LOVE the water parks. On our 2016 vacation, we went to Evan's Plunge in South Dakota....she was 3, and I lost count of how many times she did the slides....one of them that even -I- wouldn't go on, and she asked my husband to go with her, and both her daddies...she LOVED it. So I think the water parks will be a BIG hit. We need the tickets with the water parks!
 

figmentfan423

Well-Known Member
Not really, because if we rented points we wouldn't get the free dining, which is substantial with our group. And we wouldn't get memory maker with it, nor the ultimate tickets that also give admission to the water parks. My niece is a water baby....I have a suspicion that she's going to LOVE the water parks. On our 2016 vacation, we went to Evan's Plunge in South Dakota....she was 3, and I lost count of how many times she did the slides....one of them that even -I- wouldn't go on, and she asked my husband to go with her, and both her daddies...she LOVED it. So I think the water parks will be a BIG hit. We need the tickets with the water parks!
I keep forgetting you get different deals on your side of the pond.
 
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