When Did WDW Become An Extended Vacation Destination?

Robbiem

Well-Known Member
No, but I remember going to Boardwalk and Baseball to find it had just closed down.

I remember visiting B&B in1989 It was my first ever overseas trip from the UK. Inhave to say the only things I remember was a wooden coaster, parachute drop and an attraction where you fired balls from air cannons at tanks with other guests in. It didn’t make much of an impression.
the really vivid memory is of our first day visiting WDW. We took a mears bus from international drive. I remember my dad tapping me on the shoulder and saying look over there and saw spaceship earth for the first time my jaw dropped 😀✌️
 

"El Scorpion"

Premium Member
In the Parks
No
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I remember visiting B&B in1989 It was my first ever overseas trip from the UK. Inhave to say the only things I remember was a wooden coaster, parachute drop and an attraction where you fired balls from air cannons at tanks with other guests in. It didn’t make much of an impression.
the really vivid memory is of our first day visiting WDW. We took a mears bus from international drive. I remember my dad tapping me on the shoulder and saying look over there and saw spaceship earth for the first time my jaw dropped 😀

Was pretty much the same coaster at Circus World. Was called "The Hurricane" there. Not sure if they renamed it for B&B. The circus theme (for a kid at least) was pretty cool. Seemed like the conversion into B&B catered more to the male side of the family - which was probably a major issue (Especially if it was a dad with three daughters).
 

addacollier

Member
My first trip was in Sept 1989. Flying in from the UK, a 2 week trip was the only option. We bought a 5 day WDW pass. MGM studios had been open for 3 months but no Universal. We also did Seaworld, Wet n Wild, Boardwalk and Baseball Church Street Station and the Buccaneers/Saints game in Tampa.
 

Goofyernmost

Well-Known Member
My first trip was in Sept 1989. Flying in from the UK, a 2 week trip was the only option. We bought a 5 day WDW pass. MGM studios had been open for 3 months but no Universal. We also did Seaworld, Wet n Wild, Boardwalk and Baseball Church Street Station and the Buccaneers/Saints game in Tampa.
I assume you did what I did whenever I flew in to Orlando and that was to rent a car. There is so much to see in central Florida it would be a shame to spend that much time there and only see one thing. I honestly found something new every time I explored the area. One of my biggest surprises was finding Bok Tower. No thrill rides, no shows except the music from the tower. If you want a relaxing place to go after a few hot, sweaty days in the parks, this is the place to go. It is just a stroll around huge Spanish moss covered live oaks. I fell asleep sitting on a bench under one of those. Best few minutes of my life. As a disclaimer, I have no physical or economic connection with the place, but my emotional connection is strong. Here's the website. I cannot emphasize enough that it is one of the most peaceful locations I have ever found in Central Florida, or anywhere else for that matter. Thinking back a very long way to childhood, I would have to say that young children will quickly achieve maximum and vocal boredom.

 
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Wendy Hopkins

New Member
So, we all know that for the first 11 years of existence, WDW was only one park, which increased to 2 when Epcot opened. My question is, when did most people start to consider it a place to take an extended vacation, ie more than just 2-3 days as part of a general vacation to central Florida that would normally include other local attractions as well? Was it at that point when DHS opened, or did it take adding DAK as the fourth park to entice more guests to visit for a week or more? Did the additions of Pleasure Island/DTD and the water parks have an effect as well?
My family stayed 4 to 5 days when it was only Magic Kingdom. 7 to 10 days when there were three parks.
 

addacollier

Member
I assume you did what I did whenever I flew in to Orlando and that was to rent a car. There is so much to see in central Florida it would be a shame to spend that much time there and only see one thing. I honestly found something new every time I explored the area. One of my biggest surprises was finding Bok Tower. No thrill rides, no shows except the music from the tower. If you want a relaxing place to go after a few hot, sweaty days in the parks, this is the place to go. It is just a stroll around huge Spanish moss covered live oaks. I fell asleep sitting on a bench under one of those. Best few minutes of my life. As a disclaimer, I have no physical or economic connection with the place, but my emotional connection is strong. Here's the website. I cannot emphasize enough that it is one of the most peaceful locations I have ever found in Central Florida, or anywhere else for that matter. Thinking back a very long way to childhood, I would have to say that young children will quickly achieve maximum and vocal boredom.


Our group were 19, 20 & 21 years of age so we didn't hire a car except for 1 day to Tampa. The shuttle's to the parks were fine and quite frequent. I've hired a car in all of the other visits.
 

Goofyernmost

Well-Known Member
Our group were 19, 20 & 21 years of age so we didn't hire a car except for 1 day to Tampa. The shuttle's to the parks were fine and quite frequent. I've hired a car in all of the other visits.
I didn't realize that they had a hotel shuttle to downtown Orlando and back in the earlier days there really wasn't much besides WDW, SeaWorld and Gatorland.
 

DisneyFreak

Well-Known Member
I have to say this... I don't know if I would get out of there alive if I stayed that long. I realize that my attention span is limited, but the longest I ever stayed onsite (with a vehicle) was 7 days and by the end of it I was looking for a mouse trap big enough to catch a 5 foot Mouse. I was going out of my mind. I felt trapped and drained of money all going to one place.

I know it is just me and that others really enjoy long stays there, but I'm afraid that isn't in my DNA. The ironic part of that is that I have loved WDW since the first day I drove on to the property 37 years ago. There was a time when that was the number one priority in my life. I tried to devise a plan where I could do work for Disney, holding seminars in my home town area, convincing people to visit WDW because of the excitement it projected to me. Then I got the idea of getting a commercial drivers license so I could drive bus at WDW when I "semi" retired. Over the years and because of the pure hassle that going there has become (not to mention the cost), I still love WDW but not with the intensity that I once did. And after that one week stay onsite I was almost angry about how dollar motivated they were and I became someone that didn't mind spending money to go there, but that I felt an obligation to spread the cash around to someplace other then Disney. Even if it cost me more to stay offsite, (it didn't) I just couldn't handle being that hooked into that club.

I feel very similar to you Goofyernmost. I don't nearly go as often or for as long. There are many more places I would rather go and see now and get more vacation/vacations out of it.
 

Lilofan

Well-Known Member
I didn't realize that they had a hotel shuttle to downtown Orlando and back in the earlier days there really wasn't much besides WDW, SeaWorld and Gatorland.
Church Street Station in downtown Orlando was popular 30 years ago. Now the area is a mix of bars, expensive apts and condos, office buildings and homeless people all around.
 

ELG13

Well-Known Member
Every time....seriously...every time I had tried to plan a "quick trip" it always turned into more. Before we had APs it was hard to pass up the "oh if we add an extra day its only X$s". We have a 6 hr drive so we always end up saying if we are gonna go, lets go. We hate going for 2 nights just to turn right around when its cheaper for the tickets to stay longer. Obviously when you add the room and food etc it isnt but when you add a day at $150 versus when you had 2 days for $450 it was just too hard to turn down another day.
 

addacollier

Member
I didn't realize that they had a hotel shuttle to downtown Orlando and back in the earlier days there really wasn't much besides WDW, SeaWorld and Gatorland.
We weren’t in downtown. We stayed at the Twin Towers (now the Doubletree) opposite Universal. We did 5 days at WDW, 2 at WnW, 1 at SW, 1 at B&B 1 at Tampa and 3 shopping and poolside. So quite busy for 1989.
 

MickeyLuv'r

Well-Known Member
Every time....seriously...every time I had tried to plan a "quick trip" it always turned into more. Before we had APs it was hard to pass up the "oh if we add an extra day its only X$s". We have a 6 hr drive so we always end up saying if we are gonna go, lets go. We hate going for 2 nights just to turn right around when its cheaper for the tickets to stay longer. Obviously when you add the room and food etc it isnt but when you add a day at $150 versus when you had 2 days for $450 it was just too hard to turn down another day.

Over the years, there have been times when adding 1 or even 2 days to our WDW visits was free, or even a savings!

There was one time I added a day to our visit, and came out over $200 ahead. The only cost that came out of that savings was the extra dinner
 

Sirwalterraleigh

Premium Member
Over the years, there have been times when adding 1 or even 2 days to our WDW visits was free, or even a savings!

There was one time I added a day to our visit, and came out over $200 ahead. The only cost that came out of that savings was the extra dinner
Boy...them days is gone, ain’t they??
 

ELG13

Well-Known Member
Over the years, there have been times when adding 1 or even 2 days to our WDW visits was free, or even a savings!

There was one time I added a day to our visit, and came out over $200 ahead. The only cost that came out of that savings was the extra dinner
Ive had a few trips work out close to that. I didnt come out that far ahead until i opted for annual passes vs fl resident tickets. Id never looked to compare and then when I did i had to make my husband run the numbers because Im not the best at math and i thought that I for sure had it wrong. It saved us $400 when I switched to annual passes.
 

Tom 55

Well-Known Member
My first trip was in 1979 for my honeymoon when MK was still paper tickets. We rented a car and stayed at a hotel that was right outside main gate. Went and visited Cypress Garden, Gatorland and Sea World. Came back in 82 and went to Tampa for Busch Garden maybe.
 

Dog Ate Mouse

Well-Known Member
We go most of the times for 7 to 10 days in WDW. We go to all the parks and restaurants every day on our trip. We go to the water park for one day and then go on a Bass Fishing trip on another day and Do a lets do things at our resort day like go swimming, have drinks and listen to Piano Bob and rent boats and take it to down town Disney. Go to down town Disney and shop and eat for the day.

After our ten day trip we then use to check into the value resorts and stay there at night while going to other things to do like sea world or Universal and so on. This allowed us to use free transportation to DTD for the night to go and get something to eat and ice cream and do a little more shopping. We have our car with us and have the freedom to just go about our business. Also having the car allowed us to go to the Parks to see the firework shows and so on and avoid the crowds and late arrival back to the resort after the stampeded to the bus stops occurred.

Staying at the value resorts while going to other things to do in Orlando just gives us that WDW feel even though our WDW vaction stay is over. This is a to each their own kind of thing with no right or wrong answers. It just a way however you make it work for you and your family. This is our style and simply just enjoy our entire vaction in Orlando. By the time we get home we are glad to be in our bed and have a good home cooked meal after all the good rich foods that we had. It makes you appreciate and look forward to the next vaction in WDW and at the same time when it is all over on an old saying, There is no place like home.
 

MickeyLuv'r

Well-Known Member
Boy...them days is gone, ain’t they??

Not necessarily...

A good chunk of the savings came from lower travel costs. The second big deal was that I happened on was a non-WDW hotel offered a free night deal. The hotel happened to include free breakfast to boot!

Since then, I learned to play around with travel dates when possible, and sometimes still get lucky. I don't think I'll get the free hotel again, but travel cost savings is always possible.
 

NeedMoreMickey

Well-Known Member
In 1983 flew into Tampa and went to Bush Gardens. Next day dove to Cypress Gardens then checked into the Poly. Think we went to Sea World one day. And of course we spent a day at River Country. usually finished the day at one of the two Disney parks.
 

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