Trip Coach: September 20, 2005

"Disney Dweebs" David Koening and Jim Hill answer your Disney questions

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san francisco, ca: Along with Disneyland, I, and several of my friends are turning 50 this year. Because I've been to Disneyland on most of it's important birthdays, and because it's my favorite place in the world, I want to celebrate my birthday there. My birthday is December 8, and I would like to be there that day. Does Disney offer any special packages or options for grown up kids celebrating 50th birthdays with the park?

David Koening: Nothing that I know of especially for 50th birthdays. However, I suggest anyone celebrating a birthday at Disneyland to head for City Hall on Main Street and break them the news. You'll get a "It's My Birthday" sticker to wear for the day, which seems to get you extra-friendly service from cast members and an occasional unexpected discount or dessert from restaurants. You also can get a special congratulations phone call from Goofy.

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Bronx, NY: What is the best Disney Hotel to stay in for adults only or is there such a thing? Is there a time of year when the Disney Cruise line has less children on board?

David Koening: There are no adult-only Disney resorts, but it does seem that certain ones have a higher percentage of children than others. Lots of kids: All Stars, Pop Century, Boardwalk, Beach Club, Wilderness Lodge. Fewer kids: Dolphin, Swan, Grand Floridian.
Disney Cruises during off-peak weeks (when many children are in school) also seem to have a lower percentage of kids. Just make sure you get the second seating for dinner!

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Jonesboro,AR: When is the best time of year for two.....ah, adults, yeah sure!,to go to Disney World??????

David Koening: There's plenty to do all year round for adults. The highest adult-to-kid ratio is probably in October during Epcot's Food & Wine Festival and in the spring during Epcot's Flower & Garden Festival.
And, again, to avoid children, go during off-peak hours.

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Gaithersburg, MD: The last (and my first!) time we went to Disney World, we went with my sister-in-law, who has very expensive taste. The trip was fun, but very pricey. Now that our family is even larger, we'd like to plan another trip...but without breaking the bank. The kids' ages range from high school, middle school, elementary school and preschool, so we're limited to dates when they're not in school.

Thanks!
Karen

David Koening: Karen, unfortunately there's no such thing as a truly cheap Disney vacation. You certainly can do it on a budget, but it's still Disney. I'd look into the new package deals Disney World has begun to offer, such as through AAA, that include park admission, on-site lodgings, transportation to and from the airport, and (in some cases) all your meals!
There are some decent prices, especially if you're content to stay in one of Disney's economy resorts.

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Bethlehem, PA: I am planning to bring my family to Disney in April. We would like to do 10 days and include all of the WDW parks, at least 1 day at Universal and Sea World and take a day trip to Daytona. We want to know what the best passes would be for all parks and where a party of 8 (6 adults and 2 children - 1 is 3 and the other is 12)can stay inside the park where the cost would not be outrageous. One room preferably, but not at the All Star Resorts or Pop Century. One day would be spent at one of the water parks. I am really confused about all of the new "ticket" offerings. Also, understand that there is a new meal plan...is it worth it to use this???

Thanks for your help...S. Karonias

David Koening: Disney's new "Magic Your Way" tickets are improvements financially (although a heckuva lot more complicated) for visitors who want to spend a long time on Disney property. Basically, the more days you spend at Disney parks, the drastically cheaper the price per day. Each day is also a little more expensive if you want to add on a water park or two, want to hop between parks in the same day, and/or want any unused days not to expire. (My family, for example, is buying the 10-day no-expiration pass for a five-day trip next summer, and we'll use the other five days the following summer. It's cheaper than two five-day passes.)
The meal plan can be a great deal, especially if you like three full meals a day. I'd pass if you're content to eat a granola bar for breakfast in your room and other meals on the run.

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Lake Placid, Florida: You guys are great! I love Disney as much as you, and visit VERY often! Where do you both live? What is your favorite Disney place to be?

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Note:This story was accurate when it was published. Please be sure to confirm all rates and details directly with the companies in question before planning your trip.
 

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