Sunday, October 26, 2014

What I learned from my Disney World Trip

I just got home from my much anticipated Disney World trip (see packing, planning binder, 15 step guide) and I learned a thing or two while I was there.

First, Snow White related thoughts:

I'm in love with the Seven Dwarf Mine train.  The attraction is fantastic!  I thought that I would miss the older attraction, but the combination of roller coaster and dark ride was so great that I didn't.  I also enjoyed having my photos (2) and the video appear right in my Disney photopass account with the magic band.  This worked wonderfully for me (I didn't have the same luck with another attraction-see number 3 below).

Speaking of magic band, currently there is only one Snow White related magic band item available.  You can find the evil queen in a pack with two other villains.

I was disappointed to learn that there was only one piece of merchandise related to the mine train.  It was a pin that I found in the Winnie the Pooh exit store.

Penny hunting for all the dwarfs is a real pain and a huge time killer unless you have a car.  The pennies are so spread out and taking Disney transportation is great, but it is a whole lot of transferring.  And the pennies are just about the only thing I found that are Snow White centric and exclusive to Disney World.

At Mickey's Not So Scary Halloween party, I got in the line to meet the dwarfs at 6pm and waited until about 730 to meet them.  I had read that the lines for the dwarfs never get shorter, but I found that later there were not nearly as long as the first crush.  I think I would do that differently.  I also was disappointed in the picture.  It was hard to find me among the dwarfs because I went in the back, I should have gone in the front.  Also, because the line was so long, they were really just snapping a couple and sending you on your way.  Later that night I got my picture with the hag and those turned out much better, more interaction and the photographer was able to take many more pictures.

Some other non-Snow White related thoughts:
1.  There are mug washing stations in some of the resorts.  No soap though.
It wasn't until the last day of my trip that I saw there was a sink among the soda machines in our resort food court.  Much easier than using the room sink.

2. Wild Africa Trek is worth the money twice over!
This was such an amazing experience!  I love Animal Kingdom and to get to go into backstage area?...awesome!  I loved being able to wave at the safari trucks as we stood in the hippo enclosure.  Having a chance to  sit on the savannah, also totally worth it.

3.  Memory Maker is totally worth it if you love pictures as much as me. 
Some photopass photographers go way above and beyond, others just snap photos.  Watch them interact and wait in line for ones that go all out!  Take pictures of all the ride photos.  You'll need the date and time to find missing photos.  If they are still lost they can try to find the number.  I had to call the number to try to find my Buzz Lightyear attraction photo and even with the number they were not able to find my picture.

4.  If Disney research stops you - talk to them!  You never know what they may ask or give you.
I got stopped near the end of our trip and for talking to them for an hour, I got $100 gift card!

5.  Resort hopping is a great way to dine.
I enjoyed taking a break, sitting down, and truly enjoying a meal.  When i go to sit down restaurants in park, I always feel a sense of hurry.  Like I need to eat and then get out in the park and ride more!  At the resorts, it takes that sense away and makes you relax more.

6.  If you don't use all your quick service meals, you can redeem them for snacks, but not in the gift shops.
We were there on free dinning plan.  On our last day we had three counter service meals left.  We used one for our lunch and another for sandwiches to take on the plane.  We did not get the drinks with the sandwiches(can't take them in the airport) and we found out we could get another dessert.  Upon realizing we still had one meal left, the cast member said we could redeem it for two snacks and a drink.  She said we could do that in the hotel gift shop.  However, the gift shop couldn't do it unless we went to guest service and had our meal plan changed.  The cafe in the resort, however, could do it without having to wait in the guest service line.

I will be working on Finding Snow White articles in the coming months, so stayed tuned!

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