Terra Nova Guy and the Raiders of the Lost Park - an August 2018 TR *COMPLETE* 4/28

pkondz

. . Dis Dad #797 . . Hoping to get lucky
Joined
Mar 9, 2007
I don’t have any numbers on that, but it’s been mentioned in local media. Also at our supermarket the soft drink shelves are about 3/4 Pepsi products.
Have no idea here... but suspect Coke is ahead.

I was glad to have accomplished it, but we really didn’t need so much candy.
of course you do. Don't be silly.

Yeah it kind of works. Getting home at 4am is not fun, but it’s either wake up stupid early in Orlando or get home stupid late
Yep. I'm choosing a bit later for my return flight this time.
 

docsoliday1

DIS Dad #834 Cubs, Dolphins fan forever
Joined
Mar 12, 2008
August 27th – Day 10 – We Have HOW MANY Meal Credits?!

Twenty-one. Can you believe that? Twenty frickin’ one meal credits left on our last morning in WDW. Eight would be used up with breakfast and lunch. But what to do with the other 13? If anyone has forgotten – because it was months ago I started this thing – we had the free dining promotion this trip. It obviously wasn’t working for us.

We did the dining plan once and this was exactly what we had...tons of credits left over and tons of stuff we didn't want just to use them up.

To get rid of a few meal credits, we all had our last Mickey waffles of the trip for breakfast.

Now, THAT is a good use of meal credits. Mmmm, Micky waffles. Especially with EXTRA BACON!!!

We had done most of our packing the night before, but went to finish it off and check out of the room by 11:00am. Our Tragical Express was not until 2:30pm. We prefer taking a later flight home on our last day. That gives us the morning to pack, unwind, and say a leisurely good bye, instead of waking up at the crack of dawn and rushing to the airport. We left our bags with bell services and took a stroll around the resort.
Since most of the time we drove, it was almost always a get up crazy early so we could get home at a decent hour. Since it often involved me going to work or kids going to school the next day, it was even more important. Eventually we decided to start going home on Saturday so we had a day to recover before work/school.

Good picture.

Side note: DW and I developed an addiction to Cherry Coke this trip. Where I live, Pepsi outsells Coke by a significant margin. You rarely see a Coke vending machine around here. You can come by Coke easy enough in the supermarkets, but the flavoured Coke like cherry, is hard to come by. We tried it near the beginning of the trip and I had to go over and get a mug every night. We had 3 or 4 mugs of it this last morning.
Ya know they make Cherry Pepsi too? I've always preferred Pepsi over Coke, which made living in Atlanta challenging (everyone kept telling me it's Coke country)
The other option is you could get some cherry syrup and add it to regular.

With that, our long awaited trip was at an end. We had successfully raided our “lost park”, happy for the wonderful memories we made, but sad it was over.

I’ll be back with one last post to wrap it up!
Great memories and TR Jeff. Always sad to have to leave.
 

Terra Nova guy

DIS Dad #811 Newfoundland, Canada
Joined
Nov 11, 2014
Now, THAT is a good use of meal credits. Mmmm, Micky waffles. Especially with EXTRA BACON!!!
Good use in terms of enjoying the meal, for sure. Although if you are looking at getting your money's worth, it's not a good idea. Yet another reason why I would never pay for the meal plan.

Ya know they make Cherry Pepsi too?
I'm not sure I've ever noticed cherry Pepsi around here. It seems to be a very southern thing.
I also prefer Pepsi over Coke. My drink of choice on a Friday night is spiced rum and Pepsi.
 
  • Terra Nova guy

    DIS Dad #811 Newfoundland, Canada
    Joined
    Nov 11, 2014
    Raiders of the Lost Park – Final Thoughts

    First of all, thank you to everyone who has joined my report, commented, given a like, or just read along. I truly appreciate you taking your time to read about my little adventure. I hope I was able to entertain you a bit with my first trip report. It was a big time commitment but also a lot of fun to relive my family's memories of the trip and definitely worthwhile.



    Overall thoughts on Resort:


    I was perfectly content with All-Star Music. I wasn’t my preferred choice, since we had become used to Moderate resorts and missed the extra space and double sink, but we made it work. In case you forget, I booked ASMu because we could get the free dining deal. For a family of four, it’s tight to cram suitcases and bathroom stuff into a single sink and closet, but we managed. We also didn’t spend a whole lot of time in the room. If you like relaxing on the balcony after a long day, this is not the resort for you. Our room was nice and quiet, being in the 3rd floor by parking. It was away from the main pool, which from a noise perspective is a benefit.


    Overall thoughts on food:


    Free dining is nice for the savings. For 4 of us, it was a $2000 value. I couldn’t turn that down. Yes, I’m aware I paid rack rate for ASMu room, but I came out on top money wise.


    But I am not a fan of the dining plan. I like to have flexibility and do both QS and TS. After a couple days trying to eat both lunch and supper, we realized my family just doesn’t like two big meals. We like breakfast and supper, with snacks in between. From a value perspective, breakfast doesn’t make sense on the dining plan. Unless it was free, I would not get the dining plan again.


    As for the ASMu resort food court, I enjoyed breakfast, although had mostly Mickey waffles. Lunch/Dinner was…meh. Not bad overall (although a couple misses) but not great. Just fine. The Moderate food courts we’ve visited had more selection outside of burgers, nuggets, and pizza.



    Overall thoughts on transportation:


    We had no major problems with buses, other than a few waits that were longer than we would have liked. I really did like having a rental car for going to the parks (other than MK). Relying on your own schedule rather than Disney buses’ schedule is refreshing. Despite the cost, I would seriously consider having a rental car again.


    As for our next trip? I have no idea.


    The first problem is finances. The cost of flying four of us to Orlando was $3000 (Canadian). Even in US$ it’s still not cheap. When you add in the cost of everything else, I need a breather for a year or two.


    The second problem is when to go. Years ago I didn’t mind pulling the girls out of school to travel at (slightly) less crowded times in April and October. Since they are older now, it is harder for them to recover when they miss school time, especially in Brianna’s case who is now in her first year of university. That leaves the summer, but the August heat really hit us hard. If we do a summer trip again, I might actually consider staying offsite in a rental house with private pool, so we can rest and take plenty of breaks in between park time. To be honest, I find less benefit to staying on site. You can see with this trip, we rarely took advantage of EMH – and that time is cut back compared to what it used to be. The 60 day FP is nice, but something I might be willing to sacrifice. Of course, there are many resorts I would love to stay at, so I have no idea. Maybe stay both on site and off site? Arrghh, I don’t know.


    Well, I have lots to consider before another trip. I have a strong desire to visit WDW in 2021 for the 50th, like most of us do I expect. Can I wait 3 years for another trip? Well, 2019 is too early for my bank account and I don’t want to deal with the Galaxy’s Edge crowds in 2020, so it may well be 2021 or perhaps even later. I love Walt Disney World, but adventure is out there and I would like to see other places too.


    After all, there’s a great big beautiful tomorrow shining at the end of every day. I know that one day I will stroll down Main Street USA with some dust in my eye and a smile in my heart. Until then, see you real soon.
     

    docsoliday1

    DIS Dad #834 Cubs, Dolphins fan forever
    Joined
    Mar 12, 2008
    Raiders of the Lost Park – Final Thoughts

    First of all, thank you to everyone who has joined my report, commented, given a like, or just read along. I truly appreciate you taking your time to read about my little adventure. I hope I was able to entertain you a bit with my first trip report. It was a big time commitment but also a lot of fun to relive my family's memories of the trip and definitely worthwhile.

    Sorry I didn't participate more. With the move and the new job and trying to make the most of my AP, my dis time has been reduced and most times I can only use my phone. Today is one of those days where I can actually use the computer and multiquote.



    I was perfectly content with All-Star Music. I wasn’t my preferred choice, since we had become used to Moderate resorts and missed the extra space and double sink, but we made it work. In case you forget, I booked ASMu because we could get the free dining deal. For a family of four, it’s tight to cram suitcases and bathroom stuff into a single sink and closet, but we managed. We also didn’t spend a whole lot of time in the room. If you like relaxing on the balcony after a long day, this is not the resort for you. Our room was nice and quiet, being in the 3rd floor by parking. It was away from the main pool, which from a noise perspective is a benefit.
    We did a value resort (Pop) in September. It was tight with 3 of us (Me, DW and DD), so I can only imagine with 4 of you and 3 females. My hat's off to you sir. We're DVC members, so it was a BIG shock from what we're used to.


    Overall thoughts on food:

    Free dining is nice for the savings. For 4 of us, it was a $2000 value. I couldn’t turn that down. Yes, I’m aware I paid rack rate for ASMu room, but I came out on top money wise.
    For me, it's not worth it and considering you pay rack rate for the room, it's not free. If you came up on top money wise, that's good!


    But I am not a fan of the dining plan. I like to have flexibility and do both QS and TS. After a couple days trying to eat both lunch and supper, we realized my family just doesn’t like two big meals. We like breakfast and supper, with snacks in between. From a value perspective, breakfast doesn’t make sense on the dining plan. Unless it was free, I would not get the dining plan again.
    I'm right there with you. As I already mentioned, we did it ONCE. No intentions of doing it again.


    That leaves the summer, but the August heat really hit us hard. If we do a summer trip again, I might actually consider staying offsite in a rental house with private pool, so we can rest and take plenty of breaks in between park time.
    I would offer you staying at my house, but I don't have a pool :laughing:


    After all, there’s a great big beautiful tomorrow shining at the end of every day. I know that one day I will stroll down Main Street USA with some dust in my eye and a smile in my heart. Until then, see you real soon.
    Pesky dust.
     

    pkondz

    . . Dis Dad #797 . . Hoping to get lucky
    Joined
    Mar 9, 2007
    It was a big time commitment
    Found that out did you.
    Yes, it certainly is. And I've seen many, many TRs started and abandoned over the years.
    It sounds like nothing but fun at first, but... you need to really be committed to it, to do it.

    Thank you for giving us that.

    I was perfectly content with All-Star Music.
    :) Been there a few times. It's my go-to resort now, usually.
    I'm just not there very much, so...

    Free dining is nice for the savings. For 4 of us, it was a $2000 value. I couldn’t turn that down. Yes, I’m aware I paid rack rate for ASMu room, but I came out on top money wise.
    Agree with this. I won't do free dining when I solo... but it was a Godsend when I went with the family.

    The first problem is finances. The cost of flying four of us to Orlando was $3000 (Canadian). Even in US$ it’s still not cheap. When you add in the cost of everything else, I need a breather for a year or two.
    I get that! Also why we drove with the family that one time.
     

    disneyAndi14

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Jan 1, 2014
    Thanks Jeff for the fun report, I really enjoyed following along!

    I agree, the dining plan is not for us either, we like to share and not feel tied down to the plan

    Disney is getting crazy expensive, I have budgeted for my next 2 trips and will need a big raise to take more, lol!

    I am not opposed to trying the DS hotels in the future.

    We are doing a Disney Cruise in January 2020, this will be new for us!
     
  • missangelalexis

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Apr 27, 2012
    I really enjoyed reading about your trip- thank you for sharing!!

    Disney trips are not cheap by any means, and I can imagine even harder for a family of 4! Going for the 50th + when the Galaxy's Edge hype dies down a little sounds like a good idea. Hopefully you can make it happen!!
     

    cinderaimee

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Sep 26, 2016
    Thank you so much for taking the time to write this report. I've really enjoyed your writing and your perspective. I have an August trip booked for this year and I feel like I've gotten a little preview for what I might expect for the weather and crowds.

    It's been really fun following along!
     

    Terra Nova guy

    DIS Dad #811 Newfoundland, Canada
    Joined
    Nov 11, 2014
    Sorry I didn't participate more. With the move and the new job and trying to make the most of my AP, my dis time has been reduced and most times I can only use my phone. Today is one of those days where I can actually use the computer and multiquote.
    No need for apologies Doc, I know life has been busy for you. I'm happy you were able to read along and participate as much as you did.

    I would offer you staying at my house, but I don't have a pool :laughing:
    Knowing you the way I do, I know you are probably somewhat serious when you say that :)
    I can't ever imagine imposing on somebody that much, but whenever I do take another trip to Orlando, I hope we can meet up.

    Found that out did you.
    Yes, it certainly is. And I've seen many, many TRs started and abandoned over the years.
    It sounds like nothing but fun at first, but... you need to really be committed to it, to do it.

    Thank you for giving us that.
    You're welcome, and thanks for following along and making it enjoyable for me too.
    I can't imagine leaving it half done. I understand some people just have life take over, but it would bother me so much.

    Thanks Jeff for the fun report, I really enjoyed following along!
    You're welcome, and thank you for joining in and making this fun for me too. I think you we the most enthusiastic person answering my questions! Thank you for that :)

    Disney trips are not cheap by any means, and I can imagine even harder for a family of 4! Going for the 50th + when the Galaxy's Edge hype dies down a little sounds like a good idea. Hopefully you can make it happen!!
    I hope so! I'm sure we all want to get there during the 50th year.

    Thank you so much for taking the time to write this report. I've really enjoyed your writing and your perspective. I have an August trip booked for this year and I feel like I've gotten a little preview for what I might expect for the weather and crowds.
    Thank you for joining in, it really makes the effort worthwhile knowing people are reading! I hope I was able to give you some insight into your August trip.
     

    pkondz

    . . Dis Dad #797 . . Hoping to get lucky
    Joined
    Mar 9, 2007
    You're welcome, and thanks for following along and making it enjoyable for me too.
    I can't imagine leaving it half done. I understand some people just have life take over, but it would bother me so much.
    Then you have permission to start another, next time. ;)
     
  • Captain_Oblivious

    DIS Dad #257
    Joined
    Nov 10, 2008
    Twenty-one. Can you believe that? Twenty frickin’ one meal credits left on our last morning in WDW. Eight would be used up with breakfast and lunch. But what to do with the other 13? If anyone has forgotten – because it was months ago I started this thing – we had the free dining promotion this trip. It obviously wasn’t working for us.
    Yikes. That's a lot of work to do!

    Side note: DW and I developed an addiction to Cherry Coke this trip. Where I live, Pepsi outsells Coke by a significant margin. You rarely see a Coke vending machine around here. You can come by Coke easy enough in the supermarkets, but the flavoured Coke like cherry, is hard to come by.
    Huh. Interesting. People tend to get territorial with their brown sugar water down here. Personally, I don't much care; I'll drink either.

    After lunch we picked up some more treats and snacks to use up our meal credits. Although it was a ridiculous amount of candy, we managed to use up all our meal credits!
    I'm impressed! Job well done.

    With that, our long awaited trip was at an end. We had successfully raided our “lost park”, happy for the wonderful memories we made, but sad it was over.
    I know that feeling.

    Free dining is nice for the savings. For 4 of us, it was a $2000 value. I couldn’t turn that down. Yes, I’m aware I paid rack rate for ASMu room, but I came out on top money wise.
    That's the key.

    From a value perspective, breakfast doesn’t make sense on the dining plan. Unless it was free, I would not get the dining plan again.
    Yeah, I've done the math, and never found it to be reasonable to pay for the dining plan out of pocket. If it's free, sure. Otherwise, hard pass.

    The first problem is finances. The cost of flying four of us to Orlando was $3000 (Canadian). Even in US$ it’s still not cheap. When you add in the cost of everything else, I need a breather for a year or two.
    And it ain't getting any cheaper.

    Years ago I didn’t mind pulling the girls out of school to travel at (slightly) less crowded times in April and October. Since they are older now, it is harder for them to recover when they miss school time, especially in Brianna’s case who is now in her first year of university.
    I get that, too. We're in the same boat. Doubly so since my wife is a teacher.

    I love Walt Disney World, but adventure is out there and I would like to see other places too.
    Truth!
     

    kastoney

    Disney foodie served with a side of sarcasm
    Joined
    Jul 18, 2010
    Thanks for sharing Jeff! Still sad we physically missed you but glad to have followed along on the report.
     

    amazingact21

    Upendi
    Joined
    Nov 6, 2010
    Wonderful recap! Especially the breakdown of ASMu and potentially staying off site next trip. I think your thought process for staying away until at least 2021 is sound; it can be hard to take long breaks between Disney trips, but I think the next few years are going to be crazy in the parks! Sometimes, it's better to not fight that battle and explore other destinations in the meantime. Thanks for writing this report and sharing your family's Disney experience!
     

    suse66

    Mickey Bars should be a daily food group!
    Joined
    Sep 3, 2008
    First of all, thank you to everyone who has joined my report, commented, given a like, or just read along. I truly appreciate you taking your time to read about my little adventure. I hope I was able to entertain you a bit with my first trip report. It was a big time commitment but also a lot of fun to relive my family's memories of the trip and definitely worthwhile.
    Thanks for taking the time to write about your adventures! It was very entertaining and I enjoyed following along. :)

    But I am not a fan of the dining plan. I like to have flexibility and do both QS and TS. After a couple days trying to eat both lunch and supper, we realized my family just doesn’t like two big meals. We like breakfast and supper, with snacks in between. From a value perspective, breakfast doesn’t make sense on the dining plan. Unless it was free, I would not get the dining plan again.
    I completely agree. The dining plan does not work for me at all whether I am on a solo trip or travelling with my DH and boys.

    We had no major problems with buses, other than a few waits that were longer than we would have liked. I really did like having a rental car for going to the parks (other than MK). Relying on your own schedule rather than Disney buses’ schedule is refreshing. Despite the cost, I would seriously consider having a rental car again.
    I never done the rental car thing. We drove down from Ontario back in 2015 and enjoyed having our car for heading to the water parks and Disney Springs. Other than that we were happy to take Disney transport.

    The first problem is finances. The cost of flying four of us to Orlando was $3000 (Canadian). Even in US$ it’s still not cheap. When you add in the cost of everything else, I need a breather for a year or two.
    $3000 is a good price from Nfld (sadly). Air travel is SO expensive in Canada. Even going to PEI from Toronto, I am lucky to find a ticket under $500.

    Maybe stay both on site and off site? Arrghh, I don’t know.
    A split between on and off property sounds like a good idea. The only thing I did not like staying offsite was having to go to the TTC to get to MK. That took a huge amount of time.

    After all, there’s a great big beautiful tomorrow shining at the end of every day. I know that one day I will stroll down Main Street USA with some dust in my eye and a smile in my heart. Until then, see you real soon.
    Thank again, Jeff! It was a pleasure to follow along! :goodvibes
     

    khertz

    Proud member of the WHO DAT NATION!!
    Joined
    Aug 10, 2008
    Gotta say, I'm so glad you decided to tackle your own TR!! It was incredibly entertaining & I thoroughly enjoyed it even though I may not have been able to comment as much as I'd have liked to throughout. Hopefully you're able to make a return trip work soon enough, and I'll be all in for your second turn as a TR writer!!
     

    Terra Nova guy

    DIS Dad #811 Newfoundland, Canada
    Joined
    Nov 11, 2014
    Gotta say, I'm so glad you decided to tackle your own TR!! It was incredibly entertaining & I thoroughly enjoyed it even though I may not have been able to comment as much as I'd have liked to throughout. Hopefully you're able to make a return trip work soon enough, and I'll be all in for your second turn as a TR writer!!
    Thanks very much! I had fun writing it.
    I hope I can get another trip in soon too. I’ll have to live vicariously through yours and all the other reports until then :)
     

    MeghanEmily

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Apr 21, 2016
    Hi, Jeff! I managed to get back here and get caught up again...it only took me several months. By the way, Merida is my favourite princess as well! But we'll have to agree to disagree on Splash Mountain. :) Thanks so much for sharing your trip memories with us, and for taking a few minutes out of your trip for a quick Dismeet with me and Nathan!
     

    Steppesister

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Dec 27, 2013
    We prefer taking a later flight home on our last day. That gives us the morning to pack, unwind, and say a leisurely good bye, instead of waking up at the crack of dawn and rushing to the airport. We left our bags with bell services and took a stroll around the resort.
    ME TOO!!! I HATE leaving Disney early!

    We strolled over to All-Star Movies first, passing through the Mighty Ducks and 101 Dalmatians section.
    I totally didn't know you could walk between those resorts!!

    I was trying not to pay too much attention at that point to whatever extra money was being spent.
    Yeah, I get that. :( By the end of the trip, you KNOW you're going to have a near heart attack anyway.

    The girls had also gotten into the chocolate milkshakes which were pretty good and surprising counted as a drink with a QS meal.
    That is pretty odd!

    Although it was a ridiculous amount of candy, we managed to use up all our meal credits!
    LOL!! You're ready for Halloween now!

    We waited for the Tragical Express for a little while, noticing the sky was becoming dark and gloomy, which was a bit how we felt leaving.
    :( Awww...

    A small part of me was relieved we were not out in the parks.
    Yeah, I can see that, but those rains DO clear out the parks and wait times are fantastic!

    First of all, thank you to everyone who has joined my report, commented, given a like, or just read along. I truly appreciate you taking your time to read about my little adventure. I hope I was able to entertain you a bit with my first trip report. It was a big time commitment but also a lot of fun to relive my family's memories of the trip and definitely worthwhile.
    Loved it! It's always a pleasure to read the reports of those I consider true friends. Hopefully you will still read on mine and others who seem to "hang out" together here on the Boards. :)

    I was perfectly content with All-Star Music. I wasn’t my preferred choice, since we had become used to Moderate resorts and missed the extra space and double sink, but we made it work. In case you forget, I booked ASMu because we could get the free dining deal. For a family of four, it’s tight to cram suitcases and bathroom stuff into a single sink and closet, but we managed. We also didn’t spend a whole lot of time in the room. If you like relaxing on the balcony after a long day, this is not the resort for you. Our room was nice and quiet, being in the 3rd floor by parking. It was away from the main pool, which from a noise perspective is a benefit.
    I think it'd totally depend on that touring style you have. I AM one that likes coffee on my balcony each morning and love the space and more tranquil feel of the mods (esp POFQ) but for a quick, down and dirty flash trip, I can totally see a value too!

    But I am not a fan of the dining plan. I like to have flexibility and do both QS and TS.
    Me too!

    As for our next trip? I have no idea.
    Hopefully soon!

    That leaves the summer, but the August heat really hit us hard.
    Heck, Jeff, this last trip the MAY heat hit me hard. I've only been on one trip in January when the heat wasn't suffocating. LOL!

    To be honest, I find less benefit to staying on site. You can see with this trip, we rarely took advantage of EMH
    Depends on your touring style I guess. I love to get up early and hit the parks in the cool(er) of the day then a break before dinner. EMH is totally worth it to me, but I can also see how it'd be harder by a long shot with more than solo or for a couple without kids.

    Well, I have lots to consider before another trip. I have a strong desire to visit WDW in 2021 for the 50th, like most of us do I expect.
    I think the next big EPIC Girls trip will be Fall of 2021, so maybe you could go then and you could meet many of us who read your threads and you know. ??

    I love Walt Disney World, but adventure is out there and I would like to see other places too.
    This.

    Still have some big places on my bucket list. Sigh.... just not enough time or money.
     

    Terra Nova guy

    DIS Dad #811 Newfoundland, Canada
    Joined
    Nov 11, 2014
    I totally didn't know you could walk between those resorts!!
    Yes, you can. Music is in the middle, and I guess we were less than 10 minutes walk to the lobby of either Movies or Sports. Not that there's any huge attraction to going there, but the refillable mugs work at any All-Star resort and you can use the pools at either. Of course there would be more incentive if it was a Beach Club/Yacht Club type pool.

    Loved it! It's always a pleasure to read the reports of those I consider true friends. Hopefully you will still read on mine and others who seem to "hang out" together here on the Boards. :)
    I will definitely keep on keeping on. I hope to keep up to date as much as I can on everyone's reports.

    I think the next big EPIC Girls trip will be Fall of 2021, so maybe you could go then and you could meet many of us who read your threads and you know. ??
    I am very interest din that idea. Not sure what my situation will be or if it will work out, but certainly something I will keep in mind.

    Still have some big places on my bucket list. Sigh.... just not enough time or money.
    Ditto.
     


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