Ugh - how painful will this be?

gopherit

I'm not in the book, you know.
Joined
Sep 21, 2003
First a small rant - I really hate how Disney presses you to have all your decisions in hand months in advance. I'm lucky these days to know what I need to do in the next 8 hours. And planning for a larger group - oye vey. Not the stress I signed on for when we joined DVC back in 1999!

So that aside - I'm planning an Xmas trip for our fam of 6, and being a giving gopher, I'm allowing each of the three 18+ aged gopher pups the chance to "bring a friend" (at very low, if any, cost to friend). It's sort of an Xmas gift to my 3 hard-to-shop for elder pups. Right now - I have us booked for a short stay @ Kidani in a "close-quarters but it says it sleeps 9" 2BR, then 5 nights in a BW Grand Villa, then one final night in a Bay Lake Tower (another "it says it sleeps 9 so we gonna test that theory" experience) before flying back to TX just before Xmas.

And now... I'm fearing... all those resorts in 8 nights.... will it be nuts?!? 🥜:crazy:🥜

With 9 people in tow (me and DH, our 10 yr old DS, and the 6 "20-somethings"), I was looking for a spacious accommodation. Kids had stated their preferences (last trip was in a SSR 3BR GV, so they wanted to go back to home resort BW, or to AK, WL or BLT). But I couldn't lock in on dates until university and job calendars were set, so earliest I could start booking was ~ 9 mos out. (Yeah... for xmas. I know, i know. what was I thinking...) I immediately reserved a block of available days at our home resort (BW) but even then couldn't get a whole week in a GV. My hope was to change at 7 mos window to 7 nts in a Kidani GV, or half-n-half it. But it never worked out. There was always a day missing, here or there, often right smack dab in the middle. Tried waitlist, hoping the opening of Riveria part way through our trip would help open up other resorts - but nope, it just got crazier - and as stuff started to book up, I admit it - I began to panic and took whatever I could get my grubby lil gopher paws on. It took three weeks and (I'm convinced) an act of God just to get the BLT 2BR for the last night of our stay! If I'm gonna break up the trip, I prefer that there's a long stay in there somewhere, and no more than 2 resorts in a week. So much for the latter preference. I chose Kidani and Bay Tower as the "bookends" to the BW villa stay only because (a) they were available & sleep 9 people and (b) they have 3 bathrooms (critical with that many people). I also took a hard look at HOW those 9 people would be sleeping (preference being queen beds, and as few "dinky pull out" beds / sleeper sofas as possible). At least the bulk of the trip will be in the spacious BW GV. I could not obtain 3BR villas at OKW or SSR or other resorts for the "bookend" nights. I even looked at splitting the herd, if need be, but by this time - well you know how booked up Xmas time is. Pickins are slim. And at this point waitlist is tough because you have to put in what you would "cancel" if it became available. I still cruise the reservations page... but feel pretty sure what I have is what I have.

So I'm trying to be positive... thinking "ok, these are young able bodied people, even if I'm not, lol... change is good... they get to try 3 resorts, not just one"... and if that's not enough of an upside, well we are now staying 8 nights (instead of just 7), since I saved a few points going with 2BRs versus a GV for whole stay. More time is ALWAYS good, right?

Are there any other perks to this many resorts in a short span of time? I wasn't planning on doing a dining plan (thinking TIW with this sized crowd). Should I reconsider (are there perks to doing a dining plan on one segment of stay? I know last trip I had the option to do dining plan at one resort stay, and not the other. I'm trying to coordinate park days to where we are staying (do AK while we're at Kidani; do Hollywood and Epcot while at BW; etc.) Or is that of no benefit? I'm also trying to prepare them for how to pack to make this as little hassle as possible (use Disney Magic to move that luggage to next resort, just have it ready to go that morning as we leave the resort.)

If there's any other perks or possibilities - let me know - I'm all ears (Mickey-Mouse sized ones, at that.)
 

NoTime42

Mouseketeer
Joined
May 28, 2019
Biggest problem with AK while at Kidani is getting FoP FP+ early in a trip.

Dining plan credits are good on check-in day through midnight after checkout.
If you got a DDP at Kidani, everyone would have reusable mugs for the trip (they activate for 14 days, not a specific length of stay)
DDxP might work for that day giving you (6) TS credits to use the 1st (3) days.

I had a trip with a few (2) night stays, then move. For us, we never felt settled in a place. But, if you aren’t managing kid luggage, then I’d imagine they will survive living out of their suitcase for bookend nights.
 
Last edited:

cruisin5

DIS Veteran
Joined
Feb 21, 2001
I'd plan on an inflatable on the floor of the master for DS10 when you are in the 2-bedrooms. At least you'll have a great bathroom and a balcony!

But, it's a great plan for a once in a lifetime trip.

TiW is great, especially if they are drinkers.

Three resorts in 8 nights is not crazy, especially with 5 in a GV for the middle stay.

Plan your park days around your moves or where you are staying.

Make sure the pups visit Jellyrolls.

I'm not a fan of the dining plan, you can order delivery of a feast of pizza and wings for a night in the GV. Pups can uber/lyft to go out at night. I think they may find the DP restrictive unless you do it for the first or last night with specific plans in mind. Obtaining reservations for 9 can be difficult too.
 
  • SG131

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Apr 3, 2017
    Most likely TIW will be your best value. I just unintentionally had 4 different hotels in an 11 day trip (it was supposed to be 3 until SW canceled a flight), and it worked out better than I expected. Part of the reasoning was piecing together a last min DVC stay for the back half of the trip. Just be super organized when you pack and it should be fine. By the last transfer you really will only need a few things pulled out of the suitcase. Packing cubes are your friend.

    It is really nice to plan parks based on what you are closest to. The less time on the bus the better. I purposely planned my Feb stay to be a split of poly and home resort of boardwalk for ease of transportation. Each resort is so different I’m sure the kids will love it.
     

    DISDiversion

    Always planning
    Joined
    Sep 7, 2019
    First a small rant - I really hate how Disney presses you to have all your decisions in hand months in advance. I'm lucky these days to know what I need to do in the next 8 hours. And planning for a larger group - oye vey. Not the stress I signed on for when we joined DVC back in 1999!

    So that aside - I'm planning an Xmas trip for our fam of 6, and being a giving gopher, I'm allowing each of the three 18+ aged gopher pups the chance to "bring a friend" (at very low, if any, cost to friend). It's sort of an Xmas gift to my 3 hard-to-shop for elder pups. Right now - I have us booked for a short stay @ Kidani in a "close-quarters but it says it sleeps 9" 2BR, then 5 nights in a BW Grand Villa, then one final night in a Bay Lake Tower (another "it says it sleeps 9 so we gonna test that theory" experience) before flying back to TX just before Xmas.

    And now... I'm fearing... all those resorts in 8 nights.... will it be nuts?!? 🥜:crazy:🥜

    With 9 people in tow (me and DH, our 10 yr old DS, and the 6 "20-somethings"), I was looking for a spacious accommodation. Kids had stated their preferences (last trip was in a SSR 3BR GV, so they wanted to go back to home resort BW, or to AK, WL or BLT). But I couldn't lock in on dates until university and job calendars were set, so earliest I could start booking was ~ 9 mos out. (Yeah... for xmas. I know, i know. what was I thinking...) I immediately reserved a block of available days at our home resort (BW) but even then couldn't get a whole week in a GV. My hope was to change at 7 mos window to 7 nts in a Kidani GV, or half-n-half it. But it never worked out. There was always a day missing, here or there, often right smack dab in the middle. Tried waitlist, hoping the opening of Riveria part way through our trip would help open up other resorts - but nope, it just got crazier - and as stuff started to book up, I admit it - I began to panic and took whatever I could get my grubby lil gopher paws on. It took three weeks and (I'm convinced) an act of God just to get the BLT 2BR for the last night of our stay! If I'm gonna break up the trip, I prefer that there's a long stay in there somewhere, and no more than 2 resorts in a week. So much for the latter preference. I chose Kidani and Bay Tower as the "bookends" to the BW villa stay only because (a) they were available & sleep 9 people and (b) they have 3 bathrooms (critical with that many people). I also took a hard look at HOW those 9 people would be sleeping (preference being queen beds, and as few "dinky pull out" beds / sleeper sofas as possible). At least the bulk of the trip will be in the spacious BW GV. I could not obtain 3BR villas at OKW or SSR or other resorts for the "bookend" nights. I even looked at splitting the herd, if need be, but by this time - well you know how booked up Xmas time is. Pickins are slim. And at this point waitlist is tough because you have to put in what you would "cancel" if it became available. I still cruise the reservations page... but feel pretty sure what I have is what I have.

    So I'm trying to be positive... thinking "ok, these are young able bodied people, even if I'm not, lol... change is good... they get to try 3 resorts, not just one"... and if that's not enough of an upside, well we are now staying 8 nights (instead of just 7), since I saved a few points going with 2BRs versus a GV for whole stay. More time is ALWAYS good, right?

    Are there any other perks to this many resorts in a short span of time? I wasn't planning on doing a dining plan (thinking TIW with this sized crowd). Should I reconsider (are there perks to doing a dining plan on one segment of stay? I know last trip I had the option to do dining plan at one resort stay, and not the other. I'm trying to coordinate park days to where we are staying (do AK while we're at Kidani; do Hollywood and Epcot while at BW; etc.) Or is that of no benefit? I'm also trying to prepare them for how to pack to make this as little hassle as possible (use Disney Magic to move that luggage to next resort, just have it ready to go that morning as we leave the resort.)

    If there's any other perks or possibilities - let me know - I'm all ears (Mickey-Mouse sized ones, at that.)
    Okay, first of all - what a great parent you are!! This will be a wonderful memory for them, and teaches them generosity. While it's nice to stay in one spot, the change will have advantages too! I've travelled with a large family on several occasions. I think they will love seeing all of the different resorts (and dining options and swimming pools!). I recommend 1) Packing cubes for everyone (different color for each person if possible) to make things more efficient - maybe cubes can be an early Xmas gift? 2) Refillable mugs for everyone (also color coded, or bring a sharpie to label after purchase) 3) TIW for trip - dining plans are nice but too complicated keeping track for everyone 4) Use Disney magic to move luggage but keep your swimsuit and essentials in your daypack in case there is a delay checking in or receiving luggage 5) Encourage them to 'pack light' - because you will have access to washer/dryers. Remember - youngsters can handle change better than us older folks, so it's unlikely to stress them. We went for Xmas a few years ago and it was great. You're going to have so much fun!
     

    KAT4DISNEY

    Glad to be a test subject
    Joined
    Mar 17, 2008
    Don't give up on the waitlist either! You have waitlisted for BWV GV for the first and the last night, yes? Fingers crossed you can get one of those nights.

    I can't call it ideal but it won't be awful with a good plan and everyone gets to be responsible for their own luggage so that helps. I would normally recommend on planning parks based a lot on your location but agree that FOP will be tough to get the first day so then I'd make it a visit to a park that is close to BWV - either Epcot or DHS and then plan AK on a day as soon as you can get at FOP FP. Finish at MK with the walking access to BLT. And fill in the rest you want to do while at BWV.
     

    Deb & Bill

    DVC-Trivia Contest, Apr-2006: Honorable Mention
    Joined
    Mar 20, 2000
    We did a week at OKW in a GV with Bill and I and nine HS graduates, both male and female. There were a few events, but for the most part, it wasn't too bad. In fact, all nine of them wanted to do it again when they graduated from college. We said no. Basically, the nine kids did their own stuff except for one breakfast that we paid for at Chef Mickey's with all 11 of us. And we had plenty of groceries in the villa so everyone could eat breakfast, lunch of dinner in the GV. The only issue was the sloppiness of the kids. Never though anyone could be such a pig. I had to greet the housekeeper at the front door with the soiled towels so they wouldn't see the mess in the bedrooms. We did order a few extra towel packs to begin with and again on the fourth day since one towel per person was a foreign concept to these kids.

    We drove two vehicles and pulled a UHaul trailer with all the luggage. So nobody had to even pay for transportation. One girl had to leave early so I drove her to the airport (before DME) and we had one less going home. A few of the parents gave us some cash to put towards the groceries.

    With only nine of you, it should be a breeze.
     

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