I employed a tour information at Disney World. It was $700 for six hours, and it made our time on the park extra pleasing.

  • I took my youngsters, who’re 8, 13, and 16, to Disney World. 
  • We selected to rent a personal tour information for the day we went to Magic Kingdom and Epcot. 
  • We slept in, loved breakfast, and went to the park at midday.  

I’ve deliberate household journeys to Disney, Spain, Belize, and South Africa, all and not using a journey agent. I’ve redeemed sufficient frequent flyer miles that I do know my AAdvantage quantity by coronary heart.

So it hurts my satisfaction — and my checking account — to make this confession: I employed a personal information to assist my husband and I navigate Disney World with our three youngsters, who’re 8, 13, and 16 years outdated.

This is why I employed a personal information and why you would possibly need to

My youngest was a toddler once we final visited Disney. With the pandemic lastly within the rearview, we had been desirous to squeeze in a visit. Totally different trip schedules restricted our journey to Passover and Easter weekend, one of many busiest occasions on the parks. I apprehensive lengthy strains would depart us sizzling and grumpy. I might mastered Quick Cross on earlier journeys, however Genie+, Disney’s newer reserving system for standard rides, appeared complicated to me. I felt like we would have liked assist.

This is what it value and the way it labored

I chosen 5 Star Orlando VIP Excursions as a result of it was the most affordable — $700 for six hours; others ranged from $250 an hour to between $450 and $900 an hour for Disney’s VIP Guides — and provided afternoon begin occasions, which higher suited my household.

Our information, aptly named Mick, texted to substantiate our plans and priorities and requested to entry our Disney account. 5 Star may even e book eating and particular experiences, supplied you e book exterior Disney’s 60-day advance-reservation window.

It was definitely worth the expense

My Orlando-loving good friend says, “Disney is the place cash goes to die, however it’s price it for the recollections.” That feels true of the cash we spent on tickets, meals, Mick, Genie+, lightning lanes, and ideas — we used miles for JetBlue flights and Bonvoy factors for Swan Reserve lodge rooms. As an adventurous traveler, I do know there are extraordinary locations to discover with a Disney-level funds. However Disney journeys are milestones, and I am glad we returned with our massive youngsters.

A information made our time on the park simple, stress-free, and productive. We slept late, loved breakfast, then headed to the park round midday. After assembly Mick at 3 p.m., we rode practically each trip, averted lengthy strains, and loved the fireworks.

We visited Hollywood Studios on our personal the subsequent day. We did positive, however it was clear Mick was a professional at navigating the parks. He stayed with our youngest whereas we rode intense rides and helped us procure meals and snacks. Once we did not have Mick’s assist, the strains had been excruciatingly lengthy — 90 minutes for Huge Thunder Mountain and Toy Story Mania.

This is what I realized from the professional

I need to share what I realized from our tour, so I will help others who aren’t capable of spend the additional cash for a tour information on their journey.

First, you must create an account within the My Disney Expertise app. Use the “pin” icon to analysis accommodations and browse sights filtered by park, age, top requirement, character experiences, and so on. This helped us plan our day and resolve on our must-dos.

If you understand you will not have the ability to stand in lengthy strains together with your youngsters, you can purchase Genie+ — it is $15 to $35 per particular person per day relying on how busy the park can be — beginning at 12 a.m. on the day of your park go to and start reserving timed entry (or “lightning lanes”) at 7 a.m.

Mick additionally beneficial prioritizing sights on the “Plan your day” app web page so that you’re able to e book Genie+ or a minimum of plan your route when you’re within the park.

You must set your alarm for midnight, then go to mattress early. At midnight — or, on the newest, 6:30 a.m. — buy Genie+. At 6:45 a.m., open the Genie+ Suggestions Board. Click on in your most-wanted attraction, then exit to the principle display. Whenever you refresh the app at 7 a.m., the attraction ought to seem on the high of your display. Reserve a lightning-lane time for that trip. When you scan into the trip, you possibly can e book your subsequent Genie+ reservation.

If you wish to expertise newer rides like Tron and Guardians of the Galaxy, buy particular person lightning-lane passes, then head to the park.

And, lastly, as my favourite pediatrician shared with me, the trick to Disney is to depart simply earlier than you begin to hate it.