Planning a visit to Disney World with others

Even before we became “Extra WDW Magic,” we were really into planning trips to Walt Disney World. Our first “REAL” visit to Walt Disney World (in other words, the first visit when we sort of kinda knew what to expect, 2002… it was also the first visit when we were somewhat responsible for someone else enjoying a visit to Walt Disney World).

For that trip in 2002, our “guest” was Jenevia (my god-parent’s granddaughter or as we say, our god-niece). At the time, Jenevia was 16; she hadn’t been to Disney World since she was 3 or 4 (?). We were paying for her trip and wanted to make sure that all three of us enjoyed every moment as much as possible. Without consulting her very much, we planned where to eat, what to ride, etc… I even made trifold brochures with our plans and food options listed on it.

Since 2002, we’ve done more trips with friends and family – some more successful than others. And, we’ve gotten better over the years with doing up plans. We’ve learned to tailor THEIR vacations based on THEIR likes/dislikes not just on what we think they like.

We have two friends coming to visit in early February. They’re both somewhere north of 55, they have grandkids, they are a great couple, and they’ve never been to Disney World (or if they have, it was years ago when their kids were young and the experience was NOT what it’s going to be as adults without kids).

Here is the condensed version of questions tailored to C&J:

  1. What are your sleep habits when you’re on vacation? (this is to see if Morning or Evening Magic Hours make sense or are even necessary – why? greatly impacts scheduling) – what is your desire to do versus your desire to relax?
  2. Flights? (this is to determine if park passes are needed for any partial days)
  3. What do you prefer, live entertainment versus rides? (this is to determine if it’s more important to allow for time to see Voices of Liberty and such or if we need to rush around riding Space Mountain) – entertainment versus rides
  4. How important is food to your vacation? Any vacation? (we’ve gotten burned by this one in the past – it was way more important than previous visitors indicated and it really screwed up all the plans we’d made)

Okay, that’s it for now. Next time, I’ll go into what we have planned for C&J 🙂

UPDATE: Lisa commented on Twitter that another good question is would be “fears” and “spinning rides” – excellent comment. We DO try to determine if there are any phobias or no-way-I’m-going-to-X. Two bad experiences… one friend didn’t do dark rides AT ALL, we didn’t learn this during the “discovery” process and therefore had to make a lot of changes on the fly; another friend was prone to anxiety attacks and we didn’t know that, we took her on Mission Space, she had a bad anxiety attack that even reappeared on the plane going home, the residue of this mistake still troubles us all.

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