So my first-ever Christmas trip is coming up fairly quickly - thanks to my sister-in-law who is paying my expenses so I can go and play tour guide for her!
Exactly four months to go, and where are we with the planning?
Here's an update from the past month:
- Airfare has been purchased through Southwest and we are booked on DME.
- Reservations have been made for a standard room at All-Star Music. She requested a room in the Jazz section, since it's the closest of the non-preferred buildings. About two weeks after making the reservation for $135 a night, the late fall general public discount was announced, making the room only $94 a night. I emailed my sil to let her know about it, and told her she needed to call and ask if she could apply the discount to the reservation. Our dates were available, but I didn't know if there would be any other restrictions. Finally, after a week, she called back and was excited to find out that we were able to get the discount.
- My pre-trip emails continue. This month they focus on Epcot. Next month will be the Studios.
- Still trying to decide whether we should do one of the dining plans. I laid out all the possible options related to dining in a quite lengthy email to my sil. She agrees that we will just wait to see if we can get the ADR she wants at Le Cellier. If we can get that, we might try the regular dining plan. If not we will either go with the quick-service plan or just pay oop and eat cheap.
- Still working on ideas of how to create a touring plan for us. She wants to see a lot of stuff in only 3 1/2 days.
What's next? Park hours for December should be released the first week of September. I'm not foolish enough to expect them to be there on September 1.
This will allow me to figure out our touring schedule, which will in turn let us know when to try to book Le Cellier. Our 90-day ADR date is September 20, so we'll have to decide quickly what to do. I would love it if they allowed you to book Candlelight Processional dining packages online, as that's the main one we're waiting for. The result of our ADR experience will let us know whether to book a dining plan. If she decides against that, then the next thing we'll do is probably order tickets from Undercover Tourist. One concern I have is, if she decides to go with a dining package, that no discounted packages will be available for our dates. We're on a room-only discount code right now. I hope we don't lose the discount just by switching to a package!