As of January 1, 2019, we have closed our forums. This is a decision we did not come to lightly, but it is necessary. The software our forums run on is just too out-of-date and it poses a significant security risk. The server software itself must be updated, and it cannot be without removing the forums.
So it is with a heavy heart that we say goodbye to our long-running forums. They came online in 2000 and brought together so many wonderful Disney fans. We had friendships form, careers launch, couples marry, children born ... all because of this amazing community.
Thank you to each of you who were a part of this community. You made it possible.
And a very special thank you to our Guides (moderators), past and present, who kept our forums a happy place to be. You are the glue that held everything together, and we are forever grateful to you. Thank you aliceinwdw, Caldercup, MrsM, WillCAD, Fortissimo, GingerJ, HiddenMickey, CRCrazy, Eeyoresmom, disneyknut, disneydani, Cam22, chezp, WDWfan, Luvsun, KMB733, rescuesk, OhToodles!, Colexis Mom, lfredsbo, HiddenMickey, DrDolphin, DopeyGirl, duck addict, Disneybine, PixieMichele, Sandra Bostwick, Eeyore Tattoo, DyanKJ130, Suzy Q'Disney, LilMarcieMouse, AllisonG, Belle*, Chrissi, Brant, DawnDenise, Crystalloubear, Disneymom9092, FanOfMickey, Goofy4Goofy, GoofyMom, Home4us123, iamgrumpy, ilovedisney247, Jennifer2003, Jenny Pooh, KrisLuvsDisney, Ladyt, Laughaholic88, LauraBelle Hime, Lilianna, LizardCop, Loobyoxlip, lukeandbrooksmom, marisag, michnash, MickeyMAC, OffKilter_Lynn, PamelaK, Poor_Eeyore, ripkensnana, RobDVC, SHEANA1226, Shell of the South, snoozin, Statelady01, Tara O'Hara, tigger22, Tink and Co., Tinkerbelz, WDWJAMBA, wdwlovers, Wendyismyname, whoSEZ, WildforWD, and WvuGrrrl. You made the magic.
We want to personally thank Sara Varney, who coordinated our community for many years (among so many other things she did for us), and Cheryl Pendry, our Message Board Manager who helped train our Guides, and Ginger Jabour, who helped us with the PassPorter-specific forums and Live! Guides. Thank you for your time, energy, and enthusiasm. You made it all happen.
There are other changes as well.
Why? Well, the world has changed. And change with it, we must. The lyrics to "We Go On" for IllumiNations say it best:
We go on to the joy and through the tears
We go on to discover new frontiers
Moving on with the current of the years.
We go on
Moving forward now as one
Moving on with a spirit born to run
Ever on with each rising sun.
To a new day, we go on.
It's time to move on and move forward.
PassPorter is a small business, and for many years it supported our family. But the world changed, print books took a backseat to the Internet, and for a long time now it has been unable to make ends meet. We've had to find new ways to support our family, which means new careers and less and less time available to devote to our first baby, PassPorter.
But eventually, we must move on and move forward. It is the right thing to do.
So we are retiring this newsletter, as we simply cannot keep up with it. Many thanks to Mouse Fan Travel who supported it all these years, to All Ears and MousePlanet who helped us with news, to our many article contributors, and -- most importantly -- to Sara Varney who edited our newsletter so wonderfully for years and years.
And we are no longer charging for the Live Guides. If you have a subscription, it's yours to keep for the lifetime of the Live Guides at no additional cost. The Live Guides will stay online, barring server issues and technical problems, for all of 2019.
That said, PassPorter is not going away. Most of the resources will remain online for as long as we can support them, and after that we will find ways to make whatever we can available. PassPorter means a great deal to us, and to many of you, and we will do our best to keep it alive in whatever way we can. Our server costs are high, and they'll need to come out of our pockets, so in the future you can expect some changes so we can bring those costs down.
Thank you, thank you, thank you for your amazing support over the years. Without you, there's no way us little guys could have made something like this happen and given the "big guys" a run for their money. PassPorter was consistently the #3 guidebook after the Unofficial and Official guides, which was really unheard of for such a small company to do. We ROCKED it thanks to you and your support and love!
If you miss us, you can still find some of us online. Sara started a new blog at DisneyParkPrincess.com -- I strongly urge you to visit and get on her mailing list. She IS the Disney park princess and knows Disney backward and forward. And I am blogging as well at JenniferMaker.com, which is a little craft blog I started a couple of years ago to make ends meet. You can see and hear me in my craft show at https://www.youtube.com/c/jennifermaker . Many PassPorter readers and fans are on Facebook, in groups they formed like the PassPorter Trip Reports and PassPorter Crafting Challenge (if you join, just let them know you read about it in the newsletter). And some of our most devoted community members started a forum of their own at Pixie Dust Lane and all are invited over.
So we encourage you to stay in touch with us and your fellow community members wherever works best for you!
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So we are flying down on Sunday, November 9th and not arriving to Orlando until 5pm, and getting to Pop Century about 6. I had two ideas about what to do that night but I am not sure on which to do. First idea is to just go to Downtown Disney and go shopping. But with all the horror stories I have heard about how long it takes on the buses because of the construction. I don’t want to spend hours on the bus. My second idea was to take a bus to the Magic Kingdom and then take the monorail or the boat over to the Grand Floridian and go out on the beach to watch the fireworks. But I don’t know how we will get back to the hotel. Will the resort monorail still be running or will we be able to take the boat back to the Magic Kingdom to get on a bus back to the hotel. The fireworks are at 10 and the park doesn’t close till 11.
My first thought was you might not get to Pop C that early.
It's taken us easily an hour sometimes just to get out of the airport and then was another 45 minutes or more to get to our resort when we took Magical Express. I think that was the trip where there was a backup of planes due to a jetway shortage or something, and we were stuck on the plane for almost a half hour until a gate was ready.
I wouldn't plan anything major if I were arriving then as you never know about possible weather-related delays. I'd merely settle in, get dinner and explore the resort before an early bedtime so as to be well rested for our first full Disney day.
Wait until you get into your room and then let the magic take you where it will if you are wide awake and itching to go somewhere would be my suggestion.
Anyway, if I wanted to watch Wishes from the GF, I would go around the Main Building to Gasparilla's Grille, grab some snacks and seats on the terrace where you can get a good view of the fireworks. Much more relaxing than standing on the beach which you may not be allowed to do since you're not staying at the GF.
“People say nothing is impossible, but I do nothing every day.” —Winnie-the-Pooh
We also will be arriving November 9th, but since we drive, we will be there by noon or so. Normally we don't plan a park day for when we arrive, although this year I will be hitting MK with my son because one of his favorite rides is closing for refurbishment the next day (Magic Carpets). So usually we unpack, hit the pool, get something to eat, visit the gift shop (so my husband can pick up the postcards he will forget to mail until we're back home ), and just generally hang out.
Once we did dinner at Boma which worked well since we were at AS Music five minutes away, so late dinner at a resort might be an option for you. Then you could enjoy the fireworks as well from wherever you are. One year we had a great fireworks experience standing on the ferry dock at TTC, with the music piped in and a great view of the display, so you don't even need to be in a park or resort to see them.
I normally hang out the resort, get dinner and unpack. My next trip (arrive November 10) will be a bit different as I'm planning to head to Downtown Disney once I've checked in & gotten my scooter to pick up my annual pass and tables in wonderland card at guest services so I don't have to waste time in the morning doing it. I'll probably get dinner at Earl of Sandwhich or Rainforest Cafe. Afterwards depending on how I'm feeling I'll either head back to my room or go to Magic Kingdom to watch Wishes from the plaza between security and the park entrance. I wouldn't count on being at the hotel by 6pm. Even if you're renting a car you'll have to claim you luggage unless you're going carry on only, get the car and drive to the hotel which is probably going to eat up more than an hour. I take DME and since my flight is scheduled to arrive at 4:24pm I expect I'll arrive at my hotel at 6:30pm if not later depend on how long it takes to get off the plane, use the restroom, make my way to DME, wait for and board the bus, wait some more for more people to arrive and get on then leave and get to Disney and make before stopping at least once or twice to drop people off at other hotels before arriving at my hotel. The 6:30pm is with me using the luggage tag DME sends so I wont have to worry about getting my luggage from baggage claim but if I didn't do that I would add a half hour for getting my luggage so wouldn't expect to be getting to my hotel until 7pm.
last weekend, our flight landed at MCO at 11pm. we were not at our resort until 1:15am (two adults, no kids, carry on only). so think more 7:30 arrival than 6:00.
i second (or third) the walking around POP and then checking out art of animation. POP is actually really cool and worth an hour or so of exploration. i've never stayed there but i have visited it just to see it. i've never been to AoA, but i'd super like to see it, too.
and then go to bed early. ;-)
however, if you are set on doing SOMETHING outside of your resort that night, i'm going to get up on my new soapbox and say: take a taxi. you can get one from anywhere to anywhere (except to/from MK). totally worth the cost.
That is a good point to grab a cab which will whisk you quickly to wherever you'd like to go for not that much money.
It'd be our luck to decide we're too excited to stay at our resort and then find we got stuck waiting 20-30 minutes for the bus because we got to the bus stop shortly after the one we needed had left. We happened to be the third ECV waiting for the bus once when tired and getting grouchy. Sure enough, the bus could only take two ECV's, and the two ahead of us were used by kids. We sucked it up but vowed to plan better, not get that tired again, etc. rather than endure such frustration again.
“People say nothing is impossible, but I do nothing every day.” —Winnie-the-Pooh
I am one who once gets onto WDW property I absolutely cannot just stay at the resort that first night! I would go to DTD and get a bite to eat and shop. If the bus lines look to long then I would catch a cab to get back to my resort.
Last year when we stayed at Shades of Green we walked over to the Poly and hopped the Monorail just to get a glimpse. This year we are staying on site and are arriving much earlier in the day. We plan to get some sushi at the Poly, ride the monorail and possibly go to Beaches n Cream for a Mickey Pants Sundae
I'd say just enjoy the resort for the evening since you are arriving later in the afternoon. Maybe even head over to DTD for dinner and shopping.
For our June 2015 trip, we will be arriving on a Friday around 2:00 pm and we are planning on exploring the resort and then heading to DTD for early dinner and bowling at Splitsville and then head to Disney Quest.
I've eaten at 97 out of 252 restaurants at Walt Disney World (38%)