Thursday, July 17, 2014

Getting Everything You Need Down to Disney

So, you've decided to go to Walt Disney World.  You've picked your resort, booked your trip, made your advanced dining reservations, scheduled your fast passes.  You're all set to go.

And then you realize that you've got more stuff to pack than you initially thought. With airlines charging you for your luggage, most people are trying to limit their bags to one per person - and who can blame them?  Why put even more money in the airline executives' pockets?  I personally try to minimize any extra charges that might be incurred when we fly.

So... what to do, what to do???

Well, here's the good news (or at least it's been my experience - and that's what this blog is all about, right?):

If you have a United Airlines credit card, they will not charge you for the first piece of luggage per person in your party.  Simply present the credit card at curbside check-in and remind them (I do!) that you're not supposed to get charged for the first checked bag per person.

We are a family of three, so I make it a point NEVER to take more than one bag per person.

Here's another good piece of news:

If you fly JetBlue, they don't charge you at all for the first checked bag per person in your party.  JetBlue credit card or not.  Period.

So, what if you've done all of the creative packing you can imagine, but you still have plenty of stuff to take that just won't keep you down to one piece of luggage per person?

Here's what we've done every time we've gone down to the World.  Please keep in mind that I can only vouch for the Coronado Springs Resort where we've always stayed, but I would be willing to bet it would work for any resort on Disney property.  However, when in doubt, call Disney and ask - their representatives are there to answer any and all questions you may have.

In the past, we've had to take pullups, wipes, and other varied toddler items. Also, in order to save time and money, unless we have a character breakfast reservation, we eat breakfast in our room, which means cereal (milk is sold at the resort's shop), and other assorted breakfast pre-packaged foods (muffins, cereal bars - that type of thing), as well as snacks (crackers, candy, etc.) also need to find their way down to Disney.

Well... I've come to learn that Federal Express is my friend.  That's right!

About three to four weeks prior to our trip, we'll pack up a box with all of those extra items, call Fed Ex to pick it up, and off it goes to our resort.  I address the label to myself c/o the resort, and I make a big note on the label in red marker and yellow highlighter indicating our arrival date.  Just make sure that you check off GROUND DELIVERY.  We messed that up last year, and I accidentally checked off next day delivery (yikes!).  That was not a good bill to receive, but thankfully the people at Fed Ex were very understanding when we called them... Yeah, I will be very careful about that going forward, LOL!  I was wondering how that package got down there so fast!!!

Once we arrive at our resort, we pick up our package (the resort charges us a nominal fee for handling - still cheaper than paying for an extra piece of luggage), and we're ready to start our vacation.

Helpful Tip:  Throw some packing tape in your suitcase, and print out a return Fed Ex delivery slip reflecting your home address.  That way, if you have any items left over from your trip - or if you bought any souvenirs that won't fit in your luggage, you can put everything back in the box and repackage it, drop it off for delivery at your resort, and it will arrive back at your home in no time.      

Have fun packing, and until next time - I hope you remember to keep the Mouse in your house!