First Timer’s Cor­ner

WDW Magazine - - Contents - BY DAVE SHUTE

The key to a suc­cess­ful Walt Dis­ney World trip is plan­ning ahead—pick­ing your Re­sorts and din­ing months ahead, and your Fast­pass+ 30 or 60 days prior to your trip (de­pend­ing on where you are stay­ing).

How­ever, the time be­tween when you make your ini­tial choices and when you ac­tu­ally get to Walt Dis­ney World means that things can change—mostly for up­dat­ing and re­newal, called “re­furb” in the Dis­ney fan com­mu­nity.

Re­sorts, restau­rants, and rides can be dif­fer­ent (i.e. closed, re-opened, newly opened, or just plain dif­fer­ent) than what you’d ex­pected when you’d ini­tially planned them, and you need a way to keep up with these differences in case you might need to, or want to, make changes.

More­over, es­pe­cially for Re­sorts, deals may come out af­ter you booked them. Dis­ney won’t re-book you into these deals au­to­mat­i­cally—you need to do this your­self, and to do it, you need to know about it.

Note that one of the best rea­sons to use a travel agent is that the good ones will keep track of these changes for you, and let you know what’s hap­pen­ing and what your best op­tions are.

Oth­er­wise there’s no one sin­gle re­li­able source for keep­ing you com­pletely up to date. How­ever, here are some good start­ing points:

If your fa­vorite WDW site has a “sign up for news” op­tion, go for it. Since you are a WDW Mag­a­zine reader, you al­ready get emails from WDW Mag­a­zine. Other sites like Dad’s Guide to WDW and Tour­ing­ also of­fer fea­tures like this.

Rou­tinely check in on gen­eral WDW plan­ning sites like mine, your­, WDW Mag­a­zine pub­lisher, Carl’s Dad’s Guide to WDW, and Josh’s easy­ (Josh and I co-au­thor the book, The easy Guide to Your Walt Dis­ney World Visit.) Also “like” or join what­ever Face­book pres­ence these might have for up­dates on your news­feed.

Be sure to visit Mous­ for any new deals that Dis­ney may have out and might not get onto the more gen­eral sites—or that you may have just missed.

Read the of­fi­cial Dis­ney Parks Blog ev­ery now and then, es­pe­cially for at­trac­tion news.

For your Re­sort, sub­scribe to a ded­i­cated thread about it on a high-traf­fic Walt Dis­ney World fo­rum. I most com­monly look at the Re­sort threads on Dis­ For a few Re­sorts, there are ex­cep­tional ded­i­cated web­sites—for ex­am­ple, Steve’s Tiki­man­ on The Poly­ne­sian, An­dre’s Por­tor­ for Port Or­leans French Quar­ter and Port Or­leans River­side, and Mario’s Coron­ado Springs site at https://buz­­ado.

It’s a lit­tle an­noy­ing that there’s no one sin­gle place to get all the key info. But if you check in on a gen­eral site, along with Mous­, the Dis­ney Parks blog, and a high-traf­fic thread or web­site de­voted to your Re­sort at least once a week, you’ll be in great shape!

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