A Magical Run Weekend

A Magical Run Weekend

Before my very first runDisney Event – 2010 Walt Disney World Half Marathon – January 2010 I’ve considered myself a “runner” since 2009 when I trained for my very first half marathon.  Since then I’ve run one full marathon, eleven half marathons & countless 10Ks and 5Ks.  Of those eleven half marathons, four of them have been runDisney races.  I can safely say that not all runs are created equal and runDisney races are simply a magical time!  With fun themes, character greetings along the course, & plenty of Disney magic to keep you going, these races should be on every runner’s bucket list, no matter your experience level.  At this time, races are only available at Walt Disney World in the United States.  Four different race weekends are currently held at different times of the year.  I’ve run in 3 of the 4 current race weekends that are held at Walt Disney World.  Here are my take aways from all four of my runDisney experiences:  Tip 1 – Register ASAP Make sure you follow runDisney on Facebook.  There they will post the dates for all the upcoming races as well as the registration opening dates.  These races fill up FAST, so be prepared!  In 2017 and 2018 runDisney has allowed Travel Agents that partner with Disney to book runDisney race packages for upcoming races, before the general public.  The main stipulation is that you must book your race registration with a Disney Resort room reservation or Disney Resort vacation package.  If you cancel your room or package, your race registration is also cancelled so be very sure you...
Disney Cruise Line – Without Your Kids

Disney Cruise Line – Without Your Kids

Written by Kimberly McClintock Evans – Magical Tripcations Travel Planner If I had a nickel for every person who laughed or gave me a double take when I said I went on a Disney Cruise for a week without my kids, I could have paid for the trip! But I am not sure why?  When you think about it, Disney Parks are unlike other parks.  Disney Hotels are unlike other hotels.  Disney movies, well they are some of the highest grossing, most entertaining movies of all times. Companies actually hire Disney Executives and the Disney Institute teaches people “how to be more like Disney.” Disney is one of the strongest brands worldwide that is synonymous with cleanliness, excellence and unparalleled service.  Why wouldn’t I want that on my vacation? But without the kids?  What about all the kids? What did I do for 7 days on a ship full of kids? The first time I took a cruise my kids were tiny…that was the first place since I had kids where: I ate a full meal from beginning to end.  I had a full meal even at the temperature it was intended to be served at!! (Not 3 hours later while my kids are in the tub and I am standing over them eating cold meat.)  I didn’t have to do anything but eat and enjoy my family.  I didn’t even have to cut meat.  If someone spilled a drink, there are two people to come and clean it up within seconds.  I didn’t even have to pour ketchup.  While that can happen in many places there are differences-my...
Star Wars: A Galactic Spectacular Dessert Party

Star Wars: A Galactic Spectacular Dessert Party

Written by Jennifer Jamieson – Magical Tripcations Travel Planner A trip to Disney World is definitely magical but there are also plenty of opportunities to add extra magic during your stay. From special character meals to behind the scenes tours to spa treatments and dessert parties, there is plenty to choose from when looking to celebrate a special occasion or just for an extra bit of fun! Today we’d like to highlight the Star Wars: A Galactic Spectacular Dessert Party at Disney’s Hollywood studios as we found it to be an out of this Disney world experience and put our trip to this park into hyper drive! The Star Wars: A Galactic Spectacular Dessert Party is a special ticketed event meaning that there is an extra ticket that is purchased in addition to the regular park admission to Disney’s Hollywood Studios.  Currently, the cost is $79 per adult (10 and over) and $45 per child (3 to 9) including tax and gratuities. The party ticket includes an array of delectable desserts (all you care to enjoy savory and sweet treats) and specialty drinks – alcoholic beverages for those over 21 or soft drinks, coffee and water, too – to be enjoyed in a setting inspired by the films and surrounded by movie props inside Star Wars Launch Bay. Guests check-in for the party just outside Launch Bay in the Animation Courtyard.  We arrived about 20 minutes before the party started to check-in and we were greeted by Cast Members who gave us instructions along with special lanyards to wear allowing us to enter and easily come and go as...
#PrincessGoals

#PrincessGoals

Written by Maritza Navarro – Magical Tripcations Travel Planner If you have a princess-obsessed little one and want to meet them at Walt Disney World, here are some tips and tricks that have been learned over several Walt Disney World vacations: Tip 1 – Character Meals The easiest way to meet princesses quickly is to book a princess themed character meal.  The most coveted of these is Cinderella’s Royal Table in the Magic Kingdom which is based on availability for either breakfast, lunch or dinner.  There you will meet and take a formal photo with Cinderella and meet four other princesses at your meal.  Another option is at Akershus Royal Banquet Hall, located in the Norway Pavilion inside the World Showcase at EPCOT.  This is based on availability for either breakfast, lunch, or dinner.  You will take a formal photograph with Belle in her yellow gown and then meet four other princesses at your meal.  Another option to consider for a princess meal, on a smaller scale, is at Trattoria al Forno at Disney’s BoardWalk Inn. There you will meet Rapunzel and Princess Ariel, along with Flynn Rider, and Prince Eric.   This is only available for breakfast and it’s a delicious meal.  The final option is at 1900 Park Fare (dinner only) inside the Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort & Spa, where you will meet Cinderella, Prince Charming, Cinderella’s step-sisters, Anastasia and Druzella, and Lady Tremaine, Cinderella’s step-mother.  This is such a fun dinner with amazing character interactions. If you are on either the Disney Dining Plan or the Disney Deluxe Dining Plan, all of these options would be...
Celebrating your birthday at Walt Disney World

Celebrating your birthday at Walt Disney World

Written by Erica V. Ellis – Magical Tripcations Travel Planner Disney vacations are special and magical, no matter when you take them.  Add a birthday to the mix and it becomes even more magical!  Here are our Top 5 ways to celebrate your birthday while at Walt Disney World! Let your Magical Tripcations Travel Planner know that you’ll be celebrating a birthday while on vacation! Your planner will add that tidbit of information on to your reservation.  When you scan your Magic Bands at park entrances, for fast passes, etc., the cast members will be alerted to this.  You’ll probably get lots of extra “happy birthdays” during your stay. If you aren’t given a birthday button at check-in, make sure you ask for one at your Disney Resort’s front desk or at any of the guest service locations at the parks. Once you have it, wear it proudly!  It’s always fun to hear “happy birthday” from cast members and park goers.  Who knows, maybe you’ll get some extra pixie dust because of it! Talk to your Magical Tripcations Travel Planner about a special gift package or room celebration through Disney Floral & Gifts. It can be as simple as a small cake in your room, or a full-on room makeover to help you celebrate the special day.  Prices vary and can satisfy pretty much any budget.  For my daughter’s third birthday we ordered her a special Princess Gift Basket and a small chocolate cake that was delivered to our room the evening of her birthday.  When we arrived back to our room, the surprise was waiting for her and...
Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party:  See What the BOO is All About!

Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party: See What the BOO is All About!

Holidays are celebrated in a big way at Walt Disney World.  The parks are decked out with beautifully themed decorations and some holidays even have a special party.  One of the most spooktacular and hauntedly rated events is Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party held at Magic Kingdom on select nights in the fall.  The party is a special ticketed event and takes place after hours when Magic Kingdom closes to all except those that have a party ticket.  Have you ever thought about attending the Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party (MNSSHP)?  Or, not even sure what it is?  Is it worth the additional cost?  Is it scary for kids?  What’s included?  Let’s dig in and find out what the BOO is all about!     Even though park visitors can enjoy the lovely decorations displayed throughout the park in September and October, only Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween party attendees can enjoy and experience the special Halloween themed entertainment and take part in special activities.   On select nights, the party starts at 7 p.m. after non-party guests exit the Magic Kingdom park; however, party guests can enter Magic Kingdom as early as 4 p.m.  The party ends at midnight giving you plenty of time to take in all the special entertainment, attractions and activities.  In true Disney style, the tone of the event is “not-so-scary” which means children of all ages can enjoy all of the party fun!  Let’s take a look at some of the special activities that take place at the party:   Trick-or-Treating Each attendee upon entering the event will be given a trick-or-treat bag (or you can bring your...