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August 06, 2007

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We went to Orlando for our honeymoon a little more than 10 years ago... and we never rented a car. I haven't checked into it lately, but we loved staying at Disney, eating at Disney, and using their transportation. Other than breakfast, we were usually at one of the parks for mealtimes anyway. And with their transportation system, we could get to any of the Disney parks in a relatively quick and comfortable way with zero hassle involved.

By contrast, when we rented a car on our California trip a couple weeks ago, we ended up waiting for quite a while to pick up our car because they were so backed up. Nothing like starting your vacation by standing around a car rental place with your luggage! :)

Rich --

I was there a few years ago and I stayed on property. As long as I wanted to go to the MK or Epcot, it was a breeze -- the other places were more of a hassle. Disney is now the size (in area) of Boston (or at least that's what our tour book says), so even if you're on property, it can be quite a haul to some places.

That said, we've had friends stay on and off property and they've all loved their choice, so who knows what's "best"? We're staying in a place where some good friends stayed a couple years ago and they loved it. We'll see how it goes. I'll let you know in October! ;-)

the problem with going during off-peak times is that they are off-peak times for a reason. People don't want to take their kids out of school for a week to go on vacation. Having teachers in the family, I know how hard it is on both the teacher and the student to be out of the classroom for a long period of time. One of those non-monetary factors to be considered.

Juanny: I think FMF homeschools his kids, so being out of school is not an issue for him.

I have now been to Disney 3 times and ALWAYS stay on property as does my extended family. With the addition of Disney Dining you have almost an all-inclusive trip including transportation from the airport (where Disney handles your luggage from the moment you drop it off and delivers it to your room for you) to taking you to the parks and entertainment areas throughout your trip. Last year we made the trek twice. My first time back since I was a child. The first time we went in May (a moderate attendance time) I used the magical express service from the airport and I have no complaints. As soon as I arrived in Orando I was whisked away in a bus to Port Orleans Riverside. Also, as you mentioned, the value/slow season is best. Upon returning from Disney in May we learned that during the value season in September they were offering free Disney Dining. We promptly booked a second trip. Although they frequently offer "bounceback trips" at that time where you receive the same deal the next year we did not book at that time but are in fact again going in September. Also keep in mind that if you book with Disney at one rate and see another special the will reimburse you.My bottom line is that I really believe that Disney offers a way for any family to have a little magic in their lives.

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