Book Review: The Ultimate Guide to an Affordable Disney World Vacation

ultimate guide to an affordable walt disney world vacation

In Kevin Barry’s book, the Ultimate Guide to an Affordable Disney World Vacation, Barry explores the many different ways that you as a family can save money on your Disney World vacation. Captured within the 119 pages are tips on saving on flights, rental cars, park tickets, hotels, food expenses, and more.  The story is written around the quest of the Barry family in planning their next trip to Walt Disney World, and gives detailed information on how much they are saving in their planning.

For me, the book is a good read, and has a lot of great information; however, there are some tips that I prefer not to tackle, that you need to make sure you are careful about before implementing.  For me, the first is the tips that are provided for securing cheap/free air fare by getting credit cards.  I know that there are disciplined people out there that can implement this process and save a lot of money on their flights, but the key here is that you need to be very disciplined to make sure you don’t run up thousands of dollars in debt.  To his credit, Kevin talks about this in great detail.

When it comes to park tickets, the biggest question is really whether or not you and your family want to implement the park hopper add-on.  This is a significant cost, and if you plan your trip correctly, you absolutely can get away with not purchasing the park hopper because it will save you money.  In this regard, Barry does a good job against recommending it.  Additionally, he also does a good job in making sure that you know that you can’t get your park tickets at just any location.  The place to get tickets is at the Disney World website, where you will pay full price, or through select resale sites such as the Undercover Tourist website, where you can get a discount.

All in all, the Ultimate Guide does a really good job in providing tips on saving money on your next Walt Disney World vacation.  At the cost of around $12, it’s a good investment, and in this blogger’s perspective, is worth the cost to have some great detailed information that you can use to save money on your next trip.

Have you read the Ultimate Guide? What did you think of it?  Let us know in the comments, and thanks!

Blogorail Green – Best Disney Drinks (and where to find them!)

Welcome to this month’s Blogorail Green Loop. Today we are sharing some of the best drinks you can find at the Disney Parks & where you can find them.


Best Disney Drinks

Image ©Disney

Best Disney Drinks (and where to find them!)

Written by Mike Ellis.

Welcome to Germany!  Home of great food, great drink, and great entertainment!  Today, my friends, I am traveling a bit out of my comfort zone to talk about the best Disney drink that I have to have when we eat dinner at Biergarten.  That drink (or, if you will, series of drinks) is the German Beer Float.  I say that I’m heading out of my comfort zone because, truly, I am rarely an alcohol drinker — and as such, the German Beer Flight is the perfect amount of alcohol for me!

The German Beer Flight has changed since the last time I ate at Biergarten.  The last time we ate there was 2013, and if I remember correctly, this was what the Beer Flight consisted of:

  • Radeberger Pilsner
  • Altenmünster Oktoberfest
  • Schöfferhofer Weizen
  • Hovels

Each of those four beers consists of a 5 ounce tasting, so in all, you receive 20 ounces of beer.  However, since then, the Beer Flight has changed, and now consists of these four beers:

  • Altenmünster Oktoberfest – One of the most beautiful regions in Germany is the Allgäu, home of Altenmünster Brewer Beers. Altenmünster is made from rediscovered recipes for connoisseurs, who highly value the use of long-forgotten ingredients creating a full-flavored and timeless beer
  • Wursteiner Dunkel – Classic German-style dark pilsner that has a deep chestnut brown hue with a smooth, toasty malt flavor and mocha aromas
  • Schöfferhofer Hefeweizen – A top-fermented full-bodied beer with a distictive slightly sweet, floral aroma. Schöfferhofer Hefeweizen is one of Germany’s most well-known wheat beers
  • Schöfferhofer Pink Grapefruit Hefeweizen – A unique combination of sparkling smooth hefeweizen with grapefruit juice. Refreshing well-rounded taste with tangy
    character and hints of sweetness that is pleasing to the palate.  The world’s first unfiltered grapefruit hefeweizen-mix

Still 5 ounce tastings, so that is the same, the price for the current evolution of the Beer Flight is $13.  Before, I was a big fan of the Oktoberfest — and since that hasn’t changed, I imagine I will still be a fan of that.  Of the four of those, I think the Pink Grapefruit Hefeweizen would be the one that I would dislike the most — or perhaps the Dunkel.  I’m not one for a dark style beer so that one may be the one I dislike.

If you have a fancy for one of these, you can also order them individually in 1/2 liter servings — the two Hefeweizen varieties are $9.50 each, the Oktoberfest is $8.75, and the Dunkel is $8.25.

For me, though, the real reason I think fondly of the German Beer Flight is because of the memories I have of the last time we ate at Biergarten.  That was 2013, it was the first trip to Walt Disney World we had been on since I became a part time travel agent with Pixie Vacations, and the agency was having an agent get together to hang out together and get to know one another.  That meal was great because Cindy, Sophie and I joined our dear friends Brenda and Butch for dinner at Biergarten, and in the course of that meal, Sophie and I shared a moment that I likely will be reliving in a different venue in the next 10 years or so.  I’ll let the picture speak for itself, though:

Best Disney Drinks

Sophie and I on the dance floor.

So, my friends, this concludes my look at the German Beer Flight, and why this is my choice for the Best Disney Drink.  I hope that you have enjoyed my look at the drink, as well as my look at why this one simple drink really does it for me.  Until next time, please go out, have a great day, and remember to make it a Disney day no matter where you are!  Thanks for stopping by, go check out the rest of the posts below!

For more of the best drinks at Disney,
check out the other great posts from the Blogorail!


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Disney Getaway

The Blogorail: Original Magic Kingdom Attractions

Welcome to this month’s Blogorail Orange Loop. Today we are sharing vintage Disney attractions and entertainment and a little Disney history.


Magic Kingdom Attractions

Cinderella Castle stands watch over the Magic Kingdom!

Original Magic Kingdom Attractions

Hello everyone, and thank you for joining us today as we explore some vintage Disney on the Magical Blogorail Orange Loop!  In my post today, I’m writing about my favorite Original Magic Kingdom Attractions.  Have a look at my list, and let me know how my list compares with your list!

1) Peter Pan’s Flight

Magic Kingdom Attractions

At the top of our favorite Original Attractions is Peter Pan’s Flight!

Our family loves Peter Pan’s Flight!  It’s such a fun journey; as I said in a different post, when you enter the Magic Kingdom, it’s like you leave Florida, but when you enter Peter Pan’s Flight, it’s like you have totally left the Magic Kingdom behind. It’s that immersive. With Disney’s incredible use of forced perspective, you really do feel like you are traveling above the streets of London, and that you have left Wendy’s bedroom behind.

2) Haunted Mansion

Magic Kingdom Attractions

The Haunted Mansion is one of Mike’s Favorites!

Another of my favorite Magic Kingdom Original Attractions is the Haunted Mansion.  Like Peter Pan’s Flight, this attraction makes use of an Omnimover system for loading and unloading Guests into the attraction.  There are some subtle (and also not so subtle) differences between the version in Liberty Square and the one located in Disneyland at New Orlean’s Square, but the premise is the same; who wants to be that 1,000th Happy Haunt? On a former post, we talked about where we would like to spend the night at the Magic Kingdom; for my wife, it was in the Haunted Mansion.

3) it’s a small world

Magic Kingdom Attractions

Located across the path from Peter Pan’s Flight, it’s a small world makes our list!

As many of you already know, I’m sure, part of what makes “it’s a small world” special is the fact that it was originally on display at the 1964 World Fair in New York City. In addition, this attraction is just one of those attractions that I love because it automatically makes me happy.  I sing the song, over and over again, I look at the decorations, I take pictures of hundreds of things, and I wave at the Cast Member who starts us on our journey.  When I was a kid, I remember my Grandpa and I sitting in Pinocchio Village Haus by the windows that overlook the attraction, waving at boat after boat, and having them wave back at us. That’s a memory that I will never forget.

4) The Walt Disney World Railroad

Magic Kingdom Attractions

The Roger E. Broggie is just one of the locomotives on the Walt Disney World Railroad!

Perhaps as a surprise to some of you (or perhaps not to my long term readers), the Walt Disney World Railroad is number 4 in our list of favorite Original Magic Kingdom Attractions.  I’ve had a fascination with trains my entire life, starting with my first train layout I was given for Christmas as a child, and continuing on to now with the trains I have here at the house. What makes the Walt Disney World Railroad so special to me, though, is the nostalgia of it all; the ability to just travel through time to when railroad travel was much more common, and to be able to see a side of Disney that one doesn’t often see.

5) The Jungle Cruise

Magic Kingdom Attractions

The Gorillas have taken over the Jungle Cruise!

Rounding out our top five is The Jungle Cruise, that one of a kind attraction that has a cult following.  What I love about the Jungle Cruise is how corny the jokes are! Also, I love the history of the attraction, more so from the Disneyland perspective than the Walt Disney World perspective, but I like the history at the Magic Kingdom nonetheless.

So there you have it, my top five Magic Kingdom original attractions!  Where does my list stack up against your list? Let me know in the comments, please, and thanks for stopping by today! Now, go check out the rest of the great posts my friends on the Blogorail have written for you!

For more vintage Disney,
check out the other great posts from the Blogorail!


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V8 Cafe

The Blogorail: Flo’s V8 Cafe at Disneyland Resort

Welcome to this month’s Blogorail Green Loop. Today we are telling you all about some of the best quick service restaurants at Disneyland.


V8 Cafe

The Neon at Flo’s V8 Cafe makes this a great spot to photograph at night!

Hello everyone, thank you for taking the time to work through all of the posts for this month’s Magical Blogorail Green line — the Best Quick Service Restaurants at Disneyland!  Now, I know that Flo’s V8 Cafe isn’t at Disneyland — it’s at Disney’s California Adventure Park — but to me, I was reading this to be about the best Quick Service Restaurants at Disneyland Resort, not just at one of the parks, and to me, not many things can top the atmosphere, food, and incredible theming of Flo’s V8 Cafe, so it’s my choice to close us out!

Located in Cars Land, of course, Flo’s is a great restaurant to enjoy.  The food is incredible, it wasn’t terribly busy both times we ate there, and there is plenty of seating.  It’s a great place to relax, take a load off, and just take in the scenery of Cars Land.

V8 Cafe

Pot Roast, Turkey, and every child’s favorite, Mac and Cheese!

Open for breakfast, lunch, and dinner, Flo’s V8 Cafe is worth a try if you’ve never eaten here before, and I’ll tell you, I’m sure it tastes much better than oil and gas that the cars “ate” in the movie!  For more information, check out the restaurant page on Disneyland’s website, and this link will take you to the menus so you can navigate through them.

So tell me, have you eaten at Flo’s V8 Cafe before?  If so, what did you think?  Let me know in the comments, and thanks for stopping by today!

 

For more great quick service restaurants at Disneyland,
check out the other great posts from the Blogorail!


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Launch Party

Join in my Dream Disney Scents Launch Party!

Launch Party

Join in my Dream Disney Scents Launch Party!

Here we are!  Today is the start of our Scentsy launch party for Dream Disney Scents!  As I mentioned yesterday, I am a new Scentsy Consultant, and I am looking forward to help you not only plan your dream Disney vacation, but to pair it up with some incredible Scentsy scents and warmers to remind you of that trip for years to come!  So let’s get this party started!  Are you looking for some great scents to freshen up your home, ones that you can use over and over again?  Scents that don’t burn because there is no candle to light?  Well, then you need to go check out my Scentsy website!  Dream Disney Scents is your place for all of that and more, and best of all, I’ve got a special page setup just for the launch party!  Just click on our launch party link to get started!

I’m giving you plenty of opportunity to look things over and order during this party!  With Valentine’s Day coming up, I’m keeping our launch party going until that day, February 14th, so take advantage of it all!  Let me know what questions, concerns, or comments you have, and thanks for stopping by today!

My Story

I have been a travel agent and blogger for several years; I started My Dreams of Disney, in September, 2010, as a way to document the memories of trips my family has taken to Walt Disney World (and now, Disneyland).  Then, in February, 2013, I became a travel agent with Pixie Vacations.

One of the things I am excited to do is to blend my ventures together; my belief is that we all have a special scent that will draw us in and remind us of a special time and place.  With my Scentsy site, Disney Dream Scents, I believe that I will be able to capture the best of both worlds — Disney and Scentsy — and marry them together so that they work together to enhance your vacation even more.

Picture this in your Mind’s Eye:  You have contacted me, and we have planned a great trip for you to stay at the Beach Club over the summer.  As part of my service and as a thank you to you, perhaps a special warmer is heading your way, with a bar of the Scentsy scent that reminds you of that special trip you took with your family.

Whether you are going to Disney or not, I’m here to help you.  Reach out to me, tell me your thoughts, and let’s work together to get that special scent to your house to take you to back to that memory you don’t want to ever forget!

What scent will you choose to pair with the resort you last stayed at?  Let me know in the comments below, click on our launch party link, and let’s get started on getting that scent in your hands!

Remember, Disney & Scentsy is a great combination!