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Disney World, Universal, and SeaWorld
September 6-13, 2014
Priority Registration Deadline
: May 3
Regular Registration Deadline: July 10

Trip information is divided into five pages in order to help you plan your trip to Disney World, Universal, and SeaWorld. Please read through all of these pages before registering.

CONTENTS
Introduction you are here

Hotel Information
Disney Educational Programs
Important Things to Know
Registration Form

UPDATED 4/5/14
- The parking fee at all four Disney parks is now $17 per day.
- We can reserve our FastPass times 60 days in advance. More changes are coming soon.
- You don't need one of the new magic bands (wristbands) to take advantage of all the new MyMagic+ stuff. Our tickets will do the same thing. If you want to purchase them for your family, you'll be able to after you arrive at Disney.

The Priority Registration Deadline is for families who want to reserve their FastPass times at least 60 days in advance of our group arrival date for those staying at a Disney Resort and our group hotel (the Disney Dolphin), and 30 days in advance for those staying off-property).

The Regular Registration Deadline is for families who don't want to reserve their FastPass times in advance or missed the priority registration deadline.

The FastPass system basically lets you reserve a time to ride an attraction without having to wait in line. In the past, you'd get a paper FastPass ticket from a machine near each attraction and you'd go back to the attraction at the time printed on the ticket. You'd then bypass the regular line and board the ride.

The new FastPass+ system is getting rid of the machines and paper tickets and allows you to reserve them in advance (through the Disney website or app), or when you arrive at the park (through kiosks or the app). You can also make changes in your selections while at the park (through the app and kiosks).

Everyone with a park ticket can use the FastPass+ system, whether you're with my group or not, whether you stay at a local Motel 6 or the most expensive resort on Disney property. You'll need tickets in hand to register them on the Disney website or app and reserve your Fastpass times.

For more information about FastPass+, see this website, this website, and/or this one (whichever is the most helpful to you).

What we're doing...
We're going back to Disney World (and SeaWorld, and Universal) in September this year! We chose this time to accommodate families who've wanted to travel before the holidays, and because we were offered a good (for Disney) rate for our group hotel - the Disney Dolphin Resort. Another upside for September is longer park hours and lower crowds than we experienced on our recent trips in November and December.

The downside is the warmer weather. However, we've decided to put up with the heat in exchange for better rates, better hours, lower crowds, and access to both water parks (one is always closed for refurbishment in November and December).

As always, we'll enjoy all four theme parks (Magic Kingdom, Epcot, Hollywood Studios, and Animal Kingdom), water parks, DisneyQuest, Disney's Fantasia Gardens Miniature Golf Course, Disney's Winter Summerland Miniature Golf Course, ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex, and behind-the-scenes educational programs for our students in kindergarten through high school.

Disney's Night of Joy Christian concerts will be held during this time (September 5 & 6, 2014), as will Mickey's Not So Scary Halloween Party. (These are special events and require separate tickets.)

Disney World Tickets
Disney tickets are $270 per person (ages 3 and up). This price includes your registration fee, and the following features:

Park Tickets
Visit all four Disney parks for 7 days. These are hopper tickets. You can visit one or more parks each day. The seven days do not have to be consecutive. They're valid from August 30 to September 20, and will expire after that, even if you haven't used all 7 days.

You and your student must attend an educational program on September 8, 9, or 10, and you must have at least one park day left on the ticket to attend the program since it's conducted in a park (except for the Backstage at La Nouba program on September 10, which is at Downtown Disney instead of a park). If your student does not attend the program, you may be charged the difference between regular gate prices and our discounted tickets due to non-attendance.

[Note: You can't add more days to these tickets, and you can't add the no-expiration option.]

Fun Passes
Entry to following attractions (7 times total per person):
- DisneyQuest Indoor Interactive Park
- Blizzard Beach Water Park
- Typhoon Lagoon Water Park
- Disney's Fantasia Gardens Miniature Golf (before 4:00 pm)
- Disney's Winter Summerland Miniature Golf (before 4:00 pm)
- ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex

Each person holding a ticket may visit these attractions any time from August 30 to September 20 seven times total (not each attraction seven times), and in any combination. If you visit two different attractions on the same day, then it counts as two visits. If you visit one of them in the morning, go out for lunch, then return to the same attraction on the same day, that counts as only one visit.

One educational program for each student in your party, ages 5-high school. (Student participation is required to qualify for our discounted park tickets.) Extra programs are available for an additional $28 per student, per program.

Our tickets are the new MyMagic+ tickets that will likely utilize the new FastPass+ system (but not guaranteed). It's still being tested, but my guess is it'll be in place for all guests by the time of our trip.

Hurricane Policy
Disney will work with us on a case-by-case basis in the event of a direct hit (or anticipated direct hit) from a hurricane right before our arrival or during our stay. There are no guarantees, but they'll almost definitely refund unused tickets. If the tickets are partially used they’ll work with us to finish the use of the tickets. If there's just heavy rain from a hurricane, they won't refund our tickets - we'll just have to deal with the rain. I'll do my best on your behalf if there's an event that impacts our stay, but there are no guarantees. Please register with this in mind.
 
Extra Group Disney Events
Cirque du Soleil - La Nouba Performance
I have reserved seats for our group at the 6:00 pm Cirque du Soleil - La Nouba performance on Tuesday, September 9. (Students who register for Disney's Backstage at La Nouba program must attend this performance.)

This is a wonderfully entertaining show and well worth the price of admission. Families who've been to Cirque du Soleil performances in other areas (Las Vegas, etc.) have told me that Disney's show (La Nouba) is the best they've seen. I've never had a family yet say they regretted going, and many have emailed me to tell me that it was one of the highlights of their trip.

Tickets prices are $59 per person (ages 3 and up).


Kingdom Keepers Quest
The Kingdom Keepers Quest is a self-guided group adventure through the Magic Kingdom for youth groups who've read The Kingdom Keepers books by Ridley Pearson. They also have a new Quest available for Animal Kingdom (relates to the second book in the series).

Families who are interested in participating in more a more "group-ish" activity during our trip to Disney may enjoy either of these programs. It requires students to work together to solve the clues, and students seem to really bond over the experience.

Students (with at least one parent) will meet at Magic Kingdom or Animal Kingdom on Saturday morning. Register for one or the other, but not both. I'll meet the Magic Kingdom group first to get them started, then go to Animal Kingdom to get that group going. (I'll update the meeting time for both parks later.) The materials were written for students in grades 5-9, but younger and older students can do the quest if they're interested.

Plan on at least three hours to complete the quest, depending on attraction lines and how fast the kids figure out the clues. (Our group took longer than that last year, and enjoyed every minute of it.) More information about the Quest can be found
here.

The cost of either Quest is
$10 per student (parents are free).

Universal and SeaWorld Tickets
I'm offering group Universal and SeaWorld tickets again this year. I highly recommend both parks if you have the extra time for them.

Universal
Universal tickets are $112 per person (ages 3 and up). This covers entry to both parks (Islands of Adventure and Universal Studios) for two days (you can visit both parks on both days, or just one park each day, whatever you prefer). The tickets will be valid from Wednesday, September 3 to Wednesday, September 17, and you can choose the days you want to visit during that time. However, you must use both days within 7 days of first use. The clock starts ticking the first time you use the ticket.

SeaWorld
SeaWorld tickets are $26 per person (ages 3 and up). This covers entry to SeaWorld on Thursday, September 11. In order to qualify for our discounted group tickets, your party must attend a 30-minute (or so) educational presentation on the morning of our visit. You're free to enjoy the park at your leisure after the presentation.

Still interested in going?
Please read the following links for more information:
Hotel Information
Disney Educational Programs
Important Things to Know
Registration Form

Important Notes
If you'd like help planning your trip, consider joining my (affectionately titled) Disney Stalkers community, where other Disney families gather to help each other.



Children under 3 get in free at all three destinations and don't require a ticket.

We get great discounts on our tickets, but we can't have more non-student tickets than student tickets (ages 3 through college-age at Disney, ages 3 through high school at Universal and SeaWorld). You'll be limited to one extra non-student ticket per student in your party. If you have more non-students in your party than students, you will go on a waiting list for extra tickets. I will distribute them (and you'll pay for them separately) as they become available.

Payment will be due in my mailbox within 7 days of the day I send your confirmation email. Please don't register until you're able to pay for your tickets. (This eliminates the need to send payment reminders.) If I don't receive your payment by the due date, your registration will be deleted.

If you need to cancel after paying for your tickets, I'll work with you to get your money back (less a $26 per person return fee) by trying to arrange for another family to take your place. I can't guarantee a refund if I have no families on my waiting list. Cirque du Soleil tickets are not refundable for any reason.

Hurricane Policy - Disney will work with us on a case-by-case basis in the event of a direct hit (or anticipated direct hit) from a hurricane right before our arrival or during our stay. There are no guarantees, but they'll almost definitely refund unused tickets. If the tickets are partially used they’ll work with us to finish the use of the tickets. If there's just heavy rain from a hurricane, they won't refund our tickets - we'll just have to deal with the rain. I'll do my best on your behalf if there's an event that impacts our stay, but there are no guarantees. Please register with this in mind.

Our group hotel will have a separate cancellation and refund policy, so be sure you understand their policy before you reserve your room. I am not responsible for payments made to our group hotel, or for their refund policy.

Our tickets are the new MyMagic+/FastPass+ tickets.

Disney World and Universal tickets will be mailed by June 30, 2014 for families who met the Priority Registration Deadline. The rest will be mailed by August 23, 2014. SeaWorld tickets will be distributed the morning of the program.