Mom And Daughter Magic Kingdom Cinderella's Castle
  • On Jan 3, 2010
    Tina from AR Asked

    Hi, We decided to take our son to DW on Jan 9-15 2011 for his 5th birthday. When should I make all my reservations for hotel and dining? Will it be busy during that timeframe? Son's first trip, so I want to plan well. :) Thank You for the help.

    Hi Tina!

    By calling Disney, you can reserve a hotel room up to 499 days in advance of your intended check out date.  However, you can not make an on-line reservation until the actual 2011 pricing has been released.  Historically, rates are released in mid to late summer for the upcoming year.  If you call now, what Disney does is charge you for a  single night's rate based on this year and then automatically adjusts your rate when the 2011 pricing comes out.

    Packages can only be booked once the 2011 rates are released.  However, you can easily convert a room only reservation to a package by simply calling.  Also, if any applicable discounts come out between now and then, you can call and try to have those applied to your reservation; there are usually limited numbers and conditions so not all discount codes will apply.

    You can make Advanced Dining Reservations (ADRs) up to 180 days in advance.  You can make an ADR even if you don't have a room reservation yet.  I recommend making ADRs as soon as possible because that gives you more options in where to eat and at what time.  Walt Disney World has some amazing restaurants and the more popular ones book up fairly quickly.

    With a 5 year old, I definitely recommend making a reservation at Chef Mickey's in Disney's Contemporary Resort.  My 5 year old loves it and says it is one of his favorite things to do at Walt Disney World.  He also absolutely loves the Animal Kingdom Lodge and the main pool at the Beach Club Resort, so you might consider those two Deluxe resorts.  For ideas to help celebrate your son's birthday click here.

    Enjoy planning your magical vacation and write back if you have any more questions!
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Meet the Panelist: Bernie, Maryland

I am an engineer with NASA with prior Air Force service. My wife and I have two boys, ages 13 and 8. At home, I'm known as the "Disney Guy" and I've enjoyed helping guests plan their Walt Disney World, Disney Cruise Line, and Disneyland vacations. Learn More About Bernie

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