Illuminations
  • On Jan 24, 2017
    Kelly from NY Asked

    Hello! We are planning our very first trip to Disney World in December (New Year's Eve into the following week). Being a busy time at the park (we are staying in the park), when do you think would be the absolute cut-off to get everything booked?

    Hi Kelly,

    Welcome to the Disney Parks Moms Panel. How magical that you are Planning Your First Walt Disney World Resort Vacation! You are correct that heading into New Year's Eve will be a busy time of year. While there is no absolute cutoff date for booking, I do suggest that you book as early as possible because availability is not guaranteed. There are a few important time frames to keep in mind. 

    First, I suggest that you make your resort reservations at least 181 days in advance. Doing so will allow you to make your dining reservations 180 days in advance. Some character meals and other dining venues get booked almost as soon as the reservation window opens and, if they do have times available, those times are not ideal. On one trip, I made a late decision to make a reservation at Cinderella's Royal Table. I was able to secure a reservation about 90 days before our trip but it was for lunch at 2:20 p.m. Since that time, I have been online making reservations as soon as the reservation window opens on day 180 and have been able to choose from more ideal times.

    Second, make Fast Pass+ reservations 60 days prior to your trip. Fast Pass+ times for certain attractions often get taken quickly. We prioritize our Fast Passes for Seven Dwarfs Mine Train, Soarin', Test Track, and Toy Story Mania.

    Finally, be aware that vacations booked directly through the Walt Disney World Resort currently can be cancelled 30 days or more in advance. Cancellation fees may apply if you booked certain parts of your vacation package through a third party vendor. Also be aware that if you cancel within five days of arrival and you have room only reservations, you could be charged a fee.

    Happy Planning!

    -Donyell


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Meet the Panelist: Donyell, North Carolina

Hello from North Carolina! I am a mom of twin girls, wife, and university professor who has been inspired by the creativity of Disney for a lifetime. Since my first Disney visit when I was 12-years-old, I have been drawn to the adventures crafted by Disney Imagineers. Planning Disney vacations helps connect me to families who will find in Disney the kind of joy my family has experienced over the years. Allow me to help you map your own Disney journey so that you, too can create the memories of a lifetime! Learn More About Donyell

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