Free Dining Announced for Disney Visa Holders...General Public offer coming soon.

If you are thinking about a Disney vacation in late August or September, listen up!  Free dining has just been announced for Disney Visa holders, and they are sweetening the pot with a Disney PhotoPass Photo book.  This offer will be open to the general public beginning on May 2nd.

Here are the delicious details...

For a limited time, get a FREE dining plan when you buy the New Walt Disney Travel Co. Memories Vacation Package for 5 nights/6 days at select Walt Disney World® Resort Hotels.

The New Memories Vacation Package includes:
  • Walt Disney World® Theme Park tickets. Enjoy admission to one Theme Park per day, each day of your ticket.
  • Stay in a select Walt Disney World® Resort Hotel.
  • A Disney's PhotoPass® Photo Book to relive your Disney vacation memories! Choose from a variety of layouts and page designs and customize with your favorite photos! This 20-page book is printed on archival paper to preserve it for years to come.
  • And, for a limited-time with this Memories Vacation Package, enjoy a FREE dining plan for stays most nights 8/28-9/24/11.
For 5 night/6 day packages at select Disney Value Resorts, get the Disney Quick Service Dining Plan — includes 2 quick-service meals and 2 select snacks per person per night of your package stay, plus one Resort Refillable Drink Mug per person (refillable only at your Disney Resort Hotel).

For 5 night/6 day packages at select Disney Moderate, Deluxe and Deluxe Villa Resorts, get the Disney Dining Plan — includes 1 table-service meal, 1 quick-service meal and 1 select snack per person per night of your package stay.

As always, I would be happy to help you with your Disney Vacation Planning!


Princess Rooms at Disney. Very Cool.

As a former tomboy, I have always been a bit baffled by the whole princess phenomena.  The dresses, the tiaras, the fancy shoes and the accessories....just not me.  I always imagined that I would have a few boys and we would spend weekends in the back yard tossing a football and getting dirty.  I am sure God was chuckling at my idea when he sent me not one, but two of the girliest girls on the planet.  If they had their way the world would be pink, purple, sequined, beaded, and bedazzled.  While I am certainly much "girlier" now than I was a child, I still do not know how to play Barbie, I am not sure what to do at a pretend tea party, and sacrificing comfort for style at age 4 is just beyond me.   So what is a former tomboy mom supposed to do?  I guess the answer is what almost every other parent in the world has done... submit to the whims and desires of their offspring.  So, hello Disney Princesses, I guess I am now on board.  Which,  I guess,  means Disney made an exciting announcement yesterday...

According to the Official Disney Parks Blog:

Exciting enhancements also are taking place over at Disney’s Port Orleans Resort, with 512 Royal Guest Rooms planned to debut by March 2012. The story behind these lush rooms is that Princess Tiana (“The Princess and The Frog”) invited some of her royal pals – Belle (“Beauty and the Beast”), Jasmine (“Aladdin”) and more – for a vacation getaway. Princes and princesses of all ages can enjoy their luxurious lodging quarters, which will include ornate beds that feature headboards with fiber-optic special effects, and gold and crystal accents. Guests also can enjoy artwork and special mementos left by Tiana’s royal friends.

Photo property of the Disney Parks Blog
 So if the new princess motif is not for you, perhaps you would be interested in some of the new rooms coming to the Contemporary?

Again from the Disney Parks Blog:

Beginning this fall, guests looking for some rest and relaxation can indulge in new health and wellness suites, which will debut at Disney’s Contemporary Resort. These suites will feature bamboo flooring, 100-percent cotton linens, non-allergenic wrapped mattresses – as well as great views of Magic Kingdom Park and Bay Lake. Bathrooms on this floor also will be equipped with rainwater showers and tea tree oils. Guests staying in these suites also can enjoy the benefit of having cardio equipment right in their room. And they’ll have daily access to seasonal and organic fresh foods at the concierge lounge, and can enjoy yoga sessions and spa treatments at the resort’s renovated wellness studio.

Photo property of Disney Parks Blog
 So what do you think?  My guess it that the princess rooms will be quite popular.  A fun room at a moderate hotel?  Sounds like a winner to me!  I am not so sure about the rooms at the Contemporary.  First of all, it sounds very pricey.  I am sure it will appeal to a certain segment of the population, but an entire floor?  I am no paragon of fitness (I say as I pop a second Hershey's Kiss into my mouth), but I have no problem getting in my daily exercise just bopping around the parks!

It sounds like some of these new premium rooms will be available for booking soon!  Let me know if you would like me to add you to a notification list.  I will be happy to book your vacation as soon as they are released...and I will gladly offer up some column space if you would like to write up a review of your experience!

So...are you read to get your princess on?

Contact me at TMC Travel if I can help you plan your next Disney vacation.  As always, there is no extra fee or charge for using my services!


Disney's Give a Day Get a Day Revisited

My family and I participated in Disney's Give a Day Get a Day promotion last year.  In case you do not remember, Disney offered 1 million people the chance to make a difference in their communities by volunteering for various charities, and in exchange they could receive a free 1 day park ticket, set of FastPasses, or souvenir ear set.

My family worked with a local food bank and we collected over 700 food items that directly benefited our community.  We opted for the FastPass option for our December trip and we were thrilled to ride Big Thunder Mountain and Toy Story Mania back to back to back.  We even shared some FastPass love and gave away a set to a family  in front of us in line.

Our whole family loved the experience of working with the food bank and we have made many subsequent visits, which was, I am sure, the idea that Disney had in mind!  In fact my youngest daughter has asked for her friends to bring food instead of presents to her 4th and 5th birthday parties.  As a parent, I could not have been more proud, but what I really noticed is that all of the kids were proud of themselves!  I thanked everyone at the party for their donations, and took a moment to explain to the children that they were helping other children.  You could literally watch their little chests puff up with pride.  Adorable.

So, why am I writing about last year's promotion so long after the fact?  Well, the "baby" just turned 5 and collected 100 cans of food and $150 at her birthday party and we just dropped it off.  When I got there, I was shocked to find bare cupboards.  In fact, they have had to close their doors for the past week because they had nothing to give.  When I arrived with a trunk full of groceries and a fair amount of cash, the volunteers almost cried.  They are hoping to re-open next week and need every donation they can get.  The volunteer explained that they can use cash donations to actually purchase food from regional food banks.  In fact she explained that a $20 donation will allow them to purchase over 105 POUNDS of food.  A little bit really does go a long way!!!

I am not Disney, my pockets aren't that deep, and I cannot offer you FastPasses or a free park ticket.  What I can do is make sure that any donation you would like to make will get into the right hands.  Please email me at if you would like to help.  Or just grab and extra jar of peanut butter and a few canned veggies on your next grocery run and drop them off at your local food bank.  Times are hard, children are hungry, and you can make a difference.


Cruise News You Can Use & Friday's Mystery Announcement

Disney just made an exciting announcement about new itineraries and ports for 2012!

For the first time ever, Disney Cruise Line will set sail from three new ports in 2012 – New York, Seattle and Galveston – making the Disney family cruise vacation even more accessible to guests across the country. There are also more itinerary choices, including one special voyage to Hawai‘i.

If are a lucky Platinum or Gold Castaway Club Member, you get the exclusive benefit of booking a day early beginning April 7.  Everyone else can begin booking on Friday morning at 8:00 am.  As always, I am more than happy to help book your cruise experience.  Please call or send me an email if I can help!

Here is what future cruisers have to look forward to...

New York Sailings
Beginning May 25, 2012, the Disney Magic will sail a total of 20 cruises from New York.
  •  8-night Bahamian cruises include a day at Disney’s Castaway Cay and a stop at Port Canaveral, gateway to the Walt Disney World Resort. As part of this itinerary, you will receive a one-day Park Hopper Ticket and roundtrip transportation between the ship and resort.
  • 5-night Canadian/New England cruises will visit Halifax, Nova Scotia, and Saint John, New Brunswick.
  • 2-night cruises are perfect for Clients looking for a quick getaway at sea over a weekend.

Seattle Sailings

 Beginning May 28, 2012, the Disney Wonder® will sail a total of 14 cruises to Alaska from the Port of Seattle, Wash.

  •  7-night Alaskan cruises will call on Tracy Arm, Skagway, Juneau and Ketchikan plus Victoria, British Columbia.

Galveston Sailings

 Beginning Sept. 22, 2012, the Disney Magic will sail 12 cruises from the Port of Galveston, Texas.

  •  7-night Western Caribbean cruises will visit Costa Maya and Cozumel in Mexico, as well as Grand Cayman.

Los Angeles Sailings

In addition to 7-night Mexican Riviera cruises, the Disney Wonder will set sail on Disney’s first-ever voyage to Hawai‘i on April 29, 2012.

  • 15-night Hawaiian cruise departs from the Port of Los Angeles and includes stops at Hilo; Kahului, Maui; Honolulu, Oahu; Nawiliwili, Kauai and Ensenada, Mexico. 
  • 7-night Pacific Coast cruises will call on San Francisco, San Diego and Ensenada, Mexico. 
The Disney Dream will continue to sail 3-, 4- and 5-night Bahamian cruises. The new Disney Fantasy will offer Eastern and Western Caribbean itineraries, beginning with the maiden voyage on March 31, 2012. Sail dates for both ships are now available through December 2012.

The Mysterious Friday Announcement
Popular Disney message boards and the well connected Disney blogosphere are all abuzz about an announcement coming from Disney on Friday morning.  So what is the mysterious announcement?  Of course, the most obvious speculation is that a new round of discounts are about to be announced.  Free Dining for fall is the most repeated rumor.  Is it true?I don't know.  My crystal ball is currently out for repair.  While I will certainly be poised and ready to dial bright and early tomorrow if that is the case, I think it might be something else.  One possibility?  I think they might announce package prices for 2012 in April instead of waiting until August.  This would certainly make things easier for the Type A among us who want to get trips for early 2012 booked asap.   While I am certainly hoping for fabulous discounts for all, I would not be surprised at all if that is not the case.  So, if on Friday we learn 2012 packages are announced early, you can remember that you heard it here first!  If not, well, hopefully my crystal ball will be returned in working order shortly!




New Discounts for Deluxe and Deluxe Villa Resorts - including summer dates!

Save up to 30%* at Select Disney Deluxe and Disney Deluxe Villa Resort Hotels

This summer at select Disney Deluxe Resorts and Disney Deluxe Villa Resorts save up to 30% for stays most nights June 15 to August 13, 2011.
  • Book through April 30, 2011 for travel April 22 to May 28, 2011
  • Book through May 28, 2011 for travel May 29 to August 13, 2011
*Save 25% at Disney's Animal Kingdom Lodge, Disney's Wilderness Lodge and Disney's Polynesian Resort for stays most nights June 15 to August 13, 2011.