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Some final thoughts about our trip

Discussion in 'Trip Reports' started by Vikki, Sep 4, 2013.

  1. Vikki
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    Vikki Serious Forum Regular

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    Just thought I'd do some final thoughts on our trip. I'm not going to do it all in one go cause I'll forget something :wink:

    Transport

    Not flying direct:
    We flew from Gatwick to Toronto and then from Toronto to Orlando, with Air Canada. We stopped in Canada for a little over a week so it wasn't like a real indirect flight on the way. However on the way back, it was :yes: I don't know if it was just Toronto airport that was particularly good but it was so easy. It saved us an absolute fortune doing it that way, so to be honest I can't see us flying direct any more to be honest - unless we find a cracking deal. I was worried about bags transferring onto the next plane, and getting to the next plane in time, but I needn't have worried at all. We literally walked off one plane, turned a corner, walked through to connections, got through there, and we were at the next departure gate. I'd say between getting off the flight, and being in the departure lounge for the next one, was no more than 20 minutes. The bags all arrived safely and with no problems at all. What I also liked was that the first flight was just over 2 hours, and the second one was just over 6 hours. Even though I hate flying, this really broke the trip up, and was nowhere near as bad as I expected.
    I'd also definitely fly Air Canada again. They had a great on demand entertainment system which was fantastic.
    We'd paid for extra legroom seats too, only £30 or so, so very cheap. We had masses of room, as we were in the bulkhead and exit rows. Very impressed for such a small charge!

    Disney buses vs hiring a car
    I love Disney buses, really I do. I think they're quick and very convenient. We didn't have any problems with them at all, but after a couple of days they were irritating us. It was the constant wondering if we'd just missed one, if it'd be busy and we'd have to stand, getting the buggy and the kids on and off, really silly little things. It was just annoying though. We'd hired a car a few days into the trip and had only planned in having it for a week. We actually decided to extend it. Alamo were great and extended it for a week, at a great price. Also, because we'd extended it, they upgraded the car, even better! So we ended up using the car most of the time. We were never parked too far from the front and rarely used the tram. It also meant we got to use the monorail to the Magic Kingdom more, which was brilliant as we all love the monorail. I thought it might annoy Anthony as he wouldn't be able to drink - but we just kept Bud in the chillier for the evenings :lol:
    We decided that we'd hire a car for longer on furniture trips. Just made life so much easier.

    That'll do for now.....not sure what to ramble about next :wink:
  2. Britchick
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    Britchick Serious Forum Regular

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    Good observations, must caution though due to experience that while when they work well indirect flights are great, when they go wrong... Flight delay... Delay through security on arrival etc then you can be faced with grappling with staff to get on the next flight or even having to stay over night in a hotel. Having said all that though the savings can be great and with the price of flights in school holidays being so extortionate I would probably take the risk in the future.


    I like having the car to go to the parks and back for the same reasons as you Vikki, wasn't as bad with the buses when Caitlin and I went in December but it certainly stopped us doing things like visiting some resorts.
  3. Vikki
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    Vikki Serious Forum Regular

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    I think having two little kids and a buggy didn't help with the bus. Perhaps when they're older it won't be so bad.

    I was worried about the flight going wrong, I guess we were just lucky. It helped that Toronto was a brilliant airport though :yes:
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  4. Johnie
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    Johnie Budget Queen Forum Host

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    I hate connecting at airports but it sounded like yours was a breeze! I like the idea of breaking the long trip up.

    I have never carried little kids in strollers but I LOVE having a car and driving. I have no patience for the busses. I also really like having a seat in my car.
  5. Vikki
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    Vikki Serious Forum Regular

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    Port Orleans French Quarter:

    This is the only resort we've ever been back to. We try to make it a habit of staying somewhere different on each trip, but this year it was Anthony's choice, and he loves this one so much that we decided on this one.

    The size of the resort is such a plus. It is really small. There's only one bus stop and only a few buildings. It has beautiful walkways and hidden gardens that really make you feel like you're not in the middle of Florida. Nowhere is far to walk.

    We asked for a quiet room on the top floor. We got a lovely corner room on the top floor, in building four. It was absolutely perfect! We had a lovely view over gardens, which took you right to either the bus stop or the car park. The room was the normal size for a moderate and we had two double beds. Here was a curtain between the main bedroom and the double sinks, and then there was a door that lead you to the toilet and main bathroom. There was plenteous of room in the drawers and on the hanging rail for our three weeks worth of things. The drawers were a great deal deeper than I expected and you could get loads in them. The room had a new flat screen TV as well, which was great. The only slight annoyance was I couldn't work out how to manually change the air con. It wasn't a big deal though. Oh yes, there was also no working fridge. We expected this as we knew they were being replaced for safety reasons, but since it was still there I thought there might be some sort of note to explain to guests why it wasn't working. No big deal though as we actually bought a cool box and filled it with ice, which was more efficient than the fridge anyway, which I never think is that cold.

    The transport here was pretty decent. I've spoken about the buses already, but they also have a boat to DTD here as well. We used it a few times and never had any issues with it.

    I used the washing machines a couple of times, although the first few times they were broken, which was a real pain. They also don't have the coin slots any more, it's all done by credit or debit card, which is a real pain for non US people, as you then have to pay the currency transfer fee too. I preferred it when you could just put the quarters in. They were efficient though, and very quick.

    The pool was great. Ben loved the water slide. We made use of the life vests for Ava, and she thought these were great as she could splash around without us holding her. There were lots of pool activities going on during the day. There was also a night time movie every night, just behind our building (which we never found to disturb us at all).

    There is no sit down restaurant here, but there is one a few minutes walk away at Riverside. The food court here was pretty good though. Fairly basic, but fine for a quick meal. The beignets of course are wonderful, as are the ice cream cookie sandwiches. I got rather fond of their Angus bacon cheeseburgers too! We didn't eat here many times, maybe three or four, but each time it was pretty good. The new rapid fill mugs were introduced when we were here, can't say we noticed much difference in using them to be honest.

    As some of you might have seen, we had a wonderful experience with concierge who organised a very special card for Ben from Mickey and friends who delivered him his 'lost' hat :wink: All of the cast members we encountered were wonderful - as usual! One morning Ben was I'll so I had to cancel Chef Mickeys. I wasn't sure I'd be able to due to the credit card reservation thing. I was told it was never an issue for illness. They even asked if I needed any medical assistance. Superb service. Mousekeeping was also very good, they had a lot of fun rearranging cuddly toys and towel animals.

    Generally, it really was a fantastic stay. Even though I'd like to try somewhere new next time, FQ remains somewhere I'd go back to again and again.
  6. keith
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    keith Camera nut Staff Member Administrator Forum Host

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    Great report! I really really really like POFQ!

    We went through a phase of staying at POR several times a year for a few years and every time someone mentioned POFQ we kinda said yeah but we like POR.... of course once we tried POFQ it's hard not to prefer it! the size, the overall snoozyness :) of the place is just great.

    I'm someone who finds its very difficult to wind down from a very stressful job and to be honest, one of the only times I've completely managed it was at POFQ
  7. Vikki
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    Vikki Serious Forum Regular

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    Totally agree! We've stayed at Riverside too and although it was beautiful, the homeliness of FQ just can't be beaten :)
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  8. Britchick
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    Britchick Serious Forum Regular

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    Love love love French quarter! My favourite were the chicken strips in the food court mmmmm
  9. Vikki
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    Vikki Serious Forum Regular

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    Oh yes, they were good! Ava called them chicken yoghurts....she can't quite say nuggets :D
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  10. Watchinherskip
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    Watchinherskip Better known as "That Guy"

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    So glad you had a nice stay at PROFQ. We certainly enjoyed our stay there. We too found it to be the right size. We loved the boat to DTD as well. Makes me want to go back...thanks for the report.

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