The overwhelm of planning a Disney holiday

Back in February we decided to start planning a trip to Disneyland Paris for August 2021. Looking back, had we known about COVID-19 and what was going to happen, I probably would have put off booking. However, we can’t go back now but I wanted to write about our experience. At the time I thought it would be easy to pick when we wanted to go and where we wanted to stay. I should have known better really. It wasn’t that easy at all!

To start with, there are so many options for hotels. The official Disney hotels are close to the parks and most are within walking distance with a shuttle bus. These come with Early Magic Hours which lets you into the parks early each day. Then you have hotels that aren’t far from the parks but are not Disney official. These are obviously cheaper but don’t come with the perks.

Disneyland Hotel
Disneyland Hotel – Image courtesy of My Little Escapades

Another huge thing to think about is how to get there. We don’t drive so it’s either flying, Eurostar or coach (no thanks) for us. There is a Eurostar direct to Disneyland Paris but it isn’t cheap and there aren’t many options for times. It also doesn’t run every day of the week all of the time. In all honesty I think I’m too scared to book flights at the minute after travel companies and airlines have gone into administration.

After deciding about any of these things you then have to decide who to book with. Do you use a travel agent, book with Disney direct or book everything separately yourself to try to save money?

Disneyland Paris Newport Bay Hotel
Disneyland Paris Newport Bay Hotel – Image courtesy of Boo, Roo and Tigger Too

Once you have finally decided about all of these things there is still more. If you have booked a Disney hotel do you want a meal plan and if you do, which one? Do you want to book extra character meals? Breakfast, lunch or dinner? There are so many places to eat from quick service, buffet style and even fine dining.

Children's hot dog at Planet Hollywood
Children’s hot dog at Planet Hollywood – Image courtesy of Life According To Mrs Shilts

There are some great Facebook groups full of hints and tips and pictures of what you can expect. Beware though, these groups will make you question your choices and make you want to book more. Every time I log into Facebook there are at least a few new posts in each group and I find it really interesting to read about what other people have been doing or eating! Everyone seems super friendly though and ready to answer questions.

We have been to Walt Disney World in Florida and I don’t remember anything being as stressful. We definitely didn’t plan anything, didn’t book anywhere to eat and just winged it most days. I guess Disneyland Paris is something else altogether! However, people go back to Disney all the time so there must be a good reason for it.

Do you have favourite restaurants or rides? Maybe you prefer a certain hotel. Let me know!


The Overwhelm Of Planning A Disney Holiday

3 thoughts on “The overwhelm of planning a Disney holiday”

  1. oooo We have just booked our first ever Disney holiday. I’ve decided against joining any groups and we booked it separately. I read a few blog posts about it before we booked so we knew the features we wanted before booking. What shocked me was that we need to pre-book out dinners (with the half board meal plan) before we go to ensure we get the restaurants we want!

    1. Same here! We didn’t do anything like that in Florida. We have just upgraded our booking so we now have premium dining so have Inventions, a princess breakfast and a character breakfast booked but we need to do the rest at a later date.

      1. Ohh can you upgrade your dining plan before your stay? Does it cost to edit the booking (aside from the extra for premium dining)? Just thinking if we had a bit more spare cash nearer the time it would be a good idea 🙂

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