I know I’m in the middle of writing my August Grandeur of the Seas trip report, but I have to also start my DISNEY WORLD trip report! So I’ll probably be alternating, but to read straight through either report, be sure to check my Trip Reports tab where I will have links so you can follow in order.
- Who–myself, my two daughters, my cousin, her two daughters
- What–all girl cousin trip!
- When–August 11-18th
- Where–Polynesian/Bay Lake Tower
- Why–one last hurrah before school and soccer start, to use our DVC points, we all have an annual pass, and WHY NOT?!
So we knew we wanted to go in August, but had to plan around school and soccer schedules, and other family vacations. Also, because I am a Disney Vacation Club Member, my new points came available August 1st. So I had to plan for some time after that. My cousin, Alex, had already made her reservation at Polynesian Village Resort, by renting DVC points. She planned to arrive 3 days before us. We had gone once in August before and I swore NEVER AGAIN! It’s so dang hot, and it rained every day. But alas, August it was! After several changes of resort for us, we decided on Polynesian Village Resort and Bay Lake Tower. I wanted to do the split stay so I could experience more than one resort to share with my Disney clients.
About a month ago, we made the decision that my oldest daughter would not be able to make the trip. She is on a premier soccer team and we had gotten the schedule. You guessed it…a tournament! It’s her first year on this team and we just didn’t think it was a good idea to miss several practices and then a tournament. So it would just be my youngest daughter and I making the trip.
We had been cruising from August 2-11th from Baltimore. Upon return to Baltimore, we had flights booked leaving at 1:30 p.m. ish. After researching, I saw there was a flight that left at 11:05 a.m., and there were varying times you could depart the ship. So I called Southwest and made the switch and canceled my oldest daughter’s ticket! It was super easy, and we now have a credit for her to use.
We departed the ship around 8:15 a.m., got our luggage, went through customs and met my husband in the parking lot by 8:40 a.m. We headed directly for the airport. He dropped us right around 9:00 a.m. There was a flight leaving at 9:45 a.m. ish that I inquired about at the counter, but it was too late because our luggage still had to be checked. It would not have made the plane! So we could leisurely make our way to our gate. One note at security…we had to take out any electronics that were larger than a cell phone. I’ve never had to take my iPad out before. Also, all food/snacks had to be taken out and put in a separate bin. (This was the moment I found the huge zip loc bag my mother had given my daughter in case she got hungry. It was filled with chocolate twizzlers and caramel creams…)
We made it through security and headed to our gate. We weren’t hungry because we had eaten breakfast on the ship before we got off. I caught up on some work things and Kinsey caught up on her YouTube. By the way…I LOVE MY NEW AMERICAN TOURISTER MICKEY LUGGAGE!
We had a great flight, and once in Orlando, made our way over to the B side to head to the Magical Express transportation area. I noticed a new sign! AND hand sanitizer! That was a definite difference I noticed on this trip. Hand sanitizer dispensers near or in most restaurants on Disney property. I am a fan!
This was about 1:45 p.m. on a Saturday. Look how empty it is! The Polynesian was lane 2 and we were the only ones in it!
A few people did eventually come in behind us before we were able to board a bus. But it was still very empty in this whole area!
If you are brand new to Disney World, or have never used Disney’s Magical Express, GO HERE to read all about it! It really is so convenient. In summary:
- Disney will send you luggage tags in the mail once you register with Magical Express. They are yellow, and you attach them to any luggage you are checking at your airport.
- You get to the airport and make your way to the B side of Orlando Airport and head down to the Magical Express. Watch for signs! And there’s a map they will send you with your luggage tags. DO NOT GO TO BAGGAGE CLAIM if you put the yellow tags on your luggage!
- You scan your Magic Band at the check in area, and they tell you which lane number to get in.
- You board the bus and they drop you directly at your resort!
- Your luggage will be delivered to your room…normally within 4 hours of arrival at the airport.
WHAT I PACK IN MY CARRY ON! Since it can take up to 4 hours to receive your luggage, pack your carry on with any essentials you think you might need in that time frame. For me: Wallet, electronics, chargers, medication, deodorant, bathing suits if I think we will swim, MagicBands, a brush. This is all in case the luggage does not show up before we head to a park or to dinner, etc.
I spy! This particular bus was stopping at three different resorts. We were lucky, and drew the first stop! Taken through the bus window because we were very near the front seat.
I ABSOLUTELY LOVE THIS RESORT! This is 100% my decor and atmosphere. We actually had professional pictures taken here at this resort when the girls were 3 and 5. This was one of the spots!
UP NEXT…another piece of my cruise trip report!