Disney articles

Passing Time between Disney World Vacations

July 14, 2010
by Aaron DelPrince (ADP on the DISboards)
DIS Contributing Columnist

 

It’s the last day of your Walt Disney World vacation. The sun is rising and your alarm sounds loudly next to you. Thirty seconds later your phone rings. It’s your wake-up call with the sound of Mickey Mouse reminding you to get your day started. But, there’s a problem; you don’t want your day to start, let alone end. You sit on your bed and realize today is the day you’ve dreaded for the past few days; departure day. It’s the day your family leaves the fantasy and magic behind and heads home where reality is waiting for you to return.

You’ve got a lot of work to do before you leave your resort. There’s packing everything (including trying to fit in all those souvenirs!) or maybe checking your luggage and picking up your boarding pass at the airline check-in desk. Either way, you’re going home and it’s simply depressing.. There’s really a double-whammy effect working on your emotions. Not only is your vacation ending, but you are leaving your favorite place in the world.

For Disney World theme park fans like us, we are in our comfort zone when we visit Orlando. We know where everything is, how to handle certain situations, and even how to outsmart other guests when it comes to touring the parks. We love visiting Disney World, but dislike leaving our comfort zone.

You shouldn’t feel too bad though. There are some activities you can do when you return home to tide you over until your next vacation to Walt Disney World. Granted, some of these activities may be more effective than others, but in the end, all of them combined will help you and your family pass the time until you return to the most magical place on earth.

Plan Your Next Disney World Vacation

Most of us would agree this is the best way to get over your post Disney vacation blues. There is something very gratifying when you depart Orlando knowing you will return in the future. It helps ease the pain as you return to the reality of your everyday life.

Just after you return home, make sure to select your next vacation dates (if you haven’t already). Over time, continue to plan other aspects of your trip including; selecting your resort, choosing your dining locations, making advanced dining reservations (ADRs), what parks to visit on which days, and even selecting what type of special experiences your family might try for the first time. Although this may seem like a lot of work, you will find it can get you very excited about your upcoming vacation. If just selecting aspects of your trip is more your speed and you don’t want to continually make phone calls to Disney for reservations, consider using a travel agent. They can make those phone calls for you and assist with other details of your vacation.

Visit Disney World Message Boards

The world is a big place. Many Disney World theme park fans like us who are passing the time until their next vacation want to share and obtain information as well. Disney World message boards, like DISboards.com, are open 24 hours a day for us to post and read information about Disney World. You can visit the boards as much as you would like depending on your daily schedule.

There are several topics you can discuss about your upcoming vacation. There are so many topics and so much information you will certainly find someone to help answer any questions you have, and you'll find so much useful information to consider for your upcoming trip. If you need to fill your Disney void make sure to visit the message boards. It’s a quick and easy way to pass the time before your next visit to Disney World.

Writing a Trip Report

A trip report is a day-to-day reflection of what transpired during your vacation. It is usually written in chronological order along with pictures that coincide with the days events.

A trip report is a great way to reflect on your recent vacation. It allows you to look back and relive many details of your vacation. You may find yourself smiling and laughing as you write details of your family’s adventure.

If you choose to write a trip report, make sure to start it immediately after you return home from your trip while the details are fresh in your mind. The longer you wait the more details you may forget. Sometimes you can look at your photos to remember certain details, but you still may forget other details if you wait too long.

Once you’ve completed your trip report make sure to keep track of it. You’ll want to look at it again in the future to relive your trip. Also, consider using it to avoid making the same mistake twice, or reminding yourself to try something you forgot to experience during your last trip. However you choose to use your trip report it’s another tool to use while you pass the time until your next vacation. Be sure to visit the ‘Trip Reports’ board on the DISboards to view others who have written a trip report. It will help you write your own trip report in the future.

Scrapbooking

Another way to live through the eyes of Disney World until your next vacation is to put together a scrapbook of the past trip. A scrapbook is an album into which clippings, notes or pictures can be pasted. You can take many of your past Disney World pictures, buttons, pins, etc and place them into your scrapbook. It’s a great way to reflect on your past vacation while using your imagination along the way.

Similar to a trip report, be sure to start your scrapbook as quickly as possible after returning from your trip. This way you will not lose or misplace any key pieces of the scrapbook. Visit the ‘Scrapbooking’ board on the DISboards to learn more about scrapbooking and how to put one together.

Listen to Disney Theme Park Music

Who says Disney World music only exists in the theme parks? Over the past few years the advent of Internet radio has created several genres of music including Disney theme park music. Whenever you need to feel like you are in the theme parks, plug in your headphones and tune into such stations as DIS Radio. You can listen to park music 24 hours a day whenever the mood strikes you. It’s a great way to feel like you are in the parks. Listening to DIS Radio is all about theater of the mind. For instance, hearing the background music around Spaceship Earth gives you the feeling of walking through Future World in EPCOT, or hearing the music of the Tumble Monkeys makes you feel like you are watching the Festival of the Lion King in the Animal Kingdom.

Listening to theme park music is one of the best ways to pass the time until your next trip. It can create a lot of images in your mind of the many different areas inside the theme parks.

Watch Disney World on your TV

You know that machine under your TV and that stack of DVDs in your cabinet collecting dust? Well, somewhere in there are probably a few of the Disney World planning DVDs. Watching these planning DVDs can help your family relive the magic on occasion. It’s a great way to watch the parks and resorts right in the comfort of your own living room.

Also, keep an eye on your TV programming schedule. There are times when specials about the Disney theme parks will air on many cable TV networks like the Travel Channel or the Discovery Channel. Be sure to check your future programming for shows and times when Disney theme park specials will air.

Listening to Disney World Podcasts

It’s hard to believe there are so many other people like us who love the Disney theme parks. Some people produce shows on a weekly basis discussing the various aspects of Disney World. These shows, called podcasts, are Internet radio shows discussing different topics. One such show called the DIS Unplugged is an example of a podcast based on topics of Walt Disney World. Listening to these shows on a weekly basis provides information on what is happening at the Walt Disney World theme parks. It keeps you connected by providing weekly news stories, attraction updates, restaurant reviews and more. Listening to these shows not only passes the time between Disney World visits it keeps you informed of the changes which happen on a seemingly weekly basis.

Finally

I’ve always said the best part of any Disney World vacation is the day it starts and you have everything in front of you. However, the last day of your trip can be the polar opposite of your first day. Just remember, there are actions you can take to ease the pain of returning home and passing the months ahead before you see Mickey Mouse and pals again.

We’ve covered some of the ideas of how to pass the time between Walt Disney World vacations, but there are many more to share. Some people may have their own ways to pass the time. Please feel free to share your family’s ways of passing the time between visits in the discussion forum below. We’d love to hear them so others can have more ways and options to get through the difficult period between Disney World visits.

“See ya real soon!”


20 Comments
Kim
My friends and I usually do most of these... we particularly enjoy getting together to listen to Disney music and especially to watch Disney movies, planning DVDs, etc. When we do this, we usually wear Disney clothing (sometimes our Mickey/Minnie ears, too) and make foods reminding us of Disney. This past time my friend made the bread they make at the Luau at the Polynesian. We also made Mickey Waffles with my Mickey waffle maker. And we always talk about upcoming trips!

christine
LOVE LOVE LOVE the idea of the webcams !!!!!!!!!!!!!!

christine
These posts are so funny to read, people at work think i am crazy when i return from WDW and begin planning another trip - all people that have never been !! they just dont understand when you say the place is truly magical !! I was in WDW in April of 2010 with my family and since then we have added on to our family with a daughter in law and a new baby, my daughter in law has never been and i am just dying to see her face standing on main street usa looking ahead at the castle, gives me goose bumps just thinking about it...lol . currently my next WDW vacation is 2-3 yrs away : 0 ( .... its KILLING ME !!!! hubbby wants to do a cruise in april, and yes I have suggested the Disney cruise SEVERAL times but hes not biting, wants to do a vacation with just him and I .... *sigh* I shouldnt complain but im looking forward to my next disney vacation more than i am looking forward to my cruise....lol- cant wait to hang with the Mouse again : 0 )

Stu
My wife and I were at the world two months ago....we just booked again for November. It is painful to be away from there any longer than 6 months. 112 days until we are there again...this time will be 14 days. We can't wait.

Paul
It is nice to know I have company in the way Disney world makes me feel. I have four daughters and we are going back over Christmas break this year. I can't wait to see their faces especially the 21 month old. It's her first. My wife laughs at me because I check the Disney site pretty much everyday, but I love it. It truly is a magic place.

Brandy
I agree with this....Every trip I make to Walt Disney World I already have another upcoming. I was there with some friends over Memorial Weekend and I will be back on Labor Day weekend, another trip in October with my nephew, and back in Feb next year with my husband for his 40th birthday. Several people ask me why I like to go so often...I tell them, "It's the magical feeling you feel once you have arrived and the entire time you are there"...I know that souds cliche but it's true for me. Disney World is my most favorite place on earth and I look forward to each visit. I also like to plan other trips for people too, that helps pass the time between each trip. If Disney ever opened an office in Nashville TN I will be the first in line for employment.

Kevin
I definitely agree about the last day of the trip, but you didn't mention the part about having to be literally dragged out of the resort kicking and screaming. It seems to happen to me at the end of every Disney vacation. (Just kidding-sort of.) I do most all of the things too in between time. It seems like my wife and I are always helping a co-worker plan their 1st trip. It's been 3 years since our last trip, so we are hoping to go again next year.

Cathy Peckiconis
YUP I tried all those and I am still "homesick".

Lenora
I constantly check ride wait times on my phone (WDW Lines App) and am always telling the kids, "Hey, there's only a 30 minute wait for Soarin'" or something like that. And I listen to dis radio on my computer at work. When I clean the house I play my WDW parks music CD. And I plot how to convince my husband that we really do need another trip.

Debbie
{LOL!} Your description of "last day" is soooo accurate!!! We make sure we at least get a "last meal" at a favorite spot so we can say "goodbye". You hit the nail on the head with "comfort zone". I have a hard time explaining this to folks. And we do ALL the things you mentioned in-between. We even look through the Walt Disney travel books and "validate" the descriptions!!! Ok-so that's a really slow Saturday nite!

Susan McNaught
I like the idea of the game "I'm thinking of . . ." We play a game in the pool where the kids run off the diving board as I shout out a question, they have to answer as they are jumping off. Questions like "What is your favorite Disney resort?", your favorite ride at MK, your favorite country at Epcot, favorite character greeting, etc. The kids get such a kick out of it!

Fran
This is great. My boyfriend and I visited in June for Star Wars weekend and we have a planned trip for September with my sister, brother in law and neice and nephew and I am going insane right now because I don't want to rush our summer but I really wish it was September. Thank you for all the advice.

Crystal
This is great!!! We are going in November and I just told my husband the daily countdown until the Magic starts!! We are always talking about our next trip that we actually went somewhere in Florida other than Disney this summer and people didn't believe us!! These are great ideas and things I can do with my boys!! thanks for sharing your knowledge!!!

Mandi
I normally do 95% of the things listed above and it usually makes my urge to go back even worse - but in a good way! My way to to relive the magic is to help my friends and family plan their trips for them. Most of them are not as well versed in Disney as I am, so they all ask me for help and of course I am overly joyed to help. Many are making their first trips, so it is so much fun to help plan and give them all my tips and tricks while visiting. It keeps my urges at bay and I have so much fun doing it...and the best part is hearing all the wonderful stories they have to share with me when they get home!

Terri
I am in that mode right now. We won't be back until Oct. and that seems so far away. So I am working on my scrapbook from previous visits and planning our next trip. It is fun to see what new information is coming out about the Food and Wine Festival which we plan to attend. And of course the message board and podcasts keep me up to date and excited until we can get there in Oct.

Wayne
What would be nice is maybe some webcams around the parks and DTD. The we could atleast see the magic and what is going on. They could turn them off and replay none event times at that point (ie. MNSSHP or MVMCP).

Nancy
We go several times a year to WDW, but still, the time in between can seem like forever to my grandkids. We made up this game "I am thinking of....and then we give a clue to something at Disney World.." and then the rest of us try and guess what they are thinking of! The grandkids come up with some of the greatest clues ever. For instance: From my oldest granddaughter (she was 5 at the time of this clue)I am thinking of a ride at all four parks... answer: her stroller! I always begin the game with: I am thinking of gram's favorite ride at the MK....and they all shout out Dumbo!!! They come to my house every Sunday for dinner and hardly a Sunday passes that we don't play our game! We also have a wall calendar in the back hallway that we mark off the days....the visual helps them realize that it isn't very long until the next trip!

Rachel
Our family is the same way. We have fallen in love with the Disney experience. But this year's a little tight and since we don't live near by we are going to try and plan one for the following year. Thanks for telling us about dis radio. It has made my day.

DexLabDeeDee
I like to use Picasa to make a music slideshow of my Disney pictures. I recently used my pictures with the song "Celebrate You" by Corbin Bleu (the one all around the Disney parks for Disney's "What Will You Celebrate?" promotion). It was fun to pick pictures that would reflect the music and words. Every once in awhile, I watch it to give me a warm fuzzy and to remind me I have a lot to celebrate! Memories always live on!

Rina
I totally agree. Couldn't make it to the WORLD this summer, like usually-----reading and hearing other reports, makes me feel as if I am there! THANKS!

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