Working with a Travel Agent Specializing
in Disney World Vacations
The sheer volume of information required to plan a Disney vacation is more than the average traveler can comprehend. Just selecting the best theme park ticket options can be a daunting challenge, not to mention what time of year to travel, should you stay on property or off property, what hotel to pick, what restaurants to avoid – and that's just the start. The entirety of the DIS website, including DISBoards.com is devoted to that pursuit. But what if you don't have the time to do all that research and planning? What if you just want someone to break down all your options and guide you through the process? What if you want someone to watch for any discounts that come out and apply them to your vacation? That's where the benefit of a specialized Disney World travel agent comes in.
Why choose a Travel Agent Specializing in Disney Vacations?
Traditional travel agents aren't always a good fit for a Walt Disney World vacation. It is unique among travel destinations in many ways. Disney World is 47 square miles, consisting of over 20 resorts, 4 theme parks, 2 water parks and hundreds of dining and shopping locations. Unless you've visited the parks religiously for years, you're not going to know the gory details of what's involved in getting the most out of a Disney World or Disneyland vacation. It takes professionals who have visited the parks multiple times over many years to truly understand the nuances of planning the perfect Disney trip.
One of the reasons sites like the DIS have become, and remained, so popular over the years is that people have learned that the more knowledgeable you are about Disney, the more money you can save, and the more value you'll receive for every dollar you spend. When you know where to go, what to do and what to avoid you'll have a much better experience and get more for your hard earned dollar than if you just show up and 'wing it.' However, not everyone has the time and patience to do all that research – that's where a good travel agent can make all the difference.
What to look for in a Travel Agent Specializing in Disney Vacations
A Travel Agent Specializing in Disney Vacations should be someone with an extensive background in planning Disney vacations – not just for their clients, but for themselves as well. They should have personal experience with the destination, not just the marketing material. Your Disney World travel agent should NEVER charge you extra fees of any kind. Travel agents make their money by the commission they are paid from Disney – not from the client. Also, your travel agent should not be charging your credit card. The travel industry has been fraught in recent years with agencies that take the client's money then go bankrupt, taking your money with them. A reputable online agency will securely provide your payment information to Disney, allowing Disney to charge you directly. This way, should something unfortunate happen to the agency, Disney has been paid and your vacation is safe.
One of the most valuable services an agency can provide is to be aware of new discounts and promotions that are released by Disney after you book your vacation. A good travel agent will not only know about these discounts, but will also make sure they get applied to your reservation without you ever having to lift a finger.
Our Recommendations and Full Disclosure
Unlike many other Disney fan sites that recommend travel agents without disclosing that they have a financial relationship with them, we choose to make that clear up front. We recommend Dreams Unlimited Travel because they are part of the WDWInfo.com / DISBoards.com family. The owner of WDWinfo.com and DISBoards.com, Pete Werner, is the founder of and part owner in Dreams Unlimited Travel. Dreams Unlimited Travel was founded in 1999 (two years after the launch of the DIS) to address what Pete saw as a gap in the travel market. Traditional travel agents didn't have much experience with Disney – they based their recommendations solely on Disney's marketing material. That's great for Disney – but not necessarily for the traveler. Disney won't tell you when a restaurant isn't any good, or if there are a high number of complaints with a particular hotel, and for the most part, neither would traditional travel agents.
Dreams Unlimited Travel was the first agency to offer customized daily itineraries, discount checking AFTER you've booked your vacation (something that was rare among travel agencies at the time), and a variety of concierge level services including making your dining and recreation reservations for you, all at no additional charge. Many others have copied the business model established by Dreams Unlimited in 1999, but Dreams remains one of the top agencies selling Disney vacations in the world all these years later.
All of the information found here on WDWInfo.com and on our forums at DISBoards.com is regularly reviewed by our agents and staff and incorporated into the information that Dreams Unlimited Travel provides to their clients. Also, every Dreams Unlimited Travel agent is a graduate of the College of Disney Knowledge and each agent routinely visits Walt Disney World for their own family vacations.
Bottom Line: If you're someone who likes to have complete control over every aspect of your reservation, then working with a travel agent probably isn't the right fit for you. If, on the other hand, you would like the assistance of a well-trained, experienced professional to guide you through the planning process, a Disney specialist is the right way to go.
- Victoria & Albert's will no longer accept Tables in Wonderland - This begins August 1, 2014.
- Summertime Pals Ink & Paint Cel release - This limited release will be available at the event, or pre-order by September 25 at 5:00pm EST.
- Haunted Mansion merchandise shop coming to Magic Kingdom - The former Yankee Trader shop will become a Haunted Mansion merchandise location in the near future. The decor will be inspired by Madame Leota and will carry items from the Haunted Mansion Authentic program, such as apparel, home goods, souvenirs and more.
- Merchandise Events and Artist Appearances/Signings for August - List of authors and artists coming to the theme parks for signings and merchandise releases.
- List of characters updated for Villains Unleashed! event - Over 50 Disney villains will be taking over the park until the 13th hour!
- Beginning today, PhotoPass print packages are no longer offered table-side at character meals - This includes Chef Mickey's, 1900 Park Fare, 'Ohana, Hoop-Dee-Doo Musical Revue, Disney's Spirit of Aloha Dinner Show and Tusker House Restaurant.
- Disney Visa cardholders can book Food & Wine Festival events early - Disney Visa cardholders can book special events two days earlier than the general public - on July 29 and July 30 from 7:00am-11:00pm EST.
- Tables in Wonderland adds blackout dates for several restaurants - The Tables in Wonderland program offers Florida Residents, DVC members and Annual Passholders 20% off of all food and beverage purchases at the participating Disney restaurants.
- Information on Holiday sleigh rides at Fort Wilderness - This horse-drawn "sleigh" ride is a fun way to celebrate the season.
- Marketplace menus for Epot International Food & Wine Festival - List of menu items for the marketplaces set up around World Showcase.
- Rehab planned in November for Magic Carpets of Aladdin - The Magic Kingdom attraction will be closed 11/10 - 11/21/2014.
- Food & Wine Festival Special Dining Experiences released - Bookings for these experiences begin July 31.
- 10 Places to Wait Out a Thunderstorm at Walt Disney World
- Disney Castaway Cay Challenge added to Princess Half Marathon Weekend - Runners who are registered for any of the Disney races (5K or longer) during the Weekend have the option to complete the Disney Castaway Cay Challenge when sailing on the Disney Dream February 23-27.
- Fantasia Miniature Golf Course rehab planned off and on for the next two weeks - Gardens Course closed 7/22-7/25/2014, 7/28-8/1/2014, 8/4-8/8/2014. The Fairways will still be open.
- Blog - I Can Go The Distance: Deciding is one thing, registering is another
- Save up to 30% on a Room Only reservation at Walt Disney World! - Valid for stays most nights 10/4/14 - 11/25/14 and 11/29/14 - 12/23/14.
- 2015 WDW hotel discount released for U.S. Military - Valid for stays most nights 9/28/14 - 10/3/15.
- All 3 remaining weekends sold out for Harambe Nights - July 26, August 2 and August 9 are sold out.
- Annual passholder discount for Spice Road Table - Through 9/17/14, Annual Passholders can get a 30% discount on their bill.
- 2015 Military Ticket Discount info released - Members of the military can purchase 4-day Magic Your Way tickets with Park Hopper option for $177 each.
- Changes to reservation times for Wishes Dessert Party - Reservations are all being set for 6:00pm, no matter when Wishes is taking place. The dessert party will actually take place one hour before Wishes.
- Frozen Summer Fun Premium package is sold out for all remaining dates - This package gives guests at Frozen Summer Fun Live reserved viewing for several events.
- Wild by Design tour to be discontinued after 9/26/14 - This tour takes place at Disney's Animal Kingdom.
- Fantasy Football Convention coming to ESPN Wide World of Sports - The convention will give attendees access to ESPN talent, a live fantasy football draft and more.
- Blog - Sneak Preview of What's Coming to the 2014 Epcot International Food & Wine Festival
- Dates and pricing released for ICE! at Gaylord Palms - Using two million pounds of ice, this Gaylord Palms Resort special ticket exhibit will be transformed into the North Pole.
- Blog - Disney's Magical Express Age Limit Changes: A Parent's & Teacher's Perspective
- Blog - Five Reasons Why We're Not Seeing "Planes: Fire & Rescue" in Theaters
- Blog updated - I Just Spent $20 on FastPasses! Would You? - The author has taken the tour she discussed in the blog - check out her thoughts to see if she would do this again!
- Blog - July 2014 Magic Kingdom Construction Update
- Information for Food & Wine Festival special dining experiences - book 7/31 - Premium events will be announced July 24 and can be booked on July 31 beginning at 7:00am EST. To book, call 407-WDW-FEST (939-3378).
- Princess Half Marathon fills in less than 24 hours - The Princess Half Marathon, the Princess Enchanted 10K and the Glass Slipper Challenge are sold out, filling less than 24 hours after registration opened.
- Dolphins at Epcot will be offstage through August 7 - Guests will not be able to see the dolphins at The Seas with Nemo & Friends. The Dolphins in Depth Tour will be unavailable during this time as well.
- Changes in parking due to Downtown Disney Remodel - Speeds in the area will be reduced, as well as lanes closed. Buena Vista Drive will be expanded to 10 lanes.
- Blog - Disney Responds to Disability Access Service Lawsuit
- "Clyde and Seamore Take Pirate Island" show cancelled at SeaWorld
- PBS plans Walt Disney biopic
- Release date set for 5th Pirates of the Caribbean film
- Man arrested at Typhoon Lagoon for molesting 4 teenage girls
- Standby line to be cut off in Anna and Elsa meet and greet
- Disney's second quarter injury report: 12-year-old boy cuts fingers on Pirates ride
- 30 years in prison for man who molested girl at SeaWorld
- Possible agreement reached between Disney and unions
- Disney's CEO Bob Iger honored as CEO of the Year by Chief Executive magazine
- Trattoria al Forno to replace Cat Cora's Kouzzina at Disney World