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Ask The Disney Experts Discuss Annual Pass Questions in the Ask The Experts forums; I could use some help from our Annual Passholders: It looks like I'm going to make 2 trips to WDW this year: 4 days alone in May, and probably 7 ...
  1. #1
    disneydame2004's Avatar
    disneydame2004 is offline Celebrate Everyday!
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    Annual Pass Questions

    I could use some help from our Annual Passholders:

    It looks like I'm going to make 2 trips to WDW this year: 4 days alone in May, and probably 7 days in August with the family. From what I've been able to figure out, ticket cost for 10 day Magic Your Way/park hopping/no expiration and an AP are almost the same (plus I'd still be 1 day short). So it would appear I'd be better getting an AP. But in the past some of the vacation package deals were for substantial discounts in August, but everybody in the room had to be on the package (which include tickets). So now I'm confused!

    My questions are:

    1. In the past (or if any have already been announced for this May or August), what kind of discounts have been offered on hotel rooms during these times (May 13-16, August 24- 31)? Moderate in May, mod or deluxe in August.

    2. Where is the best place to buy AP's? Are they available and/or discounted through AAA?

    3. Would the AP be active from the day purchased or from the first day it is used?

    4. Can 407-WDISNEY answer questions about AP discounts if you don't already have an AP?

    Thanks for your help!
    -Pat (Disneydame2004)
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  2. #2
    DisneyonaDime's Avatar
    DisneyonaDime is offline Moderator
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    Let me see if I can field some of your questions-

    First, the only time everyone in a room needs to be on the same program is if you want to do the Dining Plan that adds on meal credits. They no longer offer the Ultimate Park Hopper (Length of Stay) Pass. If you want to get an AP discount, only one person needs to have an AP. An extra bonus is that you can get up to 3 rooms discounted on 1 AP. For the discounted rooms alone, this could be the best deal.

    1) There currently aren't any AP rates for May and there might not be because of the begining of the "Happiest Celebration on Earth". For August, be assured that something will be offered. Look in June or July for announcements.

    2) Currently, the only place to get APs are online (disneyworld.com) or at the gate. They no longer sell APs at the Disney Store. There are no discounts offered through 3rd parties and there are no discounts for buying online. The price at the gate is the same as online, minus the shipping. If you don't want to pay for shipping, you can have your tickets held at the ticket office.

    3) APs are activated on the first day of use, not when they are purchased. You can buy an AP today and activated it 5 years from now and it would still be good. We like to buy ours every couple of months throughout the year. This way it isn't a big blow all at once.

    4) Disney can answer some questions- You can also find all of the AP discounts on Allearsnet.com and soon I'll have them posted on my new site Disneyonadime.com.

    I think the AP is the way to go. Especially if you are looking at taking two trips this year, with your last being in August. Remember, an AP is not like a Season Pass to Six Flags is. It is good for 366 days from when it is first used (make up your own "year"). You will have 9 more months (Aug-May '06) to squeeze in another trip. With an AP a $49 a night resort + a last minute cheap airplane ticket= a last minute weekend trip to Disney World anytime of the year.

    Also, you can get 10% off merchandise, and you can buy the new Disney Dining Experience card. This can get you 20% off most of your meals.

    If you have any more questions, let me know.
    Last edited by DisneyonaDime; 02-12-2005 at 12:46 PM.
    Chris
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  3. #3
    Liv2CdWorld is offline A-Ticket holder
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    Quote Originally Posted by disneydame2004
    1. In the past (or if any have already been announced for this May or August), what kind of discounts have been offered on hotel rooms during these times (May 13-16, August 24- 31)? Moderate in May, mod or deluxe in August.
    I have gotten room only discounts (both with a code and AP) for about 30% off rack rate in May. I have never gone in August, so I can't help you there.

    Quote Originally Posted by disneydame2004
    2. Where is the best place to buy AP's? Are they available and/or discounted through AAA?
    You can get your AP's at Guest Services in Downtown Disney, MGM, Epcot, Animal Kingdom and Magic Kingdom. You can also purchase them online at Disneyworld.com.

    [QUOTE=disneydame2004]3. Would the AP be active from the day purchased or from the first day it is used?
    If you purchase the AP at any park, you will recieve an activated pass that starts the day you purchase it.

    If you purchase it online, you will receive a voucher that you will need to take to guest services when you arrive at the World. You will then receive an activated pass.

    Quote Originally Posted by disneydame2004
    4. Can 407-WDISNEY answer questions about AP discounts if you don't already have an AP?
    It's worth a shot. They may just be able to tell you the current hotel discounts.

    Personally, I always try to go for the Annual Pass. Not only will you be able to go this year, but you could always schedule another trip next year right before your passes expire.

    Good luck with your decision!

    Here you leave today and enter the world of yesterday, tomorrow and fantasy - Walt Disney

  4. #4
    MandaBella's Avatar
    MandaBella is offline "She who must be loved."
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    Quote Originally Posted by DisneyonaDime

    3) APs are activated on the first day of use, not when they are purchased. You can buy an AP today and activated it 5 years from now and it would still be good. We like to buy ours every couple of months throughout the year. This way it isn't a big blow all at once.
    If you buy an AP at any WDW gate, it will be activated pass when you purchase it. You do not receive the voucher. Has this changed recently?


    One thing about the AP, be wary of its "power." I'm serious! Once you have one you start trying to find all sorts of ways to get down there to use it. Sure you bought it with just 2 trips in mind, but trust me....you'll be trying to work in a third.
    Amanda
    always plotting, planning, and looking forward to our next adventure...


  5. #5
    DisneyonaDime's Avatar
    DisneyonaDime is offline Moderator
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    I agree with Amanda- an AP is very addictive. Ours expires on the 22nd of this month and I am still hopelessly looking for one more trip. It's not going to happen, yet it still consumes me. (we made 4 trips last year)

    Yes, if you buy at the gate the assumption is that you are going to use it, so it is automatically activated. It is the same as when you go to the gate to trade in your voucher. They will give you an activated ticket with the assumption that you are about to walk into the park.

    This could be a watch out for those that buy APs at the park for future use. Other places that you can buy APs activated are at Downtown Disney, MCO airport, or at any of the Disney Outlet Stores in Orlando. Beware buying APs there unless you are ready to use them.

    Amanda also brought up a good point about the vouchers. If you buy APs online, you will not receive an actual annual pass but rather a voucher that you exchange for an annual pass. When you are ready to enter the parks for the first time, go to any of the ticket windows in order to make the exchange. Don't forget your I.D.
    Chris
    Co-author of "Disney on a Dime"- now for sale !!!! Get our new book, plus some extra free goodies when you buy from our site-
    www.DisneyonaDime.com
    Find daily and weekly tips, updates, and now- our book.
    "You can drop a grand in Disney World like that!"- Frank Costanza

  6. #6
    disneydame2004's Avatar
    disneydame2004 is offline Celebrate Everyday!
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    Thanks for all the info - I knew I could count on you guys!

    I was concerned about the 'addiction' side of it - I don't even have one yet and I was already thinking about that third - or fourth - trip .

    Being able to get multiple rooms on the discount is a plus, too - I'm still hoping to get some of my family to join us in August. Sounds like AP is the way for me!

    Chris, I think I'm going to need your book ASAP! Please let us know when your website goes live!

    Do you think that the Disney Dining Experience card is worth it for 2 (planned) trips? Are the discounts good for your whole party, or just the person with the card?
    -Pat (Disneydame2004)
    Dream Team Auction Coordinator




    Help make a child smile! Dream Team Project Firstgiving Page

  7. #7
    DisneyonaDime's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by disneydame2004
    Do you think that the Disney Dining Experience card is worth it for 2 (planned) trips? Are the discounts good for your whole party, or just the person with the card?
    I think the card is worth it if you plan on eating out. The 20% can go towards character meals, high-end meals, and even counter-service restaurants at the Value Resorts. The card is only $50 and that can be re-cooped in a couple of sit-down meals. The card is good for food and drinks (both alcoholic and non-alcoholic).

    The great thing about the card is that every person does not need it. It is good for up to 10 people at the same table. This can work out great for groups and families.

    If you don't want to go for the card, you can still get 10% off some restaurants in the parks and resorts with an AP. This is good for up to 4 people per AP. The number of participating restaurants is smaller and there are restrictions (some are only available M-F and only for lunch).

    I'm feveroushly(sp?) working on the site as we speak. The template is complete, now I just need to fill it up.
    Chris
    Co-author of "Disney on a Dime"- now for sale !!!! Get our new book, plus some extra free goodies when you buy from our site-
    www.DisneyonaDime.com
    Find daily and weekly tips, updates, and now- our book.
    "You can drop a grand in Disney World like that!"- Frank Costanza

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