10 Tips for Universal Orlando’s Reopening

Universal Orlando Resort is officially open! We’re excited to take you on a walk with us as we show you what you can expect from line queues to meet and greets to dining and more in this first phase of reopening. Read on for 10 Tips on what to expect!

Universal’s Iconic Globe / Photo Credit Derek Funk

1) Whether you travel to the park via resort buses or personal car, social distancing space is always maintained (even in the parking lot by skipping a space between cars).

2) Upon arrival, you’re greeted with new and clear signage as well as ground markers to enforce the new guidelines for all guest’s health and safety.  It’s at this point ALL guests are required to pass a temperature screening before heading into the security area and through the metal detectors!

Universal’s New Signage / Photo Credit Derek Funk
Universal’s New Floor Signs / Photo Courtesy of Derek Funk

3) All of the line queue have also been updated with social distancing markers to ensure guests are 6 feet apart. Here is how Hagrids line looks; these markers continue throughout the queues for all attractions.

Photo Courtesy of Derek Funk

4) Hand sanitizer is being given out by a Team Member before experiencing an attraction.

Photo Courtesy of Derek Funk

FUN FACT: Hagrids carts are actually 6 feet apart so they will NOT be skipping every other cart and from what we have been reassured, it’s very easy to ride a coaster with a well fitting mask. Don’t worry if you lose yours, Universal has complimentary, disposable masks they will supply you with!

Photo Courtesy of Derek Funk

5) Many attractions are being added to a new Virtual Line Pass, which is a nice surprise especially for fans of Hagrid’s Magical Creatures Motorbike Adventure!

Photo Courtesy of Derek Funk

Don’t have access to the Universal Mobile app? They’ve got you covered! You’ll notice the creation of Virtual Line Kiosks:

Photo Courtesy of Derek Funk

6) While the parks were closed, Universal has been very busy! You’ll notice some upgrades, such as the new Raptor Encounter, including a new baby friend who can’t wait to meet you! ♥

Photo Courtesy of Derek Funk
Photo Courtesy of Derek Funk

7) Speaking of meeting our friends, everyone loves greeting their favorite characters and Universal has, thankfully, found a creative way! You’ll have to wear a mask and take a selfie within social distancing guidelines (notice the ground marker) but you’ll still have a great new photo op with your pals!

Photo Courtesy of Derek Funk
Photo Courtesy of Derek Funk
Photo Courtesy of Derek Funk

We ♥ the Spongebob Photo Op and give it 2 fins up!

8) As for dining, upon entrance you’re greeted with a hand sanitizer dispenser and will be seated for social distancing. Ordering and paying will be done from the mobile app.  Eventually, the mobile app will be updated with the dining plan but until then (and if you don’t have a mobile phone) ONE person from your party will walk up and go through the line to order and pay at the register (with your mask on, of course). This is a photo of Louie’s:

Photo Courtesy of Derek Funk

UPDATED 6/5/2020:
9) Another important detail to know: if a ride has a virtual line available, that is the only way you can currently experience that attraction. So, if you do not have a virtual line reservation you will not be permitted to ride. Currently we are also being told you will not be able to book more than TWO  virtual line time at once but we’ll keep you updated if that changes! (Previously, it was said to be one.)

Photo Courtesy of Derek Funk

10) We have a list of all of the most pertinent details regarding operational procedures from screening to sanitization. Please visit our website for more information by clicking here!

We hope you enjoyed our virtual tour and tips.  Are you ready and excited to visit? Contact Vacations with Character® and let’s talk about your next amazing getaway to Universal! We have some special savings to tell you about including discounts on tickets, plus we are EXPERTS when it comes to Universal vacations. Visit us at our main website for a free quote: https://universalvacationplanners.com/ or reach out and drop us a line!

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Walt Disney World Resort Introduces New Dining Plan!

At Walt Disney World Resort, they know how important it is to give guests options so they can plan their visit in a way that’s right for them. Once such new opportunity is a NEW Disney Dining Plan option for Disney Resort hotel guests.
WDW Character Dining Lifestyle Shoot. 2013. Photographer: Melanie Acevedo

This new option, along with the recently announced “Water Park and Sports Option,” are great enhancements at a great value! Here’s the scoop on both:

Disney Dining Plan Plus
Starting today, Disney Resort hotel guests can add Disney Dining Plan Plus to their Walt Disney Travel Company vacation package. A Disney dining plan offers something for everyone as it is a convenient and flexible way for Walt Disney World guests to pre-pay for meals and eat at dining locations throughout the four theme parks, Disney Resort hotels and select locations at Disney Springs. With Disney Dining Plan Plus, guests get two meals per night of their package stay to redeem at either table service restaurants, quick service locations, character dining experiences, or a combination – giving them more flexibility.

In addition, the Disney Dining Plan Plus option includes two snacks per night, one Disney Resort hotel refillable drink mug (which can be used at any Disney Resort hotel quick-service location), and at each meal, unlimited refills of fountain sodas, single-service teas and brewed coffee, or one non-alcoholic specialty beverage, and for guests 21 and older with valid ID, one beer, wine or cocktail. Meals can be redeemed in any order and in any combination. Unused meals and snacks rollover day to day.

As Walt Disney World Resort continues to grow, there are so many amazing dining experiences for guests to enjoy, from new table-service restaurants like Toledo – Tapas, Steak & Seafood and Topolino’s Terrace – Flavors of the Riviera, to favorite quick-service options like Docking Bay 7 at Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge and Satu’li Canteen at Pandora – The World of Avatar.

In addition to the new plan, Disney will continue to offer the Quick Service Dining Plan, the Disney Dining Plan and the Deluxe Dining plan as well. Not sure what plan is right for your? Contact your favorite Travel Agent and ask!

New Water Park and Sports Option
The Water Park and Sports Option, available as an add-on to select theme park tickets for $70 plus tax, allows guests to choose between enjoying the splashiest thrills at Disney’s Typhoon Lagoon or Disney’s Blizzard Beach, living their basketball dreams at The NBA Experience, attending events at ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex and testing their abilities at Disney’s Oak Trail Golf Course, FootGolf at Disney’s Oak Trail Golf Course, Disney’s Fantasia Gardens Miniature Golf Course or Disney’s Winter Summerland Miniature Golf Course.

RELATED: Tips for NBA Experience: Disney Springs

The total number of admissions you’ll receive with this option is based on the length of your theme park ticket. For example, with a 3-day ticket that includes the Water Park and Sports Option, guests will receive three visits to any of these locations. And, it’s flexible! You can use all your admissions on the same day or repeat the same experience across multiple days. This option can now be added to a Walt Disney Travel Company package, making it even more convenient.

Walt Disney World Resort is bustling with excitement right now, with groundbreaking lands like Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge, Toy Story Land and Pandora – The World of Avatar, seasonal festivals and three new films at Epcot and more. And, there’s even more on the horizon this year – from Mickey and Minnie’s Runaway Railway to Remy’s Ratatouille Adventure and the “Harmonious” nighttime spectacular!

RELATED: Largest Nighttime Spectacular Ever Created For a Disney park Coming to Epcot

There’s never been a better time to visit! Contact any of our amazing Travel Professionals by visiting our website and requesting a quote: https://vacationswithcharacter.net/ or simply drop us a line!

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Vacations with Character® has earned the distinction of being an Authorized Disney Vacation Planner

 

Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party Tickets Available Now!

Ready, set, boo! Today’s the day to start planning your visit to Walt Disney World® Resort for late summer and early fall. That includes getting your tickets for Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party!
's Not So Scary Halloween Party Tickets 2020
Courtesy of Disney Travel News

Tickets are now available for the event that transforms Magic Kingdom® Park into a ‘spook-tacular’ celebration. Fun for everyone begins on August 13 and continues on select nights through Nov. 1.

This devilishly delightful night includes the return of “Disney’s Not So Spooky Spectacular” fireworks show (hosted by Jack Skellington, telling a Halloween tale about Mickey, Minnie, Donald and Goofy), “Mickey’s Boo-to-You Halloween Parade,” the “Hocus Pocus Villain Spelltacular” stage show and more!

During the event, you’ll have the opportunity to greet favorite Disney characters (some of them wearing Halloween costumes of their own!), go trick-or-treating throughout the park, dance the night away at the Storybook Circus Disney Junior Jam and enjoy popular attractions with a special Halloween twist, including Monsters Inc. Laugh Floor, Pirates of the Caribbean, Space Mountain and Mad Tea Party.

The fun also includes Halloween décor, delicious food, specialty merchandise, and some bewitching surprises along the way.

Here are the dates for 2020:

  • August 13, 18, 21, 25, 28
  • September 1, 4, 7, 11, 13, 15, 18, 20, 22, 25, 27, 29
  • October 1, 2, 4, 6, 8, 9, 12, 13, 15, 16, 18, 20, 22, 23, 25, 27, 29, 31
  • November 1

Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party tickets start at $85 but contact us to purchase early and you’ll save $10!

We will share more details for Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party – as well as on-sale dates to Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party – soon, so stay tuned!

Contact us by visiting our website and filling out a no-obligation quote form to reach one of our agents for more information or to book a most delicious vacation: https://vacationswithcharacter.net/ or simply drop us a line!

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Vacations with Character® has earned the distinction of being an Authorized Disney Vacation Planner
Authorized Disney Ticket Seller
Vacations with Character® has earned the distinction of being an Authorized Disney Vacation Planner and Authorized Disney Ticket Seller

FastPass+ Coming to Millennium Falcon: Smugglers Run at Walt Disney World Resort

Attention Star Wars fans! You can now reserve access to fly the “fastest hunk of junk in the galaxy” at Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge at Disney’s Hollywood Studios! Read on for more information and TIPS on how to ride Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance as well.
Inside Millennium Falcon: Smugglers Run, Disney guests will take the controls in one of three unique and critical roles aboard the fastest ship in the galaxy when Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge opens May 31, 2019, at Disneyland Resort in California and Aug. 29, 2019, at Walt Disney World Resort in Florida. (Disney Parks) – Courtesy of Disney Travel News

FastPass+ reservations for Millennium Falcon: Smugglers Run are now available in the My Disney Experience app for those planning visits on or after Feb. 19.

Similar to other theme park offerings, when making FastPass+ plans for Disney’s Hollywood Studios, you can select between either Millennium Falcon: Smugglers Run or Slinky Dog Dash (pending availability). Then, you  can add additional experiences to plans, including Toy Story Mania, Alien Swirling Saucers, Rock ‘n’ Roller Coaster Starring Aerosmith, The Twilight Zone Tower of Terror, Fantasmic! and more.

Millennium Falcon: Smugglers Run combines immersive storytelling with interactive game play and makes you the protagonist of your own Star Wars adventure! Read our previous blog for more details!

RELATED: Star Wars Galaxy’s Edge: Chewy We’re Home (highlights of the Millennium Falcon)

Also, please note that during the grand opening period of the popular new attraction, Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance, Disney will continue to operate a virtual queue.  Here’s what you need to know in order to ride  Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance. You must be prepared as it’s THE MOST difficult to ride due to the fact there are NO FastPass+ or standby lines.

Photo Courtesy of Disney Destinations

How to ride’ instructions might seem excessive, after all, isn’t it just a matter of getting in a line and waiting your turn?! Unfortunately, that would be a huge NO! Not at this time. Protocol and procedure for Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance is fairly unprecedented in a number of ways and is confusing even to long-time Disney fans.

If you simply show up at park opening for Disney’s Hollywood Studios and think you’re going to be able to ‘rope drop’ Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance, you’re in for a huge disappointment. To the contrary, you’re almost guaranteed you won’t be riding if you “only” show up at the official opening time!!

There is a Virtual Queue for Rise of the Resistance. The virtual queue is the sole system for gaining a spot to ride. Rather than FastPass or a standby line, you join this virtual line via the My Disney Experience app and are notified when it’s your turn to ride. You can download this app on any mobile device. Here’s a peak:

Next, you need to understand there are Boarding Groups. For example, rather than having a set  return time (as you do with FastPass+), you might be in boarding group 30. Your return time is not specified in advance, but rather, based upon how quickly the attraction cycles all guests through who are in front of you in the virtual queue.

TIP: Here’s the tricky part — in order to access the app and join the virtual queue, you must be IN the park first thing in the morning. Currently, Disney’s Hollywood Studios has had unannounced openings occurring at around 6:30 am regardless of the official park opening time. This is always subject to change so you may want to ask a Cast Member to confirm. Keep in mind, guests are lining up BEFORE this unofficial opening time as well outside of the gates. So, our best advice is you may want to arrive a little earlier than this to ensure you can get INTO the parks before official park opening.

Crowds at Hollywood Studios Lining up Before Unofficial Gate Opening Courtesy of Tracie Perkins

Once inside, you can walk through the gift shops on Hollywood Blvd. but you will be held there and not allowed to venture further into the park. It’s a good time to check and make sure your app is working properly and your reservations and/or park tickets are properly assigned (which you should already know by having selected your FastPass+ selections by now).  Keep an eye on the time, however, because once the virtual queue opens, which happens at scheduled park opening time (i.e. if the official park opening time is 7 am, the virtual queue will open at 7 am), it opens for everyone also in the park and Boarding Groups fill up FAST and do run out. So, you’ll want to have your app open and be ready to click on the “Join Boarding Group” button!

Photo Courtesy of Vacations with Character®

TIP: if you are staying on property at an Epcot area resort, you may want to consider walking to Hollywood Studios. We do not recommend bus transportation or the Skyliner at this time. Personal car, Minnie Vans, or calling for a taxi are your best bets.

While we don’t expect the popularity of Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance to die down anytime soon, once the hype does die down (as it’s done with Millennium Falcon) Disney states they may transition to FastPass+ in the future, so be sure to keep checking back for updates!

Any questions? Contact your favorite Vacations with Character Travel Agent! https://vacationswithcharacter.net/

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Vacations with Character® has earned the distinction of being an Authorized Disney Vacation Planner

 

Largest Nighttime Spectacular Ever Created for a Disney Park Coming to Epcot

Epcot® is in the midst of an historic, multi-year transformation that is bringing a wide variety of exciting new attractions and experiences for you to enjoy this year!
Courtesy of Disney Travel News

RELATED: 5 Top Updates Coming for Walt Disney World in 2020

Set to debut later this year is “Harmonious,”which will be one of the largest nighttime spectaculars ever created for a Disney Park. As reported to us in Disney Travel News, the Walt Disney Imagineering and Disney Parks Live Entertainment teams recently reached a major milestone in the development of the show and we are excited to share the news with you!

You’ll discover how Disney music has the power to inspire and unite everyone as “Harmonious” (an innovative show filled with choreographed moving fountains, colorful lights, custom-built LED panels, lasers, pyrotechnics and more) brings to life a beautifully-crafted, nighttime,  dreamscape of Disney music and images, re-imagined by diverse cultural musicians and artists from all over the world.

You can catch an early glimpse of concepts for the show now by visiting ‘Walt Disney Imagineering Presents the Epcot Experience’, located in the Odyssey Events Pavilion or watch this short, sneak peak of what’s to come:

Visiting soon? Don’t worry, over the coming months as the show is being worked on behind the scenes and in the lagoon, you can still catch the limited-time spectacular “Epcot Forever, ” which has been described as a “love letter” to the park and tells the story of Epcot. Beginning with the first spark of inspiration and the opening day anthem, “We’ve Just Begun to Dream,” and continuing through chapters dedicated to the thematic pillars of innovation, exploration, imagination and celebration, it concludes with an all-new verse of the classic song, “One Little Spark,” leading into a spectacular grand finale promising “A Whole New World” of magical possibilities to come.

“Epcot Forever” is now showing nightly in World Showcase, and more will be shared on “Harmonious” in the months ahead as well!

Stay tuned to our blog for updates and more information to come. And if you’re interested in booking your vacation to any Disney Destination or beyond, our Vacations with Character® Travel Agents are here to help! We specialize in the happiest destinations on earth and although we never charge a fee, our experience and expertise are priceless!  https://vacationswithcharacter.net/

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Vacations with Character® has earned the distinction of being an Authorized Disney Vacation Planner

Walt Disney World Announces 3 More New Spring and Summer Discounts!

We previously shared a ‘Delicious Deal’ that included a FREE Dining Plan last week. Today, we’re excited to announce THREE more amazing offers!
WDW - PO Riverside - Food Court
Courtesy of Disney Travel News – WDW – Disney’s Port Orleans Riverside – Food Court

Staying at a uniquely themed Disney Resort hotel gives you the opportunity to enjoy convenient benefits like reserving access to select FastPass+ experiences as early as 60 days prior to arrival, Extra Magic Hours and a variety of convenient transportation options. And saving on your next vacation is easy. Read on for more details!

Related: Savor a FREE Delicious Deal for Walt Disney World Announced!

1) Savor Your Summer with a Tasty Kid-Size Package Offer at Walt Disney World Resort*

Receive a FREE dining plan for children ages 3 to 9 when you purchase a non-discounted package for you and your kid(s) that includes a room at a select Disney Resort hotel, Theme Park tickets and a dining plan. This offer is valid for arrivals most nights from May 25 – Aug. 28, 2020.  A minimum 2-night/2-day package is required, however, a 4 Night/4Day stay is suggested for maximum savings!

2) Bask in the Sun & Fun – Save Up to 25% on Rooms at a Disney Resort Hotel This Spring and Summer*
WDW – Sun and Fun Room Offer

If a package doesn’t fit your needs, we have another special offer for you! Save up to 25% on rooms at select Disney Resort hotels for stays most nights April 1-Sep. 12, 2020.

Note: Both offers expire Feb. 26, 2020, however, the number of rooms allocated for this offer is limited so don’t delay or you may miss out!

3) Florida Residents: Save Up to 30% on Rooms at Select Disney Resort Hotels This Spring and Summer*

Are you a Florida Resident? Did you know you can save up to 30% on rooms at select Disney Resort hotels for stays most nights Apr. 1-Jul. 9, 2020 when you book through Jul. 9, 2020?

Contact your favorite Vacations with Character® Travel Agent to book one of these amazing offers today! We never charge a fee and our experience plus expertise are priceless!

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Vacations with Character® has earned the distinction of being an Authorized Disney Vacation Planner

*Length-of-stay requirements may apply. Savings based on the non-discounted price for the same room. Additional per-adult charges may apply if more than two adults per room at Disney Value, Moderate, Deluxe and Studios at Deluxe Villa Resorts. Cannot be combined with any other discount or promotion. Advance reservations required. Offer excludes the following room types: campsites, 3-bedroom Grand Villas, Cabins at Copper Creek Villas & Cabins at Disney’s Wilderness Lodge and Bungalows at Disney’s Polynesian Villas & Bungalows. Displayed room savings are for select Disney Deluxe and Deluxe Villa Resorts; lower savings may be available at other select Resorts.

 

Savor a FREE Delicious Deal for Walt Disney World Announced!

Courtesy of Disney Travel News

Create the perfect recipe for a memorable escape at Walt Disney World Resort! With this offer, you can enjoy a FREE dining plan when you purchase a non-discounted 5-night/6-day vacation package that includes a room at a select Disney Resort hotel and a ticket with Park Hopper option.

You must book through January 16, 2020 and this offer is good for arrivals most nights June 27 through 28, July 5 through 7, and August 29 through September 8, 2020.

As always, the number of rooms allocated for this offer is VERY limited. Everyone in the same room must be on the same package. Theme park tickets valid for admission beginning on date of check-in and must be used within 9 days of check-in.

Courtesy of Disney Travel News

Other Important Details:

  • This offer cannot be combined with any other discount or promotion.
  • Advance reservations are required.
  • Theme park admission is required for some dining locations.
  • Some Table-Service restaurants may have limited or no availability at time of package purchase.
  • Children ages 3 to 9 must choose from the children’s menu, if available.
  • Gratuities are not included.
  • Everyone in the same room must be on the same package.
  • The offer excludes the following room types: 3-bedroom villas, campsites, Cabins at Copper Creek villas & Cabins at Disney’s Wilderness Lodge, Bungalows at Polynesian Villas & Bungalows, Little Mermaid Standard Rooms at Disney’s Art of Animation Resort.

Contact a Vacations with Character® Travel Agent to book this magical offer! We specialize in Disney Destinations, including Walt Disney World. We never charge a fee  but our experience and expertise are priceless! Don’t forget to ask about other special offers as well!!

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Vacations with Character® has earned the distinction of being an Authorized Disney Vacation Planner

 

 

Florida Residents Walt Disney World New Year Ticket Offer

Happy New Year Florida Residents! A new Discover Disney Ticket at Walt Disney World Resort will be available to you starting January 2!
Courtesy of Disney Travel News

If you’re a Florida resident, starting Jan. 2, 2020 you can purchase a special ‘Discover Disney’ Ticket at a reduced rate, valid for admission to one Walt Disney World theme park per day, any day through June 30, 2020.

RELATED: Top 5 Updates for Walt Disney World in 2020
and 5 Great Reasons to Visit Epcot in 2020

Here are the details for the return of this special offer:

The Florida Resident Discover Disney Ticket includes admission to any of the four Walt Disney World theme parks (one theme park per day). Tickets are available for purchase Jan. 2-June 27, 2020, and can be used any three or four days (depending on ticket purchased) from Jan. 2 through June 30, 2020.

  • 3-day Discover Disney Ticket for $175 plus tax ($59 per day, plus tax)
  • 4-day Discover Disney Ticket for $195 plus tax ($49 per day, plus tax)
  • Park Hopper and Park Hopper Plus options are available!

This special ticket can be used any days through June 30, 2020, and has no block-out dates, so it’s a great way for Florida residents to discover unforgettable experiences across all four Walt Disney World theme parks in 2020.

Vacations with Character® is an Authorized Disney Vacation Planner as well as Ticket Seller of all major theme park tickets, including Walt Disney World. So, why not purchase tickets from a trusted agency that’s been in the travel industry for years?! We are a Florida Seller of Travel (Registration No. ST42097) and more. Contact us through our website for a free quote or fill out a form and we’d be happy to contact you: https://vacationswithcharacter.net/happy-clients.html

Happy New Year Florida Residents and “cheers” to 2020!

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Vacations with Character® has earned the distinction of being an Authorized Disney Vacation Planner

 

Ringing In the New Year – Walt Disney World Style

Are you ready to ring in an incredible new year WDW  style? They have quite a party in store for anyone planning to welcome in 2020 at Walt Disney World® Resort!
Courtesy of Disney Travel News

Here’s a rundown of some of the can’t-miss entertainment planned for this New Year’s Eve at all four parks:

Disney’s Animal Kingdom® Theme Park  For the first time, Disney’s Animal Kingdom will stay open until midnight on New Year’s Eve! Guests can join the celebration by experiencing favorite attractions throughout the evening and enjoying all the new holiday entertainment and décor across the park. DJs will crank up the party starting at 6:15 p.m. at Discovery Island, Asia and DinoLand, U.S.A., and as midnight approaches, Guests can count down to 2020 with special celebratory moments at each DJ location or by experiencing “Tree of Life – Awaken the New Year” on Discovery Island.

And as part of this year’s New Year’s Eve celebration, Disney’s Animal Kingdom® Theme Park is pintroducing a family fun special pin trading opportunity throughout the park only on Tuesday, Dec. 31, 2019! Guests can check out pin trading boards displaying over 90 pins located throughout the lands of Africa, Asia, DinoLand U.S.A., and Discovery Island.  These displays will include Hidden Mickey pins and pins from Disney theme parks from around the world. Guests will have the opportunity to trade pins from these displays during the following times:

  • 1:00 – 2:00 p.m.
  • 2:45 – 3:45 p.m.
  • 5:45 – 6:45 p.m.
  • 7:30 – 8:30 p.m.

This pin trading opportunity is truly special so participants will have one minute to trade two (2) Disney pins off of the designated trading boards.  Be sure to get there during each allotted time frame to see what’s new to each board!*

Not only will there be special pin trading throughout the day, to ring in New Year, Disney’s Animal Kingdom will also be offering a 2020 commemorative pin – a Limited Edition New Year’s Day Pin – for purchase beginning at 7:00 p.m.  Only 1,000 were produced! For the chance to purchase this pin, Guests can visit Discovery Trading Company beginning at 7:00 a.m. to receive a numbered wristband that will allow the opportunity to purchase up to two (2) pins beginning at 7:00 p.m. also at Discovery Trading Company.**

Courtesy of Disney Travel News
  • Epcot® – It’s a party throughout Epcot from 7 p.m. – 1 a.m., with unique entertainment including DJ dance parties throughout the park, a “Silent Groove” party in Future World and two showings of the new nighttime fireworks spectacular, “Epcot Forever.” Catch it at 6:30 p.m. and 11:40 p.m. The later performance will be followed by a countdown and pyrotechnic salute to the New Year.

RELATED: 5 Great Reasons to Visit Epcot in 2020

  • Disney’s Hollywood Studios® – Ring in the New Year beginning at 7 p.m. with a high energy DJ dance party at Center Stage, leading up to a countdown to midnight and fireworks celebration. Guests can also enjoy the all-new “Wonderful World of Animation” at 6:05 p.m. and two incredible nighttime spectaculars, with “Jingle Bell, Jingle BAM!” at 6:30 p.m. and “Star Wars: A Galactic Spectacular” just after midnight.
  • Magic Kingdom® Park – TIP: Get a head start on the festivities, with a special New Year’s Eve eve presentation of “Fantasy in the Sky” fireworks at 11:50 p.m. on Monday, Dec. 30, 2019, before guests can experience it on the 31st! The same show will also be presented at 6:30 p.m. on Monday and Tuesday, for families looking to wrap things up a little earlier. Both nights will also include DJ parties in Frontierland and Tomorrowland.

If you’d like to book a last-minute getaway to celebrate the New Year in Walt Disney World, don’t delay and visit our website for a free quote from one of our experienced and amazing Travel Agents! It’s not too late to book and our services are always free for our clients!

And if you’d prefer to watch the fireworks from the comfort of your home, don’t worry, you can watch #DisneyParksLIVE: Celebrate New Year’s Eve With a Live Stream of ‘Fantasy in the Sky Fireworks’ Dec. 31 at 11:45 p.m. ET:

*Guests will have one (1) minute to trade two (2) Disney pins off the designated trading boards.  Please point to the pin(s) you wish to trade for and the cast member will pull off the board and hand to you.  All trades are final after pulled from the boards.

**A limited number of wristbands will be available for the day and will be given out on a first-come-first-served basis. Valid Walt Disney World Resort theme park ticket is required.  Queue for guests with wristbands will start 15 minutes prior to the posted return time at Discovery Trading Company. Guests will be assembled in sequential order. Wristband return must be completed between 7:00 – 9:00 p.m. on date of issue, 12/31/19.  Lost, stolen, or damaged wristbands will not be replaced. Wristbands have no cash value. Restrictions apply. Merchandise available while supplies last. Subject to change without notice.

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Vacations with Character® has earned the distinction of being an Authorized Disney Vacation Planner

Top 5 Updates for Walt Disney World

It’s been a busy week for Disney Destinations and we thought we’d share the top 5 things you might want to know about!
Courtesy of Disney Travel News
1) Three new films will debut Jan. 17, 2020, at Epcot, on the same day the Epcot International Festival of the Arts begins!

“Awesome Planet”, in The Land pavilion, showcases the Earth’s beauty and diversity in a 10-minute film featuring spectacular imagery, in-theater effects and an original musical score from Academy Award-winning® composer Steven Price.

“Beauty and the Beast Sing-Along”, in the France pavilion, is directed and produced by Don Hahn, producer of the animated and live-action “Beauty and the Beast” films, and invites Guests to participate in a twist on a tale as old as time. It also features narration from Angela Lansbury, who played Mrs. Potts in the original film. The new sing-along will run in rotation with “Impressions de France,” which will receive an upgrade to 4K projection.

And “Canada Far and Wide in Circle-Vision 360”, in the Canada pavilion, is an update to the previous “O Canada!” film with new scenes, a new musical score by Canadian composer Andrew Lockington and new narration by award-winning actors Catherine O’Hara and Eugene Levy.

2) We were given a “first look” inside Remy’s Ratatouille Adventure at Epcot!
Courtesy of Disney Travel News

Chef Remy is cooking up something special at Epcot®, and Walt Disney Imagineering is hard at work developing a new attraction for the park’s France pavilion, Remy’s Ratatouille Adventure, planned to open in summer 2020. Based on Disney and Pixar’s hit film, “Ratatouille,” this family-friendly attraction will invite you to shrink down to the scale of a rat for a culinary adventure with Chef Remy. You will race across Gusteau’s kitchen floor aboard special trackless ride vehicles, which you can see in the image at the top of this post.

Remy’s Ratatouille Adventure is one of several new experiences coming to Epcot as part of the park’s historic transformation already underway.

3) New Details were revealed on restaurants coming to Epcot and Disney’s Hollywood Studios:

Regal Eagle Smokehouse: Craft Drafts & Barbecue

Courtesy of Disney Travel News

The new fast-casual restaurant, opening this winter at The American Adventure in Epcot, will serve classic barbecue and home-style craft brews. When Guests step into the pavilion, they’ll be greeted by the enticing aromas of barbecue coming from a large smoker located in the center of the outdoor bar and seating area. Regal Eagle Smokehouse: Craft Drafts & Barbecue will celebrate American backyard barbecue with flavors from different regions around the United States.

Space 220 Restaurant

Courtesy of Disney Travel News

Space 220 is a new table-service restaurant debuting this winter at Epcot next to Mission: SPACE. Imagine entering a restaurant and stepping into a special space elevator that will take you 220 miles above the earth’s surface, offering incredible celestial views! Doesn’t this sound amazing? You’ll feel as if you’re traveling straight up into space to dock next to the Centauri Space Station suspended just beyond the orbit of Mission: SPACE. We can’t wait for the journey!

Roundup Rodeo BBQ Restaurant

Courtesy of Disney Travel News

Coming in 2020 to Toy Story Land at Disney’s Hollywood Studios is a new table-service restaurant that invites you to a rootin’, tootin’ rodeo right in Andy’s back yard! Here, you’ll be immersed with all your favorite toy pals in the western atmosphere of Woody’s Roundup providing a fun, family-friendly dining experience that could only be had in Toy Story Land. A new artist concept image (see above) emphasizes the theme of the new dining locale constructed from Andy’s favorite larger-than-life play sets and games.

4) JUST ANNOUNCED: Star Wars: Galactic Starcruiser to Debut in 2021 at Walt Disney World Resort
Courtesy of Disney Travel News

Star Wars: Galactic Starcruiser will begin transporting Guests from Walt Disney World® Resort in Florida to a galaxy far, far away beginning in 2021. This is a new type of immersive vacation that only Disney could create – a two-night, cruise-style itinerary where you become the hero of your own adventure in an experience that surrounds you 24/7 in Star Wars storytelling.

In a new artist concept rendering just released (above), you get a first look at what you’ll see when you arrive for your Star Wars: Galactic Starcruiser vacation. The Galactic Starcruiser Terminal is where you’ll begin your Star Wars experience!

Courtesy of Disney Travel News

Whether you show up via personal vehicle, Disney transportation or by landspeeder, curb-side check-in prepares you to leave Earth behind, jump to lightspeed and begin your Star Wars story. From the Starcruiser Terminal, Guests will enter an exclusive launch pod transport ship (above) for travel up to the Halcyon, the starcruiser in a galaxy far, far away. Through the pod’s viewports, it looks as though you’re traveling through space to approach the massive ship that is much too large to land on any planet.

A “spaceport of call” to Black Spire Outpost is included in the itinerary, where special passenger transports take you to the planet Batuu (also known as the destination for Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge at Disney’s Hollywood Studios®). You’ll remain fully in-story as you step aboard the transport ships designed specifically for this new immersive experience, which take you from Star Wars: Galactic Starcruiser to Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge and back.  For Star Wars fans, this promises to be an amazing experience like no other and we’ll be reporting on all the future details as they are announced.

5) The groundbreaking new Disney attraction Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance is officially open at Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge at Disney’s Hollywood Studios® – and we’re excited to say Guests are loving it! See for yourself:

Stay tuned to our blog for updates and information to come or to book your next vacation to experience a Disney Destination and see what all the hype is about! Our services are free for our clients but our experience and expertise are priceless! www.vacationswithcharacter.com

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