by Wishes Diva
My family has had a Disney World trip planned for this November since 499 days out. We were excited for our kids to be able to go and were finally able to book a trip when it would be more mild temperatures in Florida. When corona-virus hit it became a very uneasy decision to make as to whether or not we would keep our trip, or cancel. At this time we have decided to book everything as if we are still going and see what happens as we get closer!
That being said, we were able to log on to the new Park Pass system to get our park reservations set for our trip. After long waits and glitches on the website we were all set! After that happened I began to wonder whether or not we should make a back-up plan for another trip in case we end up canceling our November plans. Our kids will be 2 and 4 when we go. One of the big deal breakers for us is whether or not they will be able to meet their favorite characters when we go! Currently, Walt Disney World does not have any character meet and greets available and have not announced when they may bring them back. The other thing we are taking into consideration are the parades and fireworks! Our kids love those types of things, so when it comes time to decide those will all be factors we have to consider.
After much talk and deliberation and consulting our Travel Agent, we decided to go ahead and book a back-up trip. We were overall concerned that with the new Park Pass system there could be a chance that the parks would not be available in our time frame if we waiting too long to re-book. So we looked at our calendars and found some dates that would work. After consulting with the other members of our party that would be traveling with us, we picked dates in January for back-up.
Once that was set of course we ran in to some other issues. The resort that we were wanting to book (All-Star Music) was unavailable because at this time they have not announced a date for re-open. So we had to book at a similar resort with the hopes to eventually transfer our reservation to All Star Music. We ended up booking at Art of Animation instead. When all of that was said and done we actually ended up booking 2 back-up trips to ensure that our trip be as magical as possible. We became concerned that January may be too soon for the experiences that we wanted to be open again so we booked Trip Plan C for April! The same thing applied for that trip- we needed to book at a similar resort with the hopes to transfer. So again we ended up with Art of Animation. My travel agent sent me the reservation numbers for both trips and we linked it to our My Disney Experience account right away!
For both of these trips, we were required to put a $200 deposit down to hold the reservation. We were fortunate enough that our bank account allowed us to do that at this point. We checked with our Travel Agent about the cancellation policy as she informed us that we had up until 30 days before our check-in date to cancel the reservation without losing any money. We immediately marked that date for all 3 of ours trips in our calendars to keep track!
The next order of business was to book our Park Pass Reservations for the back-up trips. I was hopeful that this time around the system would be much easier to navigate! We got logged in and to the page just fine. We selected our party and immediately got an error message (see below). Through some digging we were able to figure out that my daughter, who will be 2 when we go, had been incorrectly assigned tickets for both packages. This meant that one of the adults that was going had no tickets assigned to them. We also discovered that my son’s Child Admission ticket had been incorrectly assigned to me! Enter my sigh of frustration.
Online there was no way to reassign our tickets because they were booked as a package. Another sigh. I sadly accepted the fact that I was going to have to call to get it fixed. After 2 days of trying to call I was ready to give up. Every time I call I got the message claiming “All circuits are busy, please try again later” which was not helpful at all! I decided on a whim to give their chat a try. This option popped up in the bottom corner of my browser as I was looking through the help FAQ’s on the website. Luckily someone answered my initial message and was helping me within 10 minutes! The chat took a bit of waiting on my part, but the Cast Member who helped me was lovely and fixed all of our issues without me having to go into a long explanation of what happened! She pulled up my account and immediately began reassigning the tickets. The entire Help Chat process took about 40 minutes from start to finish.
After our ticket assignments were fixed we were able to get our Park Pass reservations set for both back up trips no problem!
Overall I am glad that we have decided to book these back-up trips. It eases my mind knowing that whenever we decide to go, my kids will have a great trip and we will all be able to enjoy ourselves!
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