Quantcast Three-part Trip Report - So Much to Discuss - Oct 4-12, 2020
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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    San Antonio, TX
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    Default Three-part Trip Report - So Much to Discuss - Oct 4-12, 2020

    Part 1 - The Resort:

    Resort – DVC: Animal Kingdom Lodge – Jambo House – 1 bedroom
    Party of two – Me and DH
    We think it’s important to understand all the variables for proper context as we report. So, here’s a few details:
    1) We drove to WDW from our home in San Antonio – I10 for a long time, and that introduced some problems for us that we’ll talk about later

    2) We are healthy 50-year-olds – no comorbidity issues or metabolic syndrome conditions that would increase our Covid risk

    3) We (I in particular) were not conditioned to wearing masks for long periods of time – I’ve been working from home and we haven’t gone out much beyond groceries and local restaurants.

    4) One of us has a host of food allergies/sensitivities that make eating at any restaurant difficult if not risky
    a. Disney typically accommodates this well…but there were some complications

    There are a lot of different opinions about MDX app. Like anything new, it takes some time to adjust and to learn or figure out the capabilities. We liked the check-in and skip the front desk option before Covid. We still have magic bands from prior trips that we re-used although it’s becoming clear, and I believe has been announced, that the bands will not be required with the additional features coming to MDX…such as unlocking your room with the app. So, upon arrival we gathered our luggage and stuff and went directly to our room.

    It’s noteworthy that bell services are available if you need it, but they aren’t out there as aggressively as before. They would rather not handle your luggage if they don’t have to. While we were there, they implemented a check-out procedure for the carts because people were taking them and leaving them in the hallways instead of returning them. That’s disappointing and frustrating. However, it also allowed bell services to clean the carts after each use.

    The room was noticeably cleaner than usual, not that we’ve ever encountered a dirty room. However, there was a cleaner “smell” and they are clearly being more diligent about cleaning right now. They can keep that up after Covid as far as I’m concerned. The extra pillow and blanket bag has a zip-tie like lock on it, so they know someone has opened it even if the items were put back in the bag.

    The resort was eerily quiet. There were people in rooms on our (top) floor nearby, but it appeared as though the lower floors in the Kudu Trail wing were empty the entire week. By contrast, when we walked over to Kidani village, it seemed uncomfortably busy / crowded. It’s a far smaller resort with a significantly smaller lobby, but the two resorts felt really unbalanced in terms of occupancy.

    None of the restaurants or lounges in Jambo House were open, and neither was the gift/sundry shop. But Sanaa and the gift shop at Kidani were open to support both resorts. This felt counterintuitive since Jambo has far more room in their lobby area and the restaurants are larger. I understand Boma, a buffet, can’t open in its current form. It felt like the crowds between the two resorts could have supported a restaurant in each and both gift shops much more comfortably for social distancing.

    Both pools were open, and it wasn’t unusual to see guests walking to one or the other from their home resort. We went to the pool one day, and the occupancy was low, people kept their distance. Kids were a little less concerned about personal space, but that’s to be expected and mostly they figured it out. You could take your mask off while you were in the pool but had to put it on whenever you were out and walking around. Normal protocol.

    We used mobile ordering for the first time with Sanaa for carry-out. This was also our first difficulty with the food allergies. Let me first say that one of the food allergies is tomato – not typical, and certainly not accommodated via a standard issue food allergy menu – gluten free, shell-fish, peanuts, etc. If you think through the myriad of sauces, marinades, broths, condiments, dips, garnish, etc. that include tomato you can see why we normally have to ask questions of a chef. We avoid the obvious, Italian food for example, but even when you think a piece of baked chicken is safe, it’s often not. You have no ability to perform that pre-check with mobile ordering. I think there may be a way to alert them to those more common allergies mentioned above, but I never found it and it wouldn’t have helped us anyway. This comes up again in Trip Report Parts 2 and 3 as well.

    So, for this food order we went with the safest possible assumption which was a New York Strip and potatoes with green beans. Based on the description, it looked safe and as it turns out it was. But, it was a risk. The other meal was one of Sanaa’s traditional dishes, African inspired Biryani with Chicken, and we had the Naan bread service – all fabulous! Since we brought our Roku stick with us, we had a lovely meal while watching Hamilton (again) on Disney+. DH wanted me to mention the Magic of watching NFL Sunday Ticket at your Disney resort as well LOL. ESPN Club was not open.

    Since we drove, we brought our yoga mats and hand weights with us. Again, with our Roku we were able to stream our Les Mills classes and do our normal workouts in room. The fitness center was open at Jambo house, but we were more comfortable with our in-room option.

    I think that about covers the Resort. Next Trip Reports will be Disney Springs and EPCOT.
    First Trip - January 2003

    Kidani Village - AKL
    Bay Lake Tower
    Riviera Resort

    VMK - QueenThump & BrerFan

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  3. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2004
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    I am excited to read a new trip report.
    I'll meet you at the Rainbow Bridge.

  4. #3
    Join Date
    Dec 2000
    Western MA
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    Excited for your trip report. We'll be arriving at Jambo the 18th for a week.

  5. #4
    Join Date
    Jul 2001
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    Thanks for reporting. I was thinking about staying a couple/few nights at Kidani Village so this information is helpful.
    Linda aka: Faline
    INTERCOT Staff: Vacation Planning,Trip Reports and Disney Camping

  6. #5
    Join Date
    Jan 2001
    Pittsburgh, PA
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    I'm intrigued and can't wait to here more from your trip.
    WDW - 99 Off Site
    WDW - 00 C.Springs, Wilderness
    WDW - 01 POFQ, Boardwalk
    WDW - 02 C.Beach, POFQ, AK Lodge
    WDW - 04 Riverside
    WDW - 05 C.Springs
    WDW - 07 Riverside
    WDW - 11 C.Beach
    WDW - 12 POFQ
    WDW - 14 Riverside
    WDW - 15 POFQ
    WDW - 19 Wilderness
    WDW - 20 C.Beach

  7. #6
    Join Date
    Jun 2002
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    It's so nice to read a trip report. Having vacation withdrawals.

    *Disneyland Paris Hotel
    *Grand Floridian
    *Disneyland Hotel
    *Boardwalk Inn *Bay Lake Tower
    *Contemporary *Old Key West
    *Polynesian Resort *Animal Kingdom Lodge
    * Port Orleans French Quarter
    * Fort Wilderness
    *Art of Animation * Pop Century
    * All Star Movies, Music & Sports

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