Quantcast Disappointing Disney Vacation -- Day One
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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jan 2001
    Pittsburgh, PA
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    Default Disappointing Disney Vacation -- Day One

    I'm an addict. A Disney World addict. I love the place. When I saw my Annual Pass had been unexpectedly extended until 1/1/2021 and airline prices were $99, I booked this trip for my son and me. I just wanted to spend time with him -- FOCUS on him! Everything would be different on this trip than previous ones.

    Usually, on a Disney trip, we go to the Magic Kingdom on Day One and I book a breakfast before the park opens so we can get some pictures with light crowds and do some early-morning shopping. This trip, I changed much of our "usuals." For one, absolutely no morning ADRs. (To be honest, I'm not sure if any are even being offered anyway.) Instead, I let me son sleep in a bit instead of the crack-of-dawn wake-up. We decided to have our breakfast at the Caribbean Beach Courtyard at the Centertown Market. Staying at Trinidad is both a blessing and a curse. You're on your own private oasis. Our room's view was outstanding. We looked right over the lake and could see the Skyliner from our window. There's a nice lounge, "Spyglass Grill," close by, but it's closed due to COVID. The downside is the bus situation in Trinidad and I'll get into that in much detail on later Trip Reports.

    I love the long walk along the lake to Centertown. Neither of us are fans of mask wearing, but it's Disney's rule (Their House, Their Rules,) and we wear them the entire walk. The masks mute our conversation though, and that's what I want most during this trip. Unaware of the new dining protocols, I walk up to place an order. Mistake. I am ushered away and it is explained I need to order on the mobile app and wait (socially distanced) until my app let's me know my order is ready. I planned on using cash for purchases and the Magic Band or credit cards as little as possible, but I quickly realize that is not going to be the case.

    I get the Island Bounty and eat every last morsel. My son orders the Avocado Toast and it is amazing. He's a picky eater, but he eats his wholeheartedly. Here's something to consider: when you get your condiments, get ALL your condiments. We decide to eat outside and you go out an EXIT-ONLY door. But I forget salt, pepper, and syrup. I can't go back in those doors! I must walk around, re-enter the lobby, go through the Market to the condiment stand, then return to eat. Not an overly big deal, but I am on vacation!! Not house arrest.

    We catch our bus to the Magic Kingdom. It is mostly empty. I notice the music isn't playing themed music. Instead, she's playing teen pop music. I don't know why. On my last few trips, as the bus approaches the Magic Kingdom, the music would play the Mickey Mouse March, but that didn't happen today either. We exit and make our way to the park. So much work is being done to enhance the entrance and you can see when it is completed an IF we get back to normal, the entrance is going to be spectacular. For now, though, it's make-shift temperature tents, temporary walls, and temporary signs. Security is much more thorough than I remember. Metal detectors. I have a batter pack, so I need my bags searched.

    Once inside, I see my favorite park. It's much less crowded than I expected. The "Cadaver Dans" are singing at the Train Station and are amazing. There's a new paint palette on Cindy's castle and I can't decide if I like it or not. The grey is much darker and there's a pinkish hue where it used to be white. It still looks beautiful.

    My son wants to ride Splash Mountain first. Queues are clearly marked with a 6' space between groups. The line looks like it goes on forever, but it is only 30 minutes. It moves very fast. We board one of my favorite rides anywhere (only two groups in a boat at a time) and for a brief moment, I am truly in my happy place. During the ride, I notice the water canon isn't functioning during the drops and I wonder if it a COVID protocol. We exit and go to Big Thunder. The line crosses past Tom Sawyer Island, but is only 20 minutes. (This is something we need to get used to.) We ride that twice.

    As we are walking up Frontierland, I comment to my son how sad it is to see it so empty and a Cast Member overhears me and assures me it will get crowded later. She's right. We ride POTC (only two groups per boat,) Jungle Cruise (very bad joke delivery, but to be fair, the mask made it almost impossible to understand him,) Haunted Mansion (no stretching room scene,) and mobile order lunch with Sonny Eclipse. After lunch, we notice the park is significantly more crowded, but not anything I would normally expect. We ride many more rides, before eating dinner at the Liberty Tavern. This is my first time eating there and I love the atmosphere. I photograph plenty. My food is very heavy, but tasty just the same. Our reservations were at 5:15 and when we exit, it is a ghost town. The cast members are closing sections off already. The park closes at 6 PM. I'm trying to figure the logic here. I am assuming with staff cutbacks, they cannot stay open much longer. It can't be that COVID is more contagious after 6 PM, but honestly, rules change with COVID almost daily so who knows.

    We catch a bus ride back and have an early night. We want to order room service, but it isn't available. Oh, well. He will have to do homework then.

    It was a different experience than usual, but truthfully not that bad considering. There was no 3 PM parade, but I did notice about every hour or so, one parade float would come through. That made me sad actually. It seemed like something Kennywood Park would have.

    Ride queues were visually overwhelming, but actually the times were very manageable. If the park would have had normal hours, I feel we could have ridden many more rides. I didn't like that I couldn't walk and eat my Mickey Bars (I am on vacation.) You have to stop to eat snacks, but when you stop to eat, it's a chance to remove your mask. The heat was in the 90s and the masks elevate your body temperature. I had to put water on my son's neck back to keep his temperature in line or he'd overheat.

    If the trip had stayed like this, it would have been ok.
    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

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  4. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2004
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    It does sound like a good start. I have never understood the shortening of hours either. If you want people to spread out more, why make them cram into a store during shorter hours?
    I'll meet you at the Rainbow Bridge.

  5. #3
    Join Date
    Jul 2001
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    Despite all the changes due to Covid, you managed to have a very nice Magic Kingdom day.
    Linda aka: Faline
    INTERCOT Staff: Vacation Planning,Trip Reports and Disney Camping

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