Are you looking to plan a VIP experience at Disney World? Keep reading for details on how I planned the ultimate Disney experience for my entire family.
When my son turned two, we took the kids to Disney World. A lot of people may say that a child that age is too young to visit Disney. However, I’m a Florida girl and Disney lover and believe you are never too young to experience the magic of Disney. RJ’s first trip to the Magic Kingdom at age 2!
In fact, my son visited Epcot when he was only 9 months old. My husband and I took our employees on a company retreat to Orlando and of course I took my baby with me. He loved it!!! So I knew he would enjoy it at the age of two especially because he was obsessed with Mickey Mouse at the time. Our family meeting Mickey Mouse at ‘Ohana Restaurant celebrating my son’s second birthday. Fast forward into the future and we decided to plan another Disney trip for my daughter’s second birthday, because it’s a family tradition now lol.
So I set out to plan my typical Disney trip. However, my husband happens to watch an episode of Blackish in which the family went on a VIP Disney trip. First of all, I didn’t even know such a thing existed and I thought it was just for TV. Nope…after a quick Google search, Disney VIP tours are a thing. An expensive but very awesome thing. In that instance, our regular trip to Disney became a “once in a lifetime”, VIP experience that I will never forget.
So here’s how we did Disney VIP Style…
1. Book top notch accommodations
If you want to do Disney VIP style, you need to book first-rate accommodations for your stay. When booking our trip I had to decide if we were going to stay at a Disney resort or rent a luxury home. Of course, we love staying at Disney resorts because they are kid-friendly, provide easy access to the parks, and my kids love the themed rooms provided at certain resorts. However, as we started planning this trip we had more and more family members interested in joining us to celebrate my daughter’s birthday. So since we would be traveling with 16+ family members, we decided to book a luxury home with Encore Resort at Reunion. This turned out to be a great decision because this worked out perfectly for my large family. We booked a large home with a pool and it accommodated everyone comfortably. We were even able to have a pool party to kick off our vacation.
2. Utilize the My Disney Experience Account
This app was essential in planning our vacation. Before you start planning your Disney vacation, be sure to download the app because it makes the planning process super easy and convenient. For example, with your My Disney Experience Account you can do the following:
- Buy tickets
- Set up Fast Passes- (if you need them, I will discuss this later)
- Book dining reservations and other experiences
- Your Photo Pass will also be linked to your My Disney Experience account
- Order Magic Bands- you will get these if you’re staying at a Disney resort but they are also good to have for convenience
3. Book a VIP Tour
So to truly do Disney VIP style, booking a VIP tour is a must. Booking a Disney Private VIP tour allows you to have a personalized experience with a dedicated VIP tour guide, little to no wait time for rides (meaning unlimited Fastpasses), VIP viewing and/or seating for parades and shows. So no need to spend hours planning your park itinerary and deciding which Fastpasses to use! This was a game changer for me! I simply told our cast member what attractions and characters my family was interested in and they handled the rest. Our tour guide picked us up from our resort and we were able to visit 3 parks in 1 day!
Keep in mind, booking a private Disney tour is very expensive (current pricing is between $425-$625 per hour). Disney offers other tour options that are less expensive. An even more affordable option is book a tour guide from another company. During our vacation, we explored this option as well and decided to book with Stone VIP for two days of our trip.
We had a great experience with Stone VIP! If you are considering using an unofficial Disney tour company, be sure to do your research and choose a reputable company. For a side by side comparison of our Disney Private VIP tour experience vs. our Stone VIP experience, stay tuned for my upcoming post.
4. Experience Character Dining
I highly recommend character dining experiences to enhance your Disney vacation. They provide a great opportunity to enjoy a good meal while meeting your favorite Disney characters without the long lines at the park. This is a must for us every time we visit Disney. Our absolute favorite character dining experience is the Best Friends Breakfast featuring Lilo & Stitch at ‘Ohana Restaurant at the Polynesian Resort. Money Saving Tip: book a breakfast character meal as opposed to dinner to save some money.
5. book Character Experiences
Another way to experience Disney VIP style, is to book a fun character experience. For example, we booked the Princess Tiana’s Riverboat Party- Ice Cream Social & Viewing Party. We were able to enjoy an ice cream social with Princess Tiana and Prince Naveen as well as VIP viewing for the parade. This is another opportunity to meet characters and get autographs without the long lines.
6. enjoy a Fireworks Cruise
Did you know that you could book a breathtaking fireworks cruise at Disney? Yep and they are amazing! This was truly the highlight of the vacation for me! It felt magical viewing the fireworks show from our boat. The kids enjoyed every minute of it and still talk about it to this day! Our boat was decked out with snacks and a Happy Birthday banner for our princess!
7. wear Group T-shirts
Matching family shirts are a must for me anytime we visit Disney. So of course we had to have them for our VIP family vacation (and I made every single one of them)! I just love seeing all the families with their coordinating shirts! It’s a simple way to make your trip even more exciting. Another benefit is that is makes it easier to find your loved ones in a sea of thousands of people.
8. Order the Memory maker
My final tip for planning a VIP Disney vacation is to purchase the Disney Memory Maker. I initially was going to pass on the Memory Maker but I am so happy we decided to purchase it. It was convenient and freeing to not have to worry about remembering to pull out my phone or camera to snap a pic. More importantly, I enjoyed actually being in our our family photos because I am usually the one behind the camera taking the pictures. We simply visited the various Disney photographers around the park and handed them our Disney Photopass and after the trip I was able to download all our photos.
Please note, I was not compensated for this post. I am just sharing our experience and all opinions are my own.