Walt Disney World: I Wish I Knew How to Quit You

I’m an adult male and I’m addicted to the Disney Experience ™

Don’t nod in agreement, I’m not like you- I didn’t grow up with Disney. I never went to World or Land as a kid. I don’t have a photo album full of childhood photos I want to recreate with my own kids.

That being said, I begrudgingly conclude that Disney World is an unbeatable vacation experience, and each time we go, it makes us want to try somewhere else-  less and less.

Now you might be conjuring images of me with a gigantic smile, wearing a Mickey Ears hat, and being the biggest kid on the Dumbo ride, but no, my love of Disney World isn’t based upon what it gives me…but rather what it takes from me.

Disney World is like a drug, it can make all your vacation problems go away..but it’ll cost you.

Behind all the happy Facebook family photo uploads lies the truth: EVERY family vacation has its share of unavoidable headaches and Disney World is no different. Long lines, grumpy kids, grumpy parents- the usual, but this is where the Disney folks excel – they are overflowing with options and ideas to remove every stressful aspect of a family vacation, and for that I give them complete props…and a lot of our money every few years.

If you stay at a Disney Hotel, a Disney bus picks you up from the airport and takes you directly there. You are given a Disney Magicband/wristband, linked to your credit card so you never have to carry cash, a prepaid dining plan is available complete with a refillable travel mug, free busses pick you from your hotel taking you to the theme parks where an army of professional photographers eagerly take your picture, (using that filter that makes me look like I’m still in my 20s) and their Fast Pass feature allows you to skip the lines.

 


Yes, those things cost extra but as parents, that puts us in an admirable position- all we have to do is make sure we have both our kids …and everything else is taken care of.

The first time we went, I secretly rolled my eyes at the employee’s unflinching unbreakable cheery demeanor, but then we took a non-Disney trip and you immediately notice the difference. You notice it and miss it.

As if challenging Disney World, we returned last January…and brought our one-year-old daughter. Our son was five before we took him for the first time so this was uncharted water for us. Turns out every park has ‘Baby Station’ facilities. These quiet, air-conditioned pieces of heaven come stocked with private feeding rooms, immaculate change tables and walls of baby supplies.

The perpetual happiness continued to be contagious and we all ate it up.

Our 11-year-old son used some of his birthday money and bought his little sister a stuffed Olaf. She shrieked and hugged it and for the record I wasn’t wiping my eyes I was readjusting my Mickey ears.\

Damn you Disney World. I can’t find your flaws.

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