Park Hopping with Daffy Stardust part 5

Join me today as I roll out of my big lunch and hit a couple of the highlights of Walt Disney World’s big second gate, Epcot. The first is an iconic opening day attraction that is still one of the beloved vestiges of the ambitions of that version of the park, even though it’s been “updated” a few times over the years. The next is a much more recent, but also very popular attraction that got its first update back in 2016. If you were going to try to cover the core experiences of all four Walt Disney World parks in a single day, you just might choose these rides as a part of your day. I did.


Posted on January 12, 2018, in Daffy Does Disney, Epcot, theme parks, travel, Trip Report, Walt Disney World and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink. 9 Comments.

  1. I watched this with closed captioning on. I highly recommend it. I think it translated about 1% of the words correctly. My favorite part is that when you walk through a crowded area it mistakes the background noise for [Applause]. Looks like this video got a standing ovation!


    • I often get applause as I walk through the parks. Usually it’s right after some streetmosphere performance has ended.

      I didn’t actually approach this day in this way, but it did make me think about what would be included in an “ideal” visit to each of the parks that only lasted a few hours. Honestly, Spaceship Earth, Soarin’, Journey Into Imagination, and a really good meal seems about right for Epcot.


      • I bet the streetmosphere performers appreciate you working up the crowd for them. 😉

        What you are describing is basically Mindy’s perfect day at the parks. Nice meal and the two or three best rides. Do that once at each park and you’re done. Spread over the course of a full week with as few buses as possible.

        Sort of off topic, but have you see the pilot for paid FP? I’d have to seriously consider that if it’s offered in the future.

        I think you have one ride too many in your Epcot line-up. I will board Journey into Imagination if and only if someone else makes me.


        • I just like the song so much that it defeats the obvious shortcomings of the rest of the attraction for me.

          I haven’t taken a close look at it because I can’t imagine ever being at club level at a resort. Maybe if they expand the program to other guest populations in the future I would look into it.


        • You know you can listen to the song anytime you want online, right? 😉

          As I understand it, for $50 per person per day (on top of the outrageously overpriced room) gets you an additional 3 pre-scheduled FPs per day with almost no restrictions. The tiers don’t seem to apply. You can book at multiple parks on the same day. And you can book them 90 days in advance instead of 60. The one limitation is that you can’t pre-book the same attraction more than one time per day. So no riding Flight of Passage 6 times in one day. Other than that, sky’s the limit.

          Those club level rooms sure are pricey! Mindy wants to go on a Spring Break trip. She always wants to go somewhere for Spring Break but she never realizes it until January when it is really late in the game to plan for Spring Break. You know as well as I do that this is one of the busiest and most expensive times to go to Disney World. Just out of curiosity, I price checked a club level room at the AKL for that week. It was just over $5K not counting tickets, food or airfare.

          That’s steep, but it’s not out of reach if I feel like it is worth it. I figure I probably have 1 WDW trip left in me if that. If we go, I frankly don’t want any problems of any kind. So I would consider paying a premium for a truly worry free experience. I’ll have to see what the terms are after Star Wars Land opens.

          Of course the bigger issue this raises is this: Now that the door is open on paid FP, where does it end? Surely there are larger implications here than just this pilot. I would actually love it if Disney would adopt a large scale paid FP system similar to what its competitors offer, but I think I am in the minority on that.


        • The problem is that it raises the daily cost of just going to the parks in what looks like an unreasonable way. While I have quibbles about the current system I at least feel like it’s mostly fair. The idea that people can get more FPs and reserve them earlier than me just because they are wealthy doesn’t really sit well with me. Rides that used to be virtual walk-ons pretty consistently have already acquired 20 minute lines under the current system. Now imagine that a certain portion of park guests have twice as many FPs than you and got them before you were allowed to. This doesn’t sound to me like something that will make lines better for anyone but them. Remember how we talked about WDW selling more tickets to the Halloween party and now the attraction lines aren’t any better during the parties than during a regular day? This seems like the same thing. More money for Disney fewer benefits for the rank and file guest.


        • There is no disputing that this lessens the value of a regular ticket. It definitely does. Everything you said is 100% true. Locals are pissed obviously.

          If it stays to just the club level rooms, my guess is that the numbers will be so small that it won’t be noticeable. However, I doubt anyone expects Disney to stop at the club level rooms.

          My expectation is that Disney will roll this out to other room over time. Maybe the deal will be the same and maybe it changes. For example, maybe if you stay at a regular room in a deluxe resort you can get 4 FP’s instead of 6. Who knows how they will implement it? They have been researching this since the inception of FP+.

          The end goal is obviously more money for Disney. Fewer benefits for the rank and file guest has been the trajectory we have been following for about a decade now.


        • Yep. I’ve have really enjoyed being an annual passholder this year, but I very well may have to delay a future trip after April by 2 or three years. All of the updates and new attractions/features will be big motivators, of course, as will the 50th anniversary celebration which I’m sure will be interesting. Driving there will be a no-go that year though, because local highway construction has foolishly been delayed until right in the middle of that year. All of this is a “wait and see” at this point.

          If you guys decide to be in Orlando during the first week of April, be sure to look me up 🙂


        • True story: Last year about this time Mindy was having her “I need a vacation!” attack. We started talking about Universal and I compared prices in Spring Break vs. summer. It was much more economical and easier to plan around a summer date than it was Spring Break – especially given the somewhat late notice. I relayed all this information to Mindy and suggested a summer trip instead of Spring Break. She agreed, but as soon as the non-refundable tickets were purchased she started complaining about how much she would have preferred a Spring Break trip. She needs to get away from winter and she never gets to go on Spring Break.

          So I suggested, since we were buying multi-day Universal tickets and they weren’t much more money, that we should buy annual passes and make use of them again in April 2018. Mindy didn’t like that idea because it was expensive and locked her into two consecutive Universal trips. I got that. I left the door open to upgrade our tickets if we were having a magnificent time and changed our minds about going back. I decided not to bring it up because I didn’t want to be seen as pressuring her to commit to another Universal trip. When the vacation was over, I was a little glad we weren’t obligated to do it again in less than a year.

          Point being, we very well might have been in Orlando during the first week of April this year. But it was not to be. Ironically, Mindy now regrets not buying the annual passes. She would love to go back.

          With two dogs, I don’t know that we will take a vacation this year. Belle is still too much of a handful for anyone to watch her and I don’t like the idea of kenneling her. That was part of the reason I didn’t want to get any dogs last year. As usual, I got over-ruled on that one.

          Long term, I figure I will experience Star Wars on either coast. It may be DL because as we discussed the small size fits Mindy’s preference better than WDW. It is, as you say, wait and see at this point.

          Liked by 1 person

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