Wow! Pinch me. I still cant believe that in about 45 days we will be heading to Disney World. It’s really one of my most favorite places. Its just going to be my daughter and I, which is going to be amazing! We both like to do the same things, at the same pace, eat the same foods, etc. We are perfect Disney partners!

So this first post will be about how we figured out if we could actually afford to go. It was not a planned vacation – we heard that Wishes was ending on May 11, so we had to get there before that day! We teased each other about going for a few days and then I decided to do some shopping to see exactly how much it was going to cost. Neither one of us could afford to take off too much time for work, so I figured 5 days would work. We will arrive on a Saturday and leave on the following Wednesday. So I started playing around on the Disney site, plugging in dates, trying different configurations of resorts and discounts.. Looks like late April / early May had the best prices.

So now, I started looking at flights. Yikes. The prices were pretty high. My comfort level pricewise was about $1000 each including room / flights / tickets. We were pushing about $1500 each at this point. Then an ad popped up in the sidebar that caught my attention. JetBlue Vacations – save hundreds by combining your flight & hotel. Heck, why not take a look. Wow, I was shocked at how much lower the prices were. Value Resort, plus round trip airfare from LAX – about $550 per person. The flights separately were close to $500 each when I was doing my pricing. This JetBlue Vacations flight to Orlando was a red-eye, leaving Friday night and arriving early Saturday morning. At first I thought that was a horrible idea, but the more I thought about it – we could sleep on the plane and then have the full day Saturday to play! Hmmm. food for thought.

So, lets look at this more seriously. Ok, $570 pp for non-stop red-eye flight/hotel (All Star Movies). Then I found Undercover Tourist had 5 day hoppers at the old price (the price just jumped as I was researching this trip). Those were about $400 each. Ok, looking good – we are under our budget. I bought trip insurance for another $100 total , and upgraded our seats on the red-eye to the ‘more space’ seats for $80. I think the added space, wider seats, more legroom, will make it more comfortable to sleep. I think it will be an $80 well spent! We are still in pretty good shape price-wise. The only thing now we have to pay for will be food and any extras. At this point I asked my daughter if she really wanted to go. She would have to pay her travel expenses – I couldnt afford to cover us both. She said she would do it! – I will pay for the food and extras once we get there 🙂

At this point I had the package that would fit our needs, at a really good price. Way cheaper than the Disney package. I called Disney the next day to get an apples to apples comparison and it was about $600 more total to go through them. That’s a pretty big chunk of change – so we bit the bullet and bought the JetBlue Vacations package. I did some research and no one had major complaints about JetBlue, in fact many people love to fly with them. They give you free snacks, drinks, Directv, and XM Radio. Supposedly the planes are clean and comfortable. I couldnt find too many issues about their vacation packages – other than cancellation fees, change fees, that sort of thing. But you get that with any vacation package. Airlines typically dont let you cancel and get your money back. But I did opt to buy the trip insurance – because I paid up front for the whole thing and if we have to cancel for some horrible reason, at least we’d be covered.

We have our package booked! We are going! Now to start planning dining reservations and thinking about Fast Pass+. I made these reservations about 5 days before our 60 day window for Fast Pass+ choices. This is so exciting!