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Planning Your Disney World Vacation: Step One

Once you say the words: We are thinking of going to Disney World. Be prepared!! Your friends, your family members, your acquaintances will tell you their stories: the good, the bad and the ugly. You'll hear about every resort: it's the best! And, it's the worst! They will weigh in on the rides and can't miss attractions. And, of course, all the dining choices: you have to eat with Mickey, and you have to eat in the Castle and on and on. You may feel overwhelmed and paralyzed by fear, unable to start planning.

Take a deep breath. And, another one. It's not that complicated.

Over the next couple of weeks, I'll break it down for you. Here's Step One.

The ideal time to start your planning is a year in advance (though last-minute trips are possible, especially with the help of a good Travel Agent like Coasters & Castles Travel, our recommended agency).

What to do a year in advance? Make some key decisions:

1. Who is going? Just your immediate family, or does Grandma want to join in the fun? You will need to know how large your travel party is in order to plan anything else.

2. When will you travel? Are school schedules a factor? Vacation time from work that needs to be factored in? Consider weather too. Disney World in Florida can be extremely hot and humid in the summer. On the flip side, if your travel party wants to be able to swim, winter may not be a great time to visit. Disney hosts many special events throughout the year that may sway you as well. Flower & Garden Festival in the Spring, Food & Wine in the Fall, Mickey's Not So Scary Halloween Party and Mickey's Very Merry Christmas Party, to name a few.

Watch this space for Step Two (coming soon!)

Mary Graham is a Vacation Specialist with Coasters & Castles Travel. She lives in North Carolina and has visited Walt Disney World 15 times, with just her husband and with children. Her favorite character is Dumbo and her favorite ride is Seven Dwarfs Mine Train. Contact her for help planning your vacation at mgraham@coastersandcastlestravel.com.

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