2015 Mickey’s Trick Or Treat Party in Disneyland – Tickets On Sale July 29th

If you are going to be in Disneyland this fall, between the dates of September 25th and October 31st, you’ll want to consider purchasing tickets to Mickey’s Trick Or Treat Party.

Disneyland, Halloween

This, larger than life, Minnie Mouse Pumpkin looks down on visitors as they enter Disneyland Park at Halloween time.

This one-of-a-kind Halloween event is not to be missed.  On select dates, with your ticket to the Halloween party, you will be able to enter the park at 4:00pm and the park closes to the general public between 6:00pm and 7:00pm to begin the party.  Start times depend on the night and the end time is between 11:00pm and midnight, also depending on the night.

Mickey’s Trick-Or-Treat party is in addition to popular Halloween Time seasonal attractions such as, Haunted Mansion Holiday and Space Mountain Ghost Galaxy, famous Disney Villains, Mickey Mouse and his friends in Halloween costumes and the Dia de los Muertos celebration .  During the party you can enjoy special character meets and delectable treats that you won’t see during normal operating hours.

Disenyland, Halloween, Storm Troopers

One long lasting memory for my boys was meeting the storm troopers outside of the Star Tours Attraction.

One of my childrens’ favorite parts of the party is the trick-or-treat candy stations.  Each station is clearly marked on a special map and will have a glowing ghost or pumpkin so they are easily seen.  You can get in each line an unlimited number of times & they give out some awesome candy.  Not the cheap stuff here.

Disneyland, Halloween, Candy, Trick or treat

19 pounds of amazing Halloween Candy is what we scored at Mickey’s Trick or Treat Party!

You can see above my son with their loot that consisted of 19 pounds of delicious, mouth watering, cavity causing, Halloween candy.  A dentist nightmare I know, but the kids love it!

Select attractions are open and This year, Mickey’s Halloween Party will include “Paint the Night” parade, celebrating Disneyland’s 60th anniversary, and “Halloween Screams” fireworks. Mickey’s Costume Party cavalcade parade will not be featured.

If this sounds like a fun even that would be perfect for your family, be sure to purchase your tickets early, they do sell out.  The tickets must be paid for in full and will be mailed directly to you and are non-refundable.  You can find exact dates and purchase tickets for the 2015 Halloween party HERE

My name is Melissa and I am a travel agent.  I can help you book and plan your next trip to Disneyland at no additional cost to you.  Contact me or visit my website for a free, no obligation quote.  Melissa@PixieDustAdventures.com  www.PixieDustAdventures.com

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7 Non-tangible things to bring to Disney

I love this bog article. Down the Rabbit Hole has found the most necessary things that you will need to enjoy your next Disney vacation. – Melissa, PixieDustAdventures.com

Down the Rabbit Hole to Disney

1.  Patience

There will be long waits for rides, shows, and characters. Just have patience and wait your turn. Most attractions have little things to see while waiting in line like the wedding ring at The Haunted Mansion and hidden mickeys.  Instead of getting upset, keep your eyes open. You never know what you may find.

2.  Understanding

Your Disney Trip will not be perfect. Sometimes that ride you`ve been dying to go on closes. Don’t get upset. And do not go after the cast member. You must understand that this ride is being closed for your safety.

3.  Compassion

Disney is the happiest place on earth.  Don`t make it any less happy by being rude.  If you see someone who needs help go help them, open a door or pick up that a fallen Mickey cap!

4.  Humility

Be humble and sincere.  Don’t be in competition with anyone, don’t…

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Flying Southwest Vs. Frontier

For our family flying to our vacation destination is a large part of our vacation expense.  I am always looking for the best deal on airfare and the best airline for you may depend on what part of the country. r world, you are flying from.  The 2 major players, here in Denver, CO, are Southwest and Frontier.  Often one price may look better than another but they both have their hidden fees and challenges.

Today I am going to compare the 2 airlines.

Southwest-Vs-Frontier

Rewards Programs:

Southwest has the Rapid Rewards Program.  They reward you with points for your travel to use toward future flights.  Sign up online for free & print your Rapid Rewards card online; we like to laminate ours.  The number of points that you need for a particular flight will depend on the cost of the ticket.

One way to earn miles quickly is to apply for the Southwest Visa card.  There are different types of cards that give you varying bonus points for signing up.  The Rapid Rewards Premiere Business card will give you 50,000 bonus points when you spend $2,000. in the first 3 months & then you will get 6,000 points on your anniversary.  The Rapid Rewards Plus card will give you 25,000 bonus points when you spend $1,000 in the first 3 months & then you will get 3,000 points on your anniversary.  With the Rapid Rewards Program your points will expire if you do not use them or add to them every 24 months.  The credit card can be a good way to add to your point total when you are not traveling.  Here are details for the Southwest Visa

Frontier has the Early Returns Rewards Program.  Run much like the Southwest program, you can earn reward miles for flights depending on the cost of the ticket.  You can sign up for free online, but there is no way to print a card; be sure to record your login and account information.

Frontier also has a credit card that helps you earn points.  Frontier offers 2 different Master Cards. One with a $69 annual fee that offers 50,000 bonus miles when you spend $500. in the first 3 months.  The second card has no annual fee and offers 10,000 bonus miles after your first purchase.  Here are the details for the Frontier Master Card

Be sure to check how many points a ticket would take from your home airport to see which rewards program would benefit you the most.
On both Southwest and Frontier: each passenger must have their own rewards number, no matter their age.  The points / miles for travel will be added to each individual account.  This is why I like having the printable cards that Southwest offers; the cards make it much easier for me to keep track of reward accounts for every member in my family.

Assigned Seats:

Assigned seats is another area that both airlines differ

Southwest does not offer assigned seats.  If you want to fly near friends or family, you have a couple of choices.  You can try to check in exactly 24 hours before your flight & this will get you a higher priority boarding spot, Usually B class.  If you do not check in, in advance, you will most likely be in C Class boarding & will be one of the last to board the plane.  They do offer family boarding for people with small children, 6 and under.  This group will board the plane right after the A Class group.  If you are a frequent flyer, you will be in A Class for boarding; otherwise, you have the option of paying an additional $12.50 per ticket (one way) to be in the A Class boarding & be among the first to board the plane & have your choice of seats.

Frontier does offer assigned seats that you choose at the time you book your tickets.  Depending on where you want to sit on the flight & how far you are flying, you will pay a fee for each seat.  From Denver to Orlando the fee ranges between $9 and $40 per seat.  See the chart below:

Additional cost of individual seats on a Frontier flight from Denver to Orlando

Additional cost of individual seats on a Frontier flight from Denver to Orlando

Baggage Fees:

Southwest has NO baggage fees.  All of your bags fly completely free of charge.  Each person is allowed 2 checked bags & a carry on.  Of course each checked bag is limted to 50 pounds & there are other detailed size restrictions that you can read about HERE on Southwest’s baggage page.

Frontier charges for both checked bags as well as carry on bags.  Their fees range from $20 – $30 for your first checked bag and $30 – $35 for your second check bag.  Carry on bags range from $30 – $60 dollars.  The way to get the cheapest baggage fees is to pay in advance (at least 24 hours prior to your departure) at flyfrontier.com under “my trips”.  You can also pre-purchase checked bags at the time that you buy your plane tickets.  Details on Frontier’s baggage policy HERE

Frontier-Baggage

Cancellation / Change Fees:

This is a difficult topic to summarize, but I do know a little bit from my personal experience & will share that information with you.

Southwest does not charge any change fees.  If you decide to change your dates, tickets or anything else, you just log on to your account & change your ticket; you will have to pay any price increase or will be given a credit for any price decrease.  If you find a lower fare for your exact flight, you can log on & change your ticket to the lower fare.  Here’s the catch… if you purchased your ticket with points, you will be refunded the difference, in points, to your account.  If you purchased your ticket with cash or credit card, you will be given a credit, through Southwest, to use on a future flight within one year of the date that you booked the original flight.  I have taken advantage of this a couple of times, but many times my credit will expire before I can use it.

Here are details on Southwest’s Cancellation/refund policy
Here are details on Southwest’s ticket change policy

Frontier allows you to cancel your flights within 24 hours of booking with no fees.  So you can hold on to that flight & seats for 24 hours in order to take time to decide.  After the 24 hours is up, you may have to pay fees to cancel or change your flights with Frontier based on what type of ticket that you purchased.

Here are the details for Frontier’s cancellation / refund policy

Update 8/5/2015:  *New – Frontier now offering ‘The works’ Ticket add on:

The Works includes one carry-on bag (normally a $30 fee), one checked bag (a $25 charge), choice of any available seat — including exit row and stretch seating for no extra charge, full refundability of the ticket within 24 hours of departure, no change fees (typically $99) and priority boarding.
The Works tacks on $49-$69 each way for direct flights, and it will run $57 to $83 each way for connecting flights.

Customer Service:

Both airlines seem to have good customer service.  I have had negative experiences on a couple of other airlines, not mentioned in this article.  I have celled both airline call centers and have gotten a friendly, easy to understand, representative that is willing to help me in any way that they can.

When they have time, Southwest really treats my children well.  They have given them plastic wings and have even invited them to sit in the cockpit and play pilot on occasion.

Playing pilot on one of our Southwest flights

Playing pilot on one of our Southwest flights

I must thank both Southwest and Frontier for providing quality air service at a price that makes it possible for my family to visit our vacation destinations and I leave you with some links to learn more about both airlines or purchase airfare for your next vacation destination.

Southwest
Frontier
Southwest Facebook
Frontier Facebook

Be sure to watch their Facebook pages for special deals that they often run.  Although finding good airfare is another subject entirely, I will direct you to watch fares from your local airport at http://www.airfarewatchdog.com

I would love to hear from you in the comments below.  What airline is your favorite?  What do you like about them?  How do you find the best deals on airfare?

My name is Melissa, I am a travel agent.  Once you have found that perfect airfare, allow me to help you book & plan your vacation to your dream destination.  I specialize in family destinations such as Disney and Universal Parks.  I work for Main Street Adventures Travel Agency and can book any vacation to any destination.  Contact me for a free, no obligation quote:  Melissa@PixieDustAdventures.com  or visit my website:  www.PixieDustAdventures.com

Thank you for reading! – Melissa Mathies, Pixie Dust Adventures

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Trip Tip: Ship Water to your Disney Resort and Save Money

We all know how thirsty we can get in the theme parks while visiting Walt Disney World, especially during the hot summer months.  Even the Disney Dining Plan may not include enough credits to cover drinks for everyone.

The Disney Parks do allow you to bring in food and non-alcoholic beverages as long as they are not in glass containers.  Read here for Disney’s outside food & drink policy

If you are flying to Orlando & taking the Magic Express to the Disney Resorts, you may not have the opportunity to get a case of water when you get there.  My family likes to order a case of water & have it shipped to our resort.  For the next part of this article I am going to specifically refer to Staples because they offer free shipping on your water.  You’ll want to place your order about a week before your arrival.

Staples-Bottled-Water

Follow these steps to ship water to your Resort:

1. go to www.Staples.com

2. Log in or create a new account if you don’t already have one.  This is important in order to get free shipping.

3. search for “bottled water”

4. add a case/s of 24 bottles of Nestle 16.9 oz bottled water to your cart  $6.99

5. go to your cart, be sure you have the “ship to address” radial button checked and then click “begin checkout”

Staples-Bottled-Water2

6. address your package like this:
Your First and Last Name
c/o your resort
hold for guest arrival on: 00/00/0000
Resort Address
City, State, Zip

You can google the name of your resort + address to find your resort address. (example: Art of Animation Resort + address)

7. Follow the instructions at check out & complete your transaction

Viola!  Your case of water will be waiting for you at the Bell Desk/Luggage Services when you arrive.

Although you can get free ice water from any Disney food service location, my family tends to like the taste of the bottled water and so they stay better hydrated when we bring our own water.  Also consider the fact that bottled water in the parks can run $2.50 a bottle which can equal $10.00 for a family of 4.

Here are a few other places where you can order bottled water to have shipped to your Resort:

http://www.Amazon.com  – This could include free shipping if you are a prime member

http://www.Costco.com

http://www.Walmart.com

http://www.GardenGrocer.com

Thank you for taking the time to read my blog!  My name is Melissa and I am a travel agent.  You pay nothing additional when you book your trip through me & you get all of my planning assistance and advice from experience.  Visit my website or request a free quote for your next vacation.  Melissa@PixieDustAdventures.com
http://www.PixieDustAdventures.com 

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Our Top 5 Favorite Things about Fall Free Dining at Walt Disney World.

The opportunity to take advantage of FREE Dining at Walt Disney World for 2015 is almost over.  Be sure to book your vacation package, at select resorts during select dates this fall, before 7/10/2015 to eligible for this special offer.
view the promotion details and dates HERE

Special for my blog readers:
Get a FREE, Walt Disney World, autograph book for your family when you book a 4 night, 4 day, Walt Disney World vacation package this week through me:http://www.PixieDustAdventures.com
book between 7/6/15 – 7/10/15
Disney-World-Autograph-Book

Our favorite things about FREE dining at Walt Disney World:

Character Dining:
If you’ve always wanted to meet the character or princesses and you do not want to wait in line, a character meal may be perfect for you, but character dining can get expensive.  You can use your table service meal entitlements to pay for your character meal and if you have purchased Memory Maker with your package, you can get your Photopass pictures with the characters added to your Memory Maker account. Reservations are usually required and gratuities are not included with the table service meal credits.

Epcot Food & Wine Festival:
If you book free dining during the Epcot Food and Wine Festival, you can use your snack credits to sample food from around the world.  We like to use our snack credits for the more expensive samples & pay cash for sample that are only $2 -$3.

Epcot_Food_and_Wine_Festival_Sign

Quick Service Meals:
With quick service meals you can eat at a number of well themed, delicious restaurants at your convenience.  No reservations necessary.  You can now use your quick service meal credits to eat breakfast or lunch at the popular Be Our Guest Restaurant; however, this is currently the only restaurant that requires reservations for a quick service meal.  The Quick Service Dining Plan comes with a value resort package, but can be upgraded to the Disney Dining Plan for a fee.

When eating at quick service restaurants on the quick service dining plan, Disney will no longer track separate child & adult meals.  This means that if you have 2 adult s& 2 children you will be allowed to purchase 4 adult meals if you choose to.

If you do not use all of your quick service meal entitlements, or would rather snack than sit down to eat, you can now trade one quick service meal entitlement for 3 snacks at a single location.  For example, you can use a quick service meal for breakfast or grab a muffin, banana & a water if you are on the run.

Meeting Goofy at the Tusker House Restaurant in Animal Kingdom for lunch during Donald's Dining Safari.

Snacks:
Snacks are included in all of the Disney Dining Plans.  Your family will get one snack per person, per night of your stay.  You can use them at any time and if you have any snacks left at the end of your vacation be sure to stop at your resort gift shop to get goodies for your trip home.  We love to take Mickey rice crispy treats with us for our travels.

Refillable Drink Mugs:
Resort refillable drink mugs are included in all of the Disney Dining Plans.  One per person with each package.  You are able to refill these with your choice of beverages at your resort.  They are adorable and make great, free souvenirs from your trip.  We like to take our to our home movie theater with us for sharing a giant soda.  😉

Walt Disney World Resort Refillable Drink Mugs

If you’ve always wanted to go to Disney World, why not take advantage of their free dining promotion?
view the promotion details and dates HERE
Detailed descriptions of what is included in the dining plan packages HERE

If you the free dining does not work out for your family, don’t let that scare you away from visiting Disney World anytime soon.  There are great prices out there during non-peak times of travel and I am more than happy to get you a free, no obligation quote.  There are never any fees involved when booking through me.  Don’t be shy, contact me with any questions that you have. – Melissa Mathies, Melissa@PixieDustAdventures.com
Travel Agent with Main Street Adventures

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New Culinary Adventure Now Being Offered at Disney’s Contemporary Resort

Calling all foodies! The new Family Culinary Adventure at Walt Disney World® Resort allows you to go backstage, step into the kitchen at Disney’s Contemporary Resort and work alongside a Disney Chef.

Upon arrival in the kitchen, you will be broken into groups and assigned a portion of the meal, which you’ll prepare with the aid of a Chef.  Teams will regroup to introduce their menu item before sitting down to a group dinner. At the conclusion of the adventure, you will be presented with a cookbook signed by the Chefs and a white Chef’s hat.

This 3 ½ hour interactive experience is available twice a week and costs $175 per adult and $125 per child (ages 9-12), plus tax. Each experience is limited to 30 Guests. Beer and wine are included for Guests 21 years and over. Transportation to and from Disney’s Contemporary Resort is available for Disney Resort hotel Guests only.

A Disney PhotoPass photographer will be on hand to capture photos of the group during the experience. Photos are included in the Memory Maker product. If you have not purchased Memory Maker, they will be able to purchase the photos a la carte. Each Guest will receive a PhotoPass card with a 16-digit claim code, which will include all the photos taken of the entire group during the experience. Photos will be available to view on the Disney PhotoPass website within 24 hours of the event.

This is the first of 2 events that has been added to the offering from the Contemporary Resort.  The other event is the Escape to Walt’s Wilderness tour.  These are a perfect way to spend a non-park day on Disney property.

My name is Melissa and the food is one of our favorite parts of visiting Walt Disney World.  Contact me for a free, no obligation quote for your next trip to Disney World.  My booking and planning services are always FREE to you and I can help you add this culinary tour to your vacation package. *subject to availability

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Click here and visit my website today. Fill out the quote form for a free, no obligation quote.

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Special Offer for Disney Visa Cardholders at Walt Disney World’s Polynesian Resort

Have you been curious what the new Villas & Bungalows are like in Disney’s Polynesian Resosrt?  Now is the chance to get a special deal on one of them.

Disney Visa® Cardmembers can save 35% on Deluxe Studio-Standard View accommodations at Disney’s Polynesian Villas & Bungalows at Walt Disney World® Resort for stays most nights July 5-Oct. 3, 2015.

You can embrace the tranquil spirit of the South Pacific at an oasis of tropical palms, flickering Tiki torches and white-sand beaches at one of the original Walt Disney World Resort hotels – Disney’s Polynesian Village Resort.

Number of rooms allocated for this offer is limited. Length of stay requirements may apply. Savings based on the non-discounted price for the same room.Cannot be combined with any other discount or promotion. Advance reservations are required. Deposit must be made at time of booking with a Disney Visa Card or Disney Rewards® Redemption Card. 

My name is Melissa & I would love to help you plan your stay in Disney’s Polynesian Resort or any of their other resort properties.  There are great benefits to being a Disney Resort Guest.  Contact me or visit my website for a free, no obligation quote.  Melissa@PixieDustAdventures.com

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