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  1. #1

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    Vacation planning advice (much appreciated)

    EDIT- Ok, i just realized i did indeed post this in the wrong place. I'm extremely sorry for that. My lack of attention caused me not to see the sub forum RIGHT ABOVE... Nice fail for my first post. I'm sorry. >_<

    First of all, hello. I'm new here. I'm an avid Disney fan, having been one my entire life. I've been meaning to join here for a long long time, but only now have i really had a reason. I hope i'm posting this in the correct place. And that this sort of question is actually allowed.

    My family (mother and myself) are planning a trip to Disneyland California. We're only really used to booking trips to Disney World. I've never been to the original Disneyland and my mother has only been once when she was like 12 or so (and can't remember it very much, nor was she in a position to be planning vacations at the time lol). So we're kind off noobs in terms of how to approach Disneyland.

    I may have more questions later, but my first question is what are people's tips on buying tickets? I would generally believe that you probably shouldn't wait till you get to the gate, i'm currently viewing the tickets online and considering the prices. But i'm basically wondering if there are any sites you can go to to get special deals (no scams or anything of course). We'll almost certainly be staying off property and will likely go for two or three days (not sure yet). Is it best to buy the tickets on the official website, or go somewhere else to get good deals? 2 or 3 days park hoppers sound good so far. I'm looking at the promo offers here-
    Tickets & Packages | Tickets & Reservations | Disneyland Resort

    I'd appreciate the best advice you can give me, anything. But mostly any advice on how to approach tickets and get the best deals. I'll try to give any info i can as well if i didn't provide enough. We're thinking of going soon, like within this month or so. Again, still not sure about it. But any advice is appreciated. Thanks in advance.

    EDIT- I might as well ask this too. What are some suggestions for where to stay off property for as cheap as possible?
    Last edited by MerlinTheGoat; 02-09-2011 at 01:16 PM.

  2. #2

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    Re: Vacation planning advice (much appreciated)

    Hi Merlin, welcome to MiceChat No worries about posting in the wrong place - it happens. I fixed it for ya!

    To try to help your questions... Mousesavers has links to some good deals as well as information: MouseSavers.com - Discounts on Disneyland Tickets & Passes (They are legit - I've gone through them before)

    My favorite place off property to stay is the Howard Johnson. they re a MC partner and have Micechat rates. You just have to mention you are a MC member when you book.

    Also if you have the entertainment book, no matter what city, they have very good rates through that.

    they are a very short walk to DL.

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  3. #3

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    Re: Vacation planning advice (much appreciated)

    I just came back from Disneyland, and I purchased my tickets online from the official Disneyland website. I always do this when I plan a trip to Disneyland. The tickets come fairly quickly in less than a week's time.

    I stayed at the Howard Johnson, and I really enjoyed staying there. The room was very nice, and I did walk to the park most mornings. I also purchased an ART pass, so that I could take the bus back at night. It was very efficient, and it comes every 20 minutes.

    Howard Johnson offers discounts for AAA members, AARP, MiceChat, and sometims they have special online rates if you stay longer than 3 nights. Not sure what your budget is for hotel accomodations, but I felt that the rate that I paid was reasonable.


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  4. #4

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    Re: Vacation planning advice (much appreciated)

    Thanks for the prompt answers and words of welcome and understanding.

    I should have mentioned a general budget. We want to spend as little as possible, but of course not get complete crap. Rates i'm sure are bound to be high anywhere near Disneyland, on or off property. We want the least amount possible, though being safe and clean is also important to use. I guess for the sake of looking, we'd like to start at the least amount possible, then see what they look like.

    Is the specific Howard Johnson you guys are talking about this one- The Howard Johnson Plaza Hotel-Anaheim Resort? We do have AAA by the way. Though i should mention that in checking with many online hotels/motels, sometimes their normal rates are actually noticeably LOWER than the AAA rate (which is ridiculous and a bit illogical to me). I'll certainly remember the MiceChat discount though, i didn't know one existed. Thanks.

    On the complicated side of things, we may end up being stuck with at-the-gate prices. It's a rather long story, but we're currently looking for houses to buy and are going to try to take a trip to Disneyland in the meantime for a bit of a vacation. The issue is that it's going to be soon, like within a week or so (not sure exactly). We don't know exactly when it will be, but we need to go back to our old home state on a deadline before going to CA (personal matters). We may not be able to stick around long enough for the tickets to arrive. But then we may. At any rate, we're worried about ordering online in case we need to leave earlier and end up missing the tickets.

    It doesn't help that our local mail service is garbage (slow and inefficient). We've got a PO Box as well, which tends to be even longer. So i'm really unsure if there's any other way to deal with it besides just buying their inflated prices at the gates.

    Can something be arranged over the phone or something by talking directly to a Disneyland rep? Like the ability to order them there at the discounted rate and be able to pick them up at the gates of the park or something? Or being able to rush the tickets overnight or whatever. Any thoughts or advice on getting tickets quickly would be appreciated. I'll probably end up calling a rep personally and ask some questions, they'll probably be able to give me as much info as there is available.

    EDIT- Oh and what road is the Disneyland Main Gate on? I'm not familiar with anything about the surrounding areas.
    Last edited by MerlinTheGoat; 02-09-2011 at 07:48 PM.

  5. #5

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    Re: Vacation planning advice (much appreciated)

    If you plan on staying at the HoJo (as its known) I believe the MiceChat discount is 15%. If you want to check out prices online use the code LKMC Howard Johnson Plaza Hotel Also if you want to check out reviews and pictures of the property go to Reviews of Hotels, Flights and Vacation Rentals - TripAdvisor they rated #6 in the area.

    If you buy your tickets online through Disney you also get the option of printing out your tickets at home and just take those papers to the turnstile gate and they will exchange it for the actual hard ticket. Or you can also purchase them online and have them for will call.

    Check out the website hotels.com | Hotel Bookings & Reservations Hotel Offers & Discounts Cheap Hotels Rates Lowest Hotel Rates Guaranteed! or KAYAK - Cheap Flights, Hotels, Airline Tickets, Cheap Tickets, Cheap Travel Deals - Compare Hundreds of Travel Sites At Once to get some hotel discounts as well. If you don't mind driving over to the park then using Priceline to bid your room can save you quite a bit of money as well. I use it all the time.

  6. #6

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    Re: Vacation planning advice (much appreciated)

    Quote Originally Posted by MerlinTheGoat View Post
    Thanks for the prompt answers and words of welcome and understanding.

    I should have mentioned a general budget. We want to spend as little as possible, but of course not get complete crap. Rates i'm sure are bound to be high anywhere near Disneyland, on or off property. We want the least amount possible, though being safe and clean is also important to use. I guess for the sake of looking, we'd like to start at the least amount possible, then see what they look like.

    Is the specific Howard Johnson you guys are talking about this one- The Howard Johnson Plaza Hotel-Anaheim Resort? We do have AAA by the way. Though i should mention that in checking with many online hotels/motels, sometimes their normal rates are actually noticeably LOWER than the AAA rate (which is ridiculous and a bit illogical to me). I'll certainly remember the MiceChat discount though, i didn't know one existed. Thanks.

    On the complicated side of things, we may end up being stuck with at-the-gate prices. It's a rather long story, but we're currently looking for houses to buy and are going to try to take a trip to Disneyland in the meantime for a bit of a vacation. The issue is that it's going to be soon, like within a week or so (not sure exactly). We don't know exactly when it will be, but we need to go back to our old home state on a deadline before going to CA (personal matters). We may not be able to stick around long enough for the tickets to arrive. But then we may. At any rate, we're worried about ordering online in case we need to leave earlier and end up missing the tickets.

    It doesn't help that our local mail service is garbage (slow and inefficient). We've got a PO Box as well, which tends to be even longer. So i'm really unsure if there's any other way to deal with it besides just buying their inflated prices at the gates.

    Can something be arranged over the phone or something by talking directly to a Disneyland rep? Like the ability to order them there at the discounted rate and be able to pick them up at the gates of the park or something? Or being able to rush the tickets overnight or whatever. Any thoughts or advice on getting tickets quickly would be appreciated. I'll probably end up calling a rep personally and ask some questions, they'll probably be able to give me as much info as there is available.

    EDIT- Oh and what road is the Disneyland Main Gate on? I'm not familiar with anything about the surrounding areas.
    Yes the Disney website will allow pick up of your tickets at the ticket booth, I believe in the checkout process they ask for an approximate date of when you plan on picking up your tickets. I can't remember if their is a cut off date to be able to use express mail for tickets. Your local AAA office should sell 3 day park hopper tickets though and I would think you would be able to buy them and take them home with you that day, but I would call and find out.

  7. #7

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    Re: Vacation planning advice (much appreciated)

    About the part where you can buy online and pickup at the gate- what is required to redeem the tickets? I would assume it's some kind of printable receipt, but i don't even have access to a printer at the moment.

  8. #8

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    Re: Vacation planning advice (much appreciated)

    Quote Originally Posted by MerlinTheGoat View Post
    About the part where you can buy online and pickup at the gate- what is required to redeem the tickets? I would assume it's some kind of printable receipt, but i don't even have access to a printer at the moment.
    Its actually a receipt that has a barcode on it that they scan at the gate and you also show your ID. In the checkout process it explains to check to make sure your printer is working and that it is communicating with Disney's website. I believe it says in their fine print that if it didn't print out that they don't refund you. Not sure what else can be done if it doesn't print out. So if you don't have a printer or access to one I would go with the will call option.

  9. #9

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    Re: Vacation planning advice (much appreciated)

    Ok, and i feel somewhat uncomfortable with doing it with a printer anyways, given their general unreliability (and Disney's unwillingness to do anything if it just happens to decide not to work during that print). I could possibly do it at a library with a PC and printer or something, but again with the reliability thing, i have a bad history with getting printers to work properly (along with PC's which tend to love to freeze when you're trying to print important docs).

    Could you please elaborate how the "will call option" works? I'm not even sure what that means at all. Thanks in advance.

  10. #10

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    Re: Vacation planning advice (much appreciated)

    Delivery Information


    * Disney Gift Card and Southern California CityPass
    include Will Call and mail delivery options only.

    See delivery options:


    Disney eTicket $0.00
    Your Disneys eTickets will be delivered within minutes to the e-mail address provided at checkout. Print your tickets from your computer and take them straight to the Park main gate.

    If the test succeeds, you will see a sample ticket with Tinker Bell. If the test fails, please download Adobe Reader and try again.

    Will Call $5.00
    Available for immediate pickup at any Disneyland® Resort Main Entrance Ticket Booth window. For your protection, only the Guest whose name appears on the Order Confirmation may pick up this Will Call order.

    U.S. Standard Mail $5.00
    Delivered in 10 days or less. You should receive your order by 02/19/11. Available for orders shipped to a single address located in the contiguous United States.

    U.S. Express Mail $15.00
    Delivered in 8 days or less. You should receive your order by 02/17/11 - undeliverable to PO Box addresses.

    International Express Mail $25.00
    Delivered in 15 days or less. You should receive your order by 02/24/11 - undeliverable to PO Box addresses. Signature required upon delivery.

  11. #11

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    Re: Vacation planning advice (much appreciated)

    I have always had my ticket sent by U.S. mail, and it has never taken more than a week. They send the actual ticket that will be used at the turnstiles, so I am good to go when I arrive. No need to make a stop anywhere before I enter the parks.


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  12. #12

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    Re: Vacation planning advice (much appreciated)

    The DLR is contained within a VERY small rectangular block (compared to WDW standards) by Ball Rd to the north, Katella Ave to the south, Harbor Blvd to the east, and Disneyland Dr to the west. The main gate to Disneyland does not face a street. Depending on your hotel you walk to Disneyland from from either Disneyland Dr or Harbor Blvd. The main gate of Disneyland and the main gate of DCA face each other in the middle of this block. DCA takes up the southern portion of this block and DL takes up the northern portion.

    My suggestion is to stay at the HoJo on Harbor and walk to and from the park from there Also if you are renting a car better hotel deals can be found in neighboring cities.

    Also I would recommend no less than a 3 day hopper if you have never been there before.
    Last edited by DisneyIPresume; 02-10-2011 at 07:55 AM.

  13. #13

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    Re: Vacation planning advice (much appreciated)

    We have decided to hold off until summer to tackle Disneyland. We want to do some more stuff in the general west, and time constraints at the moment don't allow us to do much. Also, there are a few rides i wanted to try over there that are closed at the moment. Heck, maybe i'll get there when the new Little Mermaid ride opens too!

    We're old Disney World goers, so we're going to take a trip there instead for now since it's around our general area and we've got our annual passes. We know how to tackle that place and we always love to spend time there.

    I really do appreciate all the answers. You've helped us plan ahead for this year.

  14. #14

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    Re: Vacation planning advice (much appreciated)

    Everytime I have purchased tickets online with Disney and used the print at home function, its always been a pdf file they email to me, and I always print them at the hotel the day I arrive. I've never had any issues doing it this way.

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