Disney World Planning Tips – Try something new Take a Tour!

If you have experienced multiple Disney vacations, you know that, one the greatest things about it, is that there is always something new to see. And even if not “technically” new, there are so many things to see and do at Walt Disney World, that even those with many Disney World visits can’t say that they have “seen it all”.

One of the more interesting things to do at Walt Disney World, are the various tours that Disney offers. We have been fortunate to do the Keys to the Kingdom tour at the Magic Kingdom, and the Behind the Seeds tour at the Land Pavilion in Epcot in years past, and were thrilled to have the chance to take the Undiscovered Future World tour at Epcot, on our recent trip…and at this point I will say that we are hooked on doing Disney tours: they are a fascinating way to learn about “the World”!

If you have never had the opportunity to take any of the great tours at Walt Disney World, let me just say that the 3 that we have taken are well worth the cost. Having said that though, it is important to know that there IS a cost, and some of the tours are not cheap. And the cost for most is in addition to park admission (so be sure to ask when reserving to be prepared). But there is a huge variety in the Disney tours, as to subject, length, and cost, so there really is something for nearly everyone. And for those who travel to Disney regularly, taking a tour is a great way to learn some new things and make your visits even more fun!

So, if you want to take a tour on your next Disney World vacation, what do you need to know?

First, you will want to see what tours are available. The Disney World website offers a basic description of each, along with the cost, length, and age restrictions. (And a number of tours do have age restrictions on them: for those that go “behind stage”, you have to be old enough to be ok with what you will see….or potentially not see, if you get my drift…. 🙂 ) I also found Allears.net to be helpful for additional information, reviews, and details like the fact that some tours offer discounts to Disney Visa cardholders, Annual Passholders, DVC members and more. (Note that her prices are not current, however: for up-to-date pricing refer to the Disney World website, or ask when calling to reserve).

Some things to think about as you decide on a tour are the weather forecast (many are outside, and you might want to consider, for example, a forecast of temps in the 40s if you book a Segway Tour), time of day and day(s) of week offered, and again, age restrictions.

Once you know which one you want to do, call 1-407-WDW-TOUR to make your reservation. Note that you will be paying in advance, however there is typically a 48 hour advance notice for cancellations, in order to receive a full refund. Make note of what time you need to check in, and where: typically check-in will be 15 minutes or so before the tour starts. Inquire also about early admittance to the park, if your tour is at one of the parks, as many start before the park is officially open. Similar to early admittance for a character breakfast, you typically will enter at one designated turnstile, after giving the castmember your name.

Disney Quick Tip – Speaking of early admittance, be sure to allow plenty of time, if using Disney transportation, to get from your resort to the park.

What about the tour that we took? The Undiscovered Future World tour is offered Monday, Wednesday, and Friday at 9 a.m. We were asked to check in at Guest Relations (left of Spaceship Earth) by 8:45, so in order to make certain we were not late, we were at our bus stop at Saratoga Springs at 8.

Once we signed in, we were given headphones so that we could better hear our guide as we toured the park. I’m not a big headphones fan, but these were comfortable to wear, and really helpful, especially as we walked around outside. And when inside and not needed, we had the option to turn them off if we wished.

As to the Tour itself, well it was 4 hours long…and included lots of walking, as we visited nearly all of Future World. So comfortable shoes were definitely a must!

Whether you are looking for something new to do on your next Disney World visit, or simply just have a desire to learn all the Disney trivia you can, experiencing one of the many Walt Disney World tours is an experience that can’t be beat!

Nancy, her husband and college-age daughter live in the Baltimore MD area, but consider Walt Disney World their second “home”. She started her site, The Affordable Mouse, as a way to share ideas about how to plan affordable Disney vacations. Her favorite things at Disney World (in no particular order) are Soarin’, most of the food in World Showcase, Illuminations…and that special brand of Disney magic that you can’t find anywhere else.

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