Walt Disney World Announces Date That Skyliner Takes Flight

A new era in Disney transportation is right around the corner!

Today Walt Disney World announced that on September 29th, the Disney Skyliner gondolas will officially begin transporting guests around Walt Disney World Resort.

In the Disney fan community, this date is possibly the most anticipated, just short of when Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge was opening.  Now that I think about it, since SWGE opening was announced a few weeks ago, this probably was the currently most anticipated.

Disney Skyliner will connect Disney’s Hollywood Studios and Epcot to four of its resort hotels: Disney’s Art of Animation Resort, Disney’s Pop Century Resort, Disney’s Caribbean Beach Resort and the new Disney’s Riviera Resort which is scheduled to open in December 2019.

The gondolas will feature graphics based on Disney films, attractions and characters. Disney has previously featured a few of the character cabins on the Disney Parks Blog, including those with Mickey Mouse, Minnie Mouse, Pluto and Chip & Dale.

Some of the other Disney themes featured will include:

  • “Coco”
  • Goofy, Pete, Horace Horsecollar and Clarabelle Cow
  • “Finding Dory”
  • Haunted Mansion
  • “Monsters, Inc.”
  • Pirates of the Caribbean
  • “Ratatouille”

Walt Disney World to Welcome Dogs at Select Hotels

Soon Fido will be able to meet Mickey and the gang.

Beginning Oct. 15, guests will be allowed to bring dogs if they stay at select hotels at Walt Disney World. Travelers will be limited to two dogs per room, and dogs will be required to be leashed in public areas and have the proper vaccinations.

Guests who choose to bring their furry companions will pay a $50 fee per night at three of the hotels (Art of Animation Resort, Port Orleans Riverside Resort and the cabins at Ft. Wilderness Resort) and $75 nightly fee at the Yacht Club Resort. The fee will go towards extra cleaning for the rooms.

To make dogs’ stay more comfortable, Disney provide amenities for their four-legged guests, including a mat, bowls for food and water, an ID tag and puppy pads. Guests will also receive plastic disposable bags and maps of green spaces for dogs to walk around. The rooms will also come with a specific “Do Not Disturb” sign to alert hotel staff if a dog is in the room.

The move was likely driven by Disney’s competition with other Orlando-area resorts, said Melissa Halliburton, president and founder of pet-travel website BringFido.com. In particular, three on-site hotels at nearby Universal Studios which is pet-friendly. Halliburton said Orlando is in the top five most-searched destinations on her site.

“For years, families have struggled with the decision whether to bring their four-legged companions along on vacation to the Most Magical Place on Earth,” Halliburton said. Previously, visitors who wanted to stay on Walt Disney World property could bring dogs to the campgrounds at its Ft. Wilderness Resort. Service dogs are also allowed in the parks, and there are pet rest stations throughout.

The news was met with mixed reactions. Dog-lovers celebrated the change, while those with allergies and aversions to dogs were concerned about the implications.

Though Disney did not specify its plans, Halliburton said it’s likely the company will take precautions to ensure other guests are comfortable. “Most hotels set up a particular floor for pets, so people with allergies are never assigned a room on that floor and don’t deal with any residual dander,” she said.

Pet-friendly accommodations are a growing trend in the travel industry. Some 53% of travelers vacation with their pets, according to travel news site Skift, citing a TripAdvisor survey.

Millennials are driving this trend, Halliburton said. “They are choosing to have children later in life — but their dogs have taken that spot in their hearts, and they want to travel with them,” she said. For those looking to travel to Walt Disney World with their animals, Halliburton recommended they plan ahead to ensure they get a pet-friendly room and bring a copy of their vet’s records and a photo of their animal in case it gets sick or goes missing.

Disney Releases Room Only Discounts and Package Offers at Walt Disney World Resort Hotels

Along with the release of today’s Free Dining package, Disney has also released three more offers, including a room-only offer.

Room-Only offer

It’s the perfect time to stay in the middle of the magic! You can save up to 25%* on rooms at select Walt Disney World® Resort hotels for stays most nights Aug. 1-Oct. 7, 2017 when you book by Aug. 31, 2017.

With this offer, you can enjoy distinctive Disney Resort Guest benefits and amenities – including early access to Disney FastPass+ planning, Extra Magic Hours, complimentary Resort transportation, standard parking and entertaining amenities!

Plus, you can uncover a magical mix of new and unforgettable experiences when they add theme park admission, including Pandora – The World of Avatar at Disney’s Animal Kingdom® Theme Park.

Booking Window: April 24-Aug. 31, 2017

The following room types and Disney Resort hotels are excluded:

  • 3-bedroom villas
  • Disney’s Art of Animation Resort – The Little Mermaid Standard Rooms
  • Disney’s Polynesian Villas & Bungalows – Bungalows
  • Copper Creek Villas at Disney’s Wilderness Lodge
  • The Villas at Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort & Spa
  • Bay Lake Tower at Disney’s Contemporary Resort

*The 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. Additional per-adult charges may apply if more than two adults per room at Disney Value, Moderate and Deluxe Resorts. Cannot be combined with any other discount or promotion. Advance reservations required. Offer excludes 3-bedroom villas, Disney’s Art of Animation Resort – The Little Mermaid Standard Rooms and the Bungalows at Disney’s Polynesian Villas & Bungalows. 25% savings for select Disney Deluxe and Disney Deluxe Villa Resorts; lower savings may be available at other select Disney Resort hotels.
Travel Window: Aug. 1-Oct. 7, 2017

Enchanted Escape Package

You can enjoy a package that includes a 4-night stay in a standard room at a select Disney’s All-Star Resort and 4-day Magic Your Way base tickets for as low as $1,890.* Sample package price is valid for a family of 4 for stays most Sunday through Thursday nights from August 13 through October 5, 2017.

Late summer is a great time for you to sneak in a family vacation at Walt Disney World® Resort. Together, you can explore exciting experiences across all 4 theme parks—and still be among the first to visit Pandora – The World of Avatar, an all-new awe-inspiring land at Disney’s Animal Kingdom® theme park.

Book through August 31, 2017.

Are you planning a longer stay or have more people in your party? Check availability for packages that can accommodate other lengths of stay and party sizes.

Booking window: April 24, 2017 – August 31, 2017
(Sunday-Thursday nights)

Travel window: August 1 – October 7, 2017

*Price based on 2 adults, 1 junior (ages 10-17) and 1 child (ages 3-9). The number of packages available at this rate is limited. Savings based on the non-discounted price of the same package. Tickets are valid for one Theme Park per day and must be used within 14 days of first use. Cannot be combined with any other discount or promotion. Advance reservations required.

Kid-Size Enchanted Escape Package

You can explore a package that includes a 3-night stay in a standard room at a select Disney’s All-Star Resort and 2-day Magic Your Way base tickets for as low as $938*. Sample package price is valid for a family of 3 for stays most Sunday through Thursday nights from August 13 through October 5, 2017, when you book from now through August 31, 2017.

With this offer, you can uncover a treasure trove of fun together, including up-close encounters with Disney Junior pals, sing-along stage shows and more than 80 preschool-friendly attractions.

Are you planning a longer stay or have more people in their party? Check availability for packages that can accommodate other lengths of stay and party sizes.

Booking window: April 24, 2017 – August 31, 2017
(Sunday-Thursday nights)

Travel window: August 1 – October 7, 2017

*Price based on 2 adults and 1 child (ages 3-9). The number of packages available at this rate is limited. Savings based on the non-discounted price of the same package. Tickets are valid for one Theme Park per day and must be used within 14 days of first use. Cannot be combined with any other discount or promotion. Advance reservations required.

 

Disney’s Art of Animation Pools Closing Beginning Next Week for Refurbishment

pools-art-of-animation-cozy-cone

All three pools at Disney’s Art of Animation Resort will be closing for refurbishments beginning next week.

The main feature pool, The Big Blue pool will be closed from November 17-19, reopening on November 20th.

Flipping’ Fins pool will be closed November 20-21, reopening to guests on November 22nd.

Finally, the Cozy Cone pool will close on November 24-26, reopening to guests on November 27th.