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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
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    Default First visit in over 40 years - Help!

    Ok - while I don't consider myself an expert on WDW, I do at least put myself at the intermediate level. However, with DL, the last time I was there was sometime in the '70's as a kid. We have friends in the Long Beach area and we are looking at a visit in October, in a little less than a month. I've always wanted to see the Halloween transformation of the Haunted Mansion, and of course with Star Wars GE open, am thinking a one day visit to DL will be in order. Probably won't do both parks. So I'm looking for any help or advice I can get.

    Which day: We would go on a weekday. I assume it makes sense to avoid Columbus day as it is a holiday for many workers and I see they have longer hours, so my assumption is larger crowds. So, am I better of going on a day DL has early magic hours (we are not staying on property) or on a day that DCA has Oogie Boogie Bash? My thought process is, would DL be potentially more or less crowded when DCA has the ticketed event.

    Tickets: Any such thing as discounted DL tickets. Looks like we are in for 1 day tix, which would be $129. I'm used to doing a 6-8 day ticket package at WDW and seeing the ticket cost, per day, well below $100. So having a bit more sticker shock than usual.

    Fast Pass. Is this MaxPass worth it? Does every ticket in the party have to have it in order for them to get a fastpass by phone, or just one person in the party with all the tickets linked. I'm assuming each ticket has to pay the up charge. Otherwise, is it like the old legacy FP at MK?

    Is it possible to do justice to both parks in one day using the park hopper? It would be a $250 add on for my family, just wondering if it would be too hectic to try do everything in one day for both parks. Is it easy transport from one park to the next? How does it work?

    Any other tips/tricks/advice for Disney Land? (already downloaded the app)


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  3. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    San Francisco Bay Area
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    Not sure about timing/crowds, etc. It's been a few years since I've gone to Disneyland, but per the MaxPass, I absolutely think that it was worth it. You save yourself so many steps being able to get the fastpasses without needing to hike from one side of the park to the other to get a fastpass just to then walk back to the other side to go on your next ride.

    Yes, all of the members of your group need to get the MaxPass in order for you all to get the fastpasses on your phone. There is a way to link all the tickets but I don't remember what it is. I don't remember it being particularly confusing.

    Both parks in one day would be hard. I'd say just focus on DL in that one day and not worry about DCA, but if you could swing a second day do the park hopper. It's very easy to jump from one park to the other and Carsland is something worth seeing.

    Regarding tips - most, if not all, of the rides in Fantasyland do NOT have fastpasses so get there early and get those done first - Peter Pan especially backs up really quickly so I'd go there first, then jump over to Mr. Toad then you should be able to hit the rest of the rides over there with minimal to zero wait. I wouldn't bother with the Nemo Submarines, slow line, slow loading, not really worth the time. If you're okay using Single Rider use that on Indiana Jones rather than get a fastpass. The fastpass will only bypass the outside line and I don't feel it's really worth it. Lines for Haunted Mansion will be long with the overlay. They have fastpass for it (which they only have during the overlay).

    I believe they have set up mobile ordering with several of the restaurants in Disneyland so that might be something to look into if it's crowded - you'll need to have a credit card attached to your account. I'm not sure if they still offer it but they USED to have a dining plan. DON'T GET IT. It's more like a voucher system. You buy vouchers for X amount, which is what they're worth. If you get something that costs more than that you'll need to pay the difference, if you buy something that's less than the voucher you don't get any money back. Not sure if they even still offer these. As I said, it's been a while since I've gone.

    The quick service restaurants there are all pretty good. I personally prefer the Mexican restaurant over near Big Thunder and the Jolly Holiday restaurant on Main Street, but you really can find something good at all of them. (Again, at least the last time I've been there.) I wouldn't spend the time doing a sit down meal with your limited time.

    I am the rebel spy.

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  5. #3
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Silver Spring,MD
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    Yes, you can get discounted tickets for DL. AAA and some Disney discount ticket web sites have the tickets. Max pass you might not need depending of course on the crowds. Mobile ordering is available at most places. I think it would be best to just stay in one park for the day. If you do have the time, I agree with NewDVCowner-Carsland is great!
    First visit 1976
    Offsite 1982/1985/2000
    Disneyland July 1996
    AKL 2002/Sept 2011
    Paradise Pier-DL July 2005
    Contemporary Sept 2006/Nov 2014
    Port Orleans-Riverside Sept 2008/July 2014/Nov 2018
    Port Orleans-FQ-Nov 2012
    Paradise Pier-DLH DL 2013/2015/2017 and D-23 Expo

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  7. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2004
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    I love the Maxpass. It also includes all your photopass pictures, if that helps with some of the sticker shock. Yes, everyone has to have the maxpass to get the fastpasses that way.

    Unless you are theme park commandos, I would only do one park. I wouldn't pick a day that DL has morning magic hours.

    If you can get a reservation at Blue Bayou to eat, I would definitely do it. It is a restaurant inside Pirates of the Caribbean. Also, Pirates at Disneyland is way better than at WDW, so make sure you ride it.
    Fantasmic is open for everyone to watch, but there isn't any seating like at WDW.
    The Matterhorn is at DL which isn't at WDW. I think there's a couple of rides in Fantasyland that aren't in WDW either.

    The World of Color show at DCA is pretty awesome to watch. If you happen to decide to go for two days, I like the World of Color dining package at Wine Country Trattoria. Once again, there isn't any seating unless you do the World of Color dessert package. Carsland is pretty cool to go see. Tower of Terror has Guardian of the Galaxy themed at DCA.
    I'll meet you at the Rainbow Bridge.

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  9. #5
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
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    Follow up - just got back, did both parks, the Disney MaxPass was a must, would definitely use that again. Nothing like being in Carsland and booking Toy Story Mania.

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