"We always do the same thing!"


Will work for Dole Whips.
I guess my WDW trips are pretty canned at this point because on our last trip, I got a lot of complaints from my teen aged son that "we always do the same thing!"

This time, we're hitting Universal in the middle of our trip. That should make him happy. But, I'd still like to introduce some variety that maybe I've missed out on in the past. How do you other frequent-Disney-visitors mix it up?


New member
I feel like I always pick the places "I' want to eat and what "I" want to do... One day I'm going to let everyone take a day and choose everything they want to do. I'm not there yet...:RpS_lol:, but I don't have any complainers yet either.


don't ask me to spin in circles
We have rides we like to go on and places we always visit and then also try to add something new or at least something we haven't done in a few trips. Since we started switching off between DLR and WDW each year that really helps since the two coastal versions are the "same but different". Not to mention when we go out West we always add something different and that helps as well.

We did Universal a few years ago on one of our Disney trips and I expected my kids to love it so much they would want to add it to our Disney trips everytime. Although they did enjoy Universal very much they both concluded that they preferred Disney. I was amazed. They are thrill junkies so I thought the rides alone at Universal would sway them. Overall they really enjoyed the rides but they did not think Universal was better than Disney. Although that is probably not the norm where teenagers are concerned.

This year we did Aulani so actually this is our first year since 1997 that we haven't visited a Disney Theme Park and they were okay with that


I guess my WDW trips are pretty canned at this point because on our last trip, I got a lot of complaints from my teen aged son that "we always do the same thing!"

This time, we're hitting Universal in the middle of our trip. That should make him happy. But, I'd still like to introduce some variety that maybe I've missed out on in the past. How do you other frequent-Disney-visitors mix it up?
Kind of tough at the parks because, honestly, it's always the same things. In our case there are just several things we have no interest in so that limits things even more.
To "mix it up" at the parks after so many trips we try different things, like trying to get a certain number of rides on a particular one (lets get 5 rides on TSM or 5 on EE) or try ones we haven't done in a long time.
Also different times of day. Nighttime is very exciting and great to look at when in the parks. Also, we try to find new things we haven't done yet, a few every trip, outside of the parks.
One thing we definitely do is include our kids, DD11 and DS9 in all aspects of planning. When they were young we did the "surprise them with a trip" thing, but they have actually enjoyed being a part of it much more. I go running and my kids ride along with me on their bikes. For 30-45 minutes guess what they talk about? Disney! Everything from the hotels to pools to rides to shows to food, everything.
Another thing you might consider since he's a teen is letting him go to the park (not on the trip!) on his own or with friends or another sibling, but obviously that's a personal decision dependent on your comfort level with that degree of freedom for him.
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New member
We always try to do something different...Disney has so much to offer!! But if you aren't looking to spend anything outside your park tickets it can be tough. Depending on his age you could try one of the many tours Disney offers. There is also horseback riding at Fort Wilderness, sea raycers, water parks, mini golf. You could also mix things up a bit and let them choose how to tour the parks. What about doing a scavenger hunt through the parks?


Faith, Trust, and Pixie Dust!
Stay at a new to you resort? Eat at new to you restaurants? Take a tour? On our upcoming trip, I had the kids pick our restaurants but I did ask for one new to us place and they picked it. (Trail's End for lunch--menu looks interesting so we're looking forward to it!)

I plan on letting my 16 yo do some of his own touring at Studios (he rides the thrill rides and dd & I do not). Also, if there are days I want to stay in the park a bit longer, I'm OK with sending the kids back to the resort on their own if that is what they'd like to do. I can see this happening on our AK day because I like to linger and take a lot of photos there. They can head back, go to the pool, and then I'll meet up with them later. If there is something your teen would like to do, could he branch off a while and explore on his own?


expert on dietary needs and disney dining
Every single trip I make sure we've got some new things fit in somehow. This trip is 2 new resorts plus bringing another child. Last trip we tried some new restaurants. The trip before that we stayed at a new resort and tried a whole lot of new restaurants plus we tried a YES class. The trip before that we brought others with us. The trip before that we tried a split stay with the second resort being a new resort. The trip before that we tried sticking entirely with QS food and just made sure to do some new attractions. The trip before that I think was our first Christmas trip so there were all the decorations to check out. I know that in one of those trips we also did the Family Magic Tour but I think I'm starting to mix up my trips now. LOL Once our kids are both of an age to be able to do more tours will give some of them a try.

In addition to that, I make sure that we try to get to some little areas of the parks that we've never been to. This trip coming up I'm determined to see the France movie because we've never done that before. I was planning to try to get on the riverboat at MK this trip (another thing we haven't done yet) but I just found out last night that for the first time the kids actually want to fit characters into the plan so that'll be new this trip and will be enough to try to fit in without fitting in something else. At AK I want to see if I can fit in the Maharaja Jungle Trek since we haven't done that either but I think the kids want to go over to Rafiki so MJT may be out. In one of our cooler weather trips we'll have to get to Tom Sawyer's Island since we've never been.

There is SO much to do at WDW that it's impossible to have done it all. It's worth spending some time in the various filler locations. Fitting in a couple new ones each trip really does help keep the parks a bit fresher. They may not be popular parts of the parks but they really can result in some fun memories, not to mention pictures for the Where in WDW thread.


wishes he had a pink frolicing llama under his tag
This trip coming up I'm determined to see the France movie because we've never done that before.
:: faints ::

I agree about mixing things up a bit. We did several of the "same" trips until King's started feeling the same. We figured we "knew" what we wanted to do, and that didn't leave room for much variety. So in subsequent trips, we made an effort to have some new experiences. Our Entertainment-Only Around WS arrival day was memorable and opened our eyes to things we'd never noticed before. Greg had never been to HDDR (and I hadn't been since 1988), so we did that in May and had a great time. The Gardens of the World tour at Epcot (offered only during F & G, I think) was another revelation.

So unless you spend a month at the world at a time, there are always new things to augment the old favorites. But you still won't catch me dead at Chef Mickey's!


New member
We always try to do something "new". We stay somewhere different, we eat at different restaurants, we create "games" (ie how many times in a row can we ride ToT, etc), take a tour, do something outside of the parks (ie boat rentals, etc). This year our "new" is Universal for a day.


josh's date at akershus
DW and I are "mixing it up" a bit on our October trip by NOT TAKING THE KIDS! It will be glorious. To be fair, we've been to WDW a dozen time with the kids over the past two years, so it's not like we're depriving them. We're going to enjoy F&W as adults. Our touring plans will definitely be quite different and "mixed up".


he's right
We also try to do a few new things each trip, but even so, if you are touring smartly, you do more or less the same things in more or less the same order each time. You can mix them up, but that tends to lead to suboptimal touring plans for variety's sake.

Our ultimate solution: take a break and do other things. Maureen and the kids haven't been to WDW since summer 2010. Maureen's next visit will be October/November of 2012 for Food & Wine---a completely new experience for both of us. The kids do not currently have another visit planned. Since that summer '10 trip, they've done a 7-night DCL Western Caribbean and a week at Universal/Sea World without me. Together we've done a DCL Alaskan cruise, and another week at Universal/Sea World. Over the next year, we have planned a week at the Outer Banks in a couple weeks, President's Week '13 in Anaheim, Easter Week '13 in Washington DC, and a Summer '13 trip to Paris (one week of "standard sightseeing" plus maybe 2-3 days tacked on at Disneyland Paris.)

So, there are other "Disney" things in there (DCL, DLR, and DLP), but plenty of non-Disney things too. There's a chance the Anaheim trip will turin into a WDW trip, but probably not a significant chance. So, that means their next visit probably won't be until either February '14 or Summer '14, depending on how the calendars line up.

Their two "without me" vacations were both due to our winter breaks not lining up. I usually spend my winter break soloing at WDW. But, I'm not sure I'm going to do that again---sort of Been There Done That. I have a sabbatical in '12-'13, so we can travel together this winter. The '13-'14 school calendar isn't published yet, so we'll see what happens there. To be honest, the kids would probably rather go back to Universal/Sea World than WDW for an Orlando trip, and after seeing them for myself, I might agree with them...

DW and I are "mixing it up" a bit on our October trip by NOT TAKING THE KIDS!
This is a lot of fun. Maureen and I went on a long weekend over Memorial Day for Flower & Garden in '08. We spent two whole days in Epcot, and only got on *one* ride (Soarin') the whole time.


New member
I'm still in the "just thinking about it" planning stage of our next trip. But I really want to try going different times of year. Next trip will focus on MNSSHP and some of the evening stuff we never have time or energy for like Fantasmic.. and then ofcourse only a couple of RD's. All of our trips have always seemed different so far because we've always gone with different age groups. I always make time for at least one of the less popular shows/rides that we've never done, and I always include a special experience. Last trip it was the Pirate n Pals Firework Cruise and Pony rides at Ft. Wilderness. We had our 3 year old grandson with us and we did no thrill rides. We did all the things he would soon out grow and stopped at every playground and splash n play area we passed. He did love Star Tours and Splash Mountain though.


Staff member
Soarin' sucks, unless you like sitting on a chair with people's bare feet hanging in your face while you watch a lint-y (originally had dirty here but feel that's inappropriate) video, sway back and forth a little bit, and have someone spray a variety of Fabreeze scents in your face over the course of a few minutes.

You might want to follow in the good Dr. Noble's steps and consider a totally off-property visit. SeaWorld, Universal, Islands of Adventure, Busch Gardens, and the Water Parks are a lot of fun too and the "family time" is just as good.


Have you played miniature golf, eaten at the ESPN club, taken him to Rock n Roller Coaster, or stayed at Boardwalk Villas (overlooking the Boardwalk, if possible)? Those were some things my then teenaged boys liked.


waiting for a street car
I'm doing 3 nights of new entertainment my Dec trip. YeHaa Bob, MVMCP, and F!. Also going to spend time enjoying the entertainment on Main Street and streets of HS. A new restaurant as well, Beaches and Cream.


tests unsafe roller coasts in china
Okay.....I'm going to admit it but I feel the same way. There are times when I'm just like "we do this same thing all of the time" and although I love it......I'd really like to mix it up. Problem is that we bring people with us who have never been and I want to make sure that they get to experience those core experiences and that leaves little room for mixing it up. Well....this last trip we really did mix it up more since it was just DH and I. I think that we spent less times in the parks this past trip then we usually do and we had a couple of more days then we usually have. So.......I've decided that we are going to have a day on each of our trips to explore some "non-park" attractions. Spend some time in a pool, eat at a new restaurant, visit a new resort (DVC is nice for this because we can pool hop to most of the resorts), maybe even get to the mini-golf courses or a water park. I just know that we need to experience more of WDW then just the rides and shows in the parks!!!!


Will work for Dole Whips.
Thanks for all the advice. I think I've got a few things going for me:

1. We've been on a couple other vacations since our last visit to WDW.
2. We're (finally!) hitting Universal Studios. (Hard Rock Hotel, too. The teen boys should LOVE that.) I'm thinking of Blue Man Group. That should be memorable for all of us.
3. We're staying in a resort we haven't stayed at for for five years.
4. The oldest, who just turned sixteen, is likely being treated to a Segway tour.
5. The kids don't know (or at least don't act like they know) about the trip so they don't have to listen to me plan for six months. (My husband is especially happy about this one.)
6. I *think* I'll trust the two oldest to do quite a bit of touring on their own this time.

I'll see if I can work in any of the other suggestions.