When I took my trip to Disney World in December 2011 I decided to get an annual pass. The plan was to see if I could find some good deals on trips in 2012 and hop on a plane and go. The plan worked in some ways and not in others, but it was still a good year.
I never really found good deals, but I had some vacation time and took several shorter trips. Actually, one of my trips was not only not a “good deal” but included expensive hotels and plane tickets, but was a great experience.
My first trip was with my sister and her two kids. It was a fun trip, but the 4 of us in one Polynesian hotel room was a bit much for me at times. As usually happens with kids, the trip revolved around them, we went on lots of rides, and I loved the Polynesian.
The rest of the trips I took that year ended up being about experiences more then about rides.
On one trip I actually decided to ride the rides that no one talks about, the ones you can’t ride with other people because they want to go on the good rides. It wasn’t one of my better plans, but now I have a list of rides I never need to go on again.
Another trip was all about the Animal Kingdom Lodge and Fantasyland. While I did do some other things, having already been 3 times in less then a year, I didn’t feel the need to do much more then that. There’s no line for the new Little Mermaid ride, better ride it lots before the lines grow! I can ride Peter Pan, Space Mountain and shop another time!
Tour a resort, who has time for that? When you go 5 times in 12 months, you have time to tour an interesting resort (Art of Animation), you probably even have time to tour a boring one (as though they exist).
The biggest thing I got out of these 5 trips was that every one I had a slightly different goal, explore a resort, experience a new party or event, ride new rides. The goal was not to see as much as possible in as short a period of time as possible. With that, I got to spend time with the charming lesser known things, instead of on lines. I got to experience the whole of Walt Disney World.
After that year though, I did get a little bored. The average attractions that you might do because you don’t get to do them often, they lost there thrill. You run out of new experiences to have, or at least the list gets shorter. So yes, the thrill wore off a bit, but the ability to relax on a Disney vacation started to exist, and I really never thought that was possible.
A lot of people asked when I was going back, or commented that I wouldn’t be able to give it up. But I have no plans of going this year. While it would be easy to go back, the desire to explore something new is stronger. I’ll be back there, but it might not be until 2015, GASP! But I wouldn’t be opposed to doing it with an annual pass again.