In my last installment, I shared that we chose the England & France itinerary for our family trip. Our dates were July 19 - July 26, 2019. The countdown was on!
Next up, I needed to decide when we would actually fly to London Heathrow and depart from Charles De Gaulle in Paris. It may be tempting to just fly in the day your Adventure begins. After all, you're already spending a whole day potentially on travel. And your hotel reservation starts that day too. I strongly advise coming in the day before, however for a couple of reasons.
First, you're, most likely, going to be traveling several time zones. Adults and kids alike will get more out of your trip if you feel well-rested. We chose to fly a red eye direct. Once in London, we stayed up as much as possible (a few cat naps may have occurred) until a normal bedtime. The next day, we were all in pretty good shape.
Second, you don't want to miss out on the start of the Adventure. We had a check in time in the morning where we met our guides and asked questions, plus our Welcome Dinner that night. The Welcome Dinner really breaks the ice with your group and gives everyone a chance to get to know everyone else. Our Welcome Dinner also featured a fun activity for the kids. Don't miss it!!
Third, having an extra day gives you a chance to see a few things that aren't included in the Adventure. Some families actually book tickets for attractions ahead of time. We decided to just play it by ear and see how we felt. We ended up riding the London Tube to the Victoria & Albert Museum, exploring The Natural History Museum and shopping and having tea at Harrod's. It was a wonderful day!
Likewise at the end of your planned Adventure, you may choose to add on something. Our tour ended in Paris and we had the chance to add on a couple of days at Disneyland Paris. Several families took advantage of that opportunity. Our family decided to book two extra nights at the hotel and take the train for one day to Disneyland Paris. That gave us an extra day to just explore Paris on our own before flying back home.
You can include your air travel with your Adventures by Disney trip or you can book it on your own. Make sure you compare pricing because the ABD air department actually does a great job getting you the best value.
My best advice is to really take advantage of being in the city or country you Adventure in and decide what would be best for your family. Even though the Adventures contain a LOT of wonderful attractions, it's impossible to see and do it all. So, if you have the luxury to stay a day or two extra - do it!! Oh, and the best part? Our transfers to and from the airports were still included.
Mary Graham is a Vacation Specialist with Coasters & Castles Travel. She loves traveling with her family and friends and planning vacations for her clients. Email her: firstname.lastname@example.org to start your next adventure!