Our family is considering our vacation to coincide with the fourth of July festivities. What can we expect in terms of pricing and lines?

I never plan my Disney vacation for July fourth for just the reasons you’re concerned with: prices and crowds. The feedback that I have received from renters and other rental property owners is discouraging. My own experience mirrors that. My family was vacationing with relatives who had only that date available for a Florida vacation. I’ve visited the parks dozens of times, and I’ll never visit on a summer holiday again.  It was one of the worst experiences related to heat and crowds I’ve ever had.
If you must travel during the summer, avoid the holidays at all costs. The July heat in Florida can be truly stifling making long lines even more frustrating than normal. Kids can be impatient even under the best conditions and the heat will only intensify that impatience. It can also try yours, as well.

Prices at theme parks and restaurants are fairly static during the summer, but because of the heavy air travel during those months air fares are high and generally don’t budge.

If summer is the only time you and your family can travel, try and keep your dates as flexible as possible. If at all possible, Talk to your kids teachers and consider taking your kids out of school for your trip (this works especially well with the younger, elementary school-aged kids, who don’t get as much homework and are less likely to miss out on something really important).

Where can I eat at Walt Disney World?

There are more than 100 places to eat at Disney World to suit any picky eater and their parents’ wallets. It’s just one more of the wonderful things about the Disney theme parks. Some restaurants are themed, like the 50s Prime Time Café, some serve foods of certain cultures, like the Lotus Blossom and San Angel Inn. And if all your little ones will eat are hot dogs and SpaghettiOs, well, then, you can get those, too. No kidding! [Read more…]

Where can I find Disney Photo Spots to take Digital Pictures?

You’ve probably been planning you’re trip to Disney World months – maybe even for a year now. You’ve researched everything and tailor-made your trip for you and you family: the hotel with theme rooms for the kids, when to hit the rides for the shortest lines, where and when to eat for the best and/or least expensive meals. With all of your planning, you’ll likely want to be taking home some things to remember your trip by. Sure, personalized Mickey Mouse ears are de rigueur, and souvenir place mats are kind of cool, but while you’ll see them again and again (perhaps on the floor or the bottom of a toy box), the best memories are likely to be the photos you snapped yourself.
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Where is Walt Disney World Located? Is Walt Disney World in Kissimmee, Florida?

Most people believe that Disney World theme parks are located in Orlando, Florida. Unfortunately, for many who book their hotels there hoping to be close by, they’ll find that the Disney theme parks are actually located in the town of Kissimmee, which lies about 20 miles southwest of Orlando. So when checking out lodging, the lower prices of Orlando might seem like a great deal, but the 20 miles of congested freeway traffic and the frustration and annoyance that goes with it might make it more trouble than it’s worth. [Read more…]

What is the Walt Disney World Fastpass? What is the Universal Studios Express Pass?

Disney’s Fastpass is an electronic ticketing system that allows guests to make a reservation to return to an attraction at a later time in the day. When you return with a Fastpass in hand, you’ll use the much shorter Fastpass line instead of the ride’s regular lines. To get a printed Fastpass ticket, you’ll run your park admission ticket through an electronic Kiosk that is near the entrance to the ride.

You can get a fresh Fastpass for a different attraction every two hours. The bad news is that there are only a specific limited number of Fastpasses printed for each attraction each day. When they’re gone, they’re gone. If you don’t get a Fastpass, you’re stuck standing in line with the other regular folks.
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Should I take my children out of school to visit Walt Disney World in Orlando Florida?

If your children are age 8 or younger, you’ll benefit greatly by taking your Orlando vacation while other kids are in school. In the lower grades, you’ll not usually have any objection from teachers when you say little Johnny and Jill will be missing school for a few days – and your kids can easily pick up the slack when they return to school. And, your kids will be forever grateful for missing school!

We have a child in middle school so I understand your problem. At higher school grade levels, it’s not easy to play hooky for a trip to Orlando, but it’s not entirely impossible, either. Ultimately, the parents and teachers know best whether or not this is a good idea. If your child is a good student, you can ask the teacher if he or she has any objection to your child’s absence. Often a teacher can adjust the student’s homework and make specific recommendations for dates when your child’s absence will have the least impact on class work.

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Where do I find Walt Disney World Collector’s Pins?

Most people, young and old, collect things. These collections can be anything, and often they are tailored to circumstance. For instance, if you vacation yearly at the beach you might gather sea shells or beach glass. If you own a particular antique automobile you might seek out miniatures of said car. Disney trips are no different. Sure, you’ll take pictures of your kids on rides or with characters, or gather up placemats from the restaurants where you dine. You can even save your ticket stubs. But there’s one type of item at Disney World that are truly collectable: they frequently come out in limited editions in all sorts of different mediums: enamels, flocked, sliders, light-up, epoxy, die cast, dangle, cloisonné, and the list goes. They’re Disney Pins and are coveted by collectors world wide and trading has become a pursuit unto itself.
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How much does Walt Disney World Cost?

Disney World is a great family vacation destination, but unlike renting a hotel room at the beach or simply going sightseeing in a city you’ve never been to before, you’re unlikely to encounter the major surcharge of a Disney vacation anywhere else: tickets.

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How can I get financing to buy my vacation rental home?

I am a newbie when it comes to vacation rentals. I have been reading
up on it and want to get going with it. This has been our dream for a
long while. My question begins with financing. We currently own a
home, and are building one to sell. So we have 2 large loans showing
on our credit. My local mortgage officer said that until the building
is complete and it sells, we probably won’t qualify for a second home
loan for a vacation rental. Then I asked about going for
an “investment loan” after finding a rental with a proven rental
history. He said mortgage company don’t consider vacation property
income because there is not a “lease”. This sounds a little fishy and
wanted to get some feedback from you all. How does anyone ever qualify
for an investment property loan and count the income to qualify? I
hope I am making sense.
Thanks so much.
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How can I avoid capital gains taxes when I sell my villa or short term vacation rental home?

You can sell your primary home every two years and pocket up to $500K in capital gains.
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