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Most of the nine of us

 Our first trip to Walt Disney World as a Family was in 2005. I wrote about it in an article I wrote for Growing Up Disney called The Best Thing I’ve Ever Seen at a Disney Park. Since then we have been down many times. One of our trips in 2007 was with my family, a group of nine; three kids and six adults. This past summer we went with friends and it was a group of seven; two teenagers, four adults and a baby. It is different travelling with others, but it is also different when you travel with larger groups. When you travel anywhere with a larger group there is always a worry about where to go, what to do and how to get there. When you are in Walt Disney World, it seems that these worries are lessened. Disney makes it easy to travel with a larger group. So, I offer for you today, The Unknown Magic of taking a large group to Disney.

Usually the first thing you have to worry about if you are travelling with a group of 4 or more is accommodations. Disney makes it easier on families of more than four. They have the Deluxe Villas, which are the Disney Vacation Club Villas, which come in different sizes, but with a two bedroom suite, you can comfortably have 5 adults staying in a room, without a roll-away bed, which you may get in some places. They also offer at the ALL-Star Music Resort a “family suite” that six can stay in. This is a wonderful thing, because the ALL-Star resort is one of their ‘value” resorts and the price is a little lower.

Next thing you may worry about when you are travelling with a larger group is where to eat. Going out with a family of three or four is nice, when you are on vacation, because this is the normal group size that most restaurants are expecting. Even a party of six isn’t usually a problem. When you get towards eight, it starts getting into pushing table together territory. This is always awkward. Where is everyone going to sit, who gets to sit next to the baby, why do we have to sit so far away from each other, it’s a pain. In Walt Disney World, it doesn’t seem to be a problem. And they never seem to have just pushed a table together for you. They always seem ready for a larger group and are happy to accommodate. Some of the best places for a large party are their

dinner shows. The Hoop-De Doo Revue and the Spirit of Aloha Luau are really set up for parties larger than four. They serve the food Family Style and the tables are larger tables (mainly to hold all the food!) The dinner shows are actually more fun and can be more of a Magical Experience when you have more people with you.

With a larger travelling party, getting around wherever you are is sometimes a challenge. I still recommend driving in Disney, but when we were down this past summer we made the busses and boats work. Even with seven of us, a stroller and the baby, we really didn’t have any problems on the Buses or the monorail. We kept the group together and were able to talk to one another. Once again it is because Disney makes group travel easy. With a larger group, if you do have a van or even two cars, getting around in Walt Disney World is even easier. Not having to wait for busses with a kid is always a plus, but if there are three of them, as we had a few years ago, then it is even better when you don’t have to wait. Disney also makes it easy for you to travel by car if you want to keep your group moving and together, by allowing you to park for free at the parks and resorts if you are staying on Disney Property.

The only problem you may have when travelling with a larger group is who gets to sit next to whom on the attractions. Buzz Lightyear’s Space Ranger Spin and Toy Story Midway Mania are two of the attractions where this could be a problem. The reason is that these are competitive, interactive rides. When we were down this past year, we actually had a great time on the Space Ranger Spin, because we used the extra Magic Hour and we were able to go through the ride six times, changing partners each time, so that everyone got a chance to play against each other. It was a very fun time. And once again, it was because of something that Disney does to make this able to happen. The extra Magic Hour helps groups to enjoy the parks, as you can move through the parks easier when there are less people in the Parks. Another way they make it easy to re-do an attraction is with FASTPASS (which I have talked about in “No Need to go Commando”) When you are able to re-do an attraction, this makes it easy to ride with someone else in your party also.

So, now you know, travelling with a large party in Disney is easy. The accommodations they offer for bigger families are great and eating with a group isn’t a problem either. Other worries you might have about taking a large group to Walt Disney World should be pushed aside also, as Disney takes care of everything from getting you where you want to go to making it easy for you to enjoy yourself with your family. So get the whole family together and go enjoy a Magical Experience in the Happiest Place on Earth, Walt Disney World.

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