1/7 Denise’s Corner: Park and Resort Updates, Earl of Sandwich Discount and Free Birthday Sandwich

Hi everyone!

I wrote a Denise’s Corner column this week where we welcomed Fairy Godmother Travel as our newest website partner. We are very excited to be working with Teresa and her agents!

Now that Christmas is over, we are getting back into the swing of things with two big updates!

Dumbo has been testing in the upcoming Storybook Circus area of Fantasyland and new Radiator Springs signage is being added at Disney’s Art of Animation Resort. I also have a detailed look at the Amity area of Universal Studios, which just closed – along with Jaws – for the new Harry Potter expansion.

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Dumbo Testing in Storybook Circus

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New Radiator Springs Sign at Disney’s Art of Animation Resort

I also plan to begin posting new resort photo walks weekly. My 2007 photo walks are now vintage!

I renewed my Premier Annual Pass at the end of 2011, and received the new benefits booklet for 2012. The booklet is actually only dated through May, instead of the full year. One of the best surprises in the small booklet is Pollo Campero/Fresh-A-Peel giving a 20% off discount to passholders. Earl of Sandwich is also listed at 10%, but I was told that they give 15% to AAA members (at one point a few years ago I asked about a AAA discount, and they only offered it to package guests at that time). If you log into the Walt Disney World website, you can find the current information!

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Earl of Sandwich Birthday Coupon

Jeff used his free birthday sandwich coupon this past week at Earl of Sandwich. If you are here in Orlando during your birthday month, sign up for the Earl of Sandwich E-Club!  We did learn one thing – if you have one birthday in the group and another discount (like an Annual Pass), separate the orders. The Earl of Sandwich can only give one discount per receipt.

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Earl of Sandwich Holiday Sandwich, Ends this Weekend!

Free WiFi has also been added to many resorts across Walt Disney World property. I don’t know many details, except that we’ve been able to use our Ipod Touch at Disney’s Caribbean Beach Resort, Disney’s Port Orleans Riverside and French Quarter Resorts, and Disney’s Polynesian Resort  in many of the common areas (but not at Disney’s Pop Century Resort). We also stopped by Pollo Campero a couple of days ago, and there is free WiFi there as well. We are hoping to finally get a data plan for our phones this year (we need to keep it reasonably priced), but it’s nice to have some options at Disney too.

One year ago, we were invited to sail on the Disney Dream Christening Cruise. If you are planning a Disney Cruise (and I highly recommend it), check out our photos and videos from that sailing (we have 28 videos in our YouTube playlist with over 100,000 views)!  I sailed twice on the Disney Magic (1998 and 2002) prior to last year, I can’t believe it took me so long to get back on a Disney Cruise. I was able to tour the Disney Magic and Disney Wonder four times when I was a travel agent, so it didn’t feel like it had been so long.

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Minnie Mouse on the Disney Dream

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Disney Dream

We are looking forward to a great weekend! It’s nice that the holiday rush is over, I always am pretty exhausted by the end of it. 🙂 We are looking forward to one last look at the Osborne Lights tonight, and a final flight on Dumbo at it’s current location before it closes on January 9th. Next week we’ll be attending a media event at Busch Gardens as they open a new Animal Care Center, animal expert Jack Hanna will be on hand for that.

One last note – if you are local (FL/GA), Publix has a great gasoline offer. If you purchase $25.00 worth of groceries (through Wednesday, January 11), you can buy a $50.00 gas card for $40.00. They do this every couple of months or so. With chicken breast prices at $1.99 per pound this week, picking up $25.00 worth of groceries is very easy! I now have a $50.00 Hess card (that I spent $40.00 for) and will buy one more before the offer ends. Jeff is picking two up as well, so that makes for a $40 gas savings (in addition to my grocery coupon savings).

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Hess Gift Card

Have a wonderful week!

Denise