Monday, 28 July 2008


I've got to write this down before I forget!

Note to self: Book around 28th July 09. Look on,, and first.

Holiday Genie.

Imperial Swan Hotel & Suites

The Imperial Swan Hotel and Suites is located 1-block from International Drive, whether your stay is for business or pleasure, you are sure to enjoy your stay here. This is an excellent property suitable for families, couples and non drivers. The hotel also features a wealth of on-site facilities
Room Type:
Board Basis:
Room Only
Flight Information
Flight: DIRECT
Delta Air Lines Inc
London to Orlando
21 Oct 08
Orlando to London
04 Nov 08
Flight No: DL0059

Package Price
Price per Adult
£ 459
Price Per Child
£ 427
Number of Adults : 2 Number of Children : 2
Total For This Trip
£ 1772

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0800 0111 815


Your holiday: London to Orlando (and vicinity)
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Traveller and cost summary
1 Adult
2 Children
Flight taxes/fees, Hotel taxes

Flight summary

Tue 21-Oct-08
London (LGW)Depart 10:40 Terminal S
Charlotte (CLT)Arrive 14:25
3,994 mi(6,428 km)Duration: 8hr 45min
US Flight: 733
3Economy/Coach Class, Lunch, AIRBUS INDUSTRIE A330-300
Charlotte (CLT)Depart 16:30
Orlando (MCO)Arrive 18:08
462 mi(744 km)Duration: 1hr 38min
US Flight: 1709
3Economy/Coach Class, Boeing 757
Total distance: 4,456 mi (7,171 km)
Total duration: 10hr 23min (12hr 28min with connections)

Tue 4-Nov-08
Orlando (MCO)Depart 15:35
Charlotte (CLT)Arrive 17:15
462 mi(744 km)Duration: 1hr 40min
US Flight: 1178
3Economy/Coach Class, Airbus A321
Charlotte (CLT)Depart 20:15
London (LGW)Arrive 09:00
Flight arrives on Wed 5-Nov"
3,994 mi(6,428 km)Duration: 7hr 45min
US Flight: 732
3Economy/Coach Class, Dinner, AIRBUS INDUSTRIE A330-300
Total distance: 4,456 mi (7,171 km)
Total duration: 9hr 25min (12hr 25min with connections)

Hotel summary
Tue 21-Oct-2008 (14nights)
Howard Johnson Express Inn - Kissimmee Suites
4836 W Irlo Bronson Memorial HwyKissimmee, FL 34746USA
Check in: Tue 21-Oct-2008 Check out: Tue 4-Nov-2008
Hotel Class: More hotel info
Room description:
Two Doubles Non Smoking
Breakfast not included

And the other one came to £1295!!!!

The first one was for 2 adults and two children! That's amazing!

Obviously I can't go this year, but if this is the price today for this year, I'll be making sure I'm looking on the web around this time next year for the same date in October and with any luck will get prices like these! Who knows, the whole fuel saga might have died down by then. If not, these prices are major bargains, so even a few hundred more will be amazing!

I was starting to get a little disheartened, for about a day, about whether I could really afford it, but at these prices it's a dead cert!

I'm so excited now I've seen these. I've always heard that late bookings are a myth etc but I can be flexible with dates, and if I'm saving now, I can book very late being as I'll be paying the whole lot in one go.

I also went through the options of buying attraction tickets at the same time and got the same as above (experian), so flights, hotel, breakfast every morning, Disney 5 day premium which includes admission to Magic Kindgom, Animal Kingdom, Epcot and MGM (ok, ok Hollywood studios!), as well as all Disneys water parks, then the 3 park bonus ticket which includes admission to Universal studios, Universal Islands of adventure, City Walk and Wet n Wild. THEN, admission to Seaworld and Aquatica, AND a reservation for the Pirate Dinner Adventure, which looks fantastic and you need to book in advance to get in. All that for £2196!

We wouldn't need much more than that! Just extra spending money for shopping and food.

We also don't NEED all the tickets, this is just what I'll buy if I can afford it (£860 extra for all the tickets).

What I'm most likely to do is buy the tickets at the gate or hotel. It will work out cheaper for us, as we'll really only buy tickets to MK, MGM, Seaworld and Universal and maybe Animal Kingdom depending on transport. I don't know how much that costs individually, but I'd guess about £40 for an adult and £30 for children, so £100 per park, which makes £400 instead of the £800 (will still do the PDA at £60) which would make a total of £1796!!!!!

£1796 to go to Florida for Halloween! £1796 to stay in a lovely hotel in a sunny paradise. £1796 to have brilliant flights that will get us there in the afternoon, and won't have to leave too early. £1796 to see Mickey and his gang, the parades, the castle. £1796 to go on TOT again. To go on everything again! £1796 to see Shamu do his tricks and feed the dolphins. £1796 to plunge 120ft (I think) down a water slide. £1796 to have pirates fighting around us when we eat a fabulous dinner. £1796 just to be there!

I've never been more determined to save as much as possible so we can do all that and go shopping too! Who, I ask, could ever ask for anything more?

There's nowhere else I would rather be...

Saturday, 26 July 2008

Woo hoo!

I said before on my other blog that I won £50 this week on online gambling! Never done it before and won that! I'd guess most people win the first time they play so they're under the illusion that it's easy, but I won't be falling into that trap.

Anyway, it turns out I won more than that! I checked my bank balance this morning and it was £90 more than it was yesterday! Checked online and sure enough it's all come from the gambling site.

So, being as I wouldn't normally have that money, therefore wouldn't really miss it, I've topped up my fairfx card again! The rate wasn't as good as the first time I topped up ($2 to the £) but still, by far, the best around at $1.9650 to the £! So that got me around $175 which brings my total up to over $255!

Not bad after only recieving the card last week. I also got my pin in the post this week so I can now check my balance without needing t'internet or wasting credit on my phone.

I'm going to really enjoy watching the $$$ up more each week. The beauty of the exchange rate is that even if I only top it up with £15, I'll have nearly $30 dollars added to the card. Makes it even better seeing your money double just like that! lol

If I want to go around the 21st of October 2009, I'd guess I'll need to book by around the end of August, lets say the 26h. Which means I have around 56 weeks to save up before then.

If I could manage to save £30 a week (which should be manageable if I don't buy any more take-aways, books, and random crap I always seem to come out of the supermarket with!) I'll end up with £1680, which would be about $3360! Add on the $255 I'll already have will make $3615.

That should be plenty enough for the holiday and some spending money, and the 8 weeks after I can book I can save more for spending money too! 8 weeks at £30 is another £240/$480 spending money. So totalling about $4095 all together.

Plus, that doesn't take into account any change I have in my, pretty full, change jar which will be transferred onto the card. Then Christmas and my birthday where I'll ask for money instead of presents and transfer it. Then anything I sell on ebay...etc

I think we'll be fine! Only time will tell. I'm determined to do something amazing for my kids for once. They don't get much, they deserve the magic of Florida. That thought is always in the front of my mind, I don't see how I could possibly let it slip through my fingers.

My car will be on ebay soon too! It's a load of crap, but it should sell for spares and repairs. Guess where the money from at will be going...

Till next time...

Friday, 25 July 2008

A dream is a wish your heart makes...

Hi everyone! Not sure where to start!

This blog will be all about Florida and Disney, and my planning to get us there!

I originally planned to go in 5 years time as I can't afford yearly holidays, so wanted to give them THE holiday of a lifetime. Swimming with dolphins, going to every single theme park, staying in a Disney hotel, hiring a lovely car, going for 5 weeks, and having tonnes of spending money. I wanted to be able to do everything, in fear of never having the chance again, and not having to worry about money at all when we're out there.
I have a 126 page planner filled with everything I plan to do and god knows how many travel guides!

THEN.....I found the DIS! ( )

Having looked around I realised, although I couldn't do everything I wanted to do, I could afford to go for a couple of weeks every couple of years, staying in a Disney hotel and going to a fair few theme parks, and still have an amazing holiday! You never know, maybe even once a year if I'm lucky!

To be honest, I would much rather go every couple of years and only do a few parks each time than have one holiday (which is estimated to cost around £10,000!!!!!) in 5 years time. We could still do it all, but spread it over a lifetime!

So, I'm currently planning a holiday for October 2009. From what I've found so far, it should cost around 2k for the flights, hotel and car, and a few hundred more for park tickets, food and spending money. Although, looking at prices for October this year, if I wait until next summer to book, I should get around £500 knocked off that for late booking so that's great!

I have purchased a Fairfx card ( ) which allows me to load a pre-pay credit card with dollars at a fantastic exchange rate (last time I topped up it was $2 to the £1! Amazing!).

I can use this card just like any other credit card all around the world. So I'll be topping up as much as a can spare, then paying for the holiday with it next year and using it over there in restaurants and such.

It's the best way to save for me. If I tried to save it in my bank or money box, I'll only dip in and spend it!

Anyway, that's my little intro! I hope you enjoy reading my Disney planning as it progresses!