13. AVOIDING TRAVEL SCAMS
The Travel Writer's Life
The Ultimate Travel Writerís Program and itís published by a company called the American Writers & Artists Inc. (AWAI)
14. Disney World Travel Tips
* For birthday boys and girls, donít forget to pick up a birthday button at Guest Services, which gets you special recognition from cast members and characters.
* New moms can celebrate the fact that all four Disney theme parks offer private rooms with rocking chairs and low lighting for nursing mothers, feeding rooms with highchairs, bibs and plastic spoons, plus diaper-changing rooms. Baby-care products such as disposable diapers, pull-on rubber pants, formula and teethers are also for sale.
* In-room baby-sitting services or resort-based child-care programs such as Mouseketeer Clubhouse or The Neverland Club are a great option for parents looking for a night out without the little ones.
* A theme-park "rider switch" policy gives both mom and dad a chance to enjoy the latest attractions without the double wait. A parent who waits with a young child while the other parent rides the attraction can get on the ride with minimal wait time once the first parent comes off.
* Most Disney restaurants offer children's menus, plus crayons and coloring books to keep kids entertained. Character dining -- where a cast of characters visits your table while you eat -- is a great way to introduce little ones to Disney characters.
* The party never ends with Extra Magic Hours, this exclusive time in the theme parks for Disney resort guests. On select days, a park opens one hour prior to scheduled park opening ... or remains open up to three additional hours -- just for Disney resort guests. It adds up to 16 hours of exclusive theme park time for resort guests each week. Selected attractions are available for the exclusive use of early-rising guests at the 23 Walt Disney World resorts. And Disney transportation schedules are adjusted to accommodate guests' journey between their resort and the park offering the exclusive time.
* Celebrate during a festival or special event. The Walt Disney World theme parks offer not just all the world-famous attractions and shows that make the Disney parks destinations of choice for millions of vacationers each year but also extra excitement. Some of the recurring theme park events that are included with regular admission include the Epcot International Flower & Garden Festival (spring), ESPN The Weekend (spring), Star Wars Weekends (spring), Epcot International Food & Wine Festival (fall), and ABC Super Soap Weekend (fall).
* For a romantic occasion, book a table for two at Victoria & Albert's at Disney's Grand Floridian Resort & Spa. Itís a truly elegant experience with Wedgwood China, Christofle silver, Frette linens, personalized menus and impeccable service.
* Want to book the most exclusive table at Walt Disney World Resort? The Chef's Table in the kitchen at Victoria & Albert's at Disney's Grand Floridian Resort & Spa. Seats up to eight, and it books up to six months in advance. Chef Scott Hunnel takes extraordinary care of his guests.
* Start a new family tradition with afternoon tea. This centuries-old tradition is observed daily at Garden View Lounge at Disney's Grand Floridian Resort & Spa, a formal affair with real china, linens, and an assortment of dainty pastries and finger sandwiches. Also French press coffee service.
* Grown-ups looking for a night out without the kids can try a number of adult-only restaurants. Favorites include Victoria & Albert's and CŪtricos at Disney's Grand Floridian Resort & Spa; Jiko-The Cooking Place at Disney's Animal Kingdom Lodge; Artist Point at Disney's Wilderness Lodge; Bistro de Paris at the France pavilion in Epcot World Showcase; California Grill at Disney's Contemporary Resort; Todd English's bluezoo at the Walt Disney World Dolphin; The Dining Room at Wolfgang Puck's in Downtown Disney West Side.
* Let kids try something new. Young guests can don a chef's jacket and toque for a quick culinary lesson in the free Junior Chef Program at Epcot and many of the Walt Disney World restaurants. Chefs assist kids in tossing a salad for their family, for instance, or decorating their own desserts. To participate, just ask a server.
Finding great Airfare deals is an art form. It requires research and lots of time. There isnít as many ways to get a cheap flight domestically except to use the typical comparison sites such as wwwÖ.
15. I became a "mystery shopper." I'm not sure if everyone is familiar with this term or not, but it's essentially going to hotels or flying with an airline company and evaluating their customer service on all levels. By filling out this simple evaluation form, I would receive up to 50% off on my stay at the hotel and/or on my plane ticket there. So I don't get paid, but I get a super discount which goes a long way.
The company I mystery shop for is called Sensors Quality Management (SQM) and the mystery shopping program is called Evaluate It by SQM. It's pretty awesome because the program is designed for people who travel and you don't have to commit to anything. You just register as a mystery shopper and then periodically check the website to see if any of the assignments coincide with your travel itinerary. For example, if you are planning a trip to L.A, maybe there will be a flight to L.A that will need to be evaluated. In that case, you may be in luck and may only have to pay a discounted airfare and fill in a simple form with questions like "is the washroom stocked with toilet paper?"
So that's how I can afford to travel....if anyone wants more information, feel free to send me a message. Or you can visit http://www.evaluateitbysqm.com : ) Hope that was useful!
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