As I am away this week visiting Disneyland Paris, I thought it’d be nice to get a few guest posts from those who have already experienced the Disney magic. Today we have Amy from www.epsandamy.co.uk sharing her tips and hints from her many visits. Take it away Amy.
I have been to Disneyland Paris 3 years running now and definitely think we have done it to death! As much as I adore visiting Disney, there is really a limit to the number of time you can visit this park, it’s pretty small especially when you compare it to America.
The first 2 times we visited Disney we stayed in the New York Hotel, which is their 4 star. The hotel is lovely, there is a pool and Spa, a choice of 2 restaurants (essentially a cheaper and more expensive one), free parking etc., you can read up on their hotel here (http://www.disneylandparis.co.uk/hotels/disneys-hotel-new-york/). One thing you will want to know is that the pool is very deep, we only tried their pool the once (and it was Easter so we never attempted the outdoor pools) but it was much too deep, especially for children. I couldn’t touch the floor and when trying to swim with 2 children as well it was near impossible and exhausting.
The family room consists of 2 double beds, which is unfortunate, it would have been much nicer to stay in a family room which had a separate adult section like we did at Chessington World of Adventures (https://www.chessington.com/resort-hotels/chessington-safari-hotel.aspx), as it was Mummy was in one bed with one child and Daddy in the other with the other child…harmonious it was not.
The last time we visited Disneyland Paris we stayed in the Sequoia Lodge Hotel, their 3 star hotel. Again, there is a pool/spa, only the one restaurant and free parking, plus other bits and bobs (http://www.disneylandparis.co.uk/hotels/disneys-sequoia-lodge/). The pool here is also deep, but not as deep at the New York Hotel, I could actually touch the floor here even if they children couldn’t, there is however a slide which the children loved.
The family room is the same as New York: 2 double beds, perhaps slightly smaller than New York but barely noticeable.
The two main differences between the two hotels were: 1) a few minutes extra walk to the park, as an adult you don’t really notice the difference but the children do,
and 2) breakfast in New York consisted of hot options as well as continental options (croissants, pastries, ham cheese etc.) but there is no hot option in Sequoia Lodge.
One tip for you is that there are no tea and coffee making facilities in the rooms (unless you get a suite I believe), so either take your own kettle and tea bags (there is milk available to purchase in the hotel shop) or if you ask them for a kettle to warm your child’s milk for bed time they happily provide a kettle (we actually needed a kettle for milk warming purposes which is how I discovered they just hand them out no questions asked).
Every time we have been we have used their meal plan, twice on half board (plus) basis, which includes breakfast in your hotel (buffet style), a choice of 19 restaurants both in the hotels and in the parks where the voucher can be used either lunch or dinner not both and a tea time treat (which is a drink and cake/ice cream from certain places within the park). Personally we used the voucher for dinner (pre-booking before you get to Disney is recommended) and took snacks with us to tide us through to the 3pm tea time snack, I know some people take sandwich bags to make rolls at breakfast, however this is disliked by Disney, although I’ve never heard of anyone being approached for doing it.
On our last trip we upgrade to the half board premium, which means you can use the vouchers in 23 of the restaurants and also book the Auberge de Cendrillon (Meet the Princesses meal) and Buffalo Bill’s Wild West Show without paying any extra. If you want to book these and you only have the standard half board (or half board plus) then you just pay the extra, you don’t lose out on the value of the vouchers.
It is also important to note, that if you have a child under 3 they don’t get their own vouchers, which is fine in the buffet restaurants, they are quite happy for under 3’s to eat with the family, but we did have some trouble in the a ’la carte restaurants they expect the child to eat off your plate, but Jack was only a month off 3 so could really have done with his own meal, especially as I was ordering steak which hardly suited him! So we ended up having to pay for a child’s meal for him, which I wasn’t happy about since they stated under 3’s were free. They also don’t get a tea time treat voucher, so you have to share your cake too! The website does say there is dedicated children menus for children under 3 and it is quite possible we simply didn’t see this, so it is worth asking them about it.
If you are looking for comparisons, downgrading to the lower starred hotel saved us about £300 over our 3 day trip, and really all that was different was a few minutes’ walk and a hot breakfast. Totally worth downgrading. The premium half board is £20 more per adult and £12 more per child, per day which is quite a lot. If you are planning on going to both the Wild West Show and the Princess meal it is worth doing, otherwise it is just the wider choice of restaurants so probably not worth it.
Thanks so much for sharing Amy , some brilliant Disneyland Paris tips! We are having lunch with the Princesses and I really want to meet Cinderella too. You can also find Amy on Twitter: @eps_amy and Facebook facebook.com/epsandamy