With a Disney VIP Tour guide, we’re adding “luxurious, relaxing, and convenient” to our list.
We were recently guests of Disney VIP Tours, and we had two of the most amazing days full of magical experiences. This VIP Tour was gifted by Disney, but the thoughts (as always!) are completely my own. And my family’s in this case, too!
What is Disney VIP Tours? Straight from their site, it is the opportunity to explore the parks with your own VIP Guide during a customizable experience filled with attractive benefits. Essentially our family had our very own personal Disney guide who helped navigate the parks and attractions like a boss!
We received transportation directly to a VIP entrance and moved freely and easily between the parks. Our guide was our personal Fast Pass to all attractions and dining reservations. He also became many other things like family friend, weather forecaster, storyteller, historian, and not to be underestimated, the family photographer (ie pictures that include Mom)!
If you remember Disney as a kid, how much fun it can be to just show up and have everything done for you – VIP Tours pretty much recreates that Magic for you as a parent.
If you’re going to Disney World for the first time, you may really enjoy the benefit of someone helping you see all that you’d like to see and managing the details. If you’re a Disney pro, you’ll appreciate the leisurely, relaxed, and carefree nature of a day spent with a new friend.
Our experience was truly one that our family will never forget. We feel so incredibly lucky and can’t WAIT to share the details with you so that you can 1) follow along on the fun and even more so 2) think about experiencing the VIP Tours for yourself.
What follows is a preeeeety detailed account of our incredible vacation, but if you have ANY questions at all, please do not hesitate to reach out to me!
— DAY ONE —
First, we decided that we would be enjoying the fireworks at night, and knowing we could still easily ride all of our favorite attractions with our guide, we decided to enjoy breakfast and have a relaxing morning.
We met our incredible guide, Kirk, picked us up after breakfast at our hotel, Disney’s Yacht & Beach Club. We knew we liked Kirk right away from his sunny personality and jump-right-in attitude, but over the course of the next two days, we found Kirk to be the most courteous, positive, professional, and fun representative of Disney you could imagine. When you think of how Walt would want his Parks represented, our guide truly embodied it. And as much as I think he is a special human being, we’ve since heard from friends that EVERY guide is this genuine and attentive. I’m not surprised, of course – Disney’s cast members are the best in the world across the board, but I guess I’m just impressed that there are this many high-performing individuals in the world!
Kirk helped us into his comfortable air-conditioned vehicle (including a booster seat for our youngest son that we didn’t even ask for – he just brought it because he knew his age!). Kirk drove us directly to the VIP valet parking located directly behind Space Mountain – literally in just a matter of minutes, we went from the Beach Club to a VIP entrance at Magic Kingdom. No buses, no parking, no monorail, no boats, no lines! Just jump into a car and like Magic – you’re there!
We were met by the Disney VIP Tours valet service team who checked us into the park, offered us bottles of water, and had snacks waiting for the boys. Kirk did a masterful job of not encouraging too much sugar too early in the day, but still allowing the boys to indulge while at Disney World.
With that, we entered the Magic Kingdom and we’re on Space Mountain within 20 minutes of being picked up at our hotel. Incredible!
Over the course of the next couple of hours, we managed to hit all of our Magic Kingdom favorites in time for a late morning snack to hold us over until lunch. Kirk waited for the food at the counter while we sat down in the shade to reserve a table. He grabbed all of the napkins and silverware. This was a great bonus for parents to relax and focus on bonding with kids.
At one point, our youngest son (who is not a thrill-seeker) decided to sit out one of the rides. Kirk was able to entertain him while the rest of us enjoyed a roller coaster by pointing out Hidden Mickeys, sharing special insights, and background history. Here is a picture of Kirk telling the story about some of the Imagineers for the Haunted Mansion incorporated their love of chess into the building design.
Speaking of the Haunted Mansion, this is one of the rides where we actually didn’t use the fast pass line but we entered through the “servants quarters” to get direct access to the boarding queue.
Early afternoon, we decided that we would move on to Hollywood Studios and have lunch at a fan favorite (and difficult reservation), 50s primetime diner. With our VIP guide, the last minute reservation was no problem.
Our guide once again drove us to a valet parking area right behind the Rock ‘N’ Roller Coaster and we were in the park in a matter of minutes after leaving the Magic Kingdom.
Just like our morning experience, over the course of the next three or four hours, we rode all of our favorite rides (including Star Tours twice), caught a show, and managed to have a leisurely stroll just enjoying the park that afternoon.
We then caught dinner at another fan favorite and difficult advanced dinner reservation, the Sci-Fi Drive-In Theater.
After dinner, we had time to meet some characters and watch the
Star Wars: A Galactic Spectacular from a VIP viewing Area.
The Star Wars: A Galactic Spectacular light show is one of the true highlights of this trip and it’s an experience not to be missed when you are at Disney’s Hollywood Studios. The VIP viewing area put our family front and center for the show, allowing us to marvel in the awesomeness!
Within minutes of the show being over, Kirk smoothly swept us out of the park back to the valet parking area, we were in our car and in our hotel room within 15 minutes of the show being over.
Just imagine…starting the day after a leisurely breakfast, going to TWO parks, doing all of your favorite rides, getting two hard to snag dining reservations, taking in a fireworks show from a VIP viewing area, and being back in your hotel room that evening without breaking a sweat. Kirk made everything so easy for us to just sit back and enjoy.
As impressive as our first day was, the second day might have been even more so.
— DAY TWO —
We started the same way, with a long leisurely sleeping in followed by breakfast at our resort. Kirk met us midmorning before taking us over to Animal Kingdom. There, we walked in a side door right next tovPandora – The World of Avatar at Disney’s Animal Kingdom. Within minutes we were on our first ride, Na’vi River Journey. A few minutes later we went through a back entrance directly toward the front of the line on Avatar Flight of Passage. This was in spite of the standby line already becoming quite long by this point in the morning. Same as yesterday, Kirk had incredible knowledge about the design of Pandora including the beautiful landscaping, which may be my favorite. (Being in Pandora is my favorite experience of all!)
Our guide has snagged yet a third impressive reservation. Tiffins, a signature restaurant at Walt Disney World. I’m planning to write an entire post just about our favorite dining options at Disney as we are quite the foodies and have been super impressed by the healthy and plentiful options!
Throughout all of our meals, it was a delight to eat with Kirk. We would ask him all sorts of questions about Disney World and our conversation was always easy and entertaining. He truly became a member of our family over those couple of days.
In fact, when our boys started becoming a bit squirrly at Tiffins, Kirk quickly engaged them with fun questions and told us not to worry reminding us that while in a wonderful restaurant, that we were in fact still smack dab in the middle of a theme park. Again, our peaceful Disney bliss was quickly restored.
Now, the really impressive magic begins:
As we’re coming out of the restaurant, some of the infamous Orlando rain showers were about to blow in. This is where our guide really truly went into action. Presto, ponchos appeared like magic. Kirk then gave us a couple of options on how we might wait out the storm.
Ultimately, we opted to jump in his vehicle drive to the other side of Animal Kingdom where we jumped out of his care and rode Dinosaur by entering backstage. We stayed completely dry.
After riding Dinosaur, we hopped back in Kirk’s car and drove over to Soarin’ at Epcot, where we would also enter backstage and stay completely dry.
Sure enough, by the time we finished with Soarin’ the rain had passed. Time to enjoy the rest of our day completely dry and not having “wasted” any time. We rode our favorite attractions and moved toward La Hacienda de San Angel for dinner (it was Cinco De Mayo, so a tougher than usual reservation).
Following dinner, my youngest son and I were all full of Disney Magic and content to head back to the Beach Club. For my oldest son and husband, there’s no such thing as enough Magic. They decided to circle back on Magic Kingdom to ride all of their favorites one more time! Of course, Kirk said no problem.
After dropping us off at the resort, they went back to Magic Kingdom arriving at 8pm and rode 7 more attractions (and enjoyed the fireworks) before 11pm.
One of the most frequently asked questions I receive is “so you get unlimited fast passes, right? You don’t have to wait in lines, right?” – and the answer to this is YES, but it’s so much MORE than just a shorter line. It’s truly about experiencing Disney in a whole new way, a more magical way than I could have dreamed, and in a way that we will surely never forget.
So what else can I say about Disney VIP Tours? I can say THANK YOU. Thank you to the entire team at Disney and Disney’s VIP Tours for creating this incredible service for families. Thank you for your time, your expertise, your patience, your conversation, and most of all, the memories. We can’t WAIT to go back!