You wake up after your first sleep in at your Disney hotel and you are faced with your first dilema of the trip, Extra Magic Hours or sleep in?
To encourage people to stay on site, Disney open one of their parks 2 hours earlier and restrict access to a limited number of people. As a hotel guest you can feel like a VIP and enter the park while others look on envious.
However, the reality is slightly different. It turns out that hundreds of people have had the same idea as you and are now waiting to enter the park. Streams of people bound past you with an enthusiasm that should never be seen at 8am in the morning.
You spot several Cast members seemingly there to greet you until you discover that they really just want to check your VIP credentials. Somehow, out of 5 possible queues you join the line that doesn’t move. An old gentlemen agrues with the cast member, ‘What do you mean I need my Easypass?’ You grip yours tightly feeling proud you listened during the 15 minute check in procedure/lecture.
Finally, you get through and are wizzing your way towards the gates. Your arm now starting to hurt as you have dragged your family since they left the hotel room that morning. It will be worth it as you will have a whole park to yourself (forgetting the swarm of people you have just made it through).
Where do we go first? You spent so long planning how to get here you forgot what to do here. You see a Donald, a Micky and queues already forming. You jump into the first queue you see. Then you stand still, watching people rush past you into the park. You start to panic, the kids love characters but Big Thunder Mountain was 90 minutes wait all day yesterday!
You abandon the queue and go for it. You bound up Main Street, turn back to retrieve your bewildered family who didnt leave the queue with you and again bound up Main Street.
No one is going that way, everything is going well until you see the rope. ‘This area doesn’t open until 10’ the cast member explains. In fact the majority of the park isn’t open early.
Off to Fantasyland we go. The first hour is great as the queues are small and excitement is high. Hour 2 is less so and by 3pm that afternoon we were back in the Hotel room, exhausted.
So tonight I will ask myself the same question I do every night, Extra Magic or Extra sleep?