First Trip Back to the GC: Final Thoughts

I almost forgot to post our “final thoughts” on our trip after returning home for about a week now. I shared a lot of our “in the moment” thoughts, but once we returned home, wrote the trip report, and thought about it some more, we might have a different perspective.

I really don’t want to overstate this but I do believe in telling it “like it is” as we experienced it – both the positive and the negative. And if you’re a longtime local, you probably know what I’m taking about.

The Negative

1. Crowds

We try to avoid Disney in the summer both at DL and WDW because the CM experience isn’t as good – they’re often overworked and overtired. But with the opening of Cars Land, DL feels like summer most of the year. From watching the status over the past year, I realize there are some down times but those are probably not when we go.

The best way (to us) to ride RS Racers (if you’re staying onsite) is to get a FP and return later in the day. But if you’re a day tripper, this really isn’t convenient and you’re kinda stuck waiting in a long line or riding the Single Rider line.

2. New Ticket Process for AP holders and regular ticket holders

It seemed like far more thought was given about how to get the photos on the regular tickets and not the AP tickets, although the solution is rather lame. Why not set up a photo line right where you purchase the ticket – not at the gate.

3. Local vs. Tourist

The addition of Cars Land to DCA seemed to have grabbed the attention of Disney lovers far and wide. This has changed the local experience not just because out-of-towners have arrived but because Disney seems to be catering to the out-of-towner and, therefore, sacrificing the local.

The cost of an AP soared and it seemed common knowledge that Disney wants to discourage locals. Carnation Plaza Gardens where locals danced to Big Bands going back to the Walt Disney himself was turned into a Princess Meet n Greet (there is supposed to be some accommodation for the dancers but it will not be the same).

Even World of Color appeals far more to tourists than to locals. The Food & Wine Festival, which was heavily attended by locals (from Las Vegas, we were considered quite the distant traveler – lol) and seems to have disappeared for good.

The Positive

Cars Land

For us, it was very exciting, both in architecture, atmosphere, dining, and attractions (actually, for us, this only applied to Radiator Springs Racers). This experience gave me such a WOW, I’m still flying high. I’m not sure that Epcot or Indy quite did this to me. 🙂 And the locals I chatted with love it, too, and their answer is to jump in the Single Rider line when they want to ride RS Racers.

Our Conclusion

A lot of the above could be ironed out over time. We’re already planning a birthday trip back in July. I’m sure we’ll continue to go just because of the proximity. But we could also be persuaded to choose WDW over DL in the future.

About Kathy

Novelist & Music Producer