Tuesday’s Tip- Watch 4th of July Fireworks LIVE! From the Magic Kingdom !!!!

Happy Independence Day to all of my fellow Mouskaholics out there!  Are you sad that you were unable to make it down to Walt Disney World to celebrate our nation’s 241st birthday?  Is the weather bad where you are, cancelling your local fireworks?  Do you just miss Disney and want your Disney fix?  Well have no fear!  If you head to the Disney Parks Blog tonight at 8:55 pm you’ll be able to live stream “Disney’s Celebrate America! A Fourth of July Concert in the Sky” fireworks.

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At 8:55 the live stream will give you a brief insider look at the behind the scenes of Disney’s nighttime spectacular shows, and the fireworks will begin at 9:00.

Fireworks, Disney, and not having to fight the traffic and crowds… yes please!


Tuesday’s Tips- Take an Uber!

Disney makes getting from Orlando International Airport (MCO) to your resort a piece of cake with Disney’s Magical Express.  With this free service you’ll be taken from the airport straight to your resort on a Disney themed motor coach.  You won’t even have to worry about going to baggage claim!  Disney takes care of that for you as well!  Put the special tags on your bags, and they will be magically delivered to your resort after your arrival.


While these awesome perks are magical indeed, they’re designed to keep you on property.  A magic bus that eliminates the need for a rental car?  Yes perk, but also convenient for Disney to keep you (and more importantly your $$$) in their parks, stores and restaurants.  (I’m certainly not complaining either… “All magic comes at a price.”)


There have been plenty of Disney trips that we have taken where we’ve been very content to stay right on Disney property and keep our adventure there, however there are sometimes where it is also nice to get off property to visit other theme parks, and restaurants.  While I’m a dedicated “mouskaholic”  I also very much enjoy the magic of Harry Potter.

Because of my devotion to this other magic, I have visited The Wizarding World of Harry Potter at Universal Studios. (Shhhh… don’t tell the Disney Gods lol!)  We had a few options for getting from Disney to Universal for us, taking an “Uber” was the most economical, and quickest option.  If you purchase your Universal tickets through at travel agent, they have the option of selling you tickets that include round trip transportation from the Disney Resort to the Universal resort via Mears Motorcoaches.  This isn’t a bad option, but it is time consuming because the bus makes stops at multiple resorts, AND costs $26 per person for the roundtrip transfer.  For a family of four you’re looking at $104.00 extra just to get from Disney to Universal.  Another option is renting a car… If you’re on a week long trip you’re looking at at around $150.00 – $200.00 (depending on car type and size) for a week long car rental.  If you’re only plan is to head to universal or off property once or twice this is definitely not the most economical plan.  You could head to the “Disney Car Care Center” and rent a car just for the day, but getting there means taking time out of your valuable vacation time to do so.

So what is the most economical solution that I’ve found?  Ride-sharing Apps!  I personally have only used Uber, but I know that Lyft is also available in the Orlando Area.  Ride-sharing apps base their fares on a combination of mileage and time spent in travel, rather than basing in on per person.  So with an UberX you can transport up to 4 people for one low price.


Here is the price (without a surge) going from Disney’s All Star Music Resort to Universal Studios


So for $17.24  you can transport 1-4 individuals to Universal (one way).  So even at the round trip price of about $35.00, that’s still considerably less than round trip for two on the Mears motor coaches ($52.00 round trip for 2), and about the same price as a one day car rental, just without the hassle of heading to the Disney Car Care Center.

Here are some other approximations of cost to other popular orlando destinations (Estimates are done from the All Star Music Resort to the destination)

One of my favorite places to eat off of Disney Property is Giordano’s Pizza!  It’s deep dish Chicago style STUFFED pizza, and it’s AMAZING (FYI, they also deliver).  An uber to Giordano’s is approximately $11 bucks


An Uber to the Orlando Eye= $14.00

An Uber to Orlando Premium Outlets= $12

An Uber to Seaworld= $13.50

To use Uber you just need to download the app to your smart phone, and sign up with a valid credit card.  If you’re interested in getting up to $15 off your first ride enter this code when you sign up- ashleyf1931ue 

Happy Riding!


Do you want more travel tips, and help planning your magical vacation to Disney World, Universal, or SeaWorld?  Contact Ashley@charmingtravelsllc.com for all of your central Florida travel needs!  She specializes in Disney and central Florida locations, and her planning services are free of charge!

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Tuesday’s Tip-Grocery delivery

Did you know that there are grocery services that you can order in advance from and have the groceries delivered to your resort?  This service is great, especially for long trips.  We’ve taken advantage of this 2 or 3 times and have had zero complaints!  The service is affordable and very convenient.

We’ve had great success using “Garden Grocer“.  The have an easy to navigate page where you can order essentials for your trip.  We typically order a few cases of bottled water, yogurt, bagels, granola bars, energy drinks, and maybe a little beer and wine.  These are all things that you can get at your resort food court, however the money that you can save is INCREDIBLE by using the grocery service.  Additionally when you place your order 60, 30, or 15 days in advance Garden Grocer offers a discount*!

So how does it work?

  • You begin by filling your cart.
  • Go to check out
  • Fill out your resort information (there is a drop down menu of Disney Resorts)
  • Let them know what day and time you’re checking in
  • Your groceries will be delivered to your resort on that day!
  • Don’t worry about your refrigerated items, the resort will keep them in their fridge!
  • When you get to your room call bell services and have them bring them to your room.

So what’s the catch?  There is a slight delivery fee, and an optional tip for the delivery.

Here is my sample cart-

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And the additional fees at check out

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So yes, this may seem pricey for what you’re getting BUT… compared to prices on Disney property this is a steal.  For example, 1 can of of Monster Energy drink is $2.89.  At the Disney resorts is about $4.50.  A bottle of water at Disney is $2.50 where you can get a case of 40 of them from garden grocers for $9.99 ($.25 per bottle!) By my best estimate for everything in my cart, it would cost approximately $230.00 to buy everything on Disney Property, so even if you tipped the delivery person $10.00 bringing the total to $81.29, you’re looking at a savings of $148.71!!!!

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*As I mentioned above you can save money by placing your order in advance- here are the details- “Take advantage of our special savings by ordering in advance, (15 Days= 5%, 30 Days= 7%, 60 Days= 10%) off your subtotal. **Note: Discounts do not apply to add-ons of any kind.”Screen Shot 2016-12-31 at 1.19.10 PM.png

One last note about Garden Grocer, if you’re ordering alcohol.  You will have to provide ID by scanning and faxing or emailing them your driver’s license.

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I hope you found this helpful! Don’t forget to tip the person from bell services who deliver your groceries to your room!  It’s a nice service, and a convenience for you!

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If you’re ready to book your next vacation be sure to email Ashley@charmingtravelsllc.com for your free quote.  Her booking and planning services are always free of charge.

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Tuesday’s Tip- Pack a Power Strip!

We live in a digital world where keeping devices charged can be essential.  Lets say you’re a  family of 4… Mom, Dad, a 14 year old, and a 12 year old.  Because we live in this technology driven age, all four of you have cell phones that need charged daily, not to mention the other devices like tablets and camera batteries that will need charged.  The average hotel room has 6-8 outlets, but some are already taken by the alarm clock, lamp, television, and hair dryer, not to mention some of those are hard to access because of the furniture being in the way.

One way to keep my devices charged and avoid having to tear the room apart to find an outlet is to pack a power strip.  To me this is an easy way to make the outlets very accessible and increase the amount of outlets available.

You can pick one up at your local hardware store, or even on amazon!

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Interested in getting more tips and help planning your vacation?  Be sure to contact Ashley with Charming Travels to plan your vacation!  Disney, Universal, Cruises, and All-Inclusives, Ashley can help with all your planning needs!

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Tuesday’s Tip- Celebration Buttons

Did you know that if it’s your first time to Disney, your birthday, your anniversary, a family reunion, just married, just engaged, or a general celebration you can request a celebration button?  They are free of charge, and sometimes come with perks!  My husband and I usually plan our trips around our Anniversary in June and we probably have at least 6 “Happy Anniversary” buttons laying around the house.  We even were given a free dessert for our anniversary at a restaurant on the boardwalk!

This isn’t to say that you will get something special 100% of the time while wearing a button, but cast members genuinely go out of their way to make your celebration special.  They will be sure to tell you happy birthday, or ask what your special celebration is!

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Trying to plan your special celebration trip?  Let Ashley take the worry and hassle out of your planning!  Email ashley@charmingtravelsllc.com for your free quote!