Archive for the ‘Holidays’ Category

I’m Dreaming of… Thanksgiving Dinner!

That title doesn’t sound very “travel-y”, does it?

Well, this Thanksgiving, my new husband and I are traveling 1,200 miles for a special Thanksgiving Meal.

No turkey and stuffing for us this year – I made an ADR at the Sci-Fi Dine In at Disney’s Hollywood Studios!

Sci-Fi is a lunch/dinner restaurant done up in 50s drive in style – Disney calls them “automo-booths”:

So my Thanksgiving Dinner Dream is of a chocolate/vanilla, Bailey’s & Kahlua shake

and spinach & artichoke dip (unless they can make their onion rings gluten free, then I’d definitely go with the onion rings!) which will pair perfectly with watching the B-Movie clips and cartoons on the movie screen!

After dinner, we’re heading over to the Osbourne Family Lights display to get a head start on Christmas!

Give the Gift of Travel This Holiday

Black Friday, Small Business Saturday and Cyber Monday have everyone out shopping for holiday gifts for loved ones (and themselves!).  But what do you get for the person that has everything?  When my husband or I want something, we just go and get it.  This makes gift giving difficult though.

Consider the gift of travel.  This doesn’t mean give your loved one a trip somewhere.  That could be much more than you were planning on spending.  There are many ideas that you could use.

  • Travel related equipment.  This would include luggage, travel kits, travel pillow, alarm clock, space saver bags, anything to make travel easier.
  • In-room gift.  If they already have travel planned, you could have something delivered to their room when they arrive, whether it is a bottle of wine, treats or, in the case of a cruise, an onboard credit to use on whatever they would like.
  • Prepaid gift card.  This could be either a Visa/MasterCard gift card or if they are going on a Disney vacation, a Disney Gift card.
  • A gift certificate.  If you are not sure where they might want to go, you can always give them a travel gift certificate.  We offer gift certificates in any amount that can be used towards any travel plans.  Just ask your Travel On A Dream agent for details.

A Relaxing Holiday Vacation?

Whenever I have clients going to Walt Disney World between Christmas and New Years, even the week prior to Christmas, I warn them.  Between the holidays you can definitely run into park closures due to capacity.  It gets busy with people trying to cram in the holiday cheer.  You will need to have patience.  The hustle and bustle of the season will be clear.  This does not mean that you should avoid the holidays at Walt Disney World, but you just need to be prepared.  If you don’t like crowds and waiting in lines, this might not be a good choice for you.

On the flip side, a cruise at the holidays will offer pretty much the same experience as other times during the year, though the holiday cheer will shine through.  You would think that things are busier everywhere, but one thing that gets overlooked is where people can come from.  At Walt Disney World, park guests are not limited by the number of hotel rooms at Disney, as they could drive in from the area (locals) or stay at other off-property hotels.  The parks do have a capacity limit, but it is fairly high.

On a cruise, the capacity is limited by the number of seats in a lifeboat and the number of berths on the ship.  It doesn’t matter if it’s a busier season, they can’t put anymore people on the ship than they could during the value season.

On a Disney Cruise at the holidays, the ship will be decorated with garland, Christmas trees and characters in holiday garb.  You still will be able to enjoy the relaxing aspect of a cruise, with a little holiday cheer thrown in.

We close with a picture from our Holiday Photo contest winner, Roseanne, taken on the Disney Wonder.

A Few of Our Favorite Things

While raindrops on roses and whiskers on kittens sound great, Travel On A Dream has a few of our own favorite things to share with you at the holidays.

Your referral!  We are overjoyed when a new potential client calls and says that you sent them to us.  And we reward you for your referrals!  We want to show you that we appreciate you putting enough trust in us to refer your friends and family to us to plan their dream vacation.  Referral credits are paid out after your friend or family travels in the form of a gift card or onboard credit for your next trip planned with Travel On A Dream (sorry, we cannot pay until you travel after they travel).

Your feedback!  This week we set up a post vacation questionnaire which will be emailed to you shortly after your trip.  You’re responses are sent to management and are confidential.  We do not track who responds and only know who it is if you put something in your response to identify you.  There is a place for you to request to be contacted by management and we are more than happy to do so.  If you ever want to call and give us feedback, you can call 888-681-1240 (option 1) to give us your comments or email  Your feedback helps us to provide the best possible service to you.

Your vacations!  When you work with us, we feel that we are assisting you in selecting the ideal vacation for you and your family.  We are not a “cookie cutter” travel agency that knows what is perfect for you without finding out about you.  We have the answers, but not before the questions are asked.  We love to help you plan your vacation.  I can’t tell you how excited I am for you and your trips!  Sometimes I wish I could come with all of you!!  We don’t consider ourselves sales agents, we consider ourselves travel consultants.  We are available to help you with your decisions but ultimately it is your vacation and we want you to make the best choices for you.

You top the list!  Everyone of you!  For our clients, you are not just another reservation.  Whether you are a client, a referrer or just a friend of ToaD’s, we appreciate each of you and look forward to sharing our lives and your lives with you in the upcoming year.

Let’s Get Planning!

The holidays are just around the corner.  Tomorrow is Thanksgiving, Friday is Black Friday, then Small Business Saturday followed by Cyber Monday.  Wait, those aren’t true “holidays”, except for Thanksgiving, right?

When coming up with gift ideas for holidays – birthdays, anniversaries, Christmas – we typically turn to travel plans first.  Let’s face it, if I want a new toaster, sweater, wii game, whatever, I go out and buy it.  I’ve never been one for giving my relatives a list of what I wanted for a holiday and then waiting until that holiday.  Usually, if I put it on a list, I want it now.  So that brought us to the gift of travel.  Travel takes a little time to plan (though I’ve had a few clients do it only a day prior).  Sure, when it’s travel for my husband and me, it’s not a surprise, but that’s ok.  I’m not big on surprises anyway.

January starts what the travel industry calls “the wave”.  This is when it seems like people do a lot of planning for their future vacations.  I see an increase in activity starting Christmas night.  I think this is because over the course of the next 4-5 weeks, people are getting together with friends and family, celebrating the season and discussing the upcoming year (or more).  Some jobs require you to request time off for the year at the start of the year.

So why is now a good time to start planning your trips?  To save money!  The cruise lines and tour companies know that you are going to start planning in January.  Things are going to be very busy for them then.  Many of you will find the best deal at the time and book your travel.  You’re all too busy to plan something now.  It’s the holidays after all!  The travel companies don’t like that you are busy and want you to book now, so many of them offer some incredible deals if you book before the end of the year.  I am getting email after email of Black Friday/Cyber Monday/End of the Year sales right now from cruise lines, tour companies, hotels.

What’s that?  You’re too busy to do this now?  Now is the perfect time for you to go to your trusted travel agent.  Take a few minutes to tell them what you are looking for — what your ideal trip would be.  Don’t leave out any details as this can make it more stressful for you.  Then sit back, or better yet, run to your holiday parties, get your shopping done, bake your cookies while your travel agent pulls together a quote or two for your vacation.  You’ll be glad you did!

To kick off the holiday season, we are starting our 12 Days of ToaD-mas blog series.  We will highlight vacation destinations over the course of the next four weeks leading to Christmas.  Not only will we talk about a destination, we will also select a tour/cruise company and price out a sample package so you can get a idea of what that could cost you.  This can help give you a jump start into planning your dream vacation for 2012 and beyond.  We hope you’ll join us!

Cruise Over the Holidays with MSC Cruises for Less

Right now you can get a balcony on a holiday sailing on MSC Poesia to the Caribbean for the price of an oceanview stateroom. You can also book a superior balcony for the standard balcony rate. Prices for these cruises start at $649 per person plus taxes and fees. Additionally, deposits for these cruises (and all MSC cruises) are now just $100 per person! Here is a listing of the cruises with these special promotions:

7 nights – MSC Poesia

Thanksgiving Cruise

  • November 19
  • Starting at $649 per person
  • Western Caribbean Ports of Call:  Fort Lauderdale, Key West, Cozumel, Isla de Roatan, Montego Bay

Christmas Cruise

  • December 23
  • Starting at $799 per person
  • Eastern Caribbean Ports of Call:  Fort Lauderdale, St. Thomas, San Juan, Nassau

New Years Cruise

  • December 30
  • Starting at $949 per person
  • Western Caribbean Ports of Call:  Fort Lauderdale, Key West, Cozumel, Isla de Roatan, Montego Bay

President’s Day Cruise

  • February 18
  • Starting at $699 per person
  • Eastern Caribbean Ports of Call:  Fort Lauderdale, St. Thomas, San Juan, Nassau

In addition to these promotions, you will also qualify for Travel On A Dream’s onboard credit promotion when you book your MSC Cruise with us.  Contact us today!

Happy New Year

As 2011 begins we reflect on what was 2010.  So many great things happened that year, including the opening of Travel On A Dream and our Toad’s Travels Blog.

We have been so lucky to get to know so many of you either through meet and greets, different travels and referrals.  We look forward to 2011 and hope that we get to meet many more of you.  We also look forward to helping many of you plan your dream vacations.  Whether its your first Disney cruise, 100th trip to Disney World, or your first time to another destination without “the mouse”, we will be here for you to help with the planning, offer our expert advice and get you the best price possible.

Thank you for all of your support, referrals and bookings in 2010.  Here’s to a fantastic 2011!!

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