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After our trip to Disneyland last September, our family decided to take a full year away from Disney vacations. That is right, we are skipping Disney for a FULL YEAR! I know, I know, to many this is no big deal. However our family takes multiple trips to Disneyland every year, so this was a big change. (And yes, we know we are lucky to get to go to Disney so often.)
Well, we are now almost 10 full months into our year without Disney, so I thought I would update you on how we are doing, and what our thoughts are on taking a year off of Disney when we are definitely Disney addicts.
Why Are We Skipping Disney?
Well, we decided for multiple reasons it was time to not go to Disney (specifically Disneyland) for a while. Some were financial, some were because we wanted to explore other places, some were family related, and some were because we wanted to make sure our kids realized how truly blessed they are to be able to visit so often. We also were looking at possibly going to Walt Disney World together as a family (but that probably won’t be happening because of school and work schedules, among other factors – boo).
How Is A Year Without Disney Going?
I mean, come on, it isn’t going bad just because we haven’t been to Disney. Life is life and a lot of it is the daily grind, but we have also had a lot of fun. We have been having adventures, enjoying time together as a family, and even took a few small trips. Mostly day trips. Things we probably would have done even if we were going to Disney as normal. But we took a “big” trip too.
I put qutations around big because well, it ended up not being so big. We had a great plan. We needed to go to Portland for a wedding. We would spend the weekend in Portland, then head to the coast, and then down to the Redwoods. It was going to be fun and we were really looking forward to it.We had spent months as a family going on local hikes and trails to get ready for the trails in the Redwoods. We had been researching trails and even found out where some scenes from Star Wars movies had been filmed… We honestly were not missing Disneyland. We were having a great time…
And then THIS HAPPENED. Basically, day one our van broke down and our vacation went to crap. One thing after another went wrong. Now don’t get me wrong, we still had fun, but we had to cancel basically everything after the Portland leg of our trip. I am not going to rehash the trip, but I am going to say this- It made us miss Disney.
I know, I know, things can go wrong on a Disney vacation, but personally, they seem tiny when you can still spend time at the happiest place on earth. We were grateful that our car actually broke down on this trip rather than in the desert with no cell service on the way to Disneyland. But when we go to Disneyland, once we get down there, all the little things that went wrong, like the water out at the hotel, wouldn’t matter because we would be heading to the happiest place on earth.
We missed that we knew we would all enjoy the same place together. Sure we had fun at the OMSI museum but really, there was only so much the babies could do. At Disney there is always something for them, whether it be people watching, parades, Disney Junior, characters, and yes, even rides.
We missed being truly immersed in magic. Disney has done such an amazing job at theming that when you are there, you almost forget about the outside world. We missed that.
What we didn’t miss- the cost. Disney vacations are expensive, even when you use some amazing save money tips (which I will be sharing how we still save money on Disney soon). That said, our trip (had we done the whole thing) would have been about the same price as a Disney vacation minus any souvenirs or food purchased in the parks.
Are You Still Happy You Took A Year Off?
So are we still happy we took a year off of Disney? YES! We had a lot going on this year, and while a magical break would have been nice, I think it would have also added a lot of stress trying to plan and fit it into our schedule. Also, the main reason we decided to take a year off was because we wanted to remind our kids (especially the Goof) that there is so much more out there than Disney, and to remind them how lucky they are to be able to go so often.
It also gave us a year to focus on so much else. Like family. Like this site. Like enjoying the great area we live in.
We are already planning our next Disneyland vacation (YAY!) but am I still happy we took a year off- HECK YES! And quite honestly, I think it is going to be the start to fewer Disney vacations in general. There is so much more out there that I want my children to experience and as they get older, it will be easier for them to do those other things. We will always go back to Disney, but it won’t be multiple times a year.
I have been checking out some great deals for our next trip. I am super busy, but I still want to be able to save money, so I am super excited to be checking out Get Away Today for our vacation. They have amazing packages and they often include free nights at nearby hotels, and lots of fun extras. I also love the layaway plan they have so I can put only $125 down (less than Disney requires) and make payments until we go. You can check out their packages by clicking the button below.
*I am an affiliate for Get Away Today. This means I earn a small commission if you book through my link- but you still get the same great deal.*
While I am looking forward to our Disney vacation, I am also looking forward to all the other vacations we will be taking as a family in the years to come. I am glad we are skipping Disney, but I know it will always be our second home. Are you a Disney addict that has skipped Disney? If so, let me know how it went for you in the comments below. Are you glad you did it?