Thursday, 18 January 2018

New Year's Eve in Disneyland Paris

Hey guys! Happy New Year (she says almost 3 weeks into January!).

As some of you may know if you've been following my social media accounts, myself and Kevin headed off to Disneyland Paris for New Year's Eve and I thought I'd do a post all about it. We actually went in 2016 too but 2017 was a separately ticketed event and SO much better.

How to Get There?
We flew from Cork to Charles de Gaulle with Aer Lingus. We only decided in October that we were going to go so the flights weren't exactly the cheapest coming in at about €500 for the two of us. Not bad but we probably could have gotten it a little bit cheaper if we booked earlier. 
We used the Magical Shuttle transfer service from the airport to the hotel which we booked from the Disneyland Paris website (this was an add on for €92 for return for both of us).

Where to Stay?
This year we stayed in Disney's Sequoia Lodge which was gorgeous! It's themed around an American forest / woodland with Bambi featuring in the hotel room decor. The hotel itself has a wooden look about it and is only across the lake (about a 5 min walk) from Disney Village so I'd definitely recommend walking to the parks instead of waiting for the shuttle bus which comes every 10/15 mins. 
Last year we stayed in The Cheyenne which is Toy Story themed. It's a basic hotel but we stayed in one of the newly renovated rooms and it was lovely. Again you have the shuttle bus here but as far as I know there's no specific walking route. 

Where to Book?
This year we booked the hotel and park tickets directly on the Disneyland Paris website. We found this to be way cheaper than doing it ourselves (which I wouldn't recommend for this trip as you'll almost never get it cheaper) or by going through a travel agent. At €1400 for 3 nights / 4 days, it wasn't exactly cheap but you have to take into account the time of year it is. We also got free half board by staying in The Sequoia Lodge. We've previously booked the trip with Abbey Travel which seemed to be the cheapest travel agent.
Because we were going for New Year's Eve, we had to buy separate tickets which were about €30 each and this gave you access to the park from 5pm (you can use your normal park ticket before this) with a New Year's Eve Party wristband. I highly recommend booking this as soon as you can as it was a sold out event. There wasn't anything different about this compared to a normal park day except for some of the rides and restaurants staying open much later and of course the New Year's Eve fireworks display which was absolutely amazing. We booked this as an add on directly on the Disneyland Paris website. 

Tips & Tricks
If you stay on-site in a Disney hotel, you can avail of Magic Hours for free which lets you enter the park 1-2 hours before it opens to the public.
You can get a free fastpass at most ride entrances so go to these early for the busy rides as they can sell out. It'll give you a time slot to come back and you can queue in a separate (and much quicker) queue. You can only have one fastpass at a time but it tells you on your fastpass ticket what time you can get another one at.
The food (in our opinions!) is terrible in the resort. We had free half board which gave us dinner or lunch in buffet restaurants, hotels and some restaurants in the parks. We found that the buffet in The Sequoia Lodge was the nicest (American themed) with a variety of foods such as chicken nuggets, fish, chips, lasagne, curry and pasta. There's also a McDonald's in Disney Village which we would have been lost without! On New Year's Eve we got fajitas in Fuente Del Oro near Thunder Mountain in the park and it was lovely too.
Download the Disneyland Paris app so you can keep an eye on ride times.

You can check out our vlogs from the trip below.