Saturday, September 8, 2018

Fall 2018 Theme Park Trip-plans and planning

Looking back it's been two years since my last post. Time to fix that.

Well, I have another big trip coming up and am totally ecstatic about it. I am about to get a full month off from work. I've been working to make sure there is another person in the office that knows my skills. I'm one that I'm not afraid to share everything that I know.

Travel plans include Dollywood and Pigeon Forge area attractions, going to Boston to visit family. Heading to Cedar Point to the East Coast coaster capital. Time in Florida will include Universal Orlando and Halloween Horror Nights, the Disney parks including Food and Wine Festival and Mickey's Not So Scary Halloween Party, Legoland, Florida Zipline Coaster, Star Flyer, and Fun Spots. In California the West Coast Legoland there in the San Diego area and their SeaWorld plus Belmont Park in the "extreme south" are the plans. Traveling north to Anaheim and the Disneyland resort including Mickey's Halloween Party, Knott's Berry and Scary Farms, Santa Monica Pier, Universal Hollywood, Six Flags Magic Mountain the West Coast coaster capital...possibly their Halloween event and then the Warner Bros Studio Tour and their Halloween event. So Heartland, East Coast, Mid West, the South and West Coast will be covered on this trip.  I am so appreciative that I have the ability to do this.

Along the way I plan to meet up with a number of people. Some are coaster buddies, some are Disney pals, others are college friends and some are former co-workers and podcasters. So while I may be traveling solo, I won't be doing everything as a single.

Surprisingly enough, when I was trying to make the travel arrangements, I wanted to maybe do trains between say Sandusky, OH and Knoxville, TN or Knoxville, TN and Orlando, FL as a way to see the country. Those options weren't viable due to how far away trains stations were from starting or ending points needing buses. I looked at maybe buses outright, but the amount of time and transfers were rather awkward and cumbersome. Luckily I was able to make the flight arrangements through one carrier, United, although several legs will be with code share partners. Learned that it is difficult to try to book a trip with more than five legs to the trip. All totaled, I have nine segments. The first leg I have to travel from Honolulu to Newark which is a ten hour flight and then back up to Knoxville. Blissfully the LAX to HNL flight is six hours.

In my big 2010 trip, I had business cards that I gave out for people going above and beyond in their work. Back then, I gave them a card recognizing them for their effort, took their pic, blogged about them and their actions

and then made sure I wrote back to the companies involved to give the person credit. While I don't have the cards ready to go yet, I plan on doing that again this trip. It's really easy to fall into the negative and those cards helped keep me looking for the positive.

During my fall 2016 trip, I lost my wallet while riding Mako at SeaWorld Orlando the day before I was to fly to LAX. Still haven't heard back from SeaWorld if they dredged the pond where it dropped  and recovered it with the $700 still inside. If I ever get that back, really need to make sure to make big noise about that! But with losing my ID, I want to make sure on this trip that I have backups like maybe making sure that I bring my passport and not keeping all the money on my person. Also I need to make sure that I follow my procedures and not rush when I get on a coaster to make sure that I have everything really secured.

One of the other challenges that I have is with the rental car portions. I have a valid drivers license, but don't own a car in Hawaii. When I rent I must do the responsible action have have some insurance and the costs add up quickly. So the RAC company would look at say Friday noon to Monday 6am as just three days, the insurance company says it's four so on those transfer days, I'm having to pay for insurance twice. Plus the insurance itself isn't cheap with charges that have been 15-25% of the daily rental rate.  But, it's something that I have to do since I don't have my own policy.

I use Flickr instead of Instagram. When I would post to Flickr, it would automatically post to Twitter and then a bit later to Facebook. Something has happened to the interface and that no longer happens.  If you want to see pics during the trip, goto For quick updates I'm @coconutwireless on twitter.

If you have comments or questions, let me know. The fall 2018 Coaster Trip begins on September 20th!