B. How will you get there?
The next major decision to make is how will you get there. This is a very important decision because it will play a big role in the budget of your trip. If you do not live in North America, then of course, your only option is to fly. If that is the case, then the decision is made and you can skip to the next page. If you live in North America, then there are a few factors to consider when deciding how to travel to Orlando. Driving does seem to always be the less expensive option, but it may not always be feasible for everyone.
- Distance – How far of a drive is it? If you can easily do the drive in one day without having to stop overnight, then you should strongly consider driving. Your only cost will be the gas you spent to get there and one day’s worth of driving will always be less than the cost of a flight.
- Cost – The cost of flying can vary a lot depending on the time of year, where you fly from and the timing of when you book. Deals can always be found, but it does require some work and patience. For a great read on how to find the best flight deals, check out this article at Thrifty Nomads.
Once you have an idea of what flights would cost you, then put together a rough estimate of what it would cost to drive. Figure out if and where you would stop if you needed to do an overnight. Hotwire is a great site to find deals on hotels if you just need it for one night. You can also use GasBuddy’s trip calculator to estimate how much you would spend in gas for the round trip.
Once you have those two estimates, you’ll have enough information to tell you whether it is worth driving or flying.
- Feasibility – Can the group you are traveling with survive the drive without killing each other? If you are traveling with your own family, you should already have an idea of how well each of you do on road trips. If you are traveling with friends, then you may want to ask them how well they do on long drives. If the drive is going to end up being a complete nightmare, then you may want to seriously look at flying because starting and ending your trip on a bad note is not how you want to remember your magical vacation.
- Traveling Days – How many days do you want to spend traveling? If it will take you 2 days to drive to Orlando, then you need to factor in that 4 entire days of your vacation time will be spent traveling. If you only have a week off, then you may not want to spend over 50% of your time driving. That is precious time taken away from your days in Disney. Be realistic about how much time you want to dedicate to the traveling portion of your vacation and decide what is best for you.
Now we can move on to accommodations…