Disneyland Paris 2013- An American CM in Paris

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Soarin08
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Disneyland Paris 2013- An American CM in Paris

Post by Soarin08 » Jan Mon 14, 2013 10:57 pm

Hey everyone!

I figured I would make up for my lack of posts by giving you the Disneyland Resort Paris 2013 trip report you all deserve! Please note some aspects of this report are private and will not be posted about (HINT HINT) and I will be posting my pics and giving my insights into DLP's 20th-going-on-21st year of operation as well as my observances as an American cast member.

A little word about the airline first.

I booked via STA Travel, which Mr Brit directed me to do, as they work with students, teachers, and anyone under 26. Some of you may recall my booking was $900 round trip and my airline was Air Canada, which was new. I've only done Delta (insert disgusted gagging to even have to mention those animal abusing fools) and Southwest, and considering how I am spoiled by Southwest, a new airline was a concern.

But my travel agent did well. Shoutout to Peter at STA for being thorough, prompt, and checking up on my flight details right up to the final moment. He will be my agent again next time I go overseas (more on that later). And if anyone with kids/grand kids/nieces and nephews who are students or under 26, I recommend they use this site even for domestic travel.

I had to connect in Canada twice- first in Montreal and then on the way home in Toronto. I liked Toronto WAY better.

The flight from Orlando to Montreal on 10 January was perfect. I even flew over WDW and my old CP housing PLUS the ever-popular "CP Walmart" that I always used to go to for groceries. Also was very neat to see the Space Coast from above. I love how Air Canada has a billion selections for in-flight entertainment. I didn't utilise that on my first piece to Montreal, but I did once we were over the Atlantic.

First flight- 3 hours. Customs in Montreal was easy enough, since I had nothing to declare but myself. I felt weird in their airport, as this was my first exposure to an environment where the people do not speak English as the primary language, but there were signs in both languages so I did fine with my limited French and my English combined. I had a three hour layover and the wifi was free, so I texted with my sister and worked on some of my creative writing projects as well as popping on Facebook.

The next piece left bound for Paris Charles de Gaulle at 7.45pm, seven hours of flight ahead of us. I had a very nice seat mate however, from Cuba, and we enjoyed pleasant chatting at intervals through the flight. I was glad they served a full meal, and you know, airplane food isn't bad. We had chicken with couscous in a sort of sweet and sour sauce, an Italian pasta salad, chocolate mousse, and then ANYTHING we wanted to drink, so being that NO ONE cards on flights it seems, I had white wine and loved it.

I tried to sleep and slept maybe two hours, but three screaming babies kept the majority of us up, the flight was already 45 minute late leaving so that tension didn't help me sleep as it was. I ended up browsing my movie répertoire and selected an old favourite, Sleepless in Seattle, followed by a favourite of mine and my high school best friend, albeit a controversial choice- Rocky Horror Picture Show.

Next up- arrival and off to DLP, another new experience that I conquered with ease!
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Re: Disneyland Paris 2013- An American CM in Paris

Post by Amy » Jan Tue 15, 2013 8:08 am

Wow ~ sounds like you ended up getting a great deal on airfare! Isn't it fun seeing familiar places from up in the air. F1gment pretty much stares out the window and treats the airplane ride as the first "attraction" on vacation :lol:
Airplane food can be quite good. The no-carding thing must just be international, as all the domestic flights I have been on card every time someone orders a drink.
Too bad about the screaming children, but at least you got a few hours of sleep. The first time I flew overseas I was awake the entire time and quite miserable once I landed in London :(
Looking forward to the photos ~ and seeing what else you got to experience outside of DLP :D

Soarin08
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Re: Disneyland Paris 2013- An American CM in Paris

Post by Soarin08 » Jan Tue 15, 2013 8:34 am

I'm guessing since most of the drinking ages overseas are set at 18, no one wanted to card. Plus the vast majority of people on our flights were adults.

I know I'll getting ahead of myself but trip two is already materialising (YES I MEAN IT) but that's jumping the gun a bit.

I am downloading my pics to my computer later so be patient!
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Re: Disneyland Paris 2013- An American CM in Paris

Post by cy1229 » Jan Tue 15, 2013 8:52 am

Love that you had a good time, eagerly awaiting pictures!
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Re: Disneyland Paris 2013- An American CM in Paris

Post by theBIGyowski » Jan Tue 15, 2013 12:46 pm

I'm very excited to read this trip report!

I went to Europe back in 2000...and the flights there and back were a bit long. The flight back was probably the tough one...as it made us end up with close to 21 hours of sunlight due to us going back 6 hours from Switzerland to Memphis.

I've taken a few virtual strolls through DLP via Google Earth...hoping to go there in person at some point in the future. If you can dream it...you can do it...right?
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2008: Shades of Green / Saratoga Springs (WDW Half Marathon)
2009: Port Orleans French Quarter (WDW Half Marathon)
2010: Port Orleans Riverside (Honeymoon)
2011: Old Key West / Bay Lake Tower
2014: Kidani Village
2015: Old Key West (5th Wedding Anniversary)
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Re: Disneyland Paris 2013- An American CM in Paris

Post by yodiwan1 » Jan Tue 15, 2013 1:38 pm

sounds great so far! looking forward to hearing more! Welcome home!
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JenMuse
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Re: Disneyland Paris 2013- An American CM in Paris

Post by JenMuse » Jan Tue 15, 2013 5:18 pm

Can't wait to read more. :) The one time I flew to London, I was in business class from LAX to JFK and then from JFK to Heathrow so I slept with great ease.

I've long wanted to see DLP so you must describe it in rich detail ala Dickens, except we won't be paying you be the word. :)
  • 1980-93: Fort Wilderness
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Re: Disneyland Paris 2013- An American CM in Paris

Post by MmeLeota » Jan Wed 16, 2013 9:59 am

Sounds like the trip there was pretty smooth...the closest we've been to flying overseas is going to Hawaii and that was rough...but it also included an 8 hour layover in LAX. :shock:

We cannot wait to see pictures and hear more about your amazing adventure!!! :D

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Re: Disneyland Paris 2013- An American CM in Paris

Post by Soarin08 » Jan Wed 16, 2013 12:20 pm

Part Deux! :mrgreen:

We arrived in Paris almost an hour and a half late thanks to the previous evening's delay as well as severe turbulence that caused quite a rocky leg over England and Ireland (I can't believe I get to say that, England and Ireland!!!!). I had studied up on Paris transportation and had heard two opinions- Guy, my lovely French coworker, told me to take the RER B, and my ever-loyal Mr Brit said the TGV. After seeing that the RER required a transfer and the TGV went straight to Marne la Vallée in ten minutes flat, I took my Englishman's advice and went for the TGV.

I didn't know exactly where the train station at CDG was, but thankfully, my guide came in the form of Ben from Ottawa, who I had met at baggage claim. Ben and I chatted for quite awhile on our hike to the station, and I learned he was on a year-long exchange program in Paris to study French, and he asked a ton of Disney questions as well. He got me to the ticketing office before we parted company, and once there, I used my French to ask "Parlez-vous anglais?" before launching into ANYTHING. I made a point the WHOLE time to politely ask that question and everyone was more than willing to speak English.

The cashier booked me on the next train to the Marne la Vallée-Chessy station, leaving in about half an hour, and I went down to wait for it. And promptly at 11.58, in it came-

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And the ticket-

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Car 16, seat 22.

For those who don't know, the TGV is a high-speed train system similar to the famed Japanese "bullet train" that transports at a speed of around 200mph. Based on this, I arrived at the entrance to DLP in a mere nine minutes. My seat was by the window, and I got to watch the French countryside zoom by as we travelled north. There wasn't any snow, which surprised me, since it was at least 30 degrees Fahrenheit out, but it wouldn't stay snow-free for long!

Once I arrived, all I had to do was drag my bag up the stairs and outside- sounds simple, right? Wrong! That sucker was HEAVY! A lady, when she saw my struggle, pick up the base of my bag and between the two of us, we made it. All we exchanged was a simple "Merci" but it made me see that perhaps the opinions the Americans tend to give about the French- and the opposite- are just that, opinions.

BOOM, the entrance is there. And everything is within walking distance. Well except their version of Ft Wilderness, Davy Crockett Ranch or something like that. You may recall I was at Hotel Cheyenne, and it was GREAT. Getting to it though.

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I really like their security bag check. It is done via x-ray very much like airport security and they also screen at Disney Village, which DTD could be inclined to do as well. No digging through bags, none of that mess- just drop the bag on the conveyor belt, watch it get run through the scanner, and off you go. It took all of thirty seconds and was a breeze. Even had big ones for suitcases for people coming from the train station and the VEA, which is the Val l'Europe airport shuttle like the DME.

It was about a fifteen minute walk from Disney Village to Hotel Cheyenne, at the back edge of property, which was a pleasant walk. I made it to the front desk easily and was checked in and ready to go to my room in about ten minutes.

I was in building 21, named for Jesse James. Each building is named for a famous person or place in American Western history, as the theming of the Cheyenne kept with that storyline. The French seem to find the American West fascinating- does anyone know why? Room #2155, which was upstairs. There are no RFID chip entries yet, standard old fashioned keys, and once inside, I tossed the bags to the side and started snapping pics-

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Wallpaper detailing-

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And some of the ambient lighting-

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Building name-

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And the surrounding resort grounds-

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I changed clothes and unpacked, immediately heading off for Walt Disney Studios Park. Next post!!
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cy1229
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Re: Disneyland Paris 2013- An American CM in Paris

Post by cy1229 » Jan Wed 16, 2013 1:10 pm

Hah! I didn't know the French were so fascinated by the Old West. What a hoot! It's interesting to see which things have translated into another culture and which have not. :)

Your room looks a little cramped between the beds. Is it? If I was traveling with my kids, I'm not too sure I'd want them RIGHTTHERENEXTTOMESOVERYCLOSE. It's probably one of the many differences between Americans and Europeans.

Looking forward to more posts!
Polynesian 1980
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Saratoga Springs 2010
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Re: Disneyland Paris 2013- An American CM in Paris

Post by theBIGyowski » Jan Wed 16, 2013 1:14 pm

Such a cool resort!

Speaking of the Old West...DLP has a much more elaborate Frontierland don't they?
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1986: Offsite
1997: Offsite
2001: Coronado Springs
2008: Shades of Green / Saratoga Springs (WDW Half Marathon)
2009: Port Orleans French Quarter (WDW Half Marathon)
2010: Port Orleans Riverside (Honeymoon)
2011: Old Key West / Bay Lake Tower
2014: Kidani Village
2015: Old Key West (5th Wedding Anniversary)
2016: Old Key West (Kids' first WDW vacation in December!)

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Re: Disneyland Paris 2013- An American CM in Paris

Post by JenMuse » Jan Wed 16, 2013 1:18 pm

Yeehaw!
  • 1980-93: Fort Wilderness
    1996: All-Stars Movie
    1999: rented a private home
    2008: Hilton Grand Vacation Club at International Drive (HGVC)
    2009: All-Stars Music & Pop Century
    2010: HGVC at I-Drive
    2011: Anaheim Hilton (DisneyLand)
    2012: HGVC at I-Drive & Caribbean Beach Resort
    2013: HGVC-Parc Soleil & Port Orleans Riverside AND Anaheim Hilton
    2015: Old Key West & Saratoga Springs

Soarin08
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Re: Disneyland Paris 2013- An American CM in Paris

Post by Soarin08 » Jan Wed 16, 2013 1:23 pm

Maybe 3 feet? I wasn't paying much attention. I didn't use the bunks for anything but storage. :lol:

Their Frontierland is entirely more of an actual Old West theme than ours are.
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Re: Disneyland Paris 2013- An American CM in Paris

Post by mindflipper » Jan Wed 16, 2013 1:50 pm

I'm impressed with the price of the ticket. It doesn't seem to have gone up that much really from when I was there back in the 90's...

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Re: Disneyland Paris 2013- An American CM in Paris

Post by Amy » Jan Wed 16, 2013 2:01 pm

Fun ~ I remember being quite surprised at how close the train station was to the entrance of DLP!
Are those buildings on the resort grounds the back of the hotel buildings or simply facades?

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