Originally published February 14, 2018.
Happy Valentine’s Day, friends. We asked you last week if you and your significant other see eye to eye on Disney. And Julia has the tally here. The natural follow-up is what if you’re one of the people whose travel partner doesn’t want to go to Walt Disney World?
This topic brought up some lively conversation on our blogger Slack.
First, there was the issue of the title, which was originally “Ways to Cope with your Non-Disney Significant Other.”
We had some feelings about that, starting with this one that I’ll keep anonymous:
Then Rikki won the internet:
And Joe got the Stanley Kubrick prize:
We finally landed on:
And then the crickets started chirping.
In a weak moment, I said I’d take it. So here goes!
Here are some things to try:
Not go. There’s nothing wrong with not taking the trip if half of a couple doesn’t want to. Try another destination. Try a staycation. Ask yourself, is Expedition Everest the hill I want to die on?
Go alone. Sometimes I like to spend quality time with the person whose company I enjoy most. A solo vacation can be amazing: no one to keep track of but yourself, doing only the things you want to do. If this is an option, you should try it at least once.
Go with a friend. A Disney vacation can be a great time to catch up on the other relationships in your life. And you may be able to split some costs.
Cut back on how often you go. Maybe your partner is getting tired of Disney. A good compromise would be take turns choosing your vacation plans.
Mix things up. Do you only go to the theme parks? Try some of the other offerings like the outdoor recreation at Fort Wilderness, the Disney spas, or golf. Do you always stay in the same Disney resort? Try another one – there are more than 20 onsite and countless offsite hotels for your enjoyment.
Skip the characters–at least sometimes. Your partner may not have the same love affair that you do with a certain mouse. Not every meal can, or should, be a character meal. There’s so many amazing meals to try without character interactions.
Add in some other area attractions. Universal and Sea World have amazing intense roller coasters. Kennedy Space Center appeals to adults and kids alike. Go to the beach. Taken on some of the cultural opportunities in the Orlando area.
Have a plan. You know what isn’t fun? Walking through the park gates, turning to your partner and asking “what do you want to do?” Get your FastPasses when your window opens. Know what you want to see and make a touring plan. If you can minimize your waits in line, you’ll be a vacation superhero.
Include your partner in the planning. If everyone has some say in what you do from day to day, you’re more likely to keep everyone happy.
Or not. The first rule of Disney is don’t talk about Disney.
I do this for a living and still find the endless minutia of theme parks tiresome from time to time. So if you’re taking a trip and you see eyerolls when you talk about reservation windows or dining plan credits or park rumors, just stop. Don’t wear out the vacation before it even happens. You do you, but don’t expect that anyone else cares about it. Some people will be happy enough just being along for the ride.
Be flexible. There’s nothing wrong with bailing on a plan if someone isn’t enjoying it. If you’re in the parks and it’s not fun, take a break. Enjoy a pool. Have a meal. It’s a vacation, not a contract.
Chloroform. Bribes. Battle of Wills. War of the Roses. Maybe not all ideas are good ideas after all.
We wish you many happy vacations with your significant other no matter where you go.
Got any good stories to share about traveling with the Disney-reluctant? Share them in the comments.