Saturday 7 October 2023

USA Day 6: Disney's Coronado Springs Resort, Orlando

I extended my trip for a week and travelled at my own personal expense before returning to Singapore. I wanted to visit Orlando, home to the best theme parks in the world! For this mega theme park fan, it's a dream come true! And without kids to hold me back too! *laughs* 😂

I chose to fly via Delta Air Lines, even though I had to transit in Atlanta. I decided that the longer travelling time and higher cost was justified because the only direct flight was via a less reputable budget airline, which was very risky. The standard one-way ticket cost me US$318, excluding US$30 for 1 checked baggage.

I found out that my hotel had a complimentary shuttle service to the airport at selected times of the day! There are limited seats and it was only opened for booking 1 day before. The staff recommended for me to book the 4.15am slot, which would be in time for my 6am flight.

When I woke up at 3.45am, I discovered that my flight had been delayed to 10am! I had to rebook my connecting flight and call the front desk to reschedule my shuttle slot to 8am. Thank God I found out before I left so I could wait in the comfort of my room! However, I couldn't get back to sleep as my brain was fully awake from all the activity. 

I cheered up after eating cup noodles for breakfast and watching my church service online! 💖

I know I probably eat more cup noodles on this trip than I do a whole year in Singapore but I find it comforting in a foreign country! 😄

I decided to head to the lobby earlier and thankfully I did because the shuttle left 5 minutes before 8am! I reached Lexington Blue Grass Airport at 8.10am.

There was ample time for me to buy souvenirs at the shop before clearing security.

My flight to Atlanta finally departed Lexington at 10.10am. Thankfully, there was no one seated beside me! 😃

We were only given snacks and water as the flight was just 1 hour. I didn't have enough time to finish watching the animated movie Mummies by the time I arrived at Atlanta Airport Terminal B! 😲

I had to take the train to Terminal A where my next flight would be departing. On arrival, I realised that I was on standby and had not been assigned a seat! This freaked me out because if I can't board this flight, I would have to take the next available one, which was an hour or more later! It was pretty nerve-wrecking watching the announcement screens and checking the Delta app for updates on my seat allocation.

After the flight has completed boarding for half the passengers, the Delta app finally updated with my seat number! Hurray! I was able to board the plane at 1pm.

I finished watching Mummies during the 1.5 hour flight and finally arrived at Orlando International Airport at 2.45pm! 🥳

With tourism being Orlando's main revenue, it felt like I had arrived at a gigantic Sentosa! Most of the visitors were here on vacation and the air was filled with excitement.

My work BFF, aka 'Twin' as she shares multiple interests with me, flew to Orlando just to conquer the theme parks with me! I was very touched! 🥰 I had planned to welcome her at the departure gate but due to my flight delay, she ended up welcoming me instead! 😓

We took an Uber to our hotel, Disney's Coronado Springs Resort (cost US$45) in Walt Disney World

As one of the Disney Hotels, Coronado Springs has all the feels of a grand theme park accommodation! We also chose it because it offered the benefit of 30-minute early park entry for all Disney hotel guests and was relatively more affordable.

We left our luggage with the concierge and took an Uber to Target Supercentre (cost US$10) to buy groceries because: 1) hotels in America do not provide complimentary drinking water and 2) we wanted to cook our own food whenever we didn't feel like eating out.

We bought eggs, sliced vegetables, fruits, bread, chocolate, salad, yogurt, snacks, souvenirs and 2.5 gallons of water! On hindsight, we should have bought more water as the amount seemed like a lot but really wasn't enough!

When we were done, we searched for an Uber but the cost had almost tripled at US$27! We were too tired to find cheaper alternatives so we just booked it. I reasoned that the amount we saved from buying individual bottles of water and food would have justified the cost! 😬

I knew from my WDW research that our resort was enormous (one staff said it was larger than Magic Kingdom 😲🤯)! Hence, we requested for a buggy to bring us to our room. The buggy was complimentary but we gave our driver a tip for carrying all of our stuff and giving us a tour of the resort!

It was a good decision to get a buggy as our room was located at the opposite end of the resort! 

We had booked the Accessibility Two Queen Beds with View room at S$368 (US$256) per room per night. We were greeted with a well-decorated themed room and a personalised welcome message that assumed all guests who stay with them are family members! 😅

I love that we each got a queen bed! They were super luxurious and comfortable! 😍

Our room was accessible to wheelchair users, which meant wider pathways and a huge unobstructed barn-style bathroom door! This was great for a big klutz like me as I won't knock into or trip over anything! *laughs* 🤭

We also love the double sinks and bathtub, which was great for warm baths on a cold day! The toiletries were good but very limited and not replenished. This was a stark difference as compared to Disney Hotels in Hong Kong and Japan (see list at the end of post for reference)!

It was also my first time seeing two safes in one room, with one of them mounted in the bathroom!

The hotel also provided Disney's own unique brand of coffee and Twining's English Breakfast tea. We enjoyed the convenience of making our drinks every morning before we head to the parks.

Other amenities included an iron and a good size fridge. As mentioned previously, hotels in America do not provide toothbrushes, bathrobes and bedroom slippers.

Although our room supposedly came with a view, we didn't see much of it as we drew our curtains most of the time to prevent people from looking in. Our room was located on the ground floor you see!

I changed into my swim wear and headed to the pool for an evening swim. 

My kids would have loved this pool as there was a slide and an area with water fountains!

Life guards were also on duty to keep everyone safe. Some ducks also wandered near the pool and 'posed' for photos!

I love the hot tub! It was much easier to sleep when body is relaxed! 😎

We had cup noodles with added vegetables and eggs for dinner. I don't know about you but I prefer cup noodles to sandwiches any time! 😆

We slept early at 11am and set our alarms to wake up at 6.30am the next morning to head to the parks! We were both mega Disney fans so we couldn't wait!


P.S: Here's the full list of our experiences at Disney Hotels around the world:

Continue to >> USA Day 7: Magic Kingdom, Disney World
<< Back to USA Day 3-5: TCOM Conference & Lexington City


Visit MADPSYCHMUM TRAVELS for the rest of my posts on Lexington & Orlando, United States of America as well as other travel itineraries

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