So tell me about your job….

This summer I’ve had a chance to catch up with wonderful friends and family across the country.  Everywhere I went I had folks asking about “Disney stuff” or “Magic Bound stuff” and I realized that I never did a formal intro into this wonderful part of my life.  As the first question always goes….I found out about this job just like any other – saw the opening and applied! I wanted to give you answers to questions that have come up over the summer….

And in the meantime, if you ever have questions you’d like to message me, I would love to guide you!  Planning a Disney vacation is personal and something I take seriously -my goal is to help create memories that will last a lifetime.  If you know anyone looking to plan a Disney vacation, it would be a great honor to help them with their journey as well.

So what exactly is Magic Bound Travel? Magic Bound Travel is a travel agency based out of North Carolina.  I am the agency’s Orlando based agent who works together with them to create dream vacations for my clients!

Does that mean you are an “official” travel agent? Most definitely!  You may not know this, but travel agents must be professionally certified.  In my case, my specializations are in Disney, Disney Cruise Line, Adventures by Disney, and Universal.

What can you do for me? My clients come to me with a range of requests but the most common is sharing their vision of their ideal vacation and then working with them to secure resort reservations, dining plans, and park itineraries.  Being an Orlando resident means I am able to stay on top of everything new for my clients and if there is something they would like me to check out for them, I’m able to research it and incorporate it into their vacation plans.

How much would I owe you? All of my services to my clients are absolutely free.  We are an extension of Disney and are paid by Disney; there is no cost at all to any of my clients AND our pricing and promos are exactly the same that Disney offers.  In fact, when clients book a cruise through Magic Bound, we provide onboard credits to them. Something Disney themselves does not even offer 😉

When is the best time of year to go?  The demand is such that you will get a bit more for your money any time school is in session (crowds are lower).  If you really want to get the most bang for your buck, end of August, September, and May are all great choices!  January and February are less crowded as well on non-holiday weeks.

What is your favorite part of your job? I get just as excited as my clients when their vacations are approaching.  They have poured their hearts into the plans and I’m over the moon to see their pictures when the trip finally happens.  Knowing that in any way I could have made their trip planning less stressful or more memorable is a great feeling.  I love sharing in their joy.

It seems like you are at Disney every day….  I do try to get to either the Disney parks or resorts often to stay on top of everything new – whether it be a new attraction, restaurant, or show.  Often Disney will have special announcements and items I post to my Facebook or Instagram pages will highlight what those updates are.  Whether it be the new Skyliner, Star Wars Galaxy’s Edge, renovations at Coronado Springs….changes are happening at lightening speed and I want to be able to provide the best service to my clients.

What are the best ways to save money on a Disney vacation? A few easy ones for you – planning early will save you money because there is the most availability for resorts and this is even more important for those wanting to take a Disney cruise.  A year ahead is optimal but I’ve had clients who will travel last minute when a promotion runs so it never hurts to look!  You are allowed to bring your own food and drinks into Disney parks and anyone staying at a Disney resort is allowed to access Extra Magic Hours – extra time in the parks – at no extra cost!  FastPass+, which is quick access to rides without waiting in the standard line, is something EVERY guest is entitled to.  Please please take advantage of these – they are free at Disney! You can preselect three at a time, then one at a time when those first three are used.

How can I make the most of my Disney vacation? I think the first goal would be to know your travel party.  Often Disney vacations incorporate many family members.  It’s important to have a clear idea of what a “good” vacation is – for some that may mean being at Disney parks the entire day.  For others it might be a few favorite rides, eating great meals, or listening to a concert.  Having that set from the start will tremendously help with your trip.  I also would emphasize that if you hit about 80% of your planning, consider your trip successful.  Sometimes racing across the park to get to a specific ride would mean missing a fabulous character interaction or impromptu entertainment right in front of you.  Allowing for that spontaneity will make the trip even more memorable.

Any tips for taking kids?  Taking a break when your kids are hungry or tired is enormously important.  Holding off for “a few more rides” usually does not go well.  The other thing I suggest is incorporating your kids into your vacation planning.  Disney can be overwhelming for adults!  I love having maps for my clients and their kids to look at in advance.  It gives children a sense of awareness and security.   I also clearly identify what Disney Cast Members (Disney employees) look like and that if anyone does get separated from the group, those are the people who will be able to help!

Tell me some Disney secrets! Disney World in Orlando opened in 1971…which was actually 5 years after Walt Disney passed away.  The construction of Disney World was overseen by Walt’s brother, Roy.  Disney World has only been closed for 5 days, two of which we were here for – Hurricane Matthew in 2016 and Hurricane Irma in 2017!  Mickey Mouse has over 290 costumes he can choose to wear, Minnie Mouse has around 200. Cast members use walkways called “utilidors” that are under Magic Kingdom so that they are only seen in their specific park area (ie you won’t see a cowboy from Frontierland in Tomorrowland).  Lastly, this isn’t so much a secret as good karma.  Good days happen at Disney and sometimes not so good moments.  If ever something goes wrong during your Disney visit, kindness and respect towards Cast Members will always be the best method to problem solving!

If you would like to start planning your Disney vacation, you can find me here!  For a free quote request, start here and select “Rachel Berning” on your agent request.  Have a magical day and as Walt Disney said, “To all who come to this happy place, welcome….”