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Resorts of Atlantis Bahamas

If you are looking for tons of family fun, take a look at Atlantis Resort in the Bahamas. Atlantis Resort offers a huge water park, aquarium, casino (for the grown-ups!), amazing restaurants and pools, pools and more pools! And of course, let’s not forget the amazing beaches in the Bahamas. 

What you might not realize about Atlantas Resort is that there are actually 6 different hotels that you can choose from. Check it out!

The Royal

The Royal is the icon of Atlantis! From the artwork to the experiences, a stay at The Royal is larger than life, with intimate proximity to the world’s largest open air marine habitat situated at its center and the famed Atlantis casino by its side.

The Cove

The Cove is elegantly situated between Cove and Paradise Beaches creating the feeling of being cast away on a private, white-sand sanctuary. The luxury property was designed by architect Jeffrey Beers to bring high design together with the bluest ocean and mother of pearl hued sand. The result is an open air lobby that rises and sets with the day, an exclusive pool that sits between two private beaches, stunning and sensual rooms and suites, a collection of unparalleled dining and purposeful service delivered with Bahamian warmth.

The Reef

The Reef offers the conveniences of home and the amenities of a luxury residential community. Adjacent to The Cove, The Reef rests upon the white sand beaches of Paradise Island with the gracious relaxation of the Bahamian culture. The Reef welcomes guests to unplug completely or plug in to all Atlantis has to offer. Residences at The Reef run from stunning studios to three bedroom suites with kitchenette or full kitchens, and magnificent ocean views.

Harbourside

Enjoy both spaciousness and simple charm in the comfortable villas of Harborside Resort. Ideally suited for families or groups of up to nine people, Harborside’s villas feel like having your very own island home, right in the center of all the fun.

The Coral

From top to bottom, discover newly designed rooms, a spectacular new pool and cabanas, and a stunning lobby lounge punctuated with Sun & Ice, a Bahamian pastry, coffee, ice cream and gelato parlour. Cocktails poured in the evenings lead to a night at the Atlantis casino, dining in one of our incredible restaurants, or a chance to explore Marina Village, with entertainment, shopping and dining by some of the most beautiful yachts in the world.

The Beach

Barefoot and carefree, The Beach at Atlantis is literally all about the beach itself. Perfect for value- minded guests seeking a casual and tropical, relaxed ambience steps away from Atlantis Beach, the Beach experience does not include room service, but does offer the amenities of Atlantis within easy reach. For a more full-service experience, including room service, we recommend a stay at The Coral or The Royal.

Contact your Must Love Travel Planner today for more information and to book your next vacation!

Atrium Club at Disney’s Contemporary Resort

It doesn’t get much better….step off the Magical Express, find the Club Cast Member waiting for you in the Lobby. Get whisked away to the Private Check in, offered a complimentary drink and tour the Lounge, where there is amazing food and beverages available all day long. It’s like the icing on an already beautiful Disney cake.

For my last trip we chose a Theme Park view room, which offered incredible views of the Magic Kingdom and the Seven Seas Lagoon. It was absolute Perfection. We spent hours sitting on our balcony, watching the Monorail, boats and had a front row view of the Fireworks. And the coolest part of the Fireworks? Disney plays the music on your TV, which makes the experience even better.

Club Lounge

As a Club Level guest, you will have access to an exclusive Club Level Lounge, offering a variety of complimentary daily refreshments, like:

  • Continental breakfast
  • Hot samples from Resort restaurants
  • Evening wine and beer selections
  • Desserts and cordials 

Disney’s Signature Services

You will have access to Disney’s Signature Services team who are available to help you plan vacation experiences that are custom-tailored to your travel party’s unique interests.

  • Plan and schedule Enchanting Extras, like Disney VIP Tours, nature experiences, specialty dining offerings, dessert parties and more
  • Create and plan in-room celebrations and gifts
  • Make dining reservations
  • Order specialty cakes to enhance your Disney dining experience

Additional Club Level benefits include:

  • Evening Turndown
  • Complimentary newspapers in Club Level lounge
  • Complimentary health club access

Talk to your Must Love Travel Planner about booking a Club Room on your next Disney World vacation!

Disney Cruise Line: The Pools

Everything you need to know about Disney cruise ships pools!

Family Pools 

Every Disney ship offers a family pool, which is located mid-ship and has a HUGE movie screen playing Disney Movies all day and all night long. You will also find splash areas for the Little’s, and lots of quick service dining options.

Only children who are fully potty trained are allowed in the pool. Children wearing swim diapers are welcome to use the splash areas. Disney is very strict with this!

Water Slides 

Every Disney ship offers some sort of water slide. The larger ships, Disney Dream and Disney Fantasy, offer a water coaster called Aqua Duck that whips you around the top of the ship. Disney Magic and Disney Wonder have a water slide called Aqua Dunk, with a free-fall plunge into a slide.

Adult Only

Every Disney ship offers an Adult only pool deck, complete with it’s own bar, hot tubs and even an adult only coffee shop. Disney is incredibly strict with keeping this an Adult Only space, and I personally find it to be one of my more favorite places on the planet!

Are you interested in booking your own Disney Cruise? Contact your Must Love Travel Planner today!

Travel Agent Tips: Sneaking into Epcot

This little hack will not only save you time, but you’ll have the opportunity to experience something extra special along the way.

Getting into Epcot is easy. But getting into the World Showcase can take some time. Walking. Lots and lots of walking. First you have to walk from the bus (or monorail) into Epcot’s Future World. Then walk through the park. Then enter the World Showcase. Now, what if you’re heading to Morocco…you have to walk through Canada, then United Kingdom, then France….you get it, it’s a long walk.

So what if I told you there was a “back door” to Epcot? A special, small entrance located between the United Kingdom and France. That’s right, this “International Gateway” drops you directly in the middle of the World Showcase.

If you are staying at one of the Resorts on the brand new Disney Skyliner system, you will have easy access to the International Gateway. The Skyliner Resorts are currently Disney’s Art of Animation, Disney’s Pop Century, Disney’s Riviera and Disney’s Caribbean Beach Resorts.

If you are not staying at one of these Skyliner Resorts, there are 2 very easy ways to get there. Take either a Lyft/Uber or Minnie Van from your current spot to one of two Resorts – Disney’s Beach Club or Disney’s Boardwalk Inn. If you are in a rush, I recommend Disney’s Beach Club Resort as it is a few steps closer (yes, I’ve counted) and will save you some time.

But if you have some time to kill, go via Disney’s Boardwalk Inn. This is a GREAT Resort, with tons of dining and shopping to check out along the way. From the Boardwalk Inn, you can either walk into Epcot, or enjoy a ride on the Water Taxi that brings you right to the park’s entrance.

This plan will cost you a few dollars, so if you are watching your budget, go with a Lyft/Uber over a Minnie Van. But if you are in the mood to splurge, a Minnie Van is a delightful addition to your experience.

Jamaica: Club Mobay

International Travel is stressful! There’s no way around it. But if you are traveling to Jamaica, you are in for some good news….there is an amazing VIP service available at the airport in Montego Bay, Jamaica called Club Mobay. There is a similar service available at the Kingston airport called Club Kingston, also amazing!

I highly recommend purchasing round trip VIP services, as they are super helpful on both your arrival and departure days.

On Arrival Day, you will be met immediately after departing your plane by a Club Mobay representative to wisk you through the Immigration process, Not only will this save you time, but you will feel like an absolute VIP! Once through Immigration, you will be brought to the Club Mobay lounge, with air conditioning, free wifi, food and drinks and clean bathrooms! You can wait in the lounge until it is time to depart on your transfer.

On Departure Day, you will first fast-track through security with VIP access. Once through security, you can wait in the Club Mobay lounge, with all those great amenities like air conditioning, free wifi, food and drinks and clean bathrooms, until it is time to depart on your flight. It is a lovely experience! 

Club Mobay costs are below. Talk to your Must Love Travel Planner about adding this VIP service to your next Jamaica vacation!

RATES

VIP Meet & Greet Arrival Service

$50 per adult, $25 per child (2-12 years old) , Free for infant (under 2)

Departure Service

$30 per adult, $20 per child (2-12 years old) , Free for infant (under 2)

Bundle Service

$80 per adult, $40 per child (2-12 years old) , Free for infant (under 2)

Norwegian Cruise Lines: Free at Sea

Norwegian Cruise Lines is currently offering an amazing promotion called Free At Sea! Depending on your stateroom category, you can choose up to FIVE free offers. Here’s how it works…

Book a Studio or Inside Cabin – choose ONE free offer.

Book an Oceanview Cabin – choose TWO free offers.

Book a Balcony or above (Suite, Haven, etc) – choose ALL FIVE free offers!

The free offers available are listed below. This is an amazing deal – contact your Must Love Travel Planner today for more information and a free quote!

Free At Sea offers available:

Free Open Bar

Norwegian's Free at Sea

Wine with dinner, umbrella drinks poolside, evening cocktails, morning mimosas. With Free Open Bar, you’ll enjoy all the spirits and cocktails, wines, draft beer, juice and soda. Savings of up to $1,400.

Free Specialty Dining

Norwegian's Free at Sea

Take your taste buds on a trip without setting foot on land with Free Specialty Dining. Savor a Dining Package with up to 5 free meals for Guests 1 & 2 at our Specialty Dining venues. Savings of up to $198.

Free Excursions

Norwegian's Free at Sea

Dogsledding in Alaska? Sure. How about snorkeling in Belize? You got it. Explore more of the shore with a Free $50 Shore Excursion Credit per port. Savings of up to $200.

Free Wifi

Norwegian's Free at Sea

Stay connected with friends and family back home, and share vacation moments as they happen with Free WiFi. Post, tweet, pin and more with an Internet Package you can use anywhere on the ship. Savings of up to $130.

Free Kids

Norwegian's Free at Sea

Bring your loved ones along for the cruise of a lifetime – for free. With Free Kids, your third and fourth guests (both the young and young at heart) enjoy complimentary cruise fares on select cruises. Savings of up to $1,000.

Extra expenses on a Disney Cruise

I often find myself saying some version of “it’s easier to explain what you CAN’T do than what you can”…and for a Disney cruise, so much is included with your cruise fare, it is absolutely easier to tell you what is NOT included, so you can plan your spending money. If you’d like to see all that IS included in your cruise fare, check out Disney Cruise Line: All That’s Included!

Keep in mind, Disney tends to be a lot more inclusive than other Family cruise lines. So these exclusions are specific to Disney ships. You’ll find additional “extras” on other cruise lines.

Gratuities

You are expected to pay a certain amount in gratuities for your stateroom steward and dining room waitstaff. This is a set amount, and it is based on the number of guests and the number of nights. You do have the option to pre-pay your gratuities, or they will be automatically added to your stateroom account at the end of the voyage. Currently, Disney’s standard gratuity is $13.50 per person, per night.

You will also be charged automatic gratuities for things like alcohol, room service and spa treatments. You do have the option to add additional gratuities if you feel they are due. Of course, if you don’t order any alcohol, room service or visit the spa, you wouldn’t see any of these charges.

Beer, Wine & Liquor

Speaking of alcohol….totally not included!! So plan for that. There are lots of onboard specials, such as “drink of the day”, and beer and wine packages that are available for purchase. But alcoholic beverages are not included with your cruise fare, and Disney currently does not offer any official “Beverage Packages” that you’d find on other cruise lines.

Spa Treatments

Spa treatments and spa day passes will be an additional charge, which is completely standard among similar cruise lines.

Excursions/Port Adventures

Anything that you book for your time in the different Ports of Call will be an additional cost. You can prebook these experiences, or book them once you’ve boarded the ship. They will be charged to your stateroom account.

Popcorn/Candy

I know, it’s so crazy, because soooo much food is included. But if you want to buy popcorn or candy at the movie theater or evening theater, you are going to have to pay for it!

Upscale Adult Dining

Brunch and Dinner at Palo & Remy, Disney’s upscale Adult restaurants, will be an additional cost. Currently, brunch and dinner at Palo is $30 per person, and Remy is $75 for brunch, and $125 for dinner.

Shopping

All of the stores onboard any Disney ship is going to cost you real money. Disney actually doesn’t have a ton of stores, compared to other cruise lines. You’ll find a few Disney-style stores, a couple of upscale options on the larger ships, and that’s about it!

Wifi

Although Disney does offer a very small amount of wifi for free if you download the app on Day 1, it’s minimal. For the most part, you are going to pay a premium to have wifi on the ship. Now, keep in mind, that lots of people use cruising as an excuse to “unplug”, and you’ll also have lot of opportunity for free wifi at the different ports of call.

I’m sure there is something I’ve forgotten, but honestly, it sounds like a whole lot more than it is. My very first Disney cruise was a 5-night Western Caribbean cruise on the Disney Magic, and I spent a total of $125 for the whole week. (Don’t ask me what I spent of my last cruise…ugh!)

Why I bought the less expensive suitcase

Yes, that’s right…I’m about to convince you to buy the less expensive suitcase. Actually, I’m not going to try to convince you to buy any particular suitcase. I’m just going to explain what sort of questions you need to ask yourself in order to make the best decision for you.

A good suitcase will make your travel days seem seamless. A bad suitcase will cause a lot of stress, sweat and swearing. So it’s important to understand the different types, and which is best for you.

Size

Bigger isn’t always better. The bigger the suitcase, the heavier it will be. You’ll most likely have to check a large suitcase, and it will need to be 50 pounds or less. But, the thing about those huge suitcases, is that they fit a whole lot more than 50 pounds. You’ll need to either be very mindful when packing, or invest in a small digital luggage scale to easily weigh your bags to make sure they are underweight. Or, be prepared to pay oversized baggage fees.

On the flip side, if a suitcase is too small, it’s useless. Remember – and this is crazy true – you always come home from vacation with more stuff than you originally brought with you! So be prepared for that!

Hard vs. Soft Shelled

This is where I messed up! I always had this idea that hard-shelled bags were just “better”. So we bought a whole 3-piece set of hard-shelled luggage, and guess what….my wife LOVES it, she feels that her stuff is just better protected. And I HATED it, I found it too clunky. So after recently investing in the 3-piece hard-shelled set, I decided that I would only replace my carry-on sized suitcase, since I use that size the most with my work trips.

Wheels

Super important are the WHEELS! You want to make sure that the wheels on your suitcase spin all the way around. Simply being able to drag a suitcase behind you is a thing of the past. Now your suitcase should practically walk with you.

Price

 
It would be great to always say “You get what you pay for” and encourage you to buy the most expensive luggage set on the market. But for most of us, we need to find ways to save money. I mean, would you rather put that money towards your suitcase, or your plane ticket? Right?! So here is my advice….get a good, reliable brand. Don’t worry as much about the price tag, as long as there is a good return policy. You can find some great, reliable luggage at your local Department Stores or on plenty of online sites (you know, Amazon and similar).

#TravelOften, friends!

Sneaking Selfies in Key West

On a recent cruise, I was so excited to spend a port day in Key West, Florida. We took the pretty walk from the ship to breakfast, and then a bunch of us walked to the “Southernmost point of the US”. I’ve been to Key West before, but we’d never hit this landmark.

When I got there, there was a loooooong line of people waiting to take a picture. You know, that famous shot standing next to the giant buoy. I mean, I was happy to be there, it was a beautiful day, I was with all my Travel Agent buddies. But I did not want to stand in a long line just to take a picture.

While we were all standing around, and a few of my friends got in line, I sat down on a bench and realized that if I timed it just right, between tourists, I could totally steal a selfie with the buoy. I seriously felt so freakin’ smart! My friends all ran over to steal selfies, too. We finished up, and walked back into town.

You don’t always have to wait in long lines to make a memory. #traveloften

Palace Resorts offer FREE Resort Credit to spend on your vacation!

Did you know….Palace Resorts offer FREE Resort Credit to spend on your vacation!

Even though All-Inclusive Resorts seem like they would include everything, there are still some extra costs, for example…spa treatments, golf, tours and other above-the-ordinary experiences. But Palace Resorts gives you FREE Resort Credit to spend on these things!

The amount of your Resort Credit is determined by how many nights you stay. Stay longer, you get more money to play with! You can get anywhere from $500 for shorter stays, all the way up to $2500 for 12 nights or longer!

You’ll find Palace Resorts located throughout Cancun, Cozumel, Jamaica, Isla Mujeres, Playa del Carmen and Los Cabos.

Contact your Must Love Travel Planner TODAY for more info!

Getting ready for your vacation: Making Lists!

Do you enjoy the anticipation of planning a vacation? I love it. I LIVE for it. In fact, I’ve made a career out of it!

My favorite time is 3 weeks before the vacation begins, which is when I like to get organized with 3 lists:

  1. Buy
  2. Do
  3. Pack

 

To Buy

This includes items that you don’t normally keep in your house, such as cooling towels if you are visiting a hot region, ponchos & rain gear or travel-size toiletries.  Maybe you need a new memory card for your camera…add it to the list!

To Do

This is some of my favorite pre-vacation traditions, such as getting a pedicure or getting a hair cut. It can also include very important things, like getting vaccines if you are traveling to parts of the world that require them.

To Pack

Basically, everything on the “Buy” list gets added to the “Pack” list. This is your ultimate list, so don’t forget the really important stuff, like Passports/Visas, airline tickets, medicine, and of course don’t forget your sunscreen!

I like to leave the lists on my kitchen table, so as I’m thinking of things I can jot them down. If you work outside of your house, maybe keep them in a file on your computer or iPhone so you can access it easily. I’ve found that creating a shared google doc is great for couples or groups planning a trip together!

What kind of lists do you make before a vacation? How do you stay organized?

Disney Cruise Line: All that’s Included!

Disney includes so much with your cruise fare! It is actually easier to list what is NOT included, because so much is covered. But here is a list of what IS included with your cruise fare.

Staterooms offer split bath, daily and evening turndown service, and tons of storage space. And don’t forget about the nightly “towelgami” left by your stateroom steward.

“Towelgami”

Although it’s common to have meals included with a cruise, Disney definitely offers more than other cruise lines. With unique rotational dining at upscale table service restaurants, buffets, room service and poolside quick service options, there is something for everyone. And don’t forget about the complimentary soda, coffee, ice cream and snacks available all day long.

The Entertainment on Disney ships is incredible! There is a movie theater that plays first run Disney movies, a nighttime theater with broadway style musicals, deck parties and more! Adults have their own space at the Adult Only pool, and the kids get unlimited entertainment in the Children’s Activity Clubs.

Contact your Must Love Travel Planner TODAY to book your next Disney Cruise!

Disney Cruise Line: Rotational Dining

Disney Cruise Lines has some of the coolest, highly themed and FUN restaurants at sea. You don’t need to make a reservation, as you will be “rotated” throughout the different dining rooms each night of your cruise for dinner.

But what really sets this experience apart is that your Dining Staff & Servers rotate with you each night! That means that your servers really get to know you and your family throughout your cruise. If you have any special dietary restrictions, or even simple likes and dislikes, your servers will make sure everything is perfect each night. All the little details are covered. For example, if you purchase a bottle of wine with dinner, but don’t finish it….no need to worry, your bottle will magically show up wherever you are!

Our amazing servers on the Disney Fantasy!

Rotational Dining is unique to Disney Cruise Lines, and guests have been enjoying this special service for years now. In fact, many guests talk about how dinner time is one of the best times of the day, because the restaurants are so unique and the servers so spectacular.

Talk to YOUR Must Love Travel Planner today for more information and to book your next Disney Cruise!

 

Top 3 Cruise Lines for Families

There are soooo many different cruise lines out there, that go all over the world on all sorts of different types of ships. It’s hard to narrow down the best option for your family.

If “Family” is what you are looking for, I’ve broken down my top 3 Cruise Lines designed for fun with your kids, and even multi-generational groups.

1. DISNEY CRUISE LINES

Disney Cruise Lines is undoubtedly the best cruise line for families, not only in the Caribbean but all over the world! Disney offers something for everyone, but of course a heavy emphasis is not only on the kids, but also with all of their family experiences that you can enjoy together. There are family activities, character meet & greets, incredible dining experiences, shows and parties happening all day and all night long!

2. ROYAL CARIBBEAN CRUISE LINES

Royal Caribbean is a very close 2nd to Disney, in my humble opinion. Royal’s beautiful ships offer TONS of activities for the kids, with some really cool water slides and onboard activities that you won’t find anywhere else. And to top is off, if you sail to the Caribbean, you’ll most likely stop at Coco Cay, Royal’s private island in the Bahamas. With a HUGE water park and tons of activities, this is the most spectacular private island I’ve ever seen. If you are looking for a solid, ultra family friendly cruising experience, you can’t beat Royal Caribbean.

3. NORWEGIAN CRUISE LINES

Norwegian Cruise Lines has some of the coolest new ships at sea! The brand new Norwegian Encore has a full race track on the top deck, virtual reality and laser tag, just to name a few. The entertainment on these ships is spectacular, it’s like taking your family to a broadway show every night in the Main Theater. And with some really spectacular new water slides and water coasters, you’ll have a hard time believing you are on a ship in the middle of the ocean!

Talk to YOUR Must Love Travel Planner today to find the right Family Cruise for you!

Islands Routes: Caribbean Adventures

If you have been to any Sandals and Beaches Resort in the Caribbean, you’ll notice they only use ONE tour company for all of their excursions – Island Routes!

Island Routes has an incredible reputation, being known for their award winning tours and local guides. You will find Island Routes on 12 different Caribbean islands, offering more than 500 different tour experiences.

Some of the more popular experiences would be the different Catamaran adventures offered, all with amazing service and staffed with Island Routes specialists who make each experience extra special. Pretty much anything you are looking to do is available with Island Routes, from swimming with the Pigs in the Bahamas, to driving an Island Buggy, snorkeling, hiking, local tours and more.

I recently took an Island Routes Catamaran excurison at Beaches Turks & Caicos. There was food, drinks, a DJ…it was a party at sea! We even saw dolphins swimming along the Catamaran with us! It was a really special way to spend an afternoon in the Caribbean.

Talk to YOUR Must Love Travel Planner about all of the different excursions available with Island Routes!

 

 

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