Monday, September 17, 2012

First Time Fun!!

First Time Fun!!

Over the weekend I had the pleasure of picking up an online family of friends at the airport and taking them to Disneyland for the day. The online friends became close and dear friends for life. This will be a day I remember for a lifetime. It is such a joy to take people to the park for the first time and play tour guide! This family knows Disney as they do WDW often and have done four Disney Cruises. But, they had never done the Disneyland Resort before.

I will forever remember hearing the little 8 year old boy laugh and squeal when he saw Cars Land for the first time! Watching the teen daughter light up looking at pins and just laughing with her parents warmed my heart!

Showing first timers around the park is a special thing. Even if you have been to the park a hundred days and can quote the lines of most, if not every ride and show taking someone that has never been before is a good way to rekindle your enjoyment. Yes, going 2-5 days every month you can fall into a routine and the “Magic” gets faded.

If you are a Disney Park pro and go often here are so things to think about when taking others to the park, especially first timers or those that have not been in a long time.
1.     Step back and watch the people you bring. Enjoy the “moments”.
2.    Let the newbie pick the rides, help by giving descriptions and  maybe suggesting rides/shows you know they may enjoy BUT let them choose.
3.    Before going talk to them about expectations and must does. Are they more into shows or rides? Maybe they wish to shop! Are they into pin trading?
4.    Find out limitations. Do they have physical or other limitations that a Guest Assistance Pass would help with? Are they allergic too or just hate a particular type of food?
5.    Try to group attractions by area so you can help them do more in the time they have.
6.    Offer to sit and save spots for a show and let them go off and catch a ride or meal while you help get that “magic spot” for the show, parade or fireworks.
7.    Think outside of the box when suggesting things to do. I often suggest the smaller, lesser known shows and rides. People often skip them and/or don’t know they are there.
8.    Be a vacillator. Help make ADRs, go get Fastpasses and hold spots for shows, parade or even in line while they do other things like shopping, eating or even riding another ride.
9.    If your newbie has questions you don’t have the answer for find out! Check out the Disney websites for answers. No answer there, send them an e-mail. You can also ask your fellow Disney Fans on one of the hundreds of Disney Fan Sites. Pick your favorite(s) and ask away! Feel free to ask me! If I don’t know I’ll try to find out or at least point you in the right direction to find the answer. There are also many good books.

You cannot believe how much fun it is to watch a newbie experience your favorite ride/show/attraction! Especially if they are a young children in the group.

Rides and shows that you have given up on and don’t ride anymore because you have done it so often can become exciting when seen again through the eyes of a first time rider. Often when I’m riding a ride that is becoming ‘dull’ to me I quit looking at the ride and look around at the guests. I end up focusing on the newbies and enjoy watching their expressions and the light of joy when Disney Magic takes effect. 

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