Which Guidebook?


#1

My neighbors are taking their granddaughter (who is 5 but has VERY adult tastes) to WDW in Dec. They were looking for advice, but when I realized they had NO idea of anything to do with WDW, I knew they had to start with reading a guidebook. There just is no way to tell them everything they need to know before they can even begin to plan this vacation.

So I figured if they read a good guidebook first, then they could get a general understanding of how it works. Then I could help them plan. But I haven’t used a guidebook in many years!

Which guidebook would you guys recommend for Disney virgins?


#2

I like the Unofficial Guide or Passporter for people planning their first trip.


#3

I agree, they have enough time to read through it between now and December, and it really is a thorough guide book.


#4

The Unofficial Guide?

How about the one for kids? Is that necessary, or will the regular one be enough?


#5

I have not read the one for kids, but the Unofficial Guide has plenty on traveling with kids. I think it will be enough.


#6

Excellent. Thank you! :heart:


#7

When my son was young we bought him Birnbaum’s Official Guide because it was written for kids and had lots of big colorful pictures to get him excited.


#8

my daughter really liked the Birnbaums for kids book. especially for her first visit, we would read a little every night before our first visit. then in the back of it is like a scrapbook area where there are areas for all kind of cute things, like a napkin, your ticket, your favorite ride and a bunch of pages for autographs which we used for our character meals.
then after the visit, we went back through & she could relate to all of the things we were reading.


#9

Okay, we will check that out too. Thanks. :happy:


#10

Thanks for starting this thread, Deb. We’re looking to get a guidebook for our next trip as well. Never used one on our previous trips, thanks to the awesome guidance of the MBers. Which should we go with? Birnbaum’s or the Unofficial Guide?


#11

[QUOTE=tinkfans;972411]my daughter really liked the Birnbaums for kids book. especially for her first visit, we would read a little every night before our first visit. then in the back of it is like a scrapbook area where there are areas for all kind of cute things, like a napkin, your ticket, your favorite ride and a bunch of pages for autographs which we used for our character meals.
then after the visit, we went back through & she could relate to all of the things we were reading.[/QUOTE]I will second this one. We haven’t bought a new copy of Birnbaum’s for Kids in about 3 years, but all of my kids love to pull out the 2 older copies often. These books get my kids so excited because they’re written by other kids who love Disney.


#12

I bought the Birnbaums for kids book and have to agree with the previous posters. My DD loves it! For general guides, I have used both Unofficial Guide and Birnbaums - check them out of the library and use for planning. I don’t use them in the parks.


#13

Just a follow-up here:

I went with my neighbor to Borders to check out the books. The Unofficial Guide was so big that she looked positively terrified and gasped, “I have to read all that?”.

I had to agree with her that it looked intimidating for someone who didn’t know the first thing about Disney. She was more interested in the Passporter with the fold out maps and tabs for each heading, so that was what we settled on. She also go the Birnbaum’s for kids book for her granddaughter, who was quite excited to thumb through it.

I think I will go hunt out some park maps for her too. She really needs a detailed property map.


#14

[QUOTE=ddoll;972516]Just a follow-up here:

I went with my neighbor to Borders to check out the books. The Unofficial Guide was so big that she looked positively terrified and gasped, “I have to read all that?”.

I had to agree with her that it looked intimidating for someone who didn’t know the first thing about Disney. She was more interested in the Passporter with the fold out maps and tabs for each heading, so that was what we settled on. She also go the Birnbaum’s for kids book for her granddaughter, who was quite excited to thumb through it.

I think I will go hunt out some park maps for her too. She really needs a detailed property map.[/QUOTE]

I agree about the UG being too much for some first timers, it’s huge. The Passporter is smaller and easier to get through. I’m glad she got something, I hate to hear about people going with no plan or information.


#15

It took us at least 2 months to go thru the UG 09’ , but that also included going back and re-reading info on each park. We compared to the shorter version and it was at least fun to go thru and point out what you want to do.

We did enjoy the browsing of the book … over and over


#16

Ok, I have to tell you, I used Birnbaum’s for our first trip and it was horrid. We were so UNPREPARED for what we found at Disney.

Park maps would be an awesome thing for your neighbor to have a head of time. I also really like my Passporter, I don’t know why I didn’t mention it before.


#17

I’ve had the official and unofficial guides. I was impressed by what passporter put out on the Disney Cruise Line, so I’d recommend the passporter series.


#18

Passporter was a perfect choice! I think it has the clearest, most easy-to-find-and-decipher information for a first-timer.

I know that Unofficial Guide is sooooo intimidating - that’s why it’s perfect for those of us who are so obsessed, we can’t get enough! :tongue:

The Birnbaum’s for kids will help the little one get excited. My parents bought one for my sister on our first trip and I ended up stealing it from her cuz I liked it so much…and I was 15! :laugh:

I never recommend the full/regular Birnbaum’s to anyone. I just think it provides this glossed-over, promotional dip into Disney and doesn’t give you any of the IMPORTANT information! I can’t imagine going to Disney for the first time after having only read Birnbaum’s. It would be a huge (unpleasant) shock.


#19

When we booked our first trip to WDW we bought the PassPorter and it was perfect! Easy to understand and follow and had some great information in! There where sections written for kids and it had tons of information and maps about parks and resorts! Everything a first timer needs (but do try to get them to take a peek on the mousebuzz!)


#20

Well thank you everyone for validating my choice. I feel even better about the decision. Honestly, I haven’t bought a guidebook in years. The last one I did buy was Passporter and I got nothing useful out of it (which is why I never bothered again).

Glad to know it still helps newbies.

This woman is not a computer person at all. I don’t even know if she will find her way to allears.