e-Baying my way to Disney - page 2
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e-Baying My Way to Disney - page 2
By Tom Ryan

After a few minutes sifting through the listings, I found something that matched my criteria: a 7 night stay at Bonnet Creek. A Wyndham resort, Bonnet Creek is technically on the Disney grounds, close to the Caribbean Beach Resort and Epcot, but isn’t owned by the Disney Company.

I looked at TripAdvisor.com, which searches all the discount travel sites (Expedia, Orbitz, Travelocity, etc.) and provides timely and accurate information about which sites will save you the most money. It was showing an average nightly stay at the resort for about $340 a night. The listing was for an 8-day, 7-night stay in one of the resort’s 2-Bedroom Deluxe Mediterranean-themed condo units. If I’d win the auction for anything under $1,000, I would be saving at least $1,380.

Photo above - sky writing above Bonnet Creek

This was it! This is where I wanted to stay. Fully furnished, the unit boasted all the accoutrements a family of 5 would need for an extended, no-holds-barred vacation to Disney World, including 1 King Bed, 2 Full beds, a Queen pullout sleeper sofa, a fully equipped kitchen, a washer/dryer, a Jacuzzi tub, and a balcony – which is all one really needs to survive. For those that need more, they also have a couple of swimming pools, a lazy river, a mini golf course, a playground area, and more planned activities than the last Ryan family reunion. Most importantly, the resort is only minutes from each of the Disney parks.

I looked at the bid history for the listing. Three people were also making a play for the vacation package. With an astute knowledge of how eBay works, I decided to bide my time. For the next two days, I diligently watched the auction. It went up $50 dollars on Wednesday, and another $30 on Thursday, but it was still within my budget. On Friday, at 5:35pm, I decided to make my move. The road to eBay success is paved with bid sniping; essentially bidding on the item the very last minute, to ensure that you, and not the poor soul who had been the high bidder the entire length of the auction, wins the auction. Thirty-six seconds remaining. I entered my total ($955), and clicked the “accept bid” button. I was the high bidder! Breathless, I waited. Twenty seconds, nineteen, eighteen... My pulse quickened. Thirteen, twelve, eleven... This was it. I hit the “refresh” button. Still the high bidder! Five seconds remaining. Anxious, I refreshed again. “Congratulations!” it joyfully read; “You’ve won the auction!” I won! I’m eBaying my way to Disney!

Anyone who travels with a toddler knows that the equipment needed to sustain said toddler’s daily rituals is equivalent to the amount of gear a band of revolutionaries would need to overthrow a small country. There’s the Pack-and-Play, the stroller, the plethora of can’t-live-without toys, the unending supply of diapers (day time diapers, night-time diapers, and swimmies), the training toilet you’re determined to get her to use, the pink pacifiers you’re determined to break her of, the 12-pack of sippy cups, the 3-month-supply of clothes she’ll outgrow before the vacation’s over, the little frilly swimsuits, the day-glow yellow swimming inner tube thingee you know you’re going to have inflate and deflate a million times, the special toddler food you’re too scared to try yourself, and the million other things babies absolutely need to survive, or they will certainly die and it will be all your fault. Needless to say, with the new price increase of checked luggage (which also happens to be the exact amount guerillas would need to fund their coup), we wouldn’t be flying to Florida. I knew our old SUV wouldn’t sustain another drive down I-95, so I started looking for a new vehicle on eBay. I found one: A 2005 Toyota Sienna. I read the description, checked the user’s feedback and Carfax Report, and, satisfied, clicked the “Buy it Now” button. Absolutely fearless.

Continue to page 3 of e-Baying My Way to Disney - finding Discounted Park Tickets

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