Thursday, November 17, 2011

Disney Vacation Connection App

1/10/12 UPDATE:  Word on the street is that the "Disney Vacation Connection" is going away.  Users have reported experiencing different behaviors, indicating that this application is no longer going to be supported.  Some have been prompted to save the items in their gallery, along with the message "It's all coming to an end".  Others have been prompted to enter a name, address, and email in order to keep updated in the future.  

While increased overhead and related performance issues were certainly present, many will be very sad to see the Disney Vacation Connection go!  We are all suckers for the trip anticipation factor - and nothing else helps build it quite like seeing a live countdown to your vacation each and every day.

Oddly, the installation program is still available on Disney's website.  No official announcement has been made by Disney regarding the discontinuing of the application at this time.  Is it related in any way to the move this week of the Disney Family groups to Facebook?  A new, streamlined IT Department strategy?  I guess time will tell ... I'll keep you posted of anything I learn.

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It's free, gets rave reviews from users - assisting them with planning and anticipating their upcoming Disney trip with exciting and up-to-date tips, news, and checklists, and even includes a countdown clock display so that you know EXACTLY when your fun is set to begin!  What is it?  It's the free "Disney Vacation Connection" application ... have you tried it out?

How it works:  Install the application.  Enter your next trip's information (reservation dates, resort, etc).  Then just check daily for an instant dose of increased excitement over the upcoming adventure that's in store for you!  It's your own personal travel agent and cheerleader, all rolled into one.   Articles and video clips are featured on both the Parks and upcoming events, which may end up being something you add to your "Must Do" trip list!  

The "Vacation Checklist" is one slick planning tool.  It starts as a comprehensive list of options, along with the applicable time frame for each one.  For example, "Make Dining Reservations - up to 180 days prior".   And my personal favorite:  "Check in Online - 10 days prior"!  (Oooh, that's always such a happy day!)  You can then customize your own checklist to just include the items appropriate for you and your family's trip.  Not going golfing?  You can probably remove the "Reserve a Tee Time" reminder.  You get the idea.

Something I particularly get a kick out of, as the winter winds swirl the snow into drifts around my bedroom window, and I'm fantasizing about the upcoming Florida sunshine:  it displays a side by side weather forecast, of your home vs. your destination.  "Your current temperature:  -14 F", "Walt Disney World:  71 F".  Yeah.  That'll get you looking forward to your vacation.

Another cool feature:  under "My Destination" tab, you will find daily, multiple choice trivia questions enabling you the chance to win points for your correct answer.  The questions are interesting and fun, and once your point balance has built up a bit you can shop to your little heart's content amongst the available digital prizes in the "Gallery".  I once cashed in on an Ariel Computer Game that my daughter loves to play.   Another prize option includes a different skin for your application - giving it a different wrapper, and hence look and feel.  The default skin is Mickey's suitcase, which I find particularly charming and appropriate for a trip planning app.  But I've seen a pretty cool Disney Princess one, too ...

Here's the link to install if you are interested:

Special Note:  Thanks to my friend mrswingert from the Disney forums site for the installation link!

One caveat about installing the Disney Vacation Connection app.  The default is set to launch and automatically run every time your computer is booted.  You will see the small icon for it in your lower right system tray.  And it can be a performance killer.  It can be a resource hog, and it constantly streams via your internet connection, monitoring for live updates.

But overall - I'd say it's well worth it.  It's such a fun program that delivers neat tidbits of info, and gets you all jazzed for your next trip!

Just be aware that after you have it installed, should you notice your computer is acting sluggish and driving you crazy with slow performance, this may be the draining culprit.  If you aren't needing the DVC app at the moment - you can right click that system tray icon (lower right corner), and chose to close it for the time being.  You can always restart it manually by clicking the desktop icon.


1 comment:

  1. Unfortunately it doesn't work anymore... I lost all items in my gallery. Does anyone know how to collect these items?



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