Filed under: Trip Planning
Today we’re announcing release 1 of Trip Dashboard, a centralized page on our site with checklists and easy access to planning tools for your Disney and Universal Orlando trips.
One of the most common requests from subscribers is for a single page that contains all of their trip information. Specifically, families planning their first Disney trip are often overwhelmed by the number of things they need to do, often on a deadline, to get the most from their trip. Dashboard addresses these needs in 2 ways:
- Provide a centralized place for all of your trip planning information
- Give context-aware assistance for any trip planning tasks you have to do
What does context-aware assistance mean? One example: if there are 5 people in your family, then in our hotels section we should first show you those rooms that fit 5 people. Or if you tell us your budget for lodging is under $200 per night, we should show you moderate and value resort choices before deluxe resorts. And we should remind you at 181 days before your trip to make dining reservations, and FastPass+ reservations at 60 or 30 days out.
Besides that, this new dashboard also puts on one screen, links to your personalized touring plans, crowd tracker dates, discussions, trips, and lists of things to do.
Since this is release 1 of roughly 12, we’re focusing on basic design and ensuring things are placed on the screen where you think they should be. Other, snazzier functions come later. A mobile version will be released in a few weeks.
Here’s a quick look at Dashboard’s layout. I’ve put orange highlights and numbers on the screen, to organize the explanation that follows.
Here are the various sections:
(1) In the upper right corner is a link to your dashboard. If you visit any other page on the site and need to get back to the dashboard, click this link. This is useful if you need to research something that isn’t implemented in the dashboard.
(2) is the “My Trips” section. This shows which trips you’re planning, and how many days you have until you leave.
If you have multiple trips planned, we’ll highlight in yellow the “active” trip you’re currently working on. Clicking on any other trip will make it active. Trips are organized by upcoming visit date, so your next trip will be at the top of the list.
(3) on the left side navigation area (“left nav”) is your Trip Checklist. It’s a list of reminders of things to do to plan your trip, with links to the various parts of the site where you can get more information on each step. For example, the “Buy Tickets” section will take you to our Least Expensive Ticket calculator page.
(4) on the right side (“right nav”) is information about you and your trips, with links to your username and password, subscriptions, crowd tracking info for this trip, touring plans, discussions and chats, and more. This will also be the place where we put alerts, reminders and messages.
(5) in the middle, is a quick view of what’s happening every day of your trip. You’ll be able to plan and update your daily activities here.
The planner should work for any destination you’ve subscribed to.
Here’s an outline of the next few releases and their timeframes. Desktop versions will usually be released first, and the corresponding mobile functionality will be 1 release later.
- Alerts. Reminders of when to make dining, recreation, and FastPass+ reservations. Future features may include notification when a specific dining or FastPass+ opportunity becomes available. Around August 14.
- Best Parks to Visit. Select and display on the Dashboard the parks you’re going to visit for each day of your trip. Around September 1.
- Enhanced Attractions Pages. Improved layout for each park’s attractions pages, so first-time visitors can easily see which attractions are best suited for their families; 1-click add of an attraction to a touring plans; Easier way to rate attractions and restaurants. Around September 15.
- Discount Ticket Access. Direct access to the Least Expensive Ticket Calculator functionality inside the desktop, so it’s faster and easier to see which sites have the best deals on Disney tickets. Around September 30.
- Hotel Recommendations. For first-time visitors, a tool to help choose where to stay, taking in to account everything from price, to pools, to theme park travel time. Around October 14.
Have an idea for something to add to the Dashboard? Use our new discussion forums to make a suggestion.