We've covered the fact that you are going to Disney World and the different things to plan your trip around. We've covered how to get to Disney World and where to stay in Disney World. The next decision you have to make is what type of tickets to buy.
I guess the first thing is that you can combine all of these things: transportation, lodging and tickets if you use the WDW Travel Company. Or you can use a travel agent, AAA or GoGo Vacations. I personally always use WDW Travel. I'm not sure why, but I do. I've never compared prices, but am sure I could save some if I explored other possibilities. Let me know if you have had better luck with other companies or agencies.
"Magic Your Way" base ticket allows everyone in your party admission to one park (Magic Kingdom, Epcot, Hollywood Studios, or Animal Kingdom) each day of your visit. You don't have to stay on property to buy/ use base tickets. These are the average entrance tickets to the parks. You can purchase 1-10 days. Unused days will expire after 14 days after the ticket is first used. If you want to visit more than one park in a day you must add the "Park Hopper" option. This will cost $52. You can also add the "Water Park Fun & More" option. This will allow you into the water parks, Blizzard Beach and Typhoon Lagoon, Disney Quest (an arcade on steroids), Disney's sports complex, or a round of golf at the Oak Trail golf course. This is also a $52 extra option. You will be able to visit these places between 3-6 times during your vacation depending on the number of days you have on your base ticket. The last option is "No Expiration". For an additional fee (depending on how many days are on your base ticket) you can have unused days good for forever! (I still have 3 unused "no expiration" days from a 10 day park hopper ticket purchased in 2006!)
"Magic Your Way" also lets you customize your vacation if everyone in your party is on the same package and ticket plan. There are different packages within "Magic Your Way":
1. Magic Your Way This package is available to anyone staying at a Disney resort and buying park tickets. You also have unlimited use of WDW Transportation, Extra Magic Hours and the Magical Express transportation service from the Orlando airport. (There may be more perks... check with Disney!)
2. Magic Your Way Plus Dining You get everything mentioned in the Magic Your Way description and a dining plan that includes one quick service meal, a snack, and one meal at a table-service restaurant per person, per night of your vacation.
3. Magic Your Way Plus Quick Service Dining You get the Magic Your Way perks, plus 2 quick service meals, 2 snacks and a refillable mug for each person in your party each day of your stay. Quick Service Dining Plan prices: Adults $31.99 per person per night; children 3-9 $9.99 per person per night
4. Magic Your Way Plus Deluxe Dining Again, you get the Magic Your Way package plus 3 meals a day that can be used at any eatery that participates in the Dining Plan. These can be quick service or table service meals. I believe it also comes with 2 snacks. Deluxe Dining Plan prices: Adults $71.99 per person per night; children 3-9 $20.99 per person per night
5. Magic Your Way Plus Premium Magic Your Way package plus 3 meals a day at any restaurant plus unlimited access to certain recreation opportunities, admission to La Nouba, admission to a children's activity, unlimited admission to theme park tours, preferred viewing for fireworks and shows, a portrait session with photopass photographers and admission to all magical gatherings experiences (if you have more than 8 in your party). Check with Disney for the price!
6. Magic Your Way Plus Platinum The only difference between the Premium and Platinum Package is that this one, Platinum, features a stay at a deluxe Disney resort, plus spa treatments, a fireworks cruise, room service, preferred seating at Fantasmic and opportunities for high end dining at Victoria and Albert's.
Applicable taxes are included in all the packages. Gratuity is typically not included.