Apologies to anyone in the Essex area this morning if cracks appeared in your windows or your dog started to howl – both could well have been triggered by the sound of me squeaking with excitement when my confirmation email arrived for the Disneyland Paris Half Marathon. As regular readers know, I had given up on the idea of getting a place in this race when they announced that entries were opening on October 13th – a day I was in the air flying back from Australia to London. The last few Disney races have sold out in less than an hour so I figured I had no hope getting in to this one.
I was being stoic about it – I’d even booked myself a refundable offsite hotel and was going to try for one of the seriously coveted bib places that are going to be released on January the 12th – but I was bitterly disappointed. I’ve flown halfway round the world to run Disney races (literally from NZ to Florida and from the UK to LA) and so I was desperate to run this one that’s virtually on my doorstep.
When I got home from the flight I checked the various websites selling packages and a few forums and I kept seeing the words ‘sold out’, ‘sold out’ ‘sold out’ – but I also noticed one site was taking deposits for a wait list in case more rooms were released – and so I hit the phones.
I spoke to two sites who said they were expecting new packages to become available that day. 10 minutes later I got a call back from Sports Tours International who said they were out….sadly, I couldn’t book with them as they didn’t have a deal for solo travellers, but I thought ‘well lets’ call Disneyland Paris themselves and see what they have’ – and within 20 minutes I had a place – although I didn’t really believe that was true until the confirmation mail came this morning.
I am ridiculously excited. There may even have been a small sob I had to hide on the phone when she said ‘that’s it, you’re in’
But I just checked the Sports Tours International website and they still have packages available so, if you didn’t get in on day one, give them a try. Solo travelers might be better booking via Disneyland Paris direct (you have to do this by phone but this is where you find the phone number for your local area).
Oh and as for that offsite hotel I’ve booked – it’s got a spa so I’m going to swap the booking and stay there before the run as an extra treat. I blooming love this running lark!