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Sanibel good for us? - Family of 4

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Rochester, MN
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Sanibel good for us? - Family of 4

My family (myself, wife, 3 1/2 yr old, and 10 mo old) have some freq. flyer miles to burn and would like to take a 5-7 day trip to FL in late March or early April to unwind and get out of the cold a bit (we live in MN). We want someplace to visit with some beaches and a little slower pace as we have a baby that will need naps, diaper changes, etc - SO we can't just go, go, go like we used to. We do like to take walks and explore nature, and I like some history as well (but not too much for the young ones). Is the Ft. Myers/Sanibel area good for us?

I inquired on the Orlando Forum about Disney but most are saying wait a few years you will enjoy it more.

The Bakery
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1. Re: Sanibel good for us? - Family of 4

Sanibel would be a great choice. it's very nature oriented. Your problem will be finding a place to stay. That week is one of the busiest of the year and many budget places rented out out already.

Read this thread for a LOT of information we did just this week for another traveler with children, just slightly older than yours, but still needing that near beach arrangement.

tripadvisor.com/…45669163

That should answer a lot of your questions.

This unit is open at the same complex the other poster booked, in the building behind the beachfront one.

royalshell.com/vrmgr/…Villa-Sanibel-2C

It will price about $2000/wk +/- a bit depending on whether you take the travel insurance and that includes the 11% tax. Is that you price range?

Chicago, Illinois
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2. Re: Sanibel good for us? - Family of 4

If you have some flexibility, rates for condos drop drastically after Spring Break...starting around April 13th for 2013....might enable you to rent a beachfront condo so you could sit on your lanai and enjoy the atmosphere while the children nap.

Edited: 07 December 2012, 23:41
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3. Re: Sanibel good for us? - Family of 4

Since the kids aren't in school yet You would be well-advised to wait, as was stated previously. EVERYBODY goes to Sanibel in March & April...including me ;-) But it's a place you WILL enjoy!

The Bakery
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4. Re: Sanibel good for us? - Family of 4

Though in general, most condos start dropping rates mid-April, I notice a few places dropping them as early as April 6 (as in arrival April 6) and others as late as 27 and some even having a shoulder season these days.

Look around, I saw Villa Sanibel rates dropped very early on one unit dropped for over $2000 for the week to about $1275 including tax and fees.

Ocean's Reach rates, which have a complicated weekly schedule, declined slowly to mid-May and starting April 13.

Most just make a single switch between April 6 and the last Sat in April.

Regardless, GrandmaMac and Ralph are right, waiting as little as as a week can save a LOT of money for many options as well as open availability.

Hotels/daily rentals do their own thing and logic is driven occupancy rates.

Edited: 08 December 2012, 02:52
Rochester, MN
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5. Re: Sanibel good for us? - Family of 4

I should have mentioned we do have some flexibility and do not have to go in March. Kids are not in school, wife can take vaca whenever from her job, and I do Lawn and Landscape up here so currently off (I do some snow removal but by late March into April its pretty much done).

I would like to try and do this trip by mid April though, as last year spring hit VERY early up here and by beginning of April I was full tilt into my business. That is unusually early though.

The Bakery
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6. Re: Sanibel good for us? - Family of 4

The last two weeks of March are spring break weeks and the week of March 30-April 6 is Easter weeks, they are the 3 busiest weeks of the year and when the island gets close to sold out.

Hunt now and see what you can afford. There is little available, but start April 6, things open up. Perhaps early March, while still super peak, might have better availability than late March, but the weather is less reliably warm.

UK
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7. Re: Sanibel good for us? - Family of 4

I agree with all the above. Sanibel IS for you, but given I am now taking vacations out of school times for the first time in 17 years (as mine are all off to College now), I do strongly suggest you look towards scheduling vacations outside of school holidays when you can. Everything from rentals to flights are cheaper then (and easier to use points as well).

Having said all that, if you really really want to vacation then, go for it.

Massachusetts
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8. Re: Sanibel good for us? - Family of 4

Sanibel would be perfect!!! Yes, I would definitely wait to do Disney until the kids are older. Took my daughter to Disney when she was 3.. sure it was fun, but the older the better!

Rochester, MN
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9. Re: Sanibel good for us? - Family of 4

I thank everyone for their great insight.

We are booking flights on miles (to save $$), but I cannot find the flights I want for the time period we want to travel (into Ft. Myers). Therefore I think we will have to take a raincheck on a Sanibel trip but will visit in the future. The location looks just perfect!

Also found that most of the resorts and condo's, as you all have stated, are very pricey ($300 + per night) mid March to mid April. Did not want to spend quite that much.

UK
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10. Re: Sanibel good for us? - Family of 4

This is what I was saying, it is hard to find flights for points when you look in peak periods such as Spring break, xmas etc.

If you don't want to wait til end of april/may and want to go when it is cold, look at Nov, Early Dec next year when rates are lower and flights will be easier to find.