Meet's Orlando Experts Simon and Susan Veness

 Meet ATD's Orlando Experts Simon and Susan Veness

So...who are your experts?

We are the resident Florida experts for The Telegraph travel section, writing regular reviews and reports on all that’s new, and we contribute features and do Restaurant Reviews for Orlando Attractions Magazine.

Simon Veness

Well, for my part, it all began with a trip to the original Disneyland in 1987 and a theme park fixation that refused to go away. To assuage the withdrawal symptoms after a subsequent holiday to Orlando, I began writing what eventually turned into A Brit Guide to Orlando and, to my great surprise, it transformed into an alternative career (national newspaper sports journalism being forced to take a back seat).

Now, more than 20 years later, I find myself domiciled in the real Sunshine State, with an American wife and a theme park fixation that still, happily, refuses to go away.

Susan Veness

My story is slightly different, having been among the first few people to visit the Magic Kingdom when it opened in 1971 (at a very tender age, of course). My visits to the wonderful world of Disney have therefore been going on since the World began.

From the insights that come only with being a genuine paying customer, I forged a reputation as an Orlando specialist on a major Walt Disney World discussion forum and began sending in tips and ideas for the Brit Guide (via the website, which Simon also contributed to).

The usefulness of my tips and insider info quickly translated into an offer to become a regular researcher for the Brit Guide, subsequently I became an integral part of the small but highly motivated team. Now we can safely say we are a two-person team in every sense of the word, with our own full-time base in Orlando.

The Brit Guide to Orlando

First published in 1995, the Brit Guide now boasts sales in excess of 350,000. We are immensely proud of our reputation as real Disney ‘professionals’, the inside knowledge combo who know the place at least as well as the people who work there (or better in some cases, as we are often told!). And we have expanded our Orlando offerings as Susan’s first solo work, The Hidden Magic of Walt Disney World, hit shelves in June 2009, followed by our collaboration on the Hidden Magic Planner (2012), and Susan’s Hidden Magic Trivia (2013). They are available on and at book stores everywhere (including the Hudson Booksellers store in Orlando International Airport).

Why We Write's Expert View?

Although it has been a fairly long and complicated road, our motivation remains simple – to help ensure people have the best possible time they can, at the best price and with the least hassle in our favourite place on earth.

Orlando really is a fiendishly complicated holiday destination, and it often requires a degree in advanced physics to negotiate all the many permutations of attractions it offers. And we just hate to think of people paying out huge amounts to be here and not get full value for their hard-earned money.

However, with our help, we feel certain you will be better prepared for all that’s in store – and truly ready to have the holiday of a lifetime...

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