When you decide to book a Disney vacation, you might think any accommodation will do; after all, a bed is a bed, right? However, there are a few points that you should consider before choosing the best resort option for your needs that could mean the difference between a good experience and the trip of a lifetime. Believe it or not, for some families, the best option might not be the most expensive one. Here are a few tips to help you narrow down the most suitable resort options for your Walt Disney World stay.
Keeping Your Budget Relative
When you are comparing hotels that are away from Disney property against the resorts that are available on-site, remember to keep the pricing of all components of your stay in mind. For example, the room itself might be cheaper, but it may require an additional expense to get to and from the parks by way of transport or parking fees. While there aren’t as many as they used to be, Disney resorts have a lot of inclusions for both your budget and your convenience that can be hard to beat, depending on your options. Transport is a big draw card as most Disney resorts have at least two transport options that allow you to navigate the majority of the Walt Disney World resort without needing a vehicle of your own.
Bedding to Suit Your Family
Getting the most out of your Disney vacation requires a lot of energy, and if you aren’t able to enjoy a restful night’s sleep in between Disney days, you might struggle to enjoy the experience fully. If your family is all crammed into shared beds that leave them tossing and turning all night, chances are they won’t feel the best come morning. For better family room options, you might think that a Deluxe resort is required, though there is a good chance that you can upgrade to a more suitable room option in a Moderate or Value Resort for less money. If you have an extra little one, try the Standard Room with 5th Sleeper at Port Orleans Riverside. Need more space rather than bigger beds? Try the Families Suites at Art of Animation. Be sure to read the fine print, not just look at the pictures. Some Disney resorts have double beds rather than Queen Beds, which can make things more difficult when sharing.
Consider The Distance To Your Focus Area
As the saying goes, time is money. If you are focusing on a particular area of the Walt Disney World Resort, concentrate your resort search on the nearest area. While it might be a little more expensive, the ease of access to the area you want to be in will save you time and frustration. For example, if you are mainly visiting Magic Kingdom, creating your base in one of the All-Star resorts can make for long trips back and forth. A closer moderate resort might provide a more convenient option without spending too much more.
Know Your Transport Options
If you aren’t planning on having a car to drive independently, then you will want to know what transportation options are available at your resort. Even though Walt Disney World is fantastic when it comes to offering multiple methods of transport, not all are equally loved by guests. Buses, ferries, Skyliner, or monorail, make sure that where you want to stay has a suitable option for your family. You don’t want to be relying on the Skyliner if someone in your group is afraid of heights. While buses are available at almost every location, in busy times, you won’t always be able to get on to the next bus that arrives and may have to wait for several (depending on available space on board) until your place in the queue can depart. This can be especially difficult for those with Wheelchairs or EVCs, as there are limited areas on board for these. In some cases, like around Disney’s Boardwalk area, it can often be easier and faster to walk to either EPCOT or Disney’s Hollywood Studios rather than waiting for the boats.
Add in a Room Request
Now, before we get into this one, I must stress that a request is just that: a request. Not a confirmation or a stipulation; it simply might not be possible, and there won’t be anything they can do. However, it never hurts to add anything in there that would make your stay easier. Do your research on the rooms available in your preferred location and think about what might be beneficial for your family. For example, if you have a young child who needs a daytime nap, it might be better (and quieter) to be situated further away from the hustle and bustle of the pools and main entrance area. If you have selected a resort that does not have lift access in all buildings, be sure to make a ground-floor request or look into a preferred room in a building that does have lift access. The ground floor can also be a good spot if you have wheelchairs or strollers; just taking one extra step out of the coming and going process can make a big difference.
If you’ve got any tips for first-timers trying to find the perfect resort fit for their family, add them to the comments below.
For more help choosing your perfect Walt Disney World Resort, ask for a free quote from the team at Dreams Unlimited Travel so they can help you plan the Walt Disney World Vacation you’ve been dreaming of.
Zoë Wood is a travel writer from Sydney, Australia. Since her first visit to Disneyland at the age of 6, she has spent her years frequently visiting Disney Parks and traveling around the world.
Join Zoë as she lets you in on all the tips, tricks, anecdotes, and embarrassments that arise from her family adventures.