Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Where to stay?

Deciding where to stay when visiting Disney World is an important decision. Many things factor into what is best for you. Money, is probably the biggest, at least for us it is.

Of our eight trips to Disney World, 1 was off-property (our first trip), 5 were value, and 2 were moderate.

We mainly stay at the values for the price. We're not rolling in dough, so most of the time, to be able to afford a Disney vacation every year, we have to stay as cheaply as possible. But it works out great for us. We love the theming of the value resorts, the larger than life icons, and bright colors. Tons of Disney magic!! And great photo ops! The pools are fun and the food court is great. We usually only eat there once or twice a trip anyway. We spend very little time at our resort, as we'd rather spend our time at the parks. So for us, spending more money on a place to basically sleep and shower is just silly.

We have stayed at a moderate resort twice and had our reasons for the upgrade, which I'm sure are the same reasons many people stay there as opposed to value resorts. The first time was our 10th anniversary trip. We wanted something a little fancier and since our son was only 9 months old at the time, we figured we'd spend more time at the resort and take advance of the amenities more, like the water slide and hot tub. (We didn't though. We still spent most of our time at the parks and only swam once.) The second time was just me and hubby, so we decided a resort with a hot tub was a valuable upgrade. We used it every single night. The moderate resorts do a really fantastic job of transporting you to another place. You do lose the Disney magic, but the resorts are pretty peaceful and serene and really relaxing.

We have never stayed at a deluxe resort, but have visited plenty of them. They have the best restaurants!! Everything is high class all the way and transport you somewhere really fabulous. Most have at least two forms of transportation, so that's nice..not always having to take the bus.

So, where do you stay?? Do you always stay in a certain category, or do you like to try different ones? Is money a factor in your decision?


  1. We've stayed at all levels of the Disney hotels from the Value resorts all the way to the Deluxe category of Garden Suites at the Boardwalk Inn. I have to say that given the choice, I'd rather stay in the Deluxe.

    Why? They offer so much more in the way of entertainment for your buck, but the sad thing is they don't come cheap.

    I stayed off property before also. While that may be cheaper (not always) it's a pain in the butt transportation wise.

    Sigh. I wish we had money to go to Disney this year.

  2. For us, if we stayed deluxe, it would mean a trip only every 2-3 years. And that just doesn't work for me!!! LOL!! I don't mind staying at a value if it means we can go every year. We spend so little time at the resort...even when we did stay at a mod, we didn't increase our resort time. I think the only thing that would increase the time we spent at the resort was if we could also increase the length of our stay. We would do more down time at the resort if we had 2 or 3 more days at WDW. 8-9 days is what we need just to do everything we want in the parks!!

  3. Great write up! I have also stayed at all levels of resort and I literally hold All Star Movies so close to my heart because it was my first disney trip hotel! lol!

    I added you to my pages link, btw! :)

  4. We're DVC now (Saratoga Springs), but we've stayed at every other level! We've stayed at the Grand Floridian (honeymoon--no kids!), Wilderness Lodge, Animal Kingdom Lodge, Old Key West, Coronado Springs, Caribbean Beach, Port Orleans (Riverside/Dixie Landings) and French Quarter, Dolphin, Pop Century and I'm sure I'm missing a few others! It's hard to pick a favorite--they all have their own special charm. Wilderness Lodge has an awesome pool, OKW has nice big rooms in a relaxed, Florida setting, Animal Kingdom Lodge has, well, animals, Pop Century was fun with the kids and Grand Floridian was nice for it's quick access to MK and the monorail. I'm happy to stay just about anywhere in WDW, just as long as I'm staying in WDW!

  5. Thanks Melissa!!! AS Movies was our first on property resort, so it's pretty special to us too. But I kick myself because we didn't even walk around the place and see everything there!! But our next trip will be at that daughter wants to go back there since she was only 2 when went the first time!

    Yay Beth! You figured it out!! And I so agree...I don't care where I lay my head as long as I'm there!!!

  6. When we went we stayed at the last place you stayed, I believe, it was 15 years ago that I went. When we went it was cheerleading competition as my brother was in the pee-wee football championships. Oh goodness---I vowed NEVER to come back during cheerleading week if I ever came back. All I saw were curlers and heard millions of chants. I have nothing against cheerleaders but it was a tad too much at once

  7. Yeah...Pop Warner week can be a little overwhelming. We didn't experience too much at our resort, but we got of the bus one night at All Star Sports and OMG!! So crazy there!!

  8. our first (and only) trip was a convention trip, so we had no choice of where to stay--beach club was the only option, and it was mostly paid for by my husband's work. we had no concept of anything disney at the time...and LOVED it there. in the airport on the way home, i looked up actual prices to return to the beach club...yeah, we won't ever be doing that! i'm staying at a moderate for my next trip, and at animal kingdom lodge the trip after that (but that's only because my mother is paying!) money is definitely a factor!

  9. After that little background info, I know exactly who you are!!!

    I would soooooooooooooooo love to stay at every deluxe (awesome that your husband's work paid!!) But I know it won't be a reality for some time....maybe when the kids are older and maybe when we're making more money....maybe one of my books will sell a million copies and then I can go deluxe!! LOL!!