There’s no doubt about one of the toughest decisions to make when planning a Walt Disney World vacation is whether to stay at a Disney resort or not. Staying off site can save you hundreds if not thousands of dollars depending on the size of your family. If you could save a couple hundred dollars why would you even consider staying at a Disney resort?
Everyone has their own reasons for why they choose one over another. Some feel the off site rooms are better. While others wouldn’t give up the Disney buses for anything.
We have a list of 5 reasons why you SHOULD stay at a Disney resort.
If you book a Disney Resort you never have to leave WDW during your vacation. Some people love being engulfed in Disney 24/7. There’s nothing like waking up to Mickey, heading to the theme parks, than going back to the resort with Mickey.
Little kids and Disney fanatics love that. While the value resort can be a little in your face with the giant oversized characters. It’s a really nice touch seeing some of your favorite movie characters larger than life.
Even the moderate and deluxe resorts have nice little Disney touches. From Mickey shaped folded towels to nice little art work in the rooms and around the resort. You won’t for one day forget you are in the most magical place on earth.
Disney makes it so easy for you not to have your own vehicle. From transportation from the airport (MCO), to the theme parks and Disney Springs. Disney buses have you covered. But there’s more than just buses.
Depending on which resort you stay at you’ll have different transport options. At select Disney Resorts around the Magic Kingdom you can catch a ride on the monorail or even a boat. You can even get the monorail from the Magic Kingdom to EPCOT via the Ticket and Transportation Center (TTC).
At a few resorts you can catch the brand new Skyliner to EPCOT and Hollywood Studios. Or you can take a nice cruise from Hollywood Studios to EPCOT. Some resorts even have boat transportation to Disney Springs.
Never before has there been so many different opportunities for you to take advantage of. What other theme park resort will you find so many choices? Of course you don’t need to be staying at a Disney resort to use some of these great options but this is just one more reason to pick a Disney resort over any other Orlando Resort.
Depending on who you ask, the Disney Dining Plans are the best idea ever or the worst idea ever. We here at Kozmophotos love the dining plans. Pre-paying for our food cost over the course of the trip is a no brainer for us. Sure sometimes it may not be worth it but if you do a few character meals and like steak you will most likely save a couple dollars over paying out of pocket. For a complete breakdown of the dining plans click here.
Only Disney World resort hotel guests can purchase one of the dining plans. Like we said, we think it is a great value. Not having to worry about paying for food while you are on vacation is a great way to lift stress why you are at Disney.
I don’t know about you but I don’t want to have to look at the price on the menu to decide if I want to pick the steak and have to go with an apple or poptart the next morning for breakfast because money is running tight. You might have to plan a little more to get the best value out of the dining plans but it is well worth it. Check out 13 of the most popular quick service locations at WDW.
FastPass+ isn’t just available to Disney World Hotel guests but only guests staying at selected WDW Hotels and good neighbor hotels can book FastPasses 60 days out. This is a huge advantage over anyone staying off site and even annual pass holders.
You can pretty much forget about getting a FastPass for Flight of Passage over at Animal Kingdom. Slinky Dog Dash or Smuggler’s Run over at Hollywood Studios. I couldn’t even get a Slinky Dog FP for my trip last August when I was 64 days out. Having 30 days before everyone else is worth the little bit of extra money you will be paying to stay at a Disney Resort.
I know plenty of people who wouldn’t even dream of staying anywhere else just because of the 60 day FastPass window. Now you can get those top FP when you are 30 days out or even day of but it is much, much harder.
EXTRA MAGIC HOURS
Extra Magic Hours can really make or break your day at the theme parks. If you are unsure what EMH is we will let you know. Basically extra magic hours are a chance for resort guests to enter the theme parks 1 hour early in the morning or stay 2 hours longer in the evenings. Usually each of the four parks have their own down when they have early or late EMH.
If you plan it right you can have a fantastic day visiting two theme parks. You hit up the park doing AM magic hours and still till about 10 to noon than hop (need park hopper ticket) to a park that is not offering magic hours that day. EMH can really help make the most of your Walt Disney World vacation.
Extra Magic Hours are one of those nice little things that you don’t think you will use or enjoy but end up using it. If you stay off property you would miss out (Staying on vs off property).
When booking a Walt Disney World Vacation for the first time can come with a bit of a sticker shock. Don’t let that discourage you from booking a Disney hotel. With all the extra benefits and “magic” you get is well worth the added cost.
This was only 5 reasons for why you should stay at a Walt Disney World hotel but there are many more. There is nothing like stepping off the Magical Express at your resort. Just like there is nothing better than seeing your child’s face the first time they step foot in the Magic Kingdom.
Be sure to check out all of our other Disney related content. We have all kinds of guides to help make your trip easier and more enjoyable. Clueless on where to start? Check out our handy booking guide and don’t forget to follow us to stay up to date on our latest post.