If you start talking about Walt Disney World with family and friends you will notice there is a big debate out there – to stay or not to stay at a Walt Disney World Resort. No matter which side of the fence you lie, there seems to be strong opinions either way. Clearly I am a Disney Resort kind of person. Perhaps some of my motivation is nostalgia, but there are just some concrete benefits that you can’t deny. Vacationing is very unique to each family, so my goal is not to persuade anyone, but rather to highlight the benefits that I have come to love.
#10 Proximity – This is a no brainer. Look at any Disney property map and you will see Disney Resorts are closest to the magic. Many hotels will say they are “close”, but they can’t be nearly as close as a Walt Disney World resort.
#9 Transportation – All Walt Disney World Resorts provide free bus transportation, but many are so close you can walk directly into a park. There are even resorts that have themed boat shuttles and direct monorail access. It’s always awesome to pass right over those busy parking lots!
#8 Disney’s Magical Express – When staying at a Walt Disney World resort, you don’t need to worry about how you will get to and from the airport. Disney’s Magical Express will pick you up free of charge. They even transport your luggage for you! Gone are the days of juggling a stroller and all of your suitcases. Simply check your bags in your departing city, and Disney takes care of the rest. I know some travelers still want to rent a car, but why? I would personally rather save the hundreds of dollars and headache of a car rental (not to mention the parking fees). If Disney gets me to and from the airport and then drives me around on my vacation, why not take advantage of it?
#7 Extra Magic Hours – When staying at a Walt Disney Resort you receive the benefit of being in the park during hours designated only for resort guests. These times fluctuate between morning and evening hours and rotate between the parks. This fluctuation allows you and your family the best variety when visiting parks with lower volume.
#6 Magic Bands – This may sound trivial, but I just can’t say how convenient this feature is. Your magic band acts as your room key, room charge, park ticket and fast pass entry. I love not carrying all of my money with me and worrying I will lose my room key. I have it all with me at all times.
#5 Early booking – When staying at a Walt Disney World resort you receive the benefit of priority booking. Dining reservations can be made 180 days in advance for your entire stay and fast passes can be reserved 60 days in advance. Non resort guests can book fast passes 30 days in advance, so this gives you an entire month to select your favorite rides.
#4 Dining Plan – When staying at a Walt Disney Resort you have the option to purchase a Disney Dining Plan. This package is booked with a set price per night of your stay and provides you with a set amount of meals on your trip. Not only is this a great value, but it also makes planning your meals easy. The dining options at the WDW resorts and parks are top notch, so there is never a lack of choice.
#3 Extras – As with anything Disney, the extra touches are really what keep guests coming back. Free package delivery, exercise facilities, amazing pools, great recreation options and specially themed kid’s clubs are a few of my favorite perks. Each resort is also uniquely themed and provides extra touches specific to the hotel. From music to themed pools, each Disney resort will transport you to a world all it’s own.
#2 Customer Service – Whenever we travel outside of Disney, I am quickly reminded of the level of customer service Disney upholds. I know when I check into a Disney resort my room will be high quality and the hotel staff will be attentive to my needs. Have a problem while on your vacation? Disney concierge desks are there to help you have the most enjoyable stay possible. It’s all in the details.
#1 A Seamless Experience – This, in my opinion, is the #1 benefit of staying at a Walt Disney World resort. You will truly have a seamless experience from beginning to end. Where else can you step off an airplane and literally be cared for from the moment you arrive until the moment you leave? There will be no doubt that you are part of the magic from the very beginning of your trip. Because of Disney’s unique theming and attention to your overall experience, you will feel part of the Disney magic until your plane takes you back home.
With approximately 20 resort options on the Walt Disney World property, there really is something for everyone. Choosing a resort is a very personal choice and unique to each family. If you would like help deciding which location is best for your family, contact your favorite Hi Ho Vacation Planner to help lend a hand!
Danielle@hihovacations.com or 317-750-0450