I plan on taking my kids (one older teen and a 9 year old) to Disneyworld before our cruise. Since the cruise is an arm and a leg, I would like to keep the costs down and Disneyworld. Is it better to stay at one of the value resorts at Disneyworld or stay out of the park? Staying at a value resort still cost more then on the outside but I was told there are perks. What are the perks? Any help will be appreciated. Julie.
MARINER OF THE SEAS-JULY 2006
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MONARCH OF THE SEAS-AUGUST 2004
I've stayed both on property and off. When my kids were little I always stayed on as it was easier to go back to the hotel for "rest time". When you stay on property you use Disney's transportation service to get to and from the parks (which is excellent) so you don't have to pay to park, you don't have the hassle of driving back and forth between the hotel and the park if you want to go back to you room to rest, swim, eat, etc.. Also, on certain days one park will open an hour early for guests only. Now that my kids are older we stay off site. I stay at Sierra Suites (we're a family of 6). They offer free transporation to area attractions and a free continental breakfast. If you stay more than two nights they usually have some sort of a special that invovles free tickets. The last time we stayed there is was two nights pre-cruise and we got two free tickets to Universal Studios. The room for the six of us was $99/night and the tickets were worth $50 a piece so that brough the price of the room down to $50 a night, with free breakfast and transportation. A lot of the area hotels offer a free shuttle service to Disney. I would do one of those if you're staying off property.
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The convenience is great at the value resorts. You dont have to drive anywhere. Take disney transportation anywhere you might want to go. If you stay on property each park has an early open day where only the people who stay at disney get in an hour early. That gives you a good jump on most of the crowds. That is the only perks I know of.
For us it was just so convenient to be able to go back to the room in the afternoon and take a rest, or play in the pool, then back to the parks for the evening. Just staying in a themed hotel sets the mood for the whole experience. The value resorts are very nice. All have food courts, small store and arcade for the kids. Most have disney movies playing in the eating area too.