Friday, March 18, 2016

5 Reasons to Stay at a Walt Disney World Resort Hotel

When planning a trip to Walt Disney World, there are an abundance of hotel options in and around Disney World. While booking a hotel in Kissimmee or Orlando might be a little easier on the wallet, there are so many benefits to staying on-site that you can only get at a Walt Disney World Resort hotel.

1. Quality

Nothing compares to the Disney standard for quality service! Disney pays close attention to every detail and trains all Cast Members (employees) to represent the Disney brand respectably. Whether you're staying at the top Deluxe resort or the most affordable Value hotel, you can rest easy knowing that your room will be clean, the property will be well-maintained, and the service will be friendly and helpful.

2. Convenience

Staying at a Walt Disney World Resort hotel means that you are right in the middle of the action, within close proximity to at least one park and with access to free Disney transportation. Parking at Walt Disney World Resort hotels is complimentary for guests, and you always have option to drive from park to park if you prefer to do so. But why drive and fight the parking lot crowd when you can use Disney's transportation and get dropped off near the park entrance?! All Walt Disney World Resort hotels provide guests with free bus transportation to and from any of the Disney World parks. Three of the Deluxe hotels (Contemporary, Grand Floridian, and Polynesian) are connected to the monorail, which is a ride in and of itself and can take you to the Magic Kingdom, Epcot, or the Transportation Center. Additionally, several resorts have access to ferry transportation to select parks.

3. Extra Magic Hours

Disney parks can be VERY crowded, especially during the mid-day hours. But did you know that as a Walt Disney World Resort hotel guest, you can stay in the park after it closes to the general public? Extra Magic Hours are available for select parks on select days to all Walt Disney World Resort hotel guests, giving you the opportunity to experience a much less crowded park for a couple of hours before the park opens or after the park closes to all other guests. I can personally attest to the benefit of Extra Magic Hours, having experienced wait times of less than 10 minutes for rides that consistently had over 2 hour long wait times during regular operating hours. I even rode the Rockin' Roller Coaster at Hollywood Studios three times in about 20 minutes!

4. Dining Plan

The Disney Dining Plan is offered as an option with Disney's Magic Your Way vacation package when booking your stay at a Walt Disney World Resort hotel. While not for everyone, the Disney Dining Plan offers a level of comfort and convenience when planning your dining options for your Disney vacation. There are different types of dining plans, but the most common gives you credits for one snack, one quick service meal, and one table service meal per night booked at a Disney hotel. These credits can be used at virtually any Walt Disney World restaurant. Some "signature" restaurants require two meal credits, so making restaurant reservations does require a little research and planning. However, when used properly, the Disney Dining Plan can save you money, especially if you plan to eat at the pricier restaurants or have kids that will want a snack every day! Plus, it's definitely convenient to have your dining pre-paid and not have to worry about budgeting for meals during your trip.

Extra tip: Use your daily snack credit to purchase a muffin, cinnamon roll, fruit cup, etc. at your hotel for a quick breakfast before heading to the parks for the day.

5. Total Immersion

I almost named this point "atmosphere," but that one simple word just didn't quite fully describe what I wanted to say. Yes, other hotels outside of Walt Disney World can provide a fantastic and fun-filled experience with outstanding dining options, themed rooms, and amazing pools and water parks. However, the atmosphere you experience at a Walt Disney World Resort hotel, especially at one of the more heavily themed Deluxe or Moderate hotels, truly pulls you in and immerses you in the full Disney experience. Kids and adults alike can appreciate the thrill and excitement of spending every minute of your vacation at Disney World rather than just the park operating hours. From breakfast with the Disney Princesses in a hotel restaurant and evening campfires with Chip and Dale, to the Hidden Mickeys in the carpet and the Disney towel origami left in your room by "mousekeeping," Walt Disney World Resort hotels offer that extra special touch to make your vacation truly magical!

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