Are you having trouble deciding where to stay for your Disney World vacation? It’s a common dilemma and many families find themselves asking if they should choose a Disney hotel or not. A common misconception is that staying at Disney will cost you more, but in fact, that is not true! At a value level hotel, you’ll pay the same rate that you would at any other local discount hotel. So, cost should not be a deterrent, best to get all the information before basing it on that alone.
Other than cost though, what are some of the other benefits of staying at a Disney hotel? Well, there are a lot! When I first started travelling to Disney, I used to stay off-site, but the moment I tried a Disney hotel, I was hooked! The experience is SO different and personally, I would not want to stay anywhere else. Here are my top reasons for choosing a Disney hotel:
#1. The Disney Magic!
Disney provides some of the best service and hospitality you will find in the travel industry, and you can really feel it at their hotels. You just won’t get the same level of service at another hotel. Also, the “feeling” of being at Disney never goes away when you leave the park. You get to be surrounded in the magic of Disney for your entire stay and there is just something about that that keeps people coming back to their hotels over and over again. Not only will you see touches of Disney in the decor, but the cast members add to the experience. It’s no secret that they provide the best customer service in the world, so that will continue at your hotel as well.
#2. Disney Transportation
When you stay at a Disney hotel, you get access to their complimentary transportation system. It makes it so easy getting around the property and you do not have to worry about driving and paying for parking at the parks. You just hop on a bus, ferry or monorail and it takes you to your destination. You never wait very long either as their vehicles usually come at least every 20 minutes. For exact details on all the different types of transportation offered, check out All You Need to Know About Disney Transportation.
I was once coming back from Hollywood Studios on a Disney bus late at night and there was a family on the bus with an older son that had special needs. On the bus, they were playing the song YMCA. The son started to sing along to the music on the bus, just enjoying himself. Within a couple of minutes, the entire bus was singing along with him. The smile on his face is something I will never forget. It’s that typical Disney “feeling” that runs through and it even carries through to your bus rides 🙂
#3. Extra Magic Hours
There is no doubt that Disney is getting busier and busier as they add new lands to their parks and I don’t anticipate that it will get any better. With that being said, Extra Magic Hours are such a blessing to help you experience the parks with less crowds. You’ll get access to special hours that are only open to Disney hotel guests. They usually happen 1 hour prior to regular opening or for 2 hours after closing. If you check the Disney park schedule, you will see when the extra magic hours are being offered so that you can plan accordingly.
#4. Free Magic Bands
I think the Magic Bands are genius and are so convenient! Now that I’ve used them for years, I would not want to go back to using a card and having to pull it out of my pocket/bag everytime I needed to scan it to get in a park or for a Fastpass. Having it as a wristband and just being able to tap it is the best! When you stay at a Disney hotel, every guest gets a complimentary one. Otherwise, you need to purchase them for $15.97 USD.
#5. Variety of Food Options
Every Disney hotel has at minimum a full food court. This isn’t something you will find at your standard hotel and I personally find it makes it very easy to grab a meal. When you stay at a non-Disney hotel, chances are you have to leave the hotel to find somewhere to eat. No need to do this at a Disney hotel. The values all have food courts and as you move up levels (moderates, deluxes etc.), you’ll have even more options with sit-down restaurants as well.
#6. Access to the Dining Plan
Want to take advantage of Disney’s Dining Plan, so that you can enjoy many of the restaurants that Disney has to offer? Of course, you can just pay for meals out of pocket, but sometimes getting the dining plan makes more economical sense if you plan to do a lot of sit-downs, character meals or signature restaurants. The Disney Dining Plan is ONLY available to Disney hotel guests. A great reason to choose a Disney hotel!
#7. Fastpass Selection
This is probably one of the best reasons for staying at a Disney hotel. You get access to choosing your Fastpasses 60 days in advance, as opposed to 30 days. That means you get first pick and that is really important for the super popular rides. Fastpasses for the newest rides (which have the longest lines) are really hard to get and often your only chance is if you are booking 60 days out. I like to make sure I get the Fastpasses I most want and booking at 60 days is my best bet!
Do you have any reasons for choosing a Disney hotel that is not mentioned above? Or maybe you have reasons for choosing other hotels? I would love to hear your comments below! If you would like to get a quote for a stay at any of the Disney hotels, you can request a no obligation quote from ClicktheMouse. They are our recommended travel agency and they provide a full service (at no extra cost), which means they will help you with all the planning required to make your vacation magical 🙂
Laura is a mom of one adorable girl with a love of all things Disney. She traveled to Disney World with her family in 2010 and was hooked. They have since been a total of over 15 times. With all her knowledge of planning Disney trips, she now wants to share that with others. She loves giving guidance, tips and advice to others planning their magical vacation!