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Disney hotel or not?

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Livingston, United...
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Disney hotel or not?

we are thinking of a holiday at Disney May 2011. 14 days with a hire car. The party wil be 4 adults and one Child age 4. This will be our first visit to Disney and would be grateful for any help, We are looking at a moderate hotel but would we be better inside the parks in a Disney hotel or stay outside the theme park ?

Can you get the dining paln if you stay outside the parks?

How busy will the parks be in May?

Will we have time to visit any of the universal parks or will the 14 days be taken up with Disney.

My grand daufgter has a thing for Buzz at the moment. Does anyone know if Character meals are available with Buzz

Any help much appreciated. Thanks

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1. Re: Disney hotel or not?

If it's your first visit and your destination are the Disney Parks, I highly recoemnd you stay at a Disney Resort. You wouldn't even need a car rental, free transport to all the Parks as well as to and from the Airport ( MCO ) makes it all very stressfree

OIf you wanted to visit Universal while there without a car, you can get a Ticket and Transport Option


They pick you up at your Disney Resort

Be sure to check Height requirements for Universal, we have found the Universal Parks to be lacking in Little Kid Friendly rides and can get thru both Parks in less than 1 day

You Can Not Add the Dining Plan unless you stay at a Disney Resort

Buzz is not at any of the Character Meals as of right now but can be seen in the Parks

The Disney Resort Room Discounts for May have not been released yet but I am hopeful they will be as good, if not better than the current ones that are good til April. There is free Dining available if you can check in on or after the 27th, very nice deal


For more Resort Info


May is a Lovely time to go

Edited: 08 December 2010, 23:04
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2. Re: Disney hotel or not?

I think Disney is great, and their hotels are pretty great (esp the higher up you gp) but I could not imagine staying there for a full 14 nights.

For that long I would want a condo resort nearby so I'd have access to a kitchen and a washer/dryer- eating out 2/3 meals a day for 14 days is not only expensive it woudl drive me crazy. And 5 in one room will be a hugh squeeze- 4 adulkts, one bathroom, 14 days isn't My idea of a holiday.

There are DVC disney condos, but they are very very pricy.

Have a look at Cypress Point, World Quest, Marriott Grand Cypress, Orange lake- there are loads of others.

Kelso, United...
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3. Re: Disney hotel or not?

The big questions are

1 - does your budget allow for 14 days in a Disney Resort?

2 - would 4 adults really want to stay and eat in a Disney Resort for 14 days?

You will have a car, as amanx suggests look at a villa/condo or if you really want to stay in a Disney Resort just have a few days there and move on to a villa/condo off site for the rest of your holiday.

May is a lovely time to visit and you will have more than enough time to do Universal as well

Worksop, United...
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for Orlando, Walt Disney World, Kissimmee
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4. Re: Disney hotel or not?

If your main focus of attention is to be Disney, then yes, absolutely, choose to stay in a Disney resort and forget the hire car. Use the saving on car rental and insurance and fuel to offset the slightly higher cost of staying on site.

There will be easily enough to keep you busy in Disney for two weeks, particularly if you take it at a leisurely pace - like doing a morning somewhere, afternoon chillaxing at the resort's pool, then back out in the evening (rather than killing yourself with full days).

And if you do feel the need to "escape" (eg for a spot of shopping, or for somewhere different to eat) then you can get a taxi fairly cheaply from DownTown Disney to, say, Premium Outlets Vineland or Lake Buena Vista Factory Stores - or even venture out on the (good, modern, cheap) city bus network to, say, the Florida Mall.

And, if you really must add to your experience (and expense!) by visiting Universal, take the transport + admission option linked above. Personally, for your first visit, I wouldn't pre-book anything off site. I'd start with the intention of letting Disney entertain me throughout.

Edited: 09 December 2010, 10:31
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5. Re: Disney hotel or not?

But, if you keep the car you can add in a visit or two to Florida's beautiful beaches and state parks.

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6. Re: Disney hotel or not?

I am a fan of staying off site. I can't bring myself to paying extra cost just for the convenience of Disney. You will find that your dollar gets you a lot more off site. 14 days is a very long time. I am sure you will not be spending 100% of your time there so any time away eats into the value of staying on site.

As for the dining plan, much like staying on site it is for convenience not savings. There is no way you would ever spend as much on meals as what the plan costs. Sure if you ate everything your could and went to all the Disney restaurants it might come up less, but people who are paying their own way would never do that.

With 4 adults and one child I would look at a vacation rental like Wyndham Bonnet Creek, Hilton grand vacations, etc. You can get a two bedroom with full kitchen, living room, washer/dryer (which will be handy for a 2 week trip) for $150-200 a night. The same type of room at Disney will run $400+.

New Windsor, NY
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7. Re: Disney hotel or not?

I agree with the other posters about being in a hotel room for 14 days. You should definitely look into a villa or house with a private pool for that many days. Eating out for 2 weeks is too long. Maybe break up your vacation with 1 week on Disney property and 1 week off....I think they are offering free dining starting May 27th since you mentioned that you want to go in May.

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8. Re: Disney hotel or not?

IMHO,Disney hotels while offering convenience,are a poor value. Especially with so many adults,you will be more comfortable with room to spread outand the ability to cook someof your meals-and disney does not offer this except at very high priced DVCs. We like the Residence Inn LBV,the Marriott Grande Vista LBV and the Doubletree Guest Suites at DTD. You cannot get the dining plan unless you are staying at a Disney hotel but this is no loss in our experience. The parks will be pretty busy in May since in some school districts in the US,vacation will have started but not wall to wall crowds.You won't need 14 days at Disney and Universal andSeaworld both have lots to offer

Benidorm, Spain
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9. Re: Disney hotel or not?

I am with amanx, eating at a Disney resort for 14 nights would drive me nuts.

We have just returned from Cypress Pointe Resort and it was excellent - I definitely recommend that you look into it.

New York
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10. Re: Disney hotel or not?

I love Disney, but would not stay at a resort in Disney for that long. Rent a condo or timeshare and go other places like Sea World, Coco Beach, Busch Gardens, Universal, etc. I don't think you need 14 days at Disney only. I usually spend a week there, and that includes only staying in the parks a few hours each day ( my daughters love going to the pool just as much as the park). I never stay in Disney, and found renting a car and eating outside of Disney so much better ( less money even with renting a car) and also the choice and quality of restaurants are so much better.