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View Full Version : does anyone stay off site anymore?


Jenfrog79
02-20-2008, 11:33 AM
it seems like all i read is people staying in the disney resorts or timeshare/condos. we're staying at the comfort inn lake buena vista. the resorts just seem so expensive. its just going to be DH and I and we'll be spending all our time at the parks anyway. I just don't see the need to spend all the extra money on a resort i'll never be at.

TinkerBellToo2
02-20-2008, 11:52 AM
it seems like all i read is people staying in the disney resorts or timeshare/condos. we're staying at the comfort inn lake buena vista. the resorts just seem so expensive. its just going to be DH and I and we'll be spending all our time at the parks anyway. I just don't see the need to spend all the extra money on a resort i'll never be at.


We have in the past stayed off property and we have even stayed at the Comfort Inn in Lake Buena Vista. But let me tell you nothing beats staying at a vacation villa for almost the same price. For the last 2 years we have stayed on Rt 27 just off 192 at Legacy Park. for $600 dollars a week we have a 4 bedroom 3 bath home with internet service and the best thing is we have our own pool. Just can't beat it after a long day at the parks to come back to the villa and relax by the pool with lots of spirits and food. Try it you might like it....... By the way there are only 2 of us also but boy all that room.

Miss Stitch
02-20-2008, 12:03 PM
We always stay off-site. Like you, we only crash in our room to sleep at the end of the day, as long as it's clean and comfortable we don't mind, although the right location is important. We don't drive, but if we did I'd love to stay in a villa and have all that space, but there would no housekeeping to clean up after me, change my bed etc.:rotfl:

We always have a great time staying off-site, and our main reason is that we like to visit other attractions in Orlando, Universal etc. and being cocooned in Disney is not ideal for non-drivers like us. It is also cheaper to stay off-site although I spend all that I save on souveniers and stuff.

Every body has different ideas of what a good vacation is and if we all wanted to stay at a Disney resort, there wouldn't be any rooms left for anyone.

Im sure that you will enjoy your trip just as much off-site as on-site, maybe more if you spend a little time checking out the other things Orlando has to offer.

sympatico
02-20-2008, 12:05 PM
This debate was just on here a few days ago. Go to this thread:
http://www.disboards.com/showthread.php?t=1704859

Off site for us in a vacation home. :love:

Gillian
02-20-2008, 12:06 PM
We haven't stayed in an offsite hotel in a long, long time. We have stayed at Cypress Pointe Grande villas (time share but we just rented from a company) and windsor palms twice (rented from management company).

With just 2 people I'd probably do a hotel with a king bed, or a condo if it had a jacuzzi tub (so worth it!). The disney onsite value hotels are fine for 2 people, and our room at POP century was $65 last time, cheap enough to make onsite worth it.

I don't know when you're going or how much the comfort inn costs. How does it compare in cost to a value resort? Don't forget to add in the cost of parking daily. With an AAA discount or some other code (watch the resorts board for discounts) it might be close.

utahkennedys
02-20-2008, 12:57 PM
We are leaving tomorrow and staying first at Old Key West, then Marriott Cypress Harbour. I think we'll try to stay on site exclusively in the future, here is why:

1. Rental cars for the week are $500-600 with discounts...somehow I managed to get one on Priceline for $160. Still, I can't roll the dice in the future needing a car at those crazy costs!

2. Magical Express - it is SO nice not touching our luggage once we leave our home airport, not waiting in the rental car line, not having to put in 2 carseats, move my own luggage, etc.

3. Extra Magic Hours - enough said!

4. Disney Dining Plan - this is our first time trying it, so we'll see how it works out.

Anyhow, I am not sure the off site savings add up for our family anymore...which is why we own DVC.

Jenfrog79
02-20-2008, 01:19 PM
i'm not sure how much the comfort inn was for us because we booked through a travel agent with both airfare and hotel. we got both airfare and hotel for 2 people the last week in april for 1150(oh yes and including transfers to hotel/airport). Through the travel agent i saw even if we went with a value resort it was still a couple hundred dollars more. i'd rather spend that on souvenirs :)

FayeW
02-20-2008, 02:44 PM
We are leaving tomorrow and staying first at Old Key West, then Marriott Cypress Harbour. I think we'll try to stay on site exclusively in the future, here is why:

1. Rental cars for the week are $500-600 with discounts...somehow I managed to get one on Priceline for $160. Still, I can't roll the dice in the future needing a car at those crazy costs!




What on earth are you renting, to get quotes that high?

I got a deal for my friend at Alamo for less than $100. for a week, and I am always under $200 for 10 days.

Brian Noble
02-20-2008, 03:04 PM
I'm wondering the same thing. I just looked on Orbitz, and a midsize for next week, saturday-to-saturday from Dollar is $275, all-in. That's before finding any discount codes, etc.

My National Emerald Aisle reservation for the same week is $235 for 8 days.

utahkennedys
02-20-2008, 07:34 PM
The prices have dropped in the last few days, which is also why I got a deal on priceline. In the past, we have always paid under $100 for a week, and this time we needed 2 cars and until a few days ago, they were $500-600. I know how to find deals, so this was very scary! I am also an advance planner so I wouldn't want to wait until the last minute and risk getting a car at a reasonable price. I have always been able to rent way ahead for great prices, except this trip, and I've searched since June. Just one more bonus for on-site -- less risk.

kmccartney
02-20-2008, 10:40 PM
it seems like all i read is people staying in the disney resorts or timeshare/condos. we're staying at the comfort inn lake buena vista. the resorts just seem so expensive. its just going to be DH and I and we'll be spending all our time at the parks anyway. I just don't see the need to spend all the extra money on a resort i'll never be at.

We stay off property, and we always stay at the Lake Buena Vista Comfort Inn. We stay there for two reasons... We stay free because my husband is an Elite Choice Priveledges Member because he travels a lot for work, which means we always have enough points to stay free. The other reasons that we stay there is because it is clean and secure and close to Disney.

So, yes, we lose out on the staying on property thrill, but we save a lot of money staying off. And honestly, we spend almost no time in our hotel and all of our time in the parks.

One tip... If you download an Orlando Magic Card, there is an additional discount offered by the hotel.

luke
02-21-2008, 03:29 AM
I've only ever stayed offsite at WDW, and only ever onsite at DLRP!!

For me i'd rather pay the kind of money that is paid for Value resorts on slightly better offsite hotels (last year we stayed at Radisson Resort Celebration, this year at the Hyatt Regency Grand Cyress)

:goodvibes

SnowWtch
02-21-2008, 08:30 AM
We're staying offsite March 7-10 b/c we're going to a convention at the convention center but we're also doing WDW and UO/IOA. It just made more sense to stay halfway between. We're going to stay at the Holiday Inn and Suites on Universal Blvd. My parents are there the same weekend for a different convention/show and they're staying down the street at the Country Inn and Suites b/c they're doing the same thing we are and it made more sense to stay halfway between. We all live only 2 hours away so we drive down as often as we can for a quick weekend.

jodifla
02-21-2008, 08:36 AM
it seems like all i read is people staying in the disney resorts or timeshare/condos. we're staying at the comfort inn lake buena vista. the resorts just seem so expensive. its just going to be DH and I and we'll be spending all our time at the parks anyway. I just don't see the need to spend all the extra money on a resort i'll never be at.

If you are going to be just pounding the parks all day, it doesn't matter so much where you stay.

But if you go all the time, the parks become less important, and where you stay becomes more important.

And to me, there's always been much more magic when I've stayed onsite, starting as a little kid. I remember ALL the trips where we stayed onsite much more vividly than when we did a day trip from Tampa, or stayed at a motel on 192.

So now I'm a DVC member, and haven't stayed offsite since '96.

cbear5
02-21-2008, 07:48 PM
We are staying onsite for 6 nights, and then we have rented a villa for 9 nights. DH wanted to stay onsite and I wanted the villa so we compromised!
However, I am looking for a nice hotel near MCO for the night before we fly home. Any Suggestions?

Carrie

kty
02-21-2008, 07:55 PM
nice and convenient hotel at MCO would be the hyatt. kinda pricey, but you can find a good deal on hotwire. :thumbsup2

Reflection
02-21-2008, 09:34 PM
My family last stayed onsite at WDW in '05--a 1 bdrm at OKW. The past two years, and for this year, we're offsite again, although, for this year, I may opt for two nights onsite if an AP rate is available during our dates.

I prefer space to stretch out and you can get great deals on extremely nice offsite villas/condos. Our visits to Orlando always include Universal and IOA, and we always stay onsite there. The front-of-line-access is the kind of magic I like!:thumbsup2

Girlpower
02-22-2008, 09:19 AM
We're staying at Bahama Bay on Highway 27...stayed there last year, and loved it! We may consider onsite in a few years, but the kids are 3 & 5 so for now, offsite is the best for us.

Brian Noble
02-22-2008, 09:23 AM
The Marriot MCO was perfectly acceptable.
http://www.marriott.com/hotels/travel/mcoap-orlando-airport-marriott/

disneysteve
02-22-2008, 09:27 AM
it seems like all i read is people staying in the disney resorts or timeshare/condos.

I see no reason to stay in a regular hotel when we can get a timeshare or condo for the same price but with far greater amenities. For $40/night through SkyAuction, we can get a 2-bedroom, 2-bath timeshare unit with a full kitchen, living room/dining room, screened patio and washer/dryer. Why would we stay anywhere else?

Magalex
02-22-2008, 11:55 AM
Since 1994(when the value resorts started to be built on property) we have stayed on WDW property. But I am always interested and willing to try a Downtown Disney Hotel. I think the Doubletree Guest Suites would be nice. They always have fair solid reviews even from die hard onsite visitors. I think the suite would be great with our 7 yr old DS. But he does love those Disney resort food courts which are so convenient.

selmuir
02-22-2008, 12:07 PM
Quality inn plaza!!! :D

rosiep
02-22-2008, 12:35 PM
I see no reason to stay in a regular hotel when we can get a timeshare or condo for the same price but with far greater amenities. For $40/night through SkyAuction, we can get a 2-bedroom, 2-bath timeshare unit with a full kitchen, living room/dining room, screened patio and washer/dryer. Why would we stay anywhere else?Here's why I stay somewhere else:
1)I don't want to do my own housekeeping on vacation
2)I don't like driving
3)but mostly...I love ROOM SERVICE:rotfl: :rotfl:I've stayed off site, I've stayed onsite at Disney Resorts and I've stayed onsite at the DTD properties....Cheapest off site..but I don't like driving. The DTD hotels end up costing as much as a Disney Moderate when you factor in "resort fees" and airport transportation. So, from now on it's the CSR for me!!!!

disneysteve
02-22-2008, 01:14 PM
[/I][/B]Here's why I stay somewhere else:1)I don't want to do my own housekeeping on vacation2)I don't like driving3)but mostly...I love ROOM SERVICE

That's the great thing about the Disney area. Lots of choices.

Us - We hate having a maid come into our room everyday and mess with stuff. How much cleaning really needs to be done? We aren't trashing the place - just sleeping and showering.

We love driving. We drive to Disney from NJ and do our own driving while there. Can't stand dealing with buses. Even when we've stayed onsite, we still drove everywhere we went.

rosiep
02-22-2008, 01:20 PM
You're exactly right Steve! That is the wonderful thing about Disney. I never question why anyone would choose to stay someplace different..I'm just glad the options exist!

davinakb
02-22-2008, 03:55 PM
We still stay off site; get the big condo/timeshare/villa for a great deal, have all the room we need, are close to property; save $. FWIW.

disneysteve
02-22-2008, 05:40 PM
We still stay off site; get the big condo/timeshare/villa for a great deal, have all the room we need, are close to property; save $. FWIW.

In fact, offsite we can be even CLOSER to the parks than if we stayed onsite. The timeshare we've stayed in 3 of our last 4 trips was a 4-minute drive to Animal Kingdom and a 7-minute drive to MGM. There is no way you'd get there that quickly if you were on property. You'd spend more time than that waiting for a bus or, in one of the large resorts, just walking from your room to the bus stop.

FayeW
02-22-2008, 05:48 PM
Steve, I've read your trip and budgeting reports in the past, but I've never seen you mention a visit to the Universal parks. Has your family ever visited US/IOA? Mere idle curiosity, that's all...

disneysteve
02-22-2008, 06:54 PM
Steve, I've read your trip and budgeting reports in the past, but I've never seen you mention a visit to the Universal parks. Has your family ever visited US/IOA? Mere idle curiosity, that's all...

Universal? What's that?

Just kidding. Inside joke around our house. No, we have never visited US/IOA. We would like to sometime but since we only get to go to Disney for 1 week each year, we just never want to take the time away from Disney. As it is, we feel so strapped and don't get to do half of what we'd like to at Disney.

I think sometime soon, maybe in 2009, we will do a 2-week visit in late summer. If so, we might possibly spare a day to see Universal on that trip, though we might not.

Grog
02-22-2008, 08:02 PM
Our last trip to WDW we rented a house in Kissimmee and liked it so much we're going to do it again for our next trip. We were only about ten minutes from the parks and parking was no problem. The only thing we missed was package delivery, but with a little bit of planning and careful shopping we made do.

kydisneyfans
02-23-2008, 05:36 AM
I see no reason to stay in a regular hotel when we can get a timeshare or condo for the same price but with far greater amenities. For $40/night through SkyAuction, we can get a 2-bedroom, 2-bath timeshare unit with a full kitchen, living room/dining room, screened patio and washer/dryer. Why would we stay anywhere else?


I absolutely agree here. Driving 10 minutes to a park and not having maid service more than offsets the $200+ per night that I am saving by staying offsite. In most cases, by the time your Disney resort bus shows up at the stop, I can be back at my car and in my resort parking lot, even if it is 2 miles offsite.

FayeW
02-23-2008, 08:55 AM
Universal? What's that?

Just kidding. Inside joke around our house. No, we have never visited US/IOA. We would like to sometime but since we only get to go to Disney for 1 week each year, we just never want to take the time away from Disney. As it is, we feel so strapped and don't get to do half of what we'd like to at Disney.

I think sometime soon, maybe in 2009, we will do a 2-week visit in late summer. If so, we might possibly spare a day to see Universal on that trip, though we might not.

I don't know what types of rides or shows your family enjoys at WDW, but I can tell you that my family prefers US/IOA. Most of the rides and attractions are top notch, but just like WDW, some of the older rides are showing their age. Not in terms of the condition and upkeep, but the relevance and technology is a little dated (I am sure if they were to build JAWS now, the shark would be a lot more realistic, etc). I feel the same about star tours and Honey, I Shrunk the Audience. When you compare them to Mickey's Philharmagic, well, there's no comparison.

I hope you can fit in a trip over to the wild side sooner rather than later. You will have a great time (unless WDW is all about the nostalga for your family).

mlbudach
02-23-2008, 06:11 PM
We've been staying offsite. Can't afford to stay onsite. Its cheaper plus the rooms at a lot of the hotels are very nice. We like to go to restaurants and other attractions so we've been staying offsite. My parents always stayed offsite too. I would however like to try staying at a Disney resort just to see how it is. To see if it is that much better. I just can get myself to pay the extra.

TotoToo
02-23-2008, 07:55 PM
To OP - the real question should be "Does anyone still pay to stay on site?" The value is clearly with off Disney stays and adds easier access to the many other attractions of Orlando not tied to the Mouse. We outgrew our desire to be 100% mouse 10 years ago. Now 1-5% on any trip is enough. And if we plan to do movies, after hours stuff we'll always pick the far superior City Walk to the overpriced Pleasure Island. No comparison between those two. Universal got it right & Disney got the leftovers like Planet Hollywood.

Gillian
02-24-2008, 10:22 AM
i'm not sure how much the comfort inn was for us because we booked through a travel agent with both airfare and hotel. we got both airfare and hotel for 2 people the last week in april for 1150(oh yes and including transfers to hotel/airport). Through the travel agent i saw even if we went with a value resort it was still a couple hundred dollars more. i'd rather spend that on souvenirs :)

Agreed that for the difference from your TA you're better off where you are.

Airfare can vary a lot, but next time you might be able to do better booking on your own. Although sometimes packages are a good deal, shopping around separately for deals on airfare and hotels is usually worth the effort.

For example, if you're comparing to the Value resorts, and if we figure that you're going in Regular season and are an AAA member (which many people are not, but it's a readily available discount) a room at Pop Century would be $85 per night, or ~$96 with tax for 7 nights the total is $673. It includes transfers. Using your $1150 price, that gives you $477 for two plane tickets, which is probably enough (a little over $200 each plus tax). But you won't get breakfast, and you'll have to buy what you eat at Disney unless you bring stuff with you. You'll spend more on food but will have an easier time getting around.

You'll have a great time, no matter what! It's just that there are so many of us here who like to search for great deals, that we want everyone else to do the same thing. Crazy overplanners. :)

ruadisneyfan2
02-25-2008, 10:35 AM
My family last stayed onsite at WDW in '05--a 1 bdrm at OKW. The past two years, and for this year, we're offsite again, although, for this year, I may opt for two nights onsite if an AP rate is available during our dates.

I prefer space to stretch out and you can get great deals on extremely nice offsite villas/condos. Our visits to Orlando always include Universal and IOA, and we always stay onsite there. The front-of-line-access is the kind of magic I like!:thumbsup2

yeah baby!!::yes::
Now that's some onsite perk worth paying for. I love being able to walk to the parks from the hotels and they're all 4* deluxe. Their annual pass rates are awesome too. We love it so much now, our last Orlando visit was exclusively US/IOA. It really is a whole different flavor when you stay onsite whereas I don't really feel that way with WDW. jmho. We were so spoiled after our 1st time, my ds7 complained at MK over a 20 min. wait. :rotfl:
You feel like a VIP!

MiaSRN62
02-25-2008, 12:00 PM
What on earth are you renting, to get quotes that high?

I got a deal for my friend at Alamo for less than $100. for a week, and I am always under $200 for 10 days.
I was suprised by the car rental rates this summer too ! Last year it was much cheaper.

I am staying in FL from Aug 3-19 this year. That is 16 nights. I wish I had more DVC points left in my bank to stay onsite so I could save the $579 cost of a car. I tried Alamo, Dollar, Budget, National, Avis----used every code I could find. Then tried reserving through Southwest....Orbits....other car rental places.
I'm getting anywhere from $590--$787. I need a full size car because of amount of people and luggage we have. I am using my Vistana timeshare week for part of the stay---so this is a whole week I need to rent a car (and pay for parking at the theme parks daily). Now the remainder of the stay I need the car because we'll be at Disney's Vero Beach---no disney transportation there and we need to get back and forth to my dd's college campus that week for orientation. So I need the car for that. But I so wished I could stay onsite for the first week in wdw so as to not need a rental among the other perks.

its just going to be DH and I and we'll be spending all our time at the parks anyway. I just don't see the need to spend all the extra money on a resort i'll never be at.
And that's just it Jenfrog....you know what works best for you and what your personal preferences are in a vacation.
Even though we've been to WDW well over 30 times (I stopped counting), we prefer onsite. I like the onsite perks....the free transportation.....Magical Express......and the wonderful themeing of the resorts. Last year, we didn't stay in the parks all day---we don't do commando anymore. Got there early in the am, then went back in the PM after dinner. We're AP holders and sometimes we're just content to pop into a park for a few hours a day.

During the entire middle of the day we have lounged around at the Wilderness Lodge. Sat around the pool........on the beach....looking out over Bay Lake. I could just stay there at that resort and never step foot into the parks. It's so beautiful to us. In the past, we've also enjoyed OKW, BWV and this year we are trying AKV. Many of the offsite places, while very nice, seem so cookie-cutter to me ? I know many love having a rental home....but, personally, that's not for us. We prefer a resort-like setting. Staying in a home is just too much like not ever leaving home. And I know many would disagree....but that's fine. I'm just offering our reasons for our preference for staying onsite.

So everyone knows what works for their specific needs and tastes. To us, the resort we stay at (after so many trips there), is just as important as everything else. Sure we still do the theme parks, but not as commando style as we used to (and by that I mean staying in the parks the majority of the day). It's nice Orlando has something to offer everyone. Have a great stay at the Comfort Suites.

englishteacha
02-26-2008, 07:05 AM
We've rented a condo on our last 2 stays for less than most offsite hotels, and definitely less than onsite at a value resort. For us, as long as it's comfy and clean and not too far a drive, we're happy offsite. Someday we might stay onsite, but it's quite nice to have a kitchen and the options available for food offsite. We can only travel if we're careful with our money. Part of the fun is the bargain hunt!

skmommy
02-26-2008, 08:54 AM
I totally agree with the previous poster that part of the fun is the bargain hunt-- in fact it may be most of the fun in the planning stage of the vacation. I love to see how nice a place we can get for the best price- the townhouse we had at Winsdor Hills this January was so nice that we are going back next January and renting a 5 bedroom home (my parents are joining us). We really don't need all that space, but we wanted a private pool and spa and love the idea of a game room. The house really looks nicer than our house so we still feel pampered and "on vacation" and at ~$152/night it is amazing when compared to the prices of the onsite resorts ($192/night for WL) for just a small hotel room.

The on vs off site debate all really seems to come down to personal preferences, but I think more people would try offsite if they knew how easy it is to rent from owners -- the Disney marketing division is genius about promoting onsite so I think that gets a lot of people who don't obsessively research all the details like some of us on the boards (me for one).

Disneygirl26
02-26-2008, 02:09 PM
Universal? What's that?

Just kidding. Inside joke around our house. No, we have never visited US/IOA. We would like to sometime but since we only get to go to Disney for 1 week each year, we just never want to take the time away from Disney. As it is, we feel so strapped and don't get to do half of what we'd like to at Disney.

I think sometime soon, maybe in 2009, we will do a 2-week visit in late summer. If so, we might possibly spare a day to see Universal on that trip, though we might not.

I know I'm going to get flamed for this but the family and I went Oct 07 for 8 days did universal/Ioh 4days (you know they have the 85.00 special) 7days both parks, we had so much fun I wish we would have went sooner.

disneysteve
02-26-2008, 02:57 PM
I know I'm going to get flamed for this but the family and I went Oct 07 for 8 days did universal/Ioh 4days (you know they have the 85.00 special) 7days both parks, we had so much fun I wish we would have went sooner.

No flames here. We love amusement parks. I'm sure we would love US/IOA. We just hate to give up the time at Disney to go there. I would really like to check it out one of these days. Actually, I've heard they are building a Harry Potter area. I told DW we'd go once that opened.

ruadisneyfan2
02-26-2008, 03:23 PM
I know I'm going to get flamed for this but the family and I went Oct 07 for 8 days did universal/Ioh 4days (you know they have the 85.00 special) 7days both parks, we had so much fun I wish we would have went sooner.
Why should you get flamed? You can love both, unless you're married to Mickey! :lmao:
We also love SW and KSC. There's so much to do in Orlando. I think it's kind of sad to just limit yourself to WDW. jmho.
I also think annual passes at US/IOA are much more reasonably priced and knocks about $100/nt. off their onsite hotels. They are also only $99/yr to renew. While it's only 2 parks vs. 4 for WDW, it's still a bargain.
You should visit the US boards. There's a wealth of information there.