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View Full Version : Cost comparison on-site vs off


taylorcpa
05-27-2010, 10:02 AM
I am trying to do a comparison to see the cost difference between staying on site versus off site. Here's what I have so far:

Lodging
Disney Dining (plan for on site, OOP for off site)
Groceries
Parking
Tax/Tip for Disney dining

Am I missing anything? I am trying to compare a moderate (CSR), deluxe (WL), and a Windsor Hills townhome.

Thanks for your help!

MrsPete
05-27-2010, 10:15 AM
Don't forget the intangibles, the differences between an onsite trip and an offsite trip:

Staying on site you'll do more; you'll have the freedom to go to the parks early, return to your hotel for a mid-day break, and then head back to the parks to take advantage of the cooler evening hours (yes, you can do this staying off-site, but realistically, it's not as easy). You'll have transportation between parks, you'll never get lost in the maze of Disney streets, and you'll never get into a hot car. You may have access to some extra hours in the parks.

Staying off-site, you'll relax more. You'll have more space and privacy to spread out. You'll have access to a greater variety of inexpensive restaurants. Depending upon where you stay, you may have the ability to cook, and you may have great pools or other amenities. Unless you make expensive choices, you'll spend less staying off-site.

But, having done both, the two trips are very different. The question isn't just which is less expensive, it's also which trip do you want?

deerhart
05-27-2010, 10:29 AM
rental car
gas
parking (both at the offsite if applicable and at Disney)
any extras that may be charged at the offsite place (if at hotel, look for resort fees, charge for a fridge, etc)

don't forget to throw in the "costs" of availability of EMH, distance to and from where your staying to where you want to be, having to drive versus not driving, luggage collection, travel to and from the airport etc..

We realized long ago that it would probably save us a few dollars to stay off site, but the monetary cost is not enough to offset the non-monetary costs which are important to us. I BASK in the luxury of not having to drive a vehicle the entire time I am there (I spend way to much time driving my car for work). That alone is worth just about anything!

taylorcpa
05-27-2010, 10:39 AM
We will be driving so we won't need a rental car. I figure our gas would be about the same regardless.

I know there are intangibles for staying off site and on. I am so undecided that I am hoping for a LARGE price difference to sway me one way or another.

taylorcpa
05-27-2010, 10:41 AM
DUHH - forgot a big one - park tickets (but that price would be the same regardless)!!!

Golf4food
05-27-2010, 10:43 AM
We will be driving so we won't need a rental car. I figure our gas would be about the same regardless.

I know there are intangibles for staying off site and on. I am so undecided that I am hoping for a LARGE price difference to sway me one way or another.

How's $14 per day for parking if you stay off-site for large vs. free for on-site? ;)

Do you have seasonal or annual passes, by chance? Florida resident? There are discounts to factor in for those as well.


I agree that the intangibles are as much a reason that we stay on site as anything - proximity, themeing, quick access to everything, etc.

VAN
05-27-2010, 10:47 AM
I think I'd lean toward off-site if you are doing a lot of non-Disney things. Definitely, on-site if your trip is targeted to the WDW theme parks.

AllesonWonderland
05-27-2010, 11:41 AM
Windsor Hills is so close, I think you can easily get there at rope drop, take a break in the afternoon and come back in the evening without losing much time traveling. That's what we did both times we went to WDW.

PP's are correct, it all comes down to what you want your vacation to be. We saved so much staying offsite, even factoring in a rental car, parking, etc...I can't imagine my family cramming into 1 room to stay onsite. (But maybe hubby and I can go without the kids sometime to see what we're missing onsite. hee hee) But, some people don't want to have to think about cooking while on vacation, or making their own beds, or trying to find your way driving around unfamiliar places.

Our first trip was easy to see the savings of staying offsite. We went over Spring Break and there were no deals to be had onsite. This year I was a little nervous that I had made the wrong decision when 40% off sales, etc. started popping up, but we were a group of 9 this time, so after I found us enough rooms or large enough units onsite, we still did better with the 6 bedroom house we stayed at in Windsor Hills.

Have fun comparing!:goodvibes

cjnix29
05-27-2010, 11:47 AM
Don't forget the intangibles, the differences between an onsite trip and an offsite trip:

Staying on site you'll do more; you'll have the freedom to go to the parks early, return to your hotel for a mid-day break, and then head back to the parks to take advantage of the cooler evening hours (yes, you can do this staying off-site, but realistically, it's not as easy). You'll have transportation between parks, you'll never get lost in the maze of Disney streets, and you'll never get into a hot car. You may have access to some extra hours in the parks.

Staying off-site, you'll relax more. You'll have more space and privacy to spread out. You'll have access to a greater variety of inexpensive restaurants. Depending upon where you stay, you may have the ability to cook, and you may have great pools or other amenities. Unless you make expensive choices, you'll spend less staying off-site.

But, having done both, the two trips are very different. The question isn't just which is less expensive, it's also which trip do you want?


I have to agree with this. The two trips are very different. You will pay less staing off site. Especially if you have a family bigger than 4, big eaters, etc. Off site resort fees and parking are the two obvious ones you will have to pay. You can cook, have snacks, etc. in your room. But you still have to pay to eat no matter what, and there are economical ways to eat at Disney. The time factor is a big one. Parking, getting to and from the parks, etc. is more when you stay off site. But off site is a better value because you get a larger accomodation for a cheaper price.

The question really comes down to what kind of vacation you want. Having done both, can't really say which I prefer. Staying off site feels more like a "vacation" to me because we relax more. We have a condo, sit by the pool, see things other than Disney. Staying on site....I feel like it is go go go. I always feel like we have to be in the parks, or else we aren't getting our money's worth or aren't doing what we came for. To me, that is a big part of the cost factor.

as far as hidden costs....staying on site, you know what you pay for. Room rate, free transport, food, tickets, and whatever you spend on souveniers. Offsite...condo fees, resort fees?, parking, food, and whatever other activities you may want to do.

Tiana
05-27-2010, 12:00 PM
In 2006, we stayed on-site at Pop Century for 8 days, free dining, we drove down, no rental car.

In 2007, we stayed off-site at a 3 BR Condo at Wondsor Hills for 10 days, we flew in, got a rental car.

It did cost us less money in 2006. However, our trip in 2007 was above and beyond better than in 2006.

In 2007, we originally had booked a room at All-Star movies, with no dining plan; at the last minute, like 4 months way, I found out about Windsor Hills, added everything up and it would have cost us the exact same amount to stay at a Value resort than it would to stay in a THREE BEDROOM condo.... that was a no brainer for us. SO, it will definitely cost less, WAY less, to stay at Windsor Hills than at a moderate and definitely than at a deluxe.

As for parking $, I would pay DOUBLE that if it meant I didn't have to take those Disney buses!! In 2006, we were absolutely MISERABLE using the buses. We stood in line for over an HOUR!! most nights, then it took us 30 minutes to get to the hotel and then another 10 to walk to our rooms from the bus stop. In 2007, when we drove, it was heaven. We could get from any park to our condo is less than 15 min. flat. AK was only 5 minutes away, at best. Almost never had to wait for a parking lot tram, most days we got there early and didn't even need a tram. We were in our condo and probably in bed before we would have even stepped foot onto a bus!!

We got to the parks before rope drop, every day, and went back to the condo for lunch and a nap, almost every day.... again, I can make it back to the condo before the resort people get on a bus; so I don't know why people think that going back for a midday break is only possible on-site. :confused:

any extras that may be charged at the offsite place (if at hotel, look for resort fees, charge for a fridge, etc)

We paid $6 for a card to get access to the pool, and it was refundale. That was the only extra fee you will pay with a rental home. We had a full size fridge, stove and dishwasher with a fully stocked kitchen. AND a full size washer and dryer. Disney charges $10 a day for a small fridge at a value and how much does it cost to do laundry there????

You'll have transportation between parks, you'll never get lost in the maze of Disney streets, and you'll never get into a hot car.

You can look at Disney World on Google Maps and print it out before you go and it's REALLY easy to get there from Windsor Hills, we never got lost. Again, the car was hot when we got in it, but 2 minutes later the AC cooled it off.... it sure beats standing in the heat for an hour just to get on a bus ;)

EMH = that park will be really crowded that day. Stay away from parks that are holding EMH and they will be less crowded and you'll get the same amount of stuff done. :confused3

I also like having some healthy food at the condo to eat for lunch. I don't like to cook on vacation, but I also don't like to all that crappy food on-site all the time. We do the character breakfasts every other day and breakfast at the condo every other day. Lunches are mostly at the Condo for us and we ate dinner practically every night on-site at Disney and it didn't make us sick.

Seriously, I'm just as Disney fanatic as the next person and have been going regularly since I was 5 years old, but there is just NO WAY that you can say that onsite is that much better than off-site, ESPECIALLY if you stay at Windsor Hills. In 2011, we are renting a 5 bedroom house with it's own pool and hot-tub for only $220 a night; you can't even stay at a Deluxe (which is still ONE ROOM) for that... come on now....

taylorcpa
05-27-2010, 12:19 PM
Thank you Tiana for your post. Honestly, I don't know that I can stand to stay in the same room with my kids for an extended number of nights. It is good to hear from someone who has done both.

Jennifer in MI
05-27-2010, 12:25 PM
Seems like you've thought of almost everything! We have done both. We definitely spent less staying in a condo off property. The only park where it was a pain to get to was Magic Kingdom (park, take a tram, take the monorail). It took about 30 minutes door to door. Not too bad, but when it was 5 - 10 minutes for a couple of the other parks, that was hard to swallow!

They really are two different vacations! If you want a vacation where you aren't doing the things you normally do at home - clean, cook, laundry, etc - stay on property. If you don't mind doing some of that stuff, and want a bit more space - stay in a condo. Personally, we find the condo more relaxing just because there's SO much room for all of us! Now that we're a family of six, staying on property is VERY expensive.

Have fun with your decision!!!

ICF
05-27-2010, 12:32 PM
Im not sure you can put a cost on the extra space you would get if you stayed in an offsite condo / townhome. Sharing a 1 room 'house' with 3/4 people for a week isnt my idea of fun.

Also...it while it stinks having to pay $14 to park, with your own car you are on YOUR schedule and not waiting with hundreds of your closest friends to grab a seat on a bus when the parks close and the kids are tired and cranky. IMO, being crammed onto a bus next to sweaty / stinky strangers is overrated.

Looking forward to our week long stay in a Windor Hills townhouse in 10 days!!! 3Br / full kitchen and a private pool??? Cant beat that.

Trixiezzz
05-27-2010, 01:15 PM
We have done both and I do truly love staying onsite -- especially in a moderate or above.

But our last 2 visits we've stayed in a condo and driven our car to the park. I have to admit that on both trips we got back to our lodging WAY faster than waiting in those looooong lines for Pop Century.

I was surprised at how fast it was to catch the tram and then get our own car!

I had always viewed WDW buses as a plus, but have to say it was so nice to not be packed like sardines with my face in someone's folded stroller for that long ride back.

It's all your personal preferences. But my crew can never wake up early enough to use the morning EMH and we enjoy having a living room and access to a kitchen and washer/dryer. Now if I could afford a WDW villa, I'd be there in a minute!! :)

Edited to add:
Oh, and I forgot to add that we got a two-bedroom condo with separate living room (2 tvs) with full kitchen and washer/dryer for THE SAME PRICE PER NIGHT that our tiny 200-sq-ft room at Pop costed us. (I love lying in bed and NOT being able to touch the front door. LOL!)

mnrose
05-27-2010, 02:58 PM
Parking, getting to and from the parks, etc. is more when you stay off site.

Really? I disagree. We went to Disney twice in 2009. Stayed at POR one time, and rented a large home offsite the next. My time spent getting to and from the park (comparing when I walked out the gates in the evening and arrived at my accommodations, and reverse in the morning) was FAR less staying off site. I NEVER had to wait for a bus (which I always did using Disney busses...sometimes more, sometimes less, but always at least 5 minutes, average was more like 10-15, not including the walk to and from my room to the bus stop, add another 5 minutes to that). When I stayed off site (the Emerald place...whatever it's called..LOL), I was IN the park at AK in less than 15 minutes from getting into my car in the morning, and returning home. Epcot and DHS, about 20 minutes each, and MK was about 30 (by far the longest because of having to the TTC thing). And, in the evening, no wait to get in my car, drive home, and walk the 15 steps into the door. Believe me, after a long day at Disney, the last thing I wanted to do was stand around a bus stop, stand on the bus for the ride (often there are not seats) and then take that trek back to the room. And, I'm not an out of shape person in the least. It's just tiring.

Then, if you want to go sit by the pool at your resort, it's another trek. At our house, it was right there...a mere 10 steps from the house to in the pool. It was heaven.

Also, for us at least going back and forth in the middle of the day by car (to take a break) was a whole heck of lot easier than the time spent on busses in the middle of the day.

Bottom line, if you stay close to Disney, there is no difference (or even a difference IN FAVOR of off site) in travel time. This has been shown time and time again...witness the Unofficial Guide travel times.

Now, if you stay at a monorail resort, you will get to Epcot and MK faster on site, no question. However, you will have a far longer trip to DHS and AK than off site. And, of course, you will pay dearly for the privilege of staying at a monorail resort.

Purseval
05-27-2010, 05:41 PM
Anybody who thinks staying onsite is a deal compared to staying offsite has been snorting too much pixie dust. All they can offer is the "intangibles" of Disney Magic, which is their way of convincing themselves that all of that extra money, cramped space or both makes it worth staying onsite. They have too much invested to think otherwise.

If you want to stay onsite just to say you've done it that's a good enough reason. If you want to justify it costwise you're wasting your time. Embrace the magic and take lots of pictures.

deerhart
05-27-2010, 05:53 PM
EMH = that park will be really crowded that day. Stay away from parks that are holding EMH and they will be less crowded and you'll get the same amount of stuff done. :confused3


MK from 11pm-2am is not crowded at all! But if your not staying onsite, your not there to see that. In fact none of the parks DURING the EMH aren't crowded.

In my experience, staying away from EMH parks doesn't equate to a less crowded park at other palces (perhaps because everyone reads that and then avoids the emh park making the other parks just as crowded), but we tend to use the time DURING the emh regardless of what park we were at earlier that day.

abmitch01
05-27-2010, 06:11 PM
just came back from second stay at Windsor Hills. Love it there, no complaints, did not take long to get to the parks.

mrsklamc
05-27-2010, 06:25 PM
If you are looking at JUST cost, WH will win hands down.

Since you are talking about WH specifically, there are no resort fees and no need to worry about travel time. It will literally take you less than 10 min to get to any park (5 to AK), which can't be said for buses. It's very easy and there's no reason you should get lost.

Now, if it's going to bother you to organize meals and not have the beds made for you daily, that might be a concern. Though even if you didn't want to cook, you could still eat out cheaper off property.

PrincessDadx2
05-27-2010, 06:51 PM
MK from 11pm-2am is not crowded at all! But if your not staying onsite, your not there to see that. In fact none of the parks DURING the EMH aren't crowded.

In my experience, staying away from EMH parks doesn't equate to a less crowded park at other palces (perhaps because everyone reads that and then avoids the emh park making the other parks just as crowded), but we tend to use the time DURING the emh regardless of what park we were at earlier that day.

Truly hit or miss. I have seen MK MORE crowded at 11pm than it was during the day. It really doesn't clear out until around 1:30am. Epcot is always crowded - over 1 hour on Soarin with no fast passes available. Had good luck with AK in the offseason and DHS some. Early is always not crowded, late is crowded more often than not in my experience.

BellyBaby
05-27-2010, 07:16 PM
For those who tip the "Mousekeeping" staff on-site at the resort, it is also an expense. Not a huge one, mind you. Unless you have the unfortunate accident of giving away a $50 bill instead of a $5 bill, like another poster had! wups!

Whatever u do, have a good time with the family. :cutie:

Jen_in_NH
05-27-2010, 07:17 PM
Have you looked into renting DVC points? We did it for our last trip this past December, and the price was pretty good. We had looked at staying off site, since there were 9 of us. It was going to be about $200/night for a condo (I don't remember where we were looking), plus the $14/day to park, and the price to rent a car. We rented points for a 6 night stay in a 2 bedroom villa at Animal Kingdom Lodge for about $1600.

When we looked at the $1600 to stay on site in a 2 bedroom, versus the $1200 to stay off site, as well as $100 to park all week, and $100 or so to rent a car for the week, we chose on site.

Either way, you'll have a great trip! Enjoy yourselves :)

mrsklamc
05-27-2010, 07:23 PM
Jen- Was that a lower than average rate for the points? I thought it would be more but it's been awhile since I looked.

Jen_in_NH
05-27-2010, 07:40 PM
Jen- Was that a lower than average rate for the points? I thought it would be more but it's been awhile since I looked.

I rented them for $10 per point, and that seems to still be the price on the rent/trade board. We specifically picked a time in the lowest point season though, and stayed Sunday - Friday, to avoid the Saturday night.

mrodgers
05-27-2010, 08:49 PM
Wow, I just looked up this Windsor Hills place. The 3 bedroom is bigger than our whole house. I'm curious since I can't see any rate numbers, how much would it cost to stay at Windsor Hills for 6 nights in June for 3 bedrooms?

I found it comical the comments about "if you don't want to cook, laundry, and make the bed... stay onsite." I didn't know it was a worldly rule that you absolutely have to make a bed or that you have to cook and can't bring as much clothes with you if you stay off-site compared to on-site.

abmitch01
05-27-2010, 09:19 PM
for mid May, we paid $1800 total for a 5 bedroom with pool for 10 nights and divided it among 3 groups of family members. So for me and my two children, it was $600. The house was spotless, gorgeous and the pool fantastic

if you look on VRBO you can see prices. We rented directly from the owners though. There's a spot on the WH website where you can have the owner's contact you with quotes

Tiana
05-27-2010, 09:26 PM
Wow, I just looked up this Windsor Hills place. The 3 bedroom is bigger than our whole house. I'm curious since I can't see any rate numbers, how much would it cost to stay at Windsor Hills for 6 nights in June for 3 bedrooms?

I found it comical the comments about "if you don't want to cook, laundry, and make the bed... stay onsite." I didn't know it was a worldly rule that you absolutely have to make a bed or that you have to cook and can't bring as much clothes with you if you stay off-site compared to on-site.

We rent our stuff from Florida Sun Vacation Homes (.com). They have different rates for different units and time periods, just like Disney. The 3 BR we stayed in was during the "Mid" season and was $109 a night. You get a 15% discount for 7 or more nights and then you add tax. We are renting a 5BR house this time around and splitting it between 3 of us. It comes out to about $75 a night for each party. It has its own pool and hot tub in the back yard.

2 BR's start at $70-$80 a night, 3 BR's are like $90-$100, 3 BR townhomes are in the $120-$140 range (I think) 4-6 BR houses will rum $190-$270 a night, generally speaking, for "mid" season.

BuzznBelle'smom
05-28-2010, 07:11 AM
We love, love, LOVE staying off-site! Windsor Hills is fabulous. Sooo much nicer than cramming into a hotel room! We're seriously considering selling some of our DVC points--we like staying off-site THAT much!

Now, we're a family of 6, so we would need 2 hotel rooms, but it still would be a cramped situation in a hotel.

A few other thoughts--even if you don't want to cook and clean on vacations, just doing simple breakfasts can save a ton of money. We also like simple Mom-prepared meals (like spaghetti with jarred sauce and frozen meatballs, or sandwiches--that sort of thing). The kids like being able to snack at will. Heck, DH likes being able to go in the fridge and grab a lemonade or beer to enjoy by the pool.

For our family, the relaxation of off-site is priceless. having a pool literally 5 feet out the door is a huge draw. Other popular items--DD15 likes having her own bedroom with a private bath, DS12 likes the free movie and video game rentals. There's also free wi-fi where we stay (we do a 4BR house, it's ~1200 a week--you could go cheaper, definitely).

We've also really enjoyed expanding our "Orlando horizons" if you will--we've done Universal, Sea World, Gatorland, and a number of off-site restaurants.

We have annual passes and AAA, so we get free, up-close parking.

Now, I'm not knocking staying on-site. Our next trip will be 1 week of each. A 2BR DVC villa is roughly the same size as a 2BR codo or townhouse, and you do have the benefit of Disney transportation, EMH, etc. But, you pay for that--just understand that the cost is included. For us, a 2BR villa rental would be $3500 for a week--for much less space than we get off-site (that's based on $10 a point, to go in the summer).

Anyway, good luck with your decision. I would say, if you're a party of 4 or less, planning to do "commando touring", and will eat most meals in the parks, on-site is probably the way to go. If you want to relax, have more people, and want to save a few $$ by making a few simple meals--go off-site. Or do a split stay!

DisKim
05-28-2010, 08:21 AM
I have done both on site and off. I love being on site for the whole "Disney" experience. That being said, although I adored Beach Club last summer, I did not adore cramming all 6 on us (youngest was an infant) into one room. I had a pin code and was pricing out 2 rooms, FW cabins, etc. I am now staying in a 2 bedroom unit in Bonnet Creek for half of what I was quoted for those rooms. I have stayed in Windsor Hills and loved it there but I had it in my head that I wanted to be able to see July 4th fireworks from our hotel in order to avoid the park crowds. From what people say, you can request a fireworks view at Bonnet Creek. This seemed the perfect fit for me. We have 2 bedrooms, laundry, kitchen, etc. and we still get the resort feel. BTW, $14 per day to park does not outweigh our savings. In addition, we don't do EMH because my kids can't get up early enough or stay up late enough, so we will just avoid those parks. I usually go to the park that had EMH the day before. That generally works out well for us. Also, having a kitchen will help us stick to our diet. We are still doing our favorite onsite meals though! Also, no one mentioned this, but having a car gives you more freedom in choosing meals. I remember trying to get to Boma from POR without a car. It took forever! As a previous poster said, parking actually takes a lot less time at all the parks with the exception of MK. However, my kids like getting to choose the monorail or the boat. It's part of the whole experience and doesn't bother us. Good luck with your decision. Remember, it's Disney - you'll have fun no matter what!:wizard:

TnTWalter
05-28-2010, 08:31 AM
after doing offsite last summer...it's going to be REALLY REALLY hard to get me back onsite...

We are a family of 5 which severely limits where we can stay....2 rooms at POP, crammed into a POR room, paying crazy amounts for the ASM suite with fold-out beds for kids or expensive cabin or the fabulous but costly Poly, etc.

I have received at least 4 pin codes since last summer......and try as I might to make it 'close' I can't....

the last 40% off any category was tempting but again....need 2 rooms at value or 1 room POR....and it's still cheaper offsite....

We did Windsor Hills 3 bedroom condo...tons of room...amazing uncrowded pool....we actually got to and from FASTER than the buses [I didn't believe this when people would say it]...

We didn't hop...we went home in afternoon to swim chill etc. and then went back to same park for evenings....

Obviously can't do dining plan....but we did it twice before our oldest became and adult and they stopped including tips. I don't think dining plan is as cost effective as it used to be personally....

I did miss the nice sit down meals but not that much!

We stayed the longest this time 8 days 7 nights and it was the cheapest!!

We did drive so we didn't have rental car price to add in....

Trish

TnTWalter
05-28-2010, 08:36 AM
I rented them for $10 per point, and that seems to still be the price on the rent/trade board. We specifically picked a time in the lowest point season though, and stayed Sunday - Friday, to avoid the Saturday night.

5 nights 6 days is Sun-Friday....



For all:
I've looked into points too.....if you can do a studio [family of 4 or less] it's a MUCH better deal than the regular resorts and you get to stay deluxe and can get dining plan without having to buy tix.

I was just checking rates and they're $10 a point now....

If you're a family of 5 or more you have to do 1 bedroom or more. It says 4 for 1 bedroom but they allow 5 legally in 1 bedrooms.


But we did a 3 bedroom condo for $450 for 7 nights 8 days...Sat-Sat.....
see there's the rub...how do you beat that?

Oy....I will do onsite again....just have to 'suck it up' and know it's not for the value. LOL.


Trish

crisi
05-28-2010, 08:39 AM
We own DVC and I've always been an onsite snob. But I've stayed offsite for conferences and visited Disney and you can get a LOT more room for a LOT less money offsite than on. If I were buying DVC today, I wouldn't - we'd condo offsite.

In ten years we've taken advantage of EMH maybe four times. We don't rent a car and fly in - so Disney transportation (plus a cab here and there to avoid those long bus lines at closing) is wonderful.

Disney is also a place where more days become practically free for tickets (at what, five or six days?). If you have the TIME (i.e. vacation time), and are driving, you can often get a much longer trip for the same money.

I'd also look at cancellation policies - which is why I'd discourage anyone from renting DVC points - at least without adding on insurance - cancellation policies on DVC aren't great and owners don't often give you much flexibility if you need to cancel.

TnTWalter
05-28-2010, 01:48 PM
We own DVC and I've always been an onsite snob. But I've stayed offsite for conferences and visited Disney and you can get a LOT more room for a LOT less money offsite than on. If I were buying DVC today, I wouldn't - we'd condo offsite.

In ten years we've taken advantage of EMH maybe four times. We don't rent a car and fly in - so Disney transportation (plus a cab here and there to avoid those long bus lines at closing) is wonderful.

Disney is also a place where more days become practically free for tickets (at what, five or six days?). If you have the TIME (i.e. vacation time), and are driving, you can often get a much longer trip for the same money.

I'd also look at cancellation policies - which is why I'd discourage anyone from renting DVC points - at least without adding on insurance - cancellation policies on DVC aren't great and owners don't often give you much flexibility if you need to cancel.

good advice crisi

TnTWalter
05-28-2010, 02:44 PM
since there are a few threads on this it got me thinking about it...

so as we were driving today, I asked my kiddos what their fave place at Disney was...Poly? Pop? or Windsor Hills....now to be fair only my oldest remembers POP.

They all preferred Poly for the monorail, and it was 'relaxing'. They all preferred Windsor hills for the pool and they had their own rooms.

In the end I told them to pick one....it was a toss up for my oldest, she can never decide. My middle LOVED the Poly, and my youngest said 'I don't care. I just want to go to Disney...'

so there is my official poll result!

Ha Ha.

I would still love to try a moderate. I want to do Caribbean Beach....I think we'll drag someone else along to justify 2 rooms at a moderate! LOL.

Trish

BuzznBelle'smom
05-28-2010, 02:49 PM
I jsut want to add--where the cost comparisons are even close, it's generally with a family of 4 or less. For these families, onsite with a code, etc. can be a deal, especially if you don't mind Disney transportation and aren't picky about the size of the beds (values have full size, I believe).

As I mentioned, we're a family of 6--and DH really likes his king bed. DVC 1BR and up offer king beds, and a number of offsite choices do, as well. I also find that my gang gets along better with the additional space. One time, we inadvertently booked a 1BR AKL villa (youngest was 2.5, so it was "legal"). I wouldn't do it again or recommend it. We were cramped, you couldn't move in the living area when the beds were open, everyone was snapping at each other. A 1BR is the same size as 2 regular hotel rooms, so that tells me that a "vacation" needs more room for us.

crisi
05-28-2010, 02:51 PM
Disney is also a place where more days become practically free for tickets (at what, five or six days?). If you have the TIME (i.e. vacation time), and are driving, you can often get a much longer trip for the same money.

To expand on this - if someone were saying "I have three days at Disney, where should I stay" - my advice would be "stay on the monorail" - time is of the essence with a very short trip - time becomes much more valuable than money (as long as you have the money to spend).

If someone were saying - "we have two weeks" - get yourself a condo or home offsite! Time becomes much less constrained and the space offsite - even over a DVC room - is far superior. And with that much time, the appeal of other Orlando area attractions and the need to eat a homecooked meal increase.

scoobydoo2010
07-02-2010, 10:30 PM
This webpage has a good guide of a vacation home vs.a resort hotel set-up.

http://www.magicalvacationhomes.com/vacation_home_vs_hotel.htm

I think it is all the little things that add up, plus I prefer having our own place for privacy! :yay:

torinsmom
07-02-2010, 11:16 PM
Wow, I just looked up this Windsor Hills place. The 3 bedroom is bigger than our whole house. I'm curious since I can't see any rate numbers, how much would it cost to stay at Windsor Hills for 6 nights in June for 3 bedrooms?

I found it comical the comments about "if you don't want to cook, laundry, and make the bed... stay onsite." I didn't know it was a worldly rule that you absolutely have to make a bed or that you have to cook and can't bring as much clothes with you if you stay off-site compared to on-site.

We stayed in a 3 bedroom Emerald Island townhome June 18-25 and it was only $450 for the whole week! Lots of room, full kitchen, washer/dryer and really close to the clubhouse/pool. It took us between 5 and 15 minutes to get to all the WDW parking lots. We had to pay for parking, but we left every day at lunch and came back in the evening. This is the one we stayed in
http://www.vacationhomerentals.com/vacation-rentals/Kissimmee-Florida-vacation-rental-townhouse-proID-42665.html

When we stayed at Pop,we had to walk to the bus stop in the morning, wait for a bus, maybe 2, before we had a spot, and likely had to stand up. When we were ready to leave, we had to wait in a killer line again for that bus and then walk a mile back to our room. I'm sorry, but it's worth $14/day to park to avoid that mess! And not having a fridge or a microwave really did suck. When we wanted something, we had to walk all the way to the main building to get it.

Besides, I saved at least $250 over staying at Pop, so what's $98 in parking fees? We saved more money by eating offsite, and driving over to Target(2 miles from EI) when we needed to buy ponchos, snacks, etc. It was a very relaxing to be able to spread out. DS brought his Xbox and played that when we took a break, and I sat on our little patio and read, or watched tv, or used the FREE internet. It was really awesome! We will never stay onsite again!

Oh, and who needs EMH? We managed to do everything we wanted and never waited more than 20 minutes. This was summer crowds times, so I imagine it would be even easier other times.

Marsha

Planogirl
07-02-2010, 11:21 PM
I jsut want to add--where the cost comparisons are even close, it's generally with a family of 4 or less. For these families, onsite with a code, etc. can be a deal, especially if you don't mind Disney transportation and aren't picky about the size of the beds (values have full size, I believe).

As I mentioned, we're a family of 6--and DH really likes his king bed. DVC 1BR and up offer king beds, and a number of offsite choices do, as well. I also find that my gang gets along better with the additional space. One time, we inadvertently booked a 1BR AKL villa (youngest was 2.5, so it was "legal"). I wouldn't do it again or recommend it. We were cramped, you couldn't move in the living area when the beds were open, everyone was snapping at each other. A 1BR is the same size as 2 regular hotel rooms, so that tells me that a "vacation" needs more room for us.
Actually, it's normally just my son and I and I don't ever save a bit by staying onsite. I admit that I do have trouble getting discounted rooms when we go though. The dining plan actually ends up being more expensive with just the two of us.

I do like the moderates or deluxes onsite though. I'll be back when I finally find a good deal. ;)