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View Full Version : Results of my cost comparison - LONG!!


taylorcpa
05-28-2010, 10:25 AM
OK, I am an accountant so I naturally can come up with wonderful spreadsheets so that I can compare things. If you remember, I asked for feedback about including items to do a cost comparison between onsite at CSR and WL and a condo at Windsor Hills. Forgive me if it is long. This is for two adults and two Disney kids

On Site assumptions - park tickets and tax (no parkhopping), regular dining plan, $300 for tax & tips on meals, $50 for groceries, seven nights lodging and tax

Value Season
CSR at 30% off (common PIN discount) - $2,900.80
WL at 40% off (again, common PIN discount) - $3,171.32
CSR with free dining - $2,517.30 (room at rack rate)
WL with free dining - $3,174.96

Regular Season II
CSR at 30% off - $3,017.08
WL at 40% off - $3,456.08
CSR with free dining - $2,683.41
WL with free dining - $3,649.56


Windsor Hills assumptions: park tickets and tax (no parkhopping), seven nights lodging and tax, pool heat (which may not be needed), Dining at Disney which includes dinner at Crystal Palace and breakfast at Akershus and 3 CS at $50/day (these totaled $435 + $150 tax/tip), parking, out of park dining at $40/day, $100 for groceries - this is how I imagine my family would dine

WH total - $2,998.56


So, staying at WH is not cheaper all the time when comparing with a moderate but is cheaper than a deluxe every time.

I did learn that the dining plan would work great for my family because I looked at where we would like to dine with the dining plan and the total cost was about $872 and that did not include any desserts and only one drink for the whole party whereas the dining plan is $756. My food when staying at Windsor Hills would total $765.

Thanks for letting me amuse you. Now the question is, will I stay on site or off and that is yet to be determined.

Beckypooh1972
05-28-2010, 10:45 AM
Thanks for posting! :worship: We've considered staying at Windsor Hills and still might do so some day. Personally I like the free dining because I don't have to cook and my husband doesn't have to drive around finding an off property restaurant we can get into without a 45 min. wait. The condo idea is really great in terms of the extra privacy which is worth a lot to us. The extra magic hours? Love 'em but usually the kids are too pooped for us to take advantage of them. Your cost comparison was really interesting to read - off property vs. on property. I might try doing the same research for my own family to see how we would fair either way. The biggest saving for us would be eating at home more - but that means more work for Mom and less vacation... :laundy:

polineedyan
05-28-2010, 10:45 AM
transportation??

taylorcpa
05-28-2010, 10:47 AM
We are driving so no rental car.

taylorcpa
05-28-2010, 10:51 AM
The biggest saving for us would be eating at home more - but that means more work for Mom and less vacation... :laundy:

We could save money by eating in more but I honestly don't think that would happen. My plan calls for 12 meals out - leaving 9 meals at the condo.

On the one hand not having to cook/clean up sounds good, but so does not having to find somewhere to eat every meal. We also get tired of eating out after a while.

Planogirl
05-28-2010, 10:59 AM
It also depends on how much space you want but that's hard to quantify. I love to spread out on vacation and I love having kitchen facilities if only for drinks and snacks. I also have no interest in the dining plan which is good since it's poor for small parties.

You can make simple things in the condo or order pizza. There's a lot of possibilities to avoid having to work too much. Definitely bring paper plates! ;)

AllesonWonderland
05-28-2010, 11:29 AM
Thanks for returning and telling us how your comparison worked out! I love the number crunching too. ;) I still have the figures from both our trips--when we went just the 4 of us we spent $450 on food for 9 days/8 nights. That included airport/traveling meals, front row seating at the HDDR and a breakfast at Chef Mickeys. Every day we shared a couple meals in the parks to tide us over, but mainly bought a bunch of groceries. Had breakfast at the townhouse, packed beef jerky, trail mix, pretzels, etc. in my baggallini, shared a late lunch, then went back to the townhouse for a snack and dinner. Dinners were pretty easy--chicken casserole, pasta and sauce, burgers and dogs, sandwiches, etc. Like you said, if you don't think you'll eat in as much your budget has to reflect that. We also went during peak season, so that made the lodging difference even greater for us. Have fun deciding!

Pixieflip
05-28-2010, 11:36 AM
Wow, interesting results! I agree, I'd love to be able to eat out every day, but having the option to save a bit on some of the meals is a definite plus. DP isn't appealing right now with the girls at 13 and almost 12. They'd be happy with a bowl of buttered noodles every meal. Now if I had 4 like my teenage boy?? Different story!

3boymthr
05-28-2010, 12:54 PM
One question, does the Windsor Hill figure include room/rental taxes (do those even apply?)

Plus, it definitely evens out even more if you are flying....

Rental car - compact car (4 people 3 bags) $500/week / This doesn't include the cost of the insurance which would be about another $100. So $600 for a car rental. This is without a discount code, but it is a discounted price of $100 cheaper than any of the major carriers which offer discount codes.

If you have 5 people like me and need to rent an SUV or Mini-van figure $700/week for the rental car.

So, if you have a discount code such as FD or the 40% off it would be actually be cheaper to stay at the WL.

taylorcpa
05-28-2010, 01:02 PM
[QUOTE=3boymthr;36797765]One question, does the Windsor Hill figure include room/rental taxes (do those even apply?)

Yes, it does include taxes

HeatherC
05-28-2010, 01:02 PM
Our problem is that we are a family of five. (Kids are all adults now by Disney standards.) So every time we have gone I've priced things six ways to Sunday and every time offsite winds up being way cheaper.

Wherever you stay, I hope you have an awesome time! Half the fun to me is in the planning and it looks like you're having fun with it!

abmitch01
05-28-2010, 01:33 PM
just an FYI, we didn't need pool heat in May

polineedyan
05-28-2010, 01:37 PM
One question, does the Windsor Hill figure include room/rental taxes (do those even apply?)

Plus, it definitely evens out even more if you are flying....

Rental car - compact car (4 people 3 bags) $500/week / This doesn't include the cost of the insurance which would be about another $100. So $600 for a car rental. This is without a discount code, but it is a discounted price of $100 cheaper than any of the major carriers which offer discount codes.

If you have 5 people like me and need to rent an SUV or Mini-van figure $700/week for the rental car.

So, if you have a discount code such as FD or the 40% off it would be actually be cheaper to stay at the WL.

We have a large family and we always rent a van. We use the codes from mousesavers. Last year a 7 day was 265 with a code. Over the winter, we did the 'get what we give ya' deal thru dollar i think. They gave us a van for about 47 a day..

TnTWalter
05-28-2010, 01:38 PM
OK, I am an accountant so I naturally can come up with wonderful spreadsheets so that I can compare things. If you remember, I asked for feedback about including items to do a cost comparison between onsite at CSR and WL and a condo at Windsor Hills. Forgive me if it is long. This is for two adults and two Disney kids

On Site assumptions - park tickets and tax (no parkhopping), regular dining plan, $300 for tax & tips on meals, $50 for groceries, seven nights lodging and tax

Value Season
CSR at 30% off (common PIN discount) - $2,900.80
WL at 40% off (again, common PIN discount) - $3,171.32
CSR with free dining - $2,517.30 (room at rack rate)
WL with free dining - $3,174.96

Regular Season II
CSR at 30% off - $3,017.08
WL at 40% off - $3,456.08
CSR with free dining - $2,683.41
WL with free dining - $3,649.56


Windsor Hills assumptions: park tickets and tax (no parkhopping), seven nights lodging and tax, pool heat (which may not be needed), Dining at Disney which includes dinner at Crystal Palace and breakfast at Akershus and 3 CS at $50/day (these totaled $435 + $150 tax/tip), parking, out of park dining at $40/day, $100 for groceries - this is how I imagine my family would dine

WH total - $2,998.56


So, staying at WH is not cheaper all the time when comparing with a moderate but is cheaper than a deluxe every time.

I did learn that the dining plan would work great for my family because I looked at where we would like to dine with the dining plan and the total cost was about $872 and that did not include any desserts and only one drink for the whole party whereas the dining plan is $756. My food when staying at Windsor Hills would total $765.

Thanks for letting me amuse you. Now the question is, will I stay on site or off and that is yet to be determined.

how much is your Windsor Hills rental?

Our condo was $450 for the week total. Would that make it cheaper? Or same?

We only did one TS this trip as we'd been twice before and wanted to maximize rides etc. this time [kids are older]....it was Crystal Palace...$120ish.

We still ate at the parks....they have some nice CS restaurants...

and we ate offsite....I only did a few easy meals in the condo [one was just boiling pasta because we bought sauces and bread at Olive Garden to go]...and of course breakfasts....

I spent $400 on dining and $200 on groceries [went for convenience products no coupons, easy] but this included toiletries and we took the leftover groceries for our second week at the beach....


We also have 3 kids, one is an adult so that makes the dining plan pricey for us.

Here's my tally of what we spent at the restaurants...fyi....
http://tntwalterdisneyworld.blogspot.com/2009/06/budget-meal-planning.html


I think it looks great. Good to see the price comparisons...


I love crunching numbers too. LOL. We're DIS'ers that's for sure!

polineedyan
05-28-2010, 01:40 PM
My own two cents on the subject..fwiw, is that this topic gets debated a lot. If money were the final say, then yes, you can do cheaper. There is always a cheaper way. But those incidentals do add up. For us to go off property would just take too much out of it..just an opinion.

MinnieForMe
05-28-2010, 02:32 PM
One question, does the Windsor Hill figure include room/rental taxes (do those even apply?)

Plus, it definitely evens out even more if you are flying....

Rental car - compact car (4 people 3 bags) $500/week / This doesn't include the cost of the insurance which would be about another $100. So $600 for a car rental. This is without a discount code, but it is a discounted price of $100 cheaper than any of the major carriers which offer discount codes.

If you have 5 people like me and need to rent an SUV or Mini-van figure $700/week for the rental car.

So, if you have a discount code such as FD or the 40% off it would be actually be cheaper to stay at the WL.

If you are budget minded, please check out the transportation forum here. I have NEVER paid $700 for a minivan rental in the past 8 years. We went April of this year and for 9 days paid $320 for a minivan using Alamo including all taxes and fees. It does take a ton of time to find the best rate. I looked and played with coupons/codes for weeks but it was money in my pocket for Disney!

mrsklamc
05-28-2010, 03:57 PM
WH pricing can vary widely, since they are individually owned the owners can price how they want, or give you a 'fire sale' rate if they have a vacant week coming up. The properties can also vary from a plain condo to 5 bedroom houses with custom built beds shaped like castles.

CdnCarrie
05-28-2010, 04:26 PM
We are driving so no rental car.


Did you calculate in parking costs? If you stayed onsite you would not pay the daily parking rate making it even cheaper than Windsor Hills.

Chelley00
05-28-2010, 05:03 PM
So, staying at WH is not cheaper all the time when comparing with a moderate but is cheaper than a deluxe every time. .


For someone with only 2 kids, it probably is cheaper to stay at WH, but when you add a couple more kids, WH (or another offsite place) is way cheaper than 2 rooms at a value.

savannahcat
05-28-2010, 05:15 PM
I think it all comes down to what that extra space is worth to you. After all, you are comparing a hotel room against a condo that has a living area, kitchen, and multiple bedrooms.

For my family, it is only worth it to stay in a hotel room on property if we are within walking distance/monorail of at least one park. And even then, we can't last a week without getting grumpy with one another.

For us, that extra space is worth a lot!

njsweetP
05-28-2010, 05:40 PM
We always stay offsite, having that extra space after a long day at the parks is sooo worth it for us. We are 2 adults with 2 teenage daughters, you get the idea. Here's our breakdown for what it's worth:
Air: 916.80
Cypress Grand Villas 2 bdrm condo/7 nights -561.89
Car Rental -132.79
4 days parking - 56
Gas - 35
Leftover Non expiring tickets from 3 years ago.
Food - no limit here, we just eat where we want, have a couple of ADR's and offsite ressies, but that's it.
I'll even throw in the dog kennel fee we have to pay to board the dog - 400.

So for us (and I know it has no value for OP) it is sooo cost effective for us
to stay offsite. We are at the parks for opening time. We grab breakfast in the condo and we are on our way. The condo worked out well one year when oldest DD got sick and we had to cook her plain noodles for the day. I never cook a meal, but the kitchen is great for leftovers and the washer/dryer is great for when we get stuck in the rain. Just some things to think about, I don't think I could stay in a one room hotel for any length of time with 4 people. I need room to relax and have my own space. But that's just me.

skhermsmeyer
05-28-2010, 06:24 PM
We're staying at the Rolling Hills subdivision (didn't know about Windsor Hills until after we booked :headache:). How much further is it to the parks? Is it a big difference or are we going to be okay getting to the parks at a decent time? :rotfl: Gotta love when the DH wants to help "plan". :rolleyes1

Acklander
05-28-2010, 09:09 PM
We're staying at the Rolling Hills subdivision (didn't know about Windsor Hills until after we booked :headache:). How much further is it to the parks? Is it a big difference or are we going to be okay getting to the parks at a decent time? :rotfl: Gotta love when the DH wants to help "plan". :rolleyes1

rolling hills is about 2 minutes further away than Windsor Hills

skhermsmeyer
05-29-2010, 10:25 PM
rolling hills is about 2 minutes further away than Windsor Hills


thanks for the quick response!!! :goodvibes

Tinkerbell58
05-30-2010, 07:44 AM
We are driving so no rental car.

Do you figure in the price of gas vs. using free Disney transportation?

Lost park time driving to the park vs. staying onsite?

mrsklamc
05-30-2010, 08:21 AM
It actually takes less time to drive yourself from WH than to take the buses.

surfgirl
05-30-2010, 09:03 AM
you forgot this:

wireless access ... condo - free; on-site - ??

---------------------------------------
offsite - having space for the 3 kids to go to bed while parents can relax .... priceless!

offsite - having two bathrooms .... priceless!

-----------------------
Again, I think it depends on individual circumstances - we will always rent a car on-site or off (I hate depending on buses!), so is not a variable.

We have 3 kids, so on-site gets miserable after, oh, about 2 days. It so isn't worth it. Once I figure out where to put all the 'stuff' so we have room to walk, the idea of bedtime isn't fun - do I sit in the bathroom ? if I lay down, I will fall asleep and then wake up at 3am.

How do you quantify those things ?

powellrj
05-30-2010, 10:22 AM
It really boils down to what is important to you. Even when we stay on-site, we always rent a car. I just can't give up the control of going where I want to go when I want to! I bought a brand new car last month and already have 3300 on it and it had less than 100 when I bought it. A car is part of me I can't give up control of!!!! So the idea of a trip using disney transportation is a nightmare for me where other people can't imagine a vacation where they have to drive!

We enjoy TV, I admit it, we are a family that likes to start the day and end the day with TV. How many times can you watch the Disney top 10??? I like my morning news and my late night talk shows and since you don't get expanded cable at disney, we miss it! Other people love disney tv 24 hours a day, to me it would be torture!

I also like a cold drink and a toasted bagel to start the day and I like walking into my own kitchen in my jammies to fix it. The idea of walking down to the food court or fixing my breakfast in the bathroom area just aren't my thing, so I really appreciate the kitchen. I know other people think its work to toast a bagel and want to leave the cooking to others.

I also value my alone time. I love my kids, but I also need time away from them! It fine for all of us to share a room when we are driving and only spending one night is, but the idea of all of us sharing a 500 sq foot area for a week is scary! My boys and DH are all over 6ft tall and DD is taller than I am, so thats alot of bodies in a small area!

I avoid EMH and didn't like having to make and keep ADRs with the dining plan, so both of those things really don't interest us. We did the old dining plan when app, desserts and tips were included, but I don't really see a cost saving for us now. We can eat much cheaper off-site when you are feeding hungry teens! Off-site is really a no brain er for us not even considering the cost factor.

For other families, those things are important to them and they don't mind the added cost of on-site!

lucigo
05-30-2010, 10:31 AM
The prices are close enough that you really have to consider what you want for your vacation. We have stayed on-site for up to 8 days, and we have also had 7 night weekly condo rentals. Both have their benefits.

On a side note...
We have driven and brought a small microwave to Pop Century, which even with free dining is nice if you want a snack at night or in the morning.

maleficentmom
05-30-2010, 10:52 AM
Guess I'm the weirdo here,but if we are doing a week or several days at Disney,we prefer onsite w/ dining/magical express/the busues,etc....just to get off the plane and have it all taken care of for X amount is great, BUT..we usually do LOTS of planning ,dining/parks/etc...all planned out in advance and we avoid summer/holidays when the buses would be packed.We do Universal at their hotels because front of line is awesome to us.Now I have to say we stayed at downtown dis. and Buena Vista Suites(great breakfast and nice suites cheap),and as they have bus service it was almost as good as staying at Disney,and we got the rate really cheap,and if you like to do shopping,etc...i can see the advantage of offsite,especially if you go with grandparents,grown kids,etc...we are going with the grandparents(who live out of the US) in Oct. and unless can get free dining,we may do a condo a few days and then one night at Universal,but if it's just hubby/me and kids we always do Disney/Universal hotels

lucigo
05-30-2010, 10:58 AM
Guess I'm the weirdo here,but if we are doing a week or several days at Disney,we prefer onsite w/ dining/magical express/the busues,etc....just to get off the plane and have it all taken care of for X amount is great, BUT..we usually do LOTS of planning ,dining/parks/etc...all planned out in advance and we avoid summer/holidays when the buses would be packed.We do Universal at their hotels because front of line is awesome to us.Now I have to say we stayed at downtown dis. and Buena Vista Suites(great breakfast and nice suites cheap),and as they have bus service it was almost as good as staying at Disney,and we got the rate really cheap,and if you like to do shopping,etc...i can see the advantage of offsite,especially if you go with grandparents,grown kids,etc...we are going with the grandparents(who live out of the US) in Oct. and unless can get free dining,we may do a condo a few days and then one night at Universal,but if it's just hubby/me and kids we always do Disney/Universal hotels

That doesn't make you the "weirdo" or at least if you are than so am I? LOL I love staying onsite and not having to cook, clean, do extra work that makes it a vacation for everyone but me!

We just spent a week in Kissimmee in a 2 bedroom condo and I admit it was nice, having laundry, kitchen, etc. However we weren't on vacation we were house hunting. When we do stay onsite I prefer 2 rooms at Pop so we can spread out. :)

LadySiren
05-30-2010, 11:00 AM
For us, off-site is way cheaper, given the size of our family. Plus, we like to sprawl out a bit. As a TS owner, it's obviously much cheaper for us; our 5-day / 6-night stay at a Hilton resort cost me $49. Even if we weren't TS owners, we'd still consider something like WH. The benefits outweigh the costs for us when it comes to on-site / off-site. Everyone is different though so it's just a matter of figuring out what works best for you, your family, and budget.