View Full Version : Why do you choose the resort you do?

09-17-2012, 01:02 PM

We were having an interesting conversation at work in which a co-worker asked why we like to stay at the GF for only 6 or 7 nights when we could stay at POR for 11 or 12 nights at about the same cost?

It got me thinking why people choose to make the resort decisions they do.

So, here is my answer:

My wife and I like the GF for a few reasons. One, we LOVE the magic Kingdom and our second favorite is Epcot. If we totally skip AK and spend half a day at MGM (holleywood) we are ok, but will go to the MK 6 or 7 times. Two, our favorite thing to do is to sit on the balcony at night, watch the castle change colors, and listen to the music from MK.

I guess that is why.

I wish I could do those things from another non-deluxe resort...but Disney is smart there and will never let that happen.

09-17-2012, 01:09 PM
Our biggest factor now is location. We want to have easy (no-bus-required) access to at least one park. We loved being on the monorail when we stayed at the Poly, and found ourselves frustrated with how long it took to get everywhere from CBR. So next year we are trying YC, and looking forward to being able to walk to both DHS and Epcot.

DH says he will only stay Deluxe now, simply b/c of the location. Sure, we could do a mod or value and stay more days, and even theoretically have more park time even with the added time in transit, but the in-the-moment stress of feeling like you spend your whole day sitting on a bus or waiting for one just wouldn't be worth it. And he refuses to drive on vacation, so renting a car isn't an option, lol!

I will admit I like the "feel" of the deluxe resorts, but I would probably be willing to give that up if they plopped a value (with value pricing) down next to a major park. Until then, we will wait until we can afford the deluxe resorts. I'm hoping Contemporary will be next after YC in April :)

09-17-2012, 01:16 PM
Every trip is different for me. Here is my current reasoning for my one past trip and my upcoming trips:

ASMo - kids are nuts for Toy Story so we went with a preferred room at ASMo and got in the TS wing. First trip for the kids and they loved it!
AoA - we are bringing my step son and my mom so that makes 6 -- we need the room plus the kids love Cars!
POFQ (or POR) - still not sure about this one. Originally we were going to be a party of 5 so we were going to stay in AB at POR. Now we are party of 4 so other options are open to us. We are booked at POFQ for now.
ASSports - this trip will be to celebrate DS's 5th bday so he gets to pick the resort. I imagine it will be this one or maybe a repeat of ASMo or AoA. 5 is the magic age where the kids get the trip to Disney for their bday and get to pick the resort etc.. so we will have a August 2013 and October 2014 bday trips!
I figure as we keep planning more trips, the resort choice will be determined by the circumstances around a particular trip which is fun!

09-17-2012, 01:17 PM
blt - my hoime resort

it is near lakes. (so is Pop) - you can walk to the MK!!! take the monorail to Epcot - so getting there is easy - it is the next stop on the monorail (TTC). now getting back from Epcot takes a while longer.

plus BLT has lots of activities so even if I don't feel like going to a park - there is something fun to do.

also love all the other DVC resorts - each has it own fun things to do. also love Pop - but at times the crowds can get to me.

09-17-2012, 01:18 PM
So,We were having an interesting conversation at work in which a co-worker asked why we like to stay at the GF for only 6 or 7 nights when we could stay at POR for 11 or 12 nights at about the same cost?

I don't know about most people, but I can't be gone for 11 days, so I may as well stay where I want for 7! ;)

We loved POR so much, we barely looked at any other resorts this trip. (OK, I did look at AKL & GF...I confess) It was so convenient and well, beautiful! We could've stayed value for 2 days longer, but we can't stay 2 days longer, so back to POR we go!

09-17-2012, 02:35 PM
I sort-of went the round about way to get my home resort - POR.

Back when I first started going, I did the land-sea package. It was structured from different resort levels and cabin categories on the ship.

So in order to afford it, I did a moderate resort with an inside mid-ship cabin on deck 5. I went to CBR first, wanted to try some other moderate resorts, so the next year I tried out POR. At the last minute, the TA got me an upgrade to the Dolphin since POR was going through refurbishments. The third year, I chose POR and fell in love with it, as did my mom, who was with me on the trip. (She went nuts over cruising that year too!).

I have taken some friends and done some solo trips and everyone seems to love POR with all its amentities.

09-17-2012, 02:42 PM
Well, we can't go for 11 or 12 nights. DH can't be away from work for that long. So, even though we have the money for longer, we can't make it work. I picked BCV for my birthday trip last year because of SAB. I picked CBR for our summer trip because it was a last minute budget trip and it was the only mod available (originally picked a value, but wanted pool slides). Our first trip I picked ASMu for the family suites.

wdw lifer
09-17-2012, 03:08 PM
For us it's all about location. The Epcot hotels make it so much easier to get everywhere. Right in the middle of everything. BC & YC have IMO the best pool too. We always rent a car and know most of the parking tricks to get a good spot and that speeds things up so we end up getting a lot more done without wasting time waiting for a bus or monorail

09-17-2012, 03:09 PM
We choose Saratoga Springs because we find it very relaxing due to its size. it is in close proximity to all the parks, DTD is in walking distance or can be reached by boat fairly easily and the views into DTD are stunning. and also its a lovely resort! :goodvibes

09-17-2012, 03:19 PM
the Cabins at Ft. Wilderness.

We love that we can take a boat to and from the Magic Kingdom and the monorail. (It is nice to have an option other than "THE BUS")

We love the peace of the campground. You are still immersed in the Disney experience, but you can also sip your morning cup of coffee on the deck in your PJs.

We seriously considered the new Art of Animation for our trip next year...it took 2-weeks of trying to decide which section we wanted to stay in before we finally gave up and realized that we just wanted to stay at the Cabins again : )

09-17-2012, 04:22 PM
We have a goal of staying at all the resorts. We typically visit Disney 3 times per year & this has allowed us to nearly attain our goal. We only have 5 more resorts to complete them all - Grand Floridian, Contemporary, Treehouse Villas, Art of Animation & Wilderness Lodge.

Our favorite place to stay is Caribbean Beach!

09-17-2012, 05:22 PM
My decision is based on finances. I am happy to pick a value if need be. We do prefer moderate because we visit in June & I like shady areas of the moderates. But discounts & a postcard with a pin code always wins out & the resorts that are offered under that discount.:yay:

Mrs K
09-17-2012, 05:28 PM
For us, it's location. We are a family of 5 and can only visit every two years. We started out at POR when it was Dixi Landings, but it was too cramped for us. The Poly is our favorite, but the GF was a very nice change of pace. Love to get up and see the castle.

09-17-2012, 05:42 PM
For us it kind of depends on the needs of our family at the time of travel.

2008- We had a 3 year old, didn't make as much money and only DREAMED of getting to go to Disney, so we picked ASMovies because we knew he would love the theme. We were right :)

2010- We had a 5 year old and a 9 month old and are making more money. We visited Coronado Springs while there in 2008 and we all just thought it was beautiful. Traveled with family on this trip and wanted them to experience a nice hotel with great amenities.

2012- We have a 7 and a 2 1/2 year old. Coronado Springs is beautiful and we loved it, but the 2 1/2 year old has some pretty significant medical and sensory issues. WE NEED A SMALLER RESORT!! So, we are going to try POFQ and see if we like it. Honestly, I think I could stay in a box on the corner of ANY resort and be happy I was in Disney. However, we are staying for 12 nights this trip and could only stay that long if we were in a Moderate with FREE dining ;)

However, if I get a great deal, I would love to stay at a deluxe. The problem is that I may not be so willing to stay at the Moderate level after that. :)

09-17-2012, 05:45 PM
Simple math for us.

Hate WDW buses + Epcot & DHS are our favorite parks = Epcot Area Resort. And since we bought DVC at BWV, we're set!

mad madam mim78
09-17-2012, 06:15 PM
All about price for me. I can take 2 trips to Disney if I stay at PoR. If I stay somewhere like the poly I can only swing 1. Hmmm.....1 trip or 2 trips?

2 TRIPS!!!!!! :goodvibes

pepe of ohio
09-17-2012, 06:41 PM
We pick the middle of the road based on location and price .... Really want nothing to do with value resorts, so that leaves us moderates and deluxes...

To get away from the high price deluxes and a step above the moderates we go to WL.... Not as high prices as the other deluxe resorts and in the MK area which we prefer and it's off the beaten path but only a boat ride away from the MK....

Then the price is right... Usually have a good AP discount or at least a AAA discount which makes this resort economical for us....

Everyone has their reason and picks but we base ours on location and then price!!

09-17-2012, 08:10 PM
SSR or OKW are my fav. My DH likes the dining options at SSR while I love the foliage and seclusion of OKW. While we're not crazy about bus service, we do occasionally use it. Since we go off season, it's usually not too bad. We also use our personal vehicle quite often, except to MK for obvious reasons. I just love hearing "Welcome Home" upon our arrival, and I really feel like we're home.

Disney Pal
09-17-2012, 08:29 PM
We love the Boardwalk. We have been staying there for the last 10 years.
We also love the atmosphere at night with the jugglers and magic acts. We love Epcot and the walk is only 5 min!!!

09-17-2012, 09:17 PM
We are only going for 6 nights and plan to spend most of our time in the parks, only in the rooms to sleep (including naps) and get ready. Our children are 6 and under, and DH has never been and does not see the value in the Disney vacation just yet, so I went with price and theme appealing to kids.

It is my hope that everyone falls in love with Disney World, and we get to return next year to stay in the Pirate rooms at CBR, assuming my boys are still into pirates. This has been a recent interest, so part of me regrets not doing it this year.

If it becomes an annual thing, the next step would probably be a monorail resort, when kids are a little older. At the current time, park hopping is not at all appealing, but as they get older, I know it will be and we would prefer being at one of the resorts with more transportation options.

09-17-2012, 09:45 PM
Business Trips:
POR since my client's office is right behind POR. I like the expansiveness (which I know isn't for everyone) and relaxed feel without in-your-face Disney theming.

Solo / single child trips:
Value to save money. I figured the kids would love the theming (especially my sports oriented DS5) but I was wrong. The winner is...

Multi-child / Family trips:
Beach Club - with two potentially tired kiddos proximity wins out. DS5 and DD9 say EPCOT and DHS are their favorite parks. MK doesn't really trip their trigger. Kids love SAB, thinking walking to EPCOT beats the bus, and beg to go to the lobby to watch TV. Ummm, guys, there's one right here in the room. :confused3

Romance trip:
POLY. I had a couple things happen during our romance week last year (left my electric razor at home and injured my foot) and Dennis at the concierge desk delivered the best Disney service I've ever had.

What I don't like - Swan and Dolphin. I did a visit there recently and it was just too much like the hotels I stay in the other 40 weeks of the year (I'm a road warrior at work) and just didn't give me the vibe. Great places, nice places, but just the vibe I want for R&R time.

09-18-2012, 03:00 AM
Budget is my biggest factor. I would love to stay at the deluxe resorts. I love to visit them each trip and eat at their restaurants. But I am on a Value resort budget. We stay at Pop Century because its the value that appeals to me the most. It seems so much brighter in my opinion. My first stay was at All Star Sports and it was fine. Our second trip Pop Century was open, so we tried that. I could never go back to All Stars after staying at Pop Century. I was able to stay at the Wilderness Lodge once for a long-weekend girls trip with some coworkers where we split the cost of the room. We splurged for a deluxe that was not crazy expensive. I would love to stay at the Wilderness Lodge with my family but it is out of our budget.

09-18-2012, 03:46 AM
Space made us go with aoa-nemo suite

09-18-2012, 06:43 AM
It really depends on what I want out of the trip.

For example, for my September trip, which is the peak of hurricane season, I want a kitchen/kitchenette so I can prepare basic meals in the event of a storm.

For December, I like to be in the Epcot resorts area, because I spend more time doing Christmas things at DHS and Epcot.

In January, I like to take advantage of the cooler temperatures to stay at resorts that require more walking outdoors. It's a great time for FW cabins and the other mods.

In May, I pick based on which park(s) I'd like to focus on. Sometimes it's MK (I stayed at WL this year), sometimes it's Epcot (stayed at BWV last year).

If I am taking a very short trip for a specific reason (like a hard ticket party), I'll go with wherever I can get the best rate, unless I need walking access to a specific resort (think OMDD - CR would be convenient).

I've stayed at all levels of resort, and had great trips at all of them. Granted, some I liked more than others, but I haven't had a bad trip at any of them. Budget is always a factor, but I would rather go to a mod instead of a deluxe than cut my trip short.

09-18-2012, 08:16 AM
We only will stay at Epcot area resorts now. We like the location. In particular BC is the one I want to stay at every time. SAB is the best and we love spending hours a day there relaxing in the lazy river. If BC was sold out we would do YC .

If it is during the winter months and pool time is not our focus or if $$ is tighter we choose the Swan or Dolphin.

Both these choices allow us a more relaxing style trip. 2 parks without within walking distance, so many restaurant choices which is so important to us and the abillity to stroll around the Boardwalk in the evening.

09-18-2012, 08:23 AM
We've stayed at several resorts...

All Star Sports - This was on our first trip. Primarily the $ was a factor and since Pop Century (our first choice) wasn't available, this was our next. Plus our daughter is heavily involved in sports. So go figure!

It was a nice resort but the time of the year is everything for us.

The second trip we stayed at Pop Century. We've been back there twice! The kids love the theming, the sprinklers in and about the pool and we've always had a nice room (near the pool) which made it all the more worth it!!!

BUDGET has been a factor for these trips.

One year we were able to get a moderat same price we could stay at a value! So we took it and chose PORFQ. LOVED IT!!! :beach: We chose this moderate mainly for the boat access, the room size/bed size and the beignets!

This trip, PORFQ wasn't available so we decided to try POR in the new Royal Rooms. Again we got within our budget to stay at a moderate for the price of a value in the past so we took it.

We can only dream of staying at a place like the GF! I just do not make the kind of money to stay there.... :sad: On the other end, I don't feel so bad because I know if I did stay there I'd probably not want to go back to Disney unless we could do EVERY trip staying there... :crazy2:


09-18-2012, 08:35 AM
All about price for me. I can take 2 trips to Disney if I stay at PoR. If I stay somewhere like the poly I can only swing 1. Hmmm.....1 trip or 2 trips?

2 TRIPS!!!!!! :goodvibes

I like the way you think! I wish I could do that! We are a family of 5 and my youngest is still small enough for Murphy Bed (4' 5"). We really liked POR (stayed in Bldg. 14) and love food court, boat to DTD, etc. Problem is we need (not want) more space when we are traveling 10+ nights. My family functions better that way. We choose the biggest rooms possible at the resorts with the theme and food we like. This ends up to be Deluxe and one trip a year. Not interested in Family Suites at Value (just personal preference).

09-18-2012, 08:44 AM
Our first stay onsite was at a mod (which we loved), but after trying the deluxes, we won't stay anywhere else now. We love the deluxes for the larger rooms, alternate transportation options, and a variety of TS options (just to name a few). We are also in the minority group that would shorten our trips if we had to in order to stay where we wanted. We probably spend more time at the resort than we do the parks, so the resort is an important part of our trips.

09-18-2012, 09:11 AM
After having stayed at a couple different moderate hotels and then finally splurging and staying at Beach Club Villas, I was hooked. I love being able to walk to Epcot, love the atmosphere of the hotel, walking around the lake and having a kitchen and couch in my room. I made a believer out of my now DH when we went on our first Disney trip together (when we got engaged at Animal Kingdom!)- so much so that he chose Disney too celebrate his 50th birthday. So we're off to BCV in Feb/March for his party!

Belle & Ariel
09-18-2012, 11:34 AM
For us there are many factors in determining resort:

DVC --If we have theme park tickets we love our home resort of Boardwalk because our favorite parks are Epcot and DHS and we can walk to both. I love to hang out on the boardwalk at night. Of all Disney resorts this most feels like home.
If we book last minute and can't get there we like Old Key West in the summer and Animal Kingdom in the winter. OKW just doesn't seem right in winter--it should always be warm in the near tropics:). The fire pits at AKL are a turnoff in the Florida heat of summer to me.

For free dining we love the values. I love the peaceful relaxing vibe at All Star Music and can relax and enjoy a week there.
If we want to save high DVC weekend points we often stay Friday and Saturday at a value. Our first choice is Pop. I love the bright colors and "loud" vibe there but a couple days is enough of it for me so I would hesitate to do a week there.

As DVC members we can pool hop and I love to spend an afternoon at the Poly. I love the quiet pool with the huts with fans and walking around the resort.
We also love strolling through Port Orleans.

Disney resorts offer so much--something for every taste and budget.

09-18-2012, 12:34 PM
Our first time staying on property, we stayed at a mod (CSR) with free dining (which we upgraded to deluxe) and loved it. After the trip, I was convinced that, from a bang for your buck standpoint, staying at a mod with free dining was the way to go.

On that trip, however, we didn't do any late night shows like Wishes, Illuminations, or Fantasmic. Instead, we ate early signature dinners at various deluxe resorts and got back to CSR well before MK, EP, or HS closed. We also did a lot of early morning, pre-park opening character breakfasts. But we were all in the same room are were used to going to bed early and getting up early. So we were fine with relying on buses (and building in extra time to wait for them).

On our upcoming December trip, we're still planning on a lot of early, pre-park character breakfasts and signature dinners. However, we're additionally planning to go to MVMCP, Fantasmic, and Illuminations. Moreover, we're going with my parents, who are coming in from the West coast and aren't too keen on the idea of needing to be at a bus stop by 6:45 am in order to make it to a character breakfast (they'll also be in a separate room from us).

Originally, I intended to do a mod (either CSR or POR) with free dining again, just because we'd had such a great experience previously. But the more I got to thinking about the logistics of our trip, the more tempted I was to stay deluxe, mainly for location/convenience purposes.

So when the AP discounts came out last month, I booked a split stay at Poly and BC. We'll do 2 days at MK, MVMCP, and have a rest/DTD Disney day during our Poly leg, go to EP on our resort transfer day, and then do HS, AK, and a second day at EP during our BC leg.

Along these lines, our ADRs are set up so that almost all of our meals are close to where we're staying at a particular time.

It will be interesting to see whether staying deluxe will ruin us for ever staying moderate again.

09-18-2012, 01:21 PM
Sometimes it is who is going with us and where they want to stay. Other times it is the budget and then other times it is just what theme seems the most interesting to us at the time. We eventually want to experience all the resorts. It is going to take many years though to complete that quest!

I Love Pluto
09-18-2012, 01:44 PM
Food Court
Overall price
Overall "feel" of resort - theme, kindness of staff
Any specials/discounts given
Mostly parks -(stay value)
More resort time (stay mod)

According to the situations we expect, then we choose where we stay.

As you can see in my sig, Pop & POR fit our personalities very well. :thumbsup2

09-18-2012, 09:06 PM
It's what I can afford. If I can afford deluxe, I would go with Poly and WL. If I can afford moderate, then I would go with POFQ. If I can't afford neither deluxe nor moderate, then I would choose ASMovies and POP.

It's about the theme..

09-18-2012, 09:23 PM
We're on our first trip together as family and my mom has some difficult with walking for an extended period of time. Since we know she'll be walking a lot during our park visits, we picked the resort which she wouldn't have to walk around that much: POFQ.

This trip is 22 days long so we couldn't afford the Contemporary this time around. Otherwise this would be our pick.

09-18-2012, 09:48 PM
We haven't gotten to choose often!
Trip 1 We were not sure if it would be a one time only (not much $), knew with little kids we would be in the parks or sleeping! Went frugal at POP so we could stay 8 days!

2. We won a trip- they chose the resort-stayed in boardwalk did not expect to like it as much as we did!

3. Went with a homeschool group, got a discount on Contemporary or a mod, went with Contemporary.Liked it, didn't love it!

4. We are going to Bay Lake with some generous friends that have dvc!

5. Not sure where we will be next time!