View Full Version : Another Question..lol AKL or POR.. NEED SOME HONEST OPINIONS!
07-14-2005, 07:16 PM
Ok, I may drive you crazy with this being my 3rd question already but I am having the hardest time making up my mind... HELP ME ALL KNOWING DISNEY GOERS!!!! :moped:
Ok, we were going to book today for POR for Sept 6-10. However I can upgrade from that to a AKL Savanna room for about $90 a night more. This is definately going to be a tightly budgeted trip for us so I know we need to be careful. It is just my hubby and my 2 1/2 year old son and myself. This will be our first trip to Disney. What would you do? Keep the ressie for the POR or pay the extra $90 a night for AKL Savanna veiw knowing it will cut into more money than you really had planned to spend?? Such a hard choice but I have heard so many people say what a great place AKL is with a Savanna veiw.
So torn.. choices choices!!!! lol
I am soooooo ready to go!! :cool1: :Pinkbounc
07-14-2005, 07:18 PM
Oh yeah and if you say POR, although it looks nice. is it fun? I mean as nice as it looks it also looks a bit boring... ;) I don't want to feel all isolated when we come back to the room...
07-14-2005, 07:26 PM
I can fully understand your dilemma. We have changed/tweaked resorts 4 or 5 times for our upcoming September trip.
One thing to consider is how much time you will realistically spend in the resort. With a little one, that may be quite a bit and if that is the case then the amenities of AKL would be well worth the money. The rooms are a little bigger, the beds are bigger, the pool and food choices are a little closer and the scenery is awesome.
On our last major trip, we spent a few days at AKL but felt it was wasted as most of our time was in the parks, DTD, etc. and our DD11 was 9 at the time and had the stamina to stay out all day. Just did not have the time to appreciate the resort enough for the extra $ :rotfl2:
Will you go back to Disney again? If yes (like us), you also cannot go wrong with a split stay. A few nights a moderate and a few nights at deluxe.
Good luck with your decision!
07-14-2005, 07:52 PM
Oh I am sure we will be itching to go back before we even get home..lol
I know we will be planning future trips. How far in between each one is hard to say..lol
We love anything Disney though. We have our kitchen decorated in MM and will soon have one of the bathrooms in MM. We have almost every Disney dvd ever..some more than one copy of.lol We have tons of Disney Snowglobes..etc.. I swear our whole lives could be DIsney Disney Dinsey! :rotfl: Hard to beleive we are just now planning that trip! Of coarse that 9 hour drive is not gonna be too fun!..yikes!
07-14-2005, 08:24 PM
I vote for AKL! :banana: Your ds will love seeing the animals from your balcony! :Pinkbounc If you request a lower floor room it will look like they are right there in front of you! :Pinkbounc
07-14-2005, 08:46 PM
One thing about POR, and this is just my opinion, but I think it has the worst transportation of any of the resorts I have used. When we stayed there, it shared buses with POFQ and buses always stopped at POFQ first. So in the mornings, we almost never got a seat and with a little one, that is a pain. AKL has its own buses for all parks.
As far as the resorts them selves, I think they are both nice. The grounds at POR are beautiful, a lot more area to walk around there, than there is at AKL. It also has a nice boat to DTD.
AKL has bigger rooms, bigger beds, and it is nice to see the animals from your room and elsewhere over the hotel. At AKL you also get private balconies. I would spend the money to stay there, but I hated the transportation at POR and will never stay there again.
07-14-2005, 08:57 PM
The answer really comes down to your budget. Will making this change make everything else uncomfortably tight? If you think it is going to stretch your budget too much, stick with the moderate--- you'll still have a beautiful time. Get in the right frame of mind and you won't feel you are settling. And you'll have extra money for all the other stuff.
As a compromise, what about AKL standard or pool view? No you can't watch animals in your bathrobe but you're a short walk from the public viewing areas and you have all the deluxe amenities of an amazing resort.
Good luck whatever you choose. It's great being a first-timer! :earsgirl:
07-14-2005, 09:18 PM
Well, I've stayed at both and thoroughly enjoyed both. Bus service at AKL was slightly better, mainly because there's only the one stop, but we had no problems with POR buses either, never waited more than 10 minutes or so at either resort. They're both beautiful. AKL's lobby is breathtaking...I think I could live in it, lol. POR has very nice landscaping though and the boat to Downtown Disney is nice. It also has a peaceful walking path to POFQ, giving you the use of both themed pools. We preferred POR's food court to AKL's Mara by far. The piano man in the POR lounge is fun to see also.
If budget wasn't an issue I'd choose AKL in a heartbeat. However, $90/night is a LOT of money if the budget is tight. SO...keeping the budget in mind, I think I'd go with POR and enjoy myself fully without having to worry about every dollar spent while on vacation. ;)
07-14-2005, 09:36 PM
Have you used every discount that is available (like AAA)? If this is going to be your last trip for a long time, and you can find the extra money I guess I would do AKL. But if you are planning to go again next year, I would stay at POR and make a delux your next goal. I loved POR...my kids at 6yo had a fantastic time. They loved the pool but honestly to beds were a little small for DH and me (we are used to a king).
07-14-2005, 10:00 PM
Oh Yes, dh and I are used to queen bed and I am worried that a full is gonna be sooooo small for us. I LOVE the idea of having that Savanna veiw at AKL and being at AKL period.
Well the deals I have found give me the option of AKL or POR. POR being $90 cheaper a night.. I was just on the fence there on if AKL with that Savanna veiw is worth an extra $90 each night. This is our first trip to Disney (except me going at 11..lol) so I want it to be wonderful but again being on a fairly small budget for the trip it makes it a hard choice. One reason we wanted to go ahead and go this year is b/c in Jan ds will be 3. I wanted the first time taking him to be free.lol
I don't really have any special discounts that I can use. How do you all get these anyways? is it just AAA? Hmm.. It would be wonderful if I could get it any cheaper than that. I am booking through an agency though that is giving a pretty decent rate anyways. Hmm.... what to do? :rotfl:
I guess there are nice things about both of them. i think when dh gets home and we talk about it he will end up wanting to stay with POR although I want AKL BADLY! hehe
Thanks for all the ideas and tips guys! I am loving this board!!
07-14-2005, 10:51 PM
I hope you guys choose AKL when you chat tonight. Having stayed at both resorts (and I'm always on a budget), I can truly say that AKL is worth $90 per night more. It is an enchanting resort and an ideal one for your first stay as a family. With the little one, you'll be spending quite a bit of time in the room, I'm guessing (naps, etc.), and at AKL, I find the rooms and the views to be every bit as good as spending time in the parks. He'll enjoy the zero entry pool as well, because he'll be able to wade in while mom and dad watch him.
Honestly, honestly, honestly -- choose AKL. You'll not regret it.
I would choose AKL. it's a great place to stay. The savannah view rooms are great, the food is wonderful, and the bus service is excellent. Have a great trip!
07-15-2005, 07:23 AM
AKL is WAAAY nicer than POR. I know this isn't what you had in mind, but personally, I'd choose a standard room at AKL to save a lot of money, and view the animals from other parts of the resort.
07-15-2005, 07:54 AM
I love POR and would stay there every time we go to WDW, but DH and I don't have children and we basically always use the hotels as hotels..what gets us to the parks easiest? How are the pools? AND we like quiet (yeah, ok, we're pretty dull :rotfl2: )
On the other hand, my cousin and his wife stayed at AKL this last spring and they had an AWESONE time. To be able to see a giraffe eating outside your hotel room sounds pretty nifty. And especially since you have a little one, I think that would so much fun for you--
I think in your case, AKL would be a good choice.
Have fun! :earsgirl:
07-15-2005, 07:54 AM
I was just on the fence there on if AKL with that Savanna veiw is worth an extra $90 each night.Yes, it's worth it, IMO. Of course, I don't know how tight your budget is...that means different things to different people. ;)
07-15-2005, 08:21 AM
We just got back from POR not quite a week ago. We have never stayed at AKL or a Deluxe for that matter. We were not terribly impressed with POR. I guess it can be romantic because it is a beautiful resort with its mansions and landscaping. However, we thought it was on the dull side. We have kids 10, 8 and 4. For them, there just wasn't enough to get excited about. Plus there is a lot of walking, depending which room you have, to get to the food court, main pool, etc. When we go back, we will definitely NOT stay at POR. We will just have to save up to get a deluxe. And AKL is the one I want to stay at. Good luck. Have fun!
07-15-2005, 08:29 AM
Just something to think about disneyfanfamily...
I want to start by saying that we LOVED AKL...however, if you found POR boring, maybe you want to reconsider AKL, or at least take a look at some of the other deluxes. AKL has ONLY the animals (though they're certainly fun to look at) and a few other 'minor' activities...storytelling and such. POR has boat and bike rentals, carriage rides, the ferry boat to Downtown Disney, and the path to POFQ. If you were bored there... well, you probably see what I mean. AKL has no recreational activities other than the one pool and a small (but nice) playground for the kids. There's no where to walk to and it's not connected to anything else. AKL can also be a LOT of walking depending upon where your room is, but not as much as at POR. :)
07-15-2005, 08:40 AM
We went to WDW for 2 weeks at Easter, and having originally decided on AKL switched to Coronado Springs (on the advice from the boards!) because even a normal AKL room was going to work out a lot more expensive than a CSR room - £2,000 is a LOT of :mickeybar ! We did pop in on our last day to have a look, and while the themeing is amazing we did find the lobby area rather dark. We did lots of hotel hopping our last day and decided our next trip would be the Poly (just to throw another idea in the mix!), being so close to MK (having a monorail and boat option appeals), and having a real beach for kids to paddle on even if there's no time for a full pool session.
Wherever you go it will be great and one trip won't be enough! Lucky you're going in a car to you can bring back plenty of souvenirs :goodvibes - its no fun being tied to airline restrictions
07-15-2005, 08:47 AM
If you can swing it - AKL is WORTH it!! My DS13 at the time & I were there last November - we had a pool view - but STILL saw giraffes etc. from our balcony - and exploring the floors and "lookouts" from the hotel was fun and where else in the world (besides Africa maybe) can you experience this. The hotel areas - rooms - grounds - everything was worth every cent to us!! hope that helps with your decision - we probably won't ever stay anywhere else on future trips to WDW.....
07-15-2005, 08:57 AM
If you convince yourself that AKL savannah view is the way to go (I've never stayed at POR but I don't think you can beat AKL with a 2 1/2 year-old), here's a suggestion to maybe allow you to have your cake and eat it too.
Budget for a savannah view room but book into a AKL standard or pool view room. They could give you a complimentary upgrade to savannah view, but you won't know until you check-in. (We were upgraded from standard view to savannah view during the week before Easter this year) If they end up giving you what you booked, you can ask for an upgrade at your expense. If they give you a complimentary upgrade, your cost will be close to what you would have paid for POR.
If you look through the AKL discussion thread, you will find that complimentary upgrades are quite common...it's just that you shouldn't plan on getting one. The one risk in this suggestion is that a savannah room will not be available for you even if you offer to pay for an upgrade at check-in. However, if you look at the breakdown of the rooms at AKL, you will see that the vast majority of their rooms are savannah view and, as I noted above, we got a complimentary upgrade during one of their busiest weeks of the year.
Good luck with your choice.
07-15-2005, 09:55 AM
I vote AKL! :banana:
We stayed at AKL on our first trip to WDW in '01 for two nights before hopping over to BC--I wish we had just stayed put! We had a savannah room on the same level as the lobby overlooking the Arusha savannah. It was beautiful. Our kids are much older..we didn't spend very much time in our room :rolleyes: We were pretty much at the parks opening to closing--commando-style! :rotfl2:
When the kids were younger, it was great to have a balcony so that once they're asleep at night or taking naps, we had somewhere to relax too.
In order to save some money, book a standard room or pool view (you might get upgraded ;) ).
Have fun on your trip!
07-15-2005, 09:56 AM
I have stayed at both and loved AKL. I don't think that the two even compare when you get down to it. I would definitly stay at POR if you needed to because of the money but I don't think that it was that great. There is a lot of walking at POR which might be tough with a 2 year old. and at AKL the buses were great. We never waited more than 10 minutes for any bus at any time of the day and the pool is open 24 hours. That is a pretty big price difference though. Either way you will have a blast.
07-15-2005, 11:16 AM
We were in the same boat last year. We were going to stay POR and then where able to switch to AKL using the Visa rates (at least I think that is what I ended up using) anyways. We loved AKL and my DD's loved it too. We stretched the budget a little to make it work but DW and I agreed it would only happen as long as it didn't interfere with our other plans on everything else.
My biggest piece of advise is don't sacrafice any other part of your trip to get in to AKL, such as Character meals and other meals, or tix or souviners or anything else.
I think you would love both but POR will be just fine. You'll be in the room with him and in the pool with him, it's not that he's going to go exploring on his own. I don't mean to offend anyone with this comment but take him to the zoo or spend extra time a the AK park. He'll enjoy the AKL lodge better when he's a little older I think.
As many people here have said, just staying on DW property is magic enough.
Do all the extras you can with that $90 a day. Have a great trip
:earsboy: :earsgirl: princess: princess:
07-15-2005, 11:43 AM
I love POR's design and grounds, however that said, the transportation gets crowded. But when I'm on a budget, I have just learned to accept it or drive to the parks! If budget is a concern, that $90 per night can come in VERY handy paying for meals and souvenEARS! I also like the options at the food court at POR, their playground, pools and boat to DTD!
07-15-2005, 05:50 PM
Thank you all sooo much for all the advice. After hubby got home last night we decided we best stay at POR. We would love to AKL but it would not be too smart with our budget right now.
As for the ideas of getting a standard veiw room it was not an option. See, we are going through a group rate thing and the only 2 choices were available with the rates were POR standard veiw for $111 a night or AKL Savanna veiw for $201 a night. Any other choices would not get the group rate and would be much more a night. So that was why those 2 were my options. :earsboy:
So anyways, I am really hoping we will like POR. I requested to be near the front in a corner room, etc.. Hopefully that will help cut back somewhat on all the walking. I am just SOOOO excited about going that I can't contain myself. I am sure you will be hearing another 100 questions from me before it is time to go..lol
07-15-2005, 06:17 PM
just remember, everyone's contribution are their opinions. While some people may find it boring...others like that more laid back feel to unwind from the parks. While I'm really looking forward to our upcoming stay, I really like those posts from people who didn't *love* it are great because they help to keep expectations in check. The anticipation is so much fun, you don't want to be let down by the trip itself.
Have a great trip!
07-16-2005, 02:54 PM
I'd be happy to be anywhere - even a value (although not as happy as at a deluxe :blush: ). Think I've nearly got DH convinced on next summer - from saying "no more WDW for at least 10 years"!!! :teeth:
One more bottle of wine should do it :guilty:
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