Convince me to stay at Disney Resort
I've been pricing out different options for our 7 night stay for April. (just my wife and I)
Option 1: Sign up for Starwood credit card, get first night free at Swan/Dolphin. Stay six nights at bonnet creek 1 BR (on property, next to CBR) for $514 total.
Rental Car and Flights- Free (southwest credit card sign up points)
Pay out of pocket for quick service lunch at parks and snacks, dine out at O'Hana, Jiko, Chef Mickey's, Flying Fish, Le Cellier, Be our guest, beaches and cream, garden view tea room. ~$700
Two 5 day single park tickets from undercover tourist- $540
Option 1 total: $1,754
Swan and Dolphin 1 night- Free (starwood card sign up bonus)
Flight/Rental Car- Free (southwest card sign up bonus)
Boardwalk Villas Studio- $291/night + tax= $1,970
Disney Dining Plan 2 adults for 6 nights- $670
Two 5 day single park tickets from Disney- $570.84
Option 2 total: $3,210
Cost difference between option 1 and option 2 is $1,456
That's a hefty sum, almost double the cost so we can stay at the boardwalk, have the "care-free" convenience of the dining plan, get extra magic hours etc. We will also be sacrificing an 875 square foot room with kitchen/laundry for a 359 square foot room at the boardwalk.
So is the boardwalk worth it? Should there be an option 3 I should consider at another deluxe resort or moderate? A lot of you here on disboards could save big bucks staying at bonnet creek etc. but you choose to pay Disney prices. Should I suck it up and pay ~$1456 to have the full Disney experience?
Do you really want the kitchenette with the Villa?
It looks like you're planning to eat at least the majority of your meals out, so maybe it's not something you need.
If that's the case - I'd go with a different resort. Either a mod, WL or AKL. Depending on your interests/what parks you prefer.
It'll be cheaper than the Villa, still get the Disney feel and perks. You can take advantage of any discounts that are available during your trip (if there are any.)
You mention getting the rental car free, but you don't really need one on property. I know some people prefer their own transportation though. If you didn't use those points on a car, can you use them for anything else that would help with your trip?
eta: Just saw that this is for April. There's 30% off and discounted tickets ... try pricing that out for a different (non-villa) resort.
eta2: I also wouldn't bother with the free Starwood night. It seems like too much effort to switch rooms after just one night.
Yes, I think it is worth it to pay those prices. The resorts immerse you into the Disney magic.
The BWI is also in a great location. You have walking/boat distance to HS and EPCOT. A few of your restaurants you plan on going to are also in the EPCOT area.
If the disney prices fit into your budget then I would go for it.
I would go for option 2 and drop the dining plan, unless you have priced out the meals and it comes out cheaper to get it, which I can't imagine it would with the price of it for 2013.
The Boardwalk is a great place to stay, we stayed there twice last year and fell in love with it, especially if you don't have children or won't have them with you. DH and I don't and it seemed like a very grown up resort, we saw very few children.
Those prices I listed from Disney are from their special offer for spring rooms, and the Villa at boardwalk is actually cheaper than the regular room. As far as a mod goes, I think that Port Orleans riverside is a beautiful resort, but it's not $1,500 worth of awesome the way boardwalk or beach club would be. I'd do the poly or Grand Floridian in a heartbeat though if the prices weren't $500 a night!! Wilderness Lodge is beautiful but my wife and I stayed 3 nights there and it had bats flying around in the lobby and restaurants, so she is traumatized and will never go back!
Have you looked into renting DVC points? You could probably shave off $700 or so from the cost of your boardwalk room if you're willing to give up daily mousekeeping and rent a studio room (roughly the same size as your average Disney hotel room).
This late in the game you SHOULD be able to get points for $10 each, and you will probably be able to find a studio SOMEWHERE on property, even if it's not at Boardwalk.
We stayed at Bonnet Creek in May. It's a great place to stay, VERY cheap and really close to everything. With that said, I would stay on property just because it's Disney. If it were anywhere else, Bonnet Creek would win but staying on property just seems so much better (I really don't know why but it just does!)
I think BWI would be a fantastic choice! The full Disney experience is a happy thing - but if you really don't want to spend the money, I might look into the same thing at AKL - you get a unique deluxe resort experience for less dough and in my mind totally worth it. You can sometimes get AKL for about $200/night with a good discount.
Otherwise I'd just go for Bonnet Creek.
Either way you'll have a great time. I think staying on property does make for an extra magical trip experience.:wizard:
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