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Old 08-23-2009, 09:36 AM   #1
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Worth upgrading to AKL or even WL?

I'm new here, but not new to Disney (visited 8x) and my husband and I are coming on the 29th for our anniversary. We're currently booked for POR which is our first stay on Disney property...so excited! However, when we booked our room, it was only about $150 to upgrade to the AKL and a little more than that to upgrade to WL. My question: Is it worth it to upgrade to AKL? At this point, I would love to upgrade, when it's not much more. I've read that AKL is the furthest from the parks--is this a hassle? We're staying from the 29th to Sept. 2. TIA for your help!
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Old 08-23-2009, 09:48 AM   #2
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Can you even change now. Availability may be very limited, especially if you have a discount. That price difference may be much higher now since there may not be any standard rooms available. Since you are so close to travel, you also may be charged a change fee but often with upgrading they wave some fees. There shouldn't be much hassle to switching. Just call and ask. They can tell you no or what it would take to upgrade.

I would if I'm looking to spend time enjoying the resort. I might anyway just because it's a special occasion and it would be more special. I did our first big trip with the kids, with a huge discount. But learned that while it really was very nice at AKL, we didn't spend enough time in the hotel to be worth it.

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Old 08-23-2009, 09:55 AM   #3
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We build our Disney trips to include spending a lot of time at our resort, so the resort that we choose is very important to us. If you're going to spend a lot of time at your resort, then upgrading might be a great idea. But don't get me wrong, POR is a beautiful resort, and spending downtime there is quite a treat. Consider the theming of the resorts as well. Which resort will best fit your family? Does one resort "pull" at you over another? Honestly, they are all pretty wonderful, so it tends to come down to personal choice and fit.

Good luck with your choice....you're not going to go wrong with any of your options!

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Old 08-23-2009, 10:00 AM   #4
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I wouldn't upgrade to a standard view at AKL - I don't think those a very special. For me the magic of AKL is the Savannah view. I have stayed in a standard at WL and it was great. I think I would try to upgrade to the WL
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Old 08-23-2009, 10:20 AM   #5
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We booked std at akl and got upgraded to a pool view. We really like it even though we didn't have a savannah view. We still had the beautiful resort to enjoy. Now granted you can 'visit' and do a lot of the things but it is much easier when your room is there than to do extra travel time. Our room was one of the closest to bus Drop off (there is a side door near the bus stop that came in very close to our room). We wouldn't have done much looking at animals in the AM. Our mornings our much more about getting off to the parks. It was dark a lot of the time by the time we had time to view the animals. We did this through the night vision goggles which you would have to leave your room to do anyway. We enjoyed strolling around the resort and going to viewing areas...you don't have to have a savannah view to see them. There are so many things to do at the resort besides look at the animals. We wouldn't have wanted to pay for a savannah view, and if we go back we wont.

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Old 08-23-2009, 10:54 AM   #6
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Its a special occasion so we would recommend doing something extra to create some special memories. We think the AKL TS dining is better than the WL, but we prefer the WL location over the AKL. WL is a very short water launch ride over to the MK..Epcot a short bus ride or just take the ferry or monorail (MK starting point) over to the TTC and hop on the Epcot monorail loop.

The AKL is also the only deluxe without the ability to get to a park by walking or water transportation. We have stayed at most of the other deluxes and found the AKL to be a little isolated. We also prefer water transportation and monorail over buses, so we normally find ourselves at a MK or Epcot resort.

We also missed water recreation choices at the AKL since in place of water recreation you find the savannah animal viewing area.

Overall, we found the AKL to be a very nice resort with solid dininig options. Good animal viewing with a level of isolation that we perceive great for couples and families wanting to get away from it all or just pure animal lovers making the location worth it. If you stay here we always recommend a savannah or pool view and is worth experiencing at least once.
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Old 08-23-2009, 11:58 AM   #7
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110% YES!!! to the upgrade. Since it's your anniversary, please be sure to contact CRO and tell them that it is your anniversary. Who knows, you may get a free upgrade as we did on Wednesday when we went from WL standard view to WL Club Level for free. They will see this noted on your reservation and may give you the free upgrade even though it's not guaranteed. We've been upgraded 100% of the times that we've booked AKL SV as we go first 2 weeks of December when it's not as crowded. You should be in the same situation as the kids will be back in school by then and the resorts shouldn't be as packed as they were this past week as families get the last hoorah of summer before kids go back to school (YAY).

AKL is our favorite resort and would have stayed there this past week if it hadn't been 100% fully booked. We will be there in 3 months so we're ok with trying out WL to have a first-hand experience at the differences between the two resorts. Definetly upgrade and call to notify them of your special event. Also be sure to make a reservation at Jiko. Congrats on your anniversary.

The distance from AKL to anywhere is not that big of a deal. You will find out that it's more of a hassle at POR than AKL. Why? The bus stops at POR are some of the last to be serviced as all buses picking up stop at POFQ first, then go on to the other stops at POR. We did a split stay starting at POFQ and we noticed this and were glad that I changed from POR to POFQ 2 days prior to our arrival.
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Old 08-23-2009, 12:41 PM   #8
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I would go to Wilderness Lodge. My Husband and I LOVE it there...AKL is too far out for me.

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Old 08-23-2009, 04:55 PM   #9
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I would upgrade. We love AKL! Its definetly worth $150 more. Its a much nicer hotel with so much to see and do. AKL has two excellent restaurants, a better pool and two hot tubs. And of course, the animals!
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Old 08-23-2009, 07:18 PM   #10
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We've stayed POR and WL...I'd go with WL, you won't be sorry, and for such a special occasion the WL is far better than POR.
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