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Old 08-17-2012, 11:21 AM   #1
Earning My Ears
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Where to stay

We are deciding where to stay if we should split our stay between idrive and disney or just 14 days at disney we are not hiring a car and looking at visiting every park. If we do a split stay how many nights should we spend at each resort? We are 2 adults no children.
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Old 08-17-2012, 11:54 AM   #2
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do you have a favorite park?
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Old 08-17-2012, 12:40 PM   #3
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This is my first time to florida
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Old 08-17-2012, 03:36 PM   #4
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Hmmmm..... No car eh?

It does make things interesting. Honestly, it's going to depend on what you want to do. Is there a specific reason you aren't looking at a car?

do you think you'll like the freedom to head back to your room during the day?

With no car, I'd almost suggest staying onsite at Disney during your Disney Days. This will give you the ability to use the Disney Transportation around the Disney Resort, as well as Magical Express from the airport when you arrive.

Then move onsite to Universal during your Universal days. The onsite at universal will give you the Front-of-the-line passes for the Universal parks, and are VERY nice hotels. As 2 adults, another advantage is that you can not only go to and from your room during your park days, but if you wanted to visit Citywalk for dancing/drinking/movies You can very easily hop back by the room to change from your park clothes to your "play" clothes, and head back out to Citywalk for your evening entertainment. Then afterwards you don't need to worry about driving or getting a cab back to the hotel, and can either do a rickshaw, walk, or take the boat launch back to your hotel.

For Seaworld..... It's probably only a single day thing, so I'd say you could plan on doing it from either the onsite Disney or Universal location. Either way You'll need to take a cab or group transport from the resort to the park.

Offsite hotels don't always have the best transportation to the various parks, and sometimes you'll either end up paying extra for their park shuttles or they may share their shuttles with several other offsite hotels. Since you won't have a car, and it's your first trip, I'm not sure the hassle and lack of flexibility on the offsite hotel options would be the best suited for your needs. Once you are more familiar with the parks and what your natural touring style is, you'll be better suited to decide if offsite w/o a car would meet your needs.
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Old 08-17-2012, 03:46 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by adele1991 View Post
We are deciding where to stay if we should split our stay between idrive and disney or just 14 days at disney we are not hiring a car and looking at visiting every park. If we do a split stay how many nights should we spend at each resort? We are 2 adults no children.
Welcome adele1991! There is so much to do in Orlando plus lots to do in the area so you might want to think through some possibilities and see what might be the best fit for you.

Disney World - 4 parks and lots of resort hotels with different themes and budgets/locations. You could easily stay on property for 14 days and do nothing else - there is lots to explore at WDW. There is also Downtown Disney and 2 water parks plus golf courses on WDW property. Disney transportation is good and included.

Universal Studios - lots of people book Universal packages and stay on site at Universal - check out the website and the Universal thread on the DIS for more information on transportation information.

Seaworld, Discovery Cove and Aquatica- between Universal and Disney - check out the website and DIS thread.

There are frequent Lynx buses from Disney to Seaworld (every 1/2 hour) and Lynx buses will also connect to Universal with a transfer - golynx.com

I-ride trolley as well as Lynx bus provides transportation to International Drive - 2 outlet shopping centers on either end of International Drive - Premium Outlets.

There is a care car center at WDW where you can rent a car - also one at the Dolphin hotel - so that may be worth looking into if you want a car for a day or two. Also Mears provides taxis and transfers throughout WDW and the area - you can look up the prices on the Mears website.

Cape Canaveral is an interesting place to visit - if you are interested in NASA at all.

Well that is enough to get started!!

But really you could definitely have a Disney only magical stay - let Disney do all the driving - enjoy your planning!
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Old 08-18-2012, 05:39 AM   #6
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We are not hiring a car as i cant drive and my partner drives for a living so wants a rest. We wont be able to afford 7 nights disney and 7 night onsite universal as coming from the uk this is very expensive
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Old 08-18-2012, 07:32 AM   #7
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I would recommend just doing Disney personally - there is plenty to do for two weeks! Matter of fact, I'm leaving today to do just that! I'm renting a car and staying at a nearby condo (actually two, would rather not move during our vacation but it just worked out that way).

I understand that you don't drive, so to me the most economical way to do it would be to look at a hotel close to Disney with free transportation. The most convenient ones are the Downtown Disney hotels - there are 7 of them (I think?). They have a bus service that is pretty convenient, plus you can walk to Downtown Disney as well as a shopping center, Crossroads, which has a bunch of reasonable priced restaurants (and one overpriced grocery store).

The Holiday Inn on this strip has just been completely remodeled, and it looks nice. Of course there is a Hilton, probably more money but I don't know if you have any Hilton points.

If you have any Starpoints (Starwood Hotels) another option is the Swan or Dolphin hotels. They are higher end than the Holiday Inn - truly deluxe hotels with an amazing pool area, a bunch of restaurants, and right next to Disney's Boardwalk. You can walk to Epcot and DHS (or take the boat) and you're right there in the middle of my favorite area of Disney. If you got a good deal at either the Swan or Dolphin, I'd say they are nicer than Disney deluxe resorts and a fraction of the cost (you will have a small "resort fee" daily though).

I hope this helps get your holiday started planning!
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Old 08-19-2012, 01:56 PM   #8
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WBC has a shuttle to the parks.. Check out the Bonnet Creek thread. http://www.disboards.com/showthread.php?t=2739937. You can get a one bed condo fairly cheap.

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Old 08-20-2012, 01:00 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by adele1991 View Post
We are not hiring a car as i cant drive and my partner drives for a living so wants a rest. We wont be able to afford 7 nights disney and 7 night onsite universal as coming from the uk this is very expensive
Based off that, I might recommend rather than staying onsite at Disney, You can do a larger portion of your stay (week and 1/2 maybe) 'offsite' at one of the few less expensive properties that offer decent Disney Transportation within the arches. I see others have already mentioned them, but I'll recap. You may want to compare the rates you can get at each option to see what would best fit into your budget. Unfortunately, I don't know if any of these hotels offer airport transportation, but you are likely going to need to arrange transportation to the hotel from the airport on your own.

Downtown Disney Hotels - Several of them to choose from, and they are situated right outside Downtown Disney. i believe the shuttle service to the Disney Parks is better than most offsite locations, and the Downtown Disney Hilton i believe also gives you access to EMH at the parks. It's an easy walk from these hotels to either DTD or the Crossroads shopping center area which will have several decent places to eat.

Swan/Dolphin - Most people consider them Disney onsite since they get direct access to traditional Disney TRansportation (not sure about Magic Express), and are situated next to the Boardwalk and Yacht/Beach club. They however are not operated by Disney, so are usually less expensive than comparable onsite Disney hotels with higher quality accommodations.

Bonnet Creek Area (Inside the arches next door to the Caribbean Beach Resort/ POP/ AOA, but technically offsite) :

Hilton/Waldorf Astoria - I hear good things about these 2 hotels. There is a thread here about them which you can get more details about them. From what I understand, they have a pretty good shuttle service to the parks, and the hotels themselves are quite nice.

Wyndham Grand Orlando @ Bonnet Creek - A nice traditional hotel that shares it's location and amenities with the neighboring Timeshare property. It has a nice shuttle service to the parks, but also a daily resort fee above your quoted rates.

Wyndham Bonnet Creek Resort - The Timeshare property. This is not a traditional hotel, so some things like daily maid service aren't included. It does have a good park shuttle service you can use. Since it's a timeshare resort, rates can vary since you'll be renting from owners and not the resort directly. There are several which people on the DIS have had good experiences with [checkout the I Looooove Bonnet Creek thread for more info]. A couple nice things about staying at the timeshare resort vs. a hotel for your trip are that the unit has a washer/dryer located inside your room. With a 2 week stay, that means you can do some laundry during your stay so you don't have to pack as much... or take time out of your vacation experience to sit in a hotel laundrymat. The unit/condo also has a kitchen in it. Depending on your budget and vacation style, This can come in handy since you can use a service like Garden Grocer to deliver some groceries to you at the resort and then eat in your room occasionally cheaper than you could if you were to eat out. [Even if you just eat breakfast before you leave for the day, over 2 weeks the savings from eating n the room vs. out can add up]. I've also found that it's nice having the ability to refrigerate and store, and then reheat later, leftovers I may have from other meals I've had while on vacation.

FWIW, i don't believe any of these options have regular shuttle service to Universal or Seaworld, but you can always utilize a taxi or shared shuttle service to the other parks, or if your budget allows due to the Disney stay savings, relocate to someplace closer to those parks at the end of your stay.
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Old 08-20-2012, 09:11 PM   #10
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I would defintaely stay on property if you wont have a car. You will have free transportation on MDE from the airport to the resort. Maybe you can rent a car for a few days and hit up some of the other off property things you want to see.
Bonnet Creek is also a good suggestion for a more budget friendly option, but I would want a car for there.
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Old 08-20-2012, 09:49 PM   #11
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Walt Disney World is huge! Approx. 121 square km if my math is correct. If you want to visit Disney, you will either need to rent a car (if staying offsite) or stay onsite at a Disney hotel and use the free transportation (either bus, ferry, or monorail). Not sure when your trip is, but the price of the hotels vary depending on the time of year you visit.

The "value resorts" are less expensive than other Disney hotels. In addition, I think guests from overseas often get great deals (discounts on packages, free dining, etc.) because Disney wants you to come!

You could easily spend 2 weeks just in Disney. In addition to the 4 parks, there is a shopping area (Downtown Dinsey), golf, mini-golf, two water parks, a bowling alley (opening soon), etc. - lots to do besides ride the rides.

This site is a great place to gets lots of information. You have come to the right place!
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Old 08-21-2012, 09:40 AM   #12
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I would suggest a couple places.

Hiton at WDW is pretty much at DTD. They have a bus to all the Disney parks and across the street you can pick up Disney transportation to everywhere else. They also have access to EMH. Check frequently they tend to drop the prices especially if they are not full at the last minute. This summer I was able to get $79 a night there.

Hilton Bonnet Creek is in a pocket on Disney property. This is a beautiful hotel, but I have not seen less then $109 a night.

Look at the Disney Value resorts. Not sure when you are going but as an example they offer a discounted rate for late summer as low as $66 a night. Check out mousesavers.com She keeps an up to date list of discounts.

Mears can be arranged from any hotel and they will drop you off at other attractions for a fee.

Other hotels close to SW - Doubletree at SW or Hilton Orlando.
Universal - Hyatt Place across the street is very nice

Sounds like you will have to use taxis or Mears shuttle to get some places.
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