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Old 10-07-2012, 02:34 PM   #46
Granny square
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We typically stay for at least a couple of weeks and usually split between on and off. They each have positives. Transportation wise, unless we have kids or part of our party on a different schedule we can usually make better time driving. But the busses are more carefree and easy if you don't like driving.

We usually get a condo for the second week (silver lake) this trip and it is all of 2 minutes from ak, we hate eating out every meal so cooking several meals in (or loading the crock pot) is a great choice for us.

First week we are at akv and it is beautiful. That is my favorite thing about it. And the smell!
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Old 10-07-2012, 03:06 PM   #47
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last christmas we stayed at the best western in downtown disney. We had transportation to the parks that was great (except new years eve, which was a hot mess). We saved a ton over staying on site. we could see wishes from the hotel.

If you have 5 people in your family staying off site makes a lot of sense - most of the reasonably priced onsite places are made for 4.
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Old 10-07-2012, 05:21 PM   #48
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Originally Posted by eliza61 View Post
Wow talk about a bit of dramatization. Trekk around a parking lot? It;s called simply writing down the row you parked in. It's a lot not the african safari. LOL Sorry I've never wandered aimlessly around a lot. In fact a HS they make a huge, huge deal of telling you where you parked when you get on the tram.
Dramatization? Did I say wandering aimlessly? I said trekking across a mega-sized parking lot. Trekking means walking a long distance; it does not mean being lost. I never assumed that anyone was stupid enough not to remember in which area he parked.

You are right that leaving the Magic Kingdom at night (assuming you mean after the fireworks; thus, with 10,000 or so of your closest friends) may mean waiting through three boats to Wilderness Lodge. But, to put that into perspective, leaving Magic Kingdom at that time of night is going to be difficult no matter how you do it: If you're heading for your own car, you're going to wait through multiple monorails/ferries. If you're going to a bus/boat, you're going to wait too. I see no advantage either way in that situation, but it's more a commentary on the time of day rather than the transportation system. The only people who don't wait at that time are the people staying in The Contemporary -- and even they are caught in the crowds at the gate.

Last edited by MrsPete; 10-07-2012 at 05:34 PM.
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Old 10-07-2012, 05:25 PM   #49
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last christmas we stayed at the best western in downtown disney. We had transportation to the parks that was great (except new years eve, which was a hot mess). We saved a ton over staying on site. we could see wishes from the hotel.

If you have 5 people in your family staying off site makes a lot of sense - most of the reasonably priced onsite places are made for 4.
WE have 5 people and I don't stay offsite. Sure you can get more space and yes it is cheaper. Like someone else said, when I stay in a condo, I feel like I am working. No maid service and I don't even want to do one load of towels.

ALso, and this is a big difference. I was born in Orlando, I have most of my family in Orlando. I have NO desire to stay offsite and see any of Orlando. That is where I go to see family or just spend the day. When I go to WDW I want to stay at WDW and never leave. DH's family loves to stay offsite, lots of people do. If I have to stay offsite, I don't go.
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Old 10-07-2012, 05:26 PM   #50
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Totally agree. Even after driving ourselves on several trips, we still get turned around sometimes. We also had the very unpleasant experience on our last trip of having the tram drop us off quite a ways from our car in the middle of a downpour - complete with lightning popping all over the place. Scary experience. And of course we were soaked by the time we got in the car.
Oh, I forgot I have a rain story: Last summer my husband attended a conference at an off-site resort. The kids and I took the hotel shuttle to the parks, and we arranged to be picked up at a certain time. When we showed up in the appointed parking lot, the hotel shuttle was nowhere to be seen -- and it was pouring as only Florida rain can pour. He was a good 30 minutes late, and you can bet he didn't receive a tip that day. Disney transportation has never left us stranded like that.
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Old 10-07-2012, 05:30 PM   #51
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How can you disagree with someone posting their experience?
When a person has posted an extreme situation (car under ideal circumstances vs. bus to the resort located to the farthest from the parks) and presents it as a truism . . . yes, I can say that life isn't going to work out that same way for everyone. We could give examples of personal cars being faster from this point to that point. We could give examples of the busses being faster from this point to that point. Sometimes one will win, sometimes the other will win. But MOST OF THE TIME Disney's transporation is going to be faster. They've stacked the deck in their own favor; they want this perk to appeal to people so they'll pay for onsite hotel rooms.

Last edited by MrsPete; 10-07-2012 at 05:36 PM.
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Old 10-07-2012, 05:50 PM   #52
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Originally Posted by MrsPete
When a person has posted an extreme situation (car under ideal circumstances vs. bus to the resort located to the farthest from the parks) and presents it as a truism . . . yes, I can say that life isn't going to work out that same way for everyone. We could give examples of personal cars being faster from this point to that point. We could give examples of the busses being faster from this point to that point. Sometimes one will win, sometimes the other will win. But MOST OF THE TIME Disney's transporation is going to be faster. They've stacked the deck in their own favor; they want this perk to appeal to people so they'll pay for onsite hotel rooms.
My bad I did not know the webster dictionary definition of "Trekking" and if they weren't lost why would they be "trekking", the tram lets you off at your lot or row and you walk to your car. No mega sized any thing involved. at most we have to walk ( and I total admit walking and treking conjure up 2 way different scenerios to me) to the end of the row.

Lol if they've stacked the deck so heavily in favor , why do they always tell you to leave one hour for travel time, no matter where you go? 15 years and there only time Disney trsns has been quicker is mk to a mk resort or when we walk. In fact the sales pitch 99% of the time is definitely the convenience of not having to drive, it is Never the speed.
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Old 10-07-2012, 05:52 PM   #53
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Sorry, outside of Epcot resort where you can walk, I yet to hear speed described as a virtue. Just my experience and yep we have timed many of our trips.

I must not be the only disser who seems to think the busses are faster.

http://www.disboards.com/showthread....sus+car&page=3

one of the latest. general consensus seems to be buses are great for relaxing and not worrying about driving. cars are great for getting around quicker.
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Old 10-07-2012, 06:03 PM   #54
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We definitely wouldn't find 10 nights crammed into one hotel room magical at all, we need our privacy! We would need two rooms making it double the price- I costed it up and it's over £2000 for 2 rooms for 7 nights and tickets.

Mum never cooks much other then making sandwiches or salads for breakfast or lunch. Also it's really no bother to mum to chuck a load of washing in when we get back, and she only washes the towels a few times in the whole stay because there's always plenty.

Walmart to us UK people is an attraction of it's own- we can easily spend the morning wandering around! Having the freedom to pop into a supermarket or Walgreens on the way back for stuff we need is great.

It never takes more then 15-20 minutes for us to get to a Disney park. The only time we've been lost recently was trying to get to the Beach Club for Beaches & Cream! The roads are well signed onsite but not so much offsite. I personally LOVE taking the ferryboat over the lagoon to MK.
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Old 10-07-2012, 06:07 PM   #55
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We always stay at Buena Vista Suites. We are so close to the Parks, they have a nice pool, beautiful rooms, free breakfast buffet every morning ( and it's really nice!), free parking and we were really close to a Walmart to pick up food and other items we needed. Even with renting a car we saved almost $700. Unless things have changed since 2010, I can't imagine staying any place else.
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Old 10-07-2012, 06:17 PM   #56
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The other thing is that the Buena Vista Suites had bus transportation to the parks for free if you needed it. I always watch for deals and in 2010 we paid $89 a night. The main room has two beds which the two girls slept in one and dh and I took the other. There is another room with a pull-out couch that my teen son slept on. Both rooms had flat screen tvs and we also had a fridge and microwave. It was really nice
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Old 10-07-2012, 06:19 PM   #57
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We've had just as great a time when we've stayed offsite. One year we rented a house in the Emerald Island subdivision through http://www.orlando4villas.com. This is the house we rented:
http://www.orlando4villas.com/house/1030/

Other times, we've scored fantastic rates at the Swan or Dolphin. A couple of times we just stayed at Universal onsite the entire time and drove to WDW..

We have stayed onsite at all of the deluxe and DVC villas. We're DVC members now and usually stay in a villa. CSR is our favorite overall with AKV or WL very close behind.
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Old 10-07-2012, 06:51 PM   #58
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Originally Posted by MrsPete View Post
When a person has posted an extreme situation (car under ideal circumstances vs. bus to the resort located to the farthest from the parks) and presents it as a truism . . . yes, I can say that life isn't going to work out that same way for everyone. .
Our rental house is father away than the resort located to the farthest from the parks. It was a good comparison considering we had farther to go than they did. I didn't say it was always the fastest. My comment was aimed towards people who say offsite is always the worst case scenario.
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Old 10-07-2012, 06:52 PM   #59
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We always get a AAA Diamond Pass and park in that area. It's an easy walk from the park/TTC entrance. I can walk to the car almost as quickly as I walk to the bus stop(except MK of course). The difference is that when I get to the car, I can get in and leave but when I get to the bus stop, I have to wait for a bus to come and for the people in front of me to board. I once waited 45 minutes for a bus to Pop. I waited 20-30 minutes each morning, and in that time, I could be at the entrance to any park or the TTC after leaving my rental home. The "shortcut" is Sherbeth Road and not hard at all to find. As a PP mentioned, any rental home should give you this info.

It is really just matter of preference. If I stayed onsite, I would still drive to the parks. I would rather sit in the AC with just my smelly family than to be in a crowded bus with everyone's stinky family, not to mention crying children.
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Old 10-07-2012, 07:18 PM   #60
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Like danygirl, we had a great stay at Best Western DTD near Christmas time. This is the only DTD hotel that does not charge a parking fee (as far as I know), and we never used the car after we arrived. My idea of a great vacation does not involve driving in an unfamiliar town, as I am "directionally challenged" and don't like to drive that much. I would also add that we park hop, and the buses were convenient. We've enjoyed staying on site before, but we saved over $40 per night by staying at DTD, and we were only at the hotel to get some sleep (we stay at the parks from rope drop to close). It was also an easy, pleasant walk to DTD. Hope to go back this December.
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