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Old 07-17-2014, 09:05 AM   #1
Earning My Ears
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Pop vs. AoA

I know there have been several threads about this topic already but I guess I just still don't feel satisfied with the information available. I thought I was set on art of animation but now I'm wavering- and since July 30th is the date for 2015 packages to be released I have to make a decision.
My fiancée and I are going down next October for an 8-night, 9-day honeymoon. He's never been to disney world and I've been about 10 times. We will be on the deluxe dining plan & money is complicated, since we've been budgeting for AoA.
I stayed at AoA last summer with my family and I absolutely loved it. However, finding nemo is my favorite movie of all time & my family has 6 people so the suite worked well. We were only there for 4 days so the pool looked amazing but I never got to try it. I was so impressed with the gift shop and the design of everything that I would love to go back. However, I know the Ariel rooms aren't discounted and it's about an 8-10 minute walk to the main lobby.
I've never stayed at POP so I don't really know much about it.
My fiancée claims that 8-10 minutes won't bother him for a walk twice a day but I don't think he realizes how tired the parks can make you.

Any help would be appreciative!
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Old 07-17-2014, 09:51 AM   #2
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POP is also a great resort -- the Gift shop is pretty much the same -- and Century Hall is layed out the same as Animation hall.

Of course, you cannot swim Big Blue if you are at POP (but the talking under the water aspect is overly hyped and rare) but the Hippy Dippy Pool at Pop is just as awesome.

You can still walk over from POP to AOA to check out the scenery as well -- it's a nice walk .
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Old 07-17-2014, 10:12 AM   #3
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If you stay at POP you can still use AoA Food Court, Gift Shop, Buses, etc the only thing you can't do is use the pool. We always head over the bridge to eat and wander around. Unless the pool is a must do for you I would book POP if it's going to save you lots of money.

We love POP, is Disney in an adult way, beautiful landscaping, the 50's are fairly quiet with a great quiet pool that we always can get loungers, tables etc. We book standard lake view room and .... standard value rates with this view can't be beat. Under 5 minute walk to food court, buses etc. Yes, LM rooms are removed from rest of resort since they were buildings already on property when they built it.

If you are looking for fun pool time, why not include the water park option. Blizzard Beach is fun and has some great slides, Typhoon Lagoon is lush and tropical laid back. You could squeeze in a couple mornings at each then head to parks.

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Old 07-17-2014, 10:22 AM   #4
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We stayed last Dec in Finding Nemo suites and loved it. This past May we tried the Little Mermaid rooms and really did not like the walk. You are right after a long day in the park and a bus ride back, the walk seems very far. Also, I do not understand why they would not have a refill machine by that pool. You will not walk all the way back for a refill in your cup. I would do Pop over Mermaid rooms for sure.
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Old 07-17-2014, 10:26 AM   #5
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I agree with others......book Pop.

But......if there is a free dining promotion that comes out next year during your October timeframe, I would consider switching to a moderate resort for your honeymoon. You could pay the difference to upgrade to Deluxe dining if you want.
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Old 07-17-2014, 10:40 AM   #6
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Okay- so then my next question is which type of room to book? I would prefer a king bed and not a far walk. Those are both top priority- then a nice view. What do you think??
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Old 07-18-2014, 08:50 AM   #7
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Originally Posted by eelinds View Post
Okay- so then my next question is which type of room to book? I would prefer a king bed and not a far walk. Those are both top priority- then a nice view. What do you think??
Nowhere on POP property is a long walk, max would probably be about 5-8 mins. You can request a King bed however it is not a guarantee. King bed requests are popular. I am a lover of POP & have only ever stayed there so for me to say this is very out of character, lol. If a King Bed is important then I would recommend a moderate due to the fact that you can book King bed rooms and will be guaranteed a King bed. That's just my opinion and I'm sure you will choose what's best for you.

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Old 07-18-2014, 10:48 AM   #8
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Suggesting AoA

I had LM booked last Feb until free dining came out so I switched to Pop. I have stayed at Pop more than any other resort. I have to tell you that I was very disappointed. As for the walk, I was given a room at the extreme end of the "bowling pin" building (50's?) and had the last room on the fourth floor.
The walk was further than the LM room I stayed in this past February.
I felt there was no comparison between AoA and POP. In LM I was in a room over looking the pool in Building 8. Even the smaller pools are larger and more beautiful.
The commissary has a wider variety food at AoA, the decor/themes appealed to me. Pop was in need of repainting/dated but that may be because I stayed there when it opened. If you are going to make use of the facilities at AoA you will be doing a lot of walking to get there. It's true, a drinks refill station nearer to LM building, would be nice. We drink beer, so........

Finally I have to agree with another poster, if any kind of a discount comes out, and you can manage it, you might book at a Moderate. We have stayed at Coronado (quiet, romantic, more adult) and POR, beautiful grounds, great facilities. Both are worth the extra IMHO.
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Old 07-18-2014, 10:59 AM   #9
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Originally Posted by eelinds View Post
Okay- so then my next question is which type of room to book? I would prefer a king bed and not a far walk. Those are both top priority- then a nice view. What do you think??
You cannot book a King bed at the values, but can at other resorts (not sure which ones, but I know Coronado Springs has a king category). You can request one, but there are not many and it shouldn't be something you count on. Most of the rooms at Pop are double beds, which is why I wouldn't stay there for my honeymoon. If it were me, I'd stay at CSR and book a king room.
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Old 07-18-2014, 11:10 AM   #10
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Originally Posted by shyjade View Post
You cannot book a King bed at the values, but can at other resorts (not sure which ones, but I know Coronado Springs has a king category).
All the moderates, and only the moderates, have King as a bookable category. All others are by request.
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Old 07-18-2014, 11:14 AM   #11
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After reading your thread I got two suggestions...

1) Why not staying moderate, instead? That way you would get a better dining plan (and a better hotel!) ...

2) IMO, the Deluxe Dining plan is A LOT of/too much food for a "healthy human being" (let's put it this way, maybe that's just me, but I can't see how you can eat so much and not get overweight unless you have some kind of superpower and/or train 4 hours a day)... It's not just the 3 complete meals, it's also the appetizers. DH and I tried it for a short stay in 2012 and after 2 days, we were actually refusing appetizers or desserts because we were full. And trust me, we were not hungry for the snacks. For a 2 nights/3 days stay, we lost 4 snacks.

It is also very expensive...

I think if you budget a little, you could get the normal dining plan (free), keep most QS for breakfast and then, you'd be able to eat exactly where you want to eat and save money by paying some meals OOP!

Also, I confirm that you can book a king bed in some moderate resorts (it wasn't available for our Honeymoon in POFQ though) but not at the values.

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Old 07-18-2014, 11:25 AM   #12
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I love both Pop and AoA. I have stayed in the LM rooms twice now. I've stayed at Pop about 6 times....in rooms as far from the main bldg as possible. The walk wasn't bad. And those LM rooms? So much fun, and we loved the LM pool as well as the main pool. The walk from the main bldg to the LM rooms? Just not all that awful. The walk is almost pleasant....the theming is so nice. I can't imagine ruling out a resort because of a possible 2 min longer walk back to the room. But, that's just me.

To the OP...have you considered staying at a moderate and going with the regular dining plan? The deluxe plan is a ton of food (the one time we did it, we booked a late breakfast and then a signature dining dinner, but man, we spent a fair amount of time eating!). I think I would rather a nicer resort, with a bit less food. PO would be so beautiful for a honeymoon.
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Old 07-18-2014, 01:38 PM   #13
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Originally Posted by goofy4tink View Post
PO would be so beautiful for a honeymoon.
Stayed at POFQ for my honeymoon. POR or POFQ are solid honeymoon choices.
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Old 07-18-2014, 01:48 PM   #14
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I've stayed at both, at AoA in a standard room & a suite.

AoA is a beautiful and fantastically decorated and very "disney" resort. The walk to the LM rooms is long, and tiring, even if you cut across the parking lot like we did each night. The bus systems are about the same as Pop, though the food court is superior.

Pop you can request to be much closer to the main lobby area without paying for a premium room/location (I usually request 50's). The pools are all standard, a nice way to relax midday or after a day in the parks, food court is pretty standard, with standard choices, and the bus system is again, pretty standard, the biggest lines you'll find is coming home after fireworks from MK.

As for comparing, if money is tight, go for Pop!! It's cheaper, and practically the same resort, and you can get a discount on the rooms. You can still walk over to AoA to use the food court & busses over there instead of Pop's, which we do frequently when staying at Pop. I absolutely LOVE AoA and would love to stay there more often, but for a standard value room, it's just not worth it to me.
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