AKL Lovers - tell me why the bus ride issue doesn't bother you?

Discussion in 'Disney Resorts' started by DisneyDoc5, Jun 25, 2013.

  1. DisneyDoc5

    DisneyDoc5 Making memories...

    May 7, 2008
    AKL Lovers,

    I am SURE you are sick of talking about this...but help out a fellow diser trying to convince the family why the bus ride to all parks isn't a deal breaker with AKL.

    We love Poly and BC/YC, so transportation convenience has always been a consideration for us (especially DH:rolleyes:). That being said, we really don't mind the bus itself, enjoy talking to others, etc. So I ask, for those of you that may have avoided it for this reason and then tried it, did the bus to all parks situation bother you, or do you love the resort enough it doesn't matter? Renting a car really isn't something we want to do.

    I value the opinions of you all! Thank you for your time!:flower3:
  2. DisneyDoc5

    DisneyDoc5 Making memories...

    May 7, 2008
    moderator, I meant to post this on the Resort Board...should it be moved? Sorry about that.:)
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  4. KiminChicago

    KiminChicago DIS Veteran

    Aug 19, 1999
    We are DVC members and our home resort is AKL, so obviously the bus rides don't bother us! That being said, it is also true that we are not the "commando" park-touring types that complain that the busses are too slow or take too long. I like to relax when I'm on vacation, and that includes not driving anywhere. We try to just go with the flow and avoid trying to get to a park right at opening or leave a park right at closing so we can avoid the extremely crowded busses at those times.
  5. DisneyDoc5

    DisneyDoc5 Making memories...

    May 7, 2008
    we are getting more laid back with each trip as well, but we still like rope drop. Thanks!
  6. Bob NC

    Bob NC DIS Veteran<br><font color="red">I am a trained pr

    Mar 3, 2000
    From AKL to MK, the farthest park, is less than 13 minutes. From other resorts maybe you are talking 7 or 8 minutes.

    Are you really going to rule out a resort you like due to a 5 minute difference in transportation times?

    We have stayed at AKL twice, I think the biggest difference in bus transportation times is how long you wait at the bus stop for one to show up, not the travel time once on the bus.

    Really, boil this down to how much time you are actually talking about and I don't think it will even be an issue for you.

    I know I have spent a longer amount of time waiting at the Poly Monorail station for a monorail than the amount of time it has taken me to get from AKL to MK by bus.
  7. Lynne M

    Lynne M Moderator Moderator

    Nov 4, 2001
    I never found it that bad, but I'm far from a commando-touring type. I'm almost never in a hurry to get anywhere at WDW, so bus rides don't bother me. I'm sitting down, there's a/c, the scenery's nice, it's all good. :rotfl:

    If you don't mind the buses, and you're not often running to get to ADRs, BBB appointments, or other time-sensitive things, I don't think you'll have a problem at all with the AKL buses. Comparing it to BC/YC, it's probably just about as long a trip to MK from AKL as you're used to at those Epcot area resorts, considering how many stops those buses make.
  8. mickeynut1

    mickeynut1 DIS Veteran

    Apr 16, 2007
    We thought the buses were fine. Since they only go to Kidani and AKL, there is no sharing with any other resort(s). With that said, we are "go with the flow" kind of people and are never in a hurry on vacation, but we never had to wait long for a bus and/or get on a super crowded bus going to the parks or coming back. Everyone's experiences are different and a lot of people feel AKL is too far away with terrible bus service, but that wasn't our experience. We enjoyed the quietness of AKL and were very happy with the buses.
  9. kappyfamily

    kappyfamily DIS Veteran

    Jun 18, 2008
    We stayed in a AKL villa last year and I kept expecting it to be bad, but honestly, we never even noticed it. I'm not kidding, the longest we waited for a bus at the AK stop was 5 minutes. We had one of those trips though. Starting with Magical Express, sitting right there when we arrived. Everytime we would walk up to the monorail it was just pulling up.

    Might have been just a great transportation trips, but it really is NOT a big deal taking the bus from AK. We had a great time just sitting and relaxing. The resort is SOOO worth it.
  10. disnut8

    disnut8 DIS Veteran

    Jan 21, 2005
    I gotta go with this one. I use the term "Disney Time" because when you are there and wanting to go somewhere, the time seems to stretch into hours when in reality it's really just minutes. Think about stopping at a red light. You want to go, go, go but you are held up for what seems to be forever. And it's only 30 seconds.

    And the reverse - you are in the parks and suddenly, it's evening and your time is done for the day. Where did that time go? You hardly did anything.

    Disney time is a killer.

    I wouldn't mark off Animal Kingdom Lodge just because a bus might take a few more minutes.
  11. Shaden

    Shaden DIS Veteran

    Nov 17, 2012
    I totally agree with this, but I can't help but laugh because these are the exact reasons that so many people who go deluxe say deluxe is worth the price/much better then Mods.

    Of course, this is also my exact reasoning for staying at Mods over Deluxe, honestly the bus is like 20 mins in the morning, 20 mins at night max, sometimes less. And on quite a few trips I like touring around the property, although sure, sometimes I just want to get to or from the park. But 20-40 mins a day for transit to save possibly a couple hundred $/DAY ... I look at it like a paid bus ride :)

    AKL busses I am sure wont be a problem, we haven't stayed at AKL, but we have been to it several times, we like Sanaa and Jiko :)
  12. Pakey

    Pakey DIS Veteran

    Aug 29, 2007
    I stay most often at Epcot resorts because of my intense love of all things Epcot, but I found my 3 stays at AKL/AKV to be quite enjoyable. Honestly, I thought the bus rides from there were more relaxing than the Epcot resort buses and I definitely prefer it over the transportation from the MK area resorts.
  13. vinotinto

    vinotinto Just Keep Swimming

    Sep 20, 2009
    We stayed at Poly in Sept '10 and then in AKL in May '11, so about 8 months apart. I liked that the AKL buses picked up AKL and then 1 stop at AKL villas and then went off to our destination. With Poly, the monorail and the buses made multiple stops at other resorts.

    Also, we must have had bad luck with the monorail. We had lots of issues in our stay with monorails being stuck for long periods of time. We also had difficulty getting to park pre-opening breakfasts on time. The Epcot monorail didn't start running until 8 am, which was our ADR time. There wasn't a bus from Poly (I asked at the front desk), so basically we and about 5 other Poly/GF families arrived over 30 minutes late to our Akershus ADR. No such issues when we stayed at AKL.

    In the end, I personally didn't think the transportation from the Poly was *that* convenient. The only real convenience was in terms of the stroller. It was nice not having to fold and get it on the bus. There's a real advantage in just being able to push the stroller in. We had a big stroller at the time (Phil and Ted's), so it was certainly a pain folding it and getting it on the bus. If your kids are still at the stroller age, then the monorail may be worth it. Otherwise, I didn't think it took that much less time (and in some cases it took longer) to get to the parks from AKL.

    I forgot to talk about BC.YC. We've stayed here 3 times and it is our favorite. Epcot and DHS are super convenient, but the bus sharing with other Epcot area resorts to AK and MK is a pain. You'll be half-way to MK on the AKL bus, by the time the bus is picking up Swolphin.
  14. wiigirl

    wiigirl DIS Veteran

    Oct 29, 2012
  15. karenklo

    karenklo DIS Veteran

    Aug 26, 2003
    We did the buses not bother us?? Because we are at Disney!! We are just happy to be there! I have stayed at the Poly,WL, CR,and AKL. The buses were fine from the AKL. 5 more mins on a bus would never keep me from staying again at that beautiful resort!! We always got were we needed to be on time. Enjoy!!

  16. Nancyg56

    Nancyg56 DIS Veteran

    Aug 17, 2005
    WHen I am on vacation, nothing bothers me. I tend to treat the bus ride as part of my vacation, so a few minutes extra is not a deal breaker.
    I don't care where you are staying on property, there is going to be a park that is out of the way of your resort, so I figure that I might as well stay at a resort I enjoy.
  17. OKW Lover

    OKW Lover Retired and living 2 miles from The Castle. DIS Lifetime Sponsor

    Apr 29, 2004
    What bus ride issue? You ride the bus or drive yourself. The monorail resorts still require a bus ride to 2 of the 4 parks. BW/BC/YC/Swolphin still requires a bus ride to 2 of the 4 parks.

    The time on the bus is actually not that great, its the wait for the bus to get there that makes it seem long. I suspect the difference in ride times isn't more than 10 minutes from any other resort.
  18. katrina1122

    katrina1122 My Tag Fairy Tag went bye-bye :(

    Jul 8, 2003
    I find it less travel time than the deluxes that share buses. Sure you can hop a boat or monorail at the others but you have stops to deal with. Akl/Akv are basically on top of each other and then you are off direct to your location.

    AKL is not that far away, really!
  19. Dannek

    Dannek So many roads to ease my soul...

    May 3, 2013
    I had my car at the AKL, and still found myself taking the buses most of the time. The buses are dedicated to just Jambo and Kidani, they arrive regularly, and the lodge is very close to AK of course and HS. Five or ten extra minutes to get to Epcot or MK from HS is no problemo with me. We always had seats and the air conditioning was working well on each bus we rode.

    A few times at AKL we waited under five minutes for a bus, and the longest we waited was about 18 minutes for a HS bus as one left as we were walking to the bus stop. We just missed it and another was there within 20 minutes to take us to HS.

    Each time we left a park we got lucky and never had more than a five minute wait for an AKL bus to arrive.
  20. jperrot1

    jperrot1 Fantasmic

    Sep 2, 2011
    Well, all other deluxe resorts have bus PLUS some other type of transportation (monorail or boat). Some deluxe even gives you a walking route to a park. So all other deluxe resorts have AKL beat in this area of transportation. But, this is a deluxe (luxury) without a doubt. This is the only Disney resort where you wake up in the morning to the view out your room window of African themed animals. The atmosphere at this resort is amazing. Restaurants are great, and the pool is great. What a great place for a romantic getaway. So to answer the question, after being submerged at this great resort.... no, the bus transportation is not an issue.
  21. disneybliss2

    disneybliss2 DIS Veteran

    May 27, 2008
    Prior to staying at AKL on our last trip, I was very worried about the transportation. We are "park commandos" as many on the boards would say. We only go once every two years, so I want to maximize my time while there. Plus, we go in June when it's busy and hot. I don't want to waste a lot of time waiting on a bus early in the morning and possibly get to the park late when we are big on arriving early before rope drop. I was very nervous before our trip because many on the boards make AKL sound so remote--you'd think it was in the heart of Africa itself. :goodvibes

    I was extremely and very pleasantly surprised by the transportation. Transportation was always quick and very reliable. The trip to MK took a little longer, but honestly only by 5 min. In the grand scheme of things, that's not a lot. It's only a stone's throw from AK and took only 5 min. to get to there. To me, it took about the same amount of time to get to Epcot and DHS. As others have mentioned, which is a great point, you may have a short time (distance) to Epcot and HS from BC, but the ride to MK and AK is slowed significantly by the multiple stops the buses BC has to make to the other resorts it shares with. In the end, AKL might actually be faster. It goes straight from AKL to your destination. If you stay at Kidani, it will stop there first and then go to AKL.

    I would not hesitate a minute to stay at AKL again. We LOVED our stay here. However, I have not stayed at BC to have a direct comparison. I know it would be wonderful to be in the "backyard" of Epcot.

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