car rental vs other forms of transportation for our first few days at WDW

Discussion in 'Transportation' started by Bob Ray, Nov 7, 2018.

  1. Bob Ray

    Bob Ray Earning My Ears

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    Wednesday before Thanksgiving we (2 adults, 2 kids) arrive MCO 10am, rent SUV big enough to fit all our luggage. Drive to Kennedy space center and kayaking. Checkin at POP that night, about 10:30. Now here is where I've got some scenarios to decide on...
    A. Return SUV Wednesday night to Swan Hotel since I believe it's closest to POP and use other forms of transportation the rest of the time. (Disney buses to resorts on Thursday. Uber to Seaworld & back on Friday)
    B. Keep rental, pay to park at POP. Thursday drive it to the Boardwalk area hotels to tour their Christmas decorations (Dolphin, Swan, BC, YC and Boardwalk).
    1. Would I have to pay to park there?
    2. Which resort should I park at?
    Then drive to AKL for a tour if I have time, or skip it.
    Then drive SUV to WL or FW and transport to Backyard BBQ for 5pm Thanksgiving meal. Tour RV loops afterwards, then take SUV back to POP, again paying to park.
    3. Do I have to keep paying to park at different resorts if I'm just there a couple hours?
    Black Friday, checkout of POP. Drive SUV to WL to checkin. Drive SUV to Seaworld for the day. Drive SUV to Car Care Center Friday night to return rental.
    4. I'm confused on the parking fees at resorts and if my total cost in all this is worth the time I'd save using SUV instead of WDW buses.
    The rest of our time is at parks & WL. Magic Express back to MCO on last day...
     
  2. GADisneyDad14

    GADisneyDad14 TPAS Moderator Moderator

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    @Bob Ray, FYI, moved your post to the Transportation thread. The folks here should be able to help.
     
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  4. Bob Ray

    Bob Ray Earning My Ears

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    Thanks. I didn't scroll down far enough to see the Transportaion thread.
    Any help would be greatly appreciated!
     
  5. Huff

    Huff DIS Veteran

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    Do you really need a car while at WDW? Disney transportation will take you anywhere you want for free.
    Rent the car at MCO just for the day, visit Kennedy then return the car to MCO that evening.
    Take Disney Magical Express bus for free to POP and again free to return back to MCO.

    You'll have to reserve your spots on the bus before your trip.
     
  6. Ralph&Pam

    Ralph&Pam DIS Veteran

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    A. Alamo is at the Swan’s sister hotel, the Dolphin. It has its own entrance drive, so if you do this, make certain you return the car to the valet at the right place and obtain a receipt for the drop off. Alamo will email you your final receipt for the rental. This is likely the least expensive option, at the cost of spending more time getting around.

    B.1. You can visit other Disney resorts to eat, shop, or use the entertainment features without paying for parking. The Swan and Dolphin may have their own parking regulations.
    B.2. Park at the YC, BC, or BW, although parking may be at a premium for day visitors due to the holiday. Under those circumstances, you may not be allowed to park at the YC or BC without a dining reservation. The BW is a designated entertainment area, so they usually try to accommodate day visitors. In any case, do NOT park at a resort and then visit a theme park (a move that can lead to some intense discussions on this board).
    B.3. No. The resort parking fees are for overnight guests staying at the resort. One exception is valet parking (currnetly $33 per day). You can pay to valet at one Disney resort location and you are then covered for the day at the other Disney resorts.
    B.4. You will have to trade off the cost of overnight parking at Pop plus the extra time for the rental car vs. the convenience of having the car compared to Disney transportation plus Uber/Lyft. Very much a personal decision.
     
  7. lambdabeta

    lambdabeta DIS Veteran

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    To answer your question about parking. You don't have to pay to park at any of the other Disney resorts you visit. I am not sure about Dolphin/Swan since they aren't owned by Disney. Your parking is based only on the resort you stay at. If you keep the SUV you will pay $13/night for however many nights you have it at POP. When you transfer to WL the parking is $24/night because it is a deluxe hotel but it doesn't seem like you will have the SUV overnight so you won't pay to park. Disney doesn't charge to park at the different resorts on an hourly basis. The only problem you may have is if you don't have an ADR the other resorts may not let you park just to look around. It has been hit or miss according to others.

    Your scenario sounds like a good reason to keep the SUV. You can't get a bus from resort to resort. You would have to go to either a park first or DS and then get a bus. Also going to Seaworld might be a savings with the rental vs. Uber/Lyft. It really is up to you. I hope you enjoy your trip.
     
  8. kaytieeldr

    kaytieeldr Post hoc, ergo propter hoc

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    Dolphin and Swan charge everyone to park.
     
  9. Bob Ray

    Bob Ray Earning My Ears

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    Great info, thanks!
    Yes return it to Dolphin, I just got them swapped. Rental prices are so high right now, I'm going to stick with my 1 day reservation from MCO, returning it to Dolphin Thursday morning and pay $13 to park one night. To keep the SUV longer, it would cost about $110 more each day. Plus parking fees for additional nights. Plus parking fee at Seaworld. I'd rather spend $40-50 on Uber/Lyft on Friday, than $255 plus to keep the rental. So I'll drop it off at Dolphin Thursday, then we start our tour of BW loop right there. Then take a resort bus to MK. Then boat to FW for Mickey's BBQ.
     
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  10. kaytieeldr

    kaytieeldr Post hoc, ergo propter hoc

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    De nada. You would be surprised how many people do. Just don't want anyone going to the wrong location :)
     
  11. foodiddiedoo

    foodiddiedoo Mouseketeer

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    I know you might have already decided to return the car, but have you looked into the price difference between renting an SUV and a minivan? When planning my last trip and my upcoming trip renting an SUV that seats 7 cost about 100 dollars a day more than renting a minivan does. The hassle of having to swap cars and take resort transportation and changing resorts and then pay for UBER/Lyft might outweigh a 15-20 dollar a day price difference, but not 100 dollars.
     
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  12. Bob Ray

    Bob Ray Earning My Ears

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    Rental rates were probably much better months ago. But yeah, a minivan is $54 extra per day on top of my rate for a Standard SUV I have booked. Maybe too many minivans are already booked and they'd have to bring in more from other locations?
     
  13. foodiddiedoo

    foodiddiedoo Mouseketeer

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    Are you renting a 5 seater or a 7 seater? If it's 5 it's going to be cheaper than a minivan and I probably misunderstood your post.
     
  14. foodiddiedoo

    foodiddiedoo Mouseketeer

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    Also, does your company offer any sort of negotiated rate/code for booking rentals? Within my corporate website we have a list of "Employee Discounts" and when I put in the code for National, Enterprise, and Alamo, rental car prices drop CONSIDERABLY (like 44 dollars a day to rent a minivan vs 100 plus without our employee discount).
     
  15. sam_gordon

    sam_gordon DIS Veteran

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    I know it's a question you didn't ask, but this jumped out at me... if you're landing at MCO at 10a, then you have to deplane, get your luggage, and get your rental car, you're leaving MCO no earlier than 10:30, could be close to 11. It's an hour drive to KSC. KSC closes at 6p. And you're going kayaking? Will you kayak in the dark? I only bring it up because I don't know that you'll really get a decent look at KSC in 6 hours (if not less). DW & I spent 8 hours there a couple years ago and didn't see it all, and that was before they had the Space Shuttle exhibit.

    Just something to think about.
     
  16. Bob Ray

    Bob Ray Earning My Ears

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    Renting Standard SUV which is 5 seater. I do not have any company rate codes or employee discounts. Just a free Alamo account. My rate for the one night (one way MCO to Dolphin) is $96 plus fees. I think it was about $60 a couple months ago, and I should've booked it then.
     
  17. Bob Ray

    Bob Ray Earning My Ears

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    Yes I hope to be at KSC by 11:30 for our short visit. I can see how you'd spend 8 plus hours there. But this looks to be our kids best chance to see some of it. Plus our daughter is free since they're offering free tickets for 5th graders! And yes, kayaking in the dark for a 90 minute biolumenescent tour that starts at 7:30 near the KSC.
     
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