Pros and cons of renting a car?

Discussion in 'Transportation' started by jenrose66, May 16, 2005.

  1. jenrose66

    jenrose66 DIS Veteran

    Mar 17, 2005
    Hi Everyone,

    I was in Disney last July for my honeymoon. We used a town car service to and from the airport and relied on Disney transportation.

    I had no problem with this. When the busses were crowded it didn't bother me a bit. I could sit, stand, whatever, I was just happy to be at Disney (not sure if it had to do with the just being married :goodvibes ).

    Anyway, I've really been preparing for this trip and I'm wondering if I should rent a car. Last trip me and Jake didn't stay at any parks until closing (shame on us) so I didn't experience riding the bus at the end of the night. We also didn't do much resort hopping.

    So far for this trip I have:

    an 8:30 am Segway tour at Epcot
    a p.s. for 8:05 at the Crystal Palace for breakfast
    a p.s for the 1st seating at Hoop de Doo
    a p.s. for 8 p.m. at Yactsman Steakhouse
    I also hope to make it to Kona Cafe for breakfast

    I'm stayinng at PORFQ.

    Like I said before, I don't have a problem with the busses. I actually like them. However, with all of the hopping around I'm gonna do I'm wondering if it would be better to just have my own car.

    If I do rent a car, how is parking. I know theme park parking is free but do I have to pay to park at other resorts? Is navigating around Disney confusing??

    I'm just trying to weigh my options.

    princess: Jen
  2. Disneyjosh229

    Disneyjosh229 Rental Car Guru

    Mar 2, 2005
    If I were you, I would probibly look into renting a car. Even if you just get it and park it at the hotel until you need it, it will be alot faster. If you can read signs you can EASILY navagate the entire Disney property.
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  4. jenrose66

    jenrose66 DIS Veteran

    Mar 17, 2005
    thanks for the reply...I just get nervous driving somewhere different. But then again, I'll probably make Jake drive.

    I'm just thinking time is very important on this vacation and I want to waste as little of it as possible.

    Has anyone rented a car and regretted it?
  5. Disneyjosh229

    Disneyjosh229 Rental Car Guru

    Mar 2, 2005
    Sorry to post again but....

    I dunno how many times you've rented cars before but DONT buy the insurance they offer you. Check with your insurance company but chances are, you are covered in rental cars.
  6. jenrose66

    jenrose66 DIS Veteran

    Mar 17, 2005
    That's funny. I work for an insurance company so I know that in most cases one should never buy the insurance for a rental car :)

    It's nice to know about how insurance works but it also makes you very paranoid about driving...When you know how much that speeding ticket will cost you...or the horror stories I hear every day when someone contacts me about a claim...

    Anyway, thanks for posting again and if I rent the car I won't buy the extra insurance.
  7. mrslur

    mrslur Mouseketeer

    Mar 21, 2005
    Here's what we're doing - we're using a town car service with the 30 minutes grocery stop and using a taxi to get back to BWV the 2 or 3 nights that we're eating dinner at another resort. We'll use Disney transportation for everything else. This is still cheaper than any rental car rate I've been able to find for our visit.
  8. KristinU

    KristinU DIS Veteran

    Mar 25, 2000
    I'd go for a rental if I were you with the hopping around that you're planning. We traveled with my parents on our last trip and they did the Segway tour (and loved it!). I think theirs was the 8:30 one too, if memory serves me right. Since resort transportation wasn't running as early as the designated time they had to be there I drove them over to the front of Epcot and dropped them off. I think the only other alternative would have been for them to take a cab had we not had a rental, we had inquired about them entering through International Gateway since we were at BWV and we were told no. So between that and the meal plans you have I'd go for a cheapie rental. A car is also nice for go to and from the water parks since those busses aren't as frequent, oh and its great for shopping trips to Downtown Disney (but DH and I prefer the busses for hitting PI so we can both indulge ;) )

    Navigating Orlando and WDW is very easy - think of it this way: the area really is built around tourism, so the signs are very good and easy to read. You'll want to have some cash for tolls from the airport, but it's not much. Once on property you won't have to pay to park anywhere as resort guests. They'll give you a parking pass to put in your front window. They do check for PS's when you park at both the Poly and the Contemporary (or at least they have when we've driven there to eat) but other resorts allow you to park and visit with no questions asked.

    Have a great time!
  9. TroyWDW

    TroyWDW Mouseketeer

    Nov 20, 2000
    Our first trip many years ago we used the bus transportation, but ever since we've had a rental car. We now routinely stray off property and are very comfortable driving to many other Orlando locations.

    Going from POR to any other WDW destination can be achieved by going to Buena Vista Drive and then following the signs. All of the following locations can be reached by making one turn from Buena Vista Drive. You may travel another mile or two, but it only requires one turn.

    Downtown Disney
    Pleasure Island
    Typhoon Lagoon
    Carribean Beach Resort
    Pop Century
    Yacht Club / Beach Club Resorts
    Swan / Dolphin
    Fantasia Golf
    MGM Studios
    Magic Kingdom
    Coronado Springs
    Blizzard Beach
    Animal Kingdom
    Animal Kingdom Lodge

    There are lots of purple signs to assist you.

    Returning to POR will typically be a simple retrace of your route. Sometimes the signs are a little vague and say something like: "All Guest Areas". Just trust the sign and go with the flow and later on the signs will get more descriptive. There won't be individual signs along the way saying to turn here for Port Orleans. You will need to get a feel for following signs to Downtown Disney and then turning off onto Bonnet Creek Pkwy.

    There is a Disney Vacation Club water tower at the corner of Buena Vista Drive and Bonnet Creek Pkwy (hard to miss). Turn there and POR is ~1 mile down on the right. Take a look at Lake Buena Vista Florida on

    I would recommend using the car for all destinations except Magic Kingdom. It is hard to beat the ease of the bus to MK. The roads around MK get a little interesting due to the number of twists and turns. It's easy to lose your sense of direction, but there really are only a few roads and you just follow them around. There are lots of signs indicating where to turn for the various resorts and golf courses near MK. The big key is to be in the far right lane when you go through the Magic Kingdom toll plaza to be able to exit to the right for the access road to all of the MK resorts, etc.

    Having a car really makes it easy to explore other areas of WDW. Please feel free to ask questions about specific locations.

  10. DennisP

    DennisP I owe, I owe. So its off to work I go!!

    Feb 11, 2004
    I always rented a car when in WDW. It gives you more freedom. However, check with the rental car agencies. Florida (and other states) usually don't rent cars to individuals under 25. My DS is under 25 and went to Florida (Jacksonville) on a business trip for a few days. He found only 1 car agency that would even consider renting him a car and the surcharge for being under the age of 25 was about $20/day. He finally decided to take a taxi from the airport to the hotel.
  11. agnes!

    agnes! <marquee behavior=alternate><font color=darkorchid

    Apr 17, 2000

    I thought that when guests(especially ones staying at Epcot resorts) had tours booked (that started) inside Epcot they were allowed to enter through International Gateway and then to proceed to their destination...hmmm, must do more research....

  12. DebbieB

    DebbieB DIS Veteran

    Aug 24, 1999
    Keep watching the rates. I had a full size from National last week for 6 days for $97! I used the priceless contract code plus a $20 entertainment coupon. We only used the bus twice to MK, the rest of the time drove. It's very easy to find your way around WDW and surrouding areas (we also went to the Outlets).
  13. Aimeedyan

    Aimeedyan <font color=blue>Why get all excited about somethi

    Feb 22, 2004
    I def think it's worth it to rent a car, it gives so much freedom and saves so much money on towncars, taxis, etc. You can get a compact for well under $100 for a week, and larger cars under $100 too if you look for the right deals!

    This trip, we rented a car after 2 days and then just dropped it off at the airport when leaving. We were able to run to Walgreens if we needed something, hop to other resorts quickly, get to the parks quickly, head to DTD, go outlet mall shopping, easily get to and leave Blizzard Beach, etc. Parking at the parks is free and easy to do - we never had to walk more than a few feet to the tram that takes you to the front door. Parking at resorts is free, too. If you have a PS at a restaurant somewhere else you just tell the guard that when you pull in.

    It's a must for us, we don't like wasting 1 hour or more to get from park to park, we're able to do more and be much more flexible with our schedule.


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