News for 2021 & 2022:
- No 2022 WDW Disney Armed Forces Salute So Far
- 2022 Disney Armed Forces Salute Timeline
- What to Expect on the Day Disney Announces the WDW 2022 Disney Armed Forces Salute
- Using Disney Armed Forces Salute Tickets in 2021
- Using the Walt Disney World Theme Park Reservation System
Did you know that every year Westgate Resorts offers free vacation stays to military members?
For the last few years Westgate has been offering these free stays at their resorts on a first-come-first served basis to a set amount of people.
The notice is usually short that the offer is coming, usually just a day or two and you must take action as soon as they open the offer as the available slots (1500 this past year) are filled up within hours!
The offer usually comes out sometime in October or November. Here as a link to the 2014 offer so you can see the details.
What Are These Resorts Like
Many MDT readers have asked about the quality of these resorts or been worried that they’d be subjected to a sales pitch, as these are time-share resorts.
Let me assure you the resorts are fabulous and that there is no sales pitch whatsoever.
I recently returned from using my free stay and my review follows.
Westgate usually opens up just certain properties for this offer. This past year there were 5 resorts in the Orlando/Walt Disney World area (one near Universal, the rest near Disney), Branson MO, and Gatlinburg TN.
When you are accepted to receive the free offer you have to select your resort and dates (there are blackout dates) and you are not allowed to change these dates once booked (you can only cancel).
I selected the Westgate Town Center and Spa in Kissimmee, FL. This location is just a short 2.5 miles from Walt Disney World’s main gate!
This is a massive resort with multiple multi-story buildings housing studio apartments up to four-bedroom villas.
The check-in process was smooth after a wait for a number of people ahead of me in line. They asked for a credit card to use for any miscellaneous charges (there weren’t any), and I was off to my room.
The Amenities Offered by the resort are:
- Multiple Dining Locations
- Sundries Store
- Theme Park Transportation
- 14 outdoor heated pools and Hot Tubs
- Fitness Center
- Movie Theater
- Game Room
- Activities Programs
- Bicycle Rentals
- Outdoor Team Games
- BBQ Facilities
- Mini-Golf Course
My studio room was quite nice, with tile floors and Florida casual furniture. There was a small kitchenette with fridge, microwave, and coffee maker as well as an assortment of dishes, glasses, and silverware.
There was a nice screened in balcony, which in my case looked off property towards a nice lake view.
The bathroom was adequate, most of it was taken up by a spa-type bath tub. There was a single sink located in the main bath.
The bedroom was average sized with a queen bed, no complaints or kudos here, just a regular bedroom.
The room did share a hallway off of the exterior entrance with the room next door and it was at times noisy.
A Great Free Stay
All in all I enjoyed my 2 night stay, I could have extended the stay for 25% off of the regular rental rate (military can get 25% off year round!) if I’d wanted to.
While the drive wasn’t too far from WDW, it was a short 10-15 minute drive, I really prefer to stay on property!
Also note that staying off Disney property you will only be able to make your FastPass Plus reservations 30 days out!
My hat is off to Westgate resorts for offering this great deal up for those who serve!!!
Planning a Disney Trip? Want to get the best military discounts that are available? Feeling a little confused?
See Our Great Disney Discount and Planning Info:
- Disney Veteran & Military Discount Eligibility Guide
- The Military Family’s Walt Disney World Comprehensive Vacation Planning and Preparation Guide
- Military Disney Tips Disney Packing Checklist
- Disney Military Tickets – Your Start to Finish Guide
- Resorts/Hotel Overview Page
- Dining Overview Page
- Transportation Overview Page
- Technology Overview Page
- Shades of Green, WDW’s Military Only Resort
Military Disney Tips' Recommended Disney Travel Agent
Ears of Experience Disney Only Travel Agency. Military family owned and operated! They know all the ins and outs of Disney military discounts!