Special Info for these Crazy Times:
News for 2021:
- Planning and Executing Your Walt Disney World Vacation During These Trying Times
- 2021 Walt Disney World Armed Forces Salute Ticket Announcement
- Using Disney Armed Forces Salute Tickets in 2021
- Using the Walt Disney World Theme Park Reservation System
- Park Hopping Returns to Walt Disney World Starting in 2021
Everything is Different at WDW since it Reopened. See Our Trip Reports:
- Our Return to Walt Disney World (Aug/Sep 2020)
- Our Second Trip Back to Walt Disney World (Nov 2020)
- Our Third Trip Back to Walt Disney World (Jan 2021)
Walt Disney World’s Resorts are eligible for up to 30%-40% off via the Disney Armed Forces Salute Room Discount.
Staying On Walt Disney World Property
There are numerous Disney owned resorts in several different price/amenity categories. Staying at a Disney owned resort comes with many benefits, the most intangible of which is that you will feel like you are at Disney during your entire trip, not just while at the parks. Staying at a Disney owned resort is an immersive experience and so much more convenient.
Check out this list of amenities that you’ll receive when you stay in a Disney Resort:
- Free Disney provided roundtrip transportation to your resort from the Orlando International Airport (Disney’s Magical Express).
- Free transportation from your resort to all WDW destinations via Disney’s fleet of buses, boats, monorails, and gondolas.
- Free theme park parking, should you decide to drive your car.
- Participation in Extra Magic Hours – early entry and late stays at designated parks on designated days. The general public is not allowed in during Extra Magic Hours.
- Property wide charging of your Disney purchases (Merchandise, Dining, etc.) to your room.
- Disney Merchandise delivery to your resort (from the theme parks or Disney Springs)
- Guaranteed theme park entry on high attendance days when the parks close due to nearing capacity
- Booking FastPass Plus reservations 60 days prior to check in
- The ability to add the various Disney Dining Plans to your vacation
- The ability to book Advance Dining Reservations for your entire trip (up to 10 days) at the 180-day mark.
Please note that while located on Walt Disney World property, Shades of Green is not a Disney Owned Resort!
Walt Disney World breaks their resorts down into several categories. From cheapest to most expensive these are:
There are five different Value Resorts on Walt Disney World Property. These are the lowest priced of Disney’s resorts and understandably have the lowest level of amenities.
- Disney’s All-Star Movies Resort
- Disney’s All-Star Music Resort
- Disney’s All-Star Sports Resort
- Disney’s Pop Century Resort
- Disney’s Art of Animation Resort
The Value Resorts are each decorated in a big way based on the theme they represent, with large exterior icons decorating the buildings, themed pools, and bright color schemes throughout.
The Value rooms have a small price (by Disney standards) and are small in size too. Standard size rooms offer 2 double beds, which sleep four (a crib may be requested for children under 3), a small table and two chairs, dresser, TV, and small fridge. The bathroom proper is separated from the single sink vanity area. Set a few suitcases out and it gets “very cozy” in these rooms.
Family Suites are available at the All-Star Music and Art of Animation for a higher rate. These suites offer twice the room and sleep six, plus a crib.
Being entry level resorts, they have entry level amenities such as: Quick Service food courts, limited pizza delivery, an arcade, playground, heated pools, pool bar, scheduled (hourly) luggage service, in room safe, iron and board, and coffee makers (only in suites). These resorts all have exterior hallway room entry doors.
These resorts are very large, from 1600 to about 3000 rooms each. Due to the lower price younger families, children’s athletic teams participating in competitions at Disney’s ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex, and South American vacationers, mostly frequent them. They can at times be hectic and noisy in general, especially the food courts in the morning!
There are five different Moderate Resorts on Walt Disney World Property. These resorts come in at a price point between the Values and the Deluxes.
- Disney’s Caribbean Beach Resort
- Disney’s Coronado Springs Resort
- Disney’s Port Orleans Resort – Riverside
- Disney’s Port Orleans Resort – French Quarter
- The Cabins at Disney’s Fort Wilderness Resort
The Moderate Resorts are each decorated in various facets of an overall resort theme. For example, the Port Orleans Riverside Resort has two different sections, Magnolia Bend and Alligator Bayou. Each is themed differently both inside and out. Magnolia Bend has large three story buildings, which look like New Orleans style mansions with elegant interiors, while Alligator Bayou has a more rustic feel with smaller tin roofed, wood sided, two story buildings with simulated roughhewn interiors.
The Moderates fill the needed middle of the road in both price and amenities between the Value and Deluxe resorts. Standard size rooms (Except Pirate Rooms at the Caribbean Beach Resort) offer two queen beds that sleep four (a crib may be requested for children under three). Some rooms in Port Orleans Riverside and the Caribbean Beach sleep five with a fold down single Murphy bed. The Moderates all have exterior room entry doors. The Wilderness Cabins sleep six with one double, one bunk, and one double Murphy bed.
The Pirate Rooms at the Caribbean Beach Resort have double (full) sized beds.
Disney Moderate rooms are somewhat larger that the Value rooms (on average 315 square feet compared to 260). They offer a small table and two chairs, dresser, TV, and small fridge. The bathroom proper is separated from the double sink vanity area, while the vanity area can be separated from the room with a curtain or door. Even with your suitcases out you’ll still have room to move around.
These are mid-level resorts and as you expect have mid-level amenities such as: Table Service dining (except French Quarter), Quick Service food court, pizza delivery, room service at Coronado, an arcade, playground, heated pools, hot tub, a gym at Coronado, Indoor and pool bars, luggage service, in room safe, iron and board, and coffee makers.
These resorts except for French Quarter are very large and spread out, they have from 1000 to over 2100 rooms each. The Moderates all have a lake or river where you can rent various watercraft and even fish. The food courts, which are the primary breakfast dining locations, can be hectic in the morning!
All the Moderates except French Quarter have numerous Disney Transportation bus stops located through the resort so you won’t have to walk too far. French Quarter, which is the smallest moderate, has one bus stop near the lobby.
There are eight different Deluxe Resorts on Walt Disney World Property.
The Deluxe Resorts are the premier hotels of Walt Disney World. They are decorated exquisitely based upon their overall resort theme.
- Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge and Villas
- Disney’s Contemporary Resort
- Disney’s Beach Club Resort
- Disney’s BoardWalk Inn
- Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort and Spa
- Disney’s Polynesian Village Resort
- Disney’s Wilderness Lodge
- Disney’s Yacht Club Resort
- Walt Disney World Swan and Dolphin
- Shades of Green
These hotels are for those who really want to splurge on their accommodations. They are high in both price and in services.
Standard size rooms offer 2 queen beds and in some a sofa bed, which will sleep four to five (a crib may be requested for children under 3). The Deluxe Resorts all have room entry doors from an interior hallway.
Disney Deluxe rooms are larger that the Moderate rooms and fall into 3 size groupings: 400 square feet plus (Contemporary, Polynesian, Grand Floridian), 370-380 square feet (BoardWalk, Beach Club, Yacht Club), and 344 square feet (Wilderness and Animal Kingdom Lodges). Prices in this category fall in a larger range than in the others due to the different room sizes and special amenities offered.
The Wilderness and Animal Kingdom Lodges are sometimes referred to as Moderate Plus or Deluxe Minus, due to their room size and price.
Deluxe Resorts offer a table and two chairs or a desk and chair, dresser, TV, and small fridge. The bathroom proper is separated from the double sink vanity area.
These resorts are at the top of the Disney World lineup! You’ll find all the amenities that you would expect at a first class resort, such as: Fine Dining, Table Service dining, Quick Service food court, room service, an arcade, playground, the best heated pools with slides, hot tub, a full service Spa at most, a gym, indoor and pool bars, luggage service, valet parking, balconies or porches, in room safe, iron and board, and coffee maker.
The Deluxe Resorts are all near at least one of the theme parks, which gives you easy access to that park.
All the Deluxe Resorts have a single Disney Transportation bus stop located near the lobby.
Disney Vacation Club Resorts
The Disney Vacation Club is Disney’s take on timeshares. Members buy into a property and use points for stays at DVC properties worldwide.
DVC resorts offer Deluxe accommodations in studio, one, two, and three bedroom suites. These suites can also be rented through the regular Walt Disney World reservation process and are eligible for the Disney Armed Forces Salute 40% off room discount, though the number available is very limited.
There are currently nine DVC resorts at Walt Disney World that are co-located with a Deluxe Resort and share facilities with that resort.
The Colocated Resorts are:
- Bay Lake Tower at Disney’s Contemporary Resort
- Boulder Ridge Villas at Disney’s Wilderness Lodge
- Cooper Creek Villas at Disney’s Wilderness Lodge
- Disney’s Animal Kingdom Villas – Jambo House
- Disney’s Animal Kingdom Villas – Kidani Village
- Disney’s Beach Club Villas
- Disney’s BoardWalk Villas
- Disney’s Polynesian Villas and Bungalows
- The Villas at Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort & Spa
And there are three standalone resorts that are not paired with a Disney World Deluxe Resort.
The Stand Alone Resorts are:
MDT Tip: Though the Disney Vacation Club Resorts are typically the most expensive, you can actually get them for drastically lower prices on the resale/rental market. Check out this Disney Vacation Club page on the MDT recommended website SellMyTimeshareNow.com. The Disney Vacation Club timeshare suites priced on this site are among the lowest on the web.
Also See these Related Resort Posts:
- How Disney Armed Forces Salute Room Discounts Work
- 2021 Disney Armed Forces Salute Room Package vs Room Only Reservation
- Walt Disney World Resort Guest Benefits
- Walt Disney World Resort Theming
- Walt Disney World and Disneyland Resort Categories and Room Types
- Walt Disney World Room View Types – Do They Matter at Value and Moderate Resorts?
- Military Disney Tips Tested and Approved Resorts
- Split Stays at Walt Disney World Resorts and Shades of Green
- Top Ten Things You Should Know About The Disney Armed Forces Salute Room Discounts
- Top 8 Reasons to Use An Authorized Disney Vacation Planner
Let Military Disney Tips’ Recommended Travel Agent assist you with your Disney Resort reservation at no additional cost.
Note: Links to SellMyTimeshare.com are affiliate links.
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Read about the Temporary Changes to Disney World during their Post-Lockdown Re-OpeningSee 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
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