Tips for Staying at a Disney Resort

As a travel brand, Disney practically sells itself. We don’t have to tell you about the magical experiences in store when you visit one of the enchanted theme parks or stay in one of Disney’s renowned accommodations.

Travel Agent Christy Z., one of our Disney vacation specialists, was kind enough to share some tips for travelers booking a Disney resort through the Global Connections Travel Agency. Having stayed at one herself, she is a great resource for any Disney vacation.

Stay on Property for the Most Value

You get more value out of the vacation if you stay on Disney’s property. If you include park passes and a meal plan to your resort package, you can get around a week’s worth of entertainment without leaving the Disney property. The only extra money you will need is for souvenirs. You can visit off-site attractions such as Universal Studios and SeaWorld, but that will add a lot more to your expenses.

There’s a Benefit to Booking Your Trip ASAP

In the time leading up to your trip, the price you pay can only go down from your initial payment.

“Once you make the deposit, if the price changes before you make your final payment, we can adjust your reservation,” Christy says. “If Disney goes up in ticket or dining plan prices, you’re already locked in at the price you paid.”

Because of this, Christy recommends booking everything you could possibly want from the get-go (park passes, meal plan) since you can adjust the specifics in the time leading up to your trip. The deposit is relatively affordable (around $200 dollars).

Disney is always Changing

Yet another reason to book ahead: Disney changes frequently and unpredictably.
“We get daily emails from them saying that they are adding or remodeling something,” Christy says. “It’s very hard to keep up with them.”

If the there’s a new attraction or an increase in ticket cost, it’ll happen in a flash, so stay up to date leading up to your trip. The Disney Parks Blog has an abundance of news and trip-planning ideas.

The Difference between Condos and Disney Resorts

Orlando is a popular destination for Global Discovery Vacations members because of the resorts we offer near Disney World, along with a few in California near Disneyland. The major difference between staying in a Global Discovery Vacations resort versus a Disney Resort is that you won’t have access to the Disney meal plan. Plus, it’s more cost-efficient to use your membership. But travelers who want the full Disney experience should book a Disney resort.

Don’t be Scared by the Price

“People are shocked by the sticker price,” Christy says about Disney resort packages. “But I have to say, it is worth the money. There’s no other experience like it. I took my five grandchildren and they were just in awe of the characters that are walking around, signing their autograph books. They love the rides. It’s almost hard to describe – it’s just so much different than any other trip you could take.”

The Meal Plan Will Fill You up

Each day, each person gets:

  • One snack
  • One quick-service meal (beverage, entrée, dessert)
  • One sit-down restaurant meal (beverage, soup/salad, entrée, dessert)

“It’s enough food that it can be hard to use all of it in one day,” Christy says.

Make Dinner Reservations Early

Many sit-down dining options take reservations up to 180 days in advance. As Christy found out, those spots can run out in minutes, so you’ll want to set a reminder. Cinderella’s Royal Table and the Be Our Guest Restaurant are among the most difficult to get reservations.

Note that you don’t need a meal plan to reserve a spot, but you will have to pay extra. Also, you don’t have to put in a reservation for every restaurant, but you might be waiting to get a table.

Online Planning

When you book a resort, you’ll want the ultimate Disney experience. You can personalize your trip with the online planning tool – – all before you even leave home! The FastPass+ will help you reserve access to the park’s must-see activities and events, such as live shows, parades and select attractions. You can even set up dinner reservations, customize your MagicBands and more!

Disney trips are unforgettable, as Christy recalled going with her grandchildren a couple years ago. It was raining during their stay, but that’s not even what sticks out. It was the kids’ shining faces meeting characters and getting autographs. It was the magic.

“Disney is like none other,” she says.

If you want a memorable Disney vacation, give our travel agency a call at 855-999-7654. You can also check out our resorts in Orlando and California to stay near these magical parks!

If you want a memorable Disney vacation, contact Christy for more info!