An Inside Look at all things 3D Travel

From the viewpoint of owner, Carol-Beth Scott

Choosing Your Disney Resort!

Disney Resort

Choosing the Perfect Resort for YOUR Family in 3....2.....

​Have you fallen in love with a Disney Resort, yet?  If you're one of the lucky members of a very special Disney Fan club, you've found the perfect spot to visit each year.  If you're like most frequent visitors to Walt Disney World, you also have your "Dream" Disney resort, which you hope to stay in one day. Chances are though, you're just a person or family taking a special trip without a hundred hours to plan and want to choose the resort that will make as much magic as possible for your family PLUS add value to your trip.  This post is written for you - the non Disney expert - just looking to make a good plan.


Value, Moderate, Deluxe - WHAT?

​This is it!  It's finally time!  You're planning your magical trip to Walt Disney World, and you tremble with excitement as you place that long awaited call or visit the Disney website and start pricing vacations.  Suddenly, you're inundated with pictures of more options than you thought possible - some look like GIANT cartoons, others look like picturesque walks in another era and still more have theming best described as over-the-top. You could spend hours just looking at pictures and videos of each resort.  As you explore, you see categories, like Value, Moderate & Deluxe, and oh wait?  What's a Disney Deluxe Villa?  After dreaming and chatting with the family, you make a decision. The pictures and video of this one looks perfect!  Let's do it! The mouse clicks and you wait....only to find out that resort won't hold your family OR isn't available for the time you were wishing OR is a heckuva lot more than you'd ever intended to spend.  Now, you're completely overwhelmed and don't know what to do!

What happens next?  In many cases, that's when you call US!  And who could blame you?  And truly, you do want a member of our team making the magic happen while you sleep, but we can also help you with some preliminary resort decisions in the meantime. Maybe your agent even sent you here?  Let's chat resorts together and get you excited again!


Value Resorts

​First things first - ALL Disney resorts are manned by Walt Disney World employees, which are called Cast Members, because when you're at Disney you are standing on the biggest stage in the world & they are there to make your stay magical.  The towels and linens are laundered in the same facilities & every cast member is trained in the same world class level of service. What is the difference in resorts? As you will quickly find out, there is a BIG difference in price, but what else?  

Value Resorts are whimsical, Disney Animation & Theme immersion.  The rooms are adequate in size, with either 2 twins, 2 queens (this is NEW!), 1 queen or family suites.  Suites can hold up to 6 people & all rooms have space for you to add a child/infant 2 or under.  There are many reasons to choose a value resort, besides price.  

  1. ​The theming is super fun!  From pop culture references to pixar, sports to music, everything is BIG.  The photo ops are spectacular.
  2. The quick service dining options are unsurpassed elsewhere on property.  If you're doing the quick service dining plan or will just make your resort a regular quick stop & want something besides the same few entrees over & over, this is the place to be!
  3. It's LOUD.  That may be a drawback for some, but if you're there with your own rowdy band of folks, being loud is actually a relief.  No "shhhh" to those kiddos.  They fit right in!
  4. The bus service is often straight there & straight back - ask your 3D Agent which value resorts fit that bill. Bus routes can change & if this is a priority to you, like it is to us, you'll want to be well advised on the latest ones!
  5. If you have allergies - peanuts, celiac, whatever....the food court will have more of your allergen friendly products stocked than anywhere else on property.  My celiac kids literally dream of these places.  (Allergies are accommodated everywhere - they just have more options.)
  6. Value suites offer something nowhere else on property - a lockaway bedroom for the parents, dining, lounging areas and kitchenette. Plus, they're just adorable and at a lower price.

Moderate Resorts

There is one word I use most consistently when describing moderate resorts.  That word is SPRAWLING.  This is code for "good grief, that's a lot of walking!"  

But here's the deal - these resorts are LOVED.  Why? They're set apart on Disney property, with winding paths and quieter theming.  Often the price for a family to stay at a moderate is the same or even better for a family, depending on the special offer we're able to grab for them.  These resorts all have waterslides, a couple of them even have a waterlaunch to Disney Springs, which is a beautiful and relaxing way to visit, and they have full service dining.  But, I'm getting ahead of myself. Let's break it down into a list. 

  1. ​The theming is more adult.  It's quiet and calm and lovely.  Here, you can experience the Florida foliage, a hammock on the beach, a walk around the lake, pyramids, new orleans......choose your theme!
  2. Not only will you find a quick service location that's often on the larger side, you may find the yummiest options found nowhere else.  Beignets, anyone?  
  3. You're also likely to find a table service location. Sometimes you just want to get waited on.  Like I say at the end of a long day of walking, "I just want someone to bring me tea!"
  4. There is a waterslide!  This can be a big deal for the kids, am I right?
  5. The rooms are a wee bit bigger, and you're often able to get queen size beds everywhere (but ask us about the pirate beds before you book!)

Deluxe Resorts

Here we go - the resorts mere mortals dream about.  And you're in luck, I've been doing this for so long (selling Walt Disney World) that I've stayed in all but one while traveling as part of a conference, event or group.  Deluxe resorts at Walt Disney World are where you can find themes nowhere else on earth & certainly nowhere else is such a variety of resorts found. You can overlook a savannah in the mornings, arrive on a futuristic monorail, buy taffy on the boardwalk and so much more!

But what do you get for the big bucks at Disney?  And what do you not get?  Both are important questions to answer, when you're looking at spending that much money.  Most importantly, you're trying to make a wonderful trip for your family. Check out this list to compare!

  1. ​Deluxe resorts have the largest rooms on property. The rooms are considerably larger than values or moderates - enough where you can feel it as you walk in, around your room and share the bathroom.  The bathroom is larger and typically a better design for sharing when getting ready in the morning.  
  2. The theming is eclectic, with something for everyone.  If you enjoy dark woods, tiki torches and an island feel, you'll choose the Polynesian.  Animals and African food are found in one of the most beautiful resorts anywhere - Animal Kingdom Lodge.  Convenience, cleanliness and unsurpassed views of the Magic Kingdom are at the Contemporary.  You know what?  I could go on & on!  Explore what looks beautiful, keeping in mind that different rooms have different capacities and room upgrades available, then ask your 3D Agent for pricing.  
  3. Multiple table service locations are available.  We often commute from other resorts to dine at Deluxe Resorts restaurants. So much yumminess!  So little time!  (Reservations are NOT guaranteed for resort guests.  You need a confirmation number, just like everyone else).
  4. Multiple pools, sometimes a hot tub, always a slide, often a kids play area.  The Beach club has sand beaches, slides and a lazy river, all located out the back door of Epcot.  It's gorgeous!

+ Disney Deluxe Villas are available for various family sizes.  Ask your agent for the best options for your family, if you're interested in more space, a kitchen and living room, or need to accommodate a larger family under the same "roof."


At the end of the day, you'll need pricing to compare how much each resort will cost, especially since we compare offers and seasons, capacity and availability.   Hopefully this will help you bring some opinions to the table when you start the chat. There truly IS a place for every person, every family, every couple at Walt Disney World Resort.  What's important to you?  We have a resort for that!

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