Walt Disney World is probably our favorite place in the world. We've gone the last two years to celebrate our anniversary and have learned a few tricks along the way to make our vacations there so special. One of the ways that made our trip last year 100x better than the year before was thanks to staying at a WDW resort. Staying on property has so many perks to it, it's insane. We didn't know any of this when we planned our first trip, but man do I wish we did know! So I'm here today to share with you all the extras you get if you decide to stay at a WDW resort.
Disney Magical Express
If you book your trip through Disney and stay at a resort on property, you will have the option to take the free shuttle bus from the airport to Walt Disney World. Disney makes all of it so easy for you! They send you luggage tags in the mail, you put them on your bags prior to checking them in at your departing airport, and Disney gets your bags for you at Orlando International Airport. You just get off the plane and make your way to the Disney Magical Express area of the airport and get on the bus. You get to watch some Disney videos and sit back and relax after your flight. The bus brings you right to your hotel where they also drop your bags off for you in your room whenever it's ready! Then at the end of your trip, same thing. You check your bags at your resort and get on the bus at your designated time to go back to the airport. Disney checks your bags in for you at the airport and you pick them up when you arrive at your final destination.
You get your Magicbands for free if you stay at a Disney resort! The Magicbands act as your room key, ticket in to parks, your way to buy food from your dining plan, and your credit card to buy goodies all over WDW.
Book Your FastPasses 60 Days in Advance
When you stay on property, you can book your 3 daily Fastpasses 60 days in advanced compared to 30 days if you're not staying on property. This is a huge advantage if you are planning on going on rides like Flight of Passage at Animal Kingdom, Frozen Ever After at Epcot, and Peter Pan's Flight at Magic Kingdom. You probably won't get a Fastpass for these rides if you don't book them 60 days in advance and will end up waiting in a 2+ hour line to ride them!
The Disney dining plans are about the best thing ever. There are 3 different levels - quick service, dining, and deluxe dining. You have to stay at a resort to take advantage of having a dining plan and I promise it makes your trip 1000x better. All your food is paid for ahead of time (even snacks!) so all you have to do is scan your magicband wherever you're eating and depending on the kind of restaurant or food stand you're at, it gets deducted from your plan. But like I said, you have to stay at a resort to get this perk!
Free Mini Golf
Disney will send you a couple rounds of free mini golf for your whole group when you book a room at a resort! You can go to any of the golf ranges on property that has mini golf and play for free before 4pm! This is one of the great ways to take a small break from the parks.
Extra Magic Hours
Resort guests get to spend extra time in the parks! It's a different park every day and sometimes its prior to the park's official opening time or after its closing time. You can go on all the rides in the park and some food places will be open during the extra magic hours, too.
If you chose to drive to Disney or rent a car for your trip, you get to park for free at all the parks. You can come and go as you please and park hop and not have to pay a bunch of money to park at each park!
So as you can see, there are a lot of reasons why staying at a WDW resort is so worth it, but most of all each one is so unique and fun. There is a price point for every one and when you book a complete vacation package with Disney it truly is just that, a complete vacation. From the time you check your bags at the airport to the time you arrive home, Disney takes care of you.
What is your favorite Disney resort!? Mine is definitely the Polynesian...I love that I can get dole whips all day every day when we stay there!
I’m Diana; curator & author of Tiny Dapper Fox. Here you’ll find posts on motherhood, home life, travel, & fashion/beauty as well as City Guides for places all around the world. Make yourself cozy and let’s be friends!
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