Looking at staying at a Disney springs hotel for the first time. We normally stay at a true Disney property. Looking at Hilton Lake Buena Vista or Hilton Buena Vista Palace. How efficient is their bus system? Any positive or negative experience with the Disney springs transportation system? Any tips? Any insight would be super helpful. Thanks!!
Each of the Disney Springs area resorts and hotels will have their own individual transportation systems. There is not one overriding system that serves them all.
The Disney Springs bus stop serves Disney Springs, the shopping and dining center. There is no direct service to any of the theme parks from that location; it serves only the WDW resort hotels. That bus service is limited to the hours at which DS operates.
If you know which hotel you’re considering others here might be able to speak to their experiences.
I haven’t stayed there in a couple years now, but there were 2 routes (A & B) and each route went to multiple DS hotels before heading to either MK and HS or AK and EP. I stayed at the Best Western and when I got on the bus there were already people on from an earlier hotel stop and then we stopped at the Wyndham and Hilton Palace before heading to MK first (at the TTC) and then to HS. The next day it was the same hotels and then AK first before going to Epcot. Buses did not run early enough for rope drop and I Ubered back at night most of the time.
All to say it is not in any way efficient at all, but it’s free and will eventually get you to your destination.
Interesting to note that a few of them do in fact share.
Thanks!! Edited post to add looking at Hilton lane Buena vista or Hilton Buena vista palace.
Yeah I was not prepared for that either. I don’t think all ‘good neighbor’ hotels share, but the DS ones seemed to all share with at least a few others in the area.
Do all Disney Spring hotels receive the perks of FP reservations at 60 days and access to extra magic hours when they are available?
No one really knows for sure. That used to be the case, but 2020 was the last official year for that program, and they haven’t said what will be the case going forward.
Many folks think that FPP is giving way to a paid fast pass a la Shanghai Disney and/or Maxpass at Disneyland, in which case it wouldn’t likely be a hotel perk any longer. And back at D23, they announced that Disney hotel resort guests (unclear whether it would include DS hotels or not) would be able to enter ANY park 30 minutes early at some point in 2021, but they haven’t followed up on details for that either.
Very in flux right now. We’re at the Hilton Lake Buena Vista in September.
So I can definitely confirm that there are not shuttle buses right now at the Wyndham. They told me there are no plans to bring them back at least in the next couple months. I will report back on what I do for transportation. I have a few different scenarios that I’m going to try - varying combinations of Uber, buses to Disney springs, and buses to Saratoga springs.
I have stayed at the Holiday Inn multiple times.
As mentioned (in the past), the hotels share a common bus either route A or B. If you are not in a huge rush, using those buses is more than adequate to get you to where you need to go. The buses were typically on time, but it stopped at other hotels along the way.
If you are ever worried about getting somewhere at a specific time, you could catch a lyft/uber. That worked out well for me on multiple occasions.
Returning to the hotel via the buses was pretty easy. They have the schedule all printed out for you at hotel check-in. I recall they were not the “prime” bus spots at some drop off points, but that did not matter at the end of the night.
On multiple occasions we would typically end our night by heading to Disney Springs and just stroll back to our hotel from there.
There is also the option of walking over to SSR and grabbing a bus from there in the morning.
Ultimately it was not that much of an inconvenience staying at a Disney Good Neighbour hotel. We ended up saving hundreds of dollars and still received all the perks.
But as mentioned, we do not know what the future holds at this point. It may be a good time to start calling the front desk of the hotel you are choosing and see if they have any new information about the transportation. I would not use the 1-800 number.
Thanks for that input. Have y’all stayed at that Hilton lake Buena vista before? If so I assume you liked it
I haven’t, but I used to work for Hilton corporate and so had enough Hilton Honors points leftover to make my stay free.
Generally speaking, the “reputation” around Hilton was that the Lake Buena Vista was a lot more conference attendees (& their families), whereas the Buena Vista Palace was more leisure travel/family oriented in general. Palace definitely has a nicer/newer pool, but Lake Buena Vista has the skybridge over to DS. Hilton also has the Orlando Bonnet Creek & Waldorf Astoria properties that are “official” Disney partner hotels, but neither had re-opened yet when I was booking (though I believe they may be open now).
Anyone have any experience with Doubletree Suite and those shuttles? We have a family of 5 and are staying there due to the room size.
You mentioned you were staying at Hilton Lake Buena Vista in September. How did it go? As in, did you find the rooms comfy/clean? Did they share bus service with nearby hotels? How often did the buses come? I’m asking because we are planning our first non-Disney hotel stay there.
Hey. We actually decided not to stay there but I hope the buses run just as smooth as normal buses. I’m sure y’all will have a great stay
Hiya - yes, we stayed there in September. You can see my observations at the time in my trip report, and a photo of their bus schedule at that time, starting about here:
We found it comfy & clean, but housekeeping is currently by request only. We never ended up using the buses, because the only one that would’ve gotten there in time to rope drop was the AK bus, and that happened to be the day we were running late; we ended up using Lyfts instead, which was fine.
It was a standalone bus just for this hotel, though, not shared. The Hilton Lake Buena Vista alone has 800 rooms, apparently, so I can’t imagine they’d ever need to share with any other hotels.
Considering that I booked it using points, resort fees are waived when you used points, and I got added benefits and F&B credits for being a HIlton diamond member, I considered it an absolutely amazing deal. But I likely would have been happy with it had I booked normally, up to about $200/night. After that price point, I think you’d likely be happier staying at a WDW value resort.
Location was great, staff was friendly.
Thank you for sharing your thoughts!