We are planning on driving in from NC and leaving Thursday night after work (around 6 pm). We originally got a reservation in Palm Coast and were going to stop there around midnight and finish the two hour drive to Disney in the morning. However, I was told that Disney will often allow early check-in, when available. So, we were thinking that maybe we could get a hotel right outside Disney and get an extra day there if we could check-in somewhat early. Does early check-in usually occur in the summer? We are going in June and I'd hate to have to sit there for hours waiting on check-in, after driving all night.
You can check in early, I've seen around 6am. Whether your room would be ready then though is another matter. If it isn't you can leave your bags and head to the park, even for emh, if you wanted to.
Your room might not be ready until 3pm.
I guess I should have clarified that. Sorry. I actually meant getting into the room. Since w'ere driving, I don't mind leaving our stuff in the car (assuming we CAN park there before the room is ready), but I didn't know if they often gave you the room earlier than 3pm.
We drive as well and have stayed offsite the night before and checked in anywhere from 9 am to 12 and never had a room ready at that time (POR and CBR). You can leave stuff in car or drop the majority of your stuff at bell services and they will deliver when you get into your room (in my book, a tip trumps unloading after a park day). We usually get a snack at the food court and our mugs, explore the resort a bit, and then head into the parks for a late start day.
So, do you recall what time the room actually was ready?
We've done this our last 3 trips but the times the room was ready varied. Last time we got the room ready message when we were on the bus from the resort to the park (so maybe 1100/1130). Two trips ago, we checked in in person probably between 11 and 12 noon and room was not ready, went to park, never got a message, left park after dinner, went back to resort and room still hadn't been assigned. Finally got room around 7 pm. Not how we wanted to spend time after a long day! But I've seen some people post that they did online check-in and received room ready texts before they boarded their am flight from home. So I guess you just never know.
Wow! 7pm? Yeah, that would stink. I had that happen to me at the beach once and it was a NIGHTMARE. Especially with nowhere to go. I guess we will need to just bring swimsuits...that way we can get in the pool if it's not ready. HAHA!
The last time we went we checked in at 10:30 AM and our room wasn't ready until just about 3 pm.
I have been able to check in as early as 9:00am and I have had to wait until 5:30. I would pick that having your room ready is your priority if you want it early.
When we were there in December, we arrived very early (1:20am) and were told that the earliest we could check in was at 7:00am (this was Pop Century) This was the Cast member Levi at the check in desk.
We also drove all night on our last trip. I called the day before to let them know what time I will be arriving. I was told they can't guarantee the room would be ready. We got to Disney about 6 AM. Our room was ready before 7. It was great to rest a little before we went to Disney Springs.
The last two trips we arrived around 7:30am & 8am at POR and went to the desk and our room was ready both times. I had done online check-in both times and put down what time we would be arriving and we would like an early check-in and had no problem. I wasn't very specific about what room we wanted either time, just generic preferences.