Help deciding between a moderate or deluxe resort

Hey all! We are planning a 6 day trip in January of 22 and trying to decide between one of the moderate or deluxe resorts. We just got back from an 8 night stay at Pop and were thinking of stepping up accommodations.

Any thoughts are appreciated! Going will be me, my wife, and our 4 year old…if that helps with input!

I would say depends on what you want to accomplish on your next trip? How many days in each park, do u take breaks with 4 year old, swimming, and park hopping?

Without any of that information and being that I stayed at Pop on our first trip I would suggest CBR or somewhere on the Boardwalk. I personally love the ease of the skyliner and the convenience of being close to two parks.

On our last trip we were out from park open to close just about each day. This trip coming up I think we would want to come back to the room and take breaks through the day and let our son enjoy the resort.

We are for sure going to take it a bit easier this go around and utilize the resort part of the Disney experience.

Thank you for taking the time to give some advice.

My kids are teens now, but we primarily stayed at moderates when they were younger with a couple of deluxe trips sprinkled in between.

FWIW, the two deluxe “counter service” options we experienced (Wilderness Lodge & Yacht Club) weren’t even close to being as good as Port Orleans Riverside (or PoP, a value but still far better for quick food options than WL or YC). While both were okay, they really weren’t great and with little ones we wanted more counter service variety…not needing the table service options.

Don’t get me wrong, I adored Wilderness Lodge (still my very favorite) but Roaring Forks was less than impressive and probably the only thing I didn’t love about our stay there.

For me it would come down to proximity and if you need more table service options, or more counter service.


We were there in May, staying at the Yacht Club for the first time. We loved the convenience of walking to EPCOT and HS.
In October 2019, we were at POFQ. If it was open, that is where we would stay. I am trying to avoid any resorts with multiple internal bus stops.


Honestly, you’ll be at Disney and happy at both. I really love the Epcot area and being in the middle of WDW and so close to two parks so I’d look at an Epcot resort or CBR for convenience but CSR was gorgeous and a wonderful resort with a wonderful pool area and I did not mind the bus system there (go to Bus Stop 2 to be picked up first and not risk a full bus). I’ve never stayed in Port Orleans though and it sounds wonderful. I think it comes down to money truly and honestly but the rooms in the moderate are not much smaller than the Deluxe’s near Epcot and may even be about the same size at least CSR to Boardwalk. So it really goes to down to money, convenience and theme. And if you want to Park Hop I’d choose something near Epcot as it’s the best one to park hop to right now with the latest hours.

For us, location is the main advantage of (some of) the Deluxes. The monorail resorts have easy access to MK and easy-ish to EPCOT once that line is running again. And Beach/Yacht/Boardwalk are so great for EPCOT and HS. While not walkable, AKL is close to AK and has the savannas.

If you want to come back mid-day, those Deluxes are a good bet to not lose a ton of time on transportation (assuming you don’t have a car and plan on driving to parks).

Moderates feel a lot more variable in what they benefit over values, so that’s more of a case by case basis. We liked CSR (pre-tower), but felt a bit more constrained by transportation time to/from the parks. CBR is notoriously spread-out and hard to get around, but now has skyliner (as do a couple values now). Lots of people love PO. It’s just a lot more mixed bag, I think.

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This is all great insight! I think we are up in the air between WL and YC with CSR in third right now. I think we would really benefit from being so close to the parks at YC since we plan on taking breaks during the day between park hops.

I love that there are more food offerings at these resorts the choice will not be an easy one.

Thank you everyone for your thoughts!

I’ve stayed in WL, BC and CSR and honestly CSR was my favorite of the three resort wise if I was just hanging at the resort but putting it all together… What I liked about best at each resort of the three not accounting for cost.
Best Pool/Slide: 1) BC, 2) CSR 3) WL
Best Grounds/Theme: 1)CSR, 2)WL, 3) BC
Most Convenient to parks: 1)BC, 2)WL, 3)CSR
Best access to dining options outside of the resort: 1)BC, 2)WL, 3) CSR
Best Bars: 1)CSR(rooftop and three bridges so 2 great bars wins), 2)WL, 3)BC
Best Room: 1)BC, 2)CSR, 3)WL (they’re are very dark)
Where would I look to stay again first based on my preferences: 1)BC, 2)CSR, 3)WL


I completely agree with Roaring Forks. It was below average at best. GP was great but not enough variety when we were staying for a week.


If you can afford it, I would go for YC. It’s close to 2 parks and you will have more meal options. I really liked WL but you are kind of on an island. There are frequent busses to FW which we did one day and DD7 did a pony ride. Those sorts of activities could be fun for your DS and I bet the boat to CR will be open by then!

I stayed at CSR during a convention before they added the tower and I was not impressed. I don’t think my DD7 would have enjoyed it much. So much walking!

When we booked WL - I got a great rate and it wasn’t much more than a pirate room at CBR - maybe $50-$60 more a night. That difference in price was completely worth it to upgrade from a moderate to a deluxe.

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Can not agree with you more here! When I go with my kids we like to stay moderate for this reason…quick service options are so limited at deluxe resorts. Has to be my biggest pet peeve. I love the variety of options at POR. My kids can always find something they want to eat and there is so much more room to personalize thier meals to thier liking. I will only stay at deluxe when its an adult only trip.


We agreed 100% with you on the quick service. We were not fans of RF at all. We only stayed one night at CBR at the end, but man was I happy to have the variety on the last night. CBR and POR both had much better quick service options.

The QS at YC is really limited and disappointing. The TS is good but QS is definitely lacking and the menu is very, very small. Even the grab and go area is tiny. I love the resort but something to be aware of.

What about a split stay? We are going in January of 22 with our kids too. We are staying 3 nights at Bay Lake followed by 6 nights at Beach Club. We can walk to every park except AK. Easy for breaks at the resort. You could do a deluxe, moderate or value for HS/EP with the Skyliner resorts and then move to WL or another MK resort for the second half.

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I do think it varies across deluxes. We did the Mara one time for lunch at AKL and thought it was great.

Yes, I have heard that about Mara, and Captain Cooks at the Poly is pretty good as well.


I’ve always heard Mara was the best QS.

Edit: I think I’m getting confused with just hearing AK has the best overall dining. Captain Cook’s is just as good or better in my personal opinion.

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This is a great way to explain it. When staying for a longer time I want more food choices and only value & moderates have food courts. Deluxe have limited QS and variety. We stayed a week in the cabins and used the kitchen once. I don’t want to cook and wash dishes on vacation


It depends on the kind of vacation but yes I agree at Disney when you’re too busy and tired when you get back to the room. But when we rent vrbo’s I don’t mind if we’re just out in the woods or the beach or something because all I’ve got planned is reading a book, going for a swim or a day hike. So I actually for once have the energy to cook. At home I don’t want to cook cuz I expend all my energy on raising two teens, working and planning future Disney trips. :wink: