Is it more than just a bed for you?

My WDW policy is different from my standard policy. In general, I like nice hotel rooms in nice hotels with nice views. And I’ll pay the premium for them. I’ll only consider four and five star hotels.

At WDW I just want a clean, modern-looking room. Before the refurbs, I don’t think I could have stayed at the All-Stars or Pop. They were hideous. After the refurb, I think they’re great and they tick my limited number of boxes.

I did once stay at CSR for a week. It’s a stunning resort. One of my favourites. The rooms are bigger than the ones at ASMo and Pop. But they are essentially the same. And I’m usually travelling solo. I didn’t use any of the resort amenities. So it seemed that I had wasted the premium.

Of course, it helps that the deluxes (and usually the moderates) are so wildly expensive that I just can’t afford to stay at the anyway. I’m not even tempted to upgrade.

This is true at DLP, too. For my trip this June I’m staying at their cheapest on-site hotel. Back in 2020 I stayed at the second cheapest. The rooms are dated and I would far rather stay at the recently refurbished Marvel-themed hotel. But it’s just so much more expensive. I can’t justify it.

My policy with flights is that if I’m flying transatlantic I will not fly economy (i.e. coach). It’s too grim. I tried a slightly upgraded version (“Economy Delight”) of it in February last year as an a experiment. Nope. Not for me. I used to book business class (“Upper Class”) before COVID: I was savvy about pricing and usually paid about double the Economy fare. But since COVID it’s now at least four times the Economy fare. So I started flying Premium Economy, which is about a third more than regular, but much more than a third better.

For shorter flights (e.g. to France) I aim to book the extra legroom seats in Economy. Business is often three or four times as much. For a flight just over an hour, that’s not justifiable.

For trains in the UK, I always book first class.


I don’t go enough for the room to matter a lot. At WDW is at WDW. If everyone sleeps comfortably, it’s a win. I went from YC in 21 to ASMu in 22 and didn’t feel downgraded. Of course location and convenience is huge, but it comes at a price. Wherever the cost/benefit analysis takes me and gives me the most for the least, I’m ok with.

Of course DVC skews this in a good direction, but it involves a commitment and chunk of money I’m not comfortable with, at least yet.

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I always stay on site for the benefits and the Disney magic. Other than that my standards vary for traveling party:

When traveling solo:

  • Clean and quality furnishing (cheap is ok)
  • Secure feeling
  • Comfortable bed

I can Uber if needed so transport is not a factor. I recently stayed at Pop and loved the room. I’m trying ASMo next week and expect to enjoy it.

When traveling with the fam, add the following:

  • Space for me and DW, four kids plus any guests; closed off bedroom for us preferred
  • Pool (preferably with slide and hot tub)
  • Proximity and transport (the need for car seats makes Uber and rental car unworkable)
  • Theming of the resort

As a result of these extra criteria, my family generally stays Deluxe / DVC. I think my kids would love Pop/AoA/All-Stars and I think I may try an ASMu family suite next year for a few nights. But the lack of slide and hot tub and walking / premium transport is a definite downside.


I think a suite at AoA might be fun for your family too! Especially if you have any Cars fans. The theming in that area is fantastic.


To be honest it’s like 80% about atmosphere and being in the bubble. If thinking practically and sensibly (and comparing to hotels anywhere else, maybe excluding metropol cities), wdw deluxe resorts are not worth anywhere near their sky high prices. That said, when I go there max once a year for 3-4 nights (as of now, 5 times in my entire adulthood), I’m willing to go “all out” to be in the full WDW atmosphere of for example the Polynesian. And by atmosphere I mean the surroundings, the quality of the theming, services and cast members, views / being able to see fireworks…

The rest is location, comfort, cleanliness and newness etc. with location being one of the most important factors, though my opinion on this has changed a bit too. Ultimately I usually got to each park just once, so if it takes a bit more effort, it’s not really a big deal - this is something I’d consider sacrificing the future. But on the other hand I don’t want to sacrifice any time, so in that sense location still is very important.

That’s nuts!!
How many people travelling in pairs end up with one throwing the other off a balcony??
Surely no more or less than a suicide.

Oh and…

Rent please!! 1500 Monopoly pounds!!!


For me, it’s all about location. We (two adults) stay in the Epcot area and can walk or take a quick boat to two parks. I also like being able to pop back to the room quickly for a nap, to change clothes for the evening, etc. In the anytime-parking-hopping days, we were often in Epcot; pop over to a bakery for breakfast then take a monorail to MK; do AK during the day and pop over to Epcot food booths to nosh dinner; pop over to Epcot for a concert; etc.


Being DVC makes this question a whole other animal, but for me one of the biggest factors in any room choice for any trip anywhere is location.

A very close second (sometimes first) is room/bed configuration, but that preference changes based on who is on the trip… like, often on cruises we pick a ship with a cabin layout that we prefer first and then we choose the itinerary, but if we’re just going to be 2 to a cabin (so nobody is on the bunk or sofabed anyway) that’s not as big a deal so we can prioritize other stuff. When choosing a rental house if it’s a large group then usually the one with the best bed setup (least sharing of beds/baths) and more refrigerators will win out over a slightly better location or price, but if it’s just a few of us then location is king.

DVC resort choice is much the same… if someone is going to have to sleep on the sofabed then I’ll look for one of the options that has a murphy rather than a pull-out, but if that’s not a thing then location is making the choice (assuming there is a choice… unless you’re booking 5+ months in advance many times you get what you get and you don’t throw a fit).


When we went last May, knowing it’d be a struggle to get people going every morning and we’d be wiped at the end of every day, the primary concern was proximity to the parks.
Avoid the busses when possible.
And I drive enough at home, so nix to renting a car.

Having said that, with DD7 wanting Stormalong Bay and my plan / sacred vow to rent a cabana, BC checked off a few boxes besides being pleasantly close to EPCOT and HS.

And really, the animals hanging around our balcony at AKL made just staying there an attraction.

And of course, I’d wanted to stay at Poly since I saw it from the monorail as a kid. Standing on that balcony watching the sun come up was Christmas every gosh darn morning.

So, in the end, maybe we’re easy to please, but we were very happy with our accommodations and enjoyed feeling like the parks were always right on our doorstep.


GDT is the secret deluxe resort. I think CSR in general is really underrated, and I kind of hope it stays that way.

Disney probably doesn’t get enough credit for what they’ve done with the value room refurbs. They’re nicely done (although I wouldn’t mind a few more fun theming touches in some of them), and the Murphy bed/table combos give people a lot of flexibility.


(1) location, most importantly walking distance to a park(s)
(2) pool for the kids
(3) food options


The one time I stayed on property it was just about a bed, so DD18 and I stayed at AsMo and it was very comfortable. I likely being able to walk easily to my car and the gift shop was so cool.

When I’m with my whole travel party (8-10 people) I want it to be comfortable. That means accommodations equal to or nice than what we would have at home. Multiple bedrooms and a living room so when I get up earlier than the kids I don’t have to tip toe around with a flashlight.
I can not afford those treetop places (and they don’t actually look that comfy - someone would still have to sleep on a fold out in the living room), so that means staying off property in well-appointed houses.

I would not mind staying somewhere fancier on property with just one other person (DH, a kid, a friend) but I wouldn’t be willing to pay $$$ for it.


When we first started going to WDW 9 years ago we only chose based on price which was value resorts. In 2019 we rented DVC to try deluxe at a price we could afford and haven’t gone back to value or moderate. Now, location is number one on our priority and type of resort. We’ve stayed at several resorts and have realized we prefer a resort that is all in one building instead of spread out in smaller buildings. And our location priority can change depending on our type of trip. We also take mid day breaks so we prefer to be closer to parks for easier access. YC/BC are a favorite but we also love AKL. Even though it’s only close to AK we enjoy that park and the resort is so beautiful and relaxing. Oh and I love a balcony!

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Samesies, except the pool is for ME, too. And as I got older and started to travel more, I started to notice the importance of a nice ass bed. My s.o. travels for work FAR more than I do, and when she noticed that Swan / Dolphin were Westins of some sort, her first words were, "Do they have the “Heavenly Beds?” Those beds are sooooooo freekin nice to recharge after miles of walking in the parks, and jumping around in the pools.

We are 100% Swolphin people. Pools, Beds, Location, Food. We are all in. So glad we took a chance on them even though I assumed there had to be a “catch” since it wasn’t Disney owned / managed. For the price compared to the other resorts, it’s easily worth it to us, but obviously there are short-comings that other folks don’t care for. The MK bus really bugs me, but, I can work around that.

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This may be a weird take since I rarely see it discussed here but I feel like the Four Seasons is a bit underrated when compared to the deluxe resorts.

The price (for non-suite rooms) is usually only slightly higher than club level at a deluxe and you get actual luxury hotel amenities/service.

To put it another way, it is a bit offensive what you DON’T get for the price at the deluxes. At FS you can have a great breakfast served in your room at 6am, hop the bus to the #1 bus space at any park and return to a sparkling clean/fully turndown serviced room. They were actually cleaning our room right when they reopened while the deluxes hid behind Covid to maaaybe take out your trash and give you some towels if you were lucky for how long?
The restaurants and pools are also gorgeous.

That said, we still usually stay in deluxes for the immersion/illusion of convenience (my preference is always to walk to parks with monorail as a second choice but I would bet the FS bus is actually faster). It also feels like the FS could be a nice hotel anywhere where the deluxes are pretty uniquely and iconically wdw.


Well put. But, also, well done, by Disney. Their branding and limits on locations keeps those deluxes full. If the Four Seasons was walking distance, then I’d eyeball it for sure. Since we are morning people, not relying on the bus to get to 2 parks is a real benefit to us. If we stay at an Epcot Area resort, rope drop at EP and DHS are a breeze, and getting back to the pool for a midday break is only a few minutes, as is hopping to EP or DHS in the afternoon from the resort. It just so happens that those 2 are our favorite parks. When the Disney bus system works well, it’s nice, but when it sucks, it REAAALLLLY sucks. (I’m an impatient bastard, admittedly so.)


We first decided to stay on property for free dining, so that knocked out the values, and a quick look at the deluxe prices knocked those out too - they are obscene!

So it had to be a moderate and I was already leaning to FQ because it’s smaller. I don’t like huge resorts. I liked that it only had one bus stop. And when I looked at photos, it looked really nice. The pool looked fun, the QS looked decent, it’s centrally located and I liked the idea of the boat to DS. In person I just felt like I’d come home.

I’ve visited lots of the resorts now and never found one I’d like to stay at more.


Because that wasn’t a good value or because values weren’t part of the offer?

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You had to stay mod to get QS dining and deluxe to get TS.


I stayed in POFQ once and loved it! Very quaint, beautiful, comfortable resort with fun decor, a great pool, beignets, and New Orleans-style charm. The ferry access to DS was also a plus. I probably won’t stay there again because there are so many other options to try, plus now that I’m DVC it makes more sense to stay in villas, but I would highly recommend it to anyone who hasn’t tried it.