We won't be staying onsite because we get such a fabulous deal through hilton friends and family. 50% off. And it just doesn't fit into our budget. But, with that being said, I know the perks you get from staying onsite really make a difference. So my question is ... How many days do you have to book at a Disney hotel to get the perks? Can you book one or two nights at a onsite hotel to still get the 60 day FPP bookings and a magic band? or do you have to be at the hotel for the duration of your park ticket? If this was the case , I could do a split stay, splurge a few nights and move to our other hotel the rest of the nights. Has anyone ever tried this or heard of it working?
Even a one night stay gets you a magic band. You'd be able to use it for your whole stay, but you'd only have charging privileges for check in and check out day. You're charging to your room, so once you've checked out that's it. You'd still use it for FPs, ride photos etc.
As for FP, at 60 days your onsite days would open up. After that, you can do them one day at a time. So you'd get 60 days, but you'd have to log on every day.
The onsite perks really aren't that great. Save your money and enjoy your offsite stay
More than 2 cents on onsite / offsite.
Onsite USED to be awesome. There was WDW and then the bounty of cheesy hotels / motels. Then the outside world started to catch up and WDW went into overdrive building resort after resort.
There is something to be said for the "not having to think about it" and just use the amenities in WDW and you are in the proverbial "bubble"
However - I find the cost of staying on site continues to chip away at the easy decision it used to be to stay onsite. Now Disney needs to manufacture these things to make it "SEEM" like it is worth it.
1 - Advanced Dining and FP - really not worth it IMHO. There is really no restaurant in WDW that is a must do for me. Yes some are cooler than others - but IMHO with the exception of a few places - the food is OK at best in most places.
2 - Transportation / car cost. Used to be a no brainer - but with worse and worse bus service and increased cost. Renting a car and paying $ for parking every day is very easily offset by staying off site.
3- Extra Magic hours. Only if you take advantage of them
4 - Charging to the room - you're paying for it either way - do you really care that it is charged to the room or one off?
5 - ROOM - ok this is where offsite really makes a difference. You can get a bigger room and nicer accommodations for much much less off site. For me - the teaming was never a huge draw. Yes I do like AKL, WL and GF. If fine places like Beach and Boardwalk very nice - but something that is easily replicated outside of WDW.
So one of the things you may want to look at is the Hilton near disney springs - they used to (up until recently) offer extra magic.
As far as the bands go - big deal (NOT).
Take a look at getting tickets at Undercover Tourist as well to save $$
The Hilton stopped offering EMH as of Dec 31st 2015.
Another perk - Magical Express
I would agree perhaps about dining, that would not swing it. But the FP booking is definitely valuable. Especially now with Pandora, and soon both Toy Story and Star Wars lands. No chance at 30 days, other than by constant checking and a lot of pixie dust.
I couldn't get FOP even at 60+ days, still ended up finding them after the 30 day mark
Thank you guys for the honest input. My son is really excited about the magic band so maybe i'll just buy one, and one of my main concerns was FFP and transportation. I will be renting a car and the money I save will cover the parking costs. I did think it would be cool to be in the "bubble'" even just for one or two nights so I'll really have to think on this one. Sooo different from my comfort zone here in Cali, but i'm super excited!! @Tigger613 you made some really good points. I cant say for sure if we will even use the extra hour in the morning...we will be on a 3 hour time difference uggghh!!
if you can handle the 405 - you can handle Orlando traffic. People freak out about driving in orlando (not sure why). The signage and proliferation of GPS - you can't get lost. There is "the bubble" but to be perfectly honest - when you are in the bubble - you are in line with a lot of tired sweaty people - so getting in your own car can be nice.
Things will be great!!! If you can - perhaps take some of the saved money and do something you normally wouldn't do - perhaps a nicer dinner or character meal or something else.
Well. After serious consideration, research and calculation, I booked a throwaway room at camp site for the benefit of 3 magic bands, 1 EMH for night for about 70ish. I could get free parking for two days too. However, because we are not going to drive every day so uber actually cost less than renting a car.
So I was able to book my fast pass at 60 days then rolling afterwards.
If fastpass was the only benefit I wanted, I could cancel the room within the 30 days margin.
That was after I booked a magic band at Disney website for 12 when one of those days there was a sale for no shipping cost. At that time I did not find out the throwaway room yet.
Now I am just waiting for the new magic band to arrive!