Tell me all about staying off site, please!


#1

Hello everyone! :flowers:
So we’ve been thinking about going back at Christmas time. :tinytree:
Not that we didn’t love our family reunion their in June, BUT we didn’t get the usual experiences we love. Also we’ve never been at Christmas time, and I would love to get away then. Christmas time around here is sooooo stressful.

Here’s my dilemma! I’m an on-site girl ALL THE WAY, but seeing the really low prices of some these really nice off-site hotels, I’m starting to change my thought process. I’ve seen some as low at 70.00 a night :noo:

Can everyone tell me how the off-site resorts/hotels are?
Are they as nice or nicer than on property (POR)?
I’ve never gone without a dinning plan, P.S. we really like to eat :redface: are we gonna drop a boat load of money on food??
I do have about $600.00 of Visa Reward Dollars to spend as I choose, food/park passes.

All the promo’s this morning really got me all ramped up AGAIN!!!:wacko::wacko:


#2

I have stayed off site at a villa which had it perks…no EMH but lots of space, private pool and the ability to cook a few meals and do laundry. We also stayed one night at a hotel suite…we loved the space for the price and had a car to drive to the parks.
I think you just have to way out the costs and see what works best for you. I love EMH but did just as well getting to parks at rope drop in the morning. (Parks without EMH)…


#3

I was doing a little looking around and saw the Hilton?? Disney owns it, so you still get magical hours and character dinners on Sundays!
Has anyone stayed here before??
It was $750.00 for 5 nights, with a buffet breakfast, lunch and dinner.
How does that sound??
For 2 adults 1 child.


#4

We are normally on-site folks as well, but we stayed in a Residence Inn (Marriott) near Sea World in January when we went to WDW with some friends, and I have to say it was really nice and a good value if you’re trying to take an economical trip. These are suites with full kitchens - full size fridge and dishwasher, etc. They’re clean, roomy, and we got ours (in January, mind you) for $72/night. Probably the biggest perk was that the room cost included a full breakfast buffet…I’d comfortably compare the food/variety to something like Crystal Palace. MUCH better than your usual free continental breakfast. We had breakfast at the hotel each morning, lunch somewhere in the parks, and cooked dinner in our rooms some and ate in the parks some. We had adjoining rooms, and our friends brought some stuff from the grocery store down with them in a cooler for us to cook for dinner. Nothing fancy, but it really wasn’t a pain like I thought cooking on vacation might’ve been. I’m sure it’s not for everyone though.

We’re going down this weekend and trying the Residence Inn at Downtown Disney ($79/night)…I’ll let you know how it is! From what I read on TripAdvisor, it looks like the same thing as the one at Sea World where we stayed previously.

Will you be driving / will you have a car on your trip? That can also make a difference in whether you’re really saving by staying off-property…just something to consider.


#5

$750.00 for 5 nights with meals included would be great. Granted you would be at the parks for some of the meals.


#6

Which Hilton is this?


#7

When we first visited WDW we used to stay at what was then called the Grosvenor Resort? It was right by Downtown Disney and the Market place in fact we saw those places being built! It was known at that time as a Disney Preferred resort? Dont know exactly what that meant but it had a Disney store inside and dedicated buses to the parks. I have very fond memories of GR and if needs be I would stay off site again if it meant the difference between going and not going. All the hotels down the road that leads to the Crossroads shopping area seem pretty nice? But then I am an international visitor and I think American hotels are far nicer than ours so perhaps others may not agree. Let us know what you decide to do.


#8

We are staying off-site this September at Orange Lakes - we have a 2 bed, 2 bath, full kitchen, etc. We will have our car with us, but I am already bummed about no EMH and no towel animals!:laugh: This will be our first ever off-site stay, so I will let you know how it was when we get back.


#9

We stayed at Orange Lake a few years ago. It’s a very nice resort. The only downside was the shuttle. I never even saw the resort shuttle while I was there, even at its designated stops. The shuttle to the parks was a huge hassle. Don’t plan in using it, definitely bring a car. It’s very close to Disney and the driving is easy.

I am also an onsite person, but if the deal is good enough I will stay offsite. The biggest complaint I ever have is shuttles. Never rely on non-Disney buses. Always plan on driving yourself.


#10

We often stay one week on-site, one week off - and have always loved the Marriotts. We’ve stayed at the Marriott at the World Center and one close to SeaWorld - the ground are beautiful and their pools are really nice. This year we’re spending a couple of days before checking into OKW at a condo called Caribe Cove. We actually are considering buying it. The rates are $73.00 per night for a 2 bedroom suite and they are gorgeous! Trust me - I’m a 5 star girl and this place is every bit as nice as a DVC property. Of course, the downside is always not getting the Disney perks - and if you go at Christmas you really can put those extra hours to good use.


#11

Honestly, if you book out far enough, you can get Pop Century or any other value for about $65 a night to $75 a night. Why would you look elsewhere? I have stayed offsite more than once and every time I have a great trip, but it is just not the same. When I enter the gates to the Disney magic I just don’t want to leave.

My brother in law took his wife and kids last year and stayed offsite in a condo that was “a steal” at $350 for the week (rented from friends). They ended up spending more on food, park tickets, the room, and other things than they would have with getting a moderate with deluxe dining, not to mention the loss of time in the park and the “magic”.

He still refuses to listen, even though added up his receipts and showed me I was right.

I am sure there are some people that want offsite but I just don’t see the value with the discounts Disney still provides.


#12

We have stayed there 2 times and LOVED it both times. You should be fine. It is very close to Disney also!!


#13

[QUOTE=princesslindsey;1045061]We stayed at Orange Lake a few years ago. It’s a very nice resort. The only downside was the shuttle. I never even saw the resort shuttle while I was there, even at its designated stops. The shuttle to the parks was a huge hassle. Don’t plan in using it, definitely bring a car. It’s very close to Disney and the driving is easy.

I am also an onsite person, but if the deal is good enough I will stay offsite. The biggest complaint I ever have is shuttles. Never rely on non-Disney buses. Always plan on driving yourself.[/QUOTE]

Thanks for the tip. My DH and I were just discussing this a few minutes ago so I popped on here and found my answer!:laugh: I figured the shuttles elswhere might not be up to par.


#14

[QUOTE=cjtownman;1045070]Honestly, if you book out far enough, you can get Pop Century or any other value for about $65 a night to $75 a night. Why would you look elsewhere? I have stayed offsite more than once and every time I have a great trip, but it is just not the same. When I enter the gates to the Disney magic I just don’t want to leave.

My brother in law took his wife and kids last year and stayed offsite in a condo that was “a steal” at $350 for the week (rented from friends). They ended up spending more on food, park tickets, the room, and other things than they would have with getting a moderate with deluxe dining, not to mention the loss of time in the park and the “magic”.

He still refuses to listen, even though added up his receipts and showed me I was right.

I am sure there are some people that want offsite but I just don’t see the value with the discounts Disney still provides.[/QUOTE]

I sold timeshare and still have friends in the business. I was able to get a 2 bed, 2 bath, etc. at a resort that borders Animal Kingdom for $250 for the entire week.:biggrin: We bought our tickets before the rates went up and from a well-known discount company. We originally had POR booked with free dining and we are still saving $1000, even with that promotion. It can be done. I don’t know what your brothers family did that cost them more for tickets and food. At a timeshare you can save on food because you can have breakfast or whatever in your room, which for my family is pretty convenient. Also, we have stayed pretty much everywhere on WDW property and no cheap rate in the world is worth staying at any of the value resorts - for my family that is. We are just not comfortable there and we have tried every single one. This September will be our first trip off site so I will definately let you all know if the savings was worth it. It might just be a bust! :laugh::mickey:


#15

Thanks! We are looking forward to it!:mickey:


#16

one year we stayed at The hilton,just across the street from DTD …felt like a fish out of water…the second part of the trip was on property …so much better and the magical hours are a plus…have you calculated parking,and to try to get to apark from DTD is a nightmare and the off site transportation was iffy and made many stops…if it were up to me onsite is the only way to go…I understand the meals and costs but to me it so much easier onsite …you said you were going in september …I believe some promos are still available …check with mousesavers.com and see what is still going on


#17

also buying points is another way to go…no resort taxes…big savings …and a 2 bedroom has a kitchen …and studios and 1 bedrooms have mini kitchen but there are outside barbeques available also…


#18

Done both. While we prefer to stay onsite, our trips where we stayed off site were more for a relaxing vacation than park commando trips. We still hit the parks, but for 1-4 hours of stroll time hitting what we feel like and then getting outta there.


#19

We stay off site from time to time. This October we will be staying at one of our other timeshares. I do feel like a fish out of water…I miss the bus services that Disney offers. Since we will be there in a slower time the EMH won’t bother us too much. It will cost us more because of our rental car but we usually spend about the same on food and such since we typically stay in a 1 or 2 bedroom DVC villa. Either way, have a great trip


#20

Alicefan, you are absolutely right! You can stay in a condo and save money. However, they were trying to get the full Disney eating/enjoyment experience. That is when the cost savings will go out the door. If you eat in the condo, you do save a ton. It is the food that will get you, very quickly!