After thinking about staying on-site or off-site, how large of a room do you need and how much do you need in the room – the next thing to decide then the resort. There are as many options to stay on site as there are opinions! Walt Disney World has done an excellent job of giving Guests a wide range of options from Value to Deluxe Villas. Where you will stay will depend on your budget, what you want to experience while at the hotel and to a certain extent (if location is important), which parks will you visit.
The least expensive option is a Value resort. While some people prefer a moderate or deluxe hotel, I prefer to be comfortable but still have a great price. There are several options with the value hotels: the 3 All-Star Resorts, Pop Century and the newest Art of Animation.
There are actually 3 All-Star Resorts; All-Star Sports, All-Star Music and All-Star Movies. Each of these has their own unique theme, food court, shop, bus stop and (2) pools. Each All-Star Resort has fewer than 2000 rooms. These rooms are 260 sq. ft. and will have 2 double beds, single sinks, table and mini-frig. They are very comfortable and have space to unpack. We comfortably slept 2 adults and 2 kids for almost a week without issue. The bed area of the room is separated from the sink and bathroom by a curtain, which makes getting ready early before waking the kiddos up easy. All-Star Music Resort also has family suites. The rooms in the All-Star Resorts start at $97/night and will depend on the time of year that you are visiting.
Pop Century is larger than each of the All-Star Resort, having just under 2900 rooms. This hotel also has one bus stop by the food court and lobby. Unlike the All-Star Resorts, this hotel has 3 pools, giving each area their own pool without walking to the front and the main pool each time. The rooms are similar to All-Star Resorts with the dividing curtain allowing for those sleeping having a quiet and darker area then the bathroom area. The rooms at Pop Century Resorts start at $112/night and again will be dependent on when you are visiting.
Art of Animation
This hotel is unique because over 1100 of their rooms are family suites and they have just under 900 rooms that are standard guest rooms. These standard rooms are slightly larger than Pop Century or all-Stars, being 277 sq.ft. The standard rooms are similar to the other value hotels with double beds, mini-frig, drawers, table and also a curtain dividing the area. The main difference in this hotel is that most rooms here are family suites. In addition, you will want to know that the standard rooms are located toward the back of the resort in the Little Mermaid area. There are also 3 pools scattered throughout the property. The standard rooms at Art of Animation start at $132/night again, depending on the time of year you are visiting.
Over-all, if you want an inexpensive hotel option without staying off-site, the value hotels are definitely a good bang for your buck, especially with the benefits that Disney Resort Guests receive: free parking, Magical Express, Early Magic Hours and the ability to make FastPasses at 60 days. Have you stayed at any of the value hotels? Did you find them comfortable? Which value hotel did you prefer?
Debbie and her husband live in Collegedale, TN where her youngest son is going to college. She is a huge Disney fan who dreams of someday retiring and working as a tour guide at Walt Disney World. She has enjoyed many trips to WDW with children, grandchildren and sometimes adults only. It is her ultimate goal to make sure everyone who visits WDW has the same magical time that she enjoys every time she visits.