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We are trying to figure out which is the best package and which is cheapest for us . We are considering staying on Disney at one of their resorts with the magic your way park hopper and dining plan, but is it cheaper just to stay at a Holiday Inn?
- Asked by Kristin from FL on 1/4/2013
Hi Kristin! Bravo to you for weighing your options in order for your family to have a great, yet budget-friendly vacation at Walt Disney World-I've done the same thing many times in the past. While staying off-site at one of the chain hotels is definitely an option, and most likely would be less expensive upon first glance, we found that staying at a Walt Disney Resort had many benefits that we were missing out on when we didn't stay on-site. Let me tell you about some that we found-first of all, if staying off-site, you will need a rental vehicle. That can be at least a couple of hundred dollars. If you stay at a Walt Disney World Resort you will be able to take advantage of Disney's Magical Express-a free transportation service to and from the Orlando Airport for you and your luggage. You will be able to use the Disney Resort Transportation which will take you to all of the theme parks, the water parks and Downtown Disney - no need for a car rental to get around! You will also be able to take advantage of Extra-Magic Hours - again, available only to resort guests, where each morning one of the parks will open an hour earlier than the published time and one of the parks will stay open up to three hours after park closing. If you are thinking of adding a Disney Dining Plan, that is also only available to those staying at a Walt Disney World Resort. And of course, the fabulous theming and amenities that Disney offers at it's resort hotels is second to none - have you looked at the new Disney's Art of Animation Resort
? It is a Value Resort with family suites that sleep up to 6, and is my new favourite! It could be a great option for your family. Finally, you get the amazing customer service that Disney is famous for! I hope I've given you some food-for-thought. Please feel free to ask me any more questions that may come up as you plan.