Staying at Hotels Off Site

Deciding whether or not you want to stay on-site at a Disney Resort or off-site is a big decision for many people.

Here we talk about the pros and cons of staying off-site, and we talk about resorts that are on Disney property, but aren't Disney resorts.

I have compiled all of the information on the hotels in area so that you can decide on the hotel that is best for your family.

Why Would I Want to Stay Off-Site?

Staying onsite is definitely the way Disney wants you to vacation. They offer so many perks that you might be wondering, "Why on earth would even consider staying off site?"

There are several reason that you might want to think about staying off-site.

1) Prices at the Disney Resorts don't fit in to everyone's budget. You can often find better values if you are looking at price only.

2) You don't want to stay in the "Disney Bubble" for your entire vacation. If you are also planning on hitting Universal or other attractions you might not want to be stuck on Disney property.

3) If you have hotel points from a chain you could use points for big savings.

4) Now that Disney charges guests to park at the resorts, that is one less perk if you are driving to Orlando.

Is There a Downside to Staying Off-site?

There are definitely perks that you will miss out on if you stay off-site. And the key to all of them is CONVENIENCE. These are some of the downsides to staying at an off-site hotel:

1) You may need to rent a car or pay for transportation to and from the airport. You also won't have the perks of airport luggage pickup, or airline check in.

2) You may miss out on reserving your FastPass+ reservations 60 days in advance. Only a handful of the hotels allow you access to FastPass+ reservations 60 days out. Most require you to wait until 30 days out.

3) You may not be as close to the parks, or have shuttles that run as often as Disney resorts.

4) You won't get free Magic Bands or be able to use room charge when at the parks.

I Want to Stay Off-Site... What Are My Options?

I have put together a list of the off-site resorts so you can compare and decide which resort is best for you.

 

WYNDHAM Lake Buena Vista

wyndham lake buena vista

Standard Room

  • Two Queen Beds
  • Rates start at $98 per night
  • Up to 4 occupants

Preferred Room

  • Queen/King Lake View
  • Rates start at $108 per night
  • Up to 4 occupants 

Who is this is resort best for?

If you are looking for a resort that is close enough to walk to Disney Springs, but you don't want to stay on Disney property. You can take advantage of extra magic hours, and book FastPass+ 60 days in advance.

Parking:

$15 per night

Park Fee:

$25 per night

Breakfast Fee:

$18-$27 for adults; $9-$13 for children

The upside?

Lake View, and a bit quieter than surrounding hotels and park hotels.

The downside?

Shuttle to parks is shared by multiple hotels and makes multiple stops.


Hilton Orlando Buena Vista Palace

Standard Room

  • King Bed + Sleeper Sofa  or 2 Queen Beds
  • Rates begin at $140 per night

Preferred Room

  • King Bedor 2 Double Beds; larger size, some have a parlor room, some have view of Disney Springs
  • Rates begin at $150 - $400

Parking:

$18 per night; $24 daily valet

Resort Fee:

$35 per night

Who is this is resort best for?

If you are looking for a resort that is close enough to walk to Disney Springs, but you don't want to stay on Disney property. You can take advantage of extra magic hours, and book FastPass+ 60 days in advance.

The upside?

Walking distance to Disney Springs. You get some of the perks of a Disney World resort! You can take advantage of extra magic hours, and book FastPass+ 60 days in advance.

 The downside?

Caters to weddings and large group gatherings, so could have large crowds.  


B Resort and Spa

Standard Room

  • Two Queen Beds
  • Rates begin at $80 per night
  • Up to 4 occupants

Preferred Room

  • High Floor Tower View of Disney Skyline
  • Rates Begin around $148
  • Up to 5 occupants

Parking:

Self parking is $22/day. Valet parking is $28/day

Resort Fee:

$30 daily

Shuttle:

Shared

Who is this is resort best for?

People who like spas! If you want a relaxing day in your trip, you have a full service spa in this hotel.

The upside?

Full Service Spa. Also, unique rooms; lots of personality and individual flair. You can take advantage of extra magic hours, and book FastPass+ 60 days in advance.

The downside?

I guess if you don’t like personality and style it would be a bad fit for you.


Hilton Orlando Lake Buena Vista

Hilton Orlando Lake Buena Vista

Standard Room

  • Two Queen Beds/ One King Bed
  • Rates begin at $157
  • Up to 4 occupants

Preferred Room

  • Two Queen beds/ One King Bed with Disney View
  • Rates begin at $188 
  • Up to 4 occupants 

Parking:

Self: $18 per night; Valet: $24 per night

Resort Fee:

$35 per day

Shuttle:

Shared

Who is this is resort best for?

People who have to work on business while on vacation (boo that sucks); this hotel has a lot of business amenities (as does the other Hilton, but the Hilton Palace has more big meeting/ gathering spaces and this Lake one has small business needs more so than as- large gathering spaces.)  

The upside?

A more boring smaller quieter place to do work while on vacation if need be. It is said that the interior of the rooms of this Hilton are very nice and newly upgraded. You can take advantage of extra magic hours, and book FastPass+ 60 days in advance.

The downside?

The other Hilton seems nicer in almost every regard. Room pricing is comparable.

 

Holiday Inn Resort Orlando Water Park

(In my opinion, best budget option.) **This property is off Disney Property, but located only about one mile from the East Entrance.**

Just rebuilt in 2016. Very nice and up to date. Rooms and property geared more towards children.

Standard Room

  • One King + A bunk bed for kids.
  • Rates begin at $71-$90 per night. (+$10 per adult after two adults.)
  • Up to 4 occupants

  • Preferred Room

  • Suites have a King + big bunk bed for kids.

  • Parking:

    $12 per night first vehicle/+$17 for each additional vehicle.

    Resort Fee:

    $30 daily

    Shuttle:

    They offer their own complimentary shuttles which run on a specific schedule.

    Who is this is resort best for?

    Kids. People who like water parks.

    The upside?

    Kids will like it a lot.  Lots of activities for them like the waterpark, arcade, laser tag, etc…

    You can take advantage of extra magic hours, and book FastPass+ 60 days in advance.

    The downside?

    There’s not as much for adults as at some other hotels.  There is also Holiday Inn Resort Orlando Lake Buena Vista, which is slightly cheaper, just as close to WDW, and much more boring looking. Anyone considering Holiday Inn Lake Buena Vista who has kids, should just go to the water park one instead.

    Also anyone staying at either Holiday Inn should check out their Mouse Savers program: https://www.mousesavers.com/holiday-inn-resort-lake-buena-vista/ for deals.

     

    These Resorts Are On Disney Property but not Disney Owned

    Four Seasons Resort Orlando

    Standard Room

  • Two Queens/ One King
  • Rates start at $570 per night, if you are lucky and score an uncommon deal
  • Up to 4 occupants
  • Preferred Room

  • Park View/Lake View
  • Rates start at $850 for deals
  • Up to 4 occupants

  • Suites

  • Preferred View
  • Rates are $1,300-5,000+ per night
  • Up to 5+ occupants

  • Parking:

    Valet

    Shuttle:

    Luxury Motor Coach running each 30 minutes to and from park, and each 60 minutes to various nearby related attractions 

    Who is this is resort best for?

    Anyone who can afford it. This is your best option for luxury.

    The upside?

    Well…To put it simply... it’s amazing. Think of a thing, and Four Seasons has it or can get it at the drop of a hat. It’s close and convenient, on Disney property but not operated by it. 

    You can take advantage of extra magic hours, and book FastPass+ 60 days in advance.

    The downside?

    Obviously price.  There is tons of stuff for kids to do here, including five acres of pools and water slides and playgrounds and a lazy river, but also a lot of less luxurious spots have such amenities for kids as well (minus the lazy river), and I don’t think kids are going to really care whether their slide is the fanciest slide out of all the slides in the area. Then again, you can always just order their luxury coach to take you and your kids to anywhere you’d like to go whenever you’d like to go, and Four Seasons concierges can satisfy any whim any client expresses at any time. Really, there’s no down side if you can afford it, and this is (in my opinion) a better option for a luxury spot than all the rest.  

     

    Swan and Dolphin Hotels

    swan and dolphin hotel

    Standard Room

  • Two Queens
  • Rates begin at $250 per night (with a charge of +$25 for the third and fourth occupant)
  • Up to 4 occupants
  • Various Suites available as well

  • Parking:

    $23 daily; $33 valet daily

    Resort Fee:

    $23.00 daily

    Shuttle:

    Every 15-20 minutes bus service to park, walking distance of Epcot (5-10 minutes).

    Who is this is resort best for?

    Rates are comparable to Disney resorts.  The two hotels have something called: DreamsRes (Dreams Unlimited Travel) with frequent deals regarding room rates, and some of these deals are not well advertised. Those who want to stay here should check out:https://www.dreamsunlimitedtravel.com/reservations/index.htm (1-800-227-1500)

    For the most update to date deals with these hotels.  Dolphin is now a Sheraton hotel, and Swan is Westin. Dolphin is bigger, Swan is quieter. Both share the same property and are right across from each other.

    The upside?

    Comparable rates, deals being offered frequently, and an on-site location with two award winning hotels.  Plus, both hotels offer reward star points for staying there. Those points can be used at other locations. Plus, if you are with a big party and some want a big space and others want something quieter, your party can split in these two hotels and be right next to each other still, sharing pool and restaurant areas. 

    You can take advantage of extra magic hours, and book FastPass+ 60 days in advance.

    The downside?

    These hotels are on site but are, normally, slightly more expensive than comparable Disney-owned resorts. However they do frequent deals with DreamsRes so that might not be the case oftentimes.   

    There is golf and a spa and pools for adults, but the kid activities-amenities are comparatively lesser than at other hotels. Still, it’s right on site so the kids can just walk/shuttle over to stuff.

    Shades of Green 

    This is a hotel for active and retired military personnel + their families; proof of military service must be provided. Check eligibility requirements here:https://www.shadesofgreen.org/accommodations/eligibility

    Standard Room

  • Two Queen Beds
  • Rates begin at $115 per night.
  • Up to 5 occupants

  • Preferred Room

  • Poolside - Two Queens
  • Rates begin at $125 per night
  • Up to 5 Occupants

  • Suites
  • Two Queens plus King /Four Queens
  • Rates begin at $295-$445
  • 6-10 occupants

  • Parking:

    $7 per night/ Valet $12 per night

    Who is this is resort best for?

    Active and Retired Military personnel and their family.

    The upside?

    This resort books reservations, shuttles guests, provides special offers, and purchases tickets within itself for its clients.  You can take advantage of extra magic hours, and book FastPass+ 60 days in advance.

    The downside

    Most people are not eligible.

    Still confused or need help?

    I am happy to help! Contact me.

    See you at the parks,
    -Julie

     

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