How to Choose the Right Disney Resort

Polynesian Village
Credit: Disney

There’s no denying that a Walt Disney World Resort vacation is a magical experience, but there are certainly some things that Guests can do that help to avoid any stressors and enhance the magic as much as possible. A critical planning element that cannot be overlooked is choosing the right Disney Resort, and this can be more complicated than it seems thanks to several dozen options.

Water View

Credit: disneymeetingsandevents.com

Guests who spend time considering and comparing Disney Resorts before booking their Walt Disney World Resort vacations ensure that their accommodations are the perfect match for their wants and needs and create an even more memorable experience. Be sure to consider the following criteria to help choose the perfect Disney Resort for any magical trip to the Walt Disney World Resort!

Disney's Polynesian Village Resort

Credit: Disney

Know Your Price Point

Budgeting is one of the most important things when it comes to planning a Walt Disney World Resort vacation, and the Disney Resorts are broken down into three categories divided by price. Deluxe Resorts such as Disney’s Polynesian Village Resort, Disney’s Yacht Club Resort, Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge, Disney’s Wilderness Lodge, Disney’s Saratoga Springs Resort & Spa, Disney’s Riviera Resort, and Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort & Spa are the most expensive accommodations, however, they often include more amenities, dining, and transportation options than other Disney Resorts.


Credit: Disney

The next level down is Moderate Disney Resorts, which include locations like Disney’s Port Orleans Resort Riverside & French Quarter, Disney’s Caribbean Beach Resort, Disney’s Fort Wilderness Resort, and Disney’s Coronado Springs Resort. Finally, the most economical category is Value Disney Resorts, which include Disney’s Pop Century Resort, Disney’s Art of Animation Resort, and Disney’s All-Star Resorts. Beginning the decision by looking at a price point and selecting a Disney Resort category can help to immediately narrow down the possible choices.

Disney's Contemporary Resort

Credit: Disney

Consider Location

Another major point to consider when choosing a Disney Resort is its location. Guests who plan on spending the majority of their time in the Magic Kingdom should really consider staying on the monorail line at Disney’s Contemporary Resort in the main building or Bay Lake Tower, Disney’s Polynesian Village Resort, or Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort & Spa. The same logic applies to Guests who know that they are going to spend a ton of time in EPCOT opting for a location on Crescent Lake like Disney’s Beach Club Resort or Disney’s BoardWalk Inn.

Disney's Port Orleans Resort - French Quarter

Credit: Disney

Consider Disney Resort Size

Each Disney Resort features its own unique theme which is brought to life through architecture, landscaping, and much more. Wandering through the grounds of a Disney Resort can whisk Guests away to another time and place, and the size and scope of a Disney Resort can majorly differ depending on the option.

The Big Blue Pool

Credit: Disney

Some Disney Resorts like Disney’s Caribbean Beach Resort and Disney’s Coronado Springs Resort are absolutely massive with sprawling grounds that can take close to ten minutes to travel from one side to another. On the other hand, Disney’s Port Orleans Resort – French Quarter is very small and compact, which adds a sense of charm and also makes it easy to get around the grounds on foot in a matter of minutes.

Close Up

Credit: ziggyknowsdisney.com

Compare Transportation Options

Any Guest who stays on property at a Walt Disney World Resort has access to complimentary Disney Transportation to and from their Disney Resort that they can use to get to the Disney Parks, as well as Disney Springs. Depending on the location, Guests can utilize buses, monorails, boats, and the Disney Skyliner to move around, and each Disney Resort features its own unique blend of Disney Transportation.

disney skyliner

Credit: Disney Parks

Definitely want to be on the Disney Skyliner? Then opt for Disney’s Caribbean Beach Resort or Disney’s Pop Century Resort. Dead set on riding the monorail each morning? Disney’s Contemporary Resort has the closest station to the Magic Kingdom. Transportation is a key part of every day at the Walt Disney World Resort, so it is absolutely necessary to consider what options are available at each Disney Resort.


Credit: resortsgal.com

Scope Out Dining Options

Like individual theming, each Disney Resort features its own unique dining locations that serve up delicious menus throughout each day. Some Disney Resorts have a multitude of table service dining options like Disney’s Contemporary Resort, Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort & Spa, and Disney’s Yacht Club Resort, whereas others are only home to quick-service locations like Disney’s Port Orleans Resort – French Quarter and Disney’s Art of Animation Resort. Guests should be aware of the dining options available at each Disney Resort to make the most informed decision for their dining preferences throughout their vacation.

Dsney's Yacht Club & Crescent Lake

Credit: Disney

Check Out Recreation

Guests who know that they are going to spend quality time at their Disney Resort throughout the vacation should check out the recreation options available at each individual location. Some Disney Resorts feature multiple pools, boat rentals, bicycle rentals, walking paths, lounges with live entertainment, and more, whereas others might only have one pool and limited recreation. Knowing the options ahead of time can help a Guest decide whether they are going to spend time enjoying all that the Disney Resort has to offer, or instead heading out to the Disney Parks or other locations each day.

Credit: Disney

Become Familiar with the Layout

The final important thing to consider when choosing the best Disney Resort for any Walt Disney World Resort vacation is to consider the actual layout. Once a Guest decides on where they would like to stay, they should look at the layout of the Disney Resort and consider what area they would like their room to be located in.

Water View

Credit: Disney

It’s not always a guarantee, but Guests can make room requests upon booking for certain buildings or areas that the Cast Members then do their best to fulfill. Another way to secure a specific location is by booking a designated type of room. For example, booking a Pool View Room will secure a spot overlooking the pool, which then tends to be close to other amenities. It might cost more, but guaranteeing the option to be located in an ideal spot at each Disney Resort is definitely worth considering!

We hope you find these tips helpful when it comes to booking your magical Disney vacation!

About Caitlin Kane

Caitlin Kane has been visiting Walt Disney World since she was a child and has developed a deep love and appreciation of the Disney Parks with a particular interest in the small details and history that can be found all around. Visiting every chance she gets, Caitlin loves to enjoy the ambiance of the Disney Parks and try something new every time. She can often be found eating and drinking her way through the Epcot International Food & Wine Festival, riding the Haunted Mansion, sipping on a Lapu Lapu, pretending Illuminations: Reflections of Earth was still in existence, and enjoying seeing the magic through the eyes of her children. When not in WDW, Caitlin can be found at home in New York dreaming of a ride on Living with the Land and counting down the days until her next trip.