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  1. #1

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    Is a WDW Resort vacation trip experience worth the money and time?

    Well, you know I"m a Disneylander and a Disney fanatic at heart. I'd practically grew up with Disneyland since I was several months old. I went there so many times as a baby, child, teen, and now young adult. So, it's my home theme park and Disneyland suppresses other theme parks that I have also went to. Like USH, Knotts, and Sea World.

    After going to Disneyland so many times, I'd always wanted to experience Walt Disney World Resort at least once, because I know that WDW has their own exclusive attraction/rides that there that Disneyland does not have. I know it's a lot larger and has 4 theme parks and 2 water parks, a bigger Downtown Disney, and several recreational parks like golf and others. But, what disappoints me is that the Magic Kingdom is inferior to Disneyland. I done a lot of research as well by watching videos and reading books.

    Some of my family already experienced it more than once, so why can't I? My mom wants to visit there too. But, after looking up the ticket price and vacation packages combined with the air fare tickets. It costs lots of money just for 5 days and 4 nights and even more expensive when it's 6 days and 5 nights.

    After I'd trying so many times on Disney sweepstakes to win a vacation package to WDW Resort. I'd never won anything at all. By doing those sweepstakes and try to win, it can save lots of money for us.

    So, is WDW Resort experience worth the time and money?

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  2. #2

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    Re: Is a WDW Resort vacation trip experience worth the money and time?

    Cost is a big factor in deciding whether or not you want to make a trip to Florida to experience Disney World. I have personally spent a whole lot of money traveling there, and did not feel at any time that I wasted my money. Vacations to Disney World are not cheap. You can vacation many other places for a lot less money.

    Finding out exactly what a trip would cost you is an important first move. A natural 2nd move would be to start saving, and pick a date that fits in with your savings plan.

    Then I suggest that you pick up a few guidebooks, and read about the "lay of the land". Learn how it all works, because it is indeed a world, versus the small piece of real estate that Disneyland sits on.

    The next part is hard, and greatly debated. Try your darndest to not arrive at Disney World with any preconceived notions. There's lots of fun to be had there. It's a different vacation destination than many others. Enjoy it for what it is.
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  3. #3

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    Re: Is a WDW Resort vacation trip experience worth the money and time?

    Being an East-Coast-er, I'm a bit partial to Disney World. Even though I grew up in Kentucky, my family made the trip to Orlando usually every other summer. It's magical. Heck, it's Disney. Of course it's magical! As Barbaraann said, it's worth your money. Yes, the mouse knows how to squeeze your wallet dry, but he also knows how to give you a great experience.

    I've been to Disneyland a couple of times and yes, it's magical too. The hard part is that the two parks (Disneyland and Magic Kingdom) are just close enough in design that you'll try to compare them. Don't! They're apples and oranges. Just have a great time!

    I guess the point I'm trying to make is save your pennies, pack a bag, put on your bug spray, fly to Orlando and have a great time!!!

  4. #4

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    Re: Is a WDW Resort vacation trip experience worth the money and time?

    I'm from New England and I try to go every other year to WDW. To me it's always worth it. I've been doing it for years and plan on doing it for many more years.

  5. #5

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    Re: Is a WDW Resort vacation trip experience worth the money and time?

    I think it's most definitely worth it. there's so much to experience there that isn't at disneyland. i sort of feel like it's actually cheaper than disneyland, too, when you get down to it. though that may not be true for you if you're an AP holder for disneyland.

  6. #6

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    Re: Is a WDW Resort vacation trip experience worth the money and time?

    I would suggest looking at staying off property, renting a car and experiencing some of the other parks. Disney's Animal Kingdom and EPCOT Center are truly unique, even if the latter has had some of its soul destroyed over the years. Islands of Adventure has two of the best attractions in the world in the Amazing Adventures of Spider-Man and Harry Potter and the Forbidden Journey. SeaWorld Orlando has some similarities to SeaWorld San Diego, but it too is different. This spring they will even be opening the brand new Antartica: Empire of the Penguins which will feature a trackless ride component.

    Even if you only want to see the Disney parks, I would still recommend looking at off site accommodations. You can find so much better deals. Yes, you will likely have to rent a car, but you then still get some more freedom. Evening Extra Magic Hours are also set to be cut from three hours down to two hours in January.

  7. #7

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    Re: Is a WDW Resort vacation trip experience worth the money and time?

    ah, i would recommend staying on property! for me, that's part of the magic of disney world. it's immersive. even if you just stay at pop century (which can have pretty decent rates).

    i do want to see the new harry potter section at universal, so i would agree with that suggestion

  8. #8

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    Re: Is a WDW Resort vacation trip experience worth the money and time?

    Quote Originally Posted by lazyboy97O View Post
    I would suggest looking at staying off property, renting a car and experiencing some of the other parks. Disney's Animal Kingdom and EPCOT Center are truly unique, even if the latter has had some of its soul destroyed over the years. Islands of Adventure has two of the best attractions in the world in the Amazing Adventures of Spider-Man and Harry Potter and the Forbidden Journey. SeaWorld Orlando has some similarities to SeaWorld San Diego, but it too is different. This spring they will even be opening the brand new Antartica: Empire of the Penguins which will feature a trackless ride component.

    Even if you only want to see the Disney parks, I would still recommend looking at off site accommodations. You can find so much better deals. Yes, you will likely have to rent a car, but you then still get some more freedom. Evening Extra Magic Hours are also set to be cut from three hours down to two hours in January.
    The only way WDW vacations are worth the money and time are staying on property; they really put you into the feeling of being in an actual world of Disney.

    If you plan on staying property, I would say go for it, but if you aren't, I don't think it's worth your while.
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  9. #9

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    Re: Is a WDW Resort vacation trip experience worth the money and time?

    Quote Originally Posted by Chesire View Post
    The only way WDW vacations are worth the money and time are staying on property; they really put you into the feeling of being in an actual world of Disney.

    If you plan on staying property, I would say go for it, but if you aren't, I don't think it's worth your while.
    I disagree. I've traveled four times to WDW and have always stayed off-property (lower costs)... The magic is still there once you drive under those "Welcome" arcs and beyond. The four parks and surrounding amenities are well-worth your time and money, specially the gorgeous Animal Kingdom and EPCOT (as a fellow MiceChatter pointed above). I bet you'll also *love* Magic Kingdom if you don't arrive set on comparing it directly with Disneyland... It's a true full-day park with one of the best nighttime firework spectaculars (Wishes) and my absolute favorite version of Space Mountain.

    Believe me, it's worth it.

  10. #10

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    Re: Is a WDW Resort vacation trip experience worth the money and time?

    I would recommend that you look around for air fare seperaetly from the Disney packages. I found that I was able to save quite a bit by booking my air directly from the airlines. That being said my first trip the air fare (from central California) was over a third of the total cost (to be fair that was during Thanksgiving week). I beleive the total for that trip for two adults for ten days staying at all star music with deluxe dining and air bought seperately was just under $4500 (not counting souveniers)
    The second trip last year I was able to get a good deal on air and was able to do another ten day trip for two adults at pop century with deluxe dining for a little over $3000.

    To put the cost in context it typically cost for the two of us around $1500 for a four day trip to Disneyland by the time we add up gas, hotel, tickets and food.
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  11. #11

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    Re: Is a WDW Resort vacation trip experience worth the money and time?

    You might want to post this question over on the Disneyland board, since I think you really want to know if the trip to WDW is worth it for a person who lives near DL and goes there often. That board is full of DL locals who can give you perspective on that.

    Of course it is worth it to someone who lives in, say, Iowa, because for them to see ANY Disney park is going to cost thousands of dollars. If money is really tight right now, you might be better off waiting a few years. The pressure of spending the money paired with the natural tendency to compare WDW to DL might cast a dark cloud over your vacation.

    As far as on- or off-property, I vote for on, because I find it stressful to drive in unfamiliar places. The stress of having to navigate alone would be enough to put a damper on my whole vacation, not to mention having to schlep to your car at the end of the day. I also think that one of the major things that WDW has going for it compared to DL is the fact that it is a huge immersive "world," and staying on property adds to that. Other than extra magic hours and free transportation, Disney resort guests get a few other perks, such as earlier access to dining reservations and free package delivery to your hotel.

    But you can certainly save a lot of money by staying off property, and it is more convenient if you plan on visiting non-Disney attractions, so if the idea of driving isn't unpleasant to you, or if the "immersive" experience isn't that important to you, that could be the way to go.

    Whether you decide to spend the money or not, I think you can consider yourself very lucky that you live close to DL and can go there as often as you do! Those of us in other parts of the country have to have this inner struggle of whether or not we can afford a trip every time we want to get a Disney fix! Hahaha that is definitely a "first-world problem."

  12. #12

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    Re: Is a WDW Resort vacation trip experience worth the money and time?

    One thing that might help with cost is booking through AAA, if you are a member. I was able to get a fantastic rate last year, two grand less than I had priced it out for on my own, with the meal plan included.

    I have been to WDW three times and stayed on property each time, once at each class of hotel (value, moderate, deluxe). Honestly in my opinion I'd either go for the value or the deluxe. With the moderate hotel, it seemed like half the time you had to ride the bus with the other poor schmucks from the value hotel, so why not just book at the value hotel and save money? The rooms are a pretty decent size, most of them have decent pools, and the value hotels are a pretty good, well, value.

    If you want to go whole hog, the deluxe resorts are on the monorail and it's super convenient not to have to catch a bus at the end of the night. Plus the theming is gorgeous, especially at the Polynesian.
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  13. #13

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    Re: Is a WDW Resort vacation trip experience worth the money and time?

    My last trip to WDW was in 2006, and I can't wait to go back. Speaking as a Disneyland annual pass holder, I definately feel a trip to Walt Disney World is worth it. I would also stay on property. To me, that truly enhances the experience.

  14. #14

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    Re: Is a WDW Resort vacation trip experience worth the money and time?

    Thanks for all the advice and thoughts, Micechatters!

    Now I know why WDW is the ultimate Disney experience that is worth your time and money. But, still if you want a true Disney theme park experience. First visit the original Disneyland Resort first and then visit WDW Resort.

    Now I still need to visit WDW Resort with a couple of friends of course or simply with my family.

    I need to go there and experience it at least once! If I do go, I will bring my camera and take lots of pictures!! Maybe even record my own HD videos.

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  15. #15

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    Re: Is a WDW Resort vacation trip experience worth the money and time?

    As a Disneyland local and annual pass holder for many years, I'll chime in here. Everyone I know who knows I love Disneyland would always tell me "You have to go to Disney World! I can't believe you've never been!" My attitude was always kind of "Meh... I have Disneyland here, I love it, how much different can it be in Florida? Plus, it just sounds big and overwhelming and Epcot sounds like a snooze." Well, let me tell you, all that changed last year. I was invited by some DVC (Disney Vacation Club) friends to join them on their trip to WDW. It was one of the best weeks of my entire life. Granted, there is no way I would have been able to afford that trip if I had to pay for our deluxe lodging - I was covered by the generosity of my friends and their timeshare, but it still cost me a fair amount with all the other expenses involved, but it was SO worth it. WDW is a completely different experience than Disneyland, and Epcot, which I thought would be a bore, is now my favorite park other than Disneyland. I actually spent more time there than I did at MK, and I'm going again this December and the park I look forward to visiting the most is Epcot.

    Whether or not an experience is "worth it" to a person is a completely personal decision, but from a person who has always loved Disneyland and finally got around to visiting WDW just by happenstance and good fortune, yes, it was most definitely "worth it" to me.

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