7 Reasons Staying on Disney Property is the Worst

You’re going to Walt Disney World — congrats! But where to stay?! That can be a big question when booking your vacation.

Wilderness Lodge Resort in Disney World

Be forewarned — there can be some REAL drawbacks to staying at a Walt Disney World resort. We just want you to be aware before you make any decisions.

Here are 7 reasons Staying on Disney Property is the Worst.

1. You May Get Woken Up by a Dog

Or a mouse. Or even an alien! When you schedule a wake-up call at a Walt Disney World resort, somebody full of character is on the other end.

Pluto in EPCOT

You can arrange for your character wake-up call on your in-room phone, but don’t expect a normal human to wake you up!

2. It Can Be Hard to Choose What You Want for Breakfast

At a “normal” resort with a continental breakfast, your choices will be fairly standard — a few pastries or bagels, cereal, and perhaps some eggs and bacon. It’s simple and it does the job! But don’t expect that at the Disney resort restaurants!

Breakfast spread at ‘Ohana

Sure you can get all of those breakfast staples — but there will also be options such as Beignets, Tonga Toast, Chicken and Waffles, Beef Brisket HashBerry Vanilla Pancakes, and of course — Mickey Waffles complete with Various Fruit Sauce Toppings.

With all these delicious and unique options, choosing can be quite difficult. I recommend trying something new each day, just to make sure you cover all of your bases. After all, breakfast is the most important meal of the day.

3. Swimming Pools at Home Just Won’t Compare

Sadly after you swim in a pool with a volcano slide with a view of Cinderella Castle, regular pools just won’t compare.

Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort & Spa

Be prepared for regular pools to underwhelm your kids — and maybe even you — once you leave Disney.

4. A Giant Seawitch May Loom Over Your Door

This may be the scariest thing to wake up to EVER. You may think you’re still asleep and having a nightmare.

Or is this just me?


But I suppose, waking up to Ursula in Walt Disney World is still better than waking up anywhere else.

5. There’s Just So Many Transportation Options

Buses and boats and monorails — oh my! When you’re at a Disney resort, one of the perks is free transportation to the parks. But there’s just so many darn options, it’s enough to give you a headache trying to decide! Don’t fret — we have a guide to Disney Transportation to help you figure out everything. And once you do, you’ll be spoiled for life.

Views from the Disney Skyliner

Related issue — you and/or your kids may have just as much fun on the Monorail or the Skyliner as a Disney attraction. Just sayin’.

6. You May Not Make It to the Parks

Between the pools, amazing dining, and unique flair at each resort — you may find you don’t even want to go to the parks some days.

Animal Kingdom Lodge

And we at AllEars.net think that’s totally fine! Take a day to relax by the pool, have an amazing meal, grab a craft cocktail, hit the spa, ride a bike, take a horse-drawn carriage, rent a boat,  or walk around on the trails. Disney Resorts are full of magic all on their own, so you should enjoy it!

7. You Won’t Want to Leave

The gorgeous views, intricate details, outstanding guest service, and magic at every turn…why would you want to leave?!

Grand Floridian lobby

The real reason staying at a Disney resort is the WORST is that you’ll probably want to stay there forever… and yet you’ll eventually have to leave.

Well, would you look at that — as it turns out, this is actually a list of why staying at a Disney resort is the BEST! Who would’ve thought. Do you have other reasons you love staying at Disney World resorts? Tell us in the comments! As always, stay tuned to All Ears for more Disney news and updates.

And don’t forget to check out our readers’ reviews of all the Disney resorts in our Rate and Review section!

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What are your favorite reasons for staying at a Disney resort? Let us know in the comments!

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Molly is a lifelong Disney enthusiast, and former Walt Disney World Guest Relations Cast Member and tour guide. Her Walt Disney World favorites include Festival of the Lion King, Big Thunder Mountain Railroad, Fantasmic!, Mickey-shaped pretzels and rice krispie treats, and anything with Buzz Lightyear! She lives in Orlando with her husband (who she met in Guest Relations) and their two rescue dogs, Kronk and Cruella de Vil (Ella for short!)

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19 Replies to “7 Reasons Staying on Disney Property is the Worst”

  1. The worst reason to stay at a Disney resort is that they can lose your luggage, cause you to be late to the airport (where you have to go without your luggage anyway) and never apologize for it. When they finally find your luggage (that’s the good news), they mail it to you but it will be several days after you arrive home and there were probably things in it you needed. Worst customer service ever at Pop Century Resort. No one, and I mean NO ONE would take responsibility. Please change the management there. Otherwise, cute resort with a fun pool and theme.

  2. The best reason to stay on property is to enter and stay in the “Disney Bubble”. Once we hit the Welcome to Walt Disney World” the outside world is gone. No news or regular tv, just Stacy. I did the Double Tree on hotel boulevard once it was nice and cheap but the real world intruded. Is it expensive on property? Oh yes. Do the Parking fees at said hotels irritate and grind as money grubby by a huge entity? Yes. But still we stay onsite at least once a year. Maybe a value or a moderate an occasional deluxe. You can’t take it with you…right?

  3. I’ve always felt like staying on property allowed you to enjoy much more of Disney. I advise those who ask me about it that you can probably do as much Disney with a 5-day On Property vacation as someone will with a 7- day Off Property vacation. This only applies if you are content doing ONLY Disney parks. If you venture off property to Universal or one of many other attractions, then all bets are off.
    I’m with everyone else on here as far as value for dollars spent goes. Disney is pricing themselves out of the average family’s budget. I’ll almost be glad to see the next recession hit just to witness what Disney will do to try to get those whom they have alienated with price gouging to “come back”. Nobody has been more loyal to the Mouse than my family while the kids were growing up. I’m so glad they are grown now, as even though we all love the thoughts of visiting often, the pricing makes it too easy to say, Nah, maybe in a few more years.

  4. I took my family for our “once in a lifetime” Disney vacation about 25 years ago. We stayed at the Yacht Club for about $200/night. It was truly magical. I have had opportunity to stay at various Disney resorts since then, and have witnessed firsthand the decline of the resorts as a whole. Theming is still awesome. But take that out of the equation and there are much nicer non-Disney options nearby. I really don’t even look at the Disney resorts anymore when planning.

  5. I agree with everything in the article. The one thing you left out that really is the worst is price. The room and package rates are so expensive the average middle class family can barely afford to stay at a Disney resort. We used to go every year and that became every other year. Now we go every 4 to 5 years solely because of cost.
    There is nothing like a Disney resort. It’s a shame that they have made so cost prohibitive.

    1. You are right. It is a substantial amount of money. The last time that I took my family (me, wife, 2 kids) it cost approximately $7,000.00. Now, we did stay for 10 days/9 nights but many people cannot afford that for a vacation. I definitely go every 2 to 3 years because of cost.

      1. If you go every 2/3 years, 10 years from no you will have spent over $30,000 on WDW. You could just about spend a month jet-setting the globe, or many months at other USA vacation spots for that. Just curious, If someone gave you a free vacation to visit anyplace in the world would you still choose WDW?

          1. Your killing me CS. Let me rephrase that. If someone gave you a free trip anywhere in the world that could not include anything Disney, where would you go?

          2. Ken, have you ever thought that many people don’t want to travel ONLY once every 10 years? Kids are only little once. We logged over 36 family vacations while our kids were young, all except 1 was to WDW. That’s what us and our kids wanted to do.

      2. Ed, I try not to think any more than I have to. It’s bad for my girlish figure. I’m just curious what extreme Disney enthusiasts do, if anything, when they are not at Disney. I know I get bored visiting the same place more than a few times. And, true enough, kids are only young once so why not give them a wide variety of enjoyable family vacation memories to look back on. Sometime parents need to get their kids out of their comfort zone for their own good. Some of the best vacations my kids have had were ones they didn’t even want to go on (Yellowstone, for one).

        1. Oh Ken! I priced Yellowstone for our family of 4 by the time we bought flights, rooms and found tour guides to take you through Yellowstone, it cost more than my last Disney vacation to Beach Club without food.
          I really Can’t figure you out Ken. You seem to hate Disney and yet here you are trolling every article! I have to say I find you hilarious. Never change.

          1. Thank you Nicole. A troll has hate in their heart. I love everyone here. I’ve always been sarcastic and I’ve always liked playing the Devil’s Advocate. Even if I agree with some opinion that my kids have, I often will take the other side just to make them do their homework and be able to defend their position. A good spirited debate is good for the soul.

            As far as Yellowstone. You really don’t need a guide. The roads run around and through everything and there are park hotels throughout the place. There are also a lot of free ranger tours. You can see all the wildlife and scenery on or near the roads. In 3 days we saw grizzly bears, black bear, wolves, coyote, beaver, moose, fox, big horn sheep, elk, prong horn, eagles, otters, muskrat. But be forewarned. When you get out of your car, you are now part of the food chain. A trail we had walked down the day before was closed the next day due to a grizzly killing and eating an elk right on the trail.

    2. Agreed! The saddest part is that parks like Universal are really starting to capitalize on Iger’s greed. Their brand-new Endless Summer resort has rooms starting at $73 per night and 2-room suites starting at $111 per night! Yes, it is considered a “moderate” resort, but you still get early entry into Universal parks and a dedicated bus to take you to and from the parks. They are picking up on “affordable vacation options” where Disney is dropping the ball.

  6. If you took money completely out of the equation, I can’t think of a reason to not stay on property. But if money is in the equation, I can’t think of a reason to stay on property.

      1. So, you are saying that you can find better overall quality accommodations off property than on property? Even including the deluxe resorts? That could very well be true. I’ve never stayed at a real high end 4 star hotel, but I’m guessing they are pretty sweet!