Disney Resort Hopping

The Science of Resort Hopping

The average visitor comes to Walt Disney World for the theme parks. There is nothing wrong with that – the Disney Parks are places of unparalleled entertainment, and exceptional beauty and creativity.

However, there is much more to the nearly 50 square miles of Disney World than just the four parks. Notably, Disney World is also the home of more than 20 fabulous resorts, each with it’s own elaborate theme. While many people will experience one resort by staying there, most will never make the time to explore some of the other terrific resorts on the Walt Disney World property.

If you do want to make some time during your vacation for “resort hopping”, here are some ideas to help you hop efficiently!

Split-Stay Vacations

One way to thoroughly experience multiple Walt Disney World resorts is to split your vacation stay between different locations. Staying at a resort is the best way to truly immerse yourself in the experience, since you will have access to all of the resort’s features including the pool areas, shopping, and restaurants. It also allows you to experience a resort at a more leisurely pace that you would be able to if you were only visiting for a half-day or for a meal.

You can take in multiple Disney resort hotels with a bit of planning.
You can take in multiple Disney resort hotels with a bit of planning.

A split-stay can also help you with your decision making if you find yourself torn between multiple resorts when planning your stay. Instead of missing out on one or the other, allow yourself the luxury of experiencing both. This is also a great option for visitors who don’t have the budget for a top-of-the-line resort for the full duration of their vacation. If that is your situation, consider staying in a value or moderate resort for the start of your vacation before finishing your stay with two or three nights at deluxe accommodations.

How To Minimize The Hassles

The disadvantages of splitting your vacation between multiple resorts is the time and hassle of packing up your belongings, traveling to your new resort, checking in, and unpacking all over again. Many people may feel that this is not an efficient use of their vacation time when they could be enjoying the theme parks or other entertainments. However, there are ways to minimize these disadvantages and to work the move into your overall plan for your vacation.

If you know that you will be transitioning between resorts, you can pack and plan to make the move as swift and painless as possible. If you let Disney Bell Services know that you will be switching resorts, they can actually transfer your luggage for you. You may also consider investing in special organizers such as packing cubes that make your packing and unpacking process quick and painless. To avoid waiting in the lobby for your room to be ready, Disney will voice or text message you when your check in is complete, allowing you to explore the resort or enjoy a meal while the preparations are in progress.

Coordinating Resorts And Parks

If your vacation plans permit, changing resorts can even help to smooth the logistics of your visit. For example, you might spend the first four nights of a week-long vacation at an Epcot Area resort, and then spend those days visiting Epcot, Disney’s Hollywood Studios, and Disney’s Animal Kingdom. Then you could spend the final two or three nights of your trip at Disney’s Contemporary Resort, Disney’s Polynesian Resort, or Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort and Spa – all of which allow you great access to the flagship Magic Kingdom theme park via the monorial.

Day Hopping

A split-stay vacation is definitely the best way to experience multiple resorts at length, but day hopping has the advantage of allowing you to experience a greater number of resorts. This alternative also requires less advance planning, which is great for guests who like to go with the flow.  Simple drive or take Disney transportation to the resort you would like to explore for a few hours.  Check out the shopping and dining options, and wander around to enjoy the unique ambiance of the resort.

Visiting a variety of resorts in a day does involve a chunk of travel time, but planning a sensible route around Disney World can help you to maximize your resort time and keep transit to a relative minimum. For example, active visitors could visit any or all of the six Epcot Area resorts that sit on the 0.8 mile shoreline of Crescent Lake. It is also easy to string together any of the Magic Kingdom resorts that sit on the monorail line.

What do you think about the Disney resort hopping?