Considering a stay at a Value resort at Disney World? Not sure which one is right for you? We polled the Fairytale Journeys Travel agents to find out the best Value hotel at Disney World!
What is a Value Resort at Disney World?
Of Disney’s three hotel tiers, the Value hotels generally offer the best bang for your buck. These resorts provide high-level, Disney-quality accommodations at a lower price point, a perfect choice for travelers on a budget. All guests of Disney Value hotels receive Early Entry into all theme parks every day of the week as well as access to Individual Lightning Lanes at 7am. Guests who do not stay at an official Disney World hotel must wait until official park opening time to enter and to make Individual Lightning Lane selections.
Disney’s Value Resorts include the All-Star Resorts (All-Star Music, All-Star Movies, and All-Star Sports, Art of Animation and Pop Century. (Fort Wilderness Campground could be considered a value resort but since it consists of campsites and not hotel rooms, we won’t include it here.)
All-Star Movies, All-Star Music, and All-Star Sports Resort
Coming in last on the FTJ favorites list are the All-Star Resorts. But don’t let their position on the list fool you into thinking that they aren’t great hotels! All three hotels have very similar layouts. Disney recently refurbished All-Star Movies and Music and the All-Star Sports Resort is currently undergoing room renovations. The new rooms will have a queen size bed and a queen size Murphy bed that pulls down over a table and chairs. Each hotel has a large food court, multiple pools, and over-the-top theming that all Disney fans can enjoy. Because of their large size, fun themes, and low price point, the All-Star Resorts are often the best resorts for large sports or school groups.
All-Star Music Resort also has Family Suites which sleep 6 and consist of a queen sofa bed, queen Murphy bed, 2 bathrooms, a kitchenette, and a separate bedroom with its own queen bed. It’s a perfect set up for larger families!
While these resorts have a lot of positive features, the downside is the transportation options available. Located a bit further from the theme parks, the only transportation besides your own car or a ride share service is a Disney bus. Bus lines can get long in the morning and at park close so be prepared to leave for your destination 60-90 minutes ahead of time.
Art of Animation Resort
In the runner-up position is the Art of Animation Resort, specifically the Little Mermaid-themed rooms. Art of Animation is mostly made up of Family Suites, similar to those at All-Star Music. Family Suites at Art of Animation are themed to the Lion King, Cars, and Finding Nemo. The Finding Nemo section is home to the Big Blue Pool, the largest pool on Disney property.
The Little Mermaid rooms in particular though, are FTJ agent’s favorites at this resort! They are adorably themed, with 2 queen beds and lots of under the sea touches throughout.
The Little Mermaid section has its own pool, but guests in these rooms have access to everything at the Art of Animation Resort including all pools, a huge food court and the largest arcade on property. But one of the best things about this resort is its location on the Skyliner. While buses will take guests to Magic Kingdom and Animal Kingdom, the Skyliner is the main mode of transportation to Epcot and Hollywood Studios. This gondola system is quick and easy. And even if lines look long in the mornings or at park close, they usually move quickly!
And the WINNER is…
Pop Century Resort
Pop Century wins the prize for the best value resort at Disney World! Pop Century is another Skyliner resort, but it edges out Art of Animation because of another issue with location. As I described before, Art of Animation has both family suites and standard hotel rooms. However, the standard hotel rooms at Art of Animation are further away from the Skyliner, main lobby and dining location. On the other hand, Pop Century has a Preferred Room category that is just steps away from the Skyliner station.
The decor around this resort is truly larger than life and fun for the whole family. Guests can choose from buildings themed to the 1950s, 60s, 70s, 80s, and 90s, so there is great nostalgia here for everyone. Rooms consist of a queen bed and a queen size Murphy bed that pulls down over a table and chairs, which is a great seating option for a quick breakfast in your room before hitting the parks.
There are three pools at Pop Century, an arcade, pool bar, and a decent food court. However, at Pop you are also within walking distance to the food court at Art of Animation, doubling your dining options!
Which Value Resort is Right for You?
If you are looking for a great hotel on a budget, any of these Value resorts would be great options! For more help deciding on which hotel is right for you, or with any other part of planning your Disney trip, reach out to an expert travel advisor at Fairytale Journeys Travel.
Amy lives in the suburbs of Chicago and stays busy with 4 young children and planning as much travel as school and activities schedules allow! She loves to experience new places with her family, but her favorite place is Walt Disney World. She also loves helping others plan vacations with as little stress as possible so that they can just focus on the fun!