Comparing Value Resorts

Value Resorts are extremely popular choices, especially with families because, well, they’re cheaper.

But, how do you know which Value Resort is best for your family?

All Star Resorts

There are 3 All Star Resorts in close proximity to each other. Each have their own unique theme and larger than life characters, toys, and more. Because of this, All Star Resorts are especially fun for young guests.

All Star Music

Huge juke box and guitar at Disney's All-Star Music Resort
Photo Credit: DisneyWorld.Disney.Go.Com

All Star Movies

Perdita and Pongo statues overlooking Disney's All-Star Movies Resort
Photo Credit: DisneyWorld.Disney.Go.com

All Star Sports

Giant helmets and lodging at Disney's All-Star Sports Resort
Photo Credit: DisneyWorld.Disney.Go.com

Why they work for your family:

Of all the Value Resorts, the All Stars are the cheapest, making it easier to stay within budget. All Star Movies also has a Family Suite that hold up to 6 guests. Most Value Resorts only accommodate 4 guests per room, so it’s the best option for those guests who want to stay together in one room without blowing their budget.

Why they may not work:

All Star Resorts are 3 different Resorts, but due to their proximity to each other, they share buses with each other. This means that bus lines may be longer and you will experience more stops before heading to and from the parks. Want to take advantage of Free Dining? All Star Movies is oftentimes excluded from this promotion, so if you would like the Dining Plan, one would have to be purchased with your Vacation Package.

Pop Century

Pop Century gives tribute to the decades, from the 1950’s to the 1990’s. Not only will you find fads that were popular during that decade, your favorite Disney characters hide throughout the resort, as well.

Why it works for your family:

Pop Century is undergoing a dramatic renovation, so you will be one of the first guests to stay in the newly renovated room. Pop Century also does not share buses with any other Resort. With buses running every 15 minutes or so, with no stops at other Resorts, you shouldn’t have to wait long before you’re at your desired location.

Why it may not work:

Due to the popularity of this resort, rooms surrounding the pool (especially the Hippy Dippy Pool) may be a bit loud. The pools do close down for the night, but if you or your children like to take a nap in the middle of the day, you may hear music and other guests playing in the pool. I’ve never had an issue with this, but I’ve heard others have before. Also, there are no rooms for parties larger than 4. Families can get adjoining rooms, but 2 rooms will need to be booked, adding to your cost.

Art of Animation

Why it works for your family:

This is the only resort where a Hotel Reservation is required to swim in the Main Pool in the Nemo Section. Why? Swim underwater and you will hear music being played. Art of Animation has 4 distinct “lands”, featuring The Little Mermaid, Lion King, Cars, and Nemo. Art of Animation is also mostly made up of Family Suites that hold 6 guests, with the exception of The Little Mermaid Rooms, which holds 4 guests. The amount of space you get in these Family Suites (which includes a bedroom and a kitchenette) can not be matched at any other Value Resort. Art of Animation also has their own buses, so you will not be sharing with any other resort (even Pop Century – which is located right next door). The Little Mermaid Rooms are comparable to Pop Century prices and size of the room, so for guests of 4 or less, you will experience the best decor of all the Value Resorts.

Why it may not work:

Of all the Value Resorts, Art of Animation is the most expensive. In fact, you may save some money booking a Moderate Resort, like Port Orleans Riverside or Port Orleans French Quarter if you have 4-5 guests (although you will sacrifice room size). Want to take advantage of Free Dining? The Little Mermaid room is oftentimes excluded from this promotion, so if you would like to the Dining Plan, one would have to be purchased with your Vacation Package.

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The View of Pop Century From Art of Animation

Which Value Resort is your favorite?

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2 thoughts on “Comparing Value Resorts

  1. My husband and I have stayed at Pop Century the last two times we visited WDW. We absolutely love it, but haven’t experienced the upgraded rooms yet. They look nice, but also feel so clinical and cold. I know that stark white is the new thing in hotels, but it just doesn’t look inviting to me.

    With the exception of Art of Animation, all the value resorts could use more of a Disney touch within the actual room. Aside from the curtains between the bathroom sink and sleeping area, and a single framed, themed print on the wall…there’s not a whole lot that makes me feel like I’m IN Disney.

    That being said, we don’t spend a lot of time in the hotel. We are “go all day” people and really only spend time in the room to sleep!

    We are planning a trip with another couple for next September, and were pricing out different rooms. We found that the Lion King Suites look AWESOME and would be our “best case scenario” rooms (while still being within value resorts), but for literally $2000 less ($1000 per couple) we could get separate rooms at an All-Star resort.

    I’m not stoked about the tired rooms of All Star Movies, and I have already stayed there before, but for the price difference, we can’t be picky! That’s the difference of plane tickets and souvenirs!

    One last thing – I love that Pop Century and Art of Animation are connected by that lovely bridge. It makes for a great “day off” from the parks, to spend the morning walking through the hotel grounds looking at the huge statues, then strolling across the bridge and doing the same thing at the other hotel! Plus, my husband and I went back to the bridge one night for a romantic evening stroll, too. 🙂

    Great post comparing these resorts! I would love to see one on the moderate resorts – we have never stayed at a moderate, but it’s in our plans to check out Caribbean Beach next time we go solo!

  2. Awesome comment!

    We’ve stayed a Pop Century 2 years ago and we will be back next September when all the updated rooms are finished. I agree. The walls need something besides the bright white, but I love the addition of the murphy bed and the look of the new bathrooms. The storage they added is going to be a game changer in my family!

    The All-Stars do need a refresh. I’m hoping that will come next…hello? No coffee maker? LOL. But, like you, we aren’t in the rooms much and we only come back to sleep and possibly swim, so we’re happy booking a cheaper room, even if it isn’t top notch.

    But, to be honest, the reason we stay at Pop over the All Stars is the bus situation. To not have stops along the way and the second option of hopping on the Art of Animation bus, if Pop is too long, is a big deal to us. Again, there are no multiple stops and since it’s right next door to Pop, it’s not that far away. I’d rather use that time walking across the bridge than standing on that bus! I tend to prefer Art of Animation’s food court to Pop’s, too, so we eat at AOA and then walk back to our room at Pop. I feel like I get the best of both worlds that way. One of these days, I’ll book a room at Art of Animation, but the amount of time we spend in the room doesn’t really justify the cost right now. We’ll get there one day, though. It’s definitely on my bucket list.

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