Top 10 Reasons to stay On-Site
(In no particular order)

We are sometimes asked the question “Why Stay on Site…it’s SO much cheaper to stay off-site!”  While years ago it was simply a matter of money and proximity, today it’s not quite so simple. Today I’ll share the top 10 reasons to stay on Disney property!

 Disney Dining Plans

I’m a HUGE fan of the Disney Dining Plan. Most of my clients purchase the Quick Service or Plus Dining Plan. Not only can these plans save you 20-30% off the regular cost of food. Even if you didn’t save that much…or simply break even, my family loves the convenience of these plans.  We don’t have to budget ahead and guess how much we spend, we don’t have to order something cheaper on the menu….we simply order what we are in the mood for and have the credit deducted from our plan!

Magic Bands 

If you are new to Disney, let me share a little bit more with you about how Disney’s Magic Bands work. Prior to your trip you’ll have the opportunity to customize your Magic Band in one of 8 colors (Red, Blue, Green, Pink, Yellow, Orange, Purple or Grey). These are shipped directly to your home about 2-3 weeks prior to your trip.

 Then once you arrive at Walt Disney World, let the fun begin! Your Magic Band will hold your:
  • Room Key
  • Park Ticket
  • Dining Plan Credits
  • Charging Privileges
  • Photopass
  • FastPass+ Access (see below)

These bands are FREE For onsite guuests. I can tell you from personal experience that these bands make your Disney vacation stress free and convenient.

So how do they work? Simple! Everything is stored electronically on your band and you simply tap! You tap to enter your room…you tap to enter the parks…you tap to access your FastPass+ experiences…you tap to use Dining Plan credits…tap, tap, tap! No digging for money or tickets…everything is simply stored on your Magic Band. It’s….well, Magic!


Ok so you got me on this one…FastPass+ is technically available to ALL guests who enter the parks. On-site guests have a very clear advantage though!  If you stay on-site and have tickets linked to your My Disney Experience account, you can book your FastPass+ experiences 60 days in advance!!

So what is FastPass+? It’s a convenient system that allows you to PRE-SELECT 3 attractions per day in advance (in just one park). You select the date and time and once you show up to the attraction, you enter a special line for FastPass+ and have little to no wait.  There are even shows, parades and fireworks to choose from. Once you use all 3, you can even  select more (one at a time) in the parks from your mobile app!

Staying offsite?  You can schedule your FastPass+ in advance, but only 30 days!

Disney Guest Service

Disney is known for their amazing guest service…it’s what keeps guests coming back year after year. Whether it’s at your resort, the parks…even the bus drivers!  Everyone strives to keep up the standard of the world renowned guest service. When staying off site you never know what you might get…especially if you consider renting a home or timeshare.

Free Transportation

That’s right…FREE! It’s a word we don’t often use in conjunction with Disney.  Starting the moment you land at the Orlando International Airport! Disney whisks you away on one of their air conditioned motorcoaches right to your resort…they even grab your bags for you! That’s the great perk called Magical Express and it will bring you back to the airport after your vacation has come to an end.

Not only that but Disney offers FREE transportation from your resort to all the parks, water parks and Downtown Disney. You are on vacation…why worry about driving when Disney will take care of it for you? Buses run every 15-20 minutes non-stop.

 Free Parking

Did you know that if you stay off-property and drive you are looking at $20 a day for parking!! For a week vacation, that adds up super quickly! Plus you’ll have to pay for gas so factor that into your budget too.  Some off-site properties off some type of shuttle but they don’t run consistently meaning you’ll be stuck at the parks all day (no mid-day break, nap or pool time).

Disney does now charge for parking at their resort but not at the parks for on-site guests!

 Extra Magic Hours

Disney offers guests staying on property extra time in the parks.  On select days, resort guests can access one park an hour early while another stays open up to 2 hours later! This is a special benefit just for those staying on Disney Property and can allow you some extra time while the wait times are a little less (usually in the morning hours).

Disney Themeing

No one pays attention to the details like Disney does!  By selecting a Disney property you can stay in a room fit for a Pirate or a Princess….a suite surround by your favorite characters from Cars, Nemo or Lion King…view Giraffes from your balcony and much much more! Disney resorts are unique and offer something for everyone, in every price range!

 Proximity to the Parks

Did you know that Walt Disney World is TWICE the size of the city of Manhattan!? That’s 47 square miles. Traveling within the “world’ can be time consuming, but when you move outside the property, it can take even longer!  Some resorts are even within walking distance to the parks (like Disney’s Contemporary or Beach Club.)

 Itinerary Planning Services

When you book a Disney resort vacation with a Disney Travel Planner (like Living With The Magic Vacations) we can assist with every aspect of your vacation! We offer detailed concierge planning services, at a nominal cost, to assist with your planning needs. Contact us today to learn more!

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