Disney Deluxe Resort vs Moderate vs Value

Large windows outside at Animal Kingdom Lodge a Disney Vacation Club resort at Disney World
There are so many exciting choices to make when planning a Disney Parks vacation. You have to pick where you’ll head specifically. For example, Disneyland Resort in California or Walt Disney World Resort in Florida if you’re traveling in the United States. Then, the time of year you visit brings different offerings to enjoy. The holidays are a delight and spring brings a flower festival to Epcot. If you pick Disney World, there are many official Disney resort hotels to choose from. With so much to do around the parks, you may not spend much time at your resort. However, the theming, location, amenities and dining at your hotel can really enhance your trip. To start with, it’s good to consider differences between a Disney deluxe resort vs moderate vs value. The Disney resorts are categorized into these three tiers. The deluxe, moderate and value tiers can help you stay within your budget or find all of the ways to pamper yourself on your trip. Any trip to Disney is magical. The different resort tiers help you plan the magic that’s right for your trip. Let’s chat about the different kinds of resorts at Disney World and what you might come to expect in each tier of hotels.

Disney World Resort Hotel Guest Perks

It’s good to know that staying at any Disney resort hotel comes with some pretty exciting perks. Early theme park entry, when offered, is available for all Disney resort hotel guests, no matter the tier. All resort guests also receive complimentary theme park parking and special extras like having their purchases delivered back to their hotel when available. Most deluxe resorts come with additional amenities and perks. As of 2022, deluxe resort guests are able to take advantage of additional evening hours as well. This means if you stay at a deluxe resort, your park ticket lets you stay and play after the park has closed to day guests on certain dates. This is a valuable perk, especially at Epcot when available, as it allows eligible guests to sign up for a third virtual queue for Guardians of the Galaxy: Cosmic Rewind. The ability to access this additional virtual queue may provide your only chance to ride if you arrive later in the day.

Disney Deluxe Resort vs Moderate vs Value

Aside from price which we cover in detail below, some main differences between deluxe, moderate and value resorts are the offerings, architecture, dining options and quality of the rooms. When we say quality here we’re talking about how much space a room has and how nice or detailed the furniture in the room might be. Value rooms can usually be quite efficient with spacing. For larger accommodations, there are far more options in the deluxe range and at Disney Vacation Club resorts. All Disney hotels are clean and kept well. That’s just the Disney way. Here we’re illustrating some examples of the differences you may find between resort tiers.

Theming at Disney Deluxe vs Moderate vs Value Resorts

Upon arriving at a deluxe resort vs moderate vs value, you’ll notice some differences right away. Value resorts all follow a similar model and layout of a basic main lobby where shopping and dining are located. The main pool is usually just behind the lobby. In the moderate level, the resorts are a bit more unique and individual with their architecture. When you arrive at a deluxe resort, you’ll know it. The exterior is usually big, welcoming and paints of picture of a time or style. For example, pulling up to Disney’s Wilderness Lodge takes you out of the real world and into the story of a national park lodge of the past. Over at a value resort, the bed frames will probably look much different than something nicer you might find at a deluxe. The value All Star resorts are vibrant and colorful but the theme is pursued in a very simple way. Oversized items that represent the theme, like characters or pop culture visuals, line the properties. Meanwhile, somewhere like the Polynesian Resort, a deluxe property, you will find rich landscaping that supports the theme and authentic representations of the region on and in the buildings. In moderate resorts, like Port Orleans, you will find a theme followed through in detail but on a less grand scale.

Deluxe vs Moderate vs Value Pools at Disney

Another difference between the resort categories is how nice the pool will be. All resorts have big pools but some are larger, and more exciting, than others. Resorts in the deluxe tier have the best pool and water play areas with slides, rock sculptures and exciting theme integrations in many cases. At Disney’s Yacht and Beach Club deluxe resort you can enjoy a full day at the Stormalong Bay pool. The water complex has a small lazy river, a sand bottom pool, waterfalls and more. At Disney’s Coronado Springs Resort, a moderate property, there is a big main pool with a winding waterslide around a pyramid. The value resorts have large pools with more simple theming, still providing a fun atmosphere for families. Most resorts in all categories also have quiet pools aside from the main one.

Disney Deluxe vs Moderate vs Value Restaurants

At deluxe resorts, you’ll find some of the best restaurants at Walt Disney World like Ohana at Disney’s Polynesian Village Resort, Beaches & Cream Soda Shop at Disney’s Beach Club Resort and California Grill at Disney’s Contemporary Resort. Even guests staying at other resorts love to book dining reservations at restaurants like these. You’ll find exquisite menu items, incredible firework views, amazing interiors and character meals among deluxe resort dining. This is in addition to basic quick service offerings. At moderate resorts there are usually quick service and sit down restaurants on the property. Depending on the resort, you may find a hidden gem like Toledo on top of the Coronado Springs Gran Destino Tower building. Both Port Orleans resorts have nice lounge settings with live entertainment. Disney’s Caribbean Beach Resort has some of the best food options at a moderate resort with quick service, sit down and lounge style dining with island flare. Value resorts offer basic dining with approachable menu items in a quick service style. Think food court style and burgers, chicken nuggets and fries with soda fountains.

Disney Deluxe Resort vs Moderate vs Value Locations and Transportation

Many of the deluxe resorts are within walking distance of the parks or a very short bus ride away. Location can be everything when you want to make the most of your vacation day. Where your resort is on the property also determines the kinds of views the property has. Over at Bay Lake Tower at Disney’s Contemporary Resort, you can book a theme park view and watch the firework show from your room. Each resort varies but overall deluxe resorts usually have more to offer in terms of location. Transportation offered at your resort is very much inspired by where the location is. You’ll find that resorts on the water close to Magic Kingdom will offer their own boat transport for guests. The same applies to Epcot area resorts on the water. There is also a monorail line that goes around to Magic Kingdom area resorts and connects to Epcot. The Disney Skyliner reaches all resort tiers with a station at Disney’s Caribbean Beach Resort, Disney’s Pop Century Resort and Disney’s Riviera Resort.

Disney Deluxe Resort vs Moderate vs Value Pricing

Below we’re going over resort tier details and vacations prices in the value, moderate and deluxe categories. Remember the time of year has an affect on the price of a resort stay and tickets at Disney. We’re pricing out the summer of 2023 which is a popular time to visit but not among the priciest.

Value Hotel Disney Vacation Cost

For those camping, you’ll find campsites are one of the lower priced options at Disney World. These technically aren’t listed as a value resort on the Disney World website but, instead, listed their own category due to their uniqueness. Value Disney World resorts include:

Disney’s All-Star Movies Resort

Disney’s All-Star Music Resort

Disney’s All-Star Sports Resort

Disney’s Art of Animation Resort

Disney’s Pop Century Resort

The Campsites at Disney’s Fort Wilderness Resort

There are ways to plan a cheaper Disney World vacation. It all starts with a value tier hotel. A weeklong stay from June 12th through 19th in 2023 at Disney’s All-Star Music Resort would cost $1,448.26 total. With 7 day, 1 park tickets for 2 adults and 2 children, the price changes to $3,819.35. If those are park hopper tickets, the price goes up to $$4,181.43. Add Memory Maker, access to photos Disney Photopass photographers take throughout your trip, and you’re looking at $4,350.43.

Moderate Hotel Disney Vacation Cost

Moderate hotels still offer a decent price while providing more intriguing offerings. Moderate Disney World resorts include:

Disney’s Caribbean Beach Resort

Disney’s Coronado Springs Resort

Disney’s Port Orleans Resort – French Quarter

Disney’s Port Orleans Resort – Riverside

The Cabins at Disney’s Fort Wilderness Resort

We’ll price out these basics in early 2023 and see what a starting point is for a middle of the range resort at a moderately busy time of year. For a weeklong stay for two adults and two children, from February 6th through the 13th, staying at Disney’s Port Orleans Resort Riverside, including four, six day park hopper tickets the price is $5,063.80. A weeklong stay from June 12th through 19th in 2023 at Disney’s Caribbean Beach Resort would cost $2,466.00 total. With 7 day, 1 park tickets for 2 adults and 2 children, the price changes to $4,837.09. If those are park hopper tickets, the price goes up to $5,199.17. Add Memory Maker, access to your trip photos, and you’re looking at $5,368.17.

Deluxe Hotel Disney Vacation Cost

Deluxe Walt Disney World resort hotels are the crown jewels of the vacation destination. You can expect fabulous locations close to the parks, neat transportation options like monorails and the Disney Skyliner and wonderful dining right at your resort. Deluxe resorts are also more likely to have upscale amenities like spas or spa services and firework cruise experiences. Many resorts in this tier have firework views themselves. Deluxe Disney World resorts include:

Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge

Disney’s Beach Club Resort

Disney’s BoardWalk Inn

Disney’s Contemporary Resort

Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort & Spa

Disney’s Polynesian Village Resort

Disney’s Wilderness Lodge

Disney’s Yacht Club Resort

For a weeklong stay from June 12th through 19th in 2023 at Disney’s Beach Club Resort, the price would be $4522.53 total. With 7 day, 1 park tickets for 2 adults and 2 children, the price changes to $6,893.59. If those are park hopper tickets, the price goes up to $7,255.67. Add Memory Maker and you’re looking at $7,424.67.

Disney Vacation Club Resorts

The Disney timeshare can provide an excellent value on deluxe tier resort hotel stays. Disney Vacation Club Resorts are all located at deluxe hotel properties. Some have their own buildings, like the tall, round beauty next to Disney’s Contemporary Resort that’s called Bay Lake Tower. Others have a special place within a deluxe resort like Copper Creek Villas at Disney’s Wilderness Lodge. DVC Members get all of the perks offered to deluxe resort guests. Here is a complete list of Disney Vacation Club Resorts. The asterisks note resorts located outside of Walt Disney World.
Disney’s Animal Kingdom Villas
Aulani, Disney Vacation Club Villas*
Bay Lake Tower at Disney’s Contemporary Resort
Disney’s Beach Club Villas
Disney’s BoardWalk Villas
Boulder Ridge Villas at Disney’s Wilderness Lodge
Copper Creek Villas and Cabins at Disney’s Wilderness Lodge
The Villas at Disney’s Grand Californian Hotel*
The Villas at Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort
Disney’s Hilton Head Island Resort*
Disney’s Old Key West Resort
Disney’s Polynesian Villas & Bungalows
Disney’s Riviera Resort
Disney’s Saratoga Springs Resort
Disney’s Vero Beach Resort*

Disney Vacation Club Resale

Disney Vacation Club can provide a better value when compared to renting Disney hotel rooms each year. With resale, or buying a contract from a Member who is selling their contract, it’s possible to save thousands. DVC resale contracts can come at much more affordable prices and provide nearly the same experience as buying directly from Disney. Resale owners aren’t eligible for DVC discounts or to attend special events but they stay in the same fabulous rooms and enjoy the same excellent amenities. Deluxe hotels offer so much and becoming a DVC Member is a way to enjoy them each year.

Non Disney Hotels at Walt Disney World with Perks

There are some hotels on Walt Disney World Resort property that are owned or operated by another company. Within those, some are able to offer their guests some of the perks Disney resorts get like certain extended park hour opportunities. The following resorts may be in that category depending on the kind of perk:

Walt Disney World Dolphin Hotel

Walt Disney World Swan Hotel

Walt Disney World Swan Reserve

Shades of Green on Walt Disney World® Resort

B Resort & Spa Lake Buena Vista

DoubleTree Suites by Hilton Orlando

Hilton Orlando Buena Vista Palace

Hilton Orlando Lake Buena Vista

Holiday Inn Orlando

Wyndham Garden Lake Buena Vista

Wyndham Lake Buena Vista

Four Seasons Resort Orlando

Signia by Hilton Orlando Bonnet Creek

Waldorf Astoria Orlando

Drury Plaza Hotel Orlando Lake Buena Vista

DVC Resale Experts Can Help

If you love Disney vacations, a DVC resale contract might be the best option for you. DVC Resale Experts is a licensed real estate broker with a team that specializes in selling resale Disney Vacation Club. The Experts are former Disney Vacation Club Guides with decades of experience and provide Disney quality service. You’ll be thrilled you have one of our licensed real estate professionals to guide you through the process and answer your questions along the way. Take a look at our current resale DVC listings for pricing and availability or get in touch today for more information. Our blog is a great resource filled with lots of information about buying and selling Disney Vacation Club Memberships. You can always reach out for answers to your specific questions about DVC resale.
Disney Blogger Nicole and Disney CEO Bob Iger

Sparkly Nicole

Nicole is a native Floridian who attended the University of Central Florida and decided to call the land of theme parks home. She’s been sharing magical tips, tricks and Orlando travel and tourism favorites online for over a decade.

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