Book Your Resort

CHAPTER 1

CHAPTER TWO

BACK TO YOUR DASHBOARD

Chapter 1

That trip you've been rolling over in your mind? It's time to make it happen, for real this time. If you're like me, you get overwhelmed when you think of your trip all at once. What most people don't realize is the biggest step - booking your trip - is actually the easiest.

Some of you may have already booked your trip, and that's okay. There may be some things in this chapter that could be useful to you, like setting up your My Disney Experience account. If not, click through to Chapter Two.

You ready? Start by watching the video below where I review everything in this chapter. If you have a sleeping babe on you, you can skip the video and read on. Whatever works for you, my friend.

Love, Dana

Looks best fullscreen!

Chapter 1 Video: Booking Your Resort

SHOW 2022/23 calendar

It makes sense that "when's the best time to visit Disney World?" is a popular question. The answer is: it depends.

It comes down to three factors: crowd levels, weather, and festivals/holidays. 

Our family likes the spring and fall, mostly for the weather and EPCOT's festivals. To avoid crowds, we stay away the week of Thanksgiving + the week of Christmas.

To see all of these factors in one place, check out my calendar below. I also love the traditional crowd calendar from Undercover Tourist.


01.

Decide When to Visit

Average High/Low Temp: 79°/65°

Average Rainfall: 4 days/month

Most crowded:
September 3rd-5th

Least crowded:
September 6-30th

Events:  8th: Disney+ Day, Mickey's Not-So-Scary Halloween Party and EPCOT Food + Wine con't

SEPTEMBER 2022

Average High/Low Temp: 63°/50°

Average Rainfall: 4 days/month

Most crowded:
November 20-27th

Least crowded:
November 1-10th

Events: MVMCP starts Nov 8th, Food + Wine Festival ends Nov 19th, Thanksgiving Nov 24th 

NOVEMBER 2022

Average High/Low Temp: 82°/63°

Average Rainfall: 5 days/month

Most crowded:
December 17th-31st

Least crowded:
December 1st-16th

Events: MVMCP until Dec 22nd, Christmas + New Years Eve

DECEMBER 2022

Average High/Low Temp: 73°/60°

Average Rainfall: 5 days/month

Most crowded:
Weekends + Oct 31st

Least crowded:
October 12-28th

Events: EPCOTs 40th on Oct 1st, Mickey's Not-So-Scary Party until 31st, EPCOT Food + Wine

OCTOBER 2022

2022 Calendar

Average High/Low Temp: 71°/52°

Average Rainfall: 6 days/month

Most crowded:
January 1st-9th

Least crowded:
January 17-27th

Events: runDisney Weekend (5-8th), EPCOT Festival of the Arts starts (13th). SKYLINER CLOSED 22nd-29th

January 2023

2023 Calendar

Average High/Low Temp: 80°/65°

Average Rainfall: 7 days/month

Most crowded:
March 11th-31st 

Least crowded:
March 1-10th

Events: Spring Break season starts (11th)

March 2023

Average High/Low Temp: 86°/63°

Average Rainfall: 7 days/month

Most crowded:
April 1-17th

Least crowded:
April 18-28th

Events: Easter Sunday (9th), runDisney weekend (13-16th)

APRIL 2023

Average High/Low Temp: 75°/54°

Average Rainfall: 7 days/month

Most crowded:
February 18-26th

Least crowded:
February 1st-10th

Events: EPCOT Festival of the Arts ends (20th) President's Day (20th) Princess Half Marathon (23-26th)

February 2023

Average High/Low Temp: 72°/58°

Average Rainfall: 4 days/month

Most crowded:
May 19-21, May 26th-31st

Least crowded:
May 1-12th

Events: Mother's Day (14th)

May 2023

Average High/Low Temp: 80°/68°

Average Rainfall: 4 days/month

Most crowded:
Weekends

Least crowded:
None

Events: Independence Day, Events TBD

JULY 2023

Average High/Low Temp: 82°/69°

Average Rainfall: 5 days/month

Most crowded:
August 1st-6th

Least crowded:
August 7st-31st

Events: TBD

AUGUST 2023

Average High/Low Temp: 79°/66°

Average Rainfall: 5 days/month

Most crowded:
Weekends

Least crowded:
None

Events: TBD

JUNE 2023

2023 Calendar

Average High/Low Temp: 79°/65°

Average Rainfall: 4 days/month

Most crowded:
September 2nd-4th

Least crowded:
September 6-30th

Events: Labor Day (4th), Events TBD

SEPTEMBER 2023

Average High/Low Temp: 63°/50°

Average Rainfall: 4 days/month

Most crowded:
November 19-27th

Least crowded:
November 1-10th

Events: Thanksgiving (23rd) Events TBD

NOVEMBER 2023

Average High/Low Temp: 82°/63°

Average Rainfall: 5 days/month

Most crowded:
December 16th-31st

Least crowded:
December 1st-15th

Events: Christmas + New Years Eve, Events TBD

DECEMBER 2023

Average High/Low Temp: 73°/60°

Average Rainfall: 5 days/month

Most crowded:
Weekends, Oct 6th-9th + Oct 31st

Least crowded:
October 16-30th

Events: Halloween, Events TBD

OCTOBER 2023

2023 Calendar

If you're like the millions of families visiting Walt Disney World from out-of-state, you need a place to stay. There are two options: what Disney-goers refer to as "on-site", meaning at a resort owned by Disney + select other hotels or "off-site". This would include hotels in the Orlando area, or an Airbnb.

Choosing the best resort for your family is a balancing act based on location, availability, and budget. Ask yourself:

What parks are we most excited about?
How much do we plan on spending?
What size room do we want?

ACCESS TO
EARLY ENTRY

02.

BETTER Dining Reservations

buy individual lightning lanes early

Disney resort + select hotels guests are allowed in the parks 30 minutes before official park opening, everyday. Find a list of which resorts + attractions are included here.

Guests staying at a Disney hotel, Swan, Dolphin, or Shades of Green can book Individual LLs at 7am. Everyone else has to wait until park opening - by then they could be gone!

Everyone can make dining reservations 60 days before their stay. Resort guests can book up to 70 days before.

I'm going to encourage you to stay at one of the resorts on Walt Disney World property. Why?

For us, we think about location above all else. Being able to walk back to your resort after a long night of fun + fireworks is a luxury. Taking the boat to Hollywood Studios with a hot coffee in my hand is always a highlight. Having other transportation options other than buses is just...well, nice.

To see all the transportation options for each resort, DOWNLOAD THE TRANSPORTATION BUNDLE

Location, location, location.

Walt Disney World Resorts

Disney World Resorts are separated into four categories: value, moderate, deluxe and deluxe villas.

MODERATE

DELUXE

DELUXE VILLAS

Value

ANOTHER BENEFIT OF STAYING DELUXE: On select nights, guests staying at a Deluxe Resort have access to Extended Evening Hours. Learn more here!

Value

MODERATE

DELUXE

DELUXE VILLAS

DELUXE VILLAS

MODERATE

DELUXE

Value

Animal Kingdom Lodge
Beach Club
BoardWalk Inn
Contemporary
Grand Floridian
Polynesian Village
Riviera Resort
Saratoga Springs
Wilderness Lodge
Yacht Club

DELUXE VILLAS

Value

MODERATE

DELUXE

DELUXE VILLAS

DELUXE

MODERATE

Value

Animal Kingdom Villas - Jambo House + Kidani Village
Bay Lake Tower at the Contemporary
Beach Club Villas
BoardWalk Inn Villas
Boulder Ridge + Copper Creek Villas at Wilderness Lodge
Riviera Resort
Old Key West Resort
Polynesian Villas + Bungalows
Saratoga Springs
Villas at the Grand Floridian

DELUXE VILLAS

ANOTHER BENEFIT OF STAYING DELUXE: On select nights, guests staying at a Deluxe Resort have access to Extended Evening Hours. Learn more here!

My top resort picks

WHAT TO KNOW

Did you know Disney travel agents are completely free? I've learned a LOT about travel agents over the past 2 years and let me tell you: there is a travel agent for everyone. Here are some things you'll want to know before reaching out to an agent.

Should You Use a Disney Travel Agent?

03.

Things you'll need to know before requesting a free travel quote

  • Your approximate budget
  • Dates you're considering
  • How many people are going
  • If you need a room, tickets, or both
  • Any interest in special events or other celebrations

BACK

04.

It's time to make this real! There are 3 options to secure your trip: a room-only reservation, a vacation package, or using Disney Vacation Club points. Here's how they compare:

Book Your Resort. Like, Really Book It.

Save around 30%

Due in full + no cancellations

Can't use a free travel agent

Park tickets are purchased separately

Rent DVC Points

my favorite

Deposit: 1st night's cost + balance due at check in

Tickets can be added later or through a third-party

Can be made up to 499 days beforehand


Room-only
Reservation

1

A way to save even more...

You'll see a section on every DVC broker site called "dedicated" or "confirmed" reservations. These are reservations that have already been booked, but for whatever reason can't be filled.

These are locked in and guaranteed with the room and dates aaaand come at even more of a discount!

Better for last minute trips, or if you're more flexible with your travel dates.

Looks best fullscreen!

Includes resort stay + theme park tickets

Depost: $200
Balance due 30 days before

Lots of flexibility when it comes to modifying/cancellations



2

Vacation Package

MOST POPULAR

3

Bonus Video: Renting DVC Points

Room, ticket + vacation packages are available for all of 2023.

You can book room-only reservations up to 499 days before by calling Disney directly at (407) 939-5277. Or have a travel agent book it for you!

If you want to rent DVC points - my favorite way - you can book that up to 11 months before you want to visit.


 In addition to a park ticket, you'll need a reservation to enter the park of your choosing. Check Walt Disney World's theme park reservation calendar here. They can sell out for certain parks on popular days, so make sure there's plenty of availability before you commit to your stay!

If you're booking last minute...

Checklist

CHAPTER 1

Decide When to visit

REQUEST DVC POINT RENTAL

CREATE A MY DISNEY EXPERIENCE ACCOUNT

BOOK THE ROOM!

yes

no

You're on your way to creating the vacation of your dreams, I can feel it! This first chapter takes a lot of brain power - you got this!

continue to chapter 2

CHOOSE YOUR RESORT

USING TRAVEL AGENT?

yes

no

Have you cross-referenced your dates?

Be sure to check Disney's park reservation calendar before you commit to anything. We'll cover more of this in Chapter 2, but park reservations are needed in addition to your park ticket. On very popular days - like Halloween - they can sell out for certain parks.

To really triple-check your dates, do a quick search for: "Disney World events during (enter month)." I've been on trips where I've completely missed that it was Veteran's Day, or wondered why are there so many cheerleaders at our hotel?? Make sure you know what's happening the days of your visit so you can prepare.

Does travel insurance make sense for you?

If the past few years have taught us anything it's to expect the unexpected. Travel insurance may be a good idea if you're worried about being grounded due to snow, hurricanes, etc. I like this website if I feel like I need insurance.



FURTHER

reading