View Full Version : Stay Free or Pay?
03-22-2007, 12:32 PM
It seems an obvious choice, right? Who doesn't love free? But I need expert opinions.
My DH's coworker is planning his family's first (and what he thinks will be only) WDW vacation. He can stay free at a Marriott, because he travels frequently and has enough Marriott points. But my DH told him:
DH: Save the points! Pay to stay on property.
Coworker: Really? Is it worth it? (skeptical tone)
DH: Yes! Worth it! It's WDW and you need to do it right. Call and ask my wife. She's the expert.
So I'm thinking "I trained that man well!" But I'm also thinking "Hmm free stay?" I'm hesitant to tell someone to pay for what they could get for free. Think of the money he saves to spend elsewhere. But at the same time, staying on property (I would recommend a moderate, probably FQ) is so great that I hate to send him to the Marriott (which I'm sure is great, but not on-site). So, experts, what would you do?
03-22-2007, 12:35 PM
Stay on WDW Property!! There's absolutely nothing like it. You're really 'IN' Disney when you stay at one of their resorts. Your friend can always use the Marriott points for something else - but if this is the first and possibly only WDW vacation he should do Disney 'right' and stay onsite! :mickey:
03-22-2007, 12:44 PM
I also think for a first and possible only trip they should stay in Disney too. They will miss to much if they don't. Just the EMHs alone make it worth it. :thumbsup:
03-22-2007, 12:47 PM
I agree...for their first (and potentially only) trip to WDW, they will get the most out of the experience by staying on property. They can use the Marriott points anytime, anywhere.
03-22-2007, 12:56 PM
If he thinks he'll need to rent a car to stay off-site, that alone may be the determining factor. Disney transportation is FREE :mickey: Also, with EMH to consider, I would definitely recommend on-site. :mickey:
If he's even remotely considering the DDP, they'll have to be on-site to use it.
03-22-2007, 01:12 PM
Another vote for staying on property. I assume that the Marriott points aren't going anywhere and can always be used to stay free somewhere else.:mickey:
03-22-2007, 01:38 PM
:mickey: It's unanimous- Stay at WDW!
03-22-2007, 01:45 PM
On site - no question about it! :mickey:
03-22-2007, 01:48 PM
Fantastic! I'm not alone. It really is so much better to be on-site, and yes he can use his points for another vacation. Now to decide if I'm better off sending him to POFQ or suggesting he spend even a little more and try WL. I don't want him to get sticker shock and shy away from on-site, but I think he may really like WL. There's a lot to like at POFQ, too.
03-22-2007, 01:48 PM
I'm sure the Marriott is beautiful, but it's not Disney. For a first and possibly only trip - ON SITE all the way! As far as which resort, see what appeals to them and what the budget will be and go from there. You can't go wrong with a Disney resort!
03-22-2007, 02:38 PM
I never experienced the "Magic" till we stayed onsite.
As my BIL always says... If your gonna be a bear be a GRIZZLY ....
btw I'm REAL good at spending other people's money...lol
03-22-2007, 03:10 PM
On site you Silly Goose! OK..I'm a little punchy today, its been a long day..but I would always pay to be on site. It would feel too sad to go trekking to a Marriott at the end of the day. Not worth it to me!
03-22-2007, 03:15 PM
Stay on property! When in Rome....the experience is not the same when you stay off property. The few times that I have stayed off property, I felt like I was left out of a lot of things:
1. Disney transportation.
2. Extra hours.
3. The unique wake-up calls...stayed at Marriott, they don't have them like WDW.
4. Resort TV...channel surfing is nothing if you do not have Resort TV with the Top 7 countdown, DVC, etc.
5. The CMs and the service.
6. Disney magic 24/7!
Just food for thought...
03-25-2007, 12:33 AM
Maybe they could split their stay. Stay at Marriott for the first part, then stay at Disney. That way they save a little money, but then they'll realize the big difference at the end.
03-25-2007, 02:35 AM
I also vote for stay on-site for a first timer...heck I have a hard time thinking I would ever stay off-site myself!!
03-25-2007, 04:34 AM
Does your friend have any Starwood points from Westins/Sheratons/Four Points/Ws etc. (I only ask because oftentimes people stock up both) because if he has enough for even a couple free nights he could use them at the Swan or the Dolphin and get most of the benefits of staying onsite (no Magical Express or DDP) and still use points for his stay.
03-25-2007, 08:24 AM
It's been several years, so the Marriott Rewards program may have changed, but here's what I did:
I looked into using my rewards points for a free stay, but Orlando is a resort area, so the hotels require more points per night than in other places.
Instead, I was able to cash in points for WDW tickets - a terrific savings :number1: I'd recommend checking to see if this is a possibility.
I've stayed at the Courtyard and it was nice, but it could have been anywhere in the world and looked and felt exactly the same. My vote would be for onsite, WL if possible.
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