7 Reasons to Stay at a Disney World Resort During the Pandemic
Updated: Oct 8
Can you believe it’s been over 6 months since the COVID pandemic began?? Crazy!
Things are slowly coming back online, although I think its taking longer than any of us imagined.
We are still waiting for Disneyland to reopen. (Come on California!) But Disney World and all it’s magic is back!
Yes, Disney World is open but with some modifications. Things like shorter park hours, less dining options, a park reservation system, and no fast passes.
But the magic is there.
If you are ready to go back to Disney World, where should you stay?
Many of the perks to staying at a Disney World resort hotel, such as extra magic hours and expanded FastPass booking window , are currently unavailable.
So is it still worth staying there?
I’m a huge fan of staying on a Disney property when visiting Disney World, pandemic or no pandemic.
But I’d argue that it’s almost more important than ever to stay on property right now.
Let’s explore my 7 reasons why it is still worth staying at a Disney World Resort hotel during the pandemic.
Generous Cancellation Policy So You Can Book with Confidence
This is the most important reason why booking a Disney Vacation package with the Disney Travel Company is 100% worth it right now: Disney’s generous cancellation policy.
Even before the pandemic their cancellation policy was generous. You have always been able to make changes or cancel your vacation package with no penalty up to 30 days before check in.
Whether we like it or not, things are still a bit in flux right now. It’s possible you’ll need to cancel or reschedule your vacation at any time. If that unthinkable happens, you’ll be covered with Disney’s cancellation policy.
Disney is now waiving any Disney-imposed change or cancellation fees up to the date of check-in for arrivals through December 31, 2020.
That means you could wake up the morning you are supposed to check-in to your Disney resort, decide you don’t feel comfortable traveling, cancel, and get all your money back. How great is that!
This generous policy does not apply to ticket-only purchases, which are non-refundable. If you are considering staying elsewhere and must buy your park tickets separately, keep this cancellation policy in mind when making your decision.
You Are Spending More Time at Your Hotel
The park hours are shorter, which means you’ll be spending more time at your hotel. Don’t you want that hotel to be amazing?
The Disney hotels offer so much to its guests, they are a vacation within themselves. The amazing pools, delicious restaurants, and fun extra amenities.
Parks close earlier now. How about a night under the stars watching a Disney movie instead? This extra special Disney hotel perk is still happening!
Need to get a bite to eat? There are many quick service and table service restaurants available for you to enjoy.
They’ve even expanded their mobile ordering service at some of their hotel table service restaurants. That way you can take your plate to go and enjoy your meal while keeping your distance from others.
And don’t forget about the amazing pools at all the resorts. Ones with water slides, lazy rivers, sand bottoms, and waterspouts to please the kiddos.
You will have no problem filling that extra time you’d typically be spending at the parks.
Confidence in the Cleaning and Social Distancing Policies
Disney has upped their cleaning and sanitizing game. Which is impressive because they already had high cleaning standards to begin with.
At both the parks and resorts you’ll find hand sanitizing stations throughout. They are paying more attention to high traffic areas, cleaning elevators and escalators, handrails, restrooms, and transportation vehicles more frequently.
At the resorts they have modified housekeeping services to enhance cleaning and reduce contact.
Don’t forget about online check-in!
There is no need to go to the front desk when you arrive to your Disney hotel. Check-in online through your My Disney Experience account before you even leave your house. You’ll be notified by the app when your room is ready and where it is the day you arrive.
Head straight to your room when its ready and use your MagicBand or My Disney Experience app to unlock your door.
While this feature has always been available, it’s even more important now to encourage social distancing on your vacation.
The biggest reason why this is a plus for me is Disney is a brand that I know and trust. I trust that they are doing everything they can to ensure my health and safety. That is even more important when traveling in today’s environment.
One of the biggest reasons to stay at a Disney World resort hotel remains: the free transportation.
Disney’s Magical Express will still take you to and from the Orlando airport for free. And you can still take advantage of all the free transportation around the Disney World resort itself.
Don’t worry, they are practicing social distancing by limiting capacity and separating parities on the buses, monorail, and Skyliner.
And don’t forget to be wearing your mask too.
Disney Bubble/Magic Is Still There
I know, I know. This is a bit of a cheesy reason. And a bit over used.
But it remains a reason for me.
I love being in the Disney bubble when I’m on my Disney vacations. I don’t want the magic to end because I’ve left the parks.
That extra level of customer service, cleanliness, and pixie dust continues from the parks to the resorts.
This Disney bubble is more important than ever when your health and safety is on the line.
The Magical Extras
These are another hotel perk that remains from pre-pandemic days.
When you book a vacation package with the Disney Travel Company, you’ll get a Magical Extras savings card and vouchers mailed to you before your trip. This card gives you access to special savings and free activities.
Currently you receive vouchers to play mini golf at either Disney’s Fantasia Gardens Miniature Golf Course or Disney's Winter Summerland Miniature Golf Course (they are alternating which one is open at a time), discounts at various shops and eateries, and discounts on bowling at Splitsville Luxury Lanes.
Another option to fill that extra non-park time!
Free Magic Bands
Get them for free while you still can! Through the end of 2020 you will still receive free MagicBands with a Disney resort stay. This perk goes away come 2021, but for now it remains an attractive reason to stay onsite at a Disney Resort hotel.
There you have it, my top reasons why it is still worth staying at a Disney World Resort hotel.
I am a travel agent and I book everything directly with Disney. That means when you book with me you get all the Disney perks AND the perks of booking with an agent.
I make it easier and more streamlined for you. I will help you navigate all the changes. I will make sure you have everything in place to get into the parks. I will help you find the perfect hotel for your family. I will help you navigate the current dining options.
Oh, and I still have lots of tips for how to travel to Disney World in today’s climate that I would be happy to share with you.
I love my job. I love helping people plan amazing vacations to Disney World and elsewhere. It would be an absolute honor and privilege to be able to help you plan yours.
I am a travel agent with Magical Vacation Planner. I make it easier for you to plan an unforgettable vacation with your family. Click here to schedule a Magical Vacation Discovery Call to learn more and get your free, no-obligation quote.
Or head here to request access to my exclusive Disney Vacation Planning Vault, full of worksheets and resources you can use to plan your next Disney vacation.