How to Choose Which Walt Disney World Resort Is Right For You in 7 Steps

With over 25 Walt Disney World Resort Hotels to choose from, it can be a little overwhelming when deciding which hotel is right for you. While it really comes down to personal preference as there is no wrong answer, they all offer exceptional service, there are a few easy steps future guests can follow to narrow down the choices and make the selection process less stressful. This is your vacation after all. It should be as relaxing and stress-free as possible.

7. How Many in Your Party?

The first thing to consider is your party size. How many are going on this Disney trip? Two? Four? Eight or more? Knowing your total number of travelers will get you ready for what your options will be. If you’re traveling with a party of four or less, a standard size room with two queen- or full-size beds will do. If there are more in your group, you may need to book more than one room or consider a villa or suite instead. Not every resort has villas and suites so that will help narrow down your choices for larger groups.

6. Are You Cooking or Dining Out?

Big or small, if your party plans on cooking during your stay, you may need the use of a kitchen or kitchenette provided in villas and suites. Large groups planning on taking advantage of the many restaurants on Disney property instead of cooking, can forego the larger spaces and consider getting multiple standard room instead.

5. What’s Your Budget?

Do not go any further until you figure this out. Knowing the maximum you are able to spend on your hotel stay will help narrow down your choices before you start getting too attached to possibilities you can’t afford. If you don’t have a budget, make one. Disney’s Resort Hotels are categorized by size to allow guests to find the right place at the right price. Deluxe Resorts are the most expensive, Moderate Resorts are in the middle, and Value Resorts are the most affordable. When choosing your hotel, remember that by staying at a Value or Moderate resort you may be able to afford a longer stay, even if you can afford a more expensive hotel.

4. Do You Have a Location Preference?

Once your budget is decided on and you know which resorts are still available to you, ask yourself and your party if you prefer to be near a particular Disney park. Resorts are also classified by location as being a Magic Kingdom, Epcot, Disney’ Hollywood Studios, Disney’s Animal Kingdom, or Downtown Disney Area Resort. If you plan on visiting one park more than the others, take a look at the hotel options near that particular park. Maps can be found on the Walt Disney World website.

3. How Much Time Will You Spend at Your Hotel?

The next step when choosing the right Disney Resort Hotel is to decide how much time you’ll spend there. If you’re just looking for a place to sleep and eat, a Value Resort may be for you. If you plan on spending time by the pool, the bar, or would like to return during the day to get some rest, then you can feel justified staying at a more expensive hotel as you’ll be there more. If you do plan on getting some sleep during the day, consider what hotels may attract more kids, which leads to more noise. Some hotels, like the Port Orleans French Quarter, are quieter than others, like the All-Star Movies hotel.

2. What Amenities Are Important To You?

While each Disney resort offers exceptional customer service, the amenities at each location vary, even those in the same price category. If you want to relax in a hot tub, you should stay at a Deluxe or Moderate resort. If you’re looking for larger than life characters that your kids will love, the Value resorts would be your choice. Browse through the website and see what amenities are offered at the hotels left on your list and see which appeal to you most.

1. What’s Your Personal Preference?

That leads us to the last step in our process. Now that you’ve narrowed down your list, what’s your personal preference? With all the practical questions answered, remember that this is supposed to be a fun and magical time for all of you. Especially for those who don’t get to travel to Disney World very often, it can be a trip to remember. Which resort appeals to you most? Looking for a Caribbean theme? A New Orleans theme? A Polynesian theme? There’s something for every taste.

There really is no wrong answer when it comes to choosing the right Disney resort for you and your family. Just think about what you need, what you can afford, and what kind of experience you want, and pick the option that speaks to you. No matter what you choose, you’ll have a magical vacation.

BONUS TIP: Consider planning and booking your next Disney trip with an Authorized Disney Vacation Planner you can trust like Mickey Travels. They’ll help you get the best price for your vacation, share expert advice and their services are totally FREE! It’s genius!


Kristina is a freelance writer and full-time marketer who is a loud and proud Disney fan. Besides Disney Fanatic and How To Disney, she has also written for, Disney Avenue, and XOJane. A frequent visitor to Disney World, she enjoys trying something new each trip and experiencing all Disney has to offer. She lives in New York with her cat, Lizzie.

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