Going on vacation to Orlando can be a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. Having a meet and greet with Mickey and Minnie Mouse or even having funds for the thrilling rollercoasters can give you a vacation that is perfect on many levels.
Of course, when you are looking at an Orlando vacation, you will have many things to consider, and one of these will be your accommodation. Where you stay matters. So, when you are choosing a resort, what should you consider?
Getting to Grips With Your Budget
Work out just how much you have to spend
Start looking at your budget, and start establishing how to get the best value for money. Knowing what you can spend and knowing what you want to spend is essential. When you can establish what you have to spend, you can then start narrowing down your list of potentials.
A budget for resort accommodation will need to be factored in so you can see just what is on offer. For example, the number of dining options available will affect the price and budget you are working with, as ill the location and the star rating.
You may well find that certain resorts will cost more because they offer plenty of eateries, restaurants, and bars on site. Others may focus on other things such as outdoor waterparks and swimming pools. Getting to grips with your budget and finding out what you want in a resort will surely make your planning that little bit easier.
When you are creating a budget for your resort cost, also think about whether this covers daily rates or if there are discounts to be had for longer stays.
The Location is Important
A central location is key
If a resort is not centrally located, or if it is not close to the parks and attractions, you will struggle to get the most out of your vacation. If you are having to travel off-site each and every time you want to go somewhere, it will be frustrating.
Similarly, if you are away from the major attractions, you will find that you waste a lot of time traveling and moving from one place to the next. No matter how long your vacation is, you will not want to waste time traveling. So, think about where a location is in relevance to everything you want to do and see.
See if the site works for you and your family, and see if the location is easily accessible. If you are staying outside of the theme parks, then how far are you prepared to travel – and with what frequency?
On-Site or Off-Site
Stay off-site and you get more flexibility
Location is an important question to answer, but so too is this one – Do you want your resort to be on-site or off-site? Do you want to start looking at Westgate’s closest hotel to Disney, or would you prefer to be in Disney, staying in one of their themed hotels?
What do those that you are traveling with want? Are they after having breakfast with Mickey Mouse in the morning, or are they content to stay a few minutes off-site and have easy access to a waterpark? When it comes to looking at both on-site and off-site, the budget may have an impact on your decision.
Because ultimately, you can get more value for money when you head off-site and just move a few minutes (or even a few miles) off-site. So, when looking at resorts, consider how far you want to travel each day and see if the extra time taken (traveling to and from resorts) is worth it and cost-saving for you.
Source: Facebook, posted on 19th March 2021, Westgate Resorts Official Profile
Needs and Requirements
Establish what you need and want from your resort
All resorts offer something that is a little different from resorts that offer lots of activities and clubs for kids to those that offer a little bit of something for everyone.
Establishing what your needs and requirements are (as soon as you can) is going to be beneficial, and this is mainly because it will save you a lot of time, stress, and hassle. If you are not sure what you need or what you are looking for, then you could find that you end up going for a resort that does not fulfill all of your requirements and needs (or perhaps even those of others you are traveling with).
Ultimately, this would have an impact on your vacation, and it would affect how much fun and enjoyment you get out of your visit to Orlando.
Amenities and Facilities
What facilities and amenities will make your stay perfect?
The facilities and amenities that you need and require during your stay are important. If you are after certain facilities, then you need to make this clear at the start of your search. Because if you do not, you could see yourself going round in circles.
You will also find that the amenities and facilities a resort have to offer to affect the price. There will be things that you will expect as standards, such as free Wi-Fi or free parking. However, there may also be other things that you were not expecting.
For example, a resort may have a waterpark within its grounds – and this might not be something you thought you needed at first. However, when you are traveling with kids, you will find the more amenities, the better!
Restaurants and Dining Options
Eating in or taking away on vacation?
One of the great things about resorts in Orlando is their dining options to suit all. A lot of resorts will offer a multitude of dining options and restaurants to serve most guests. From burger joints to fine dining, you will find it all within a resort.
If you are staying somewhere for 2-3 weeks, you will want as much variety as possible. You will not want to be staying or eating in the same place over and over again, as this will get boring, and it will be predictable. Being able to choose where you eat and when you eat is crucial – especially if you are traveling as a family.
When looking at restaurants and dining options, also think about opening times and availability. If certain locations within a restaurant are only available at set times, you may find that you end up missing out. This may be because a booking was needed beforehand, or it may be because it clashed with something else you were doing that day
How important is star rating to you?
The star rating of a resort matters, and it is important in your search. There are lots of resorts to choose from in Orlando, but of course, not all of them will offer the star rating that you want. Deciding what star rating means to you and why it is important is the first step you need to take. For example, are you happy to settle for a 3-star if you have to?
Or do you need to focus your search only on four stars, simply because they offer a great selection and value for money? What does a star rating mean to you, and how is it going to impact both you and those you are traveling with?
What Other Guests Have Said
Looking at feedback from others will help you make an informed decision
When you are visiting a resort for the first time, it is always useful to see what other people have said. Other people’s views and opinions matter, especially when it comes to choosing a resort. Reading online reviews ad seeing what other gusts loved (and complained about is crucial).
If guests are continually mentioning the same errors or problems, then you have to question if this resort is right for you. If you are traveling to Orlando as a family, or if this is your first time traveling, you want to be sure that you get the best resort that you can. Listening to what other guests have said by using popular review sites will help you to get all of the answers and information that you need.
Quality and Value for Money
Are you getting bang for your buck?
Not all resorts in Orlando offer good value for money. Some are built around a name, and sometimes, you will find that this name carries them through. You want every aspect of your vacation to contain a good value for money, and your resort is no different.
If you are paying over the odds, it will affect your mindset, and ultimately this will affect your enjoyment of the resort and of your holiday. Similarly, if you are not paying enough per night (or for the duration of your vacation), you will find that you will have to settle and compromise (perhaps with bad service). This is, of course, not what you want to happen – especially if this is your first time traveling to Orlando.
Ultimately, to make your decision easier, you have to compare what you get from each resort you look at. Even though you may not be able to make a direct comparison, you still will be able to see each resort side by side. This will help you see what is crucial and essential in your resort search. If you find that a resort doesn’t quite offer what you need and want, then don’t be afraid to let go of it and move on!