The Pros and Cons of Disney World Moderate Resorts


Over the past 2+ years through this crazy little blog of mine, I’ve worked through comparing all Disney World resorts – their pros and cons in general but comparing a value resort to a deluxe resort isn not a fair fight. Generally people plan their experience around budget, so you’re working with a “value”, “moderate” or “deluxe” style budget!

I’m going to break down each of the resorts classes, start with moderate resorts since that seems to be the “middle of the road” for Disney vacations. These are also some of the largest resorts in space and capacity. For more detailed information on each resort, check out the moderate resort page and each individual resort for size, pools, and restaurants. I’ll start with my opinion of “the best of”…

Best Pool: Coronado Springs with Caribbean Beach in a very close second!

Best Grounds: Based on size, Port Orleans French Quarter; Based on overall appeal – Port Orleans French Quarter or Riverside (themes are related) If you want a more vibrant resort, Caribbean Beach is definitely appealing!

Best Location on Disney property: The Port Orleans sisters – Riverside & French Quarter have a bit of an edge because they have boat access to and from Disney Springs! In general, all of the moderate resorts are along a similar line of  “latitude” on Disney property so it takes roughly the same amount of time to get to Magic Kingdom (which is what most guests are the most worried about)

Best Bus system: It’s a really close race here and it truly depends on your timing. Disney buses run every 20 minutes to and form all 4 theme parks. You may see less of a wait time during peak travel times and maybe a bit longer wait during off peak times (11 am – 4 pm), but nothing is more frustrating than waiting for an Epcot bus and seeing 3 Disney Springs buses and 3 Magic Kingdom buses go by while the time ticks closer and closer to park opening. I get it – been, there, done that! I think Coronado Springs has a slight edge with just 4 internal bus stops. Port Orleans French Quarter & Riverside share buses at times, so when that is the case, I don’t think it wins the race!

Best Dining options: Port Orleans Riverside (with a nod going to French Quarter for their New Orleans style food – beignets!) with Coronado Springs in a close second. As a resort with a conference center, it makes sense that it has good food options.

Best rooms for kids: Tie. Port Orleans Riverside Royal Rooms have an amazing princess theme. At Caribbean Beach, you can enjoy a pirate themed room for your swashbucklers!

Best rooms for adults: Coronado Springs Business class is a moderate resort version of the club level service at the deluxe resorts at a fraction of the price. Enjoy a conveniently located room as well as food and beverage service in their lounge included in the cost of your stay. A close second would be Port Orleans French Quarter as the atmosphere can be quite romantic.

The good, the bad, and the ugly. This is all about where you want to stay for your vacation. If price is a factor, Port Orleans (both), and Caribbean Beach rooms all have the same rack (non-discounted) rates for standard rooms. The difference? Location and size. While all resorts in this category have queen beds now with the update FINALLY coming through for Caribbean Beach, resort size makes the difference for us! Traveling as 2 adults? You can guarantee yourself a king size bed by choosing this category room. If you’re a family of 5, you’re stuck with a room at Port Orleans Riverside or going to a different class of resort. It’s the only non-suite option that sleeps more than 4. There’s no real difference in travel time among the resorts to Magic Kingdom as they are located on the southern half of the resort.

Port Orleans resorts were renovated in 2012 and Coronado Springs renovated right around the same time. Caribbean Beach is the most recently updated resort having a major update in fall 2014 into early 2015.

Caribbean Beach, Port Orleans Riverside, and Coronado Springs are all larger resorts. If you’re concerned about extra walking in your resort, stay at French Quarter or choose a preferred room at one of the other resorts. Remember these are just my opinions, and if you have your heart set on a specific resort, GO!

A free gift for your Disney vacation! The amazing and exciting Minnie Box! (subject to minimum vacation package)

A free gift for your Disney vacation! The amazing and exciting Minnie Box! (subject to minimum vacation package)

Ready to get started planning your 2016 Disney World vacation? Please contact me at any time for a free quote. The benefits to using an authorized Disney vacation planner include saving time before and during your vacation with itinerary planning which can help save you hours of standing in line each day. Plus you won’t have to watch for available discounts, research resorts, wake up early for dining reservations, or stay up late for FastPasses. The best part about using a travel planner instead of planning yourself? It’s totally FREE! Plus I’ll take away some of the stress and confusion of planning a Disney vacation (especially if it’s your first one!)It’s also a worry free vacation opportunity. I’ll walk through through all of the steps to the process with a few little insider tips along the way! If you already have your vacation planned and are interested in transferring your vacation, ask me how!

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