I’m writing this as we’re checking out of the B Resort, a Disney Springs hotel. For the price – compared with many neighboring Disney Springs hotels – it was a good deal. But, to be honest, we’re not likely to stay there again unless changes are made. (John Gregory’s video is pretty accurate, based on our experience.)
TLDR: Your safest, happiest, budget-minded choice is to book a hotel at the actual Disney World property, not at Hotel Plaza in Disney Springs.
I wish our latest stay in Orlando had been at a Disney-owned hotel.
I’ve spent many happy overnights and vacations at hotels on the Disney property. Even their “All Star _____” hotels – budget-priced – can be fine. After all, you’re only sleeping there, right?
After staying at the B Resort at Disney Springs, my strongest recommendation is: Book your vacation at a Disney-owned hotel. Really. Don’t stay anywhere else.
Learn from our mistake.
Here’s our story: After moving out of our Orlando home, we stayed in an Orlando area hotel while my husband completed his two-weeks’ notice at his previous job.
Disney’s own hotels were booked solid. So were most good, affordable hotels within 45 minutes of Disney World.
(Avoid anything priced under $100/night, and carefully read reviews for hotels under $150/night. Some hotels and motels are shady; in some cases, they’re used as housing by multiple hospitality workers. After all, those rooms can be cheaper than apartment rentals.)
We found what looked like a great Priceline deal at Disney Springs, but it wasn’t. In fact, when we checked into the hotel, we realized it was going to cost us about double what we’d expected based on Priceline’s “Express Deals” price.
That was sticker shock, to put it mildly. Worse, when we immediately called Priceline, to either have the rate adjusted (to what was quoted) or our money returned, their agent immediately turned defensive and then hung up on us. Twice.*
I’m writing this so you don’t make similar booking mistakes.
Ask these questions before booking a room at a Disney-vicinity hotel or motel
Here are a few things to know before booking a room, sight unseen (or worse, through a Priceline “Express Deal”), in the Disney Springs (FL) area.
- Almost all hotels near Walt Disney World (but not actual Disney-owned hotels on the Disney property) charge their hotel guests a per-night parking fee, even if you self-park in their parking lot. In 2022, at the B Resort, the fee was $23.95 per night. If you’re booking a hotel anywhere near Disney World, ask about their parking fees.
- B Resort charged us a per-day fee for housekeeping services. In nearly two weeks at the hotel, a member of housekeeping knocked on our door just once – a few hours before we checked out – to ask if we needed trash emptied or fresh towels. So, ask if your hotel charges housekeeping fees or other hotel fees not mentioned on the hotel’s website or the booking services’ websites. (Our total fees, added to our daily room fee: $65 per day.)
- Ask about the view (and traffic noise levels) in your hotel room. When we stayed at the B Resort, the view from our 15th floor tower room was lovely in some – but not all – directions. I talked about that in a previous post, Two Weeks at Disney Springs. Here’s another lovely photo from the outside elevator near our room.
The blue balloon is an attraction at Disney Springs, and it goes up & down throughout the day. You can get great views – and photos – if you ride in it.
What I didn’t talk about was another view from our room. (I don’t mean the smog photo, but this one, taken at a different angle from the same window.)
This is what we saw from our hotel room window. It wasn’t nearly as nice as the view from inside the elevator.
Fortunately, our room wasn’t on the side directly facing I-4 (the six-lane highway clearest at the middle right of that photo). Had we been on that side, the sound of trucks and cars might have been annoying. (Florida does not require car inspections. Expect some really noisy – or nonexistent – mufflers.)
And really, is a busy interstate highway the view you’ll want when you’re paying for a four-figure (or more) Disney vacation?
It’s not just Disney Springs…
Note that the hotel nearest us, on the other side of I-4, is a Fairfield by Marriott. If you’re booking there, or at any other “convenient to I-4” or “convenient to Disney World,” it’s equally important to ask about your view.
But here’s another issue we had at the B Resort, and it’s one other guests have complained about: The proximity of towers.
You can see one (closer than it looks in the photo) that was near our hotel room. I’m pretty sure it’s why tower room guests – paying some of the higher prices for B Resort rooms – have intermittent wifi and phone service: It’s a sea of signals there.
In my case, my phone calls were dropped every four or five minutes. The in-room TV’s wifi connection was unreliable. And trying to get online with my laptop…? Most days, I didn’t even try. It was that challenging to stay online.
So, if you’re planning a Disney World vacation, be sure to ask questions about your hotel before you make your reservation.
If you make non-refundable reservations (through a site like Priceline) and then discover steep parking fees, etc., and – to make matters worse – you’ve brought your family to a hotel with a not-so-magical view of busy highways… you may wish you’d asked more questions, first.
*We’ll never trust Priceline again. Had we booked this same visit directly with B Resort, we’d have saved a LOT. And probably had free breakfasts in their restaurant, as well.