Trip Guilt

Keep original plan or switch to a themed value resort for the kids?

  • Polynesian

    Votes: 112 80.6%
  • Art or Animation

    Votes: 25 18.0%
  • All Star Movies

    Votes: 2 1.4%

  • Total voters


DIS Veteran
Apr 17, 2011
Another vote for Poly! We love the tropical feel and being so close to MK. At Poly you have the electrical water pageant and can see the MK fireworks which is different than if you were at a value and of course there is something special about taking the monorails. You also have more food choices you can visit other MK resorts by monorail or boat.


DIS Veteran
Mar 17, 2013
We have been through the same struggle. My kids are 11 and 9 now, but we started going to WDW regularly when my youngest was 2. We have never stayed value, but my kids have begged to do so ever since seeing videos of them. DH and I have no desire to stay at any of them. Our compromise is we stay moderate, deluxe, or DVC, but we have visited both AoA and ASMo. We let the kids walk around and see all the statues, eat in the food court, check out the gift shops, and then we go back to our resort. The kids love getting to see the over-the-top Disney theming and are fine with not actually staying there. They also love the pool slides and proximity to parks that comes with the deluxes.
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Apr 20, 2014
Well, the Poly is my dream resort and I wont be able to foot that bill until my kids are financially about 20 years! 😂 So we've stayed at AoA and are headed to Pop. Your kids are going to love the Poly. My kids consider the monorail an attraction onto itself! That said, the room and theming at the AoA suites is a dream come true to children.
I'd say, if this is your one and only trip...Poly hands down. If you're going to come back, maybe you can be more open to the things that excite the kids and can do Poly later when they can appreciate the added comforts.

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  • Rich M

    DIS Veteran
    Apr 18, 2016
    FYI, the Poly has a boat that goes from it’s dock to the MK, although walking to the TTC and jumping on the MK parking lot/MK ferry might be closer than taking the smaller Poly/GF boat depending on which longhouse you are in. Likewise, there is no boat from the TTC to Epcot, but it might be quicker to walk to the TTC to board the Epcot monorail rather than board the resort monorail at the Poly lobby and then transfer at the TTC to the Epcot monorail.
    The Poly is a victim of it’s popularity and proximity to MK. Lots of casual visitors wander the grounds, eat at the restaurants, and drink at the bars, thus the lines to get on the monorail there. When the Aloha show lets out it’s particularly bad. When MK closes getting on to the resort monorail is a challenge as well.
    I agree with this. Our longhouse was right next to the TTC so it was easy for us. We rode the small boat one time after leaving MK after the morning time so the boat was empty. Trying to get to MK in the morning for rope drop was more successful using the ferry. We loved our stay at Poly for sure but the monorail was a let down as we in our mind thought it would have been the greatest part of the trip. We would stay there in a heartbeat again but we are trying BC in our December trip and can't wait to be able to walk to Epcot and HS


    DIS Veteran
    May 26, 2015
    If this is going to be your only trip, stay at the Poly. If you think there will be a second trip I would go with a suite at AoA. Your older kids are the perfect age for the over the top theming of AoA and I've heard once you go deluxe it's hard to stay at a lower level. Another thing to consider is which resort has foods your kids like...a food court that offers grilled cheese has been the deciding point between resorts for us in the past.


    DIS Veteran
    Mar 22, 2015
    Our very first trip, we stayed at BC. I originally looked at Pop, Music, etc. My kids loved them but we found out we needed a room for 5, so we went with BC. My kids are a little older now and love Poly, BC, BWI, etc. They don't even remember looking at the other ones lol! I'd stay stick with the Poly. They will love it!


    DIS Veteran
    Oct 4, 2010
    I love the Poly but If it wasn’t for its close proximity to MK, I would say your kids would probably like AoA better given their ages.
  • SnowChaser

    Feb 7, 2011
    I would go with the Poly. You’ll get plenty of Disney themed hours in the parks. I’ve found it helps my family to go back to a visually “quiet” resort after an over-stimulating day in the park. And as others have said, you can visit the values.


    DIS Veteran
    Feb 24, 2013
    Or is there a compromise?
    - Poly: Fun theming for the South Pacific, I would possibly wind the kids up with Moana and Lilo+Stitch before you head out, there is a volcano pool there (maybe show them that)
    - Beach/Yacht: Pool is amazing and you can walk/boat to two parks, also has a ice cream shop that has the "kitchen sink"
    - Animal Kingdom: Get a Savanah view and your kids can watch the animals from the room

    I would skip the Wilderness but we are from the North and can go to a similar themed location at home.


    DIS Veteran
    Sep 10, 2013
    I say go where you want to go! I would never be mad at my parents for taking me on a nice Hawaiian vacation -- much less staying at a resort themed like one at WDW. If they like big, loud, and Disney things, you're going to have at least 10 hours of big, loud, Disney things when you step foot into the parks. At the end of the day, pretending that you were whisked away into the south Pacific might be something you'll all appreciate! And yes, I think they'll love the water pageant and the glimpse of the castle from their hotel, just like at the beginning of every Disney movie.


    DIS Veteran
    Aug 17, 2005
    The kids will like wherever you choose, so I would stick with the Poly. The theming is fun at the values, but the amenities are way better at the deluxe resorts. In terms of convenience, the Poly wins hands down, and when time and ease equal value, if you can afford a deluxe, it is worth it.
  • Disneylover99

    DIS Veteran
    Jul 17, 2012
    Everything I read about value resorts is that they are loud, rowdy, crowded, and transportation is horrible.
    We love the values and have never had bad experiences at any of them. In fact, they’ve all been quiet and calm for us and the bus transportation has been excellent! :)

    That being said, I agree with everyone else. Stay at the Poly. We love it there!

    Hi Pluto

    "Hi Pluto, bye Pluto, missing you already Pluto!"
    Jan 1, 2015
    When we stayed at All-Star Music for the first time when DS was 4 after many years of deluxes, we definitely felt VALUE. Of course, there are a lot of nice things about the value resorts, but they in no way compare to how much better a deluxe feels. We had many, many moments of missing our deluxes.

    Poly will give you: views of the castle, close monorail access, more dining options, more transportation options, a kids club, a better pool, a bigger room (unless you book a AoA suite), a balcony, views of seven seas lagoon, the electrical water pageant, and overall a feeling of luxury.

    When I took a group of teenagers to WDW, we stayed at Pop and they all loved it. But as soon as we explored Poly they all said, "Wait, why aren't we staying here? This is amazing!"


    DIS Veteran
    Jan 26, 2011
    Our first trip was spent at The Poly. It is an amazing resort! Show the kids the luau and the MK fireworks you can watch from the hotel pool or beach. The transportation options are the best on property IMO. Another deluxe with wow factor for the kids is AKL.


    Aug 10, 2009
    Stay at the Poly for sure! As others have said, YOU need to be happy, too! They have a character meal, Volcano Pool, monorail, fireworks views, the works! The room will be large, transportation will be better, and your kids will also get their fill of theme at the parks! There are so many little details at the Deluxe resorts that we appreciate. We have stayed at all levels of resorts. We have been to the Poly for meals, but never stayed there.
    Stay at the Poly!!!


    Jul 7, 2010
    As others have posted already, I'd go with Poly still. We stayed at Poly when my kids were 7, 5, & 3. They loved the volcano pool and that was before it was refurbished. They also loved how large the room was and the overall feel of the resort. My husband & I loved being able to stroll right onto the monorail with two strollers to MK and being able to walk over to TTC & stroll onto the monorail to Epcot. On our last trip we went over to the Poly to enjoy a Dole whip and the kids got a peek at the new set up at the pool & got excited seeing the improvements. While eating, we walked the path from Poly & GF and the kids enjoyed the views & walk. Now we're staying there our next trip 3 nights and 5 nights at YC.


    DIS Veteran
    Feb 28, 2014
    We stayed at the all stars and AoA for our first 3-4 trips and realized they just were not for us. We switched to deluxe resorts and have never regretted it. The kids have also never said anything about the drastic drop in over the top theming. AoA is nice, but staying at a resort that has larger more comfortable beds, a pool slide, a balcony off your room, multiple transportation options, more relaxing access to food, and closer proximity to Magic Kingdom is 100x better than the value resort theming.

    loves to dive

    DIS Veteran
    Aug 21, 2011
    The kids are going to end up liking no matter where you stay, it's WDW and they will be so excited about the whole thing. Poly is good if you are going to spend a lot of time in MK (which I'm assuming with little ones you will) since it's just a boat ride away. We used to stay there all the time when my son was small, but basically because the monorail resorts were the only resorts on property at the time. We don't spend a lot of time at MK now, we tend to spend most of our time at Epcot and Poly isn't good for that for us since you are limited to the monorail to get there and I'm not a fan. The poly is fun for kids, lots of activities and just the look of the place. Or course, you would save a ton of money staying at one of the value resorts so there is that but with three kids and two adults, one of those rooms would get crowded. You could get a suite at AoA but, in my opinion, those are way too overpriced for what they are. If money isn't an issue, I'd stick to Poly. You can always visit the other resorts.


    DIS Veteran
    Apr 16, 2007
    Another vote for the Poly. We've never stayed at any of the values as they don't appeal to us, but we LOVE the Poly! As others have stated, the rooms are large/spacious, the pool is fun (you can watch fireworks while swimming), Captain Cooks is great for quick meals/snacks, and you are just 2 monorail stops from MK and a quick 5-7 min walk to TTC to catch the Epcot monorail. The beach is also great for relaxing while watching the fireworks. The Poly is an amazing resort with beautiful tropical surroundings, I think your kids will love it!


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