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
    139

MBatts23

Earning My Ears
Joined
Apr 27, 2010
I'm having a bit of trip guilt. It is our first Disney trip, and I booked at the Polynesian... Mostly because it was the one that was most attractive to my husband and I. My kids just saw videos of Art of Animation and All Star movies and they were amazed at all of the theming. They are 8, 5, and 2 years old, and they got so excited 😬 Now I am second guessing my resort choice since they were so excited about those other ones. Is it selfish to stay at the Poly? Should I switch to one of the other ones that is animated and more fun for the kids, or is the Poly still fun for kiddos? Or is there a compromise? Wilderness lodge maybe? I am just not a motel type of person, and that is the vibe I got from the value resorts when I initially booked. My husband and I have never been to Disney before. I based our decision solely on information and opinions gathered from various websites. Everything I read about value resorts is that they are loud, rowdy, crowded, and transportation is horrible. If it makes a difference, our trip is this fall and we are staying 7 nights. We have one full day and 2 half-days planned as rest/resort days. Someone suggested a split stay to me, but I do not find that option attractive. Opinions? Advice?
Here’s my 2 cents.....Obviously the Poly is way better than any value resort. But what we did was work our way up the resort chain with our kids. Started at Pop 10 years ago and just got back from the Grand Floridian last week. Now we’re screwed though as we mentioned staying at POFQ next time and the kids were like, “what?” If multiple Disney trips are in your future, you are setting a high bar with a first trip stay at the Poly. Now if money is not an object and you can afford deluxe hotels every trip, then by all means go for it. AoA has nice suites and that is really you’re only option imo with a family of 5. It will be tight in the All Stars and standard rooms at AoA. On the other hand if this will be your only Disney trip for a long time then and you can afford it then I would stay at the Poly. TIFWIW, only you know what’s best for your family. Good luck and have fun.
 

soccermom54

Mouseketeer
Joined
Apr 12, 2015
When our children were the age of yours, we alternated each summer between the Polynesian and The Contemporary. We spent a lot of time in the MK and it was easy to get there in the mornings and it was easy to return in the afternoons for nap time for everyone! The Polynesian is particularly nice for access to the EPCOT monorail via a short walk. The theme at the Polynesian cannot be beat and it is nice to sit on the beach at night and watch the fireworks when you are not in the park. Now DH and I are retired and live close to WDW so we make mostly day trips. On MK visits we still take the boat to the Polynesian at the end of the day and enjoy a Dole whip and walk around the beautiful resort. I know the Poly is pretty pricey these days but it will always be magical to us :)
 

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  • alex9179

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Aug 17, 2010
    Getting to and from Poly to MK/Epcot is often more pleasant.

    Our first trip (ages 8,7,5) was a split stay at AOA and ending at Poly. You can consider that if you're up for packing everything up mid-trip. Bell services takes care of moving your bags but you won't have access to them until after 3pm, sometime. My kids liked AOA and thought the theming was cool. They LOVED the Poly. Their favorites are CR and YC. I don't think the resort will impact your children's vacation, as much as it would for the parents.
     

    WEDWDW

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Mar 27, 2004
    Keep the Poly for all the reasons stated above and take the kiddos to AoA for Dinner and Resort exploring one NIGHT(CARS is so cool at night with all the neon and headlights lit up!). :)
     

    Disneypro1

    life is great!
    Joined
    Jan 20, 2019
    We go where the kids want to. So its always POP or Music. If we go alone..its POFQ usually. We cant justify paying for a deluxe when we have kids. Too many other things for that money to goto.
    The kids love the values and that's what Disney is all about. Plus, for the money...the values are great well....value.
     

    stephk1981

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Oct 11, 2013
    I really dislike the All-star resorts...only an opinion! We love the Poly, and as far as AOA we haven't even visited. If you are going ' for your kids' and you and husband are willing to try AOA...you could possibly save some money....which is always great, right? However, the Poly pool is amazing, transportation is great, and proximity for evening fireworks at resort can't be beat. Either way, have an amazing trip!
     
  • DisTXMom

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    May 3, 2013
    Poly is a great family resort and we stayed there in our first trip when DD’s were 3&5. Great theme and the kids loved the volcano pool. Transportation cannot be beat. It will be enjoyed by the whole family.
     

    tinkerbell1112

    Mouseketeer
    Joined
    Jun 8, 2014
    My opinion... Stay where you want to and where your budget allows. The location alone of the Polynesian is worth it. Kids will not even remember a video of another resort once you're there! There's so much to do.
     

    MagicalMawMaw

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Sep 30, 2009
    We usually stay at AKL a savannah view but this spring we took 2 of our granddaughters and stayed at AoA in a lion king family suite. We loved it!

    The resort is darling & the rooms were so cute with plenty of space for us 4. We were mostly in the parks from early till late so we spent very little time at the rooms.

    At AKL we spend lots of time at the resort & more time relaxing.

    Your kiddos would love AOA as the theming is simply adorable. The pools are so cute & it’s just over the top Disney.

    The bus system was very impressive when we were there this year too. And My granddaughters ages 13 & 16 loved the resort & our Lion King family room.

    I’d say no on the All Stars for you as they are really kind of basic & more like a motel 6 with theming.

    AS for The Poly... it has a super location & great restaurants. It’s naturally more upscale being a deluxe. Really just depends on what you like.
     

    Alexander

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Jun 11, 2002
    If you have the money to stay at the Poly, stay at the Poly. Being on the monorail will be so convenient with three little ones.
     
  • DisneyArkie

    Mouseketeer
    Joined
    Jan 25, 2018
    I'm having a bit of trip guilt. It is our first Disney trip, and I booked at the Polynesian... Mostly because it was the one that was most attractive to my husband and I. My kids just saw videos of Art of Animation and All Star movies and they were amazed at all of the theming. They are 8, 5, and 2 years old, and they got so excited 😬 Now I am second guessing my resort choice since they were so excited about those other ones. Is it selfish to stay at the Poly? Should I switch to one of the other ones that is animated and more fun for the kids, or is the Poly still fun for kiddos? Or is there a compromise? Wilderness lodge maybe? I am just not a motel type of person, and that is the vibe I got from the value resorts when I initially booked. My husband and I have never been to Disney before. I based our decision solely on information and opinions gathered from various websites. Everything I read about value resorts is that they are loud, rowdy, crowded, and transportation is horrible. If it makes a difference, our trip is this fall and we are staying 7 nights. We have one full day and 2 half-days planned as rest/resort days. Someone suggested a split stay to me, but I do not find that option attractive. Opinions? Advice?
    Stay at the Poly. We prefer WL over all the others, but I believe the kids will love The Poly.

    We are actually trying AK for the first time. Hope we love it as much as WL. Our second favorite is YC... another great option for kids.
     

    Mmouse1588

    Mouseketeer
    Joined
    Dec 16, 2018
    We just came back from poly a few weeks ago with our 3 year old. It was great for him. They have that awesome splash area next to pool. He loved the big slide at the actual pool. There were characters pluto and Mickey! Playing with the kids outside the hotel with Games. He was thrilled! I have never seen that before. But my husband wont stay again. There was no arcade or regular play ground and for his purposes no gym. I thought it was awesome. One of the nights we planned to stay back happened to be the night there was a storm. The pool and beach were closed practically the whole night even though no rain (lightening within 6 miles) and it irked him there was nothing to do at the resort with our kid.
     

    lmhall2000

    May the road rise to meet you....May God hold you
    Joined
    Aug 11, 2002
    The monorail alone makes it worth it!! We loved being so close to MK when our kids were that age...just now venturing to YC/BC..and our kids are 20-24...stayed at Poly 3x bc they loved it so much!
     

    Carlymouse

    Mouseketeer
    Joined
    Sep 22, 2017
    Have never stayed at the others, but the Poly was the first resort my family stayed at when I was 6 or 7...I remember it as so lush and beautiful I've been dying to go back- and that's based on my childhood memory. I do think AoA appears to have great Disney theming, but the pools at Poly look really exciting for kids. Plus, you could take advantage of Ohana very conveniently for as character breakfast or the dinner show if you can get a reservation.
     

    White Rose

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Jul 8, 2003
    When I was a kid in the 80s we visited the Poly to have breakfast and I wanted to stay there soooooooooooo badly! I finally got to, in 2008. It was not in the budget before then.

    IF you are a tiny bit unsure if your kids will like it, find YouTube videos of the Poly and watch them with the kids...see their reactions. You know your budget and your kids better then us.
     

    Mskay1216

    Mouseketeer
    Joined
    Mar 2, 2014
    We were in the same boat on our trip we took 2 weeks ago
    We have a 5yo and 7yo
    Last trip we stayed in the cars suite at AOA
    I was feeling guilty as well my husband I always wanted to stay at the poly

    We loved it and so did our dynamic duo
    Being able to see the fireworks from the resort and the proximity to mk was priceless
    We had breakfast reservations at the castle so being so close was a plus and being able to go back to the resort and relax and go back in the evening was very convenient
    We loved the pool and the activities they had for them

    If it's in your budget go for it
    I would stay there again but would have at least one or two resort days to really enjoy the amenities

    Now with all that being said your children will have a blast wherever you stay (that's what I learned) if your excited about poly they will be. If your excited about all stars they will be too especially at their age

    We are planning our 2020 trip and the plan is to book the poly again however if the better deal is the suites at aoa that's where we'll be
    For this last trip at the time we booked the price difference wasn't that big so the poly it was!
    (We booked dvc studio very spacious and nice )
     

    kiford

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Nov 9, 2012
    I voted for Polynesian even though it's the one deluxe we've decided not to stay in as it just doesn't wow us for the price. However, given that you are the parent, you are paying for it, and you have to be the one to deal with the transportation, the crowding, the noise and the potentially attending lack of sleep and yet still have to manage the trip and the kids, I say go with the one that you researched and feel is the best for your family. Your kids will still have fun at the parks regardless of where you stay, will probably be less cranky at the end of the day when you have to go back to the resort and it's more convenient to do so, and will probably still really enjoy the resort. They'll forget all about the other ones once they're there.

    I am just not a motel type of person, and that is the vibe I got from the value resorts when I initially booked.
    Personally, that's the vibe I get from the Poly - 70's motel which is one reason we don't want to stay there especially given that it's often similarly priced to the GF. It's not just that there are outer buildings 2-3 stories high - GF has something similar but I don't get that vibe from it. I think it's just because of the age of the resort. Even though it's been renovated many times, it just retains that look inside the buildings (though not the rooms) to me because of the design which is a 70's design aesthetic that it just can't lose.

    Or is there a compromise? Wilderness lodge maybe?
    If you're open it, I would recommend Wilderness Lodge. It's a lovely resort, less expensive than Poly (and IMHO much nicer), has a great pool and kids water play area, and transportation is still pretty good. Downside is that the rooms are a little smaller than the Poly but they'll still be larger than a value resort and it's all inside corridors rather than external buildings so no motel vibe.
     

    angelmav

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Jun 18, 2006
    Lol, my 7yo is disappointed we are not staying at AS Movies since she wanted to see the giant dalmation. somehow I think she will get over it.
     

    Smittolis

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Mar 2, 2017
    The Poly is great for kids, lots going on, great amenities, good food selection and things onsite and great transportation links. You cannot go wrong, no need to feel guilty about it. If you can afford it without, which I am assuming you can as you booked it! You will have a great time. The experiences you will all have will be more than worth it. The Poly is on many peoples bucket list of must do's! And you guys are doing it on your first trip! So again, enjoy it, have fun and don't worry about things too much.

    You will enjoy just being a stones throw away from the park at closing time ;o)

    As a family of 5 we also like the Wilderness lodge, a great hotel but transportation can be an issue with 3 kids especially if you are using a stroller. The boat dock at the back has alternating boats to the MK, 1 big and 1 small. The big boat you do not need to fold any strollers, the small boat you will have to. This isn't the end of the world if you are organized but it is something that may be a deal breaker. We personally choose the Poly or CR as a result.
     

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