The Value of a Staying in a Value Resort at Disney World

Choosing which Walt Disney World Resort hotel to call home for the duration of your vacation isn't always an easy choice. We know it's hard to figure out what hotel will work best for you and your family's budget so today we're going to spend some time talking about the Value resorts and what's good and not-so-good about these popular resorts.

The Value of a Staying in a Value Resort at Disney WorldThe Value of a Staying in a Value Resort at Disney World

Walt Disney World is home to five Value resorts: All-Star Movies, All-Star Music, All-Star Sports, Pop Century, and the newest hotel Art of Animation. The Value resorts are normally the most budget-friendly of the Disney World hotels and they're great fun for the kids.

The Good

All of the Value resorts feature over-the-top themeing with giant, colorful icons that fit into the theme of the hotel. At Pop Century you'll find giant icons including Big Wheels, cans of Play-Doh, and even Mowgli and Baloo from The Jungle Book. Art of Animation alone is home to more than 2,500 icons and the Cars area is like nothing you've ever seen at a Disney World hotel.

It's always fun to walk around the grounds of the hotel just to check out the icons. And the Value resorts are quite pretty at night when the icons and exterior stairwells are lit up.

Fun and colorful icons at the Value resortsFun and colorful icons at the Value resorts

Rooms: The majority of the rooms at the Value resorts are quite small at about 260 square feet. If you aren't planning on spending a lot of time in your room the size shouldn't make a difference. The rooms all feature two double beds, a dresser that doubles as a television stand, a small table with two chairs, and a vanity area with a sink and separate toilet and shower. The vanity area is separated from the sleeping area with a curtain, which adds a bit more privacy.

Two of the Value resorts, Art of Animation and All-Star Music also feature Family Suites that sleep up to five guests. The majority of the rooms at Art of Animation are 556 square foot Family Suites that include a master bedroom and a living room area with additional sleeping room. The Art of Animation buildings with Family Suites also include interior hallways. The rest of the Value resorts all feature exterior hallways.

Crush at Disney's Art of AnimationCrush at Disney's Art of Animation

The Value resorts are home to some great swimming pools, especially the Big Blue Pool at Art of Animation. This pool is the largest non-waterpark pool at Disney World and even features underwater speakers. Each value resort has one main themed pool and several smaller quiet pools. Guests will find the quiet pools are normally less busy than the main pool.

Dining: Each of the Value resorts has its own quick service food court. The Landscape of Flavors at Art of Animation is quite possibly the best quick service spot at any of the Disney hotels. Guests will find a great selection at breakfast, lunch, and dinner including create-your-own burgers and pastas.

The Bowling Pin quiet pool at Pop CenturyThe Bowling Pin quiet pool at Pop Century

Price: The Value resort rack rates vary based on the season at Disney World, as is the case with every hotel on property. Prices can range from $96 per night in the Value season to almost $200 a night in the Holiday season. Art of Animation is considered a "value plus" resort and rates there can vary from $123 per night for a Standard room ($303 for a Family Suite) in the Value season up to $224 per night for a Standard room ($514 for a Family Suite) during the Holiday season.

The Not-So-Good

Transportation: The Value resorts are notorious for bad bus transportation via the Disney Parks buses. The All-Star resorts, while they are nice hotels, have some of the worst bus service on property. The three hotels normally share one bus route so the lines for these buses at the end of the day are incredibly long.

Pop Century and Art of Animation both have their own dedicated bus route, but the lines can still be really long and unpleasant. It's always a good idea to pack a little extra patience when you're using the Disney Parks bus system, regardless of your hotel.

Bus stops at Pop CenturyBus stops at Pop Century

Size: The Value resorts are rather spread out and if you aren't in a preferred room or if you don't request a room close to the main building you might be looking at a long walk to the food court and bus stops. And if you're in the Little Mermaid section at Art of Animation you'll be as far out as you can be while still being at Art of Animation.

Finding Nemo section at Art of AnimationFinding Nemo section at Art of Animation

As a whole the Value resorts are usually a great deal. You'll get a nice room for a find some great food choices in the resort's food courts, especially Landscape of Flavors all for a bit less than at other resort levels. And while the transportation is sometimes a drag, the themeing and overall fun vibe at the Value resorts more than makes up for the hassle of a bus ride or two.

What do you love about Disney's Value resorts?What do you love about Disney's Value resorts?

Do you have a favorite Value resort at Walt Disney World? We'd love to hear about it in the comments!

Many thanks to our friends at for use of their photos!

Doc wrote on Tue, 02/24/2015 - 12:42:

Doc's picture

Will be spending my 6th time at POP Century in May. I agree with you on the "value" resorts. Only pain is the transportation situation and it's not really getting better.
Over the years I've stayed at different resorts on property and find the Pros out way the Cons.
I feel more comfortable at a moderate or value resort then at the more expensive ones. I know they are beautiful and offer more, but you spend more time in the parks.
If your a down to earth person and can't afford the "luxury", you can't beat the moderate or value resorts.

RobynPrincess wrote on Tue, 02/24/2015 - 14:14:

RobynPrincess's picture

This has been a really useful article, I'm about to embark on my first ever value stay this week. Thanks :)

Melissa M wrote on Tue, 02/24/2015 - 14:49:

Melissa M's picture

You can't beat the price with value resorts and our kids usually love them. Even when it was just my husband and I we would stay in them because we weren't in the room that often. We love the values!

Carl Heubach wrote on Tue, 02/24/2015 - 14:57:

Carl Heubach's picture

I find the Bus Transportation System at Pop Century to be the best of all the resorts that we have stayed out....The moderate resorts are the worst....some have to go to multiple stops within the park and some are full by the time they reach your stop.

brooke wrote on Tue, 02/24/2015 - 15:07:

brooke's picture

I have to say a bad for me this last time was the beds. They were so hard and u comfy after s long day out. We were also in the last building at the music resort and it felt very isolated. Love the pool, interactive activities, food court and theming are amazing.

Rays Fan wrote on Tue, 02/24/2015 - 15:18:

 Rays Fan's picture

I recommend avoiding All-Star Sports. It's a nice place, but if Disney is hosting a sports tournament at ESPN the groups generally stay there. It's basically a lot of kids with very few chaperons.

Ellen Ferrell wrote on Tue, 02/24/2015 - 15:23:

Ellen Ferrell's picture

We are die hard park fans. We're there at opening and there at closing. Our joke is "we can sleep at home", so we are not interested in paying big prices for nice hotel rooms/views/dining options. Value fits our bill nicely. It's clean, adequate,fun and part of Disney. If that's your philosophy you'll be happy there.

Carol Craig wrote on Tue, 02/24/2015 - 16:15:

Carol Craig's picture

My family and I have stayed in all levels of resorts from deluxe villas to the value.
Pop Century is great. We really enjoy staying there. As far as bus service goes I don't notice any difference between the level of resorts. Sometimes you have to wait on the bus and sometimes it will be right there. That's been my experience.
The advantage of the deluxe resorts for me is there location to the parks.
Have to say that if I stay in a value it is always POP because they do not share bus service with another resort.

Michelle wrote on Tue, 02/24/2015 - 16:37:

Michelle's picture

We have booked All Star Movies twice. The first time we actually stayed there and were very happy with every aspect of our stay. The second time, we checked in and spent one night, and realized that most of the teenagers from Brazil were there, too. They all came back from the parks at around 1am and started playing soccer in the commons area. The next morning we asked for a different room away from all of the kids. We were informed that they were all over the hotel, and in fact, all over almost every hotel in the park. They gave us an upgrade to the Polynesian to appease us. I LOVED our stay at the Poly. I loved the theming, the proximity to the parks, the restaurants, the view, and the size of the room, but truthfully, there is no way I would pay their room rates. If I had to actually pay for a room again, it would be at a value resort.

grandma406 wrote on Tue, 02/24/2015 - 16:47:

grandma406's picture

We stayed at Pop Century one year at Christmas at over $200 a night. My daughter's family was camping at Disney Fort Wilderness and they insisted we stay at a Disney resort so we could get magic hours. The room was so small that when you open the door it hit the bed. The queen bed was uncomfortable and filled the room. The bathroom was right next to the bed. Worst of all, No coffee makers. The walk to the food court took about 10 min. Not the best way to wake up knowing you have to hike for your coffee. I would rather stay in a quality Disney area hotel, have coffee in my room, a big bathroom, a comfy king bed and reliable transportation to the park. We did stay one year at Disney Caribbean Beach and loved it. The rooms were big, near the food court and pool was amazing. There is transportation to the food court for those who have rooms further away from the food court. The transportation to the parks was also very reliable. My advice, if you can not afford a moderate resort, give up the magic hours. It is only one hour before and after the general public hours and not worth the hundreds of dollars you save or the comforts of staying at a Disney area hotel.

Disney fan wrote on Tue, 02/24/2015 - 16:54:

Disney fan 's picture

We've stayed at AoA twice now and we love it! The themes are fun and rooms very comfortably fit our family of five. I love having a separate bathroom from the kids and the showers are amazing! We hopped around to different resorts on some of our off time and I actually think the bus routes to other hotels are much worse. The AoA line is always long but because of that they have a constant flow of buses. And since they don't share a route you go STRAIGHT to your resort once you get on. And you can always jump on a pop century bus if one shows up and there isn't a line. All you have to do is walk across the bridge to get to AoA.

Debbie D wrote on Tue, 02/24/2015 - 18:49:

Debbie D's picture

Our favorite value is Pop Century, primarily because of where it is located and like you said dedicated bus. Our 2nd choice is Sports. The reason is it is first on the line. There really no reason not to stay in the All Star Resorts. When we have stayed in All Stars at peak hours (park opening, park closing) there are dedicated buses. If the bus captain sees that the buses are busy they will bring more buses up, but may not be dedicated .

Lee wrote on Tue, 02/24/2015 - 19:56:

Lee's picture

Being an Annual Passholder, we don't pay for parking at Disney. So, given the choice of two full beds at a value resort, or two queen beds for less money on hotel row near Downtown Disney, we'll take the bigger beds...

Brenda ruutel wrote on Tue, 02/24/2015 - 20:18:

Brenda ruutel's picture

We always stayed at port orleans magnolia or the French quarters then i switched to pop love it save a lot of cash to spend in parks .we have never had a problem ever and the last two years just me N my husband stayed there for our 10days 9nights an will continue to stay love it

Ruth wrote on Tue, 02/24/2015 - 22:02:

Ruth's picture

We enjoy staying at the Value and have stayed at all of them. We have also stayed at the Mid range (3 of them). Out of the Value Sports was the very first Disney Resort that I ever stayed in and it because our home away from home. We now like the Movies better and stay there especially when I bring the grands down. My favorite all time though is Port Orleans. Sorry off of the grid.

Grissell wrote on Tue, 02/24/2015 - 22:22:

Grissell's picture

I love it...all of it. I've stayed at the Value hotels and at the High-end Hotels. No complaints. Its been a few years since I last visited the Values but we had the best experience with guess on the "Value" bus rides. People seem to be a bit nicer or friendlier. My boys are now men in their 20's but when they were in their teens they took bus rides to differents resorts and played a harmless prank - funny sound machine. The people in the "Value" resorts were alot more accepting of the prank then the other Resorts. At the "Value" people just played along, called them out in fun and mostly laughed! Where as the people at the "High-end" resorts got upset and gave them dirty looks. It was a great experience for them and I say - Food for thoughts.

Susana wrote on Wed, 02/25/2015 - 03:34:

Susana's picture

I've stayed at the all star movies and art of animation. The last one was our favorite by far
Land skape of flavors is so much better than the food court at the all star and with 3 little kids
The themed rooms alone would have been more than enough to make this our favorite.

Vicky wrote on Wed, 02/25/2015 - 09:30:

Vicky's picture

We were there booth in last week May 2012 and last week in Aug2013-- the bus service was excellent

Vicky wrote on Wed, 02/25/2015 - 09:33:

Vicky's picture

Grisell'so comment is true ..I've stayed and Value and then Deluxe ..people at Value are way nicer.. People at the end resorts don't even's not like they charge you to smile

Vicky wrote on Wed, 02/25/2015 - 09:33:

Vicky's picture

Oops forget high for high end lol

Jack Flint wrote on Thu, 02/26/2015 - 00:54:

Jack Flint's picture

We have stayed at Pop Century several times and will continue to. Ake Pop Century our Disney hotel of choice.

Debby wrote on Mon, 03/09/2015 - 15:05:

Debby's picture

I stayed at All Star Movies, and the bus transportation is bearable. The good thing is that you are the first pick up of the value resorts. So you are guaranteed a comfortable seat. However, going home, you are the last stop. But overall, I LOVE the giant characters, the themes, and the quick service meals! You are there for the parks, the hotel is just a place to sleep and keep your belongings!

Sara wrote on Mon, 03/09/2015 - 16:56:

Sara's picture

We stayed at All Star Sports in October and hated it. Everything about it felt cheap. The walls were so thin we could hear someone peeing. No joke. We didn't have any problems with the buses - it seemed like an empty one was always rounding the corner as the doors closed on the full one, so it wasn't an issue. I did like the choices at the food court, but that's about it. I'd rather spend the money and be comfortable and happy. We've stayed all over the place, and I really felt that "Disney feeling" everywhere BUT All Star. Polynesian is already booked for this Fall.

Elizabeth Casper wrote on Sat, 03/28/2015 - 23:40:

Elizabeth Casper's picture

We've stayed in All Star Music, All Star Movies and Art of Animation. Art of Animation has, hands down, the best theming out of all the value resorts. However, I rode the Art of Animation and Pop Century buses and they are both INCREDIBLY slow. The All Star Resorts never had buses as late as the Art of Animation or Pop Century ones were while I was staying there. If transportation is a big issue, I would go with the All Star resorts. That being said, I fell in love with Art of Animation during my stay.

Jana wrote on Sun, 03/29/2015 - 18:17:

Jana's picture

We used to to Disney every other year growing up. Of course we loved the parks, but we always loved staying at the All Star resorts. We always did either sports or movies and loved them. My sister is disabled and they were always very accomodating. I now have 1 year old twins and cannot wait to take them to Disney. I will continue to keep the tradition that my famy always had at staying at these resorts. They are not super fancy, but always clean and work out great. We would not be able to afford family trips to Disney if it weren't for these hotels. The only downfall is the buses. It is a little further of a walk to the bus line for the value resorts and they are often crowded, but we always made it work. I would definitely reccomend these resorts-especially if you have little ones!

Michael L wrote on Fri, 06/26/2015 - 06:15:

Michael L's picture

I have to agree with the comments made by Grissell and Vicky: the guests who stay at the Value and Moderate resorts are soooo much nicer and happier than those staying at the more expensive Disney resorts. I have stayed at nearly every resort at Walt Disney World, and the people at the moderate & value resorts are definitely friendlier. The worst guests? Those staying at the Grand Floridian! Nice place to visit, but I wouldn't want to stay there! My personal favourites are Port Orleans Riverside and Disney's Art of Animation.

Post new comment

The content of this field is kept private and will not be shown publicly. If you have a Gravatar account associated with the e-mail address you provide, it will be used to display your avatar.

More information about formatting options