Worth it to stay in Monorail Resort?

mihtaylor

Earning My Ears
Joined
Feb 17, 2020
Hi all,
Traveling to WDW with my kids, ages 2 and 4. Husband will be in meetings for 3 of our 4.5 park days, so I'll be mostly navigating the parks (MK, AK, and Epcot) solo with the kids. I've done this once before, and while it was manageable, transportation was one of the hardest parts. I found the Magic Express buses to be slow, unreliable, and a big hassle with the double stroller. And it was stressful both trying to get out the door in the morning and returning to the hotel in the evening to make the shuttle on time. (We were staying in Bonnet Creek at a good neighbor hotel, which was otherwise great.) Trying to streamline a bit this trip. Staying right on the Monorail seems really appealing, but it would obviously add significantly to the cost of the trip. Is it worth the expense? Or would I be just as well served to stay elsewhere and rideshare to the parks?
Expensewise, staying elsewhere and using rideshare to get around mostly leaves me ahead. But I have visions of popping back to the hotel after dinner in the parks, putting my 2yo to bed and leaving him with my husband, then zipping back with my 4yo in his jammies to MK/Epcot to catch the fireworks before he goes to bed.
So. Monorail resort with small children. I'd love your thoughts!
 

Dawn Peterson

Mouseketeer
Joined
Dec 30, 2018
We stayed Contemporary our first trip and it was amazing walking to MK and being able to push the stroller back at night. Other parks are not as easy to get to though. They suffer the same Disney Bus transportation issues. That being said, if it is within budget I would recommend it. We generally try to stay at a location where we can walk to one park. If you had said you wanted HS I would have recommended Yacht Club because of 2 parks.
 
  • ClapYourHands

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Mar 2, 2018
    Price it out. The monorail hotels are much more expensive than if you stayed elsewhere, but the convenience factor is huge.

    Look at the price of the monorail hotel, and then look at the cost of another hotel that interests you. Is the convenience worth the cost? Given your financial state, is the price difference no big deal to you, or does it represent something else you’d be giving up?

    I pulled a random week in the summer with good availability and discounts. The monorail resorts were about $500/night, and for comparison, CBR was $265, and Pop was $162, both on the skyliner for easy Epcot access.

    Over 5 nights, the difference between staying monorail vs CBR is about $1175, and the difference between monorail and Pop is about $1690. Obviously this will change somewhat based on when you go, but it’s a good rough estimate.

    Is popping back for naps on MK days worth that to you? With the skyliner, you could probably pop back and forth pretty easily on Epcot days, and AK will require buses, no matter your hotel choice. The skyliner would also allow you to take your son to HS for fireworks easily while your husband stays in the room with your youngest.

    With two kids that age needing car seats, you are going to be limited to Minnie Vans rather than a regular Uber/Lyft, so factor that in to the costs as well.
     

    Silvermist999

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Feb 6, 2010
    Definitely stay at a monorail resort. We always stay on the monorail line, even though our children are now older than yours. It is so convenient to go back to the resort for an afternoon nap or a swim. Plus you can easily hop on to go to the other monorail resorts for dining. Well worth it, if it is within your budget!
     

    ainswokp

    Earning My Ears
    Joined
    Dec 22, 2019
    Last October we did a trip with the exact same ages as your children. We did 4 nights Poly, 4 nights Beach Club. The monorail is key for the double stroller, although don't sleep on the fact that at certain times it is a long trip with wait times and/or full cars even just getting from MK to the hotel. I actually think it was more convenient to stay at the Beach Club as being on top of Epcot was a huge advantage, and if you don't mind a mile or so walking the back path to Hollywood is doable. Plus you can access the monorail through Epcot to MK if you have hoppers. If you do stay monorail and all you care about is convenience, I would do Contemporary for the walkability.
     

    KayaWildfire

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Oct 4, 2016
    Whether it would be worth it is a personal decision, it would be a tough pill for us to swallow financially as we usually stay at one of the All Stars, but one of the monorail resorts is absolutely more convenient. However, if you stay on disney property you won't have to worry about the bus timing as much because those buses run roughly every 20 minutes an hour plus before the park opens to 2 hours or so past the park closing. There isn't a specific schedule and you won't get stuck somewhere. This obviously won't solve the double stroller and bus situation, but it is something to think about. I wouldn't do rideshare with kids that small, then you have to have two car seats and a double stroller.
     
  • ainswokp

    Earning My Ears
    Joined
    Dec 22, 2019
    Agree on the ride share comment. Also, the Minnie vans are very expensive, or at least they were when I was there in October.
     

    Meglen

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Jul 16, 2016
    Which park is you go to? If you like mk go monorail if you like Epcot and HS than go Epcot area and use the skyliner.
     

    _19disnA

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Aug 8, 2018
    It mostly depends on your budget and which parks you plan to do. Magic Kingdom has a walkway to the Contemporary so you don't have to take any transportation. Any of the monorail resorts also enable you to get to Epcot with a transfer at the Transportation Center. Some people like the Disney bus system, others don't.
     

    MrsSLF

    Mouseketeer
    Joined
    Apr 26, 2017
    We love staying at the Poly because of quick access to the MK and the TTC for Epcot. We also love the ambience of the resort and that we truly feel like we're on vacation when we stay there. You can always look at renting DVC points, depending on when you're planning the trip to make the cost of the resort less. We've only stayed at the Poly and GF on the Monorail as we don't have much interest in the Contemporary. Oh, and the only time we've really had an issue with transportation is when returning from AK. That wait usually drives me bonkers because it feels like there are buses for every resort except ours (that, and the bus for AK is shared, which I find perplexing considering the high costs of staying at the deluxe resorts).
     
  • NickC

    Mouseketeer
    Joined
    Mar 15, 2018
    We like The Contemporary. Being able to walk to MK is worth a lot to us. Even if you were at the other monorail resorts, getting on the monorail after the fireworks would still be a pain. We always skipped the fireworks at MK because we didn't want to deal with the crowds. The theming at Contemporary isn't as extravagant as the other resorts, BUT the rooms are nice sized, which would give your husband more space to work if needed.
     

    Ben E N

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Jul 14, 2017
    Not sure how far out your trip is, but if it is still a while from now, look into DVC rentals from a place like David's. You can get a room next to any monorail resort for about 60-70% the cost of the hotel rooms.
     

    SG131

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Apr 3, 2017
    If you can swing it, it is 100% worth it if you plan to focus most of your time on MK. I loved the garden wing rooms at the contemporary and walking to the park is nice. Poly is nice plus you can walk to the transportation and ticket center for the monorail directly to epcot, but will likely add a great deal to the cost. There is a much better chance of a discount at the contemporary.
     

    LSUmiss

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Sep 8, 2014
    We had a bad experience in July at poly. Monorail was down often & busses were packed. I wouldn’t choose Contemporary. We had stayed a poly many times before had a bad experience the last trip. For this trip, we decided to stay at pop & take Minnie vans most of the time.
     

    winnieofpooh

    Mouseketeer
    Joined
    May 30, 2018
    Someone can correct me if I'm wrong, but I don't think you can get on the skyliner with a double stroller without folding it up. So just keep that in mind.
     

    thanxfornoticin

    Mouseketeer
    Joined
    Feb 12, 2020
    With kids that young and plans to frequent the MK, it's definitely a big plus being on the monorail loop, obviously. When our kids were younger, we even found it to be a plus for travel to EPCOT on the monorail. And you also have the boat available to get you to MK.
     

    MrsSLF

    Mouseketeer
    Joined
    Apr 26, 2017
    Oh, and we never really wait for HEA at MK because we've seen it already and that was enough (for the projections on Cinderella Castle) that being able to be back at our hotel to watch them always worked out well. They pipe in the music and you can see the fireworks themselves from the beach. That to me is perfect because I'd generally rather not deal with massive crowds when I don't have to.
     

    Rory607

    Mouseketeer
    Joined
    Sep 10, 2016
    We stayed at the Poly for the first time on our last trip. 100% worth it if you can swing it! I would personally find it tricky to fold the stroller and wrangle two small kids alone, which makes the monorail so appealing. And it’s definitely easy to get to MK from there. We also used the boat a lot, as well as the monorail.
     

    Rory607

    Mouseketeer
    Joined
    Sep 10, 2016
    Oh, and we never really wait for HEA at MK because we've seen it already and that was enough (for the projections on Cinderella Castle) that being able to be back at our hotel to watch them always worked out well. They pipe in the music and you can see the fireworks themselves from the beach. That to me is perfect because I'd generally rather not deal with massive crowds when I don't have to.
    Yes, this is another pro for Poly. We could see the fireworks and the water electrical pageant from our patio. It was amazing.
     




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