Ridesharing for the win for condo trips to DisneyWorld
We have brought our kids out here countless times over the years – always trying to cram in as much as we could while we have stayed. Many times we have even taken cruises just because ‘if we’re already all the way here (from the West Coast, we are based in Victoria, BC some 10–15 hour travel day away), then why not?’.
But the big reason to come to Orlando (Kissimmee actually…) is obviously the theme parks (DisneyWorld, Universal, Legoland, etc.).
For our first several trips, we always stayed on site at a Disney Property and we tried at least 8 of them (Pro Tip: Art of Animation is the sweet spot between fun/young family suites and budget). I recommend giving them a try, at least once. The benefits of staying at an actual Disney Resort include having a truly immersive/all Disney experience, walk-on/walk-off buses (even if you’ve just had a beer) and the periodic extra ‘magic hours’ so you can get in early or stay later and have the parks to yourselves.
That said … Disney Resorts are expensive (very expensive), cookie cutter and the food in the main eating areas is, well to be frank, awful. And after a few days of it, you’ll be sick of it and craving something simple like a ham sandwich. So again, once you’ve done it once or twice, you’ll probably be looking to try something different next time.
It was after that discovery that we realized we loved being in Florida for parts of every year (and we aim on being there more and more as we get older and the kids move into adulthood). So we started looking around at properties and fell in love with the Bahama Bay Resort. And while we only ever intended on having one 3 Bedroom Condo (which we called ‘Our Disney Place’), we ended up loving the process of setting up a condo and managing it (and meeting all sorts of interesting people), that we added a second 2 Bedroom Condo as well (and who knows … maybe by putting this into the universe, we might get a 3rd or find someone that wants us to help manage theirs).
So we gave up one of the benefits of being on a DisneyWorld resort or being on site and instead switched to separate bedrooms, full kitchen and laundry, access to 4 pools, 6 hot tubs and Caribbean themed paradise … and at a fraction of Disney costs.
Hey, isn’t this post about Ridesharing with Uber and Lyft?
Yep, I’m getting to it, keep yer shirt on. The one thing to know about Bahama Bay Resort is that it is roughly 20–25 minutes away by drive from DisneyWorld and the key parks and about 30 minutes away from Universal Studios. Renting a car used to be key but on our last two trips, outside of two days where we did a bunch of Lowes/Target runs to update our condos with new amenities, we’ve been using Uber and/or Lyft exclusively.
- We don’t use a car every day so paying to park a rental in the parking lot is poor use of our pocketbook
- If you rent a car from the airport, you are paying an even higher fee for airport taxes so you are getting screwed all the way (we fly in, having had a few bevvies on the plane and get safely delivered to our condo without worrying about driving under the influence)
- You have to pay to park, at the parks. Last time I looked, it was $25/day or $50 if you wanted premium (closer to the entrance) parking
- We can ‘play it by ear’ all vacation long. If I want to have a beer at a park, or a restaurant, I’m simply hailing an Uber or Lyft and getting in … I’m not planning my day, or my responsibilities around driving a car
- If the car is wrecked … it ain’t my car. I’m a good driver, others around me are out of my control
- For groceries and everything else in this modern age, there are (amazing) solutions. For example, we use Instacart for shopping at the nearby Publix. Delivery is like $4 and the groceries we order arrive typically within 2 hours of ordering … no fuss
So there you have it. Stay at our condos, consider ridesharing and Instacart and truly be on vacation. Oh, and use BOTH Uber and Lyft apps. The difference in pickup/price can vary A LOT per ride. Pick the best price, every time. That helps them stay competitive too.