Polynesian, Wilderness, yet POP is the best !!!

DW Aficionado

Active Member
Original Poster
After visiting WDW every year for the past 25 years, I have to post to say that the POP Resort is better than the Polynesian or Wilderness Lodge.

At first we were going to the Polynesian. When that resort became too expensive we downgraded to the Wilderness Lodge. When they became too expensive we said lets try the POP, how bad could it be. Well it is amazing.

Polynesian Resort
Pros:
On the monorail loop
Great atmosphere till the cabanas blocked the view
Cons:
Have to walk potentially far to the snack area
Snack shop is limited
Buses to other parks can be filled as they first come from the Contemporary then to the Grand Floridian

Wilderness Lodge
Pros:
Beautiful design
Snack shop located inside the building
Cons:
Small rooms
Long interval between buses to other parks (20 minutes +)
Snack shop is limited

POP
Pros:
Cheaper in price
Nice efficient rooms
Snack shop has full menu for breakfast, lunch or dinner
Buses run continuously
Direct bus to the Magic Kingdom
Direct access to the Skyliner for EPCOT or Hollywood Studio
Cons:
No balcony
 

Tuvalu

Premium Member
Glad that you are happy with Pop Century. The Skyliner has been a game changer for that resort. However it does shut down frequently in summer for weather; then it is back to the bus. The bus stop for POP at the parks tends to be one of the furthest from the entrance, so some might consider that a negative.

I agree that the Poly bungalows are an eyesore but they do not block the entire view. The tropical vibe is still there, especially in the resort proper. The Polynesian shares buses to AK and DHS with the Grand Floridian and is the first picked up/dropped off. Getting a seat in the morning is not a problem.

Walking to the TTC from the Poly to the Epcot monorail is a huge plus. Both monorail and boat transportation to MK is available and once the DVC tower construction is complete, walking to MK will be an option.

Wilderness Lodge rooms are smaller than other deluxe resort rooms because it was built to be a moderate. It’s why it has the lowest deluxe room rates.

I stay at WL several times a year and bus service is on par with other resorts. It has direct park transport in the morning. MK can be accessed by bus or boat. It shares buses to DHS and AK after the morning rush with Contemporary. It may or may not share the Epcot bus with Ft. Wilderness (depends on time of year.)

I am glad Disney made so many different resorts from which to choose. All resorts have pros and cons. Price is always a big consideration, so when deluxe resorts become too expensive for one’s budget it’s nice to have moderate and value resort options. I tend to be a positive person and look for the positives in each resort where I stay. I can be happy at any level WDW resort.
 

Skibum1970

Well-Known Member
Glad that you are happy with Pop Century. The Skyliner has been a game changer for that resort. However it does shut down frequently in summer for weather; then it is back to the bus. The bus stop for POP at the parks tends to be one of the furthest from the entrance, so some might consider that a negative.

I agree that the Poly bungalows are an eyesore but they do not block the entire view. The tropical vibe is still there, especially in the resort proper. The Polynesian shares buses to AK and DHS with the Grand Floridian and is the first picked up/dropped off. Getting a seat in the morning is not a problem.

Walking to the TTC from the Poly to the Epcot monorail is a huge plus. Both monorail and boat transportation to MK is available and once the DVC tower construction is complete, walking to MK will be an option.

Wilderness Lodge rooms are smaller than other deluxe resort rooms because it was built to be a moderate. It’s why it has the lowest deluxe room rates.

I stay at WL several times a year and bus service is on par with other resorts. It has direct park transport in the morning. MK can be accessed by bus or boat. It shares buses to DHS and AK after the morning rush with Contemporary. It may or may not share the Epcot bus with Ft. Wilderness (depends on time of year.)

I am glad Disney made so many different resorts from which to choose. All resorts have pros and cons. Price is always a big consideration, so when deluxe resorts become too expensive for one’s budget it’s nice to have moderate and value resort options. I tend to be a positive person and look for the positives in each resort where I stay. I can be happy at any level WDW resort.

Hmm, the poster's name is "Tuvalu". BIASED!!!

Kidding. I agree. The various hotels really do fill different needs/wants for those who wish to stay onsite. I prefer the Wilderness Lodge and Port Orleans but see the appeal for all of the resorts. Contemporary might be expensive but I can easily walk to the Magic Kingdom, our favorite park. I have friends who love Epcot and the festivals and thus Beach Club/Boardwalk, and Yacht Club are perfect for them.

Each resort will have its negatives as well. The value resorts are heavily utilized by the various competition groups. The moderates may not have the level of theming or interior hallways. The deluxes get expensive. I'm sure others can nitpick the resorts or add other benefits. We just try to enjoy wherever we stay.
 

Cariad

Active Member
My only gripe with the Skyliner is the EPCOT station when it goes down and you get there and are expected to go back into the park walk all the way to the front entrance to get a bus there. I ended up taking the boat to DHS and if it wasn't running there either then take the bus as it's not so far to walk to and you get a nice boat ride to boot.
You would think Disney could send out alerts about the Skyliner going down to prevent guests walking to it only to find it had gone down.
 

Tuvalu

Premium Member
My only gripe with the Skyliner is the EPCOT station when it goes down and you get there and are expected to go back into the park walk all the way to the front entrance to get a bus there. I ended up taking the boat to DHS and if it wasn't running there either then take the bus as it's not so far to walk to and you get a nice boat ride to boot.
You would think Disney could send out alerts about the Skyliner going down to prevent guests walking to it only to find it had gone down.
Little known tip - if the IG Skyliner is closed walk to Beach Club (or Boardwalk, though I haven’t tried Boardwalk) bus area. A “Skyliner Resort” bus picks up guests and makes stops at Pop, AoA, CBR and Riviera. No need to walk back through Epcot to the front of the park. I imagine protocol is to send guests to the front since the front bus areas can accommodate many more people than the small resort stops at Beach/Boardwalk.
 

Disstevefan1

Well-Known Member
After visiting WDW every year for the past 25 years, I have to post to say that the POP Resort is better than the Polynesian or Wilderness Lodge.

At first we were going to the Polynesian. When that resort became too expensive we downgraded to the Wilderness Lodge. When they became too expensive we said lets try the POP, how bad could it be. Well it is amazing.

Polynesian Resort
Pros:
On the monorail loop
Great atmosphere till the cabanas blocked the view
Cons:
Have to walk potentially far to the snack area
Snack shop is limited
Buses to other parks can be filled as they first come from the Contemporary then to the Grand Floridian

Wilderness Lodge
Pros:
Beautiful design
Snack shop located inside the building
Cons:
Small rooms
Long interval between buses to other parks (20 minutes +)
Snack shop is limited

POP
Pros:
Cheaper in price
Nice efficient rooms
Snack shop has full menu for breakfast, lunch or dinner
Buses run continuously
Direct bus to the Magic Kingdom
Direct access to the Skyliner for EPCOT or Hollywood Studio
Cons:
No balcony
Cant argue against the facts 😃👍
 

LivFreeorDisney

Well-Known Member
A con for POP is the food option. Being a DVC member and staying at the deluxe resorts, I like having multiple dining choices over the one caf that the POP has. The POP rooms are also smaller and can get tight with a family of four. We did a school trip in February and found the room filled up quickly with us and our luggage in the room.

I enjoyed the theming of the resort and the larger than life design around the buildings. It's a big difference from what you get at the deluxe resorts, and made for some great photo ops. The Skyliner was great and relaxing when returning at the end of a long day in the parks.
 

DW Aficionado

Active Member
Original Poster
A con for POP is the food option. Being a DVC member and staying at the deluxe resorts, I like having multiple dining choices over the one caf that the POP has. The POP rooms are also smaller and can get tight with a family of four. We did a school trip in February and found the room filled up quickly with us and our luggage in the room.

I enjoyed the theming of the resort and the larger than life design around the buildings. It's a big difference from what you get at the deluxe resorts, and made for some great photo ops. The Skyliner was great and relaxing when returning at the end of a long day in the parks.
OMG, I love the food at the POP, all at a reasonable price.
 

networkpro

Well-Known Member
In the Parks
Yes
A con for POP is the food option. Being a DVC member and staying at the deluxe resorts, I like having multiple dining choices over the one caf that the POP has. The POP rooms are also smaller and can get tight with a family of four. We did a school trip in February and found the room filled up quickly with us and our luggage in the room.

I enjoyed the theming of the resort and the larger than life design around the buildings. It's a big difference from what you get at the deluxe resorts, and made for some great photo ops. The Skyliner was great and relaxing when returning at the end of a long day in the parks.

Those food options at deluxe resorts are not always available, especially if they are half way decent food. Pop food isnt pretentious and it has the capacity to meet the demand in serving as well as seating.
 

DW Aficionado

Active Member
Original Poster
Those food options at deluxe resorts are not always available, especially if they are half way decent food. Pop food isnt pretentious and it has the capacity to meet the demand in serving as well as seating.
Exactly, it's good regular food.... I'm starting to thing that I'm just ordinary, and I don't need to spend $100.00 for a small piece of meat drizzled in who knows what. I'm all about the parks and having fun !!!!!
 

Ghostdog

Well-Known Member
After visiting WDW every year for the past 25 years, I have to post to say that the POP Resort is better than the Polynesian or Wilderness Lodge.

At first we were going to the Polynesian. When that resort became too expensive we downgraded to the Wilderness Lodge. When they became too expensive we said lets try the POP, how bad could it be. Well it is amazing.

Polynesian Resort
Pros:
On the monorail loop
Great atmosphere till the cabanas blocked the view
Cons:
Have to walk potentially far to the snack area
Snack shop is limited
Buses to other parks can be filled as they first come from the Contemporary then to the Grand Floridian

Wilderness Lodge
Pros:
Beautiful design
Snack shop located inside the building
Cons:
Small rooms
Long interval between buses to other parks (20 minutes +)
Snack shop is limited

POP
Pros:
Cheaper in price
Nice efficient rooms
Snack shop has full menu for breakfast, lunch or dinner
Buses run continuously
Direct bus to the Magic Kingdom
Direct access to the Skyliner for EPCOT or Hollywood Studio
Cons:
No balcony
We too LOVE Pop!! I agree with everything you said. Also, the bar at the main pool is awesome!
 

bwr827

Well-Known Member
I continue to be surprised by mentions of poorer bus service at the Deluxe resorts. I’d think it would be the other way around, or at least equivalent.

Pop was our first and only WDW resort experience. We thought it was perfect.

One added note worth mentioning: for food variety, Caribbean Beach is a quick Skyliner trip (and a bit of a walk after that).
 

Smiley/OCD

Well-Known Member
Two things I always like to add about POP…we’ve stayed there a half dozen times? Yup, the rooms are small(er), but our family doesn’t spend a whole lot of time in the resort…we’re in the parks…clean room, hot water, a good TV and we’re happy campers. Also, the resort is very user friendly.
Add us to the group that finds the food decent (we’re NOT foodies, per se), the pool is great and as much as I’m NOT a fan of the skyliner, the rest of the family IS.
I always loved POP for the amount of time we are actually there. We’d rather spend the $$ in the parks.
 
we just had our first POP stay last month and we loved it. we booked late and Caribbean Beach wasn't available so we thought we would try it. will definitely stay there again. We would often walk across the bridge to eat at AOA so you aren't just stuck with one food court. They do have some different menu items. I've never seen so many door and window decorations or "pixie dust" rooms at any other WDW hotel. We tend to stick with the moderate resorts but we've stayed at Beach Club and Boardwalk when we can find a decent deal because we like the Epcot proximity. Having the skyliner made all the difference but I do think they need to have a more updated system to let guests know when it's down due to weather (like via the app). Having to visually check it was a pain.
 

pelham304

New Member
Those food options at deluxe resorts are not always available, especially if they are half way decent food. Pop food isnt pretentious and it has the capacity to meet the demand in serving as well as seating.
I need to try the tie dye cheesecake if it’s still available! As a lover of all pop culture I know I would enjoy the theming at pop! I just always stay deluxe and worry I will not like it
 
In April I had a 5-day stay planned for the Boardwalk, and was lucky enough to get 2 days off of work before the trip, so to extend the trip I booked two nights at Pop Century to try something new and save some money...and I loved it almost as much. We're only 3 people so the smaller room was fine, I loved the kitchy theme of the place, liked how people decorated their windows, the food/shop was fine, and of course the Skyliner is great. If someone is doing a split stay, Pop would be a great choice for Epcot or Hollywood Studios days before moving to a Magic Kingdom resort.

The place just screams old-fashioned Disney fun. Like WDW was before they started laying the dreams/magic stuff on thick. I kept thinking in my mind that Pop is like the Main Street Electrical Parade (simple but fun and lighthearted) and the deluxes are like SpectroMagic (more dramatic and more bells and whistles but at times heavy-handed). Sometimes simple fun wins out.

Or maybe I just liked sitting at the computer pool, staring at a giant Roger Rabbit, with No Doubt and Foo Fighters blaring in the background.
 

Smiley/OCD

Well-Known Member
I need to try the tie dye cheesecake if it’s still available! As a lover of all pop culture I know I would enjoy the theming at pop! I just always stay deluxe and worry I will not like it
See, IMHO, if you go in with that preconceived notion, POP already has 2 strikes against it…go in with a 100% open mind and let the resort “talk to you” and let it sell its self to you. It’s NOT a deluxe…it’ll never pretend to be…if you spend a lot of time in your deluxe resort, you’ll obviously notice the difference.
My DW and I have stayed at the GF (too “frou frou” for me), but I LOVED Boardwalk and the convenience of it to Epcot and the skyliner but for my $$, POP is it!
 

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