The Caribbean Beach Resort Review, Spoiler…Never Again!

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Let me start off by saying I was super excited about staying at the Caribbean Beach Resort with other travelers loving their experiences. Perhaps I elevated it too high in my head and set it up to fail. Hopefully we can deliver some thoughts that help you decide between Caribbean Beach Resort and other moderate resorts.

We didn?t love the Caribbean Beach Resort?.at all?.like not even a little?.why? You ask. Let?s jump right in.

The Good About Caribbean Beach Resort

The price point is extremely attractive. I am sure that is why many of you are reading this article now. Well, we predict with the overhaul of the resort areas and the looming completion of the Gondola system that this resort will soon get a new pricing structure. We paid $229 per night and paired it with a Deluxe Dining Plan…which we almost always do. That was about the only good thing I can say about the resort. That?s 2 things…price…and dining plan access. Note: it was unseasonably cold for our November trip. We?re talking 40 degrees some days. With that being said, the pool did look amazing. I?d want to work in some time to go to the pool if it were warm weather season.

The Bad About Caribbean Beach Resort

First, the location isn?t bad but it wasn?t great either. It was nestled neatly off the main road near Epcot and near Hollywood Studios.

The resort is YYYUUUUUUUGE…yes, huge. From the moment we arrived on site we were boggled with turns and curves, just to find the check in point. Yes, there are signs but this experience is different than most of the other resorts we?ve stayed at. Upon check in, there was no one out front to welcome us, no one at the luggage/bag check, no one, anywhere. We had already gone through early check in with app (days before, and listed our arrival time in the app) My wife went on in to activate our dining plan and such. Someone did finally show up. The person was very nice and took care of our luggage. We left for the parks (after seeing where our unit was located so that when we arrived later in the dark that we would know where to go ? which also leads me to say that we ?checked in? before the room was ready, which we normally do). Jump back to resort that night after an awesome day in the parks…still optimistic even though the process of check in was less than optimal. There were entire rows (the first 2 rows) of parking just blocked with cones. Leaving very little parking for a giant resort. We found a parking spot. Found our room…eventually. Even though we had found the building earlier that day, the room, on the other hand was still a bit difficult to get to. We get in the room with no trouble via our magic bands and call for our luggage. The luggage takes about 35 minutes to get to the room. I understand this a large resort and it probably took that much time to load it, drive to us, and hike to our room. No complaints…just factor that into your planning. Our kids were exhausted and ready for bed but we had to wait for our clothes. Next time, we?ll have a small bag just for post park day baths and pajamas ready to go in from the car with us.

About the Resort and Rooms

I thought, I?ll run over to the Old Port Royale (the main dining area, resort services, pool, general store, etc). Ok, so from our room it was a 20 minute walk to that area, which due to the layout of the resort would have been quite the drive as well…pick your poison. I bought $7 water, got our resort cups and trekked back.

The rooms were disappointing. The ?resort refurbishment? either missed our room or the execution of the refurbishment was lacking. Either way, disappointing. There was very little storage for our family of 5. The bathroom has very little extra space to offer. There is a clothing rod with one shelf above it in that area. The footprint of the room was similar to all the other resorts we stayed in but overall it felt smaller.

The drive to the parks wasn?t too bad but wasn’t great either. We had pretty much expected this due to being a moderate resort. But there are resorts closer, even moderate ones.

The lower price point means way more people to deal with. This was particularly an issue at ?check-in? (activating our dining plan) and at ?check out?. Fun note: If you don?t charge anything to the room you can simply not go through the burden of ?check out?…just leave. Yeah, that was fun to learn after standing in line for about 45 minutes. It was expected to have more ?negatives? to deal with at a moderate resort. The realization of the expectations was still not fun. Plan extra time into your days when you have to go through areas like check in, resort services, eating, etc.

What Disney has to say about Caribbean Beach Resort

Official Disney Website Info
Official Disney Website Rates

Caribbean Beach Resort versus Port Orleans Riverside.

We are writing about our recent stay at Port Orleans currently for an upcoming post. But let?s give you the overview for those of you trying to decide between the two. Port Orleans had the same size room but it felt larger, the color scheme was more relaxing, it was nestled in the middle of nature, the room seemed cleaner, overall it felt like less people and there was ample parking and the resort was easy to navigate. There were beignets served onsite…enough said. They are virtually the same price. We will definitely be staying onsite with Port Orleans in the future.

A video about Port Orleans Resort

Is It Worth It to Stay at Caribbean Beach Resort?

We say no. The price point is not worth the extra large resort, the extra people, and the extra driving when other resorts are suitable alternatives. That?s not even taking into account the room itself, which we weren?t fans of – even though the sizes are pretty much the same in all moderate resorts.

See our other resort reviews here.

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  • Amy says:

    We have stayed twice at Caribbean Beach & loved it. In fact, I recently booked our next trip at Ft Wilderness, then my kids talked me into changing it to Caribbean Beach. Our second trip was during construction. I was given a gift card for $525 to make up for it. The only negative at that time was that it seemed as if there were less busses for CB. Looking forward to the Skyliner this trip.

    • Dave says:

      Thanks for the comment! We stayed during construction as well but it didn’t impact us too much and we did not get a gift card….that would have been awesome!!! Good job scoring that! Was it freely given or given in response to you having an issue? Now that the skyliners are up (most of the time anyway…) we may give it another try during the warmer months. You aren’t the first to tell us they loved it. Thanks!!!!

  • PegP says:

    Wow! Such negativity! It sounds like you didn’t do any research before booking at the Caribbean. Yes, it’s a sprawling resort, but so is Port Orleans Riverside, Coronado Springs (both moderates), Saratoga Springs & Old Key West (both DVC villas). Even looking at one picture of a room should have clued you in that it wasn’t a big room for five people. And the rooms at Port Orleans French Quarter (with the beignets) aren’t any bigger, only the resort is. That’s the smallest resort on property. And FYI, you won’t get your luggage any quicker at any other resort. You aren’t the only one staying there. They have to deliver to many guests across the resort.

    The distance from the parks is not that off from the other moderates, unless you stay at Ft Wilderness. It’s less than 1/2 mile farther than Riverside to Magic Kingdom and is actually closer to Epcot & Hollywood Studios than any of the other moderates. Coronado Springs is the only moderate that’s closer to Animal Kingdom than Caribbean. So I’m not sure what your beef about location was about.

    I’d suggest next time you visit Disney (at any resort) you pay the extra cost of getting a preferred room so you won’t have to walk as much to the food court. Even better, research the various resorts so you can see how big the rooms are, how sprawling the resort might be, what will be closed for refurbishments, and so on. You’ll have a much happier experience if you’re not expecting something a resort isn’t equipped to deliver, and people reading your reviews will get a more accurate (and fair) review.

    Most people read reviews for accuracy – stating the good & the bad. This was just how bad it was without anything good to say, which was surprising. And even most of the bad points weren’t fair or legitimate ones. It just sounded like you wanted a white collar resort at blue collar prices and was ticked off that you didn’t get that.

    • Dave says:

      Wow! Thanks for the comment. We are not snobby by any means. We are quite the opposite of a “no research” type of family. We decided to give it a chance and were disappointed. Based off our research we thought it would be a great fit. It was not. We may have built it up to be better than it was before even arriving. We give honest reviews and usually love everything about Disney. This one was a disappointment. We’ve stayed at a ton of Disney resorts, non-Disney resorts and even own a DVC. Our request for luggage was at midnight and took a while…for whatever reason…busy…time of day…whatever. We communicated that to our readers. We’ve never had issues getting luggage in a timely manner no matter the time…even during peak season at moderate resorts.

      We always pay the extra cost for a preferred room. And in this case it still didn’t work out. We would have talked to guest services about it but it wasn’t necessary as it was a short stay in conjunction with a special ticket event.

      We do appreciate the time you took to read and comment but we don’t agree with your analysis. Our review was accurate to our stay. It doesn’t have to lineup with your expectations our experiences. The bad points were perfectly legitimate to us…the ones who paid for it…

      We may give it another chance based off the Gondolas but we will see. Tell us more about what you did like about it.

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