Before we begin: I have no relationship with Priceline or Walt Disney World. I am not responsible if the systems or keywords change. I will try to update this post to the best of my ability, but please remember I am simply providing the information I used to book a resort and your mileage may vary.
Ok, now that’s out of the way…Did you know you can book a Walt Disney World Resort Hotel using Priceline Express deals and save a
What is Priceline Express?
Priceline Express is a blind purchase hotel site. You enter your location and dates, and they provide a list of hotel options. The name of the hotel is not provided. Instead, you’re shown the hotel class, approximate location, vague details about amenities, and a set price. Once you book, Priceline Express reveals the name of your hotel. All sales are final when using Priceline Express, so be EXTREMELY cautious when booking.
If the hotel names are hidden, how do you know you’re booking a Walt Disney World Resort Hotel?
Great question. Priceline Express uses certain keywords when describing the properties you can book. Thanks to people on the internet who are way better at this thing
So, where are these “keywords” and what are they?
When you’re looking at the properties listed for your date, simply click the “map” link, then click “details.” Keywords are listed here. As for the list, I won’t copy and paste the ones I’ve found online because I didn’t do the legwork to discover them, but the Disboards are a great place to find them.
For this example, “Enjoy kid-focused colorful, fun indoor and outdoor spaces here” are the keywords. Based on sleuthing from the Internet, we can assume this is Disney’s Art of Animation Resort. (again: nothing is ever guaranteed and you are taking a risk booking through a hidden site.)
You can also download the Google Chrome extension Canary. This extension uses matching software to give you their best guess on which resort Priceline Express is giving you.
I call shenanigans on this entire thing! There are zero Disney resorts listed for my vacation dates!
I know. It’s almost too good to be true. And, there’s no guarantee the resorts will pop up for your dates. I wouldn’t bank on being able to use this little trick for every trip. What I can say is more inventory seems to open up closer to the arrival date. If I were you, I’d book a backup plan with a refundable deposit and keep checking Priceline Express in the meantime. Remember, once you book through Priceline Express you are stuck with that reservation.
Do you still get normal guest perks when using Priceline Express?
Absolutely! You are still a Walt Disney World Resort guest and get all of the benefits you’d get booking directly through Disney. You can enter your reservation into My Disney Experience in order to customize Magic Bands, make FastPass+ selections, and share plans with Friends & Family.
Here’s where it gets a bit tricky, though:
Priceline Express Deals are meant for double occupancy reservations. When you reserve the room, you are paying for one or two guests. If you’re a family, you’ll need to call Disney’s reservation agents and see if they can add additional guests to your reservation. THERE MAY BE A FEE FOR THIS. It’s definitely a “your mileage may vary” situation. Some people have reported they’ve been able to add guests without charge and others were charged a fee per person, per night. Technically, they are supposed to charge you, so do not be surprised if you are (and do not take it out on the wonderful Cast Members…they didn’t make the rules.)
Any other last words of wisdom?
If you want to guarantee you’re booking a certain resort, book directly and get that resort. If you have your heart set on Disney’s Pop Century Resort, book it through Disney. If you aren’t sure your vacation dates will stay the same, book somewhere with a refundable deposit. If you’re traveling with a larger family or a group, book through Disney.
I can not stress this enough: there is ALWAYS a risk when booking through an opaque booking site and you are stuck with what you book. You have to be sure you’re okay with not getting exactly what you hoped for.
You can also sign up on the Priceline homepage to receive a 10% off coupon to save even more on your Walt Disney World Resort Hotel. Just think of all of the extra citrus swirls you can buy with these savings.