2013 Resort Hotel Price Changes at Walt Disney World
By Dave Shute
Walt Disney World’s 2013 prices came out last week, and as usual on average they’ve gone up.
The only big deal for first time visitors is the switch of the third week of December 2013 from Fall Season to the Peak Season, raising hotel prices that week 25-50%.
But there’s some other interesting and unusual features to Disney World’s 2013 prices (actual reductions; effective reductions; new seasons; changes in the traditional dates of old seasons), so what follows analyses 2013 price changes at Walt Disney World resort hotels compared to 2012 by resort price class.
VALUE RESORT 2013 PRICE CHANGES: POP CENTURY EXAMPLE
However, when you adjust to this site’s 8 night itineraries, and back out the $10/night charge for refrigerators that’s now gone, for all major seasons prices are either barely up or lower than 2012. But three 2013 weeks have been re-seasoned compared to 2012, and as a result, their prices are peppered.
Pop Century has 14 price seasons, and on a strict comparison of 2012 season prices vs. 2013 season prices, prices go up between 4.3% (Peak Weekday) and 12.1% (Value 2 Weekend).
The arithmetical (that is, un-weighted for season length) average increase is 7.5%.
However, Pop prices in 2013 include a mini-refrigerator for no additional charge. During much of 2012 (and in all prior years) refrigerators were only available for an additional charge of $10 per night.
This site’s To-Do Lists directed people to rent these refrigerators.
If you value the now-free fridges as an effective $10 per night price reduction, 2013 Pop Century prices are actually lower than 2012 for this site’s 8 night itineraries for every major season except the Easter and Holiday seasons—and even in those, increases are less than 1.1%.
On the other hand, the 2013 Value 2 Season is two weeks shorter than in 2012 (replaced with two more Fall Season weeks). The affected weeks—in the second half of September—are now priced about 18% higher than 2012 in result.
Moreover, as noted here, the 2013 post-Thanksgiving Fall Season is one week shorter—replaced with one week of peak season beginning December 13, 2013. The effective price change compared to the equivalent 2012 week is almost 50% higher prices for that week. Ouch.
MODERATE RESORT 2013 PRICE CHANGES: CARIBBEAN BEACH EXAMPLE
Caribbean Beach’s 2013 changes are less complicated than Pop’s.
Caribbean Beach also has 14 price seasons, and on a strict comparison of 2012 season prices vs. 2013 season prices, price changes range from a reduction of 4.3 percent (Summer Weekend, the only reduction) to an increase of 6.5% (Regular Weekend).
Adjusted to reflect this site’s 8 night, 3 weekend night itineraries, and focused just on the major seasons, price increases range from basically unchanged (Summer, with an 0.2% increase) to 5.3% more (Regular).
The arithmetical average increase is 3.5%.
The summer change of just 0.2% is sensitive to the mix of weekdays and weekend days in a visit, since while as noted above Summer Weekend prices have dropped, Summer Weekday prices went up 3.2%.
The moderate resorts show the same reductions in value season and fall season weeks as noted in the Pop Century material above.
The effect at Caribbean Beach is to make the last two weeks of September 7% more expensive than the equivalent weeks in 2012, and the week beginning 12/14/2013 25% more expensive than the equivalent week in 2012.
DELUXE RESORT 2013 PRICE CHANGES: POLYNESIAN RESORT EXAMPLE
The Polynesian Resort has 16 price seasons in 2013.
On a strict comparison of 2012 season prices vs. 2013 season prices, price changes range from a reduction of 7.1 percent (Summer Weekend, a new season for the Deluxes; the reduction is compared to the Regular Weekend rates in effect during the equivalent 2012 dates) to an increase of 7.4% (Marathon, Thanksgiving).
The arithmetical average increase is 3.0%.
The price seasons for the deluxes over the summer have changed. Recent practice at the deluxes has been for the Regular Season to kick off 4 or 5 days after Easter, and to continue into mid-July. In 2013, the Deluxes add a Summer Season from after Memorial Day until mid-July.
Compared to the equivalent date 2012 Regular Season Prices, Poly Summer Season prices are 7.1% lower on weekends, but 1.9% higher on weekdays. So your actual change vs. 2012 is sensitive to the mix of weekday vs. weekend nights you book. For this site’s 8 night itineraries, you’ll pay 1.6% less in the 2013 Summer season compared to the same dates in 2012.
I checked the 2013 summer prices for the Grand Floridian, Wilderness Lodge, Beach Club, and Animal Kingdom Lodge (savanna rooms; all other prices on this page are for standard rooms) and they show the same 2013 pattern as the Poly: each now has a summer season, and summer season weeknights are more expensive, but summer season weekends less expensive, than last year, netting to less expensive than 2012.
The deluxes do not show the loss of value season weeks in September that the moderates and values do, but they do have the same swap of Peak for Fall prices in the third week of December. As a result, the week beginning 12/14/2013 is 28% more expensive at the Poly than the equivalent 2012 week.
MORE ON 2013 PRICE CHANGES AT WALT DISNEY WORLD
For more on 2013 prices and value at Walt Disney World, see this.