How to Use Orbitz to Book Disney Hotels: Save Up To 50% & Still Get Disney Benefits!

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UPDATE: Disney resorts are back on Orbitz after not being able to be booked for several months at the end of 2016!

If you are looking for creative ways to save money on a Walt Disney World vacation, here is one of my top suggestions. I have used this strategy MANY times and have saved hundreds of dollars!

In a nutshell, it is possible (and pretty easy) to stack two discounts on top of each other for Disney World resort hotel reservations when you book on Orbitz.com. With both discounts, you can get up to 50% off of the regular prices of Disney World hotel rooms!

How to Save Up To 50% on Disney Hotels With Orbitz Discounts!

Disney’s Port Orleans French Quarter

First, this applies to what are called “room-only” resort hotel reservations at Walt Disney World, FL. This trick won’t work with package deals, which typically include a park ticket and dining plan. Packages have to be booked with a travel agent (I suggest the excellent agents over at Destinations in Florida) or directly with Disney, so no luck grabbing extra savings on those.

However, room-only reservations STILL get you all of the incredible perks of staying at a Disney-owned resort, such as free transportation to/from the airport and around the parks, Extra Magic Hours, Magic Bands for everyone in your party, etc. Plus, you can get all of these perks even if you book your stay through a site such as Orbitz, though it does take a few extra steps.

Stacking Two Discounts for the Best Rate

Disney almost always offers a discount on room-only reservations

Why would you book through Orbitz instead of booking with Disney, you say? Well, to save money of course. ūüėČ

Disney World almost always is offering some discount (aka “special offers”) on room-only resort reservations. The discounts range from 15% to 35% off the standard “rack” rate. You can find the current discounts¬†available directly from Disney here.

I suggest reviewing the current Disney discounts before you begin planning a trip. Note the dates of the current discounts and which resorts have the best discount. But please don’t book these rooms directly with Disney! Let me show you how to save even more.

Save 15% on select hotels: GETAWAY

Orbitz almost always offers a promo code for a percentage off hotel reservations booked on their site. The discounts range from 10 to 20% off – you can find the latest codes here.

These codes frustrate many people because their discounts do not apply to most major hotel chains. However, these promo codes DO apply to all Disney-owned resorts!

The discount can be used on top of the Disney-released discounts I mentioned above, essentially saving you up to 50% off the price of a Disney resort hotel stay. You can also use Orbitz Rewards currency, called “Orbucks”, to save even more (I’ll explain all about that later).

So first I will show you how to find Disney resorts on Orbitz and tell if the rate includes a Disney-released discount or not. Then I’ll show you how to apply an Orbitz promo code to save even more. Last I will show you the few extra steps you’ll have to take to get all of the benefits that come with staying at a Disney-owned resort, even if you book through Orbitz.

Booking a Disney Resort on Orbitz 

2016-02-07 06_33_01-Hotels, Hotel Rooms, Discount Hotel Rates & Cheap Motels on Orbitz

First, head to Orbitz.com and search within Orlando, FL for some possible travel dates – but at the bottom of the search window add the word “Disney” within the search for hotel name. This will narrow your results down to mostly Disney-owned resorts.¬†For my examples below I’ve priced a five-night stay at Disney’s Coronado Springs Resort (a Moderate resort) in May 2016.

P.S. Disney resort hotel prices fluctuate wildly during the course of a year – check out my post of the best times of year to visit Disney World to find the most affordable times to visit!

Once you find a resort that interests you on Orbitz, here is how to check if the price on Orbitz includes a Disney discount. It used to be easy (they stated if there was a Disney discount included right in the room description), but now you have to do a little legwork.

2016-02-12 15_04_26-Orbitz_ Payment

When you click through to book a room, you’ll see a total for the trip on the page where you enter your payment info. Take a moment to compare the total amount with the rack rates for the resort found on MouseSavers.com. For the example above, the price per night at Coronado Springs works out to $166/night. When I check on MouseSavers, I see that the rack rate for this time of year is $222/night. So this room definitely includes a Disney discount!

You may also notice in the booking details that these reservations include “Free Cancellation”. What this actually means is that Orbitz won’t charge you anything at all to change or cancel your reservation, however the cancellation policy of the hotel itself still applies. ¬†Luckily, room-only reservations with Disney have a pretty friendly change/cancellation policy – you can cancel your reservation up to 6 days before check-in without any penalty at all. If you cancel within 6 days of check-in, you will forfeit one night’s room rate.

2016-02-12 15_04_26-Orbitz_ Payment

When you go to checkout and pay for your reservation, you’ll find one (or several) places where you can enter a promo code. Be sure to enter the code and confirm the savings before you pay. Note the promo code savings circled above in red. I’ll take an extra $110.80 off, thank you very much!

2016-02-12 15_20_59-Disney's Coronado Springs Resort (Lake Buena Vista, United States of America) _

When you select a room you will also notice that you will earn “Orbitz Rewards” on the booking when you sign up for a free Orbitz Rewards account. ¬†This amount (equal to a 3% back) can be used on any future trip booked on Orbitz.

“Orbucks” (the currency of Orbitz rewards) are wonderful because they are SO easy to earn and use. Your Orbucks are just applied to¬†the next trip you book on Orbitz – no hoop-jumping, code entering, nothing.

2016-02-09 15_28_27-www.orbitz.com - My Account_ My Orbitz Rewards

While 3% doesn’t seem like much to write home about, I have been able to earn $512.81 in Orbucks in the past few years in a few creative ways! I earned $110 in free Orbucks through this promotion and have earned a few hundred by completing Best Price Guarantee claims. So this program has the potential to lower the total price of a trip to Disney World quite a bit!

In summary, the standard rack rate for the five-night stay at Coronado Springs is $1,110. With both discounts (25% off from Disney and 15% off from Orbitz) and Orbitz rewards, the price falls to $695. It may entail some work, but that discount is worth it, at least to me.

Additional Steps to Get All of Your Disney Perks

As I already mentioned, one compelling reason to stay at a Disney-owned resort is the impressive list of perks. If you book a room-only reservation with Orbitz as opposed to Disney, you’ll still get all of the perks, though you’ll have to take a few more steps.

In order to link your reservation to the My Disney Experience system, you’ll need a Disney-issued confirmation number for your reservation. This number used to be included in the email confirmation from Orbitz, bu in my experience it no longer is. I have had to¬†give Orbitz a call at 844-663-2266 and ask that they please provide me with the¬†Disney confirmation number. They put me on hold, call Disney and get the number, then share it with me.

Next head over to your My Disney Experience page¬†and you’ll see a button to Link a Resort Reservation or Vacation Package. Click that, then enter the Disney Confirmation Number, and you are all set!

2016-02-06 16_02_38-MagicBands _ Walt Disney World Resort

Here’s one other quirky thing – when you go to personalize your Magic Bands in your My Disney Experience account (which you need to do 30 days before your arrival), you will have to update the address to which the bands will ship. You’ll see the address for Orbitz (in Chicago, IL), so just click the Change Address button and update it with your address!

Lastly, if you are flying into Orlando, you’ll want to take advantage the complimentary transfers on Disney Magical Express. After you have the flight information for everyone in your party (you’ll just need names, flight numbers and travel dates), head over to the Magical Express Reservation site to make your reservation. I’ve had some trouble using the Chrome browser with this form, so I would suggest a different browser. Or you can call¬†866-599-0951¬†to make your reservation over the phone. You will receive your luggage tags and info in the mail a few weeks before your trip!

I hope this post helped explain the steps to booking a Disney World room-only reservation with an Orbitz discount. Please leave a comment on this post if you have any questions and I would be glad to help. Three cheers for saving money at the most magical place on Earth!


36 Responses to How to Use Orbitz to Book Disney Hotels: Save Up To 50% & Still Get Disney Benefits!

  1. Kristen says:

    Hi!

    I see the responses indicating you have to book through Disney to be eligible to take advantage of the free dining. What I was curious about is the discount offered on select rooms. We are planning a trip in December of this year. Can I book through Orbitz before the room discounts are made available and then contact Disney to get the rate adjusted as I have read if booked through Disney directly? Or do you have to book directly with Disney to get that benefit as well? I’m new to the whole world of not booking through Disney. Thanks!

    • Leah says:

      Hi Kristen!

      Booking through a third party such as Orbitz is a little different. You can’t make any changes to a reservation after you have booked, like you can with Disney. To get both discounts, you have to wait until both Disney and Orbitz have released promotions for your travel dates, then book. If you are traveling during a busy time of year (such as around Christmas) this may leave you with less availability than you’d like. I hope that answered your question!

  2. Tracey says:

    Hi I was wondering if orbitz would be able to obtain the CBR special that is offering $75/day gift cards to vacationers staying there while under refurbishment?

    • Leah says:

      I read about that offer yesterday, Tracey, and I think that you would receive the gift card if you booked with Orbitz. You can book Disney hotels through many many different outlets and I can’t imagine they would be able to discriminate against those who booked with a third party and not directly with Disney. But I do think they will only offer the gift cards for a short while, so I wouldn’t count on getting them well into the summer. Just my thoughts!

  3. Cathy says:

    Thanks so much for this information! I saved just under $50 for 3 nights at a value resort. I did have to call Orbitz for the confirmation number (most of the call was spent on hold while they contacted Disney), but was able to link it in the app after that. I have done a lot of reading about WDW, and I think this is the only post I saw that mentions using Orbitz. You explained it so well. Thank you!

    • Leah says:

      Thank you so much for the update and for your encouraging words, Cathy! That’s great savings and I’m glad you were able to get your confirmation number over the phone.

  4. Fabiola says:

    After booking with orbitz could I buy a dining plan and tickets to add to my trip? And how can I do that?

    • Leah says:

      Hi Fabiola! You can add tickets to your trip after you link your reservation to your My Disney Experience account. You’ll just need your Disney confirmation number, which may be in the email confirmation you receive from Orbitz, or you may need to call Orbitz to get it if it isn’t. Unfortunately, you can’t add a dining plan to a reservation booked through a third party such as Orbitz. Your best bet is to book a package directly through Disney or through a Disney travel agent.

  5. Candice App says:

    Okay so just to be clear, If I booked my room through Orbitz and linked my resort reservation then at a later time if the free dining offer comes out for the fall could I use the Disney site to add the dining plan with park tickets and it be free? Just trying to see if there is a way around it to get both discounts by buying resort room at Orbitz and using the Disney site to turn it into a package?

    • Leah says:

      Unfortunately, no, you can’t change a room-only reservation booked through Orbitz into a package reservation once you add it to My Disney Experience. If you book with Orbitz you can only make changes through Orbitz and they don’t offer free dining packages. ūüôĀ If there was a way to get both free dining AND a discounted room I would be all over it! But for now there isn’t… you just have to do some math if and when the free dining offer is released to see if the better deal is had in both discounts with Orbitz OR booking a free dining package with Disney/travel agent. Thanks for reading, Candice!

  6. Jenn says:

    I’ve been planning to book a room through orbitz by the 29th since the current orbitz promo code ends then. In the last 3 days though, suddenly the rooms listed on orbitz aren’t showing the Disney discount. I don’t know why, since the Disney discount can be booked through March. I know Disney recently had a problem with their website and booking wasn’t available. I thought maybe that was the problem but it seems to have been resolved on Disney’s website so I don’t know what to do now.

    • Leah says:

      Hi Jenn, Orbitz will release a new promo code that is almost certain to be for 15% off when the current one expires on the 29th. The lack of Disney discounts is caused either by a glitch with Disney or the fact that all of the discounted rooms are sold out (there are only a set number of rooms available at a discount). Either way, I suggest waiting a few days to book!

  7. Candice App says:

    Is it possible to get the free dining when booking room on Orbitz and linking to a Disney account?

    • Leah says:

      Hi Candice! You currently can’t book free dining packages on Orbitz or any similar site, just straight with Disney or through a Disney travel agent.

  8. Pauline says:

    Thank you so much for this post! I found it through Pinterest while I was looking for tips.
    While searching websites like booking.com and expedia.com, etc… I found that all the Walt Disney Hotels (on site) are always sold out, whatever date I choose.
    Did Disney change their pollicy on selling rooms trough websites like that?
    Greetings from Belgium! xx Pauline

    • Leah says:

      Hi Pauline!, Yes, for now it appears that the only way to book a room for 2017 is with Disney directly or with a Disney travel agent (I suggest Catherine at http://disneysolution.com ). However, I predict that Disney will begin to release rooms to online travel agencies (such as Orbitz) closer to 2017. It is still possible to book Disney rooms through the end of 2016 anywhere!

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  17. Brian says:

    Booked with Orbitz on 4/14/16. Saved $2000 on deluxe resort with magical kingdom view. Thanks. Have confirmation number but still not showing up with Disney as of 4/17/16. Should I call them or just wait? Trip not until July. Thanks

    • Leah says:

      That is fantastic, Brian! If you have your hotel confirmation number, you’ll have to add it to your My Disney Experience account yourself. Just navigate to the “My Reservations & Tickets” section in My Disney Experience (in the app or on the Disney World wesbite), then click on the button to “Link Resort Reservation”. You’ll be prompted for your confirmation number and name. Hope that helps!

    • Kasey says:

      I had to call Orbitz. The confirmation email changed and it no longer included the one I needed for Disney. Calling Orbitz took about 10 minutes then I was able to go to the Disney site to link.

      • Leah says:

        Thanks so much for the update, Kasey. I’ll update the blog post with this information since Orbitz is no longer including the Disney confirmation number in their emails. Hopefully they will go back to including the Disney number to make things easier on their customers!

    • Leah says:

      Brian – According to another reader, you may have to call Orbitz to get your Disney confirmation number. Their customer service number is 844-663-2266. Hope this helps!

      • Brian says:

        I will give them a call tomorrow. My email included itinerary # and confirmation # but it must not be right since Disney Experience doesn’t recognize it. I will let you know how it turns out. Thanks all.

        • Brian says:

          Called Orbitz this morning. At first they gave me same confirmation number I received in email. I told them it was not linking so they gave me a BOOKING ID #. All numbers no letters like confirmation # had. Anyway I went to Disney and entered booking #. Linked perfectly. All is great. Thanks Leah for helping me save big$$.

  18. Kasey says:

    I just booked a stay at Disney through Orbitz yesterday and there is no Disney confirmation number. While googling I came across your post! Do you get a second email with the Disney hotel confirmation number? Am I just being impatient?! THanks!

    • Leah says:

      Hi Kasey! So I went to my email and checked the most recent Disney reservation I made through Orbitz, and the hotel confirmation number was in the first confirmation email I received from Orbitz. It was located right below the Orbitz locator number. Now I know Orbitz recently merged with another travel company so their emails may be different now. If you can’t find a “hotel confirmation number” anywhere in that email I would give Orbitz a call to get the number.

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  20. LauraB says:

    Thanks to Leah’s advice, I’ve used this method to book rooms at Disney World several times and have saved money each time! We like to stay at Port Orleans, French Quarter which is not always included in the Disney discount, so taking a couple of extra minutes to compare prices, as Leah suggests, is worth it to see if the Orbitz discount alone is enough to stay there or if we should consider staying at another resort. I also had enough Orbucks last time to save even more money. My husband and I just returned from a magical trip in early February, and I’m already planning my next trip! I’ll definitely use Orbitz, or this time I might follow Leah’s suggestion of renting DVC points so we can perhaps stay a night or two in a more expensive resort!

    • Leah says:

      Wonderful, Laura! So glad you are able to put this advice into action to save on your trips to WDW! It really does work, just gotta give it a try, right? Thanks so much for your thoughtful comment. ūüôā