Priceline Express Deals: Sailing Into the New Year

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It seems like just a few days ago I blogged about the deluge of deals that had arrived.  That’s because it was!

If you recall, Express Deals appeared all the way out to next Thanksgiving. You may also recall that each of you readers promised to buy me a Mickey Bar. (Hey, it might work!)

Sadly, soon after deals were dropped, Priceline pulled most of them back so that the ones currently available only run until the first week of March.

Happily, the deals do seem to be shifting around a bit and some very interesting new ones have appeared for Animal Kingdom Lodge and Yacht Club. (Boy, I’d love to stay at the Yacht Club. I’d even buy myself a skippers hat.)

Below are calendars for January and February that contain just these deals. There are still deals for other resorts out there, but you can still see the ones I found in last week’s January Deluge post.

Some Notes

  • As is often the case: some of the deals shown may require you to search for multiple days at once, or even a particular window of days for them to appear.
  • You will see some days of lower-priced deals followed by higher-priced ones. (See the Animal Kingdom Lodge deals for the week starting January 12, for example.)
  • The prices I recorded in these calendars are for blocks of days – many of them do not appear in single day searches. So, be aware the prices are averages and depend on where in the week you start your search.

I know that not all of the deals shown are low-priced, but I have included any that fall near better deals to help people get a better picture of what is out there.

Let us know in the comments if any of these deals are causing you to set sail on a trip! And also let me know if you find any good deals on skipper hats.

John Tierney

Security. Genealogy. Dad. Husband. Securigenealodadsband. Also: Disney fan who likes deals. and numbers. and churros. You can find his tweeter @JJT and his Instagram is @johnjtierney

16 thoughts on “Priceline Express Deals: Sailing Into the New Year

  • January 9, 2020 at 4:46 pm
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    I love these posts: thank you! They really get me dreaming.
    I am seriously considering a (relatively) impromptu trip in the last week of February/ first week of March. You mentioned seeing deals into the first week of March. Any worth tracking down? I’m coming-up empty. Thank you, thank you!

    Reply
    • January 9, 2020 at 8:07 pm
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      Hi Dottie, I’m glad you enjoy them! 🙂

      Priceline has been a little persnickety for the deals that in that first week of March: to get the deals to appear you need to search multiple days and your window needs to start on or around March 1st.

      For example, this deal for check in/out 3/1 to 3/6 is for Animal Kingdom Lodge for $277 a night. Deals come and go, so you might see more or less appear over time.

      Those AK Lodge deals in the last week in February seem to have gone away since yesterday – but you never know when they might reappear…

      Reply
  • January 9, 2020 at 6:17 pm
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    Hi I’m sure this is basic knowledge that I am missing in your posts but I read somewhere else that when getting express deals the room is only guaranteed for two people. Is this true? It was stated that you may or may not be able to add kids and if you get a king bed you won’t. Since all Disney resorts offer king beds is everyone who are booking these deals mostly solo travelers or just two people?

    Reply
    • January 9, 2020 at 8:22 pm
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      Hi Tabitha,
      I try to mention that info every few posts to remind people, but it may have been a couple since I brought it up. Yes – Priceline only guarantees room for 2. But, with the vast majority of Disney resort rooms accommodating 4 people, I believe it is much less of an issue than it likely is for other areas.

      Over the last 18 months or so I have communicated with quite a few people who have booked these deals, many of whom were families. I have not heard of anyone who had issues getting a room for 4. Sometimes there can be the usual Priceline-to-Disney issues where one or the other claims they can’t make changes to the reservation. But those issues are just the usual 3rd party thing and not related to asking for 4 people in a room.

      Most people report calling Disney Wholesale Department directly at 1-407-939-7671 is the easiest way to have kids added to the reservation.

      After that kinda long-winded response: I probably should say each of us needs to make the decision how big we think the risk of booking these hidden deals is and whether we think it worth it. In my opinion, just using the basic technique of comparing location, ratings, and reviews can identify almost all deals with just a little work, so that risk can be very low.

      If you decide to try booking, I hope you get a great deal!

      Reply
  • January 9, 2020 at 9:55 pm
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    So I’m pretty sure I checked these deals soon after you posted both the original post and your reply, and I am still seeing… nothing. I’m curious now: do you think there might be a difference when using an app to access the deals or based on user profiles?

    Reply
    • January 9, 2020 at 10:59 pm
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      Priceline likes to be inconsistent with the deals it displays. Sometimes if you refresh a search page a few times different deals will appear. So, I do think it is possible the app shows different listings than desktop browsers.
      Sometimes clearing your cookies can change things up. Also, it is entirely possible any or all of the deals are already starting to go away.

      I just clicked on the link I posted earlier and got the dreaded “deal is gone” message! So, I just searched the 3/1-3/6 dates again – here is a link to the search results instead of the AKL deal directly.

      I’m still seeing the AKL deal in the results (now at $282) but it tells me deal is gone when I click.
      However, I also see a 3*7-rated resort with 300 reviews for $233 – I believe that is AS Music, and probably a suite at that price. I also see a 4.5*9 deal with no reviews listed for $376 I believe is AK Lodge Kidani.

      The moral of the story is: it is hard to guess why Priceline is so inconsistent – the only remedy is to keep trying and hope a combination of luck and determination will find the deal you’d like!

      Reply
  • January 10, 2020 at 12:54 am
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    How crazy would I be to book my family of 4 (kids 10 & 6) at the Yacht Club for 4 nights 1/24, 1/26-28 and then find another place to stay on 1/25? That’s a really good rate on the Yacht Club, but not so great on the 25th….

    Reply
    • January 10, 2020 at 8:59 am
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      Peter,
      CRAZY LIKE A (BRER) FOX.

      In reality, I know people do split stays all the time, but having a different day in the middle there might be a lot of work. My wife is not a split stay fan due to the stress involved in getting everything packed up again in the middle of a trip. I don’t mind it that much, but two in a row might make the stay feel less magical to me.

      (An aside: I have a plan to do a split stay in the future starting with a one night stay with Deluxe Dining Plan on it, then the rest of the stay on another reservation. Those credits should could be used over 2 days and save a bunch of money on Hoop De Doo, plus another dinner and get perks like refillable mugs and snacks. But, that’s number crunching is for another day.)

      If it works for your family, though:
      I see you can get what appears to be a $321 Express Deal for what appears to be an Art of Animation suite on 1/25 (can’t imagine it is a regular room at that price.) That’s pretty hefty to me, but the fun of a suite might be worth it to you.

      Also, I see a direct from Disney room on that night at AS Music for $145. Not a great deal, but OK these days.

      The only thing I’d be worried about with the Express Deals is booking the 1 day at YC then finding I couldn’t get the ending days. Is that risk high? Probably not as I seem them all out there bookable right now. Let me know what you decide!

      Reply
  • January 10, 2020 at 10:52 am
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    Thanks — you are amazing! After sleeping on it, I came to my senses and decided that a traditional split would be the way to go, especially since we are on a fairly short trip. So I’m planning to keep my reservations the first two nights (B hotel) and then try to get the priceline deal starting Sunday. Keeps me on budget(ish) and gives the family a better taste of Disney while minimizing disruptions.

    One more question — how hard is it to change reservations linked to my Disney plan? I’m not at risk of losing my FPP selections am I?

    Thanks again! I’m glad I’ve discovered the sabermetrics of Disney website. I’m even happier that they people populating it are so dang nice :).

    Reply
  • January 10, 2020 at 11:21 am
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    That sounds like a better plan to me – I was getting sweaty palms thinking about 2 moves in 2 days. 😀

    You are within the 30 days FPP window, and you are moving on-site, so I do not think there should be any issue with FPPs.

    In general when making reservation changes I’d suggest adding a little insurance to the process by connect the new reservations to one’s MDE **before** removing anything that might affect FPPs on the account. But I don’t think that matters in this scenario.

    I’ve heard B Resort is pretty nice – and moving up to an on-site Deluxe after that should make for a pretty nice experience. Have a great trip!

    Reply
  • January 11, 2020 at 9:09 am
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    This worked like a charm — thanks again for improving our upcoming Disney trip!

    Reply
  • January 11, 2020 at 10:11 pm
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    🙂

    Reply
  • January 21, 2020 at 9:29 pm
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    Is there a secret to getting Yacht Club for one night on 1/30?

    Reply
  • January 21, 2020 at 10:18 pm
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    Hi Michael,
    No secret – the deals just come and go over time so you may just need a combination of luck and diligence. I don’t see it out there for that date either – sometimes searching multiple days around it can make it show up, but of course that is only helpful if you are flexible and searching for more than one day.

    For Yacht Club you just want to look for a 4* 9-guest rated resort in Bonnet Creek with 60 reviews listed on the deal.

    I noticed some things changing today on Express Deals way out later in the year – hopefully they’ll release some more deals and your date will show back up soon!

    Reply
  • January 23, 2020 at 9:54 am
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    I know it isn’t a Disney resort, but do you know what the 3.5 Star Condo that shows up, Bonnet Creek Area, 8+ Guest, 10 Reviews

    Reply
  • January 23, 2020 at 11:05 am
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    Hi Nick,

    Sure, I got your back on this one too!
    There are only 2 resorts that show up as Condo in Bonnet Creek – but they can appear slightly differently in search results and listings.

    Wyndham Bonnet Creek will show up as 3.5 Condo 8-guest rated in both results and on the Express Deal page and currently has 16 reviews (which they round down to 10 on the listing.) So, that’s your resort in this deal.

    For future reference Orlando Bonnet Creek by ResortShare is right next to WBC and as I understand it is similar to Wyndham BC.
    The weird thing with Orlando BC is that in search results I’ve seen it usually appears as a regular 3.5* hotel and doesn’t say “Condo.” But when you click on the deal, that page WILL say Condo. It shows up relatively rarely in deals compared to WBC and other resorts.
    (It also has an 8.9 guest rating for now, but if it gets a few more positive reviews might jump up to a 9 one day.)

    I personally would like to try these resorts out – they look really nice! And because they have a timeshare component (not related to booking on Priceline) I believe there are no resort or parking fees. Those really add up on some of these non-Disney resorts.
    (Them fees and they make me hot under the collar – just roll them into the resort rate so we can compare apples to apples, I says!)

    Because it’s Thursday and almost the end of the week, I’ll throw in another WBC and OBC tip for you! For most days in the year, both of these resorts have a two-day minimum stay (at least on Priceline) so usually won’t show up if you are searching for a single night’s deal.

    Reply

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