Can we park at the Art of Animation even though we're not staying there?
We are staying off Walt Disney World premises but have other family who are staying at the Art of Imagination Resort. Can we drive to their resort and use the same transportation as them. Also, will we be able to get in to their resort or do we have to have a special pass?
Staying on property at Walt Disney World isn’t the right choice for every family, but there are some pretty great perks that come along with staying at a Walt Disney World resort hotel. One of those perks has to do with special parking permissions and the usage of the fleet of buses between the parks and the hotels. If you’re not staying on property, you’ll be out of luck on that front.
All guests who are staying at a Walt Disney World resort hotel are issued a parking pass at check in (if they are driving a car). That pass allows guests to park at their hotel and the parks for free, plus if those guests choose to visit another resort during their stay, they’ll have an easier time gaining access to the resort parking lots.
Of course, all resort hotel guests are able to use Walt Disney World transportation, including the bus system, the monorail, and the on Bay Lake, the Seven Seas Lagoon, Crescent Lake, and the Sassagoula River – even if they’ve brought a car. Many guests choose to have a car at Disney World and still utilize the transportation system.
Guests who are not staying on property are required to buy a pass to park at the theme parks ($14 a day, and transferable between parks if you’re park hopping). You’re allowed to visit any of the resorts and park for free but there is a 3-hour maximum time limit on your temporary guest pass – just enough time to check out the resort, grab a bite to eat, and stop by the gift shop. Parking at a resort in order to gain access to the parks is strictly prohibited.
If your friends are staying at the Art of Animation resort, you can certainly visit them – perhaps you’ll stop by and have a meal at Landscapes of Flavor. But you’ll only be able to park for a couple hours, which means you can’t meet them for breakfast and head off to the park together on the bus. Also, note that resort amenities such as the pools are intended for guests only – non-resort guests will be asked to leave the property if caught trespassing.
If you want to meet up with your friends each day, the best bet would be to make a plan to meet at a park entrance each morning – somewhere close to the entrance gate so that when you get off the parking lot tram or ferry and they get off the bus, you don’t miss each other.
Dad's Bottom Line
Carrie, you can visit your friends at the Art of Animation resort, but you can’t use the resort amenities, including transportation – and you definitely cannot park at their resort all day.