Generally speaking, any product for sale or service on offer made available at the airport is a lot more expensive than normal. Everything, from tourist excursions to hotel rooms, souvenirs and flights, costs more. Sometimes it can be confusing as to why, however, that may be less of a concern now than in decades past.
One of the biggest changes is in excursions. The attraction at the Orlando International Airport is SeaWorld, which is operated by Merlin. It’s located on the upper level of Terminal A, which is on the eastern side of the airport. The Florida Aquarium and Disney’s Animal Kingdom are on the western side of the terminal.
Last year, SeaWorld launched a hotel, while SeaWorld is taking on SeaWorld San Antonio, the Central Florida Aquarium and other entertainment, including a bowling alley and a baseball stadium that is slated to host a night game sometime this year.
Meanwhile, the Florida Aquarium has a new hotel, the Conrad, that is directly in the middle of the aquarium. It’s located on the corner of Southwest First Avenue and West Kennedy Boulevard. It’s very close to SeaWorld Orlando, but can be connected via tram. You can actually drive through the aquarium and make the hotel entrance.
Disney also has a hotel nearby, the Avila Beach Resort, which is on the Seaplane Lagoon across from the Magic Kingdom. Again, the hotel can be connected to the Disney World tram by building a ramp on the opposite side of the lagoon. The taxi queue is right there by the hotels, but not in front of the hotel.
If you want more details on your upcoming Disney World vacation, check out Orlando Airport Travel Tips and Local Explorations.
Disney is everywhere and once you explore this extensively wonderful world, you’ll soon feel like you’ve discovered a low minimum deposit casino at which you can spend the next few hours of your life enjoying to the fullest. The Magic Kingdom has a retail store, right next to the Epcot entrance, with souvenirs themed to the theme park, and a special deal on them, plus one with our Disney name on them. Epcot, the other main park at Disney, has a store right next to the Epcot hotel, right next to the Epcot theatre. Between Epcot and Disney’s Animal Kingdom, Disney has stores at the Hyatt hotels, on both resort grounds, and even at resorts at which Disney owns or co-owns the land.
At Disney’s Animal Kingdom, which has the only real shopping anywhere on Walt Disney World, we’re also paying Disney extra to rent the theme of the Disney Parks, the Magic Kingdom, to the Animal Kingdom for one night in their dining rooms. The one at Animal Kingdom is new, with a world-wide menu, some themed foods, an international flavor, lots of fun, lots of food. It is also expensive, with an eight-course dinner, sides and desserts costing a little over $150 per person. Because it is Disney, it is staffed by Disney cast members, most of whom will be dressed in Disney attire, and not just Disney cast members, but Disney cast members dressed in formal attire, complete with wigs and gowns, high heels, and jewelry. We are told that the dining room will serve the eight course dinner exactly the way it is supposed to be served at the Magic Kingdom.
We aren’t supposed to have reservations at the Animal Kingdom restaurant, though. There is no advance notice of reservations. We are first notified that there is a six-day cancellation penalty on our reservations, but we may not know if we have to pay that penalty until we actually call to cancel, which will be a few days before we’re going. So, if we are to have lunch and dinner in the Animal Kingdom restaurant, we won’t know if we have to pay the penalty until the evening before we’re going.