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Ken and his wife Emily write about using points and miles (and saving money) on Disney trips at Mousehacking.com. So I’ve asked them to share their tips on booking Walt Disney World resorts with the Citi Prestige card to get the 4th night free benefit!
Ken and Emily: You can book Walt Disney World stays with Starwood points or Chase Ultimate Rewards points, but some folks choose to save their points for other trips and instead put their Disney stay on a credit card.
For the 3 stays we’ve booked at Walt Disney World in the past year, we’ve used the Citi Prestige. When you book a hotel stay of 4+ nights through the Citi Prestige Concierge, you’ll get a statement credit for the 4th night. However, starting July 23, 2017, the 4th night free credit will be based on the average nightly cost of your stay, excluding taxes.
This a great perk, and a terrific way to save money on Walt Disney World resort stays. We saved $1,165 on a split stay between Animal Kingdom Lodge and Beach Club on a recent trip to Disney from this benefit alone!
Be Prepared – Know Your Dates and Room Rate
Link: Citi Prestige
Before calling the Citi Prestige Concierge, you’ll need to know the exact hotel, date, and room rate you want to book.
Picking a room rate at a Walt Disney World resort can be complicated because of the different room types and deals that Disney offers. You should use the Walt Disney World website to find which rooms are available on your desired dates and if there are any deals available. On the website, you’ll see 2 types of rates:
- Room-only rates, that don’t include dining plans or tickets
- Package rates, that include tickets and / or dining plans
Any room-only rate, including special offers, will be available to book through the Citi Prestige Concierge and eligible for 4th night free.
Packages are a bit more complicated, so check with the concierge to confirm you’ll get a 4th night free with your booking.
How to Book Walt Disney World Resorts Through the Citi Prestige Concierge
Once you’ve decided on your hotel, room type, and dates, you’re ready to book!
Step 1. Call the Concierge
Call the Citi Prestige Concierge at 800-508-8930.
Have the following ready when you call:
- Your Citi Prestige card
- Your billing information
- The name and address of the resort you’re interested in
- The room types, rates, dates, and offers you want
Keep in mind, you can wind up being on hold for 30+ minutes during peak hours.
Step 2. Give the Concierge Your Booking Request
If you’ve decided on everything, tell the concierge the resort, room type, dates, and room rate you’re looking for.
If you have questions, start by narrowing down the dates and resorts so that the concierge can pull up the same rates as you.
Step 3. Ask Questions About Packages and Discounts
Once you and the concierge are looking at the same information, you’ll want to ask about what packages and discounted rates can still get you 4th night free.
Step 4. Confirm Your Rate and 4th Night Free Credit Amount
The concierge will be able to tell you the nightly rate for your stay. Make sure it is the same rate you expect. Even if it is lower, try to clarify why. The concierge may be looking at the wrong dates.
We even once had a concierge book us at the wrong hotel! Avoid these problems by making sure you’re talking about the exact same rate. The concierge will also be able to tell you how much your 4th night free benefit will be.
Step 5. Confirm, Book, and Receive Your Confirmation Email
Within 24 hours of booking, you’ll receive an email from the Citi Prestige Concierge outlining your booking details, including the 4th night free amount.
Step 6. Receive Your 4th Night Free Credit
You can expect your 4th night free credit within 1 to 2 billing cycles of checking-out (or within 1 to 2 billing cycles of booking if you fully pre-pay your room).
Split Your Walt Disney World Stay to Use 4th Night Free Twice!
Folks often ask if you can use 4th night free benefit on an 8-night stay to get 2 free nights. If you book 8 consecutive nights (meaning 2 back-to-back 4-night stays) at the same hotel, you’ll only get ONE free night.
To get 2 nights refunded, you’ll have to split your stay:
- If you split your stay, even with just a single night elsewhere in between 2 stays, you will get a credit for both stays at that same hotel
- If you split the 8 nights over 2 hotels, you will get a credit for both stays. This is ideal if you’d like to experience 2 Disney resorts in 1 trip!
Splitting a Walt Disney World Stay
Walt Disney World makes it easy to split an 8-night stay between 2 resorts. There are 2 ways to do this.
Option 1. Split a Stay Between Sister or Neighboring Resorts and Walk Your Luggage
Many Walt Disney World resorts come in pairs that are either physically connected or within walking distance. If you split a stay between these resorts, you can check-out of one hotel and walk your bags over to your next resort, where you could check-in and leave your bags with bell services until your room is ready. The entire process should take ~30 minutes.
Here are resorts to consider:
- Disney’s Yacht Club Resort and Beach Club Resort are sister resorts that are physically connected. The walk between lobbies is less than 10 minutes
- Starwood’s Swan and Dolphin resorts are sister resorts separated by a 2 minute walk
- Disney’s BoardWalk Inn, Beach Club, Yacht Club, Swan, and Dolphin are all within 15 minutes of each other walking along the Boardwalk
- Disney’s Contemporary, Polynesian Village, and Grand Floridian resorts are all a few minutes apart by monorail
- Disney’s Art of Animation and Pop Century resorts are separated by a 10 minute walk across Hourglass Lake
- Disney’s Port Orleans – Riverside and Port Orleans – French Quarter are separated by a 15 minute walk along Sassagoula River
- Disney’s All-Star Sports Resort is a 10 minute walk from the All-Star Music Resort, which is a further 10 minute walk from the All-Star Movies Resort
Option 2. Split a Stay Between Any 2 Resorts and Transfer Your Luggage
Disney bell services will gladly arrange to move your bags between any 2 resorts. When you check-out of your first hotel, take your bags to the bell services desk and tell them which resort you’ll be going to.
They’ll tag your bags with special, color-coded transfer tags, and they’ll arrive at your second resort’s bell desk in the late afternoon.
And by booking two 4-night stays at different resorts, you’ll can get the 4th night free twice and essentially get 8 nights for the price of six.