With an unstable economy, many people try and find values in every purchase. Coupons, membership perks, frequent flier miles, these are just some of the ways people attempt to stretch their valuable dollars as far as possible. When it comes to Walt Disney World, it can be difficult sometimes to justify a rather large expense for pure entertainment sake. There is no way around it; going to Walt Disney World is expensive. But not everything has to be purchased at a premium. That is why every few weeks I will be featuring what I believe to be an excellent Disney value! From tickets to desserts, I will keep my eye out for things people can do to save a few dollars…after all, a few dollars saved here and there can add up to something quite significant at year’s end.
In this edition I will be looking at the golfing perk attached to a Premium Annual Pass, a great way to make a very large initial investment pay off in the long run.
The Annual Pass (about $500 for first time purchasers) offers a way to save money for those who intend to visit Walt Disney World a lot in a one year period. There are two types of passes: Annual Passes, and Premium Annual Passes. The Annual Pass entitles someone to unlimited admission with park hopping privileges to the four main parks for 12 months with no blackout dates. You also get complimentary parking in the theme park lots as well as numerous passholder benefits.
The Premium Annual Pass (about $635 for first time purchasers) entitles guests to unlimited admission with park hopping privileges with no blackout dates to all four main parks, Disney Quest, Blizzard Beach, Typhoon Lagoon, and Disney's Wide World of Sports complex, as well as complimentary parking in the theme park lots and all the passholder benefits. Moreover, a Premium Annual Passholder is entitled to unlimited golf at Disney’s Oak Trail all year round.
Located adjacent to the Shades of Green Resort (across the street from Disney’s Polynesian Resort), Oak Trail is one of three golf courses that are frequented by guests and locals alike. Oak Trail is a nine-hole golf course with two par 3’s, two par 5’s, and five par 4’s that run along a heavily wooded area, complete with ponds, wildlife, and lots of lost golf balls.
There are two distinguishing characteristics of Disney’s Oak Trail that set it apart from Disney’s Palm, Magnolia, Lake Buena Vista, and Osprey Ridge Golf Courses. The first is that it is a walking course. Because Oak Trail is only nine holes, and is shorter in yardage than Disney’s other courses, golfers are allowed to walk these courses when playing. While golf carts are fun to drive around, the ability to walk around on Disney’s Oak Trail is a nice way to get some exercise in while you get some golf in.
The other, and more important, distinguishing factor is that Disney’s Oak Trail is considered a “beginner’s course.” In other words, the layout of the course is such that a person just beginning will be able to enjoy themselves a bit more because of such things as: shorter yardage per hole, straightness of most holes, fewer obstacles (e.g., sand traps, water hazards, etc.), and fairly wide fairways. For someone like me, who is picking the game back up for a long hiatus, Disney’s Oak Trail is perfect to work on my swing. Of course, for those of you with advanced skills, Disney’s Oak Trail is also a good way to hone your ability. The par 5’s are particularly challenging, and from what I have experienced, offer enough challenge for everyone. Moreover, the fact that Disney’s Oak Trail is considered a “beginner’s course” means that playing there is much cheaper than the other golf courses.
There is already a significant value to be had for those golfers who want to a round of golf, but do not want to spend close to $200 to do so. Moreover, when you happen to have a PAP, nine-holes of golf is absolutely free to you all year long. If you were only to play golf once a month with your PAP, you will have saved $450 in green fees. And if you’re like me and enjoy playing every Saturday morning, then the value increases substantially.
As you can see, there is a lot of potential value to be had if you enjoy playing golf and have a PAP. Even if you don’t have a PAP, the significantly reduced price for playing at Disney’s Oak Trail will also save you a lot of money. So if golfing is your thing, make sure to try Disney’s Oak Trail on your next visit to the World!
Until next time!