Disney Vacation Planning – Top 5 Money Saving Tips 1











Walt Disney World is one of the most magical places you could ever vacation – the rides, food, atmosphere, parades, characters, shows – it’s all amazing. Unfortunately, all that Magic can come with a pretty hefty price tag. It’s no secret that going to Disney World can be expensive – but luckily, there are ways to help combat that and make your Disney trip a bit easier on your bank account. Check out my Top 5 Disney Money Saving Tips:

1. Go At An “Off Season” Time: If this is something that is feasible for you and your family I HIGHLY recommend going to Disney World during a less busy or “non peak” time. Peak times include most holidays and the weeks surrounding them – so President’s Day Week, Easter week, Basically all summer (Memorial Day through Labor Day), Thanksgiving Week, and the weeks before/after Christmas and New Years are going to be the times of year to avoid if possible.  If you can, head to Walt Disney World during Late January/Early February or September/October – and you’ll not only find cheaper accommodation prices, but you will also experience fewer crowds, too (a win/win in my book!). Additionally, Disney will tend to run Fall promotions (like Free Dining or room discounts) during “non peak” times to try and ramp up attendance – which means you can end up saving even more money!

2. Make a Vacation Fund Jar: This is a great rainy day craft activity – just grab some Disney stickers and markers and an old coffee can or jar – and decorate away! Then put that “Disney Vacation Fund” Jar somewhere where you can see it every day as a reminder to drop the spare change from your pockets (or the bottom of your purse) into it. I personally love this idea – not only will I get to do a fun craft, but I now have a place for all those annoying coins, and then when I get to Disney I can buy something extra special with it!

3. Pack Wisely: Planning ahead is a BIG PART of saving money at Disney – especially when it comes to packing. I like to sit down about a month before my trip and make a master list – things I need to bring (for every member of my family), and I also make a list of things I need to buy before the trip, too. Now once you do this – do NOT get overwhelmed – as it likely will be a LONG list – but fear not – you still have a month to get it all together, bought and packed. Some items I always make sure I bring along include: Sunscreen (and PLENTY of it – as it is EXPENSIVE at the Parks, , a hoodie for each person in my family (don’t want to get stuck at the Parks on a chilly evening and have to shell out $50+ for one of those, that’s for sure!), ponchos, over the counter pain meds/first aid supplies – all of these are items that are available for purchase at the Parks, but they are very expensive and you are much better off bringing your own from home! Another item you can pack to save some money is SNACKS – things like granola bars, trail mix, dried fruit, pretzels, etc – they all travel well, and will help save you money as Disney snacks are expensive.  When stocking up on items, head to your local Dollar Store or discounted drink store.  You’d be surprised at how many park essentials you can get on the cheap!

4. Share Meals: Sharing quick service meals/snacks can really help you save some money at Disney World! Many meals are large enough for two children (or even 2 adults!) to share, and the same goes for snack.  Disney is the world of over-sized food, and this is something you can use to your advantage when it comes to keeping the trip budget-friendly. No when it comes to Table Service restaurants, wait staff may be more stringent about sharing but for those eating on the go, its the perfect budget saving solution.

5. Set a Souvenir Budget: This one can be tricky, especially when you have little ones traveling with you – it’s easy to want everything in sight, and even easier to pay for all those things with your Magic Band that’s hooked up to your credit card…needless to say, this is the time to exercise some major willpower. Whatever it may be – $25, $50, $100 a person – just decide how much each person is allowed to spend on souvenirs ahead of time, and make it clear to them ALL (adults and children alike!) – that they will NOT be allowed to go over that amount!  I also institute the rule of “we don’t buy until the end of the day” – so that way we don’t get stuck toting our souvenirs around all day, and as an added bonus it gives you time to think it over and decide if you REALLY need that shirt/hat/stuffed animal. I find that setting and sticking to a souvenir budget is the biggest money saver for my family – as we tend to get all excited and buy too much stuff (some of which we definitely don’t need, and likely won’t use much beyond the trip itself), so setting a clear expectation of spending ahead of time can really help keep costs low!

I personally follow each and every one of these tips when planning my Disney vacations, and I know that without these, I wouldn’t be able to afford to go at all! What about you – What are your top Disney money saving tips?

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Disney Vacation Planning – Top 5 Money Saving Tips 2

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Catie H