One of my favorite parts of going to Walt Disney World is the planning – no seriously. I love reading up on all things Disney – online (via all the great info available on Disney Addicts And Chip & Co, of course!) and in Disney guidebooks, making lists and itineraries, planning out and making my ADR’s and Fastpass+ reservations, I love it all!
One thing I am always on the hunt for as I plan my trips is BARGAINS – ways to save money on my trip, and on things I need to buy for my trip as well. One way I like to do this is to hit up my favorite stores in search of items for my trip – I have had a ton of luck at places like Target, Wal-Mart, and my local Dollar Tree. Read on for my top trip purchases from each store:
-Baseball caps/sunglasses – the dollar spot at my Target is already starting to stock these for spring time, and it’s a great place to grab some $1 kids (and adults!) sunglasses and $3 Disney themed kids hats for your trip
-Clothes – Disney clothes are everywhere here – you’ll find swimwear, shirts, socks and more for kids and adults at your local Target. Personally I just picked up this adorable Mickey and Minnie shirt last week (pictured above!) at my Target – they had other cute ones too, all of which would be perfect for a day at the Parks!
-Snacks – this isn’t technically a “Disney themed” purchase – but I find that Target has a great selection of snacks – perfect for stocking up and bringing along to Disney. Granola bars, applesauce pouches, fruit snacks, and Goldfish crackers are all items that can be purchased inexpensively at Target and hold up well as you head to Disney and the Parks
*Pro Tip – I said this wasn’t a “Disney themed” item – but Target still stocks Mickey-shaped and Incredibles 2 themed Goldfish crackers – so if you can find them, I recommend you grab them for your trip!
-Sunscreen – I have bought sunscreen everywhere (we buy a LOT of it every year as we have a pool at our house so we are constantly reapplying it) – and for my dollar I like the Equate (Walmart’s store brand) Continuous spray kids version – it sprays evenly and dries quickly. Walmart also carries all of the big brands too and the prices on those are the best I have seen anywhere – so I recommend you stock up here on sunscreen before heading to WDW!
-Misting Fans – The Disney Parks sell handheld fans that also hold/mist water on you – they are amazing on those hot Orlando days, but they are also expensive! Be smart and bring your own – Walmart has them for around $7 each, and we got creative with some Disney stickers we had at home and decorated ours before our trip
Dollar Tree: I have had SO MUCH LUCK here when it comes to prepping for Disney that it’s hard to narrow it down, but here’s a few of the best:
-Ponchos – these are a NECESSITY at WDW with its unpredictable weather – and a bonus is they can also double as a stroller cover in a pinch!
-Ziploc Bags – I use these for everything – snacks, toiletries, outfits (shorts/shirt/socks/underwear for the kiddos all fits perfectly into a gallon zipper bag!), protecting my electronics from getting wet – you name it! My Dollar Tree also usually stocks Disney Princess sandwich size baggies – the perfect size for bringing along snacks to the Parks!
-First Aid etc – You will want to bring along some basic items like band aids, first aid ointment (like Neosporin) over the counter pain pills (packed into a compact daily pill organizer from the dollar tree, too!), packs of tissues and Wet Ones wipes, etc – all of this can be easily purchased at the Dollar Tree. Not sure what else to pack? Then click Here for more WDW packing tips
-Plane/Car Ride Distractions – Many of us have to take a plane (or two!) or drive a looonnnggg way to get to all the WDW magic – so you’ll want to pick up some items to keep the little ones (and big ones!) happy and occupied during this time. Notepads, coloring books, crayons/markers, puzzles, stickers, playing cards and other small games, and much more are available at the dollar store. It’s a great cheaper way to stock up on these items – and my son was so thrilled to see everything I had gotten for him and really enjoyed playing with it all on the plane rides!
*Pro Tip – keep all these little treasures a surprise if you can, and separate them out into “ride there” and “ride home” baggies (another use for those ziploc baggies!) so that they have something fun to do on the (usually sad) ride home after Disney
Not only can purchasing these items ahead of time save you money and hassle when you get to WDW, but shopping beforehand is also tons of FUN! It gives you a way to help prepare and get excited for the trip, and it’s something the whole family can help with too! Just one of many ways to help Prep the little ones for all the fun they’re about to have at The Happiest Place On Earth!
Oh – and while you’re organizing all your thrifty Disney finds for your trip, be sure to check out our top Disney Money-Saving Tips to help make your money go further for (and at!) WDW