Posts Tagged With: disney budget

My Top 5 WDW Money Saving Tips

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As much as I love Walt Disney World, I am the first to admit – it is NOT a cheap place to visit – Resort room, park tickets, food, souvenirs, transportation, incidentals…it all adds up QUICK. Luckily, there are some things you can do to help lessen the financial burden that comes with planning a WDW vacation. Check out my top WDW money saving tips:

Sharing Is Caring: WDW has some seriously amazing food – they serve up every style of cuisine you can imagine, and it’s all delicious. Much of it is also very LARGE – their portions tend to be big, and this can be a big plus for you budget-conscious travelers. Many meals are so large that they can be easily shared by two children or even two adults. Check out some sharable meal/snack options here

Stay at a Value Resort: Walt Disney World has a TON of hotels on property, and all offer amazing service and helpful staff, but some are definitely fancier (ie – more expensive!) than others. There are Deluxe, Moderate, and Value level Resorts – with corresponding price levels as well. If you’re on a budget, the Value Resorts are the way to go for you and your family. They are all great places to stay (I should know, as I have stayed at all 5!), and while the rooms are pretty standard (nothing fancy, no frills), they are quite a bit cheaper than the other WDW Resorts, so if cost is your bottom line, the Value Resorts are worth checking out
*Bonusstaying on property will also help save on transportation costs – as Resort guests get complimentary shuttles to/from the Orlando airport via Disney’s Magical Express, and they are also able to utilize all on-site transportation options (boats/monorails/buses) free of cost as well

Plan Ahead: Anything you can do in advance will help you in the long run – researching restaurants (including costs, menus, etc), making lists of things to bring, checking out which rides/shows/foods your family might like, and just overall knowing the lay of the land will help avoid impulse purchases and unnecessary spending (buying a $4 bottle of water when there’s a bathroom/water fountain right around the corner, for example…)

Set A Budget: Use that research and those “planning ahead” skills to come up with rough estimates for costs of: airfare/gas, rental car, food, drinks, hotel, park tickets, and incidentals. Set a souvenir budget for your kids, and one for yourself too – and then make sure you stick to it – no matter HOW much they beg for “just ONE MORE PIN!”, or that giant balloon/stuffed animal/hoodie – trust me, your wallet will thank you – as souvenirs are pretty expensive at WDW, and the cost of just “one more thing” per person adds up QUICKLY

Pack Smart: In addition to making a list FAR in advance of items to pack, I suggest you start packing way in advance too. A few weeks before my trip I will print out my packing list (yes, I type it – don’t judge), and set my suitcase out with items I know I won’t need again before my trip. I also have some “must pack” items – ponchos, sunscreen, park-friendly snacks (trail mix, granola bars, etc – another big money saver!), a water bottle, and comfortable sneakers
Packing Tip – I wear all my “bulkiest” items when flying to save precious suitcase space: sneakers, jeans, and a hoodie are all a part of my standard travel attire, which leaves me more room for other necessities in my bags

Hopefully you can use some (or all!) of the above advice to help you save money on what can otherwise turn into a VERY costly Walt Disney World Trip – and even though I try and save money whenever possible and am all about budgeting, I know that a Disney vacation is worth every penny in the end – the fun you’ll have and the memories you’ll make are items you can’t put a price tag on

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Categories: Adult Walt Disney World, Disney Food, Disney Restaurants, Disney Rides/Attractions, Disney Vacation Planning, Walt Disney World | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

“Always Be Prepared” – Start Saving NOW For Disney!

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I know for a fact that I will not be heading to Walt Disney World for a few years – Fall of 2018 to be exact. Why so long? Well, I want to make sure my son is old enough to enjoy it, and he will be 4 then – which is how old I was when I went for the first time. That being said, I am already planning on how I am going to pay for the trip. Why plan so far in advance, you might ask? Well, aside from the fact that I am a planner by nature (lists, budgets, itineraries, etc – they are all soothing to me) – it can be a hefty cost to bring your whole family to Disney…

Plane tickets, Park tickets, car rentals/gas, food, souvenirs….it all adds QUICKLY when you are heading to Disney – and sometimes unforeseen costs can really make a mess of your otherwise carefully planned vacation budget. I recommend you start saving as soon as you can for your future Disney trip – the more money you have saved, the more smoothly your trip will go!

So it may be expensive…the big cost has big rewards though – it’s a magical place, and getting to see my son experience it for the first time is something I already cannot WAIT for

It’s worth EVERY single penny in my book – I am already hoarding my Disney Visa rewards dollars, and am hoping that in a few years, they can turn into a down payment to Disney!

What about you – how do YOU like to save for your vacation?

Categories: Adult Walt Disney World, Disney Vacation Planning, Walt Disney World | Tags: , , , , , , | Leave a comment

My List of Disney Lists

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I like to make lists. That is no secret, and I do not apologize for it. Organization is important – and it’s especially important when you’re taking your family on a vacation! Forgetting something (like your cell phone charger or spare camera battery…) can impact your entire trip, so I find its best to plan ahead as much as possible. I like to make SEVERAL different lists when preparing for my Walt Disney World vacations – here’s a rundown of them:

-Souvenir List – having been to WDW many times, I know what kinds of souvenirs they have, and what kinds of things I can actually enjoy/get a lot of use out of. Kitchen items, mugs, playing cards, pens – these are the kinds of things I like to plan to buy, and having a list of what I might want to get helps keep my budget on track. I use the Disney Store website to help ballpark costs of some of the items, which helps too!

-Budget – Ok, this one isn’t really a “list”, but its still a REALLY important part of vacation planning – knowing how much things cost and about how much you will need to save is imperative. Some things I always include in a Disney trip budget are: hotel, park tickets, food costs (don’t forget tips and “adult” drinks too!), souvenirs, transportation, and incidentals (someone loses their hat, or we run out of sunscreen, etc)

-Packing list – You HAVE to make a list of what’s going to go in your suitcase – you don’t want to forget anything important! I like to make the list a few weeks before the trip, and I do it on my phone so that I can add items as I think of them. I also like to check the weather so that I know what I can expect – things like ponchos and sunscreen are always on my list, and I like to make sure I have some snacks for traveling and all my necessary chargers too. Now that I have a son too, packing has become this HUGE undertaking –and I now need a separate list so I can make sure I have everything he needs too – so if you have kids, packing lists are even more important

-Park Items – There are some items you will want to make sure you are toting along on your Park days – sunscreen, assorted sizes of Ziploc baggies, ponchos, snacks, sunglasses, and a lightweight hoodie are some of the things that go into the backpack we bring when we head to one of the WDW theme parks

-“Must-Do’s” – Before you go to Disney World, check out their official list of rides/attractions and go over it with your family. Decide which ones are on your “must do” list and make sure you have that handy while at the Parks. This should be a pretty short list – as you don’t want to try and do too much in a day or you’ll get burnt out!

-“Must-Eat” items – Disney is a food lover’s paradise – they have all kinds of cuisine and restaurants, and it’s a good idea to know what they have and what you might want to try. This is an especially good thing to do if you have any type of special diet or food allergy – it’s good to know which places can accommodate your needs

Hopefully this “list of lists” will be helpful to you– maybe you can use some (or all!) of them to help ensure your WDW vacation goes smoothly!

Categories: Disney Food, Disney Restaurants, Disney Rides/Attractions, Disney Vacation Planning, Walt Disney World | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

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