Posts Tagged With: walt disney world

T.G.I.F. Pic Of The Week – Unique Ways To Display Your WDW Trip Photos

Disney Trip photos are my absolute favorite souvenir – they are just the best thing, and you can do so much with them! Obviously we have a bunch framed and displayed around our house, but there are plenty of other ways you can show them off:

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There are plenty of Disney mugs available for sale both in the Parks and online, but why not make your own instead?

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That perfect shot you got of Cinderella’s Castle would look great on your phone, wouldn’t it?

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Throw pillows, shower curtains – the possibilities are endless, really. These are examples of items you can get personalized from shutterfly.com (which I love), but I have also used Walmart and Target’s photo departments, and they have just as many awesome items to choose from

So instead of just a photo in a frame, why not mix it up a bit, give those WDW trip photos a new way to shine?

TGIF!

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

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

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

T.G.I.F. Pic Of The Week: “Larger Than Life” Fun Awaits You At The WDW Value Resorts

There are tons of places to stay in and around Walt Disney World – and when it comes to narrowing it down to which one I want to book, I have to say I am partial to the Value Resorts – not only are they the most wallet-friendly (as the name implies!), but they are also really great places to spend some time with your family too – they are all intricately themed, and the décor is really enjoyable too. Check out some of the BIG FUN that awaits you at the WDW Value Resorts:

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Now I realize that not everyone is into giant Mr Potato Heads or Mickey Mouse pool fountains, but I think they are great, and I can bet your kids would love them – so why not save some money and stay someplace fun and family friendly like the WDW Value Resorts? I have stayed at them all, and loved every one!

TGIF

Categories: Disney in Pictures, Disney Resorts, Disney Vacation Planning, Walt Disney World | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

My Top 5 Tips For Saving Time At WDW

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Walt Disney World is a busy place – there are hardly ever any non-busy times at the Parks anymore, which means you can expect to wait for everything from bathrooms to rides and everything in between, too. No one wants to stand around in lines all day, so I suggest you use my top WDW time saving tips to help avoid some of that waiting:

Use The Fastpass+ option: Disney allows you to essentially “Reserve” your spot on 3 rides each day – you pick a time online (you can do this up to 60 days before your trip!), and the information is stored on your Magic Band. You then go to the ride at the designated time, scan your magic band, and go through the (MUCH SHORTER) fastpass line and are on your favorite ride in no time! No 3 hour wait times for you (yes, wait times for rides can get that long – and trust me, it’s not pretty) – this can be a MAJOR time saver for sure!

Make An Itinerary: I know some people hate planning out their days and want to just go with the flow while on vacation – and that will work sometimes at Disney, but I find that it’s good to have even just a basic “what Parks you want to go to which days” type of plan – that way you can plan fastpasses and meals around what park you will be at, and you can avoid having to spend time traveling to another park to try and get there in time for your dining reservation….been there, done that – and that’s why I make an itinerary now!

Hook Up Your Credit Card To Your Magic Band: Magic Bands are amazing – the tiny chip in this bracelet holds the key to your room, your dining reservations, your park tickets, your fastpasses, and your payment information if you want – and trust me, you DO want! Pay for drinks, snacks, souvenirs, meals with just a wave of your wrist! Plus that way you don’t even really need to carry around your credit cards with you when you head to the Parks – win, win!

Make ADR’s: ADR stands for Advance Dining Reservation – which means you can book what table service meals you want to eat at before your trip (180 days before, to be exact!), and when you arrive at the restaurant at the reservation time, you’re put on the list for the next available table for your party. Disney is so crowded these days that walking up to a sit down restaurant and expecting to get a table is near impossible – so I HIGHLY recommend you make some ADR’s before your trip, or else you might end up waiting a LONG time to eat, or waste time trying to find another less busy place to eat

Eat at “Off” Times: Avoid the noon hour and the 5-6pm hours for lunch and dinner – as pretty much ALL Disney dining spots are SUPER crowded at this time, and you’ll end up waiting in long lines for food, and might have to fight someone for an available table too – not worth it, in my opinion. Have a late breakfast, so that you can wait to eat lunch until after 1pm, you’ll save time this way for sure!

Basically – I recommend you plan ahead – and use the ALL the technology Disney has to offer – Magic bands, fastpasses, ADR’s, their mobile app, pre-trip booking via computer – use them, and you will for sure save time and frustration on your next Disney Trip

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

T.G.I.F. Pic Of The Week: My Favorite Disney Moments With My Favorite Birthday Boy

HAPPY BIRTHDAY EVE to my amazing husband – he is not only all around awesome at being married to me (not always an easy task I am sure), but he’s a great dad and friend too! We have had a lot of great times together, and we have been blessed enough to be able to travel to Walt Disney World 4 times together – here’s a recap of some of my fave Disney moments with my fave guy:

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There were many delicious meals shared at WDW with my man – we both love trying new foods, and Disney has some amazing restaurants – so it’s the perfect place for foodies like us!

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There’s no better place to be than The Magic Kingdom, am I right?

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Posing with characters is fun no matter how old you are

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The couple that rides Star Tours together, stays together (or something like that…)

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Ok, I know this one isn’t a Disney picture – but the cuteness makes up for that, right? I am so grateful for my family and can’t wait to make more Disney memories with them

TGIF – and HAPPY BIRTHDAY ANDREW – may your day be as amazing as you are!

Categories: Adult Walt Disney World, Disney Food, Disney in Pictures, Disney Restaurants, Disney Vacation Planning, The World Outside Disney, Walt Disney World | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

My Top 5 MUST PACK Items For WDW

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I have been lucky enough to get to travel to Walt Disney World many times as a kid, and a handful of times as an adult as well, and after all those years of packing (with blunders along the way – overpacking, underpacking, forgetting things) – I have come up with this list of items that I will absolutely not travel to WDW without:

Sunscreen: That Florida sun can be brutal – and even if the sky seems partly cloudy, you could end up with a bad sunburn – which is why I make sure I bring plenty of sunscreen along with me in my suitcase and in my bag I pack for the Parks, too. You can put it on as you’re waiting in line for the bus/monorail/boat to the Parks in the morning, and you’ll want to make sure you reapply every few hours too (every few hours as in every 2 – not every 4-6 – yes, the sun is that strong there). You can purchase sunscreen at the Parks/Resorts of course, but it’s very expensive, and the selection is limited, so I recommend you plan ahead and purchase a few bottles of your preferred brand/SPF to bring along with you

Sneakers: And not just any sneakers, I specifically make sure I bring new-ish sneakers that have been well broken in but that aren’t totally worn out/worn down. Yes, this is oddly specific – and for a good reason – you will do a TON of walking on your Disney vacation – like multiple miles a day. So while those flip flops may seem like a great idea because the temperature is already over 80 before breakfast time, trust me – that is one decision you will regret, as most flip flops/sandals offer little to no support for your feet – which will be poor and aching feet by the end of a day spent in sandals at Disney, for sure. So bring sneakers, ones that are broken in (so that they are comfortable), but ones that are new enough to still offer decent support for all that walking you’ll be doing

Ziploc Baggies: This may seem like a strange one to have on the list, but they come in so handy and have SO many uses. I bring assorted sizes, and use them for storing partially eaten snacks, park maps, autograph books, wet ponchos, batteries, chargers; and I also use them to store my electronics (cell phone, camera, etc) when I go on rides where I might get wet – like Splash Mountain

Water Bottle: With all that walking and the hot sun and temperatures, it can be easy to get dehydrated while at Walt Disney World – so I like to make sure I am drinking a LOT of water. I bring along a big 32 oz water bottle and I fill it with ice and water every morning before I leave for the Parks, and I make sure I refill it frequently throughout the day as well. Not only is staying hydrated super important, but saving money is too –and if you plan to just buy bottled water whenever you need it, you will spend a LOT of money unnecessarily, so bring your own bottle along and you’ll ensure you aren’t passing out from heatstroke, while saving money at the same time!

Ponchos: Of course Disney sells them, but not only are they costly, but I can never seem to find them when I need them – like when it starts pouring. So bring your own along instead – you can buy them at Target/Walmart – they sell nicer ones that run about $9 each, or you can buy smaller disposable ones at the dollar store. Either way – you will be well prepared for the (sometimes very sudden!) rainfall that tends to happen almost daily at Disney World

Hopefully you will include some (or all!) of these items in your suitcase next time you head to WDW – and that you find them as useful/helpful as I do!

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

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