Five Ways to Save While at Disney World


 A trip to Disney World is expensive no matter how you look at it but after making several trips over the past few years, we have figured out a couple of ways to save a few dollars.

Stay off site.

Depending on the time of year, staying off of the Disney grounds may help save a few dollars…or a lot of dollars.  When calculating savings, be sure to factor in the parking fees that you will have to pay for each day that you drive to the parks.  Check the Disney Value Resort prices because sometimes the prices are similar to an offsite hotel and you will get the benefits that come with staying at a Disney property.

Stop by Walmart or Target before heading to the parks.

Both Walmart and Target have large Disney souvenir sections with totes, towels, magnets, stuffed animals and more.  We always make a stop to purchase a few souvenirs so that we don’t hear the “I want that” phrase all day long.  We might still pick something up at the park if one of those stores doesn’t carry it, but we have done our research and know how much it will cost. 

Share meals.

There is nothing that irritates me more than buying a meal for each of my children when they don’t eat it.  Or they eat half of it and could have shared a meal.  When I posted on Twitter for some last minute Disney tips, one of my friends sent this one and I totally agree with her.  The food is pricey but plentiful.  Start with one order of chicken nuggets and french fries or one sandwich, split it.  If everyone is still hungry, order more but at least you know it will get eaten!

Bring your own drinks.

Visitors to Disney World are allowed to bring soft sided coolers if they wish.  If you don’t mind keeping track of a cooler bag all day, load it up with ice, waters, juice, sodas, and more to keep you hydrated all day long.  Another option is to bring a Camelbak pack or something similar.  The kids love to wear our Camelbak.  Not only is it a source of water but it can also be a source of entertainment in long lines!

Bring your own poncho.

It always rains at Disney.  I have been to Disney World at all different times of the year and it has rained everytime we go.  The first time it rained, we got stuck buying the 10-15 dollar ponchos with the giant Mickey head on the back.  Now, we bring dollar store ponchos to throw on if we need to.  An umbrella would work as well but is bulkier and a pain to carry around.  Think of the ponchos as an insurance policy.  If you have them in your bag, maybe you won’t need them!

Have you been to Disney World lately?  How did you save a few dollars on your vacation?


  1. 1

    Excellent suggestions – we followed the rain poncho advice when we went and felt slightly smug when the sky opened up and all I had to do was reach into my purse while others ran for cover (and $$$ Mickey ponchos!)

  2. 2

    We take advantage of Florida resident deals and the off season. Since our kids are not school age yet, we can go when kids go back to school and lines are small. There are usually great prices on the Value resorts at that time and the location is hard to beat. With small ones we still drive and park at the resort but parking is free if you are staying at the resort. It is easier with kids to travel in our own car then the bus.

    We also always stop by a publix on the way in and grab breakfast and lunch items and store them in a cooler in the room. We eat breakfast in the room, pack lunch (sandwiches/chips/drinks), pack a snack and then treat ourselves to a dinner in the park.

    I love Disney and want to go back every year, but we can only do that with smart spending. The kids learn really quickly that we don’t buy everything they want so that is a huge plus.

    Once last thing we try to do is buy the most days we can afford and add the no expiration option to them. They are cheaper the more days you buy (buy in bulk) and we can then go back the next year with at least a couple days already paid.