Headed to Disney? Request your FREE Disney Parks Vacation Planning DVD – just click on the banner below and fill out the short form.
Your FREE Vacation Planning DVD will include a complete tour of the Walt Disney World Resort in Florida and a tour of the Disneyland Resort in California, affordable ways to play and stay during your Disney vacation, planning tips and more!
Add some fun to the days/weeks leading up to your Disney trip! Head over here where you can print a free Countdown to Disney image (use cardstock paper if you have it on hand!). Then just cut the sides of the paper to fit into an 8×10 photo frame. Each day, use a white board marker and write on the glass frame to indicate the number of days left in your countdown. How fun is that!?
Check out these Disney reader tips:
At Disneyland, you can get a free cup of ice and water at any of the quick service restaurants; not the food carts, but the pizza place, Harbour Galley, etc will do this. Huge savings and then you don’t have to carry your own water bottles around. If you or your kids don’t like plain water bring those bottles of Mio or Crystal Light. Always pick up a few ponchos at a dollar store to bring into the parks. They’re great for the water rides and it saved us from getting soaked last July when it suddenly starting raining.
We always take our crock pot and find a grocery store nearby (we take our food in a cooler if we drive). Put dinner in the crock pot before we leave in the AM and then we head to the hotel around 1 to eat and then we take sandwiches back to the park with us. We save SO much money this way and the maids always mention how smart it is. LOL. We also make sure the hotel has a hot breakfast and eat a huge meal before hand. Take snacks into the park and drinks for the times when the kids are fussy. We ALWAYS take a “park break” and go back to the hotel to rest.
For my family and me, the best decision we made was to purchase a Magic Your Way package, which included Disney Dining. We stayed on-site at Pop Century. Even though it is rated as a “value” resort, we thought it was great. The rooms were standard hotel rooms, which was fine for us. The grounds were lovely, and the hotel pools were nice. It was WONDERFUL to have our meals paid for in advance. It took the worry out of vacation and truly allowed me to enjoy myself. It felt luxurious to be able to tell my kids they could order a dessert if they wished and to choose whatever beverage they wanted. If we had not purchased the Disney Dining Plan, I would have obsessed over how much I was spending at every meal. Also, we thought the character dining was fantastic.
Consider renting a house instead of staying on property. We rented a beautiful 3 bedroom house with our own private pool for a hundred bucks a night. There were Disney themes throughout the house so it still felt like Disney and it was nice to have someplace to get away from all the craziness. After factoring in the price of the car we had to rent, it came out to about the same price as when we stayed at a moderate resort. And honestly, I didn’t miss having to ride the bus after the fireworks.
We purchased the Memory Maker. It was so nice being able to take as many pictures as we wanted and to be able to download those pictures when we got home. I loved the Disney transportation, too. The one feature I purchased that I wish I hadn’t was the park-hopper option. I thought we would use it, but I think we only ended up using the park-hopper one time. If I’m blessed enough to be able to take another Disney vacation, I think I’ll save the $250.