Like a lot of Florida residents we enjoy vacationing in our own state. With beautiful beaches and warm weather it’s like our own little slice of paradise. Also, like a lot of other Floridians we enjoy spending time at the Home of the Mouse, Walt Disney World. As we feel our little one is a little too little to really enjoy Universal Studios, Disney has become our go to for theme park entertainment.
As many of you are probably aware, depending upon what you are doing and enjoying at Disney World the cost can add up quickly. Here are a few ways that we try to stretch our money while enjoying a trip that can quickly add up.
- Take advantage of Florida resident pricing. Disney does run specials that apply only to Florida residents and are a significant discount. In the past we have taken advantage of the half day pass, which allows admission into the park after noon. When doing this we select the park that is going to be open the latest that day and skip the afternoon nap/break to allow for at least 8-9 hours of in park time. Currently Disney is running a promotion for Florida Residents for 4 days for less than $200 which isn’t bad as a one day admission can run upwards of $100.
- Bring your own food! We routinely pack and bring with us all our own breakfast food, snacks and drinks. We utilize large water bottles in order to keep our drinks cool while avoiding the high price of soft drinks in the park. We eat breakfast in our room almost always which also helps us to maximize the early morning time trying to get on as many rides/attractions as possible as it seems the waits always increase as the day goes on. The only exception to this rule is if we splurge on a character breakfast as the breakfast price can be considerably cheaper compared to the dinner price. If we do this we like the family style/all you care to enjoy selections in order to fill up and then normally only eat a snack mid day and then a smaller dinner.
- Book hotels through Priceline and Hotwire. We have saved as much as 75% by booking through third party blind sites. With Priceline narrowing it down to three selections we were able to with 100% confidence book a Disney Partner hotel which still allowed for 60 day prior fastpass booking and save $116 dollars a night compared to the cheapest available on site Disney resort during that same time period.
- Purchase Disney merchandise/souvenirs prior to entering the park. I have bought gently used Disney toys from second hand stores prior to our trip and then presented them to my child upon arrival. She has been just as excited as when we have purchased items on site.
- Get your Princess dresses/costumes at Target after Halloween. My little one has a selection of Disney princess dresses that I have purchased for significantly less by picking them up at Target for 70% off after Halloween. She is happy to be dressed like a princess but at prices as much as 90% less than the average cost in the park.
Stay tuned for further money saving tips and tricks to avoid #mostexpensivedayever.