“How to Save Money at Disney.” Sounds impossible, right? Well, I think there are ways to cut down on some of the costs, so please take a look at my list and tell me what you think!
1. Stay on property. You can spend $100 or less a night at the lowest tier property, or you can spend $1000 a night. WDW offers all price ranges. No matter what the cost of your hotel, from $100 to $1000, you are eligible for the Magical Express, free round-trip transportation to your hotel from the airport. That is a big savings that you cannot get at Disneyland! You also get free bus service all day long to and from your hotel to the various parks and Downtown Disney. I would never rent a car to then have to pay for parking at the parks, which then leaves you further away from the entrance as well! We call that a win/win!
2. Plan to stay for a long time. A four day base adult ticket costs $294. Every day after that costs $10 more. No one I have spoken to seems to realize that, for example, a 10 day ticket costs $60 more than a 4 day ticket! At that point your average daily ticket cost drops from $73.50 to $35.40. Most of us see $99 for the first day and think this is an incredibly expensive proposition.
DAYS TOTAL COST DIFFERENCE
1 $94-99 99
2 188 89
3 274 86
4 294 20
5 304 10
6 314 10
7 324 10
8 334 10
9 344 10
10 354 10
This is the best example I have found at “How to Save Money at Disney!”This info is straight from the ticketing website, nothing new here, just a small fact that very few people realize! This past Summer we stayed 8 days, last year we stayed 10 days. We had realized that our daily average ticket was much lower than we imagined. You hear that one day is $99, but that is not true. The first day is $99. That little change in language will change your perception and people will then realize that the above shows you that a week ticket does not cost 7x$99, almost $700, but rather, less than half of that, $324 which is a daily average of $46. Suddenly ticket prices don’t seem so scary.
3. Eat breakfast in your room. There is always a kitchenette. I bring coffee and coffee filters and save a few dollars a day that way. I will go to the store at the hotel and buy basics, which, while they cost more on property, still saves me from spending $40 in a theme park to eat breakfast. That also saves us time!
4. Stay in the luxury of a DVC property for half price. It is no longer difficult to find travel agents that can do this for you. Sorry WDW, but if I can get a room at the Old Key West or Saratoga Springs for half price without buying the DVC membership, I am going to. Last year we had a full one bedroom at the Saratoga Springs for less that $250 a night. Full kitchen and laundry, two bathrooms and a Jacuzzi. This year we had a studio at the Old Key West for slightly less than $200 a night. Both of these were rooms that would normally cost double. This is our budget. Don’t worry if this is still double of what you can afford, my friend paid $85 a night during the same period at the end of the Summer. This is “How to Save Money at Disney ” in style!
5. Kids meals. My son and I both had a kids meal in Epcot. We had a cup of macaroni and cheese, a yogurt, apples slices, and a drink. That was half of the cost of an adult meal without a drink! And it is plenty to eat. I did that again at the Animal Kingdom. It only took five trips to WDW to figure this one out!
These are my top 5! There are other folks who would add to this list. Last year we took car service from the airport to save time. The car also stopped at a supermarket for us to stock up on food and drink. That did not seem to be worth it.
BUT WAIT! WE HAVE ONE EXTRA TRICK! We enjoyed free refills at all our sit down meals in Walt Disney World. We also stumbled upon the fact, thanks to some nice waiter, that we could get a to go cup when we left. So we all walked out, full of liquids, and with full containers of beverages in hand! For our August trip when the weather was 140 degrees, this was a huge help and beverage money savings!
If you have your own money saving tips on “How to Save Money at Disney,” please leave it in the comments!