- Go while your children are young. Yes, I said go while they are young. If your child is under the age of 3, they get into Disney for free. That right there is a savings of over $100 a day per child. And there is PLENTY to do at Disney for younger children.
- Stop at the Walmart by the parks before you even get to Disney World. They have tons of Disney merchandise and even a huge $.99 section. And if you use Walmart’s Savings Catcher app throughout the year, you can save the money you get back to spend at that Orlando location, making your children’s souvenirs even free! Also, there is a Disney outlet mall not too far from the parks that has items from the previous seasons which equals up to big savings on some much sought after items.
- Plan days outside of the parks. Disney has so many free things to do. You could spend a day touring the Art of Animation Resort which features amazing grounds and statues of the characters from The Little Mermaid, Cars, Finding Nemo, and The Lion King.
The resorts also have family movie nights, campfire stories, and free entertainment. So spend the extra money to stay in the property and take advantage of all that the resorts have to offer! Also free to do, Downtown Disney and the Disney Boardwalk.
- Bring your lunch into the parks. Each of the Disney Resort hotels has a mini fridge in the room. There you can keep sandwich meat, cheese and condiments. You can also keep cold juice boxes and water bottles. Make a lunch for each person in your party and bring it with you into the parks in a cooler. Yes, you can bring in a cooler into the parks! Pack a blanket and have a picnic in the park!
- Free water! You can get a free cup of ice water from most Counter Service Food locations in the park. BUT keep in mind, if you are not use to the extra sulphr in the water in Florida then bring your own water.
- Pack Flip Flops and a Poncho for each person in your group. If it starts to rain, change out of your tennis shoes and cover up with a poncho and keep going. This is Disney and it is all about the memories and your kids are going to remember mom and dad letting them jump in the puddles and run in the rain while going from ride to ride. Have fun!
- Buy Disney Gift Cards in advance from Sam’s Club or Cosco. You can get a 3 pack of $50 gift cards right now for $142 which is a savings of $8.00 and you can use these cards to pay for your tickets, hotel stay in the parks, some restaurants and all shops!
- Use gift cards to set a budget for your children and yourself per day using gift cards. This will help you stop from overspending in the parks!
- Plan for accidents and things to go wrong. Pack extra clothing to bring into the park, band aids and Tylenol, ponchos, sweatshirts, even bubbles to keep the kids entertained when there is a long line. This will save you from having to buy something due to an emergency and paying 3 times the normal amount.
- Save the Character meals for Breakfast! Breakfast is the cheapest meal of the day and according to my research, the least crowded. Bonus: If you make your breakfast reservations at the earliest time available, then you are let into the park 15 minutes early! Imagine being in the park with barely anyone! Take advantage of the crowd free photo ops!
- Do you love your Starbucks coffee? Did you know that Starbucks has an app that lets you earn stars for your purchases and after you receive so many stars, you become a Gold member. Gold members get free refills on brewed coffee and there are THREE Starbucks in the Parks. Stop in for a cup in the morning and then stop anytime during the day for a free refill for a pick me up!
- We have all seen the photos of the kids decked out in Princess costumes and cute Disney themed shirts. All of this can get expensive QUICK. But you can save yourself loads of money by shopping early and shopping the sales. I was able to pick up some beautiful Disney Princess costumes for 40% off during a sale recently. The following month, Target had all of their children’s clearance clothing Buy 3 get the 4th They had tons of Disney themed shirts and outfits, for as little as $3 a piece. I was able to dress my 3 daughters for 1/4th of what 1 shirt in the parks would cost by shopping early!
Do you have any tips or tricks? Leave them here in the comments!!
Guest post written by Claire Borne. Want more Disney tips? Check HERE.