DISNEY on a budget

disney This March Break, we are going to Disney World for the second time.  I never thought I would be able to take my daughter’s to Disney, let alone twice, but after a ton of research I have been able to do this on a budget and not break the bank. Here are some tips when planning your trip.

  • Plan early.  When I first thought Disney may be an option, I started looking at websites early.  The one I use a lot to plan trips is expedia.ca.  I find the earlier you book, the cheaper it is.
  • Know the peek traveling times.  Christmas vacation, March Break and Easter are all peek traveling times to Disney.  Believe it or not, one of the cheapest times to go is in August.  We booked our first trip in August and I can tell you the reason it’s probably the cheapest is because it’s also one of the hottest.  But we carried little mist bottles and went indoors for shows and events so it truly was not that bad.
  • On or off Disney.  We decided to stay off Disney on our first trip. International Drive is the major hotel area close to Disney.  Most hotels offer FREE shuttles to Disney so you don’t have to worry about transportation.  We picked a hotel that also had a full kitchen, so we actually did some grocery shopping while we were there and made our own meals.  This is a HUGE money saver. The day we went to Disney, I made sandwiches, brought snacks etc in a backpack.  Disney allows you to bring your own food as well, so this saved us one meal at Disney and we paid for dinner which wasn’t that bad!
  • Ticket Options.  So Disney offers a variety of tickets offers, park hopper, water parks, expiration dates, etc.  We decided on a base ticket—meaning no other options, just your ticket.  Park hopper allows you the option to jump from park to park the day you are there, it also means a way higher price.  Trust me when I tell you, we did Magic Kingdom our first day and we didn’t even do the whole park!  The park is HUGE and I couldn’t of imagined jumping to another park.
  • Discount Disney Tickets.  I searched and searched for cheaper tickets, other than the gate prices, and found a website that offered discounted tickets and mailed them to you.  I used Maple Leaf Tickets (no not the hockey team….LOL) and saved money and delivered to my house no problem.

So for our first visit, we went in August.  Flight +hotel for a family of 4 was $1300.  This was for 4 nights and 5 days. Add about $350 for our disney tickets (we only did 1 day the first time),  we did Sea World for another day so another $250, then misc grocery expenses, we did our whole vacation for under $2000! For a family of 4, this is pretty good!!  This time around we decided to splurge and stay on Disney.  With huge savings from couponing we were able to afford this trip.  Price this time around was $4500 and this is with no dining option.  So a major difference and worth it to research it and save yourself the money while still enjoying your trip. 🙂

5 thoughts on “DISNEY on a budget

  1. Brenda

    I’m sorry I find this article completely misleading it basically says if you stay at Disney it will cost you 2 1/2 times! I’ve flown to Florida 9 times over the past 7 years and 4 being Disney vacations. So how many days of theme park tickets on this $4500 vacation sure a five day pass is much more expensive than swimming at the pool at the resort! Not to mention flight prices have changed over the years….this past November I paid $321 US for 2 one way tickets to Orlando when in 2010 thru 2012 we paid under $900 Cdn for 4 return tickets for 4 people. If you go during the free dining it’s awesome experience to dine with the characters…you can’t get that not staying on a Disney property unless you pay huge prices! I

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  2. lily

    I wrote this article and this is in Canadian pricing and this is for 2 days of disney passes for 2 adults + 2 children. This is for march Break so of course prices are higher, but this is staying on the resort and no I am not inflating prices, this is what I am paying! First time we went was 3 years ago, and that is what we paid. Yes there is a dramatic difference staying on disney vs staying off.

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  3. Brenda

    Not sure if you are staying at a value, moderate, deluxe or deluxe villa but I think you got took. I work for a travel agency seems pretty high especially with only 2 day passes. Flights from Detroit are much cheaper than Toronto and yes flight at March break are ridiculous around $400 out of the US and over $500 from Toronto. We usually pay for flights separate as it’s cheaper. You will love Disney customer service, free shuttles from airport, free luggage pick up and they even have there own airport check in at the report.

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