Doing Disney on a Budget - Our Favorite Tips

Castle Money

4. Skip Park Hopper

When it comes to saving money on Disney Park tickets, there’s not a whole lot that you can do. Purchasing multi-day passes always helps a little, of course. But skipping the Park Hopper option is your biggest discretionary choice. At time of writing, adding the Park Hopper option to a four day ticket would run $75 each, so for a family of four that’s an additional $300. With proper itinerary planning (see our helpful planning articles for assistance) you can absolutely get by without Park Hopper, doing just one park per day. Is Park Hopper nice to have? Definitely—there’s something to be said for the freedom of going between parks. But when you’re trying to save money, I’m just saying you won’t automatically compromise your magical experience by opting out of Park Hopper. 

5. Stay Off Property

OK, this is the biggie. There are some Disney Fanatics who would never even consider staying off of Disney property. It’s true that staying at a Disney Resort offers an immersive experience that’s unachievable offsite. But it’s a HUGE budget buster, just sayin’, especially for larger families. Yes, our imaginary family of four will do OK by staying at a Value Resort for around $150 per night (more depending upon the season). But a group larger than six will be looking at a minimum of $300 per night. And this is for a no-frills room experience. Staying offsite can easily save you $100 per night and get you a more luxurious suite experience.   

6. The Thrifty Locker 

Park Bag

Finally, if you need to save money, you’ll want to plan ahead. It’s entirely possible to go into Disney with nothing but an ID and a credit card. But traveling light comes at a cost (especially with kids) when convenience-type situations arise. For example, ponchos inside the parks cost $9 or more. Pack the dollar store version and potentially save $32 for a family of four. Other basic necessities such as sunscreen, batteries, and pain reliever will cost 30%-50% more in the parks rather than bringing your own (though a single dose of pain reliever can be administered for free at First Aid). And we’ve already covered snacks and drinks. But if you don’t want to lug around a whole convenience store, remember that lockers are available for those extra, just-in-case items. You can also keep additional clothes, shoes, or jackets there for emergencies and/or a temperature change, potentially saving even more.

Disney doesn’t have to cost a fortune. Utilize the budget-savvy techniques that are right for your family, and plan that vacation you’ve been dreaming of. And guess what? Those happy memories are included free of charge!  

BONUS TIP: Consider planning and booking your next Disney trip with an Authorized Disney Vacation Planner you can trust like Mickey Travels. They’ll help you get the best Disney travel deal, share expert advice and their services are totally FREE! It’s genius!