Most guests travel to Disney on a budget (especially those with big families), but every once in a while it is nice to treat you and your loved ones to a royal experience at the happiest place on earth. Having these unique experiences every now and then make memories that are that much more special. Here are ten of the most splurge worthy experiences at Disney World!
10. Bibbidi Bobbidi Boutique
Watching your little girl get transformed into a princess is truly a magical experience, but it definitely comes at a high cost. Some of the packages offered at this popular boutique are extremely expensive and can cost you a few hundred bucks. You can also opt out of the more expensive packages, but even some of the basic packages can be pricey considering what they offer. There are two boutiques, one inside Cinderella’s Castle at the Magic Kingdom and one at the World of Disney store in Downtown Disney. This is definitely an experience that is worth the splurge if you want a unique princess makeover for your little one. Advanced reservations are highly recommended.
9. Behind The Scenes Tours
While there is an unlimited amount of magic at the parks and resorts, you would be surprised to see how much magic there is behind the scenes too! While these tours can be a bit pricey, they are so worth it! Learn the ins and outs and secrets behind how the magic is made in unique tours led by cast members. This is one of those experiences where you will never forget the ideas and secrets shared and the images of the backstage magic will be engrained in your mind forever. Advanced reservations for the tours are highly recommended since they fill up quickly. The tours are a separate cost above your daily entrance ticket. You must purchase both to participate in the tours. If you can splurge a little on your next vacation, I highly suggest a behind the scenes tour!
8. Deluxe Resorts
For guests that plan to be out and about from dawn until the later hours of the evening, I would recommend a value or moderate resort since you won’t be spending much time at the hotel. For those looking to head over to the parks for a few hours and have some ‘relaxing’ time at the resort, you may want to look into a few Disney deluxe resorts. These properties can be very, very expensive, but they are totally worth it if you are looking for comfort and elegance. The décor and restaurant options at the deluxe properties are delicious and diverse. Most of the deluxe hotels also offer more recreational activities and other added perks such as the nightly electrical water pageant (at the Magic Kingdom Resorts) and campfire sing-a-longs (Fort Wilderness Cabins), alternative methods to and from parks by boats, and grand themed pools. If you want to indulge in the deluxe resorts, be sure to look out for seasonal deals that are posted on the Walt Disney World website. While this may be very costly, it’s nice to enjoy it when you can!
7. Deluxe Dining
Disney definitely offers a plethora of options when it comes to cuisine. Some of the greatest meals are served at the more elusive restaurants at the parks and on properties. While these restaurants can cost an arm and a leg, they are worth it because they serve some of the highest quality food on property and even offer amazing character meet and greets. Restaurants like California Grill (at the Contemporary Resort), Cape May Café (at the Yacht and Beach Club), Cinderella’s Royal Table (at Magic Kingdom), Artist Point (at the Wilderness Lodge) and Victoria & Albert’s (at the Grand Floridian) are a few of the well-known (and highest reviewed) restaurants on the Walt Disney World Property that guests love to experience. Since these restaurants are quite popular, it is recommended that you make advanced reservations. Whether you want to celebrate an intimate birthday or anniversary, or want to have a character dining experiences with the little ones, a deluxe dining experience is a great way to indulge a little on your next trip.
6. Dinner Packages
Who says you can’t have your cake and eat it too? There are some great dinner packages that allow you to dine at a great Disney restaurant and then grab great seats to a spectacular show or firework display. The Fantasmic Dinner package and Wishes and Illuminations dessert package are amongst the three most popular experiences. There are also special event options such as the Star Wars Dessert Party (during Star Wars Weekends in May-June) that are a great way to indulge while having a front row seat to the show. These experiences are an additional cost above your regular admission. It is highly recommended that you call in advance to make reservations since these packages tend to sell out quickly.
5. Annual Passes
If you travel to the happiest place on earth often, you may be better off splurging on an annual pass. While it is a large lump sum payment up front (if you’re not a Florida resident), it can ultimately save you money in the long run. Being an annual pass holder allows you to come and go as you please from the parks and offers an array of discounts on resorts, special events, sit-down dinners, and merchandise. This is one of the best splurges to treat yourself to if you can’t get enough of Disney World!
4. Disney Engagements and Weddings
What is more romantic than having your fairytale wedding come true at the Walt Disney World resort? Nothing! Disney has some of the most classic romance fairytales that are a great theme for saying ‘I do’. Brides can be strolled in with a real carriage and guests can witness couples exchange their vows from an intimate chapel (located at the Grand Floridian Resort and Spa) to the grand gazebo at Sea Breeze Point (at Disney’s Boardwalk Resort and the Yacht Club Resort), and even at the different countries in the World Showcase at Epcot and the train station at the Magic Kingdom. Receptions can also take place in ballrooms (located at many of the deluxe resorts on property) and even on the beaches of the Yacht and Beach Club. Disney also provides many touches with their exquisite flowers, décor, cuisine, cakes, and even a visit from Mickey and Minnie themselves. While this is a grand even that is likely to break budgets, it is unique and one of a kind. The detail and theming of your wedding will be unlike any other wedding you’ve ever been to. This is a beautiful way to get family and friends together in a place where happiness and love is present all over. There are hundreds (and maybe even thousands) of Disney weddings held yearly at several locations throughout the Walt Disney World Resort, so be sure to speak to a representative at Disney’s Fairytale Weddings & Honeymoons. If you are looking for someone to assist you in making a magical engagement happen, look no further than the packages for engagements offered with Disney’s Fairytale Weddings and Honeymoons. You can have your engagement done in so many ways with the help of some great Disney employees to make sure the moment is perfect. While these events can be pricey, it may be worth it for a once in a lifetime experience!
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3. Photograph Sessions
Looking to take family portraits, pregnancy announcements, save the date cards, senior pictures, sweet 16 or quincenera or any other kind of photo, look no further than having the happiest place on earth as your background! Photo packages can be purchased through Disney Fine Art Photography and Video and offer an array of places (parks and resorts) to take your pictures. The cameras and quality of the pictures taken are outstanding and it’s nice to have an assortment of poses whether it’s you and your significant other, your family, or just the little ones. The settings are diverse and inimitable and it’s also great to not worry about having to Photoshop other guests in the background because these photos will only highlight you and your family. These packages can be pricey, but photos make memories that last a lifetime, and the photos taken by Disney are unlike any other company!
2. VIP Park Tour
Unlike the behind the scenes tours, guests can schedule a VIP tour which includes a cast members that guides your way around the park for the entire day. Starting at a whopping $300 per person, you will be treated to unlimited fastpasses (yes, unlimited all day), door-to-door transportation and preferred seating in all parades and shows. Want to ride Space Mountain 7 times in a row during peak season? You can with this exclusive tour. If you have the money, go for it!
It is so difficult to leave Disney without a little memory to take home. There are so many adorable items to choose from with endless character options. With hundreds of stores from the parks, resorts, and Downtown Disney to choose from, there is a souvenir for anyone and everyone to choose from. While some souvenirs are affordable, many are very expensive. Housewares, jewelry, collectible pieces, and art, for example, are amongst some of the priciest trinkets to indulge in, but if you can afford it, it is sure to add a magical touch to your everyday life.
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 Walt Disney World deal, share expert advice and their services are totally FREE! It’s genius!