Saturday, 20 January 2018

Easy Ways To Save Money At Walt Disney World

When it comes to the topic of Disney World I think one thing that always springs to peoples minds immediately is money. 
Yes, it's true, heading to Orlando is not the cheapest of holidays, I mean it cost me a ridiculous $2 for ONE banana last time I was there... don't ask... and that's after the flights, hotels, park tickets and 57 plush toys I wanted to buy!

Over the last 6 years I have ventured to Disney World three separate times (don't judge) and each time I have found ways and worked out how to save some dollars whilst still living my best life in and around the Disney universe!
I know some of you are ready and raring to book your first trip or maybe you'd like a few extra pointers before you head off again so I thought I'd pop together some really basic things that I follow when it comes to holidaying in the happiness place on earth!

Last year was the first time I had booked a stay with any form of dining plan.. and the reason? Because it was FREE.
Every year Disney have a time period in which they offer free/reduced dining plans depending on which Disney hotel you choose to stay at.
I stayed at Pop Century, which included FREE breakfast for both me and my boyfriend at no extra cost. Each morning we would get up and head to breakfast early - grabbing a huge meal alongside a snack or drink, setting ourselves up properly for the hectic day ahead.
We worked out that if we were to have paid for what we had each morning it probably would have totalled to about $30 a morning which would have been over $400 of our spending money for the trip! How insane is that! We made sure to take full advantage of the free meals and got our "monies" worth! (Who cares about calories when 1. it's free and 2. you're going to walk it off as soon as you hit the parks!)

So if you are able to book when the dining plan offers are available I highly recommend doing so, it's a great way to ensure you don't spend too much of your well saved cash on your daily foodie needs!

It rains in Florida... no matter when you go I'm sure you'll get a little downpour. Ponchos are a great way to avoid getting stuck looking like a soaked drowned rat, protecting your hair/face/clothing PLUS they are fab for when you're heading onto the water rides... especially those damn Kali River Rapids. Pack a cheap one before you go and save $10/15 per person while you're there!
When ti comes to the Water Parks at WDW you don't want to turn up unprepared, purchasing googles, waterproof suncream or certain shoes for when you hit the pool can turn out to be pretty darn expensive. So ensure you've grabbed them all before having to pay Disney prices! (I also love taking my own towel as it makes finding your sun lounger spot a lot easier, but I know not everyone likes doing this as it's a large item to pop in your suitcase!) 

In any case, dining plan of any kind or not, you're still going to spend money on food when away in Orlando. For certain things I strongly, strongly recommend (URGE you) to head to Walmart. The closest one to Disney property is probably only 15 minutes away and it is gigantic, you can literally buy anything there.... which means I can spend about two hours just walking around browsing and taking in the insane size of everything in the US!
Walmart is the perfect place to pick up a number of things. WATER being number one. 
A bottle of water in a Disney park is usually around $2.50 or $3 which, if you drink as much as I do, results in at least $100 being spent on bottled water throughout the trip, which is quite painful to think about. 
Yes, you can ask for free tap water in cups around the parks but this isn't as convenient as a bottle to carry around with you and pop in your backpack, and personally I have a sensitive stomach so never like to risk a new form of tap water, just in case. 
At Walmart you can buy HUGE cases of bottled water for under $10 or so, this is a god-send for me when enjoying my holiday. Each of our hotels rooms we have stayed in has had a fridge making them easy to store and keep cold and each morning we have easily just pop a few bottles in a backpack ready for the day and saving us so many dollars!

Another thing I love to grab at Walmart are snacks, both for days out in the parks and to have back at the hotel room. Things like breakfast bars/clif bars are amazing to pack everyday. They don't melt, can give you that extra bit of energy and help you avoid that rumbly tummy between meals! Personally I would have a huge breakfast then by the time I'd been out for a couple of hours walking I'd be hungry again. These things were great to have on hand, rather than splashing out on a $3-5 snack.
Snacks I'd buy for the hotel room were things like m&m's, Lays etc (Yes I can eat what I want when on holiday!), that I could have in the evening if we were having a night in or a little treat before/after dinner... sometimes when you get back from a tiring day you just wanna lay on that double bed and eat a 3 musketeers bar, you know?

Also, if you're planning on doing some washing while away, which if you're there for two weeks you most likely will, grab yourself some Tide or some other washing detergent when in Walmart. It saves you buying the tiny options available at your washing station in your hotel and will keep you going for your whole trip no matter how many washes you might have to do.

One last thing to consider when you're at Walmart is grabbing some presents. I know not everyone does this but if you're just after grabbing a Disney/Florida keyring for a niece or nephew or a bundle of sweets for your pals at work then you might as well grab it at Walmart, more for your money and most like half the price you'd pay at Disney.
Everything you buy at Walmart is bigger and cheaper... so it's a win-win, more products, less spending!

Are all my tips about food? Nearly. 
One thing I would advise would be to avoid feeling like you all have to have a full meal every time you eat/place an order. My boyfriend and I shared quick service meals a few times and were both still satisfied! (Plus you don't have to leave a tip with quick service... if you're really on a budget that's something to think about also.)
If you're not on a dining plan or just have the 'free breakfast' then you'll be spending $30 or so each time you want a quick service meal for two. These meals are huge, especially when in the heat and walking all day, so a lot of the time my boyfriend and I would share a chicken nuggets and chips - you still get about 4 or 5 nuggets each and a good helping of fries! You pay half of what you would normally and don't feel sluggish and sicky before going on another ride! (Plus if you've followed my other tips, you'll have snacks in your bag in case you're still hungry ;) )

Another thing I now know to avoid in Orlando is taxis. Before Uber was a thing we'd always get taxis to and from places such as Universal, The Florida Mall and iHop and it cost us a bomb! Using Uber on our last trip honestly saved us HALF of what it would have been for a regular taxi and we were thrilled! 
I know Disney have now released their own version of Uber/Lyft with Minnie Vans but I'm unsure on the terms of service right now e.g. do they go outside Disney property etc - so that's also something else to look in to!

So there are just a few ways in which I try and save some money when I'm on my holiday. They may seem like tiny things but they really do add up, like I said $100 on bottled water? No thank you - there's so many other things I'd rather spend that dollar on!

Have you booked a Disney World holiday? Let me know in the comments below, I love hearing about your plans!

Find me on Instagram and Twitter - @AlohaKirstie


  1. Great to read! Walmart is an absolute god send 😁 I'm going Florida in June and I'm so so excited!!

  2. This is so helpful, I'm off to Florida in April so will be using some of these - especially the uber one! We were using taxi's last year and also spend a fortune! xx

  3. I recently went to Disney Paris and spent SO much money on merch haha but good tips for Florida!
    Pam xo/ Pam Scalfi♥


Thank you so so much for coming over and checking out my blog! Feel free to leave a comment or question - or for an instant answer tweet me @alohakirstie and I'll be sure to get back to you asap :)

© Aloha Kirstie | All rights reserved.
Blogger Template Developed by pipdig