Top Tips for Making Disney World Cheaper

A vacation to Walt Disney World is beyond incredible. But, the cost of a Disney family vacation can also climb to an incredibly high sum. While there is no way to “do Disney on a dime,” there are ways to cut costs and get the best value for your hard-earned cash. Let’s chat about ways you can work to reduce costs and make smart decisions to stretch your vacation dollar further. Here are my top tips for making Disney World cheaper.


Travel Outside Peak Season

I’ll start this tip with the disclaimer, traveling outside peak season won’t work for everyone. If a work or school schedule limits you, you may only be available to travel during the busiest times of the year (summer, holiday breaks, etc.). Still, this tip is the most significant potential money saver, so it’s worth mentioning.


Credit: ITM

If you know much about Walt Disney World Resort, you have likely heard the term “peak season.” The key to saving money and enjoying shorter wait times is choosing a time to vacation at Walt Disney World when the rest of the country/world is not also headed to Orlando, Florida. December, the opening and closing week of EPCOT Festival Seasons, and July are all peak times that come to mind. Travelers should also avoid event weekends like RunDisney weekends that bring thousands of additional travelers to the Disney Property.

But don’t worry, you can still have a fantastic Disney experience in peak season. After all, if you never traveled in busy December, you’d miss the beautiful Park Christmas trees and decor at Disney Resorts. Still, if you are planning a vacation with a lower budget in mind, avoiding peak season visits is a way to cut costs. Resorts will be cheaper, and you may even enjoy a lower Park ticket price if you visit during some of the slowest days of the year.


Consider a Disney Resort Hotel

Too often, potential Guests think staying at a Walt Disney World Resort is an expensive option outside their price range. The good news is that Walt Disney World value resorts offer hotel rooms competitive with some hotels off the property and include amenities like transportation to Disney Parks and extra magic hours in the Park that will add up to savings. No drive time, gas costs, no traffic stress, and no Disney Park parking fees are things Guests staying on the property can enjoy.

Disney's All-Star Sports Resort

Credit: Disney

Disney Resort Guests can hop on Disney transportation and head to Disney Parks and Disney Springs stress-free. Hotel prices off the property and Walt Disney World Resort prices vary by season and Resort, but we suggest pricing resorts on the Disney Property before making a decision. Even if dollar-for-dollar you do not find a Resort hotel room to be cheaper- the value you get for the vacation investment may still be worthwhile.


Research and Weigh Ticket Options

Walt Disney World ticket prices vary by Park, Park Hopper option, and the time of year you visit. Take the time to research and understand Walt Disney World tickets on the Disney website. Weigh all the options to understand the days you need to spend extra money on for a Park Hopper option. Some days you will enjoy staying in one Park for the day. If you are visiting during a hot time of the year, you may want to visit a Disney Water Park. Theme Park ticket planning is a big part of the vacation booking process and has significant budget implications.

Disney Ticket Calendar Website Booking

Credit: Disney Website

Hop on a chat with a booking Cast Member on the Disney website to ask any questions about tickets, expirations, or the booking process. After you have purchased Disney World tickets, you will still need to secure a Park reservation for each day you are in a Disney Park. The great news is, ironing out all the details in the booking process means the annoying details of your Disney World trip are done, and you can enjoy the magic on vacation!

Plan Days Outside the Park

An easy way to enjoy the magic of Walt Disney World without the cost of a Park ticket is to plan a day or multiple days outside the Park. My family enjoys spending the day in the Resort pool, taking a morning to sleep in, and enjoying an afternoon at Disney Springs. Walt Disney World Resorts are so beautiful and unique that you can spend a day Resort hopping via Disney transportation to enjoy the sights, sounds, shopping, and snacks at each Resort.


Credit: STK Orlando

You could even hop in a car and explore other parts of Orlando if you are looking for a change of pace. Regardless of what you choose to do with your day out of the Park, get away from the idea that you have to buy a Disney World Park ticket each day to enjoy Walt Disney World; that simply is not true. Breaking from the Parks adds up to significant savings.

Use Reward Points

Disney Resort Room Family

Credit: Disney

With so many great credit card cash-back programs, you can likely rack up points and travel miles that can help you save on vacation. Fuel reward gift cards for those driving to Walt Disney World, sky miles for those flying, and cash-back rewards to help with extra vacation expenses are all helpful ways to enjoy a cheaper Walt Disney World vacation.

Bring Your Food

I enjoy Disney Dining and Disney Park snacks, but it’s no secret that the costs add up quickly, especially if you are feeding a family. Bringing your food to Walt Disney World can mean significant savings. Even if you have to pay for Resort grocery delivery upon arrival, families of four vacationing a week at Walt Disney World will still save money.


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Don’t worry! You do not need to sacrifice all the fun vacation food you hoped to try. You can still chow down on treats in EPCOT World Showcase and Magic Kingdom. Give your budget a boost by having an in-room breakfast daily and enjoy free Resort room coffee instead of splurging on a $5 morning Starbucks in the Park.

Save Money On Vacation Prep


Credit: DisneyTips

There is no need to be overwhelmed with costs as you prepare each kid’s suitcase for a Disney vacation. Thrift and second-hand shops like Goodwill are great go-to spots to grab t-shirts, shorts, and hats for a vacation. When it’s time to pack snacks and essentials, plan ahead—couponing for the snacks, toiletries, sunscreen, and medications your family will need on vacation. Roll the cash you save into Disney tickets or a fun Disney Hotel souvenir or snack.

Bring Your Stroller

Stroller Parking

Credit: fox35orlando

Avoid paying stroller rental costs and losing time standing in a rental line. Bring your stroller. Bonus points: your child can relax in the stroller as you wait on Disney transportation at the end of the day.

Budget Long Term

Character Couture Salon Packages

Credit: Disney

Although it is not a way to make a Walt Disney World vacation cheaper, budgeting over the long term makes vacation more affordable. Plan for your vacation and save for a year to ensure you feel comfortable with what you plan on spending.


Hopefully, these Disney World vacation savings tips are helpful as you plan your magical vacation with your family. Remember, small savings add up to big fun on a Disney vacation!

About Katie Chapman

Hey There! I am a Georgia native with a passion for writing, traveling, cooking, decorating, pugs and of course all things Disney. Growing up in South Georgia just a few hours from Walt Disney World made for a magical childhood. Some of my best memories were made on Main Street U.S.A. with my sister watching SpectroMagic nighttime parade or beside my grandparents, parents and extended family at Chef Mickey’s celebrating on a family vacation. Epcot was my favorite park from a young age and I credit it with my interest in and love for international travel. As a kid I loved meeting characters and watching films around World Showcase and could spend hours exploring each of the countries in Epcot. These days, my husband and I get away to explore a new country whenever we can and even incorporate trips to The Disney Store and Disney Parks around the world in our travels. One of our travel goals is to visit every Disney Park in the world. I love writing about Disney restaurants, park tips, Disney outfit inspiration and Disney history. Pocahontas is my favorite Disney Princess (90s kid here!) but Mr. Toad is my spirit animal. When I’m not at Disney I’m reading about park history, watching Disney documentaries and shopping vintage Disney merch for park outfits. I never pass up a reservation to Ohana, an empty seat on Living with the Land or a Violet Sake.