Most kids (and a lot of adults) dream of going to Disneyland. Unfortunately, a trip to Disney isn’t cheap – most families of four end up spending well over £1000 once you add up the cost of travel, accommodation, park entry, food and all the extras. Of course, you don’t have to spend this much. By using a few of the following tricks, you may be able to cut your overall Disney costs by half, making it much easier to manage on a tight budget…
Travelling to Disneyland Paris is obviously a lot cheaper than heading to the states. You can get very cheap flights to Paris and there’s even the opportunity to drive and possibly save further money (taking a ferry is cheaper than taking the Eurostar).
Of course, if you’ve got your heart set on the US, Orlando is much cheaper to get to than California. This doesn’t just include the flights, which are considerably cheaper because of the distance – Florida’s Disney World also has cheaper tickets on average.
Once you’ve got your destination set, you then need to consider the individual parks within each complex. Most people don’t realise that Disney World in Florida is divided into four parks for which you can pay separately, whilst Disney Land Paris is divided into two. Decide whether you want to visit all the parks – there’s no point paying for entry to all of them if you’re only interested in one.
The cost of travelling to Disneyland can also vary depending on the time of year you visit. Summer from the end of May to the beginning of August is the most expensive time for prices on park tickets, flights and hotels. By booking out of season, you could save a lot of money (just make sure to avoid the Christmas period as prices shoot up again then).
Weekdays are also cheaper than weekends, so this could be something to consider too.
How long you plan to stay can also have an impact on the price. Staying for more days can work out cheaper per day in some cases. In fact, as these 2019 Sam’s Club Disney tickets show, there may even be the option of a free day if you buy 4 days (in other words, you get a 5th day for free!). A great idea if you’ve been debating whether to stay a full week or a few days.
Not everyone may want to dedicate their whole holiday to Disney. For instance, some people going to Disneyland Paris may also wish to spend a couple days seeing the sights of Paris itself. Whilst those visiting Orlando may want to visit the other theme parks in the area such as Universal Studios and Busch Gardens. Not to mention other attractions in Florida such as the Kennedy Space Center. A couple days at Disney may be all you can spare.
As for accommodation, you should be careful of booking a hotel on one of the parks. Staying outside the park could save you a lot of money – just check out these hotels at Budget Places. Usually the further you stay away from the parks, the cheaper the rates. Some of these hotels will have free shuttle services so that you can still easily get to the parks without renting a hire car.
Don’t want to stay outside the park? Some people may want to experience the magic and convenience of having accommodation within the park. In this case, your best option for grabbing a discount might be to look into package deals. You won’t save as much money as staying in a hotel outside the park, but you’ll save money compared to paying for accommodation separately.
There are plenty of places to get food and drink at the Disney resorts, but you’ll pay premium prices. You’re much better off bringing a packed lunch with you to save money. Don’t forget to load up on water before you enter the park too – bottled water at Disney World costs $3.50, so bring your reusable water bottle.
You and your kids will probably want to bring back some souvenirs. Set a budget for souvenirs so that you’re not persuaded into overspending on Disney branded clothes, toys and accessories. You can even use the opportunity to teach your kids the art of budgeting by giving them their own spending money.
Have you been to Disney? What budget saving tips do you have?