So, since we just came back from Disney...I thought I'd share the top 5 tips that I learned about how to save money on your magical vacation.
1. Pack lunch. Take PB&J, Pringles (so they don't get crushed), a piece of fruit, and a dessert for all. Don't forget water bottles and juice boxes! By doing this you will save app. $40 for a family of 4 (at a counter service restaurant).
2. Go to Downtown Disney. Its completely free to get in and to park. Nice aatmosphere - great photo opportunities - fun fountains. Also, there is a gift shop there where you can pick 4 items for $10. This is a great way to find fun souvenirs or stocking stuffers (we bought Disney Christmas ornaments there for 2.50 to remember our trip!)
3. If you are renting a stroller, rent as many days as you can in advance (aka the first day that you are there.) Disney gives you a discount for renting multiple days at once (ours was $13/day instead of $20/day) and then you get to wait in much shorter lines the next days...
4. Make your own autograph book at home before you leave. Attach a pen to a notebook (we used a mini spiral scrapbook) and save major money at the parks. If you have to buy one there, expect to pay at least $10.
5. Purchase souvenirs either before or after your trip...try to avoid the park stores as much as possible. We went to a local Disney store 3 weeks before our trip and stocked up on t-shirts for our family during a sale ($6/kids, $8/adults). We also went to a FL themed gift shop as we were leaving town to buy fun things like: Disney puzzles, necklaces, a Buzz wallet, books, magnets, and all sorts of fun little things. We spent less than $40 at this store and got a very large bag-full of fun momentos!
Just a taste from this trip - much, much more to come that I've learned in future posts :)