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Old 12-28-2012, 02:52 PM   #1
scoutie
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Am I naive to think

That it's possible not to spend a ton of money on our six day trip to Disney? We've already bought plane tickets, park tickets, hotel at Port Orleans, and the dining plan. Character meals, autograph books, glow sticks for the parades have already been purchased. Each of my three kids will have a $50 Disney gift card to use in the parks. I know a few things will probably come up (Dole Whips!) but is it possible to not spend much more than has already been spent? Give it to me straight. If I'm being naive, let me know. I'd really rather not dip into my savings, though.


UPDATE: I'm back, and I'm happy to say that I did stick to my budget. The kids actually had a bit of money left over on their cards (they wanted Mickey ears and a toy after the Star Tours experience), but that was all. The dining plan kept them (and myself....I even got a Dole Whip on it!) well fed, with a snack a day on the plan (desserts at lunch and dinner, so they didn't want any sweets).I did end up tipping Mousekeeping $20 over my "$5 a day" original plan, because I felt they really went above and beyond. All of you were right--the tips at dinner (and my nightly wine/margarita) were the most expensive part, but I had budgeted appropriately ahead of time.

So yes! It was possible not to spend a ton of money in the parks. My dd cried when we left, so I think she had a pretty amazing experience without having to spend the extra money! The princess lunch was her favorite part and my eldest son's favorite part was fighting the Dark Side at Hollywood Studios. My toddler's favorite part was taking the bus everywhere, lol!

Last edited by scoutie; 01-08-2013 at 02:13 PM.
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Old 12-28-2012, 02:53 PM   #2
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We don't do souvenirs for the most part. One our 7 day trip last Sept we spent under $100 a day for DH and I on all food and odds and ends. I splurged on day on a new hoodie.
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Old 12-28-2012, 02:57 PM   #3
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That's reassuring! I'm not big on souvenirs at all, and my kids are good at knowing once their money is spent, it's gone. They won't be whining or begging for more. Since we're doing the dining plan, I shouldn't have to spend much on food, right?

I am disciplined when it comes to money, and won't buy things if its not in my budget. I enjoy splurging on vacation, but the Disney vacation is becoming much more expensive than I had thought. More than we've spent on trips internationally. I won't use credit cards if I can't pay them off the next month. I guess what I was asking if there were things that were going to pop up (extra fees, etc.)

We travel as a family quite often, but reading reviews of Magic Kingdom on TripAdvisor scared me. $$$$$$ was the title of many reviews.

Last edited by scoutie; 12-28-2012 at 03:08 PM.
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Old 12-29-2012, 03:58 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by scoutie
That's reassuring! I'm not big on souvenirs at all, and my kids are good at knowing once their money is spent, it's gone. They won't be whining or begging for more. Since we're doing the dining plan, I shouldn't have to spend much on food, right?

I am disciplined when it comes to money, and won't buy things if its not in my budget. I enjoy splurging on vacation, but the Disney vacation is becoming much more expensive than I had thought. More than we've spent on trips internationally. I won't use credit cards if I can't pay them off the next month. I guess what I was asking if there were things that were going to pop up (extra fees, etc.)

We travel as a family quite often, but reading reviews of Magic Kingdom on TripAdvisor scared me. $$$$$$ was the title of many reviews.
There are theme park reviews on Trip Advisor?! Wow! I had no idea. I take all TA reviews with a huge grain of salt. It sounds like you are all set OP! It must feel great to have everything sorted out. My only suggestion would be to budget some amount daily for unexpected things. You don't have to use it, but that way if something unexpected comes up you are prepared :-) Have a magical trip! How cute your little one saying it's her dream come true!
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Old 12-29-2012, 05:53 PM   #5
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Even though you are on the Dining Plan, don't forget that tips are not included. We usually tip 18-20% and tips usually run us anywhere from $250-$300 depending on the number of table service restaurants in which we dine. Usually you will have to tip bell services if you utilize them on your way in or out and we usually tip mousekeeping everyday if we are in a regular room. (Usually stay DVC.) All of those tips can really add up.
We always budget a bundle for souvenirs and if we come home with extra, *bonus!*
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Old 12-29-2012, 06:00 PM   #6
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I'm going to have to disagree with most everyone else. To me, $50 is not much fun money for a week long trip. Especially at a park where everything costs so much! $50 is one hoodie. Or a tee shirt and some candy. Not much.

I was at the parks earlier this month with 3 other adults, and I spent almost $500 even though we were on the dining plan. Most of it went to tips (and twice an alcoholic beverage) and other random stuff. I only purchased 2 tops for myself, and one for my sister.

When a pop costs $3, your money doesn't go very far.
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Old 12-28-2012, 02:56 PM   #7
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Only you know who you are. Nobody can really answer that for you.

I know for me I would not go without at least 1000.00 to spend on whatever. I hate having a budget on vacation so I budget way more than what I know I will spend and I usually come back home with extra money.

But I mean that's just me. I know for a fact that my SIL could budget 150.00$ for the whole week and not spend over that.

It's all up to you and your spending/discipline habits.
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Old 12-28-2012, 02:58 PM   #8
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all the souvenier stores makes it so tempting to buy buy buy, but you must resist the urge.
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Old 12-28-2012, 03:03 PM   #9
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If you're not a shopper, you'll be fine. My kids also only had a $50 gift cards and if you're clear that that's the absolute limit for them, there should be no problem.

You will need money for tips, both in the restaurants and possibly at the hotel.

Do stay out of the stores. I'm not a shopper, so that part is easy for me. But once you get in there- watch out! Disney makes really cute stuff, even non-shoppers get sucked in pretty easily.
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Old 12-28-2012, 03:06 PM   #10
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Smile Yes!

~You have the dining plan, so you only need to tip! Have fun!
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Old 12-28-2012, 03:10 PM   #11
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Money has been allocated for tips ( former waitress in college!)

Thank you for the input. I've been to Disney twice before, but it's been a long time, and I've never gone with kids.


drdisneymd can you elaborate?
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Old 12-28-2012, 03:10 PM   #12
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you can do it

Like everyone has said....it's the shopping that costs $$$! If you resist that temptation, then no, there shouldn't be too much out of pocket left. The tips are probably the biggest part, or if you want to order an appetizer or get an extra snack. Last year was our FIRST trip, but after 5 days, we hadn't spent much at all, because we hadn't shopped...then we went and did the souvenier shopping at the end of our trip...it added up fast! if you rented a car, you will need gas money, and possibly toll money depending on where you go. We go to walmart and get some snacks/breakfast to keep in the room.
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Old 12-28-2012, 03:18 PM   #13
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I feel better!! I should put a disclaimer to say I do like clothes shopping, fine dining, good wine and the spa. If it's not in the budget, though, I can resist.

Thank you for bringing up tipping. I tip service professionals generously. It is always part of my vacation budget.
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Old 12-28-2012, 03:01 PM   #14
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We have

Once our tickets/hotel and dining plan has been purchased we spend VERY little out of pocket. Money for dining tips at table service meals and housekeeping tips comprise the majority of our out of pocket expense. We get a bottle of water with our meal and refill and usually use our snack credit for something to use for breakfast. We do get some bottled water to use in the room and I bring some snack items.

We have shared large counter service meals (at Cosmic Rays and Flame Tree) and used the extra counter service credit for a large breakfast (also shared) several times during the trip.

Good luck and have a great time!
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Old 12-29-2012, 10:12 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KapBoy77
Only you know who you are. Nobody can really answer that for you.

I know for me I would not go without at least 1000.00 to spend on whatever. I hate having a budget on vacation so I budget way more than what I know I will spend and I usually come back home with extra money.

But I mean that's just me. I know for a fact that my SIL could budget 150.00$ for the whole week and not spend over that.

It's all up to you and your spending/discipline habits.
I completely agree with this!
There are ways to cut back costs it just depends on what you are willing to do to accomplish that. We brought gift cards and Visa cards that we saved up through the year prior to the trip. Asked family to give us Disney gift cards or Visa cards for birthdays and holidays, etc. We also put away cash here and there. By the time the trip came up we had over $300 in cash and cards to spend! As a family of 4 we only put $400 on our cc the whole week. We did get snacks and drinks delivered to the room from gardengrocer.com and got resort mugs the first day so we had a jump on food and snacking. I ink we only bought snacks 3 times the whole trip. And most of that was pretzels as they are my daughters fav food. And they were shaped like Mickey! Who could resist that? Even with a $4.75 price tag... Haha
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