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Old 12-28-2012, 01:52 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 01:13 PM.
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Old 12-28-2012, 01:53 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, 01:56 PM   #3
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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, 01:57 PM   #4
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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.

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Old 12-28-2012, 01:58 PM   #5
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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, 02:01 PM   #6
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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 12-28-2012, 02:03 PM   #7
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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, 02:06 PM   #8
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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, 02:10 PM   #9
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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, 02:10 PM   #10
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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, 02:18 PM   #11
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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, 02:24 PM   #12
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We spend little extra. Having the dining plan we pay out of pocket for breakfast and I'm not a big breakfast eater so a pastry or bagel is fine with me. We have also given our son a gift card for spending money for him. That works great. Once its gone the spending is over. We also bring with us extra snacks for the day so we don't have to splurge on more than the one entitled snack we're allowed! I'm sure you can do it. Have FUN!!!!!!!!!!
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Old 12-28-2012, 02:28 PM   #13
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Thanks for weighing in so quickly! I'm very excited! We leave Tuesday. My five year old keeps saying it is her dream come true.
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Old 12-28-2012, 02:29 PM   #14
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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 second this. The bolded is my vacation budgeting style as well. If you're good at keeping on track, even the allure of the gift shops shouldn't sway you too much.

Have fun!

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Old 12-28-2012, 02:35 PM   #15
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I don't think you're naive at all. On our last trip, beyond tips, we spent very little. My kids also had gift cards and when the money was gone, it was gone. Them having their own gift cards was an excellent way of them determining if they *really* wanted something or not. None of us felt deprived at all.

This trip, the kids also have gift cards to spend. I am budgeting more oop because we are doing a cruise as well this time around.
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