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Old 05-25-2009, 06:30 PM   #16
cjnix29
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The contemporary is cheaper than the poly and you are still on the monorail. Might want to consider that. We have gone every year for the past five years. But we do a lot of what people have said on here. Find a deal, either good discount or free dining. Save our disney rewards points from our visa. Find a deal on airfare. We always rent a car, but I search and search for a deal. We take the magical express, and then get a car on site so we can get a small car since we don't have to worry about luggage. That may not be an option for you if you have to haul the ECV. THe last two times we have stayed at a timeshare, so that was cheaper. Stayed at the poly a couple of years ago, and there is no way we could afford to go there every year.

You could get an AP for atleast one of you, and then stagger your trips so you were within one year. Then you could get the AP discount on rooms too. there are a lot of things you can do.
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Old 05-25-2009, 06:33 PM   #17
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Hi!
Think about what you can cut out this time. It makes sense to do the monorail resort due to DH in wheelchair. You should keep that part.
Even cutting back from DeluxDP to regularDP would help a little. Or is the free dining time frame an option for you?
I would cut back on the park hopper. If you will be there 7 days, you will have time to see it all without scooting around from park to park.

And it's okay to just go every other year! It makes it more special when you DO return.We skipped 2008 and are very excited to return this fall!
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Old 05-25-2009, 06:38 PM   #18
Minnie
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It all depends on your priorities

Personally traveling is something I really enjoy and my favorite destination is Florida / WDW. My job can be stressful and that time away is very important to rechange and reconnect with my family

Others choose to spend money on large homes, brand new vehicles, or electronics. So whatever works for the individual / family makes sense to me

BTW - We have never stayed at the Poly. Would love to but have never been able to justify the price tag
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Old 05-25-2009, 06:41 PM   #19
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We go to Disney about every year, but we don't spend what you are budgeting. We have stayed at the Poly, but only in value season and not for a whole week. We either go when there are codes or we at least get a AAA discount. We have only done the DDP once (it was free), but I can't imagine doing the DxDP - too much time spent in restaurants each day for our tastes.

Basically, we set a vacation budget for the year. I'd rather do five days at Disney in value season and also go somewhere else than spend a week at a deluxe with the deluxe dining plan. It's about priorities. If your priority is to stay at the Poly for a week and do the DxDP, then that's great. You just have to budget to pay for it. $3500 per year is about $70 per week - find a way to cut that out of your budget - eat out less, carpool, rent DVDs instead of going to the movies, etc. Make vacation a budget item and find the money in your budget by cutting out something else.

We also keep a change jar, as well as having the Disney Visa and using the points. I don't spend change - all my change goes into the jar for Disney. It doesn't pay for the trip, but it helps.

If you are close enough to drive or can rent a car that will accommodate the ECV, you can drive to the parks and stay anywhere you want.
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Old 05-25-2009, 07:25 PM   #20
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This is what I do,

I round up all my purchases and put the change in my savings account. You would be amazed at how quickly that adds up.

We usually go at value times of the year

I use my disney visa, and I pay it as soon as I use it. I log it in my check register and at the end of the day I log onto the visa website and make a payment. The key here is paying it off.

I've stayed at the Poly before and it was nice, but if I step down to a value I can afford to go more. The previous poster was correct the the contemp. is a little less than poly.

We drive down. Airfare is outrageous for all four of us. and if you add up wait times in airports and on the runway, it's probably the same as driving if you live in a 10 hour radius.

The Deluxe dining plan is something we never do. The regular one is fine for us. And this year we are doing Free Dining. With 2 growing boys Free dining is a blessing. and since we drive I pack the car full of stuff to munch on and drink. Snacks galore. Breakfast in the room before parks and lots of snacks in the back pack for in the parks.

We don't hop. That's an extra 200. for us and an extra 100. for you. if your there a week you don't need to hop.

Hope all that helps.
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Old 05-25-2009, 07:28 PM   #21
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The first WDW trip we took it was 8 of us..6 kiddos and 2 adults. From the minute we walked through DS and the Osbourne Lights we were hooked. We make Disney a priority trip in Dec during value season. We know each year we will be back and throughout the year we make it happen for our family. We are now down to 4 kiddos and 2 adults, still need two rooms but know that we can get by with things a little cheaper than those first few times. We have never stayed at any of the deluxe resorts...that will have to wait until there are only 2 adults!..always stay moderate, get the dining plan with 1 qs and 1 ts and very rarely buy souveniers any more. Though I will admit to purchasing lots of stuff for the christmas tree and for the grandbabies. Our trips have always been right around 3500. because of the number of people, though I think the first trip before a public discount code came out was close to 6k.

So, basically for us it is the knowledge that this is the one place we WILL be going every year. We wait for it. We coupon (or should I say 'I'), don't spend a lot on other things unless they are on sale etc.

This year, my grandbabies and their parents will be going with us on a 5 day magical vacation in December. I can not wait for it. I have been saving and saving so I can buy and buy some more for them. All of them are 3 this year and goodness they love them some Mickey Mouse and my grandd loves her 'Sleeping Booty'. So, I am having to budget a bit more this year. Picked up some extra hours at work etc.

I think going every year has a lot to do with knowing your going and setting aside that money to get there!


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Old 05-25-2009, 07:40 PM   #22
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I think you have to be realisic and set a budget early on. We have a daycare flex spending account so I use that money to pay for our trip, we never stay at a deluxe hotel, always a moderate (I have never tried a value). We go during a good special, free dining, etc. We drive, bring snacks, drinks, etc. Never buy park hoppers or water park.
We probably shouldn't be going this year with the economy such as it is but since it doesn't seem to be getting better we may not be able to afford to go next year!
We also live in a modest house, and try to be frugal at home.
It is all about priorities and planning really.
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Old 05-25-2009, 07:57 PM   #23
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gift cards

This year I started asking for Disney Gift cards for birthday/holidays. I currently have $300 saved up with those and my birthday is tomorrow . Between our tax return, savings, and gift cards we will go back this October for our Anniversary & dd 1st bday.

For us it depends on the kind of trip we want. We did Deluxe hotel & basic dining for our honeymoon for 5 days. Then Deluxe hotel & deluxe dining for our family trip for 5 days. Last march was just a quick get away so value and quick service dining... I think our next one will be Moderate hotel & basic dining.

Originally we said we would come back every 2 years, then every 1 1 /2 years...now it will be twice this year!

Where there is a will there is a way. If you HAVE to have Deluxe dining & hotel...then you may not go every year. We have learned to comprimise. The parks are more important than the hotel for us anyways.
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Old 05-25-2009, 07:59 PM   #24
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We go on much shorter trips, we stay in value (which I see isn't an option for you), we only do the regular dining plan (or none at all, and just do counter services only). We use our Disney Visa all the time so we usually have a couple of hundred dollars in bonus bucks to apply to our room. We do only hopper passes, NOT waterparks/more.

I've never spent more than 1800 for a Disney trip though, and that's including my 7 day trip this summer. We transfer 50 dollars a week from our checking each payday into an ING account that is solely for our vacations
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Old 05-25-2009, 08:03 PM   #25
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Quote:
Originally Posted by uncspin View Post
How do you do it??
DH and I are late 20s/early 30s with no kids. We love going to WDW but sometimes the money just gets to me. I guess part of it is because I didn't go on "nice" vacations as a kid - my parents' idea of a vacation was going to Kings Dominion for 2 days....

Because DH uses an electric wheelchair, he prefers the Polynesian/monorail resorts. I don't care for the buses all that much, so I also prefer the Poly. How in the world do you afford $3,500+ each year to go to Disney (approx. cost for 2 people, DxDP, Park Hopper, 7 days/6 nights)? Any suggestions would be much appreciated! We want to go every year, but I just have to figure out how to do it and still save money!
1. Don't get deluxe dining.
2. Don't stay at a deluxe resort.
3. Don't get park hoppers.

You've just cut the cost of the trip in half right there!
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Old 05-25-2009, 08:04 PM   #26
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personally, I cant see paying so much for a deluxe (just my preference).

that said, we have done offsite (it was free when my brother in law had a place on 192), shades of green (when traveling with my other brother in law), when shades was under construction they let us stay at Contemporary for $89/nt, values and moderates.

We only go during slow season for the best room rates (buy 4 get 7 or free dining being the latest examples).

I have gotten Annual Passes and done 2 trips 11 months apart and the 2nd trip I only have to pay for room, air and dining.

I get discount tickets to WDW from my employer (thought the discount is not as good as it used to be).

We have the Disney Visa card to get the rewards.

I am willing to be very flexible regarding airports I am flying into or out of (I have flown into Tampa and flown out of Baltimore on various trips - I live in NY).

Anyway to reduce the cost of a trip I will do. That way we can go more often.

kongaloosh!
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Old 05-25-2009, 08:05 PM   #27
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We used to live in NC and would take short, long weekends a couple of times a year (always driving).

Now that we are in WA we do a big 9/10 day trip each year. We go value season, value resort, and try for a promotion (like free dining this year).
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Old 05-25-2009, 08:24 PM   #28
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We're DVC members, so our room is already taken care of. When we go, we don't go to the parks every day, maybe 2 to 3 days, spend the rest of the time at the resort or around town. We don't have to fly b/c we live several hours away. So basically it's the cost of a tank of gas to get down there. Plus we don't live in a mini mansion, watch our spending during the year, don't eat out a lot, etc. We also don't have hobbies that take away money like other ppl do. Our hobby is traveling. For example, one of our friends is an avid hunter, this month alone, he paid $1400 for a new tractor that he drags behind his atv, food plots for the area he hunts at, $600 for his hunting club, and he's about to buy a new atv, and some other doodads.
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Old 05-25-2009, 08:25 PM   #29
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Consider renting points from a DVC member at the new Bay Lake Towers next trip. Still on the monorail and you can stay Sun-Fri nights much cheaper than paying for deluxe even with discounts. I have rented on several occasions with no problems. We are staying at the AKV coming up next week. Check out the DVC rent/trade board.
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Old 05-25-2009, 08:49 PM   #30
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We never pay rack rate. There's always some kind of discount out there! Also, we don't buy any souvenirs (or really any snacks, maybe 1 or 2 the whole week). We don't do DP (we usually eat one or two TS meals a day as eating is an important thing to us at WDW but when doing the numbers have found the DP not to work for us). Also, I use my Disney Visa for EVERYTHING, gas, taxes, anything and everything I can and pay it off every month. We usually have a couple hundred dollars doing this. Also, we always drive and most of the time drive straight through (or we'll stop if I can get a good deal on a hotel room). Also, after going several times, we've done a lot of the things we would rather not spend money on again, like MVMCP. Last year we got 7 nights Courtyard view (it was the best room I'd ever had at WL, top floor overlooking the pool area) at WL for $205 (inlcuding taxes/fees) a night. So $1,435 (the last time I stayed at the Poly, although not 2008 as we stayed in an MK view concierge level room, we got a garden view room for $275 a night including tax). I also buy 10 day non-expiry hopper passes through the mousesavers.com link to undercovertourist.com. Disney passes CONSTANTLY go up in price and, if you're not planning on doing Disney packages, you can get good deals. I bought two last trip (this time with the extras on them as DBF loves golf and I love water parks and since we used 5 days on them we can use the other 5 days next time and have things to do on our non-park days) for $480 a piece (including tax and free shipping) and they'll last us two trips. So $960. Food costs us about $800-$1,000, depending on where we eat. We've gotten into eating more CS during our last trip so we only spent about $600 for the week. So usually a trip total for the two of us is about $3k (but we get two trips out of the tickets). We're now spreading our trips out as I want to visit some other places and I want to miss Disney (which I wasn't, going every year, and it also gives me more time to save up some Disney Rewards dollars!). Staying at the Poly is great and now I think my DBF is spoiled as that's the only place he wants to stay (he wasn't a huge fan of the decor of WL)!

Oh, so another thing I did was to figure out how much at max the trip was going to cost, divide it by however many paychecks I got between then and the time I wanted to go to Disney and have my ING savings account automatically take the money out from each paycheck. I do this for all vacations (even mini-weekend ones). So the $3-3,500 that seems overwhelming turns into $145 (or less if we already have tickets and plan on eating more CS meals) a paycheck. Plus you're getting interest! (not a lot these days)
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