How do you do it? Disney every year?

Discussion in 'Budget Board' started by uncspin, May 25, 2009.

  1. uncspin

    uncspin Mouseketeer

    Mar 4, 2008
    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!
  2. Avatar

    Google AdSense Guest Advertisement

    to hide this advert.
  3. caligirl stuck in va

    caligirl stuck in va Mouseketeer

    Sep 5, 2007
    We have recently tried to go once per year to Disneyland (couldn't this year, though). We are currently planning a trip to the 55th Anniversary for Disneyland in 2010. We stay off site (even though I am D-Y-I-N-G to stay @ Grand Californian!!), we cut back some on eating out while on our trip and although we do save money throughout the year, it is mostly our tax return that gets earmarked for Disney. For us, the airfare kills our budget. A great deal is $900 just for airfare, but has cost us just under $1500 (4 people, Round Trip).

    I do like forward to others' responses here as I am always wondering how people get to do Poly or GF or WL even once, let alone every year or multiple times a year. Sometimes I think I was born into and married into the wrong family (money-wise I mean). But then I have to remember that most of our money goes to our house. If we had done a little less there, we would have more money in our budget for vacation.
  4. Tnkrbelle565

    Tnkrbelle565 DIS Veteran

    May 14, 2004
    We make Disney a priority like it was any other bill! We have extra taken out of our taxes and our return is always MORE than enough to cover a trip. We have never paid "rack rate" for a Disney trip yet so that is also a big plus for us. We recently bought a house so the Disney trip is being scaled back this year (POP for only 5 days) but we are still going. I also went for a 4 day trip with DIS friends in February. In exchange, I didn't get any bday/Christmas/mother's Day/valentine's day gifts. Good trade off in my opinion. ;)
  5. Monny2AE

    Monny2AE DIS Veteran

    Aug 21, 2008
    This is the first time we are going back within a year and I am making it happen by saving every extra dollar and watching what we spend, we basically budget for Disney. We will be staying Value resort this time and we don't mind since we spend most of our time at the parks. I pack special snacks and drinks that my kids aren't used to having at home and it saves a little $$$ when snacking in the park. We drive rather than flying- we spent about $300 for a road trip from MD to FL and back again. Airfare for 4 would have blown the bank for us.
    You don't have kids but we ask family to give our kids Disney Dollars for Christmas and birthdays so they have spend money. Since it's Disney money they won't spend it until we get there. We also go value season and are keeping our fingers crossed that Disney releases another great deal like last year!!!! If they offer the 4/3 every Jan we could keep going every year!
  6. MinnieForMe

    MinnieForMe DIS Veteran

    May 15, 2007
    We go two weeks a year with three children but we own a timeshare so we obviously stay off property. I coupon all year, we live in a modest house (below our means) and we just try to live frugally as much as possible. We use our Disney visa for everything and pay it off at the end of the month. You'd be surprised how much that "little reward" can turn into!

    We also consider any tax refund as our Disney money. I have to admit that even staying off property we spend more than $3500 some years (the year we buy our 10 day passes). Flying for a family of five usually runs us around $1500 (sorry that was for 7 of us this year) add in rental car and tickets (we try to buy multidays that last more than one year) and we are not at a "cheap" vacation.

    We couldn't afford to do these vacations when we were first married. You'll get to this point too! I think it's great that you can go every other year. Good things come to those who spend and invest wisely!
  7. delmar411

    delmar411 DIS Veteran

    Jan 25, 2007
    well most ppl don't take a deluxe vacation every year. They take budget-moderate vacations. Our family of 6 doesn't cost $3500 for 10days at WDW so it's all about where you choose to spend your dollars and whether you are willing to find a good deal or not.

    You don't need to do deluxe dining. You don't need to be on the monorail. You don't need to stay at a deluxe hotel or at least get some discounted rooms if you do want to stay there. You can price out better ticket ticket options. Etc...
  8. figgy4me

    figgy4me Disney Crazy

    Sep 3, 2001

    DH & I try to go once a year (+ an extra once in a while). BUT, we have never stayed anywhere but the value resorts or offsite. The monorail system is a lot better than buses... it just comes down to how often you want to go. We see many electric wheelchairs and just scooters using the buses.
    We drive down and have our own vehicle when we want/need it. We stay at resorts some, also.. Can't beat $300-$400/week for a 1 or 2-bdrm condo. But when you stay offsite it is another $12/day parking (unless you use an AP). But eating is usually cheaper offsite and we actually make sandwiches and cook breakfast occasionally and save money.
  9. a1tinkfans

    a1tinkfans Spreading Some Pixie Dust Today!

    Aug 12, 2006
    I think it depends on what type of vacation you are looking for really.

    I actually find Disney more reasonable than other vacations we have done in the recent past (a 7 night cruise for 3 was 6K with air )
    For Disney we always go for some type of "break" be it AAA room only or Free dine, so to us the price is okay....I also use Disney Visa, so that $$ comes in handy as well.......This year we're staying longer (11/10 in Aug/free dine .) though I am contemplating reducing it, not due to cost but due to possible Overkill....I already know we're doing another cruise 6/10 and I'll HAVE to get in my Disney fix, so I am thinking a nice short trip in 10/10.....we do not live above our means, but even I have cut back some, out of frustration of higher costs, not so much because I need to "pinch", but because I just feel so ripped off on basically everything lately.......gas, food, restaurants...

    I think in this economy everyone should have atleast the 9 mos worth of back up $$ and that is something we have subscribed too for years, so even with this downturn, we did really not have to make any major changes to our lifestyle, we just "tweaked" what we thought we should.......if I had to skip disney a year, so be it.......we're blessed to be in our situation and we know it!
    Best of Luck to You!! :wizard:
  10. wall*e2008

    wall*e2008 DIS Veteran

    Jul 18, 2008
    At your age I could not afford to go to WDW every year. I can now, but I had to work on getting my debt paid off first.

    Also we never do the DP or would even consider the DxDP, we stay at the level we can afford that week. Also I have never spent $3500 for a 7 day trip even when we stay at a deluxe. We get an AP and only go if we get an AP or another discount.
  11. englishteacha

    englishteacha <font color=magenta>I've just gotten crazier over

    Apr 2, 2006
    We only do Disney every 3-4 years, so I can't help you there. I get a stipend for extracurriculars which is our vacation money, but it's only around $1000, so when we do a Disney trip, we plan ahead and save up, knowing we'll have the $1000 to start us off. All our trips are frugal, though. We are careful what we spend and look for the best bargains.
  12. SilverL

    SilverL My DH thinks he's Tarzan and I'm Jane. Go figure!

    May 22, 2002
    I would love to be able to take a trip to WDW too, but living on the other side of the country makes it very difficult---AIRFARE is KILLER. Earmarking tax returns for Disney and saving all change (coins) in a jar for Disney sounds like a good idea.
  13. NC State

    NC State DIS Veteran

    Aug 11, 2005
    We're two adults and we do go every year. We do it this way.

    8 nights at a Value no special room, base tickets for 7 days for about $1200
    we go during 'free dining" but will pay out of pocket for quick breakfast
    we drive a car to the parks, we hate the bus system, it's free since we are staying in a Disney hotel

    We will book our room for next year while at Disney and we start making monthly payments as soon as we get home.

    Last year we did fly however with the budget we will drive this year.
  14. Mrs.Reese

    Mrs.Reese <font color=darkorange>My name is Dr. Reese and I

    Dec 2, 2006
    We're Florida residents so we get lots of discounts. We pretty much always stay in a value. We eat breakfast in our room and split our meals. I'm not a big eater so that helps immensely. I pull out some money every month for vacation savings.

    We don't go to the movies. We don't have cable and don't buy anything until after thinking about for 24 hours.
  15. Shmily1

    Shmily1 DIS Veteran

    Oct 23, 2007
    We went eight times last year. We usually stay at value or moderate resorts because I love them! If we stayed at the Poly every trip, we wouldn't be able to go as often. I'd rather spend my time in the parks than spend my money on the resort every time so I choose carefully when I want to stay at the deluxes, then we catch BC on a deal and stay there.
  16. dzneelvr

    dzneelvr A Disney Dolly<br><font color=deeppink>Doesn't min

    Jan 11, 2003
    We didn't do the every year trip until DS and DD were 10 and 8; prior to that it was every other year in mid January when Values rooms could be had for $49. We alternated with Dollywood in eastern Tennessee which is AWESOME:love: Those first WDW trips were during the very slow times in the parks and we learned almost everything we needed to know and now with the use of TIW discount dining, resort packages--Values only, VISA rewards, APs to cover 2 trips within 12 months, and $79 base airfares with Allegient we are more than able to do 7 days:thumbsup2 every year. It's simply the most enjoyable way for our family to relax together and with DS now 21 and DD 19, DH and I count our blessings they are as excited to go with us as they were for that first trip. Future "dreams" include a Christmas stay and a trip to introduce our 2 nephews and niece to WDW. Right now, they are on the Dollywood schedule as a pre-cursor to Disney:wizard:
  17. cjnix29

    cjnix29 DIS Veteran

    Sep 1, 2005
    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.
  18. Reagan&Co.

    Reagan&Co. DIS Veteran

    Aug 25, 2006
    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!
  19. Minnie

    Minnie DIS Veteran

    Mar 14, 2005
    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 :goodvibes

    Others choose to spend money on large homes, brand new vehicles, or electronics. So whatever works for the individual / family makes sense to me:thumbsup2

    BTW - We have never stayed at the Poly. Would love to but have never been able to justify the price tag :)
  20. StitchandPooh'sMom

    StitchandPooh'sMom <font color=magenta>Now if only I could think of s

    Feb 27, 2006
    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.
  21. maidenfairy

    maidenfairy The Force is strong

    Mar 13, 2007
    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.

Share This Page