Can I really pay for entire trip in Gift Cards?

Discussion in 'Budget Board' started by Chughes812, Dec 6, 2018.

  1. Chughes812

    Chughes812 Earning My Ears

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    I went to Target buy GC's for our upcoming trip, Forty $50 GC because that was the largest denomination they had. But I couldn't pull the trigger in putting down that much $$ in GC. It is our first trip and the cast members have told me that yes I can pay for room/dining package in GC. I just don't want to be stuck with Disney GC as we will not be back for a while....

    I don't know what held me back, irrational fear maybe.
     
  2. gottalovepluto

    gottalovepluto DIS Veteran

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    It's not irrational. Yes, you can pay for Disney Room, Disney Dining, Disney souvenirs with gift cards. BUT what if something happens and you don't make it on your trip? The money is then tied up in Disney gift cards. If you wouldn't salvage the trip to do again later that is a serious amount of cash down the drain.

    Personally, I'm all in on gift cards for trips because even if something happens and I last minute cancel the trip I know I'll go to Disney again in a year or two. So far nothing has happened and I've saved a bundle on my trips!
     
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  4. bigeyedfish

    bigeyedfish Mouseketeer

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    I did! The only cash I will be bringing is for tips. Otherwise our entire package was paid for with discounted Disney GCs. The kids are getting some for Christmas for souvenirs, too!
     
  5. georgina

    georgina DIS Veteran

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    Be sure to go online to disneygiftcard.com to register and combine them so you won't have so many to deal with. You can combine them all on several cards (up to $1000 max per card). SO much easier than dealing with hundred of separate cards!

    Universal doesn't have this combining feature, I took so many $100 GC for Thanksgiving (we had 3 rooms) my purse weighed a ton on our flight.
     
  6. gottalovepluto

    gottalovepluto DIS Veteran

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    Where did you acquire discounted Univ cards?
     
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  7. Dakota731

    Dakota731 DIS Veteran

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    HOW much do you save doing this? Do you bring them along to use to pay for food too?
     
  8. wdwdreamin2

    wdwdreamin2 Mouseketeer

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    Are there any restaurants or shops that will NOT take Disney gift card?
     
  9. Marionnette

    Marionnette Children see magic because they look for it

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    I aim for a 20% savings on Disney GCs. So, it can be a significant savings. However, those deals are rare and you really have to work hard all year to snag enough GCs to pay for an entire trip.

    I mainly use them to pay for my DVC dues, APs and dining at Disney restaurants. But I also use them for some souvenirs. I do like others do. I don't bring a stack of GCs. I photograph the reverse side with my phone and then transfer balances as needed from those GCs to the one or two physical GCs that I have in my possession at Disney using the disneygiftcard.com website.

    Yes, there are. If the restaurant or merchant is not owned by Disney and does not accept payments using the Magic Bands, then you can't pay with Disney GCs either. There are some Disney Springs locations that would fall into this category. Also, a couple kiosk locations on the Boardwalk and, of course, restaurants at the Swan and Dolphin. It's always best to ask before you dine.
     
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  10. goodeats

    goodeats DIS Veteran

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    Last year we booked a package with a Travel Agent and besides the initial deposit on a CC, I put the balance on Disney Gift Cards. I bought them through out the year using various sources. My favorite method was to use my Amex that paid me 6% back at grocery stores and purchase them at Kroger/Ralphs which then offered 4x fuel rewards and I would get up to $1 off per gallon on gas. We have an SUV and a big truck so this offered us up to 14% off, which we would never get through Disney.

    I also used them to pay for food at Disney my using our Magic Band and then paying for the balance in the hotel lobby.

    But yes, there is a risk that if you don't take your trip and you need the money the refund would come in Disney Gift Cards. We live close enough to Disneyland that we could use them eventually, but cash is king sometimes.
     
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  11. RangerPooh

    RangerPooh DIS Veteran

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    We've done it. We purchased Disney GC at Target with our RedCard and at Sam's Club (small percentage off there too). It allowed us to pay over time using the discounted GC. Our family goes regularly so it wasn;t a risky move. Just keep the gift card that you load everything onto. I'd load the $1000 onto a card, make a payment and reload it. In the parks I'd come prepared incase we decided to eat somewhere at Disney Springs that didn't accept the GC.
     
  12. gottalovepluto

    gottalovepluto DIS Veteran

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    Yes, you can pay for in park food too with them and at select Disney Springs locations. We look at the menus and approximate how much we will spend to determine how much to get in gift cards. You're savings on gc varies depending on how much work you want to put into it. At minimum you should get 5% off by buying at Target with your Redcard.
     
  13. tink89

    tink89 DIS Veteran

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    Yes you can pay for a trip with gift cards. I paid about $4k or more on a trip with gift cards bought with BB/SB or other offers. My trip is paid off and we are leaving in 2 weeks. I also have enough in Gift cards to pay for the parking, shopping, misc. I have kept earning and have more in GC for another trip. For us there will always be another trip so i don't mind buying the gift cards. Since i do the BB/SB offer i am now keeping some in Paypal for other trips. I can convert to Disney Gift cards in needed.
     
  14. georgina

    georgina DIS Veteran

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    My local grocery store, Giant Eagle, sells gift cards. I have an AmEx card that gives me 6% cash back on grocery store purchases, plus Giant Eagle give fuel rewards. When they do double rewards on gift cards a few times a year I stock up. With the 6% credit card cash and 12% free gas (40¢/$100 GC, for 30 gallons), it is effectively 18% back

    The fuel perks expire in 3 months so I have to plan carefully. I do drive a lot, delivering meals on wheels and driving cancer patients to treatment, so the gas goes pretty fast (one reason I am thinking about an electric car for my next vehicle!)
     
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  15. AlohaNow

    AlohaNow Just keep swimming...

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    I currently have $1,200 in Disney GCs that I paid $600 for in total. Both DH and I got the Chase Visa this year, so that got us $500 absolutely for free! The other $100 in savings has been in much smaller increments. Target helps, and then sometimes I pay full price at my grocery store, but I get a deal on fuel points. We don't even have a specific Disney trip planned. These might be used for WDW, DLR, or DCL. I plan to churn for three years total, and then we'll decide on what our "free" vacation will be! And yes, if it's a park trip, we will bring some cards to pay for food.
     
  16. Chughes812

    Chughes812 Earning My Ears

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    Thanks for all of the replies! I went back to Target to save 5% and was able to pay my balance (resort/dining plan) with GC. Yay!!
     
  17. bigbabyblues

    bigbabyblues DIS Veteran

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    Congrats on the savings! Make sure you keep all of the gift cards in case you have to cancel. They will be refunded exactly the way you paid, so if you had (example) 20 cards for $50 each, that is how they will refund it.
     
  18. 4luv2cdisney

    4luv2cdisney DIS Veteran

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    I have a question:

    I have a gift card designated as my "main" card on the Disney giftcard site. I buy smaller gc and transfer them all to the "main". When it is full, I pay for something and then start reloading again. So, in theory, if I were to cancel ALL of it, it would be more than $1000 (the per card limit) needing to go back on that card.

    Do I need to save all the "little cards" I transferred from? Is that how they refund it?
     
  19. starry_solo

    starry_solo DIS Veteran

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    It would be to the one card. You can call Disney to explain the situation and they should issue multiple gcs
     
  20. Dakota731

    Dakota731 DIS Veteran

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    What store does that? I’ve seen 5% off at Target but never 20% off
     
  21. HuskyGal

    HuskyGal Mouseketeer

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    I have a question about refunds. If you’ve lost or trashed your gift cards, will they issue new ones?
     

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