I'm new here, and am just amazed (and confused) at the vast amount of information available! So, I'm hoping to streamline specific ideas into this one thread. We are a family of 5, all kids between 3-10. We are doing this for the first time as a HUGE event for our family. We're not folks who can do this every year, so this is a once-in-a-lifetime thing. Background (feel free to skip) is that we're a homeschooling family, DH is a disabled police officer (and former military) and we live on a small, fixed income. We are taking this trip bc our kiddos have been put through a hellish couple years, between their dad's injury, losing 2 grandparents (my parents in their 60's) suddenly, and having another grandparent very ill. We've planned and cancelled several "small" vacations due to extenuating circumstances. My dad's life (small, split 4 ways) insurance showed up in our mailbox a couple weeks ago, and we're doing this instead of paying off bills or home improvements. He was a "grand gesture" kinda guy, so I know he'd approve. anyway.... we keep going around and around about how to do this... on a budget? stay offsite, bring food, drive 16 hours, spend about $3000, OR splurge for this experience-stay onsite, do the dining plan, and fly (southwest-direct, and inexpensive) for about $4800. Any discounts available on the "big ticket" things like deluxe resort or dining? We're planning on going Jan 31-Feb 5. Thanks! Any advice or direction would be appreciated. We would likely not have the opportunity to return to WDW anytime soon, so cutting things out to save for future trips is not on our radar.