"Parkless" Orlando Trip????

Discussion in 'Budget Board' started by choppee, Dec 8, 2018.

  1. choppee

    choppee A True Louisiana Creole!

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    Please help me with this question...what can we do to have fun on a 'parkless' trip to Orlando?

    We were going to purchase tickets, but they are just out of the budget due to an unfortunate major car issue we had to resolve. We'd already confirmed and paid for the resort, so we're going...don't want to loose the money (Bonnet Creek). Does anyone have any ideas about what to do in Orlando that's cheap or darn near free? We'll have some extra $$$, but not too much and I'm looking for ideas. Thank in advance!
     
  2. TwoMisfits

    TwoMisfits DIS Veteran

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    When are you going and how much do you want to spend (if anything)? How many people? Some deals are time-oriented, and that could help...
     
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  4. choppee

    choppee A True Louisiana Creole!

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    Duh. Right! I'm sorry, you're absolutely right, we're going to be there during the Christmas holiday for nine nights.
     
  5. TwoMisfits

    TwoMisfits DIS Veteran

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    Just adults, or some kid-aged kids thrown in?
     
  6. My2CrazyGirls

    My2CrazyGirls DIS Veteran

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    This Christmas? How many people?
    There is lots to do. Have you looked into Seaworld tickets? They are way less $ than Disney and I hear it is beautiful at Christmas.
     
  7. choppee

    choppee A True Louisiana Creole!

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    We're a group of 5: two adults and three kiddos aged 12, 13 and 15.

    Haven't thought about SeaWorld...I'll give them a look, thanks! It's really hard to think about going to Orlando and NOT going to any parks...I know I sound like a spoiled brat (maybe I am???), but come ON!!! Lol
     
  8. TwoMisfits

    TwoMisfits DIS Veteran

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    Do you have a Groupon membership (I have one at $5/month)? It gives 25% off any deal, so you can make out buying them 1 at a time...and it works on every deal, even ones that don't normally take any discounts...

    For example, (I just tested this)...(it may also work with regular promo codes, but I know they limit those to 3x (although you and your husband could each buy when promos come out))...

    You can buy the 3 attraction pass for Sightseeing Pass Orlando https://www.groupon.com/deals/the-sightseeing-pass-orlando for $51.75/person...
    Then, I'd do the Pirate Dinner Adventure, and then either the Escape Game Orlando/Gatorland/Wonderworks/Titanic/Helicopter Tour...some combo of them based on interest. Now, this pass is apparently more of a pain to use and lists how you have to use it for each attraction, but cost vs annoyance when price matters...well, I'd take the annoyance:)...

    PS - Those passes are still a deal even if you can't discount them - I would actually go to their main website to see if they are offering deals if Groupon ones don't work...

    I'd also look at Seaworld passes, b/c they tend to provide a lot of bang for the buck, especially around Christmas:)...

    Here's the link https://seaworld.com/orlando/tickets-b/

    If it were me, with 3 practical teens, I'd do the 3 day passes with the $20/day all day included dine...so, your full costs (except parking) are covered in the day...meals can add up as much as park tickets, and $190/person (or $63.33/day to eat and play all day) is my normal price point for fun:)...

    And if you skip Seaworld as too pricey, I'd go with the 5 attraction pass (although Go City also has passes you could look at:)...

    Remember, Bonnet Creek has multiple pools with lazy rivers, mini golf, and resort activities, so you don't need to fill full days...you just need something fun for teens to get up for everyday:)...you could set a very low budget of $200/person for fun for the 9 days (so 1/2 of what tickets would cost you in Disney for 4 days) and see how far it goes hitting "other Florida" deals...it could be a fun game for the fam to plan:)...
     
    Last edited: Dec 8, 2018
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  9. choppee

    choppee A True Louisiana Creole!

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    Didn't know about the Groupon thing...I'll do a little research on that! And SeaWorld is looking like it might be just the thing; never have been there on Christmas!
     
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  10. afan

    afan DIS Veteran

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    I agree about the all day dining at seaworld. While I haven't done it you can check out @Gina-Gina-Bo-Bina trip report, particularily the one she's doing now that includes seaworld with the dining and a trip to gatorland. She and her DH do a lot of non park stuff using groupons and stuff. Sometimes it's just an email list sign up to get a coupon for something off a meal. You'll be able to find a ton of stuff to do outside the parks. There should be a lot of christmas activities that are geared more toward locals that you can find too.
     
  11. ruadisneyfan2

    ruadisneyfan2 DIS Veteran

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    If you'll have a car, I'd vote for a day at Kennedy Space Center. After dh pleading for years to go and I was never really interested, my parents joined us for a trip and wanted to go so I felt like I had to. We did the "Up Close" tour which was extra but worth it. I'm not sure they still offer it but it was pretty amazing.
     
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  12. AgentMama

    AgentMama Mouseketeer

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    If you have a car and your family enjoys the outdoors, there are a lot of state parks that are pretty and free or not very expensive.
     
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  13. hearts8701

    hearts8701 Castle

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    There is so much to do that is free or a low cost Visit Disney springs try bowling hot air balloon ride or a movie miniature golf resort hop the hotels are spectacular this time of year take a boat ride visit boardwalk rent bikes a carriage ride for the whole family at wilderness visit Tri circle D ranch Every Disney resort hotel has some kind of trail, but the trails around Wilderness Lodge and Ft. Wilderness are especially nice sing around the campfire and watch a Disney movie
    The campfire program at Ft. Wilderness It is held every evening, at about 7:00 pm in fall and winter near the Meadow Trading Post
     
    Last edited: Dec 9, 2018
  14. choppee

    choppee A True Louisiana Creole!

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    These are all great points and great things to look into! I've considered the Kennedy Space Center and will look into the pricing.

    The state parks are a great idea, and I hadn't thought about Fort Wilderness activities! Thank you for that!
     
  15. MantaRider

    MantaRider Earning My Ears

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    Check out the Character Warehouse for souvenir shopping. They are Disney Parks outlets, there's two of them in Orlando. We might have gone 4 times over our parkless trip last week -_-
     
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  16. nycdisneygal

    nycdisneygal DIS Veteran

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    The disney resorts are lovely and have so much to offer. You can watch MK fireworks from the polynesian beach while enjoying a dole whip! You can even watch illuminations from boardwalk area. You could do mini golf. There is a universal ticket deal now if you think that could be in your budget. City walk looks fun too. And of course Disney springs.
    And of course Kennedy Space Center I am sure is pretty awesome.
    Have a great time together ! Happy Holidays to your family!
     
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  17. powellrj

    powellrj DIS Veteran

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    The Science Center has a cool light display but I don’t know how much it costs. Celebration has ice skating and lights. Capone’s has a meal and a campy show that my teens enjoyed and there are lots of coupons. Gaylord
    Palms has the ice display and I think there is a Groupon.
     
  18. justlook3

    justlook3 Mouseketeer

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    As others have mentioned, Disney Springs and the resorts are all destinations that are low cost, especially this time of year. Gingerbread displays, entertainment, maybe even characters at the resorts. Disney Springs can give you a taste of the parks with the Christmas Tree Trail, fake snow and free entertainment. Not sure about links on this site, but check out Light Up UCF over at the University of Central Florida, Downtown Orlando's website to see what events are going on downtown when you're there (there's some free concerts and movies and if you're around on Dec 29, there's the Florida Citrus Parade) and there's more ideas listed on the website Orlando on the Cheap. Hope this helps!
     
  19. disneylove69

    disneylove69 DIS Veteran

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    Downtown Disney is awesome especially at night, Disney hotel hop. You can do the Chip and Dale sing along and move at the campground and each hotel does a movie by the pool each night. You can find out at one of the hotels or o line which movie and when. Get marshmallow and some long stick and roast marshmallows before the movie at some like the Beach clip. Watch and hear the music of the MK fireworks from Poly or GF. At AKL watch the animals and at night they do a story time. Campgrounds you can also go to the barn and see the horses used at the park. Could go to the beach as well.
     
  20. pklein09

    pklein09 <br><img src="http://www.wdwinfo.com/dis-sponsor/i

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    My son and I stayed at SSR for 3 1/2 days for college visits (arrive Saturday around noon, Sunday free day, Monday and Tuesday college visits). I used my DVC points for the room and told him I wasn't springing for park passes because the trip was already expensive enough. I told him to look through the other things to do at WDW that we normally don't do because we're in the parks. By the time we decided what we wanted to do on that one day (mini golf, seamice rental, and one other thing I can't remember), it was almost as much as entrance into MK. When I asked him what he preferred, he picked MK.

    So, my only suggestion is to look at whatever else you may want to do and decide if forgoing some of that might be worth a day in one of the parks....if that's what you really want.

    Some of the things we did do that were free: fireworks from Top of the World Lounge (DVC member benefit, but we've also watched them from the Poly beach), walking around the Boardwalk at night (magicians, jugglers, etc.), walking around Disney Springs.
     
  21. LovesTimone

    LovesTimone Christmas Day 2017

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    Lots to do here, I am assuming that you have a car so here are some thoughts from a local...

    Disney Springs, - Christmas tree trail and free live music most every night. Lots of stuff to check out, walk around and enjoy. Movie's, Bowling for some stuff to do...

    Mini Golf - Fantasia Garden or Winter Summerland

    Sea World - has some deals on 2 and 3 day tickets that include other parks - like Bush Garden in Tampa,

    Ice - at Gaylord Palms...

    City Walk at Universal - Movie's... walk around and check out everything.

    I-drive - lots of options - the Eye over Orlando. Aquarium, there are some ticket deals... Mini Golf - several spots to try out, plus we have Top Golf, Wonder Works - Google what to do on I- drive there is a whole bunch of info there.

    Head over to Cocoa Beach, for a beach day, picnic on the beach and check out Ron Jon's Surf Shop. Or head over to the gulf coast, like Clearwater beach, Fort De'Soto Park ( St. Pete Area), lots of beach bar type restaurants in both areas for eating on the water...

    Cape Canaveral is another spot, you might want to check out.

    Monorail ride - checking out all the resort - look for hidden mickeys in the decorations, you could make it a challenge who can find the most..

    You can see the fireworks from MK from the beach at the Poly.

    Check out Fort Wilderness...

    St. Augustine while its a drive a couple of hours its around 100 miles, really cool spot to check out the Fort and area right around it... Check out Harry's Seafood and bar and Grille -


    I would call and see if there are any options for you to adjust your visit and get some cash back.... I don't know if its possible, with where you are staying... and depending on how bad you want to see the parks - Could you change your reservation by dropping a day or two off, then use that cash to hit up the parks for 1 or 2 days... Not sure if this is a option...

    Our friends they work the time share game all the time, she is not a owner anywhere but with a big family she goes this route, she's alters their plans, nights and such... even unit size to get the best deal... she went from a 3 bedroom - King, 2 bedrooms with 2 queen to a 2 bed room with with one king room - 2 queen beds and a pull out couch and saved around 900.00 in May...

    Another thought is have a quick garage sale... You could make a couple hundred extra for spending money... I have made 300 to 500 bucks on a last minute sales, make all the kids get involved with it... Then have a charity pick up what's left...
     

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