You don't have to keep up with the Jones's

Discussion in 'Budget Board' started by Toon crazy, Jan 9, 2017.

  1. Toon crazy

    Toon crazy Mouseketeer

    Jun 28, 2016
    When I first began taking my family to the parks, we were not doing as financially well, as we are now. We stayed in good neighbor/offsite hotels, and limited our food and souvenir purchases. We saved every penny and budgeted for everything we wanted to do.
    But even with this kind of penny pinching vacation planning, I never envied or was jealous of someone else who could afford a different type of vacation. Yes I saw things and I planned how to do them the next time. I didn't think my families vacations were any less, because we couldn't do them at the time though.
    We are making a little more money now, so the trips are a little more frequent and the hotels are onsite. But even if we were still staying off site and bringing sandwiches into the park, our vacation would be magical.
    What about you? Are you the type of person who feels they need to keep up with the Jones's to have a good vacation? Or do you focus on your vacation and not worry about other people who may have more than you?
    LizzyS, JKalai, halfpintpeggy and 9 others like this.
  2. buzzrelly

    buzzrelly DIS Veteran

    Nov 20, 2005
    I tell my kids there will ALWAYS be people that have more than us, but we are blessed to have more than most in the world. And we are not wealthy by any means. When we go to WDW, we just focus on us and never give a thought to what other people might have. Maybe that sounds selfish, or self-centered..because it is :P We feel fortunate to be DVC members, but we have a modest amount of points which allows us to vacation about once per year (and we are totally skipping this year so I can get a 2-bedroom in 2018). I never think about the people staying in Walt's suite or the Poly Bungalows because what they do is none of my business. If they can afford to stay there then good for them.
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  4. tvguy

    tvguy Question anything the facts don't support.

    Dec 15, 2003
    We have stayed twice at the Grand Californian, and I have to admit, being 90 seconds walking time from California Adventure is a pretty sweet perk.
    Our Disneyland trips have evolved over the years. We went every year for years and stayed off site. Now we go about every 3 years, and stay on site.
    Although, this year will be different as we will be making our first trip every to Disneyworld. We will stay on site, probably the Grand Floridian. But this is a milestone trip, our 35th wedding anniversary, so the purse strings are a little looser than normal.
    DawnM, mrsheppo, Mrs. Ciz and 9 others like this.
  5. loves to dive

    loves to dive DIS Veteran

    Aug 21, 2011
    Never even met the Jone's so have no need to keep up with them.
  6. natfrac

    natfrac Mouseketeer

    May 18, 2011
    Like the OP, our financial situation can afford us to spend more on vacation now than in the past. And while I certainly appreciate being able to spend two weeks onsite at WDW, I also fondly look back on our offsite trips to DLR. We were always grateful to be able to visit a Disney park, even if it was just one day at DLR. I know my kids feel the same way. I asked them on one trip to WDW why they never had any meltdowns at DLR when they were little. And their response was--"we were just so happy to be at Disneyland".

    In general, there will always be someone who has more than I do, a bigger house, a nicer car...But every day I am grateful for what I do have.
    Toon crazy likes this.
  7. prprincess

    prprincess DIS Veteran

    Jan 31, 2006
    I don't have a competitive bone in my body, so I never feel the need to keep up with the Joneses. We do what we can afford, and that's it. Also, even if I could afford certain things, I'm a bargain shopper, so I wouldn't just buy something to buy. I look for value and worth.
    OmaDonna, firefly_ris, MEM and 8 others like this.
  8. hsmamato2

    hsmamato2 <font color=magenta>Tink in Training-Good Girl,Bad

    Mar 28, 2005
    like OP, our trips have changed over the years....from having little bitty kids,sharing condo's packing salami sandwiches into the parks daily in the stroller...... now we are older and have more 'stretching room' in our vacations...... we have great memories of all of our trips together....high end or low end, tents or hotels..... crammed in with too many people or in a big corner suite with a view..... and who exactly are the Joneses? :rotfl: I'm just thrilled that we've traveled at all over the's what I love best!
  9. DisneyNutMary

    DisneyNutMary DIS Veteran

    Jan 20, 2003
    I would bet the Jones's take one big trip every other year or less often. We are DVC members so we go more often, and indulge less on each trip. The Jones's are having more table service meals than we are, and probably taking tours and going from rope drop to goodnight kiss. I think the Jones's should try to keep up with me. We are more laid back and travel on the cheap to be able to take our more frequent trips. APs, meals cooked in our villa, no souvenirs, etc help us travel the way we do
    That said, we did evolve from offsite to onsite, sandwiches in a cooler to quick service meals, etc. as our kids have grown, so have our financial means, and over time my kids have gotten to most of every experience available, but have never gone home from a trip wishing they had done more or gotten more out of it.
    Toon crazy likes this.
  10. Dakota731

    Dakota731 DIS Veteran

    Apr 8, 2014
    I always tell me kids that there will always be someone with MORE money than us and someone with LESS. We have done super cheap Disney vacations where we stayed off site at a trash-laden, no hot water hotel and shared meals. We used our Disney VISA to get gift cards for points and got a Southwest VISA for free flights. And you know, some of those early trips were our most fun. The wonder and novelty of the first few times at Disney can't be beat. I think sometimes all the fuss with room requests, dining reservations and apps can take away some of the magic!
  11. 5kidsmommy

    5kidsmommy DIS Veteran

    Aug 16, 2013
    No, no need to keep up with the Jones. When we first started going to Disney we were definitely more budget minded. We brought food in and never did any of the experiences. We've always stayed on site but we bring our trailer and stay in the Fort so it's still really economical. My kids never really missed out on anything. I guess they never really paid much attention to what other people were doing, we always focused on what we were doing and not on what we could be doing. My oldest is now away at college and he mentioned to me last year that he now realized we didn't have a lot of money when he was little and that he is shocked by how much we did. I never focused on being thrifty, I just did it. My kids know we don't stay in budget hotels anymore and that has to do with being able to afford it now and wanting to, it has nothing to do with keeping up with anyone else. We still stay in our camper at the Fort though when we go to Disney, I can't even bring myself to splurge on a the higher priced sites because I'm still budget minded. We don't do the dining plan because it's not cost effective for us. We don't do dessert parties because they don't interest me. When my daughter and i go alone we do Disney differently, we do hoppers and character meals because that's what we like, the boys just want the rides. Oh and I don't bring food in anymore, except for bottled water. I like that I can do a vacation without cooking or worrying about packing food.
  12. ellie05

    ellie05 DIS Veteran

    Jul 24, 2012
    I have never planned a trip with other people or the jones's in mind. My first trip to WDW was when I was 4 years old and for the life of me I can't remember where we stayed but have memories of the parks. We have done Disney deluxe hotels and values and it all have been a different experience and we have memories of each trip that are special in their own way.

    I think different things are important to different people during vacations. Also want to point out that 2 families can have the exact vacations and pay very different prices. It is pointless to worry about people that have more than you because there will always be someone that has more. I don't measure my quality of life or vacation based on how much I spend but by the company and the experiences we share pointless to focus that much of your attention in money.
    Southernmiss likes this.
  13. Hikergirl

    Hikergirl DIS Veteran

    Feb 28, 2016
    I plan the vacation I want my family to have, sometimes that means a cheap camping weekend or sometimes it means a week at the shore. I don't base my vacations on what anyone else does.
  14. Canooknic

    Canooknic DIS Veteran

    Dec 20, 2012
    We regularly joke that we are the 'token poor friends' in our group, so there's no hope of us keeping up with our Jones'!!
    They have luxurious vacations, holiday homes, fabulous cars etc but they are t any happier than we are so I feel no desire to 'keep up'
    firefly_ris, Zhoen and 5kidsmommy like this.
  15. mom2rose&john

    mom2rose&john DIS Veteran

    Dec 13, 2007
    Unfortunately the Jones' in my group ended up divorced, incredibly in debt and bitter about everything. Thank goodness my husband and I never felt the need to keep up with them.
  16. mi*vida*loca

    mi*vida*loca Collect memories, not things

    Mar 29, 2008
    I book the kind of vacation that works for us. For ME a WDW vacation isn't cooking, packing sandwiches or penny pinching while there. If I couldn't afford the WDW vacation I want, we go somewhere else within our budget that let's us have the type of vacation we like. I don't care what other people are doing. It's about what I prefer.
  17. hoffman1

    hoffman1 DIS Veteran

    Jun 18, 2006
    I don't have any desire to keep up the Jones'.
    What I find I do have a hard time with is keeping up with my prior trips! o_O (when we have had better years and were able to splurge a little more...)
    Going back to the way we started is a little more difficult (stayed at Value resorts, packed sandwiches and granola bars, etc). After we started having a little more expendable income we started staying at the moderate resorts during the heyday of "free dining" (when tip was still included). We started even splurging on that -- paying the difference to get Deluxe dining.
    We stayed just one night in a Deluxe (AKL) on our Sept trip. Now I am wanting to spend a whole week there.
    But we still have more of a moderate budget.
    I could cut the number of nights we stay and days in the parks.
    But I don't really want to. Like I said before, it is hard to go back once you have splurged a bit. LOL
  18. 2Pirates2Princesses

    2Pirates2Princesses DIS Veteran

    Nov 15, 2010
    We feel fortunate just to be able to take five kids back to Disney. This will be our third family trip and while we know people that go frequently (primarily coworkers and our kids' peers), there are many people we know that would love to take their kids to Disney World and haven't been able to make it happen. This will be our second time onsite but we have amazingly fond memories of our offsite trip. I will admit though that I would love to be able to stay at a monorail resort for this upcoming trip since we are planning on three MK days, for the convenience and since we do plan on having some resort downtime. But with needing two rooms and the small fortune that is park tickets for a family of seven it's just not possible.
    Canooknic likes this.
  19. #1hoosierfan

    #1hoosierfan DIS Veteran

    Mar 27, 2010
    No, comparison is the thief of joy.

    I do like the years we budget to fly instead of drive though......
    Last edited: Jan 9, 2017
    MudQueen22, Gr8t Fan, MEM and 3 others like this.
  20. David Brent

    David Brent Mouseketeer

    Jan 28, 2009
    Any trip or vacation for that matter, I always am blessed to have that opportunity with my family.
  21. MomToOne

    MomToOne DIS Veteran

    Mar 18, 2010
    My life deviated from the Jones' about 20 years ago. Haven't looked back. I tend to take a "to each his own" approach this sort of thing - what is important to me personally probably isn't important to the next person, and vice versa.
    Zhoen likes this.

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