Book Through Costco Travel
Booking a Disney vacation through Costco may save you a lot of money, while adding value to your trip. Waived resort fees, resort credits, room upgrades, included meals and free Disney gift cards with a package purchase are a few ways members save big on their vacations.
Plus, if you’re not a Costco member, now is a great time to change that: The warehouse chain is currently offering a $10 gift card to new Gold Star members, and $20 gift cards to new Executive members.
Ask About All Available Discounts
When booking your trip, dont be shy about asking for all applicable discounts. The Walt Disney World Resort offers a variety of discounts for certain groups. For example, military members and their families are offered discounts. Seasonal discounts and deals for annual passholders are also often available. If youre not sure if you qualify for any current promotional discounts, dont be afraid to ask before committing to your trip.
Why To Ever Book A Disney Vacation Package
So why ever book a package through Disney? Disney routinely offers discounts that are only good on package bookings. The biggest example of a package discount is Free Dining. You can only take advantage of Free Dining offers if you buy a vacation package, complete with a room and park tickets, from Disney.
In general, its always going to make sense to compare Disneys vacation package priceseven when they have discount offersto the cost of booking separately. Most of the time, its easy to beat a standard package price by purchasing discounted Disney World tickets and booking your Disney World hotel at the best rate possible.
Furthermore, usually when Disney has a package discount available they have a room-only deal available that offers a similar discount. This means youll often be able to beat a package discount by booking a corresponding room-only discount and purchasing your tickets from a discount ticket broker.
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Should I Hire A Disney World Travel Agent
Well, it depends! The ideal candidate for hiring a Disney travel agent are definitely first-timers. If your family has never been to Disney World, I highly suggest contacting an agent to help you out. Between FastPass+ selections, restaurant reservations, and all of the deals you can find, you will definitely want to let a travel agent take the reins.
If you are planning on going again soon, then I suggest asking your travel agent for some pro tips and insights in order to learn more about booking your next trip yourself!
If your family is busy with all of lifes little quirks, then you may want to hire a travel agent. Planning a trip to Disney can be very time consuming. Its also not something you can sit down at your computer and do all at once. There are multiple days and processes involved in making the most out of your trip to Disney, and for this reason, it might be best for you to hire a travel agent.
If you have been to Disney World multiple times, know the FastPass+ system and all of the best rides, then you probably get a kick out of planning your Disney vacation yourself! You probably wont want to hire an agent, but if you do, its free anyways so you might as well! Its a great way to ensure you are getting a great deal without all of the sweat and tears. You can also let your agent know everyones favorite movies, rides, and characters in order to make sure you hit all of your favorite spots while on your trip!
Resorts And No Parks Days
If you have some free time, or if youre planning a meal at one of Disneys hotels, you may want to set aside some time to explore their resorts. This is particularly a good idea if youre planning a future visit and want to scope out the hotel.
You can easily visit the monorail hotels by riding the monorail between them. You can easily visit the Boardwalk hotels by walking between them, particularly while walking between Epcot and Hollywood Studios.
And if you want a full day of relaxation , you may want to set aside time for a no parks day. This is a day where you dont go to the parks, instead focusing on the other activities your resort and Walt Disney World have to offer.
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Disneys Grand Floridian Resort & Spa
The Grand Floridian is probably the most traditional high-end hotel at Disney World.
You wont find a ton of character themes, but you will find some of the most upscale amenities, including a spa and the fanciest restaurant at Disney. Its one of Disney Worlds most expensive resorts, thanks to its proximity to Magic Kingdom and amenities, with rates often starting at $500 per night or more, even for standard rooms, with rates going above $700 for pretty standard rooms at peak times.
In addition to the monorail stop, there are water taxis that take you across Bay Lake to the park entrance. And, newly added is a walking path to the Magic Kingdom, so you dont need to rely on any transportation at all. In short, getting to and from Magic Kingdom isnt a problem from the Grand Floridian.
Dining is another highlight here. While it hasnt reopened yet, Victoria & Alberts is the finest dining you can find at Disney World. A true five-star experience with a dress code and no kids under 10, guests can choose between the dining room, a private chefs table or Queen Victorias Room for a truly special occasion. With everything from caviar to fine wines, be prepared for a big bill.
1900 Park Fare is also excellent and a bit easier on the budget. The redesigned Enchanted Rose bar on the second level of the Grand Floridians lobby, inspired by Beauty and the Beast, is a upscale place to sip your evening cocktail.
Disneys Port Orleans Resort
This resort sits squarely in the Moderate category and, in fact, has yet to reopen at all after the pandemic closure. Its big and spread out, with more than 3,000 rooms combined across the French Quarter and Riverside areas. The French Quarter theme will remind folks of New Orlean, and fans of The Princess and the Frog will enjoy seeing Tiana in some guest rooms.
These resorts originally opened in the early 1990s, and though theyve been updated since, the rooms are still on the smaller side. Port Orleans has pools on both sides of the resort and youll also find horse-drawn carriages along the river. But neither have the sorts of activities that can keep kids occupied when youre not in the parks. The restaurants here are also focused on quick service.
Some folks love the charm of Port Orleans. But for the price, wed choose a Value resort over this Moderate resort.
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Walt Disney World Basics And Essential Tips
Walt Disney World is a vacation destination outside of Orlando, Florida with four theme parks, two waterparks, numerous hotels, world class dining, and several other offerings .
If youre brand new to Walt Disney World planning, start with our Basic Things To Know About Walt Disney World. Thats a quick read that will get you familiar with Walt Disney World.
Then move on to our Essential Tips for Planning Your First Disney World Vacation. Theres some overlap between that list and this guide, but thats okay, youll just be a little ahead of the curve in the rest of your planning.
Fort Wilderness Cabins And Campsites
There are 409 Fort Wilderness cabins and 788 campsites set in a wooded area of more than 700 acres.
There are many interesting entertainment and recreation options within the Fort Wilderness Campground, including biking, pony rides, hay rides, campfires and more. You also have access to an inexpensive all-you-care-to-eat buffet restaurant and the Hoop-Dee-Doo Revue dinner show. Fort Wilderness also has a marina where you can rent various types of boats.
Another major advantage of Fort Wilderness is the boat transportation to the Magic Kingdom, which is a lot more fun than taking a bus. If you want to eat at the Contemporary Resort or Wilderness Lodge, you can take a boat directly to those resorts. To visit the Polynesian or the Grand Floridian, you can take a boat to the Magic Kingdom or Contemporary and then take the Monorail to the resorts.
Campsites are designated as Partial Hookup , Full Hookup , Preferred , and Premium . Each site has a picnic table and charcoal grill. Most sites feel fairly secluded because there are stands of trees and bushes between sites. Max occupancy for all sites is 10.
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How Much To Budget For Walt Disney World
Heres are three numbers: $3,927,$5,731, and $8,468 Those are the numbers from our in-depth post on How Much Does A Disney World Vacation Cost? for a budget, standard, and expensive Disney World trip for a family of four in 2022. The 2023 figures will probably be about 3-5% higher. Those prices include flights, park tickets, dining, transportation between MCO and Disney World, and hotel stay.
Use Hilton Honors Or Marriott Bonvoy Points
Redeem your Hilton Honors and Marriott Bonvoy points to save big on your vacation, or earn the points while staying at an official Walt Disney World hotel. Hilton Orlando Buena Vista Disney Springs Area and Signia by Hilton Orlando Bonnet Creek are part of the Hilton family, while the Walt Disney World Dolphin and Walt Disney World Swan fall under the Marriott Bonvoy umbrella.
Disney Resort Hotel Vacation Package Details
The Disney Resort Hotel Vacation Package is the most affordable Walt Disney World starter vacation package. There is no minimum stay requirement.
For 2021, the basic Disney Resort Hotel package includes:
Everyone in the room must be booked on the same package and ticket options. Package and package components are nontransferable. Theme Park tickets and options must be used within 14 days of first use. Some activities and events are priced separately. Visiting more than one Theme Park on the same day requires the Park Hopper option.
Thanks to Small World Vacations for info.
More Info & Links
How Much Does It Cost To Stay At A Disney Hotel
When deciding to go on a Disney World vacation, the first thing you will probably ask yourself is, How much does it cost to stay at a Disney hotel?
That answer can vary significantly. There are dozens of Disney-owned hotels on Walt Disney World Resort property, and they can range in price from around $100 per night to upwards of $600 per night, depending on where you choose to stay. If you are planning a trip on a budget and you want to spend the least amount possible, chances are you will be staying somewhere between the $100-200 price range.
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See What Disney Is Charging
You’ll need a baseline in conducting your search, and Disney itself is the place to start. Visit the Walt Disney World website and see how much Disney is charging for your selected dates. Remember, Disney hotel rates vary by date and change as availability comes and goes, so your specific dates are important.
Additionallyand this is very importantyou need to make sure you click into specific hotels to be sure youre seeing the best prices. The Disney World website does not always show the lowest prices for individual hotels on its search results page.
If youre looking during a deal period , Disney often shows you a featured rate first, which might not be the lowest rate at the hotel. You might click through and see a lower offer rateyou might even click through and see that a non-offer rate for a different room is lower than the offer rate they first showed.
Disney doesn’t tell you the total with tax until you actually add the stay to your cart . Add to you cart, and then select “No Ticket” at the add-on screen. That amount is the actual total for your stay, with tax.
Planning Your Disney World Vacation
I highly recommend that you put in some time to plan out your days at the parks. Some basic planning will save you a lot of time, avoid unnecessary long lines, and will make your Disney World vacation much more enjoyable.
Basic planning involves deciding where to go on which days, which Fastpasses you will select, and where you will eat. If you want to eat at any of their sit-down restaurants, take note these require reservations.
To more easily plan out your days, check out this super detailed guide to using a Disney World Crown calendar to plan your park days smartly and avoid the crowds.
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Discount Disney World Tickets
As we discuss in greater detail in our post on discount Disney World tickets , we recommend purchasing through Undercover Tourist or Get Away Today. Youll want to look into other discount options, if you have access to them, as well.
Wherever you buy your discount tickets, youll be able to link them to your My Disney Experience account . This is a must-do for a few reasons, but basically any technical troubles you run into are going to be much easier to resolve if you have an MDE account.
A Disney Travel Planners Depth Of Knowledge
This one is especially important if you are going to Disney World for the first or second time.
Since Disney is a massive theme park filled will all sorts of parks, attractions, resorts, restaurants, entertainment, and transportation options then you really need someone who can help you plan and navigate through every step of your trip. Of course, your input is the most important. But their help and guidance will prove invaluable if you dont already know the ropes.
As amazing as Disney World is, it fast becomes less amazing when you realize dont know where you are going, And your experience suffers when you encounter crowded attractions, cant get a table at popular restaurants, or have booked a vacation package that isnt just right for you.
Guidebooks and online blogs can be helpful, but you really need to talk with someone who has first-hand knowledge of all aspects of the park. A Disney Travel Agent can help you navigate through all of these unknowns and craft a vacation package thats right for you.
Not all Disney travel planners are created equal. Thus, it is important to find a dedicated Disney travel planner whom you can trust for the correct information and guidance.
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Book Directly With Disney
Pros: Generally the most flexible with regard to changes, the largest selection of room categories and resorts, has the option to book both Room-Only and Vacation PackagesCons: Discounts arent always automatically added and sometimes the same room can be booked by another method at a lower price
One of the most common ways to book a Disney World trip is by booking it directly with Disney.
In general, booking directly with Disney will give you the most flexibility and security, however, it may not be the cheapest.
Disney often has discounts available, but if youre booking directly with them, they arent automatically applied.
Instead, youll need to confirm that the correct Special Offer button is toggled ON and that youre logged in so that you can see all available discounts:
Also, if multiple discounts are available dont forget to try them to ensure youre getting the best deal for your trip.
What about after youve already booked?
If a discount comes out after youve booked, you may still be able to apply it. However, this isnt automatic either.
Instead, youll need to modify your existing reservation to add the new discount .
This isnt difficult to do but applying discounts can be extremely time sensitive since there are often limited numbers of rooms eligible to be discounted.
Make sure you review our post on How to Apply A Discount for step-by-step instructions on how it works.
Best Way To Book Disney Vacation What Website
We are trying to book our Disney Vacation in May and have decided to stay in the resort. We are still trying to decide on the resort but would like it close to MK.
Were also interested in purchasing the meal plan but not sure how to go about that? Is that something you purchase through the hotel separately or through the Disney World site?
Im completely lost as I prices the vacation through Travelocity but the meal plan was not an option.
Where can I get the best discounted rate for my trip and also purchase the meal plan?
Thank you in advance!!
A Disney Holiday is a bit different than just booking a hotel, I don’t Recomend using any travel sites such as Expedia, Travelocity, or the like They are not Disney Specialists and you will be booking their deal, not a Disney Deal
The current room discounts are released by Disney, they are good for stays up until June 14th
For the Dining plan, you must book a Resort and Tickets, a Package, that will require a $200 deposit, balance due 45 days prior to arrival. You can change or Modify just about anything prior to the 45 days, without a fee
As far as Resorts go, my top picks would be
In my strong opinion, using Travelocity or another such site would be a big mistake.
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