When Is A Park Hopper Not Worth The Money
You may not want to actually park hop, however. Why? Because it takes time to move from one park to another. It is easy to hop from EPCOT to Hollywood Studios because they are located right next to one another. But it takes much longer to hop from the Magic Kingdom to Animal Kingdom. A trip on board thefree Disney transportation can take 45 minutes or longer. Thats 45 minutes less time youll have in the parks.
Many people plan to use their hoppers to go to a water park to cool off after a hot day in the parks. As of early April 2021, Blizzard Beach is open but Typhoon Lagoon remains closed.
New Prices For Disney World Tickets
Disney World has announced an increase in certain theme park ticket prices for 2020. Now, it costs more money than ever before to add the Park Hopper option to your ticket . The price also increased for adding on the Park Hopper Plus option . Disney World also introduced a new type of ticket add-on: the Water Park and Sports ticket add-on, which also comes at a price.
Here are the prices you need to keep in mind for Walt Disney World tickets in 2020:
- Park Hopper add-ons now cost an additional $65 per ticket for 1-day tickets, $75 per ticket for 2 to 3-day tickets, and $85 per ticket for 4 to 10-day tickets.
- Park Hopper Plus add-ons now cost and additional $85 per ticket for 1-day tickets, $95 per ticket for 2 to 3-day tickets, and $105 per ticket for 4 to 10-day tickets.
- The newly introduced Water Park and Sports add-ons now cost an additional $70 per ticket.
How Much To Save For Disney Is Different For Everyone
The amount you’ll need to stash away for a Disney vacation comes down to what kind of trip you want to have.
Keep in mind:
Spending more money doesn’t necessarily mean more fun. Someone who books a lower budget Disney trip can still enjoy themselves as much as someone who breaks the bank.
And speaking of banks, consider where you’ll keep your Disney vacation savings.
Tucking it away in a high-yield savings account is a great way to keep your money safe and watch it grow. Just watch out for banking fees, which could eat into your interest earned. Our list of Best Savings Account Rates is a good place to start, found here.
Consider going with an online bank for your Disney savings account. Online banks tend to offer the highest rates, with the fewest fees.
And, that adds up to more money you’ll have to spend on your Walt Disney World getaway.
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How To Save Money On Your Disney World Trip
I do have an in-depth money-saving guide but to sum things up, here are some easy, surefire ways to help make your WDW trip more affordable.
1. Go offseason
I recommend you take a look at this crowd calendar to see just how busy and expensive Disney World during the time youre looking to plan your visit.
Generally during Thanksgiving, Christmas, New Years, Easter, Spring Break, and the summer, you can expect to pay premium prices for resorts and airfare.
I also forgot to mention to avoid planning your trip during marathon weekends since these days are usually packed and room rates tend to increase.
Thats why I recommend going to Disney during the off-season which is after New Years all the way to March as well as from October to Thanksgiving.
Parks are usually dead and prices are the lowest, at least from personal experiences.
2. Go as a couple instead of a whole family.
As crazy as it sounds, you dont always have to bring your kids or all your kids to Disney World.
Disney World is just as fun for adults as it is kids.
Plus, the way I see if is that if half your family hates Disney and other half loves it, why not just take a father -son/daughter or mother-son/daughter trip.
3. Look at neighboring airports
If youre renting a car, it might actually be cheaper to fly into Tampa or Jacksonville, or even Miami.
This isnt always the case, but it doesnt hurt to expand your airfare search to include neighboring airports.
4. Stay off-property
5. Use credit card points
How Much Will Food Cost At Disney World
Eating is a huge part of every vacation. At Disney World, food isnt exactly cheap but you can make it work to fit your budget. Guests can either pay-as-they-go or choose a Disney Dining Plan.
Which makes more sense depends on your appetite, priorities, and how much you are willing to spend.
If you are a light eater or wish to bring your own food , then you may just want to go it alone without a Disney Dining Plance. However, most guests do in fact opt for one of the four dining plans.
Every single Disney Dining Plan now comes with the option that includes non-alcoholic specialty beverages . One beer, wine, or cocktail comes with each meal. This is very welcome news to many adults and not as exciting to others.
There are currently 4 different tiers of Disney Dining Plans. In 2020, the Disney Dining Plan cost from $55 $119 per adult, per day, and $26 -$47.50 per child, per day.
Below we detail how much each Disney Dining Plan costs and what they offer.
Quick Service Disney Dining Plan
This is the lowest tier of Disney Dining Plans. QSDDP is usually included with the Free Dining promotion at the Disney Value and Moderate Resorts.
Each person on the room reservation is eligible to receive:
- two counter-service meals
- two snacks
- a refillable drink mug
The cost of the Quick Service Plan is $55 per adult, $26 per child ages 3-9
Standard Disney Dining Plan
This plan is usually included with Free Dining at the Disney Deluxe and Deluxe Villa Resorts.
Disney Dining Plan Plus
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How Many Days To Spend At Disney Worlds Animal Kingdom
This has been a highly debated topic in the Disney community, since there are avid goers who swear that Animal Kingdom is a full day park. If you love animals, there are walking trails that feature most of the animals kept at the park. There are also shows, festivals, and now Disneys KiteTails 50th Anniversary Celebration show. Some guests spend hours waiting in line for Avatar : Flight of Passage, which can take a huge chunk of the day.
Animal Kingdom also has some of the best dining in all four theme parks, and are worth using a portion of your day to grab a reservation at restaurants like Yak and Yeti, Tusker House or Tiffins. We dont think youll need more than one day at this park, but it will definitely be a packed day if you explore it from top to bottom.
Is A Park Hopper Ticket Worth The Cost
As of this articles publishing, park hopping has returned to Walt Disney World. However, it is not the same as it was pre-Covid. Due to the capacity limitations, all theme park visitors must reserve their spot to visit a park through the Disney Park Pass System. Visitors with a valid theme park ticket with park hopper option as well as an initial park reservation will be allowed to hop to any other park after 2pm.
If youre buying a multi-day pass , you have to pay for the hopping for the entire ticket, even if you only plan to hop on a day or two.
This can really add up if youre traveling with your family. Plus the time you take traveling from one park to another is less time spent actually enjoying a park!
TravelingMom has even more in depth details on whether a park hopper is worth the money.
Youll have to decide if the additional cost is prohibitive, especially considering park hopping is only available after 2pm. Are you willing to pay anything to ride on three different coasters in one day then head to EPCOT for a three-course meal at Le Cellier? Then park hopping might be right for you!
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How Long To Stay At Disney World
Four full days is our minimum for a trip to Disney as it allows us to have a day in each of the main parks.
If you are visiting Disney as part of a longer trip around Florida, you could choose just one or two parks to visit, but they all are very different. Its impossible for us to pick and doing more than one park in a day would be exhausting.
So even if you are planning a trip to Disney World on a budget, try to allow four full days if you can.
Six or seven full days would be even better as it allows you to revisit some of the parks, have a rest day, or visit the two water parks.
On our last trip, we stayed for six nights with five full park days and wished wed had an extra day for a rest/water park day in the middle.
On our previous trip where we stayed off-site in a cheap motel we had 10 nightssix days in the main parks plus two days in the Disney water parks and one day at Disney Springs and Disneys Winter Summerland mini-golf.
That was a bit much for me, but Simon the Disney fanatic loved it.
You might also want to allow a day or two to visit Universal Studios which is home to the wonderful Wizarding World of Harry Potter .
Pop Century Resort Review
Pop Centurys restaurant is the Everything Pop! cafeteria. If youve ever stayed at a value resort or read any of our reviews, you know the food courts offer a standard lineuppizzas, burgers, salads, pastas, sandwiches . You can also Mobile Order from the food court, and we had a positive experience using that feature.
Note: During the 2020-2021 reopening of the resort all ordering must be mobile order, and youll pick up your meal from a table in the food court.
We love the food court, and getting a full pizza can be a particularly great bargain. If youre not feeling the Everything Pop! cafeteria, consider making the 10 minute walk to Art of Animations Landscape of Flavors. Weve done this, and generally find the different options to be a good way to mix things up.
As weve written nonstop, we love that the value resorts have reasonably-priced food courts that are open late. The deluxe resorts often have only minimal, way overpriced quick service options.
Pop Century has a pool barPetals. Its not unlike the other pool bars, with an okay selection of beer and liquor, along with some mixed frozen drinks, like the Pina Colava. Like all the value hotel bars, youll mostly see a small cross section of your own guests passing through, with the occasional guest on the Skyliner bar crawl popping in.
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Possible Disney World Transportation Costs To Include: Road Trip Expenses Plane Tickets And/or Train Tickets
- If driving down to Walt Disney World, check out GasBuddy.com to help compute road trip costs. Dont forget things like overnight lodging for on the road , gas, and food & snacks.
- If flying, check to help you budget.
- If flying and staying offsite, be sure to factor in rental car or car service costs plus the cost for parking at the theme parks.
- If flying and staying onsite, check out your options for getting from the airport to your resort. And, keep in mind that the Disney World resorts now charge for overnight parking, so youll want to make sure to include that in your budget if you plan to rent a car.
Increased Cost For Several Character Dining Restaurants
2020 also brings new prices for a select number of Character Dining locations throughout Disney World. Character Dining allows guests to enjoy their Disney meals while being greeted by their favorite characters. Its a great option for those who dont want to wait in line to meet Disney characters, but these meals also tend to be more expensive than others on property. You can read all about our favorite Character Dining restaurants here we break down all the locations that are actually worth the money!
Below is a list of the character dining meals that have increased in price by $1 per adult and around $3-4 per child. The increased prices probably wont affect your decision to eat there if youre on the Disney Dining Plan. But if youre paying out of pocket, that extra money could have gotten you a snack or a drink on your Disney vacation.
- The Crystal Palace at Magic Kingdom
- Garden Grill at Epcot
- Akershus Royal Banquet Hall at Epcot
- Hollywood & Vine at Disneys Hollywood Studios
- Tusker House at Disneys Animal Kingdom
- Cape May Cafe at Disneys Beach Club Resort
- Bon Voyage Adventure Breakfast at Trattoria al Forno at Disneys BoardWalk Inn
- Chef Mickeys at Disneys Contemporary Resort
- 1900 Park Fare at Disneys Grand Floridian Resort& Spa
- Ohana at Disneys Polynesian Village Resort
- Storybook Dining at Artists Point at Disneys Wilderness Lodge
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Food Costs Include Table Service & Quick Service Meals Snacks And Any Groceries You Buy For Your Stay
- Food is an easy area to spend big or save a lot.
- Breakfasts in your room is an easy way to save time and a lot of money.
- Kids under 3 can eat free.
- You can pick up items to take to your resort or have grocery items delivered to your resort.
- Ice water is free at most Quick Service locations and makes a great alternative to buying bottles of water.
- There are lots of different ways to budget for food, so check out our food budget guide to see which method will work best for your trip.
Learning About Genie+ And Lightning Lanes
Lightning Lanes are Disneys new skip the line system for Walt Disney World rides, having replaced the old FastPass+ system.
At each park, most or all of the rides have Lightning Lanes, and they can be broken into two groups. Most of the Lightning Lanes are included in Genie+. Guests who pay for Genie+ will be able to select one Lightning Lane slot at a time, and theyll visit these throughout the day.
Each park also has two individual Lightning Lanes. These individual Lightning Lanes are not a part of Genie+. To access these, guests buy specific timeslots for these rides.
Were building out are Genie+ and Lightning Lane content, and it can be found at:
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How Much Does A Disney World Vacation Cost
This is obviously an important question parents need to know when they are considering taking their family on a Disney World Vacation. How do you know if a Disney World vacation is affordable?
This is a very tricky question to answer. It’s not because we’re trying to be shady or elusive. It’s because there are SO MANY variables that all effect the ultimate price that you will pay for a Disney World trip. Variables like time of travel, number of people traveling, ages of your children, transportation costs, length of stay and level of hotel amenities will all effect the final price you pay.
The good news is that Disney World Vacation is definitely not a “one size fits all” vacation. It’s actually mind boggling the amount of vacation choices that are available. A Disney World vacation can be tailor made to custom fit the exact needs of your family and budget.
If there is any bad news to a Disney World Vacation, it is that by comparison, you can expect to pay more for this type of a family vacation compared to say a cruise or typical resort stay. The reason for this, as you will see, is the cost of your park admission tickets. At Disney World, park tickets are expensive but you need to consider the amount of entertainment and fun your family will be enjoying for this additional expense. There really is NO place like Disney when it comes to family fun and memories!
For the purpose of this discussion, Let’s use the example of a family of 4 – 2 adults with 2 kids ages 9 & 7….
Read Understanding Disney World Bus Transportation: A Cheapskate Princess Guide
You will catch the same tram everyone else rides on at all the parks, and youll be the first stop on the way to your car at the end of the day. This might save 3-5 minutes of riding at the end of the day. If you want to skip the tram and walk straight to the parks, this is still more walking youll have add to your total days walk. Is this worth $25? It might be if you are traveling with elderly friends and family, or pushing a big stroller, maybe
The current trend in Disney vacationing is to pay for upgrades and extras, including extra time in the parks, special parties and t-shirts. Closer parking may one day be on your list of Disney World extravagances.
Our overall thought is a no on the parking upgrade fee. If you paid for it and love it, let us know in the comments.
If you do a lot of walking in the heat of the day, you certainly may need this information:
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