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First time to Dsiney on a small budget

St. John's, Canada
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First time to Dsiney on a small budget

We are finally taking our family to Disney but we are on a tight budget. I have a 2 and an 8 year old, worried that the 2 year old will not be able to keep up with the 8 year old. Should we stay on Disney or rent a car and condo? How many days do we need to see Magic Kingdom and how many of the parks do you recommend seeing on our first visit? It is very overwhelming trying to book everything for our first time. Appreciate any advice you can give.

Massachusetts
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457 posts
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1. Re: First time to Dsiney on a small budget

Personally I think staying on Disney property is the best. Transportation to the parks is included and you could probably do well with a moderate resort or even value resort if you are on a limited buget. They all pretty much offer the same amenities but obviously you will get a little more from a moderate. As far as parks go difinately do Magic Kingdom and Animal Kingdom. My daughter is seven and those are her absolute favorites and have been since the first time she went when she was five. Hope this helps. I hope you and your family will hava a great time.

Pittsburgh
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2. Re: First time to Dsiney on a small budget

I agree with the prior poster - stay at Disney, as you get free transportation to and from the airport and to and from the parks. You also get extra magic hours in the parks, which are hours where non-Disney resort guests can't be in the parks. They have three grades os hotel: value, moderate, and deluxe. Right now, you are lucking out as a Canadian, as Canadians (but not US residents) can get savings on value and moderate Disney resorts (see post 1 on this thread):

tripadvisor.com/ShowTopic-g34515-i19-k436579…

As far as parks, I think you also want to do Hollywood Studios in addition to Animal Kingdom and Magic Kingdom.

Maryland, USA
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3. Re: First time to Dsiney on a small budget

Try to get free dining too! Stay at the resort includes tickets, transport from the airport.

Pack dry cereal, paper bowls, and plastic spoons. Get milk there eat breakfast in your room. Be sure you have a fridge. Get refillable mugs for drinks. Take simple snacks apples, chips in with you. Whatever your kids like. Share meals some are huge.

Pleasant View...
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4. Re: First time to Dsiney on a small budget

Do you want to stay in one room or would you be happier with the privacy a condo affords? I think staying onsite Disney would save you quite a bit of money in the long run, since you wouldn't have to rent a car. The value resorts, of course, are the least expensive option at Disney, but you'd have to pay $10 per day for a small refrigerator in your room, whereas the moderate and deluxe resorts automatically include the fridge.

Bring your own stroller. Renting strollers can be quite an expense.

One of the biggest temptations at any park is the vast assortment of merchandise available, especially for children. Set your budget NOW on what you'll spend for yourself and children. Maybe tell your 8-year old to save his money (if he gets allowance or whatever.)

Don't buy park hopper tickets. If this is your first time, you'll want to spend at least a full day at each park, so there's no use paying for a hopper pass, which allows you to go from park to park on any given day. Sticking with base tickets will save you money. Your 2-year old will get in free.

Don't plan on doing a park every day. Leave some days for lazing around the pool, or maybe just riding the monorail or one of the many boats (all free.)

Buy cheap plastic ponchos and/or umbrellas at a discount store before you leave home, in case of rain.

Pack sweaters or light jackets just in case of cool evenings and restaurants. If you're going during the late fall or winter months, you'll want to watch the weather report carefully in the days before you leave - you may have to pack shorts and t shirts AND coats and mittens!

Maryland, USA
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5. Re: First time to Dsiney on a small budget

I really like Ethel's ideas. Another thing, at the shows they sell those light up spinning toys and big sodas full of light up ice cubes. They're so expensive. If you have something like that bring it and give it to your child when they start having a fit for one. Bring their favorite thing to drink to the night shows and parades so they won't want to buy that pricey drink.

We always forget and drop 30 bucks.

pa
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6. Re: First time to Dsiney on a small budget

When are you planning to travel ?

St. Catharines...
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7. Re: First time to Dsiney on a small budget

Hello to a fellow St. John's-ian! (Is that what we're called? I'm new here...)

Everything that's been mentione is great advice. I too recommend staying on-World. With a small budget, a Value resort would be great, imo, especially with kids those ages.

If you don't mind having a travel agent in charge of the booking, I'd suggest going through CAA on Kelsey Dr. Ask for Marlene, she has a profound love of Disney, and she'll make sure you're getting the best deal for your family. If any new discounts come along, they can change your booking too, to get the better discount.

Destination Expert
for Orlando, Walt Disney World
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8. Re: First time to Dsiney on a small budget

I will swim againist the tide here-I think you should stay outside of disney. the Value resort rooms are 210 square feet,small by any standard. And no kitchen facilities at all.If you want to stay nearby, the hotels at Downtown Disney offer a great value-check www.mousesavers .com for good rates on the Doubletree.The Holiday inn DTD is also great for families.It takes maybe 2-3 days for the MK,we like the AK very much with little ones. You don't pay admission for the 2 year old so that's a savings. We have found it difficult without a car but it is possible if you stay in the LBV or DTD area. There are supermarkets you can reach using Disney transportation. Pack snacks and beverages every day,you can split meals at the restaurants-they portions are huge at Disney. You can buy a lot of Disney trinkets online and have them ready for your kids-the prices at the Disney stores can be staggering. Save your money for treats like an ice cream or a character meal if you can swing it

Spennymoor, United...
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9. Re: First time to Dsiney on a small budget

We will be visiting Orlando next summer for the first time, for 3 weeks and had planned on staying in the LBV area. However, a couple of postings on this topic have made us consider a Disney hotel if the price is right, as our 2 daughters will be 10 and 4, we will be spending most of our time at Disney, except for perhaps 3 or 4 days at Seaworld and Aquatica. We can get free dining if booking a moderate Disney hotel with Virgin Holidays.

Kisswells - mentions, you get free tickets if staying at the parks.

ethelmaepotte - mentions, 'theres no use paying for a hopper pass' and 'base tickets will save you money'.

We thought that you had to buy all tickets even if staying in Disney hotels and that all types of tickets were of the hopper pass type. Any further information would be greatly appreciated.

Valley Stream, NY
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10. Re: First time to Dsiney on a small budget

You do not get free tickets to the parks by staying in a Disney Hotel, you still have to buy your tickets to the parks. You also have to pay extra for them to be hoppers.

When you get free dining you pay full price for hotel, it's one discount or the other (for us here anyway).