Disney World Trip Planning

How to Afford a Deluxe Disney World Vacation

If you want to stay in a deluxe resort at Disney World, yet the price raises your blood pressure, fear not, I have put together a plan to make it possible. Be sure to follow these steps.

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#1 Get a Disney Visa Card

If you are serious about saving for a deluxe Disney World vacation, the Disney Visa card is a useful tool.  When you are a card member, you get notified ahead of time about major discounts on resorts and potentially free dining plans. Also, using the card at some Disney stores and restaurants also gets you a 10% discount. There are many other perks with the Visa as well, though I am focusing on the ones that make your trip more affordable.

In addition, every purchase you make with a Disney Visa card earns you 1% back in reward dollars (2% if you get the Premier card with a $49 annual fee). These reward dollars can be used for anything Disney related. Granted, there are other credit cards that give you similar or better cash back, yet this is a good way to make sure you are saving up for your trip.

Be sure that you never charge more on the credit card than you can pay off in that billing cycle, otherwise all of the benefits are moot.

#2 Hunt for the Major Deals

The ideal scenario is to get either 30% off on your resort or a free dining plan. Sometimes you have to settle for 20% off or less on the resort, but this is the key place to save money. You won’t be able to go during a peak time if you want one of these deals, so you’ll have to be somewhat flexible about when you can go.

#3 Pay Yourself First

Even with all of the discounts and tricks, you will still need to spend a significant amount of money for a deluxe Disney World vacation. There is no way around that. If you want to save up for this, the most powerful strategy is to set aside a predetermined chunk of each paycheck right away, before you spend any of it. It may seem silly, but we as humans will always spend money that is available. Putting away the money you want to save first, and spending what is left over, is the only way to combat that. We as people also tend to overestimate the amount of money we can comfortably and happily live on. Please don’t be offended by this if you feel you have nothing extra to save. I am just describing a proven wisdom that has had a powerful effect on me and many others.

#4 Use a Food Strategy

If you don’t get a free dining plan, consider paying out of pocket. While it can be a great experience to have a dining plan and not worry about managing the costs during the vacation, this is a place where you can save. A strategy that I have implemented with success is using Amazon Now to order snacks and quick meals to my room. This saves considerable money and you can still have one nice Disney meal per day.

#5 Ask for Disney Gift Cards

When people ask you for gift ideas, you can always suggest Disney gift cards. They can be used toward your Disney World trip and it is fun for other people to know they are contributing toward your vacation.

Above all, you will need to decide that it is worth the extra money to stay at a deluxe resort. For some people, it is not. They are only into the park experience and couldn’t care less about where they stay. For those of us that find the deluxe Disney World Resorts to be a magical experience that is money well spent, these strategies are very useful.

Photo Credit:
Jared Lee
source (license)


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