Here at Magical DIStractions, we give you all sorts of information and tips on planning a Walt Disney World Vacation. You may even feel overwhelmed at the THOUGHT of planning a trip. I get it! My first trip planning experience was confusing, yet exciting. There are just SO many things to consider- how can one narrow it down?! Personally, I believe setting a Disney Budget will help you get started and thus making planning a breeze!
Pick Your Disney Budget
I think this is the best place to start for many people. The budget for your trip is going to be very personal and no family is going to have exactly the same budget and trip. There are so many ways to save and spend money when planning a Walt Disney World Vacation. For many families, settling on a budget before you begin planning will help narrow down your choices. If you have a budget or at least a ball park figure in place, you will be able to decide how best to spend the money for your family trip.
Here are some examples for a family of 4 (2 adults, 2 children) booking a trip December 8 – December 12, 2016 :
- Moderate Vacation Offer 1: Room at a Disney’s Coronado Springs Resort with the Disney Dining Plan
- Value Vacation Offer 2: Room at Disney’s All Star Music Resort with the Disney Quick Service Dining Plan
- Deluxe Vacation Offer 3: Room at Disney’s Beach Club Resort with the Disney Deluxe Dining Plan
These vacations are all quoted for the same dates and the same size family. However, each vacation offer is slightly different and has a different budget. The great thing about a Walt Disney World vacation is that you can tailor your vacation around your budget. You get decide what is the best option for your family.
Pick your Hotel
Once your budget is in place, the next step would be deciding what hotel you will be staying at. With the different levels of resorts, every family will find something that fits their needs.
- Value Resorts– Most affordable, smaller rooms, basic amenities/pools
- Moderate Resorts– Slightly more expensive, medium-sized rooms, some above average amenities, some pool theming
- Deluxe Resorts– Expensive, larger rooms, above average amenities, elaborate pool themes and slides.
- Deluxe Villa Resorts– Expensive, large suite options, high end amenities elaborate pool themes and slides.
I have already shared my love of Value Resorts- you can check out Finding the VALUE in Value Resorts for more on that! However, for some families a nice hotel room is something they do not want to sacrifice. Knowing what type of room and resort that mets the needs for your family is important.
Pick your Tickets
There are so many options when it comes to the Magic Your Way tickets at Walt Disney World. This is again, one of those areas that it will come down to knowing your family! I know many people think that they cannot go without the Park Hopper option, and no matter what they add them to their vacation package. Others plan their trips with one park each day and do not feel the need to hop from one place to another. It’s a very personal choice and depends on your touring style. However you plan to tour the parks, you will need to select the Magic Your Way option that will best fit your budget and plans.
Decide on Dining
This is a tough decision for many families. Disney offers several different Dining Plan options. There is a lot of debate on whether the Dining Plans offered actually save any money or if it’s cheaper for families to just pay out of pocket for the meals that they want. One great tool to decide if you should get one of the Dining Plans is found at Distripplanner.com.
Walt Disney World also helps families save money on dining by allowing guests to bring in coolers and food! This is nearly unheard of in theme parks, so I know many people take advantage of this great rule. Check out this post about Packing Your (Lunch) Bags to learn about bringing your own food into the parks!
So, now you have some things to think about as you plan out your Walt Disney World vacation. If you are still lost- find a Disney Travel Agent! There are some amazing agents out there that can help anyone and any budget plan a magical trip. At no additional cost, the Earmarked Disney agents can help guide you towards your perfect vacation.