So, you want to plan a Disney vacation in Florida in the spring? Well, in the interest of having a memorable trip while saving a few bucks, here are five tips to help you plan your trip.
1. Location, Location, Location
You’ve heard location is everything, and when visiting the Walt Disney Resort in Florida, it is true. The first tip is to save time and money by staying close to the Walt Disney World Theme Parks. I suggest the Downtown Disney area in Lake Buena Vista that has several affordable options for accommodations along Hotel Blvd. Or, at one of the Walt Disney World Resorts.
Benefits of Staying in Downtown Disney
– Closer to the parks.
– Several hotels with affordable rates located along Hotel Blvd.
– Hotels Offer free shuttle services and often breakfast, and other perks.
– Down the block from Downtown Disney that offers dining, movie theaters, showing, and entertainment.
2. Comparing Disney Rates On Travel Sites
I’ll save you some time and say that Expedia and Travelocity are currently about the same rates for a week-long vacation to Walt Disney World in Lake Buena Vista, Florida. Here’s an example of prices for the dates of March 28 – April 4, for a family of two adults, and two children ages 5 and 7. For the hotel, I picked the Holiday Inn Orlando, Lake Buena Vista because it’s a well known brand and usually offers great amenities for guests:
Expedia: $166.00 – $210.00
Travelocity: $166.00 – $210.00
Trivago: $199.00 – $211.00.
Holiday Inn Website: You can save a few bucks on these specific dates by booking directly through the Holiday Inn website. Rates for the above date were $166.00 – $183.00.
Depending on the hotel you book amenities can include free breakfast, activities, and local discounts.
Extra Savings On Disney Vacations For Teachers
The Seven Downtown Disney® Resort Area Hotels are offering special Teacher Appreciation Rates. These rates apply to kindergarten – college teachers and support staff in the U.S. and Canada. And, are available for stays May 1-July 31, and if you stay at these hotels you also receive the “Downtown Disney Deals” booklet that features exclusive discounts and specials from over 30 merchants on Downtown Disney® area dining, entertainment and shopping.
The Downtown Disney® Resort Area Hotels’ “Teacher Appreciation Rates” are:
- Holiday Inn Orlando – Lake Buena Vista – rates from $89 per room, per night, which is actually lower than booking directly through the Holiday Inn website.
- B Resort & Spa – rates from $119 per room, per night.
- Best Western Lake Buena Vista Resort Hotel – rates from $89 per room, per night.
- Buena Vista Palace Hotel & Spa – rates from $79 per room, per night.
- DoubleTree Suites by Hilton – rates from $129 per suite, per night.
- Hilton Orlando Lake Buena Vista – rates from $89 per room, per night.
- Wyndham Lake Buena Vista Resort – rates from $87 per room, per night.
3. Reservation’s At Disney’s Value Resorts
Currently, the Walt Disney Resort’s have a Spring Special so you can save big on your vacation and enjoy the perk’s of staying at a Disney Resort. And, for reservations at Disney’s Value Resorts the prices dropped significantly:
Disney’s Pop Century Resort in the Wide World of Sports Resort Area: $112.00.
Disney’s All-Star Sports Resort, All-Star Music Resort, and All-Star Movies Resort: $120.00 – $121.00.
Disney’s Art of Animation Resort is the newest on with a rate of $350.00.
Benefits Of Staying At A Disney’s Resort
Look for current special for the dates of your trip and often you’ll find a great deal.
Disney’s Resort pick you up from the airport.
Disney guests get into the parks an hour earlier and enjoy other perks.
All purchases within the parks can be delivered directly to your room.
4. Save On Disney Ticket Prices
It’s true, the ticket’s for Disney theme park‘s are high. A one day ticket for the Magic Kingdom is currently $105.00 for ages 10 and over, and 99.00 for ages 3-9. Although, using the example of a vacation from March 28 – April 4, if you purchase tickets for the whole trip the rates drop down to $47.86 for ages 10 and over, and 45.00 for ages 3-9 for the Magic Kingdom. So, the longer you plan to visit the theme parks the more you save on tickets.
The base ticket’s get you into one park per day. With a extra fee you can get a Park Hopper, which we prefer because we can move from park to park throughout our stay. There are also other experiences you can pay for like the water parks Disney’s Typhoon Lagoon and Disney’s Blizzard Beach, and Disney Quest, which is an indoor gaming area.
To figure out which tickets work best for your trip speak directly to a Walt Disney World Resort crew member by calling (407) 939-5277. They can help you choose which is the best pricing on tickets that fits your budget and the various ticket options available for the dates you have in mind.
5. Planning Your Disney Trip
Let’s say you are planning a vacation with two kids ages 5 and 7. Make your Disney experience start early by surprising your kids with the news ahead of time. They’re going to be very excited, so this is the time to set down a few guidelines.
– If your children do choirs and you give them an allowance, consider tossing in a bit more for them to spend on their trip. Remind them what they’re saving for so this way they don’t blow their money on purchasing an App or new game. This is their money to spend so it is a great time to teach them good speeding habits. We did this with our boys, and they learned to be picky about what they really wanted. They could buy a balloon that would last for a couple days or a toy, or a pirate outfit, complete with a sword, which also makes a fun Halloween costume too.
– It’s a family trip – enjoy it as a family: Visit the Walt Disney World Resort website, and let each person pick out something they’d like to do, and then schedule your day around the activity.
– Download the My Disney Experience App for Apple or Android: This is where the advantage for those who have preordered tickets, and for guests staying at Walt Disney World Resorts comes in: You can select your Fast Passes to rides 60 days ahead of time. There are maps, parks information like hours, and activities all accessible from the App along with the ability to reserve dining and more.
– Take Your Time And Enjoy The Moment: The Disney World theme parks can be overwhelming if you try to do everything in one day. Enjoy a few of the activities your family picked out in the morning, then take a break for lunch. The Disney World parks allow you to bring a stroller, totes, or backpacks, which they do check before you enter the parks. Pack the essentials for each day along with some snacks and drinks.
– Dining At Disney: There are plenty of dining options throughout each park. The fast service restaurants are less expensive than the sit down restaurants. To save money pack a lunch, and have a picnic. This gives your family time to sit and chat about what you’ve already experienced, and make plans for the rest of the day. If you want to eat at a restaurant be sure to call ahead and book a reservation or use the My Disney Experience App.
Extra Tip: The Magic Of Disney Is What YOU Make It
Check the maps at each park for activities to enjoy. Kids can sing, dance, and be merry with Disney characters at many locations in the theme parks.
There are some rides that have long lines; especially in the Magic Kingdom at rides like Peter Pan’s Flight®, so be prepared to wait if you haven’t got a Fast Pass. And, if you’re stuck in a line waiting talk about your day, make up a game, or snap a few selfies to share with family. In fact, it’s a great time to make that call to Granma and say how much fun the kids are having!
Disney World is one of my favorite vacation spots. I love it in the spring when they have the Epcot International Flower and Garden Festival.
I enjoy seeing the excitement on children’s faces when they meet their favorite Disney characters, exploring new attractions like the new Seven Dwarfs Mine Train, visiting our favorites like the Haunted Mansion in the Magic Kingdom, and Journey Into Imagination With Figment at Epcot. Most of all, it’s a time when Leroy and I don’t have to work, we can unwind, and just enjoy the magic of each moment together and with our family. That’s what Walt Disney really created; a place where we can rediscover the magic of sharing time together.
Our favorite restaurant is the San Angel Inn Restaurante in Mexico, located in the World Showcase at Epcot. They have a tasty selection of Mexican food, along with refreshing Margarita’s. Cost is about $15 to $29.99 per adult. If you go, there’s a quick services area outside for food selections as well. Just be sure to step inside because it’s great place cool down, they host kids activities, and there’s a boat you can ride on the Gran Fiesta Tour Starring The Three Caballeros through the Pyramid that explores Mexico, which is a fun break for the family. Plus, there are exciting presentations throughout Epcot that include singers, Oriental drummers, acrobats, and many more performances to see.
Downtown Disney has a great Lego Store where kids can build with Lego’s while parents relax. They also have lots of shops to explore, a T-Rex Restaurant, Rainforest cafe, Earl Of Sandwich, a refreshing water sprite area, and entertainment scheduled for children. It is currently going through a massive transformation, and will soon be transformed into Disney Springs. Follow the signs for parking, or if staying at a Downtown Disney hotel just walk. The Disney Resort Hotels do have transportation to Downtown Disney, so take advantage of that and save the frustration of parking; it gets really busy in the evenings!
As a child, Sunday’s evenings were reserved for watching Walt Disney present The Wonderful World of Disney, a family show we could all enjoy. It was also a time when Disneyland in California, which opened in 1955, had coupons, from A to E for tickets. If you’re old enough to remember these you can recall E coupon was a prized ticket. This E Ticket is nothing like the E-tickets we print out today. It was the one ticket that you could use for rides like the Haunted Mansion, Pirates of the Caribbean and Matterhorn Bobsleds. Today, you can hop on all the ride’s at Disneyland and Disney World for one price, all day long!
The Walt Disney programming premiered in October of 1954, and over several years the series aired on all three major television networks, ABC, NBC, and CBS, and eventually ended in 1983.