How to have a FUN and Frugal Family Vacation to Walt Disney World

Walt Disney World in Orlando is one of the most kid-friendly travel destinations. They have  Magic Kingdom, Epcot Center, Animal Kingdom, Disney-MGM, Blizzard Beach, Typhoon Lagoon, Mini Golf, breakfast with Mickey and Other Disney characters, wonderful kid-friendly restaurants, and SO much more! You and your kids are sure to stay busy!

If you have decided to go to Walt Disney World, the first thing to do is to go online to the official Walt Disney World site at: >> <<

Here, you can choose your hotel, accommodations, and number of nights. In addition, Walt Disney World offers a DVD with a free vacation planning guide for you to view before you book your trip.

You also have the option of forgetting the theme parks all together and booking a Walt Disney Cruise!!

Touted for being a fun-filled cruise complete with Disney characters, this is one vacation you will thoroughly enjoy. After all of the sightseeing and running around at Disney World, you will be pampered by the crew; as well as dining and dancing under the stars. The kids will love it too, especially with all of the activities the cruise line has planned for them.

When to Book Your Vacation

It is advisable to book your trip up to six months in advance. The reason for this is that you can derive the best accommodations, best airline prices and cruise rates, and lock into them early. If you choose to book your vacation online, read the terms and conditions for cancellation, and any fees incurred.

When is the Best Time to go to Walt Disney World

As a Florida girl and frequent Walt Disney World visitor, I can tell you that the best time to go so there will be less lines and you will not fry from the heat are the following months; October, Late January though the end of February, May, and June.

In addition, Tuesdays and Wednesdays are the best time to obtain cheaper air flights. Also, try to book non-stop flights. While their may be a reduction for connecting flights, consider you have small children and it may not be feasible to have to take them off the plane, wait, and then board another.

Check with Walt Disney World either online or via telephone to determine if there are any discounts offered, and when.

Note: Every Wednesday, the airlines post their new rates. This is the time to call and inquire with them or with your travel agent. In addition, it is advisable to purchase trip cancellation insurance just in case.

Things to Do

The list of things to do at Walt Disney World is endless. You can search Walt Disney World’s official website on things to do and see on your vacation.

Note: Reservations for Cinderella’s castle is mandatory. For reservations up to 30 days in advance, call 407-939-3463. For reservations with the Disney characters, you can call the same number up to 90 days in advance.

Another idea which most families find affordable and convenient is to book a suite with kitchen facilities. You can stop by a nearby grocery store and pick up a few things, and prepare breakfast, lunch, and/or dinner in your room.

This will give you the opportunity to have funds for a character meal. The kids can interact with Disney characters, and although a bit expensive, is well worth the experience. Or, even eat at the very kid-friendly and fun Rainforest Cafe located in Walt Disney’s Animal Kingdom (my favorite park!).

Speaking of Animal Kingdom, this is definitely worth seeing. You will see beautiful scenery and some of the most beautiful animals in the world.

Whether this is your first or tenth visit to Walt Disney World, undoubtedly you have not seen it all. Use the online resources mentioned herein to help you in planning each day’s event. Don’t forget Epcot Center! It is a must see, and the kids will love it! Also, don’t forget to take them on the “It’s a Small World” ride! I must warn you though, you may never get that song out of your head afterwards! LOL!

Note: Ensure you bring bottles of water or juice each day, as well as snacks for the kids. You will be walking a great deal and if it’s hot, you want to avoid dehydration. Stop every once in a while (if you can pull your kids away from the next attraction), and sit for a few minutes. Check with the park employees if you need strollers for the kids, which they provide.

I HIGHLY recommend that you use sunscreen on you AND your kids…even if it is cloudy! Trust me, you do not want to spoil your vacation with a painful sunburn!

What to Pack for a Walt Disney World Trip

Since it will probably be quite warm, or even hot when you arrive here in Orlando, be sure that you pack light clothing and hats for the kids, and comfortable walking shoes. Bring sweaters or jackets for nighttime (depending upon the season). Make sure you bring enough underwear for the kids; bathing suits for all; and anything else the family may require.

Try to keep it down to two suitcases with wheels if you can; one for the kids and one for you and your hubby. This will make it easy on you, especially if you have to carry of the kids at some point.

Here are additional items you will need:


Airlines tickets, accommodation vouchers and theme park tickets




Identification with photo

Sunscreen (spf 30)


Discount cards, if any

Traveler’s Checks

Credit Card


An extra bag for souvenirs

EXTREMELY comfortable shoes! No heels ladies, TRUST me!

Since there are many restrictions at the airports being enforced now, be sure to check with your airline to be sure of all the rules and regulations on what you can take on board the flight and what you can’t. As you know, you will probably be asked to put all containers and personal items into a plastic bag and have it available for inspection. Since you cannot bring any food with you, once you arrive you can purchase water and snacks for the family.

Make sure that if you are taking travelers checks, you write down the numbers and place them where you can retrieve them easily if they become lost. Also give a copy of your itinerary to a family member or friend. Photo identification for your entire family is necessary. You can have photo ID pictures taken at a mall, of if you have passports, they will suffice. Make a copy of every piece of identification in your wallet and keep the copies home. This will aid you in case your wallet or purse is stolen.

If you have made reservations to any of the restaurants, bring along the name of the person you spoke to and confirmation number, if given.

Once your book your vacation, the Disney staff can send you information and where you will be able to check on each theme park; hours of operation, parades, fireworks displays, Walt Disney World special
events, daily show times,  backstage tours, rides, kids event, rainy day activities, strollers, tours, Disney dining for kids, tips on touring Epcot and Much More!

The more you know, the more enjoyable your trip will be. Once more, you too, will become a child again, and the twinkle in your eye will be akin to the star you’ve made your wish on.

Frugal Tips:

  • To have the most fun for your buck, do not buy extra batteries, film, sunscreen, and items that can be bought at the local grocery store from Walt Disney World. Stop by one of the local stores instead. You will save a TON of money!
  • When you buy a drink at Walt Disney, buy a souvenir cup. The refills are $2 or less. It’s worth the extra few bucks in the long run.
  • Try and have a couple simple meals you can make in your room; sandwiches, assorted fruits, simple things. You can also pack some snacks to eat while waiting in line. It will give you the extra money you need so you can splurge at a special restaurant…like one in Epcot’s World Showcase.

You don’t have to break the bank to have a wonderful vacation. Take the time to plan. You will allow yourself to have more money for the things that really matter.

Have a fantastic Joy-Filled Vacation!

Leave a Comment