Mom And Kids Mickey Ice Cream Bar
  • On Jan 4, 2011
    Leslie from NC Asked

    Hi Amanda: I am a Senior in college planning a trip to WDW with my 3 roommates for our final spring break together. Since we're "poor college kids", what's the best way to save $ when it comes to the vacation packages? Thanks!

    Hi Leslie! What an awesome Spring Break you are planning! I wish I'd thought of going to Disney World with my friends when I was in college -- you're going to have a ball! First, you need to decide if you'll get a better deal booking a vacation package or booking the parts of your trip separately. I often do not choose a vacation package because I try to shop around and find the best price for the hotel room and the park tickets. I usually find discounted resort rooms by checking the Special Offers page of the Disney website or an unofficial discount site like www.mousesavers.com, and I like to compare the cost of purchasing park tickets directly from Disney to buying them from other sources, such as AAA, or a ticket broker, such as Undercover Tourist. Also, the packages often have stricter cancellation and payment policies than room-only reservations. The downside to booking the components of your trip separately, however, is that you're not eligible to purchase the Disney Dining Plan, which is only available with vacation packages. The Dining Plan is very popular with many guests because food can be expensive at Disney World, and the Dining Plan allows you to prepay for meals at a discount. The best way to determine if a vacation package is the best deal is to price your vacation out both ways and compare the costs.

    Consider staying at a value resort like the Pop Century. The rates are affordable, especially when you share your room with friends, and you still get benefits like Extra Magic Hours in the parks and the free Magical Express airport transportation. Bring your own bottled water rather than buying it in the parks, and bring cereal bars or other breakfast foods you can eat in your room. Dine at counter-service restaurants, which are cheaper than table-service, or consider sharing a meal at a table-service.

    Come visit me again at the Moms Panel if you need more ideas!
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Meet the Panelist: Amanda, North Carolina

I'm a busy mom of two from North Carolina who loves to find ways to stretch a Disney Dollar so that I can enjoy the luxury of Disney's deluxe resorts and fine dining. Learn More About Amanda

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