Planning a Disney Vacation

Cinderella castle Disney World

“You can design and create, and build the most wonderful place in the world. But it takes people to make the dream a reality.” – Walt Disney

Ready to make the dream a reality? Walt Disney World is often listed as one of the most desirable places to visit at least once in life but it can be overwhelming when all of the choices are presented to planning a visit. With four theme parks, two water parks, twenty-plus hotels, and numerous other activities part of the Disney properties many people wonder where to begin. Use this 5 step guide to start your Disney vacation planning today.


1. Determine your overall budget and what time of year you will take your trip. 

It is easy to spend several thousands of dollars on a family vacation to Walt Disney World, but that doesn’t mean you have to. Traveling during off peak times, can reduce costs (and crowds). Try to have a few date ranges available to find the best prices possible. If you know there is a very specific date range that you can travel, make your plans as far ahead of time as possible to guarantee availability and the best prices. By having a date range and dollar figure right off the bat you can determine what is and is not feasible.

2. Research and make a list of the experiences you would like to have.

With so many options available, narrowing down what is and is not important to you helps save time and money. If you only want to visit one of the theme parks then buying a park hopper pass won’t make much sense. If you know you’ll be spending much of your time in the parks, having an off-site hotel or value Disney hotel will likely be sufficient. If you’re a more spontaneous traveler, leave room in your plan to allow for this and make choices that won’t limit you.

3. Gather price quotes to match the experiences you’ve listed.

Now that you know what you would like to do it’s time to figure out if it all will work into your budget. My Disney Experience is an online portal that lets you plan your trip from your computer. Disney also provides support for travel planning via telephone at (407) 939-5277. You will be able to get the most current and up-to date pricing directly from Disney. They also will be able to let you know of any promotions or specials available. Be sure to also ask about on-site accommodations and amenities provided.

Also, look for other options like apartments and off-site hotels. This lets you get the full picture of what’s available. A Disney hotel might seem more expensive but it might offer all the amenities you’re looking for to have a complete vacation. Conversely an apartment might be a better fit and give you freedom and additional space at a better value.

4. Develop a base itinerary based on the prices you’ve received.

Once you’ve got all the information it’s time to make the tough choices. Sketch out an itinerary or two and fill in the experiences and prices for each day. Decide what is and is not possible based on time and budget.

5. Explore and determine extra experiences and expenses.

Additional considerations should be made for food (Disney has a meal plan that can be purchased onsite or ahead of time), souvenirs, and other costs such as participating in the Bibbidi Bobbidi Boutique or dining experiences that are not included in the meal plan.

Of course, you can always take the easy route and vacation on the fly, just by making your hotel reservations and purchasing park passes but that’s not much fun. Or is it?

Disney Hotel


  1. Judy C(Judy Cowan) says

    Thanks for the tips, we are planning on doing a Disney vacation soon!

  2. I am planning to take my family this summer,as we have never been to Disney.Can you help me in doing so . heard a lot of it from friends . hopefully I can make it with my family. we are a family of four. Thanks.Hope to see u all soon

  3. I would like to take my family this summer to the Disney world, as we have never been there. would love to win this.Heard all great things about it. My dream to visit it this year with my family . I hope to win it for my 2 lovely adorable girls and beloved hubby. Love disney- dreaming of it.

  4. Great tips! We've never been to Disney World but have been to Disneyland plenty of times.

  5. Fantastic tips, I agree with all! There's much savings to be had if you look!

  6. I'm sure there is lots to do at Disney and your right to research so you find just what you want to experience.

  7. we have been to Disney a couple of times and it was so much fun. It really does take a bit of planning, though, to fit in everything you want to do!

  8. Good tips — we visit Disneyland quite often and have season passes but I STILL never feel like I do everything right. I love hearing other people's tips and suggestions!!
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  9. Those are some great tips. I will be planning a trip hopefully soon.
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  10. Chasity Boatman says

    How fun! I'm sure you'll have a wonderful time.

  11. We just got our DVD in the mail. I can't wait to start planning our vacation!

  12. I would LOVE to take my son to Disney World! I don't know which one of us would have the most fun but I'm sure we would both have fun 🙂

  13. Yay!! I've been here ages ago and it was so much fun but can cost you a lot though! Well maybe we didn't really plan. Thanks for the tips!

  14. craftdictator says

    I haven't been to disney in years. I'd love to go back to disney though! I might need to start planning a trip!
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  15. These are great tips! We're hoping to visit Disney again this year, and have such fond memories of the last time we visited as a family.
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  16. KennethAgudo says

    I would really love to go in this place. It's like a fantasy land 🙂
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  17. It is one of our most favorite places to visit… And the tips you gave are spot on.. It is so hard to budget when you are down there because you want to do and see everything..

  18. mamatomanyblessings says

    The happiest place on earth! We love disney and go frequently especially since it's only 3 1/2 hours away!
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  19. Great tips! Planning makes all the difference in vacation success and budgeting.
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  20. Thanks for the tips. We have not been to Disney as a family in the longest time. I would love to take my kids before everyone is out of the house. Thanks for the tips.

  21. Disney's a rocking good time. When we lived in Florida we went often (great discount for residents). Now we live in the mid-west and haven't been for years. I miss it!

  22. I have never been to any Disney location, but I have really wanted to. My grandmother took me and my younger sister to Sea World when I was about 10 and wanted to take us to visit Disney, but wanted to wait until we were both old enough to really appreciate it. But when we reached that age, she thought I was a little too old to get into it. So now I'm 27 years old with this burning desire to visit Disney!
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  23. I don’t know when we’ll ever do a Disney vacation. I haven’t been to Disneyland since I was 9. My kids have never been, maybe I should really fix that!

  24. We are planning a trip to Disney this summer. Thanks for the tips, they will come in handy!
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  25. Nice post, you are phenomenal in this post and share some useful points about laptops and it's accessories. I bookmarked your page and waiting for your next post.=/<3


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