Disney World Vacation Tips and Tricks for a Large Family

by Amy
(Evansville, IN)

Hi all, I have a few Disney World vacation tips and tricks for a large family that those of you with a lot of kids may find helpful. Here are my suggestions on the best way to travel to Disney World on a STRICT Budget that may be especially interesting large families.

My family of 7 booked a trip to Walt Disney World last year for quite a hefty price. We were in the process of adopting our four foster children during this time and felt that Disney World would be the perfect place for our family to celebrate!

The adoption proceedings fell through right after the deadline to request a refund and get our money back. So, we chalked it up to fate and said that we would enjoy one last family vacation before the children were scheduled to be going to another home. The great news is that after months and months of waiting and quite a little bit of fighting the adoption was finally finalized and we were able to give the kids a permanent home this year. So, now we are returning again to really celebrate!

Of course when we asked the kids where they wanted to go there was a unanimous vote of a return trip to Walt Disney World. We knew how expensive it was last year and that money was going to be tight but we had learned a few Disney World Vacation Tips and Tricks for a LARGE FAMILY and we were determined to make it work for the sake of the kids! Imagine my surprise when I was able to save tons of money on this year's trip and we won't be missing out on a thing even though we are traveling for such a cheap price!

The representatives at Disney don't tell you when you book with them that they automatically add all the perks most of which are very pricey and even though chances are that you won't use a large portion of them.

For instance, if you can afford it and plan to use it the park hopper option is great. But if you are a large family that is making the trip with young kids it is difficult to pack everyone (including multiple strollers) on a bus to get to the next park.

On top of all this you have to go through bag check again and for what our group got out of it, it all seemed like a big waste of time. So the Park Hopper was useless to us. I got rid of it this year and that is just the first of my Disney World vacation Tips and Tricks I have to share!

Another expensive item we deleted was the water parks option! If your family loves the Disney waterpark this tip might not help you, but my experience has been that when we go to Disney we spend more time at the rides, the shows and the parades, not swimming. Our family got hours of swimming in at the hotel. All Disney pools are heated and offer kid friendly areas and our kids were fine with this, AT NO EXTRA COST!

We realized that we not much time was spent hanging out in our room last year. We were too busy swimming and visiting the attractions so we got reservations at a value resort this year and booked 2 rooms for a cheaper price than we paid for one cramped room that we booked at the mid-priced resort last year. We still get to enjoy the extra magic hours and bus transportation.

Another thing the agents don't tell you when making your room reservations is that they book the preferred rooms for you unless you specify you don't need one. Without having a preferred room, you might have to walk a bit further to the bus stop but this can save you some cash.

The best of all Disney World Tips and Tricks I have to share is that if you go right after school starts in the fall, the crowds are thinning out and Disney offers free Dining! Just by booking reservations at a Disney resort we get FREE FOOD! And meals do not include cheap food either! I have made reservations for my family to eat at some of the best restaurants and the kids get to Dine with the Characters! All meals are of the "all you can eat" variety. Plus we get free snack credits and free counter services to use. Some places have deals where you can get half a baked chicken plus half a rack of ribs and sides.

What a relief to not worry about paying an expensive price for the trip when we get there and not having to say no to the kids' requests for Mickey Ice Cream while waiting for the parade.

Our family has 3 adults and 4 kids (9, 8, 5, and almost 3) and our trip is booked from September 10th-16th consisting of 7 days/6 nights with two rooms at the All Stars Movie resort with Free Basic Dining and 6 days of Park Tickets. We will spend our first day in downtown Disney and swim at the hotel for the grand total of $2200 by putting my Disney World Vacation Tips and Tricks and secrets for a LARGE FAMILY to work!

I know that is still not cheap but considering we did this last year at a price of around $5,600 for the same amount of time it averages out to a fun, worry Free trip to Disney at about $45 dollars a person per day.

Please, even if you aren't on a limited budget just be careful when you make your reservations! Make sure the options added to your accommodations fit the needs of your family! It stinks to pay for stuff that you don't need only to find out that you could have vacationed twice for the price you paid for one single trip!

Before closing I have one more Disney World Tip and Trick to save you money; Disney has photographers EVERYWHERE in the park!

Buy a free passport card (or more if you are going to separate at all as the pictures can be combined online). The pictures are expensive at the park but if you wait to get online at home you can order a CD of all the pics taken with copyrights to them for around 100 dollars. Its a great money saving tip for large families!

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