We've all got to eat, right? And we all know when you are on vacation, food costs a bit more. But how much does it got to eat at Disney for a day?
There are some variables, and it really depends on if you are a quick service diner, like to sit table service, or if you are a snack and go kinda person. Prices are also going to be much higher if you are doing character dining. Depending on where you choose to eat is going to determine your price.
But...how vague is that? You already know that, right? So how about a breakdown for you.
Let's pretend that you are spending three days at Disney World. One day for Magic Kingdom, one day for Hollywood Studios, and one day for Animal Kingdom.
I'm going to present three days worth of meals. Of course, you can mix and match, but this gives you an idea of the general costs. No two days are going to be the same, this is just pure research. Each comes with a pretend scenario.
For our purposes, we will assume that these are adult meal, and that there are no alcoholic drinks bought. If you enjoy those, awesome! But budget, because you know they aren't cheap! We will also assume that there are no character meals. Each meal is bought from a Disney owned place. We will also assume two snacks a day, but no dessert at meals. We are also not buying drinks except for at meals, but plan for those too, if you buy them outside of mealtimes.
Create these sample menus for yourself, mased on what you enjoy eating. The prices will guide, but you might also see how you can cut back a little. Disney generally has generous portions. Perhaps you want to skip a salad or bread. Maybe at lunch you drink water.
This also allows you to see snacks and meals come in all different price ranges. And...quick service isn't just burgers or chicken fingers!
Day One Magic Kingdom
With so much to do at Magic Kingdom, you plan to get an early start. Therefore, you are going to be grabbing a bite to eat from the resort grab and go while waiting for resort transportation. You'll eat a quick service lunch, and splurge on a nice dinner.
Breakfast - Pastry and a coffee from grab and go
Lunch - Cosmic Ray's
$10.99 Greek salad with chicken strips
$3.99 fountain drink
$7.19 Mickey Pretzel
Dinner - Tony's Town Square
$11 Garlic bread for the table
$36 Butcher's Steak
$3.99 fountain drink
$5.99 Dole Whip
Day One Total for Food: $88.13 (Does not include dinner's gratuity)
Day Two: Hollywood Studios
You got up that morning with plenty of time to spare, so you pop into your resort for breakfast. You'll drab a sit down lunch, but plan to do a quick dinner, so you don't miss the nighttime spectacular!
Breakfast- Resort food court
$10.99 Ham and cheese omelet
$4.99 Orange juice
Lunch- Sci-fi Dine-in
$18.00 Over roasted turkey sandwich
$3.99 fountain drink
Dinner- Backlot Express
$11.99 Cuban Sandwich
$3.99 fountain drink
$6.79 Funnel cake
Day Two Total for Food: $66.24 (Does not include lunch's gratuity)
Day Three: Animal Kingdom
It's another grab and go on the way to Animal Kingdom! Lunch is your favorite spot, and sitting next to the river to watch the wildlife. Dinner is a second quick service stop, as there is really only one Disney owned sit down there, but that's okay, you've a long line to stand in for Flight of Passage and don't want to waste time.
$6.99 Breakfast bagel
$3.99 apple juice
Lunch: Flametree BBQ
$15.69 Chicken and ribs combo
$3.99 fountain drink
$4.99 Soft serve
Dinner: Satu'li Canteen
$12.79 Cheeseburger pods
$3.99 fountain drink
$9.29 Buffalo chicken chips
Day Three Total for Food: $61.72
One thing I find really interesting is that you'll leave each of these meals full. You might not even want a snack or if you do, maybe you'll split one. Also, none of these meals are boring. They aren't standard theme park fare. In fact... my stomach is growling just reading these menus!
Using these sample menus, you can easily see that a day of quick service, plus two snacks will run around $60. Depending on the location AND the item ordered, around $70 or so (without gratuity) for sit down, per person. Take those numbers from your own sample menus, and use that to guide how much you'll need to plan for meals!
I admit, I'm an absolute sucker for Mickey shaped items, so when ShopDisney got these fantastic foam soap dispensers in...I bought two. I mean, the kids need one too, right?!
This little beauty is sitting in out downstairs half bath, ready to delight each user, giving a little puff of Disney magic!
Of course, it wouldn't be as great if you couldn't refill it, and I have, successfully many times, and it still works beautifully. This does take the foaming soap refill, and like many of you, I've made my own with liquid soap, but I have not done that with this bottle. I don't want to risk damaging it, so I've only used the foaming soap refill.
There is a little trick though to get the perfect Mickey shape. Do you see the little white bits on the side of the soap pump? Touch your hand to those. If you do, you get a perfect Mickey head each time. Otherwise, it looks a bit off. It's still Mickey, but only Mickey-ish.
These are available for $20 from Disney, and if you happen to be going to the Parks this year, maybe you can snag the 50th anniversary themed one too! I know I'm going to try!
Though $20 is a lot for a bathroom soap dispenser, I have to be honest, the joy it brings with each handwash is priceless! And if you have young kids who might squeeze gobs and gobs on...or skips washing, this is perfect because it gives the right amount, and makes washing up fun!
Easter is coming! But so is our Disney trip. As much as I LOVE hiding a riot of colors in our yard and watching the kids run around, each year it's a bit of a struggle to stuff those eggs. My kids aren't really into candy, and food allergies complicate things at times. We've done stickers, coins, small trinkets...but so much of it just lays around.
This year, I wanted to do some fun surprises, but also help toward their Disney savings, so I quickly created some Mickey Money! I'm sharing the printable with you.
Print it on colored paper if you like, or color it! Assign each kid a particular color and you can use this for Easter eggs, chore rewards, or anything else! Hey...I'm not above a bribe if need be.
I realized belatedly, that these print out kind of big, so I'm going to show you how to make these smaller. You'll simply choose to print off two pages per page printed. Here's how:
I hope you enjoy this fun little printable! I'm hiding fifteen of each of these for my kids, which they can trade in for the $15 gift cards I picked up at the Disney Outlet.
You can easily find $25 gift cards at Target too, or maybe you just want to let your kids collect, and you'll reward at vacation time! Either way, less junky stuff laying around, and more Disney moola!
You can click below to find the file. You can also click here, to access my other fun, free printables. (Like an awesome stroller sign, or packing list!)
I hope you have as much as I will passing these out to my kids!
If you'd rather be rope dropping than taking time to linger over breakfast, you aren't alone! But, the fact of the matter is people have to eat. Even if you aren't a huge breakfast eater, chances are someone else in your party is, and you really do need a little fuel to keep you going!
You could grab something at the park once there, and many do, but just as many would rather watch their dollars, and breakfast in the room or while waiting in the transportation line.
These ideas are all perfect for those staying in a value resort. There's a fridge, but no microwave except for in the food court. If you are are in a room with a microwave or a small kitchen, then you have a LOT more options!
Chances are you already know how easy a few of these are, but there could be some surprises! I've got a list of 25 for you! Chose one or combine a few for a fast, easy breakfast and spend your money on more important things! Like souvenirs!
1. Cold cereal (You can buy milk from a resort food court or have delivered!)
2. Thawed breakfast sandwiches (heat in the food court microwave)
3. No-cook overnight oatmeal
4. Pastries (donuts, honeybuns, etc)
5. Yogurt and granola
6. Fresh fruit and cheese
7. Granola bars
8. English muffins and jam
9. Fruit cups / Applesauce
10. Precooked bacon or sausage
11. Bagels and cream cheese or avacado
13. String cheese
14. Cottage cheese
15. Graham crackers
16. Crusty loaf, cheese, and olives or pesto
17. Biscuits and apple butter
18. Instant breakfast shakes
19. Dried fruit
20. Beef jerky or meat sticks
21. Instant oatmeal (using water from the well washed coffee maker)
22. Crackers and sunbutter
23. Smoothies (there are several refrigerated brands)
24. Bread with cheese, tomatoes, and avadaco
25. Last night's leftovers!
While there are so many more things you can do, maybe some of these will give you ideas for your next trip. We always pack breakfasts, (budget, time, and food allergies!) but I actually really love doing that, because my kids and I are not huge eaters first thing in the morning. By tossing some of these into our park bags, we end up having a snack when we are hungry, but save a ton of time and money!
I admit it...total sucker for a pretty gift card. It could even be empty and a little voice in my head goes Ohhhhhh and it sounds a LOT like the Little Green Men from Toy Story for some reason...
A few years back, I was incredibly disappointed when Disney did away with the pretty gift cards! They completely stopped, and only had the red Mickey. I bet you know which one I mean. The one that everyone sells.
I'm thrilled that a few months back, they brought BACK these amazing gift cards. Best of all? There are SO many incredible designs to choose from. I bought myself the three above. When you order your gift card, it comes in a nice envelope.
And then once you open the envelope...is your gift card, in a beautiful card!
The card tells where you can use it, how you can use it, and the value of the card.
I'll be honest...I'm not sure what I love most! The pretty card, the pretty gift card, or the fact possibilities are endless...you could frame the cards...make ornaments...bookmarks...gift tags...there's a lot of creative possibilities here.
We typically pay off our Disney vacations with gift cards. Here's why! (Hint! I don't pay retail!) And when strolling through the parks, a gift card is how we cover our meals, souvenirs, and etc. The kids also have a souvenir, and one of the ways I like to tell which is the food card, which is Kid #1's card, etc, is by each thing of person having their own separate card. It helps me see if we used all we had budgeted for or not.
As a matter of fact, there are a LOT more ways to use a Disney gift card than you may realize! I've got a list of 11 different ways you can use your Disney gift card while on your vacation.
Our kids loving making their own purchases too, and it's such a time saver to pull out the Iron Man card and know who it belongs to, or the Darth Vader one. I'm never even worried about my kids losing their gift cards. Why? Well, because of the 10 second, less than a dollar way to make sure you kid won't lose it!
When you buy these gift cards from the site, there is a minimum of $25 to get the card. If you are a card collector, Disney Stores and Disney Parks will still let you put as little as $15 on a card. When we vacation, I snag a few of these cards for $15, and gift them along with the kids' birthday cards, or Easter baskets. It's an easy way to help them save. As a matter of fact...one year Santa even dropped some in the stockings! How awesome of him!
We are planning our summer trip to Disney World, and there are droids to be build, saber accessories to buy, and more plushies than our van can likely hold, so the boys know they need to save up!
Stop by Disney's site to browse their gift cards. What's your favorite? I've so many I love!