Disney on a budget - AmericaNowNews.com

How to do Disney on a budget

It's the trip of a lifetime - one every family wants to take, but many think they can't afford.

A trip to Disney World can cost as much as a trip to Paris, but it doesn't have to.

"Our friends think it isn't affordable, but it really is," said Natalie Ogden, who travels with her husband and two children to the Magic Kingdom every year.

"Once you do it enough times you become like pros and you learn where you can save," her husband Ken added.

They use websites like Mousesavers to find ways to trim their budget.  Mary Waring runs the site which includes 300 pages of tips and tricks.

"I do the research for you.  You shouldn't have to.  Our team tracks down the deals that Disney doesn't advertise and we know which hotels have the best prices and what time of year will give you the most value for your money," said Waring.

She points out that the least expensive on-site breakfast that includes a visit with the characters is at Disney's Grand Floridian resort.

"No matter where you stay you can go to that breakfast and it's in one of Disney's most lovely hotels," Waring said.

As for where to stay, Waring says one of Disney's "value" resorts is a great value in the off-season.

Disney staff showed us what one of the rooms and suites in a value resort looks like.  It was sparse, but clean and roomy.  The suite had two bathrooms and a kitchen.  Just like any other Disney hotel it had a very kid-friendly swimming pool and activities.

"We want everyone to be able to stay here without concern for their budget," said Disney spokesperson Yadira Ambert.

"Our value rooms can be as affordable as $89 per night or even as low as $69 with some meal plans.  We also have a deal on tickets where the longer you stay on property, the less you pay for your tickets to the parks," she added.

Right on the home page of the Disney website you can customize your vacation based on your budget.

The Ogdens, however, have found a way to cut the cost of their annual trip in half.  They travel at a time when the dining plan that Disney offers, which essentially turns your vacation into an all-inclusive, is free.

"It's usually right around the end of January.  I find out a few months before through websites like Mousesavers when it is and we book our trip then.  We get two meals a day for free.  It saves us hundreds of dollars," Natalie Ogden said.

They do have to pull their kids out of school to travel during this time but they say it's worth it considering the savings.

Copyright 2012 America Now. All rights reserved.

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