I get many questions from people who are thinking about visiting Walt Disney World and want Disney World vacation tips and suggestions. Disney vacation planning can be very involved and confusing as well, so the goal of this series is to start at the beginning, and look at everything you need to think about, in the general order you need to think about it. Each week’s post will be numbered and link to all the others so that, when complete, you will have a guide with all the steps and information you need to plan your own Disney magic.
It should be no big surprise that “souvenirs” can be huge budget busters and are one of the quickest ways I know to kill any hopes for an affordable Disney vacation. Especially if you have little ones, the cries for “Buy me this” and “I want that” can be very hard to ignore. So here are a few things that we have found that help keep our souvenir spending from getting out of hand.
- I am a big fan of setting a daily spending budget…even for kids. On our first trip, our daughter was seven, and we set aside some money each day that was “hers” to spend as she wished. It was not a lot, I promise you, but having her own money to use, meant that when she used it up, she was done for the day. No complaining, whining, or begging. Once it was gone, it was gone. And it worked. 🙂
- There are a lot of quite inexpensive options for souvenirs! Pressed pennies, postcards, pencils, pins all are quite affordable and can actually be the start of a new collection for a child that gets added to on each vacation. Kids love to collect things!
- Consider bringing some “souvenirs” with you, or have a box shipped to your hotel. Many families have found that kids love to get a surprise from Mickey when they wake up every morning, and these little surprises can minimize the need to beg for things in the parks.
- Two words: character autographs. Hugely popular, and really, about as cheap as you get! Bring something other than a book, like a tee shirt, or hat and give the character a sharpie to sign with: instant souvenir that will be cherished for years.
- Take your own pictures, or give your camera to a castmember to photograph your entire family. You don’t have to pay for Photopass pictures to get your entire group in a picture.
These are just a few ideas, but believe me a little creativity, can go a log away towards keeping your souvenir budget in check. Fun does not have to be expensive! The best souvenirs you will come home with will be your memories…and those don’t cost a thing….but are truly priceless.