Most vacationers walk into a resort like Walt Disney World well-prepared for high prices. However, you may be surprised at the markups on some of the basic essentials you may need during your stay. The following items are not unique to Disney and can be purchased outside the parks and brought in. If you’re looking to slash your vacation spending, these essentials should top your list of things to pack from home.
For this comparison, Walt Disney World prices are compared to the price at a local Target (unless otherwise noted). Similar items are probably a little cheaper at WalMart and a little more expensive at a grocery store like Publix, so individual prices will of course vary outside the parks.
Average Disney Price: $18
Average Store Price: $8
Lesson Learned: Sunblock is essential in Florida and savvy theme park marketers know this better than anyone. If you feel your shoulders roasting and you’ll ill-equipped, you’ll have little choice but to purchase a bottle from one of the gift shops. Plan ahead and bring tons of sunblock with you. Opt for a higher SPF than you usually use or at least keep a higher SPF on hand in case you want to switch to it later on..
Disney Price: $12 for four (or $3 per battery)
Store Price: $8 for 10 (or $0.80 per battery)
Lesson Learned: If you’re using a camera, fan, or any other item powered by batteries, bring extras with you. Don’t leave them at the hotel – keep them on hand. You won’t want to miss out on a half a day’s worth of pictures if your batteries don’t have the good grace to wait till the very end of the day to run out.
3. Water Misting Fan
Disney Price: $19
Amazon.com Price: $10
Lesson Learned: To be fair, these are not absolutely identical items because the Disney Squeeze Breeze has Disney characters on it. If Disney characters are worth an extra $9 to you, get the authentic one. If you only kind of care about them, put some stickers on the cheaper one and you'll still come out ahead.