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World Showcase Cast Members with food and drinks

With prices continuing to rise at Walt Disney World, every dollar counts. An ideal Walt Disney World vacation is one where you have a bit of breathing room in your budget to splurge. However, that breathing room can quickly get sucked away by weird incidentals, last minute purchases, and stealth expenses. We’ve talked before on Theme Park Tourist about easy hacks to save money on your next Walt Disney World vacation (in two parts), but the easiest hack of all is to always double-check these crucial areas. You might have been spending money on previous trips that you didn’t even know about.

1. Always see if you have a discount

World Showcase Cast Members with Food

Image: Disney

This goes both for planning your trip and for once you arrive. Always, always, always see if you have a discount, especially if you are an annual passholder or Disney Vacation Club member.

Walt Disney World discounts may seem hard to come by, but there are a surprising number of ways to find them. AAA is one option, both for getting tickets and for non-Disney owned dining establishments. Undercover Tourist is another way to get ahold of discounted tickets. As for dining, we mentioned in our article about birthday freebies that a number of non-Disney owned dining locations have rewards programs you can sign up for to get discounts. Signing up for Tables in Wonderland is another option for WDW regulars if the math works out in your favor.

If you work for a large company with benefits, you may also have access to a breadth of discounts for your trip including airfare, rental car, hotel, and dining… and never forget the money-saving option of double-checking if you can rent Disney Vacation Club points instead of directly booking a room.

Windtraders in Pandora

Image: Disney

As for Annual Passholders and Disney Vacation Club members, never take anything for granted. Particularly at counter service locations, you will often be told no in regards to discounts, but I have been surprised more than once. At all merchandise and dining locations, always ask if there is a discount. If you have friends and family with you, ask in those situations too. I have never had a cast member tell me I couldn’t use my discount for something my friend was buying, so long as we approached the counter together. Even if you are just a Florida resident, always call Walt Disney World resort reservations directly to see if they are offering any discounts that aren’t posted online. Go for it!

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