Let’s go shop smarter for souvenirs in Orlando.
The two Orlando discount stores are called Disney’s Character Warehouse, stores that are designed to be clearing houses for out of season and over-stock merchandise. I shopped at the Vineland Ave. location, because it was somewhat near Disney Springs. “Somewhat” means it was within a 10 minute drive accounting for traffic; it could take 20-30 minutes on a busy traffic day. This particular location is much closer to Walt Disney World and carries a wider variety of merchandise than the International Drive location.
Parking can be absolutely insane; I was told by a local resident that Vineland Outlet Mall shopping is busy pretty much all year. The earlier you go in the day, the better chance you have of finding a parking spot with less searching. We finally parked in the free above-ground parking lot. If this is your first visit, find a guide map/sign in the center of the sidewalk. Now head straight for the food court, because the Character Warehouse is located right next door.
The merchandise stock changes often but usually carries clothing, mugs and other souvenirs. Merchandise found here are mostly up to 50% off prices you see in the theme parks, with some of the items marked 70% off.
Man, do I love a sale…
What type of Disney items are at the Warehouse?
Stock will change, sometimes daily, but the usual merchandise you find in stock are:
clothes (baby, toddler, kids, men and women)
all sorts of toys
jewelry (expensive and inexpensive)
Disney Cruise merchandise
Theme Park Tickets, though don’t expect a discount on these. (Don’t we wish!)
They have a lot of merchandise.
Back in the day when these were popular and traded everywhere, there were rows of Vinylmlations, boxed and looking brand new – 5 for $10.
There were racks of t-shirts from $5 to $15 and up.
You like scarves? There were Mickey Mouse-themed scarves, regular $21.99, for $6.99 and $11.99.
And on and on go the bargains.
What sort of fantastic bargains did we find?
Our family found bargains enough that I would recommend you drive off Disney property long enough to pay a shopping visit.
I bought the following items:
- summer sandals $29.95
- a black Mickey sweatshirt $29.95
- a red Christmas Mickey t-shirt $21.95
- a blue sweatshirt ($44.95).
Retail price, that’s $126.80, though I’m not factoring in tax for simplicity.
How much did I pay?
Just $37.80 for those four items. Rounding up the numbers, I save about %66 on my entire purchase.
No joke: I may never be able to pay Disney retail again.
Not everything found in the Warehouse was in pristine condition. I had to sew up a loose spot on the sandals, but that was an easy fix to save %60.
The other clothing I bought seemed just fine. While looking through the store, I saw scarves with thread pulls, and some glassware with visible scratches.
But I also found a rack of t-shirts that were dated two years prior on sale for $.99. Only catch? Every shirt was a size small. Yes, sizes can be limited, but hey, you may luck out!
Write down these two addresses for your next vacation to Orlando. After clipping coupons to send yourself on vacation, you deserve to come home with some great stuff, and it might as well be real Disney bargains!
Disney’s Character Warehouse at Orlando Premium Outlet International is located at 4951 International Drive, Orlando, FL 32819.
The hours are Monday through Sunday 10:00 am to 9:00 p.m., and the phone number is 407-354-3255.
Disney’s Character Warehouse at the Orlando Premium Outlet Vineland Avenue is located at 8200 Vineland Avenue, Orlando, FL 32821.
The hours are Monday to Saturday 10 a.m. to 11 p.m., Sun 10 a.m. to 9 .pm. (407) 477-0222.
1. Is there an online Character Warehouse store?
No, not right now.
2. Will they take Disney Gift Cards?
Disney’s Character Warehouse is Disney-owned, and they do take Disney Gift cards, so you can keep your Visa card in your wallet to avoid those pesky interest charges.
3. Are there other Character Warehouse locations other than in Orlando?
If you are in other parts of Florida, drop by additional Character Warehouse locations at Sawgrass Mills Mall in Ft. Lauderdale and the Dolphin Mall in Miami.
4. Do they offer Cast Member Discounts?
And for you former Cast Members, I made a quick call to the store, and a Cast Member told me Cast Members receive 10% off. (Remember this could change at any time, so ask at the register before you expect a discount.) Woohoo! More savings…
5. Is there an online store?
Not right now. They seems to be selling enough merchandise in person.
Our readers have left feedback about their shopping experiences
Rebecca, “I hit up the store on I-Drive a couple of times a year as I make trips to that outlet mall in general (I live an hour away) and I am DANGEROUS in there! I love to go just after the turn of the year to get ‘last year’ stuff….in fact, last year I grabbed my Mickey Christmas PJs I had looked at just before christmas but didn’t pick up. I was then glad I hadn’t!”
Deb, “We took a cab from Disney Springs to the outlet mall and it was under $10. Each way. The savings are worth the drive, and there is also many other great stores that have very good prices. When the parking lot is jammed valet parking would cost almost as much. I did see some people also use public transportation to there as well from Disney Springs.”
Joyce, “I shop these stores as much as I can, and a few years ago I was in Las Vegas and found a location. I was able to get candy corn Mickey ears that said Happy Halloween (no date) for 1.99 a pair. I bought five pairs. This past Oct., I was in WDW and people keep commenting on my ears. I also bought the Minnie glitter ears headband and some other ears I am saving for a future trip. I love these stores! In Oct. I was able to get Minnie Mouse ponchos for $3.99 each for kids and $5.99 adults in Orlando. These stores are well worth a trip!“
Audrey, “We love this store! We always stop on our way home and spend hours in there looking.“
Heather, “So on the advice (and physical directions) from my friend Amanda, we found the Disney Character Warehouse off of Vineland Ave near Downtown Disney. We decided to do this on our way home from Disney to end our trip with cheap Disney stuff. We loved it and I saved over $54.00. I even took pics of my great deals! So yes, take Amanda’s advice and go shop cheap! No one will ever know unless you tell them!“
Thanks for stopping by for a look at great Disney bargains, and we’ll see you looking through the racks at the Character Warehouse.
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Amanda Major is the creator of cheapskateprincess.com. She remembers her first visit to Magic Kingdom like it was yesterday, because she had a ham sandwich tucked in her shorts pocket. The whole family snuck in their lunch; you can’t make that kinda stuff up. 40 years worth of trips to Orlando later, she is still trying to save money on vacations.
Amanda is a Disney Vacation Club Member and Annual Pass holder. Her amazing husband, band director Carl Major, plus three teen children and two dogs keep her busy. Amanda teaches Leadership to high school seniors in the almost-costal town of Foley, Alabama. Read about her cheapskating local vacations with this link. When she’s not writing, she’s reading, walking somewhere, or paddling a kayak. Life is indeed a blast.
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