Smoking at Disney World: Your Guide

where to smoke and vape at Disney World

Since 2019, smoking sections at Disney World parks have been removed. As a result, there are now specific smoking areas designated outside the parks. E-cigarettes and vape pens are included in the ban. If you have a nicotine addiction, where will you be able to smoke or vape on Disney property?

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How Cooking Your Own Meals Can Save Money in Orlando

Updated for 2017!

Welcome to Chef Carl’s. Can I take your order? [Read more…]

Disney Vacation Must Have Snack: Joffrey’s

I seem to snack a lot on vacation. Sweet treats and snacks may not be all that healthy for you, but they cost less money, take up space as you wait for a larger real or buffet, and they just taste GREAT. Joffrey’s has started to become one of my favorites spots to pick up a snack, and Disney is adding more locations to make this easier.

My wallet may not be saying thanks but the old taste buds sure are.   [Read more…]

Tiffins in Disney’s Animal Kingdom: A Cheapskate Princess Guide

Tiffins Animal Kingdom

Got a special occasion and want to try some new dining on your next visit to Walt Disney World in a restaurant like no other on the property? Give Tiffins a try, Disney’s newest signature restaurant and part of the largest expansion in the history of Disney’s Animal Kingdom theme park.  [Read more…]

Must Buy Souvenir? Disney Character-themed Beach Towels

Updated for 2017!

My son bought a beach towel years ago on a Disney vacation. I thought he was crazy, and two years after the purchase, he brought it to me, deciding he was too old to use it. Ah, the trials of pre-teen boys. But now I was the owner of a Disney towel, with a cute Mickey Mouse front and center.

I’ve been using it for at least three years now, off and on for special swimming occasions, and it’s still in great shape. The vidid colors have hardly faded, and the towel is still a quality item.

I wouldn’t describe this as a cheap item. Should you purchase a beach towel on your next Orlando vacation?  [Read more…]

Disney Resort Hopping? Our Best Tip to Watch a Sunset

Disney’s Contemporary Resort opened on October 1, 1971, one of only two original properties located at the Disney World complex alongside Disney’s Polynesian Village Resort.  With an A-frame main building and located adjacent to Magic Kingdom park, it’s one of the most iconic buildings on WDW property. Visiting the Contemporary Resort is a must do.

You don’t have to pay for a room at the Contemporary Resort to look around, however, because you can resort hop. [Read more…]

The Disney Holiday Gingerbread House Kit: Is It Worth the $10?


Updated for 2017!

How do you entertain three older teenage kids during the holidays? Buy them a gingerbread house! We found a Disney “Crafty Cooking Kits” Mickey and Minnie house for $10 at Big Lots.

Here’s what you get for ten bucks: [Read more…]

Where Can You Find Disney Character Watches Under $20?

Updated for 2018!

Ever need a cute gift that also shows off your all encompassing love of all things Disney? Head over to Wal-mart, where you’ll find a large assortment of watches for under $20. 
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Doing Disney World for Less: Souvenir Picture Frames

Updated for 2018!

Souvenirs are expensive at Walt Disney World. It’s not like walking into Wal-mart of T.J. Maxx where items go on sale. There’s almost nothing on sale at WDW, and paying full retail price hurts.

I like to recommend that vacationers purchase souvenir items they can use every day at home, or at least something you can see every day, so you feel like you got the best use of your money. [Read more…]

Cheapskate Princess Caribbean Beach Resort Guide

caribbean beach resort guide

Walt Disney World’s Caribbean Beach Resort is a large, with over 200 acres surrounding a 45 acre lake called Barefoot Bay. There is a 1.3 mile path around the resort and lake which connects all the villages that is great for jogging or walking. The lake provides sandy beaches for sunbathing with hammocks for relaxing, though swimming is not permitted in the lake.

The Custom House at the main entrance is where guests check-in and acts as the arrival and departure points for guests using Disney’s Magical Express airport service. Bell Services is located here too. Check in time is 3 p.m.; check out time is 11 a.m. [Read more…]

The Pros & Cons of Staying at Disney’s Caribbean Beach Resort

Caribbean Beach Pros and Cons

Situated near Epcot and Hollywood Studios at Walt Disney World Resort in Orlando lies the lush tropical-themed Caribbean Beach Resort.  This moderate resort provides the amenities and comforts one would expect from a Disney resort, with a very relaxing island vibe.  If you are looking for a quiet, tropical vacation, this could be the perfect resort for you. It’s a big property at over 200 acres, which has both good and bad points.

Compared to Disney’s value resorts, the moderate resorts typically provide larger rooms, queen beds – though there are exceptions, more on-site dining options, and upgraded pools with slides. Compared to Disney’s Deluxe resorts, moderates typically provide smaller rooms, not as-lush accommodations, fewer on-site dining options and fewer park transportation options. Caribbean Beach Resort provides a great middle ground for first time and seasoned visitors alike.

Let this Pros and Cons of Disney’s Caribbean Beach Resort list help you decide if this is the vacation property for you and your family!

Disney World Resort Hopping

Caribbean Beach Resort of the 2112 rooms, 350 are specially Pirate Themed Rooms

Caribbean Beach Resort Pros:

  • For larger families, rooms can comfortably accommodate 5 adults
  • Other than the Pirate themed rooms, all rooms with 2 beds have 2 queen sized beds
  • Designed like a fortress, complete with water canons, this has one of the best themed resort pools
  • Main pool and kids splash area have zero entry, which is perfect for little ones
  • Never hard to get a chair at the pools, since there are 7 pools to choose from
  • Larger resort size and lower density buildings help keep resort quiet
  • Food Court is adjacent to main pool; very convenient for refill mugs and quick meals and snacks
  • Lush green landscape throughout the resort
  • Newly refurbished rooms feel new and modern yet comfortable and fresh
  • Registered guests receive free resort and theme park parking
  • Registered guests receive access to Extra Magic Hours in the parks when offered
  • Free airport transportation via Disney’s Magical Express
  • Free Disney Theme Park transportation via bus every 15-20 minutes
  • Resort shuttle available, running the interior of all bus stops to Port Royale area
  • Islands of the Caribbean Pirate Cruise offered for the little ones (for an extra fee)

Caribbean Beach Resort Cons:

  • No elevators for those with mobility issues
  • Transportation can take longer than other Walt Disney World moderate resorts as there are two more resort-wide bus stops
  • Larger resort means it can be a long walk from your room to Old Port Royale or to a bus stop
  • Pirate Themed rooms beds are same sized as value resorts and not a fit for those who need queen sized beds
  • No balconies outside of rooms
  • Only location for refill on resort mugs is at the Old Port Royale area, which is not convenient for all rooms

Differences in the Disney World Resort Levels

pros of Disney's Carrbbean Beach Resort

Disney World Caribbean Resort

Disney moderate vacation resorts

Knowing the pros and the cons can certainly help you decide if this is good resort for your family. My assessment is this is most definitely a resort to try for your next Disney vacation.  I think the good qualities outweigh the bad with this property. With the right planning, you can avoid some of the cons with staying here.

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Amanda Major Cheapskate Princess


Disney’s Cheapskate Princess


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Amanda Major CheapskatePrincess.comAmanda Major is the creator of 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-coastal 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. 

We hope we can help save you some money too. Use this link for a free no obligation vacation quote from our Travel Consultant with Pixie Vacations, Mike Ellis. You can also e-mail him at

Most Popular Disney World Souvenirs: Mouse Ear Hats

Updated for 2018!

Disney World is like a huge red carpet of Mouse fashion. You won’t be able to turn five feet without seeing someone with a Disney character on their shirt or on their head. This can be intimidating for first time travelers or even long time travelers; you feel the pressure to be dressed like everybody else, and everybody else seems to have paid for Mickey items to show off on vacation. 

And covered in bright colors and shiny sequins, Mouse Ear Hats are now all the rage. They aren’t the least expensive items you’ll find in gift shops, but they are cheaper than many other items like $49.00 sweatshirts and $125.00 sterling silver necklaces.

[Read more…]