A Disney Princess Wouldn’t Wear a Fanny Pack, but a Cheapskate Princess Might!

fanny pack at Disney, fanny pack, why carry a fanny pack, fanny packs are ugly, fanny packs are hideous

Updated for 2017!

The fanny pack. I’m really not a clothes snob, but those are two words I can’t even say with a straight face. The thought of fanny packs have struck fear into the heart of Disney fashionistas for years. Can you imagine Cinderella with a sparkly fanny pack to hold her car keys and lipstick?

Uh, no. [Read more…]

Life Lessons with a Disney Spin: Learning Financial Responsibility in a WDW Gift Shop

Black and white Mickey Mouse doll, colored Mickey dolls, Mickey Mouse toys, Disney princess toys, toys kids like, what do kids buy at Disney

Updated for 2017!

Taking the family off on vacation to Disney World can be more difficult than just securing the financing. You haul everybody off to Orlando for fun, maybe a little relaxation, and some family bonding. But people don’t always cooperate with the best made plans, even if you made them months out from your travel date.  Have you ever watched kids at Disney?

Let’s lump them into four categories: excited, tired, tantruming, and sound asleep.  [Read more…]

Can a Cheapskate Afford to Stay at Disney World During the Week of Christmas?

Disney Christmas card, Magic Kingdom Christmas card, Merry Christmas, Merry Disney World Christmas

While I shout it to the world that going to Walt Disney World during the Christmas holidays is mostly just crazy, due to the insane crowd levels compared to other times of year, I need to point out that the holiday decorations are just spectacular. Standing on Main Street, U.S.A., and watching it “snow” might be worth your headache and the stress level of vacationing with so many other people. But can a Disney Princess afford to pay rack room rates during the busiest time at Disney?

The “Holiday Season” pricing at Disney runs from December 21 to December 31 of this year. Without any sort of discount, a standard room at Disney’s All-Star Resorts will cost you $164, and the prices for this time of year go up from there.

Disney World at Christmas: Would a Cheapskate Spend Up to $30 for a Christmas Ornament?

Disney at Christmas, Christmas, Cinderella Castle at Christmas, Disney Princess Christmas, Disney Christmas decorations,

A standard Holiday Season room at moderate resort level Coronado Springs Resort is $249, compared to around $190 a night for a summer night on a weekday.

The least expensive room, a garden wing room, at the Contemporary Resort goes for $530 a night during Holiday Season, compared to $360 for a Regular Season night on a weekday.

A standard room during Value Season at the Animal Kingdom Lodge will cost $265 a night, with a jump to $470 a night for Holiday Season.

And in the Deluxe Villa category, a studio room at Bay Lake Tower will cost $600 a night during Holiday Season, compared to $485 a night during Regular Season, $415 a night during Value Season.

It’s the Most Wonderful Time of the Year! Photos of WDW during the Christmas Holidays

Disney's Yacht Club at Christmas, Yacht Club, Disney Deluxe Resort, Disney Vacation Club,

Of course you don’t have to stay during those ten days to enjoy the sights and sounds of the season, as holiday decorations start appearing throughout the parks and resorts by the first weekend in November and stay into the early part of January. And you always have the option to stay off property in a less expensive hotel. But for you to enjoy the holiday decorations during “Christmas” staying on property at a Disney Resort, it’s going to cost you more money than other times of year. That’s what a Cheapskate Princess calls a Disney Splurge.

Can a cheapskate afford those resort prices? Yes, but you may have to sell the glass slippers first!

Like fun Disney trivia? Here are some fun holiday facts for the Magic Kingdom from one of my favorite Disney sites, Disney by the Numb3rs.com. You can find all their numerical Disney trivia by using this Disney by the Numb3rs link.

how tall is Disney's Main Street Christmas Tree, what does Disney's Christmas weigh, how many decorations does Disney use at Christmas, who decorates Disney at Christmas

The Magic Kingdom Christmas tree is 26 feet wide, and it takes a 70 ton crane to position the theme park Christmas trees into place each year.

25,000 poinsettias are used to decorate the Magic Kingdom for the holidays, which takes two whole nights to put everything in place.

A Cast Member crew of 30 people do the holiday landscaping at the Magic Kingdom.

The Disney World Resort with the Most Fabulous Christmas Decorations? The Award Goes To…

what does Disney look like at Christmas, Disney Christmas, Disney christmas decorations, holiday decorations, huge Christmas tree, tall Christmas tree, Christmas decorations

How tall is the Christmas tree erected in the center of Main Street, U.S.A., each Christmas season? 65 feet.

Talk about your crazy Florida weather forecasts…There is a 100 percent chance of snow flurries during Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party, taking place on select holiday evenings in Magic Kingdom. And for those who don’t want to pay the $53.95 to $63.95 a ticket for this special party, snow frequently falls on Main Street throughout the holiday season.

Are You Crazy Enough to Go to World Disney World at Christmas?

snow on main street, fake snow, fake christmas, does it snow at Disney World, does it snow in Florida, Christmas snow on Main Street, Christmas snow at Disney World

Thanks to our friends at Disney by the Numb3rs, and stop by their site for some fun Disney trivia. Tell ’em a Cheapskate Princess sent ya!

 

To see more of our Cheapskating Guides, use this link.

Amanda Major Cheapskate Princess

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Disney’s Cheapskate Princess

.

Now let our vacation planner help you plan your trip, totally for FREE!

Earn $20 Rewards for Vacation Referrals!

Use this link for a free no obligation vacation quote from Mike Ellis, our Disney Vacation Planner with Pixie Vacations.

Call Mike at 919-606-6725 or e-mail him at mike@pixievacations.com.

Amanda Major CheapskatePrincess.comAmanda 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-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 mike@pixievacations.com.

Christmas at Disney World: Would You Spend up to $30 for a Christmas Ornament?

Mickey Mouse christmas ornament, Mickey Mouse snow man, Mickey Mouse Club, Christmas ornaments

Updated for 2017!

Souvenirs seems to take on an extra special sparkle during the Christmas holidays at Disney World. T-shirts, hats, coffee mugs, and rows upon rows of Christmas decorations. We put our Christmas tree up about November 1st every year, so I keep Christmas on the brain. But nothing good comes cheap these days, and with the retail cost of Disney holiday ornaments ranging from $10 to $30, I often wonder if this piece of merchandise is worth the expense.

Would a cheapskate pay up to thirty bucks for a Christmas decoration you will enjoy less than probably 1/12 of the year?

Read: The 5 Worst Times to Vacation at Walt Disney World?

fancy Christmas decorations, fancy ornaments, Disney ornaments, Disney Christmas ornaments

We went to the Cheapskate Princess fans on Facebook to see what they thought about buying Disney Christmas decorations.

Yes, it’s worth it.

Tonya,In 2005, we took our boys to Disney World for their first trip.  Zach was into Woody and Ryan was all about Buzz.  My parents bought each of them a Toy Story ornament with their names painted on the backs.  My boys are teenagers now, yet those ornaments are their favorite to hang on the tree still.”

Kelly-Ann, “No matter what time of year we go to Disney we always get an ornament. I love hanging them on our Christmas tree and remembering how much fun we had. They are worth the money in my opinion.”

Lauren, “I keep my ornaments year after year, so I look at it as an investment. I still have my honeymoon ornament from almost 10 years ago and many others.”

Read: Understanding Disney Park Closure Phases: A Cheapskate Princess Guide

Tinkerbell ornament, Tinker bell Christmas,

Dana, “They do have wonderful ornaments this year. I love quite a few of them. But my favorites are the storybook ones that are priced around $10 each. And I think that is affordable for just how cute they are!!!!”

Carrie, “Every year we get out our special $25.99 ornament, and we smile and laugh and remember an incredible trip. Worth every cent.”

Sara, “We started a tradition our first year.  We buy one ornament in the Mickey ear shape and get it personalized with the year on it.  That way every year when we put up the Christmas tree, we can remember each year that we went and relive them.  Love it!”

Read: Are You Crazy Enough to Go to World Disney World at Christmas?

Mickey Mouse as Santa, Mickey Mouse dressed as Santa, Mickey Mouse Santa, Santa, Disney Santa,

No, it’s a bit pricey.

Ashley“I’ve always wanted to buy an ornament but the price really has kept me from doing so up to this point.  I still plan on getting one, but I’m still waiting to find the special one that I won’t mind dropping that much money on!”

Charlotte“I think ornaments are beautiful, but I can’t see spending that for them. I would want more than one for more impact and just can’t see spending so much for ornaments when there are smarter places to spend that kind of money this time of year. If it was after Christmas and I could find them on clearance for under $10, then maybe I would consider it.”

Looks like I fall under the no votes. As you can see by my photos, I love Disney Christmas decorations. I would readily admit they are quality items, and for what you get, they are probably worth what they charge. Unless you drop it. My non-coffee drinking son dropped his just-purchased coffee mug last summer as we loaded the car to come home from Disney. He then announced purchasing anything glass was definitely not worth the money. I have two metal ornaments, not even featured in my photographs, and both were purchased full price at $12.99 in 2012 prices. Those same ornaments are now $17.99 each.

I haven’t found one for more than that amount that I just had to have, so strangers stare at me while I photograph ornaments I never purchase.

Read: The Disney World Resort with the Most Fabulous Christmas Decorations? The Award Goes To…

Walt Disney World Christmas ornament, Christmas at Disney, what to buy at Disney at Christmas

Find a sale.

Maybe what I need to convince me is a sale! All Cheapskate Princesses love a sale.

Kristie, “I love them but wait ’til they’re on clearance after Christmas to expand my collection!

Tom pointed out that you can find sales online, in fact, the Disney Store has sales going on all the time, and shopping on eBay can result in fantastic savings.

Dianna, “We got a few at the Disney store (at the mall, not at Disney) I don’t think they were that much, on sale I think.”

Gretchen, “I got some on clearance online from the Disney Store for super cheap when they had an extra percentage off a while back. They are plain Mickey glass balls. I’m going to personalize them with our names and the year.  Since I got a set of four for about $10 it’s quite a bargain!

Read: It’s the Most Wonderful Time of the Year! Photos of WDW during the Christmas Holidays

Santa Christmas Ornament, Santa ornaments, Disney Santa ornaments, Santa, Disney Moms at Christmas

Find another store.

Jay is shopping non-Disney Stores. “While I love them – check out Target. They usually have Mickey shaped ornaments much cheaper than the theme parks.”

Check out this suggestion from Jarett, “If you visit any of the character warehouse stores, (I know there are two in south Florida, and at least two in Orlando) you can find them much cheaper. Not as big of a selection but always at least 10-20 to choose from. I just bought two for $5, and another for $10!”

So it looks like purchasing pricey Disney Christmas ornaments for some people are an investment in memories, the commemoration of special holidays and happy times.

And for others, paying full price on the spot is definitely out of the question, with the search for a bargain being front and center, regardless of when and where it was purchased.

Read: Where to Find FREE Disney World Theme Parks Christmas Music

Mickey Minnie Mouse Christmas, Mickey Minnie ornament

And if you want to pop over to the Disney Store online to their Ornament Section, just use this link. There are three pages of ornaments, just calling your name, but maybe you better leave your Disney Visa card in the other room, with someone financially responsible.

Disney Christmas decoration prices

Thanks for stopping by, and we’ll see you checking prices, wondering how soon is TOO SOON to put up a Christmas tree!

In my opinion, it’s never too soon. We’ve had Christmas trees in our dining room for years now, covered in…key chains. You can read about it here:

 What to Do with All Those Disney World Key Chains? Put Them on a Tree!

To see more of our Cheapskating Guides, use this link.

Amanda Major Cheapskate Princess

.

Disney’s Cheapskate Princess

.

Now let our vacation planner help you plan your trip, totally for FREE!

Earn $20 Rewards for Vacation Referrals!

Use this link for a free no obligation vacation quote from Mike Ellis, our Disney Vacation Planner with Pixie Vacations.

Call Mike at 919-606-6725 or e-mail him at mike@pixievacations.com.

Amanda Major CheapskatePrincess.comAmanda 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-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 mike@pixievacations.com.

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Three Tips for Surviving Disney World at Christmas with Kids

Survival guide for Christmas at Disney World

Updated for 2017!

Debates occur weekly as to when is the best time to visit Walt Disney World. I am a public high school teacher, so it’s hard for me to play hookey and travel to Orlando while school is in session. If you have ever seen Disney during the Christmas holiday season, then you know why this is a favorite among Disney vacationers. Carols really do fill the air, festive lights are twinkling, and you can almost feel Santa’s impending arrival just by touching any of the thousands of Disney holiday merchandising items. There’s even “snow” on Magic Kingdom’s Main Street on special nights. [Read more…]

Disney Springs Must Do: Visit The Art of Disney Store

art-of-disney-store-at-disney-springs

Updated for 2017!

If I bought everything that caught my eye at Disney World, how totally broke I would be. I’m a child of the 70s, and we did a lot of looking at souvenirs back then, because none of us kids had a Jay Oh Bee (job!) to pay for anything. My parents had money, but they were too busy sneaking in Magic Kingdom with food, and some other junk about teaching me the lesson you can’t have everything you want (No, and Blah, blah, blah is what I heard at the time) to buy us everything we wanted. 

Some of my favorite adult window shopping at Disney is in jewelry stores like Arribas Brothers and the Art of Disney stores.  Even if I am not taking home any huge Disney themed portraits, this has certainly never stopped me from looking.

So while in Disney Springs, an adult must do is the Art of Disney store. [Read more…]

Cheap Ways to Keep the Disney Magic Going After Your Vacation

Knowing the crazy amount of money I spend on Disney vacations, it just kills me to go home and have the memory of my time in Orlando slip away. I’m not that old, but those Disney feelings and memories fade quickly. The longer I am back home, the less I seem to recall unless I am sitting in front my pictures. I miss the smell of Disney, the colors of the buildings and characters, the feel of the monorail bench, the sound of the fireworks, and the songs.  I seem to miss it all.

I’ve picked up a couple of tricks through the years that help me keep that Disney Feeling going when I am nine hours away from Main Street. If you are planing your first or 50th trip to Disney, these ideas are cheap and simple, and what Disney princess wouldn’t love that?! [Read more…]

Mickey Mouse: Today’s Modern Symbol of Financial Success

Mickey Mouse, history of Mickey Mouse, Walt Disney and Mickey, how Walt Disney created Mickey Mouse, Mickey Mouse movies, Mickey Mouse cartoons, why Walt Disney drew Mickey

Updated for 2017!

Most people familiar with the success of Walt Disney will recognize one of his most famous quotes, “I only hope that we never lose sight of one thing – that it was all started with a mouse.” Let’s take a Cheapskate Princess look at the history of Mickey and see how he has become a symbol of financial independence and success over 100 years after Walt Disney was born.

Read: 10 Cheapskate Reasons to Vacation on Disney Property

Mickey Mouse character, Mickey Mouse at the Magic Kingdom, Mickey Mouse philosophy, Mickey Mouse quotes

Mickey Mouse

Mickey Mouse is a cartoon character developed in 1928 by Walt Disney and Ub Iwerks at the Walt Disney Studio.  Mickey usually appears in red shorts, white gloves, and yellow shoes. He has become one of the most recognizable cartoon characters ever created.

Mickey debuted in November 1928 in the cartoon Steamboat Willie after he appeared in a test screening earlier that year. He went on to appear in over 130 films including some of the most well-known titles like The Band Concert, Brave Little Tailor, and Fantasia. Nine Mickey Mouse cartoons were nominated for the Academy Award for Best Animated Short Film, with the film Lend A Paw winning the award in 1942. Mickey Mouse became the first cartoon character to have a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame in 1978.

Beginning in 1930, Mickey was featured as a comic strip character. His self-titled newspaper strip, which ran for 45 years, was drawn primarily by Floyd Gottfredson. Mickey appeared in comic books, and he had a television series from 1955 to 1996 called The Mickey Mouse Club. He now appears in video games, tons of merchandising, and you can meet him “in person” at the Disney theme parks.

Read: Life Lessons with a Disney Twist: Teach Kids to Save Their Money

Mickey Christmas Ornament, Disney Christmas Ornament, Mickey Christmas, Disney Christmas

Mickey Mouse monorail playset

Walt Disney said of his most popular character, “Mickey Mouse is, to me, a symbol of independence. He was a means to an end. He popped out of my mind onto  a drawing twenty years ago on a train ride to Manhattan to Hollywood at a time when business fortunes of my brother Roy and myself were at lowest ebb and disaster seemed right around the corner. Born of necessity, the little fellow literally freed us of immediate worry. He provided the means for expanding our organization to its present dimensions and for extending the medium of cartoon animation toward new entertainment levels.”

So in 1930, Mickey turned out to be a symbol of independence for Walt Disney, his family, and the people who worked both with and for him. And today, visiting “the House of Mouse,” “the House that Mickey Built,” in sunny Orlando is easily now a sign of independence and financial success for thousands of people world-wide every year.

Read: Life Lessons With a Disney Twist: Teach Kids to Be Appreciative

Mickey Mouse balloon, Mickey souvenirs, Disney balloons, Mickey Mouse photo, Disney's Mickey Mouse

Think about the people who can afford Disney vacations. While many have saved for months, some saving for years, to make it to Disney, just taking a vacation in Orlando is a symbol of financial independence. You have made it to the place many people only dream of visiting, and that’s a real accomplishment given the cost.  Taking a Disney vacation is a sign that you are financially successful, even if you have to pay off part of that vacation on your Disney Visa when you return from vacation. You went to Disney; you’ve made it. You are successful.

For many American families, a trip to Walt Disney World has become known as “a childhood rite of passage.” That rite of passage comes with a pretty steep price, and it seems to get more expensive every year. The face of that passage? Mickey Mouse, of course. You’ll probably see his face when you look at your Disney Visa card.

Mickey t-shirt, the Disney Moms, Disney Princess shirt, Disney World shirt

What’s the problem with “making it” to Orlando? Well, you’ll want to go back…

Keep reading Cheapskate Princess, because we want to help you get there without spending a fortune. You’ll need to buy a t-shirt while you’re there, because your shirt – along with the selfie you post on the Internet of you wearing it- is the physical symbol of your success, like a trophy…

Read: Save Money on Disney World T-Shirts by Making Your Own!

Thanks for stopping by, and we’ll see you, standing independently in line for Space Mountain. If you’ve ever checked your credit card balance on your cell phone in line at a Disney theme park, you just might be a Cheapskate Princess!

To see more of our Cheapskating Guides, use this link.

Amanda Major Cheapskate Princess

.

Disney’s Cheapskate Princess

.

Now let our vacation planner help you plan your trip, totally for FREE!

Earn $20 Rewards for Vacation Referrals!

Use this link for a free no obligation vacation quote from Mike Ellis, our Disney Vacation Planner with Pixie Vacations.

Call Mike at 919-606-6725 or e-mail him at mike@pixievacations.com.

Amanda Major CheapskatePrincess.comAmanda 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-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 mike@pixievacations.com.

 

 

Enjoy reading Cheapskate Princess articles? Here is the best way to make sure you keep up with all the cheapskating Disney news. Over on the right side of this page, the right side of any Cheapskate Princess article, and you will find this box.

email

Simply type your e-mail address in the blue box, and you will then receive a confirmation e-mail. Once you confirm your e-mail subscription, several times a week, Cheapskate Princess articles will appear in your e-mail in-box, just like Disney magic, and it’s totally free to sign up.

You don’t have to be a cheapskate to know that…is a real bargain.

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First Trip to Disney: 10 Reasons to Stay on Property

why stay at a Disney World Resort

Updated for 2017!

If you have ever stayed at a hotel off of the Disney property to save some money, you just might be a Disney Princess! Our family has stayed both on and off Disney property, and the reason is pretty simple for staying off site. While there are some really excellent non-Disney resorts and hotels in Orlando, in most cases, staying off-site costs significantly less money. You can make a good argument for staying off site, but there are drawbacks.

Many of the reasons to stay on property are simply because Disney makes it so attractive to stay in their hotels. I’m going to refer to this effect as the Disney Splurge. You get what you pay for in life, and sometimes you just have to splurge on vacation to truly get the most from your hard-earned money.

Here is why staying on Disney property can be hard to turn down, even if it costs extra. [Read more…]

Can a Disney Princess Afford a Vacation at Disney World’s Bay Lake Tower Resort?

Bay Lake Tower at night, how much does it cost to stay at Bay lake Tower, the cost to stay at Bay Lake Tower, should I stay at Bay Lake Tower

My earliest  memory of a Disney hotel is riding through the Contemporary Resort in 1975. My family never stayed there for even one night, as my Dad made no secret that it was WAY out of our price range. I rode through the building by day, then rode home late at night in a 1973 Ford LTD to sleep on my parent’s friend’s couch 28 miles from the Disney property. We snuck our lunch into the park during the 1970s as well, which I absolutely hated. I vowed to stay at the Contemporary when I grew up. Now I look back, and I’m just grateful I was even in Orlando on vacation.

Here I am as an adult,  riding pretty much the same monorail through pretty much the same Contemporary Resort, but hark…what new building is that out yonder monorail window? THAT is Disney’s Bay Lake Tower. If you’ve seen it, you instantly wonder, how much it costs to vacation there? Ok, Disney Princesses, you might want to sit down…

With amazing views of Bay Lake, there is no closer walk to the Magic Kingdom from any Disney resort. The 16-story, 428-room Bay Lake Tower Resort, one of Disney’s Deluxe Resorts, was built to resemble the modern-styled Contemporary, with the two buildings linked by covered walkway. They also share multiple amenities, so you reap many of the fabulous benefits of the Contemporary just by staying next door.

It’s the Most Wonderful Time of the Year! Photos of WDW during the Christmas Holidays

Bay Lake Tower bedroom, inside of Bay Lake Tower, Disney bed, photo of Disney bedroom, Disney sheets, cost to stay at Disney, Disney hotel cost

Room perks of Bay Lake Tower

  • Free Wi-Fi, free wired high-speed Internet is available in all rooms
  • Flat – panel television
  • DVD
  • 24-hour room service is available
  • Your own patio

Resort perks available at Bay Lake Tower

  • arcade/game room
  • on site marina
  • massage/spa treatment rooms
  • 3 outdoor pools and a water slide
  • 4 spa/hot tubs
  • 2 restaurants within walking distance
  • coffee shop/cafe within walking distance
  • poolside bar
  • fitness facility and tennis
  • wedding services
  • room service
  • beach/pool umbrellas

How Can You Save Money on Disney World Souvenirs? One Four Letter Word…

Bay Lake Tower pool, photo of Bay Lake Tower pools, Disney pools, the best Disney pool, swim in Disney pools, swimming pools,

Let’s get to the price with no room discount and before taxes are applied. For Value Season, which includes dates in January, February, August and September, 2013 prices are as follows per night on a week day:

Studio – Standard View – $431

One Bedroom – Standard View – $535

Two Bedroom View – $726

Three Bedroom Grand Villa – Lake View – $1838

For Summer Season, which includes dates in June and July, 2013 prices are as follows per night on a week day:

Studio – Standard View – $482

One Bedroom – Standard View – $584

Two Bedroom View – $924

Three Bedroom Grand Villa – Lake View – $2040

Bay Lake Tower bathroom, Disney bathroom, Disney bathtub, Disney rain shower, Disney resort bathroom, are Disney resorts great, the best Disney resort, Disney hotel room, photos of Disney hotels

And check out Holiday Season, for all of you who really want to experience the Christmas holidays at Walt Disney World. 2013 prices for December 20th to December 31st are as follows:

Studio – Standard View – $609

One Bedroom – Standard View – $776

Two Bedroom View – $1299

Three Bedroom Grand Villa – Lake View – $2441

Notice those are not weekend prices; weekend princes are, of course, even higher.

What Are the 5 Worst Times to Vacation at Walt Disney World?

Bay Lake Tower Living Room, Disney living room, great Disney resorts, love Disney resorts, Disney Princess Resort, Disney sleeper chair, Disney sleeper couch

Have you caught your breath yet?

I did my price research at expedia.com  and Disneyworld.com. What I’ve shown you are show room prices – exactly what you would pay, pre-tax mind you, if you booked a room with no discounts. Remember that prices change frequently, so don’t make any reservations without checking the prices out for yourself.

There are other options for staying at Bay Lake Tower. You can travel during times of year when Disney offers discounts on rooms. I have noticed these occur most often in the fall and pre-spring, when your children are in school.

The Disney Vacation Club offers a chance to pre-pay for your room through a financial arrangement similar to a time share. That topic is for a different day, but it’s certainly not cheap, although I am a fan.

So can a Disney Princess afford to stay at Disney’s Bay Lake Tower without a discount? If you can’t pick up a room discount, you just might have to sell off some of the royal jewels!

price to stay at Bay Lake Tower Disney World

Nine Cheapskate Tips to Celebrate a Birthday at Walt Disney World for FREE!

To see more of our Cheapskating Guides, use this link.

Amanda Major Cheapskate Princess

.

Disney’s Cheapskate Princess

.

Now let our vacation planner help you plan your trip, totally for FREE!

Earn $20 Rewards for Vacation Referrals!

Use this link for a free no obligation vacation quote from Mike Ellis, our Disney Vacation Planner with Pixie Vacations.

Call Mike at 919-606-6725 or e-mail him at mike@pixievacations.com.

Amanda Major CheapskatePrincess.comAmanda 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-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 mike@pixievacations.com.

1st Trip to Disney World: Is Summer the Best Time to Travel?

Disney castle, princess, Princesses, photo of Disney's Cinderella castle, Disney in the summer, Magic Kingdom in the sun,

Updated for 2017!

If you ever stood in a Disney World line, all sweaty and hot, primarily because summer room rates were cheaper than peak holiday times, then you just might be a Cheapskate Princess! Everybody and their Disney loving’ cousin has an opinion about when the best time is to visit Walt Disney World. What is best for your family may not be the best for another.

You may not mind standing in 120 minute plus lines, just as long as you are surrounded by the holiday magic of Disney at Christmas, but your friends may tell you that you are absolutely crazy to travel during holidays. Summer seems to be a reasonable time to take a vacation, but the question must be asked…

If you are planning a first trip to Disney, or even a 10th trip for that matter, should you take the family to Disney during the summer months? [Read more…]

Disney World Food Tip #4: Water Bottles!

Dont buy water at Disney World

Updated for 2017!

If you ever re-filled a water bottle to avoid buying another drink, then you just might be a Cheapskate Princess! The average person needs to drink eight glasses of water on a day of light to moderate activity. When you add in walking miles and standing in often un-shaded lines at Disney World theme parks, there are times when you will definitely need to drink even more water to avoid dehydration.

If you are buying all that H2O on your trip, you are going to $pend a $mall fortune on an already expensive vacation. The solution?

Disney World Food Tip #4: Bring Your Own Bottle With You!

Many new visitors to Disney World associate bag checks with the inability to bring food into the theme parks. Well, thank goodness for us, long gone is the time when you were not allowed to bring food and drinks with you into the parks. So plan ahead and bring in your own water.

We asked our Cheapskate Princess Facebook fans if they re-used water bottles or added anything to their water. Their answers could help you plan your next vacation.

Read: 5 Easy Tips to Save Money on Food at Walt Disney World

 

Bring your own water bottles to Disney World

8 Tips for  Water Bottles at WDW

1. Freeze It

It’s hot most of the year in Orlando. Melanie talked about the heat, “We bring our water bottles from home, and I have flavor packets that we add to it. However, it was so hot last time we went, I was just happy to have plain old cold water to drink.” Many people freeze their water bottles the night before, which allows you to drink cold water as the ice unfreezes. You can even hold the cold bottle on your neck or wrists to cool your body down.

Max offered this great tip,” Pour out about a half-ounce of water from each bottle before freezing.  Water expands when it freezes, and this way, the bottom of the bottles won’t bulge out. And just remember you’ll have to go through bag check, so don’t bring any glass bottles in (that means no Snapple!)”

Mary says they always bring water bottles with them.We fill them up at night and pop them in the freezer. By mid morning in the park, they have started to thaw, and we continually add cold (free from any quick service!) ice water to them. I don’t mind the taste of Florida water, but we always have one or two squeezable drink mixes in our bag to add to the bottles if the kids want them. It saves us a ton of money on drinks and water keeps us hydrated in the heat. Sodas aren’t good for hydration Plus, I’d rather save my money for a Dole Whip Float!”

Read – Disney World Food Tip #1: Why You Should Share Dessert

Bring Dasani water drops to Disney World

2. Recycle It

You can re-use your bottles. Don’t throw the bottles away, but simply refill the bottles throughout the day. We have some suggestions on where to get that water on #3 and #4.

Sarah had a different plan for adults and kids, We reused water bottles for the kids and definitely brought flavoring for the water. The kids enjoyed it because they get plain tap water at home. For the adults, we purchased water bottles with replaceable filters in them, since we preferred to avoid the flavorings. We bought water bottle straps prior to our Disney trip and carried our bottles through all the parks with no issues at all. Would definitely go that route again – it worked great for us!”

Shannon has a helpful suggestion. “If you are carrying your water bottle in your park bag and don’t want everything in your bag to get wet from the condensation, slip the water bottle in a sock.  That way the sock will absorb all the condensation from the water bottle.”  

3. Fill It Up With This

Counter service restaurants and snack spots will often give you FREE ice water, or at least ice, in a cup if you ask. You do not have to make a purchase to ask for a cup of water, and then use this water to refill your bottle.

Misty uses this technique, We just ask for free glasses of ice water at the quick service restaurants.”

Read: Cheaper Breakfast Than Chef Mickey’s? This is One of Our Favorites!

order water for free at Disney World

4. Order Water for It

Speaking of saving money, when you are ordering counter service meals, don’t order soft drinks. Order water instead. It’s free as long as you don’t order the bottle, and you can now use it to fill up your water bottles. Think of the money you’ll save, even if the kids don’t thank you.

Jen plan to use this approach, “I brought my camelbak that has a filter in it. Its kind of annoying to carry though and it gets warm very quickly, so next time I’ll probably just ask for a cup of water at the restaurants. Though one place in Animal Kingdom I believe had the machine out in the open, so I just filled my water bottle with water there.”

Andrea advises, We brought flavors like Crystal Light or Hawaiian Punch in our back pack and added the flavor to free cups of water from the quick service restaurants.”

Galonii, We bring one of those refillable water bottles with a wider top. Because frankly the water at Disney World taste bad! So instead of asking for ice water, we ask for ice. I also bring one water bottle, and throughout the day I’ll keep adding to my ‘ice’ and it melts pretty fast. This way I always have water to drink that doesn’t taste bad!”

Read: What Are the Top Three Character Meals at Walt Disney World?

reuse water bottles at Disney

5. Fountain Fill It

There are water fountains everywhere around the Disney property.

Beth Ann looks for fountains,We take reusable water bottles with us and add Koolaid or Crystal Light mixes to it! We also have a backpack cooler that we carry them in so they kind of stay cool. We just refill at the nearest drinking fountain. It definitely saves money by not having to buy waters or drinks throughout the day.”

Lody, “We have reusable water bottles with a filter in them that we like to bring with us. We can fill them up at any sink or water fountain and the water tastes great. You can buy them for less than $10 on Amazon, and each filter lasts a really long time.

6. Add Flavor to It

While there are water fountains everywhere around the Disney property, not everyone wants to drink it. Many vacationers add flavoring to their water to give it a little extra zing.

Lisa, “I’m not a fan of Florida water, and to buy bottled water in the park is very expensive. So I bring different flavors of the liquid drink mixes. Easy to pack and carry!

Michelle says to add, “Koolaid Singles!”

Heather says, “Bring along the Koolaid flavor shots for the kids and crystal light (with caffeine, of course!) for the parents! Our Disney Vacation Planner was kind enough to send a case of water to our room, but the flavors to add certainly helped keep everyone hydrated and kept us from buying other expensive drinks when we got tired of water!”

Briget seems to be using most of our suggestions,  I bring reusable water bottles that we fill up at the hotel and freeze, and then we bring them in to the park. Buying water for six is way to expensive. We all order glasses of water and go back for another before we leave restaurants, and then we refill our bottles and use fountains. The kids use flavor packets when needed, and I add a lemon tea bag to the bottom of mine. The water at both Disneyland and Disney World tastes yucky!

Cindy is a Britta Water fan,I bring the Brita Water bottles from home. Fill them in the room and then put that water in an empty water bottle that I purchased during the day. Always put Crystal Light in the ‘Disney’ water to help with the taste. Even filtered in my Brita Water bottle it still tastes bad to me.”

Amandawhich happens to be me, says, I like to bring Gatorade with me in powder form or a really strong concentrate. I drink this during dinner with my FREE water cup, and then I add what’s left into my water bottle.”

Read – Disney World Food Tip #8: Avoid Eating Too Much Sugar

saving money on water at Disney World

7. Don’t Get It as a Snack Credit

(unless it’s Free Dining)

If you bring your own water with you, you won’t have to waste those Disney Dining Plan snack credits on water. A much better idea is using those credits to buy cupcakes or brownies. Of course that suggestion is for those of you that purchase the meal plan credits, but I’d still prefer a Disney brownie on vacation over a bottle of water any day.

Laura does use snack credits for water, and she offers this suggestion, I reuse water bottles, and I bring crystal light flavor packs. Another tip I have is when using the dining plan eating Quick Service at my resort, I get a bottle of water or soda but use my resort mug for my drink with my meal. That way I can save the bottle drink for in the park.”

It all goes back to the idea of saving money. If a bottle of water at Disney costs $2.50 and up, you can save around $1 to $2 per bottle, depending on what state you bought your water, and that savings will add up fast.

With the money you save on water, you can spend more $$$ on cool Disney souvenirs, like a purse or a new set of Mickey Mouse ears.

Read: To Save Money on Disney World Food, Eat Breakfast Here!

Disney Princess pirate hat

8. Brita Bottles are a Fan Fav. 

Several fans have suggested the Brita bottles with filters as an alternative to traditional plastic bottles.

TonjaOr first trip is in September, and we bought Brita water bottles with the filter. I’ve been drinking so much more water already!”

Katie, We plan on using the Brita bottle with a built-in filter this time. Save time and a snack credit! Green for the environment and your wallet!”

Christy, “Instead of refilling water bottles, invest in a ‘Bobble’ or a Brita filtered water bottle. You can refill them for the entirety of the vacation, and the filter takes out any odd tastes and/or bacteria if you are refilling from a water fountain. They come in various sizes you can pick up at Target or Walmart. At the end of the day, you can wash out the bottle, air dry it, and reuse it the next day. Not only are you saving money in the long-term, but you are keeping more plastic water bottles from taking up space in landfills. So it’s earth friendly too.”

Read: FREE Disney World Snack and Drink Samples: A Cheapskate Princess Guide

One more Quick tip…

Shannon, “If you are carrying your water bottle in your park bag and don’t want everything in your bag to get wet from the condensation, slip the water bottle in a sock. That way the sock will absorb all the condensation from the water bottle.

Thanks for stopping by, and we’ll see you slipping those water bottles back into your backpack!

To see more of our Cheapskating Guides, use this link.

Amanda Major Cheapskate Princess

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Disney’s Cheapskate Princess

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Call Mike at 919-606-6725 or e-mail him at mike@pixievacations.com.

Amanda Major CheapskatePrincess.comAmanda 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-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 mike@pixievacations.com.

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