I don’t know about you, but I don’t have a money tree growing in my backyard. We’re a regular, middle class family who just happens to love going to, what can be, an expensive vacation destination. That’s why, whenever I can, I get other people to pay for my Walt Disney World vacations.
There are several ways to do this. And I’m going to share with you how you can get other people to pay for your Disney vacations, too!
# 1 Disney Gift Cards
I know this sounds like a no brainer but hear me out. Everyone in my family knows I’m a Disney nut. Anytime my birthday rolls around (sooner and sooner each year) or Christmas comes to town, I ask for Disney gift cards. But just like you don’t want to carry around a wad of cash in the parks, a couple dozen $25 gift cards might not cram into your wallet. Have no fear, the Disney Gift Card Managing Site is here!
Simply collect all of your cards, log onto the site and click “Manage Cards” at the top of the screen. Scroll to “My Cards” and after you’ve created an account, begin adding your cards. You can transfer all of the cards (just this afternoon I transferred 18 cards) onto one and that’s it. Easy peasy. Simple and streamlined.
You can transfer up to $1000 on each card. And that hefty amount will come in handy, especially if you follow the tips below.
#2 The Target Red Card
The only reason I signed up for the Target Red Card was because of the 5% discount on Disney gift cards. (Well, all gift cards, actually, but I’m a little single minded that way.) I figure, if I’m going to Disney anyway, a great way to “save” for a trip is to buy a gift card each time I go to Target (which is more often than I’d like to admit). I get 5% off the card and I have a little bit of savings towards the next trip. Five dollars for every hundred doesn’t sound like a lot but when the average trip costs about $3000, that’s $150 of free money. I can do a lot with 150 bucks.
#3 Sam’s Club
Sam’s Club offers discounted Disney gift cards as well, with a savings of approximately 5%. If you already have a membership and do most of your bulk shopping there anyway, buying Disney gift cards every other trip or so (they come in packs of 3 – $50 cards) is a great way to save.
I’ve also heard that BJ’s (another popular discount warehouse) has Disney gift cards. I can’t confirm this because we don’t have BJ’s in our region, but check your local stores. You might get lucky.
And just like you did with your birthday and Christmas gift cards, simply go to the “manage” section of the Disney Gift card site, add you newly purchased Target, Sam’s Club and BJ’s cards to your main card. Once you hit $1000, start another one. When the deposit is due for your trip, you’re good to go.
#4 Disney Vacation Account
The Disney Vacation Account is another way to save and get up to 2% back on your money. It’s a free and easy way to save for your next Disney vacation. Go to the site to open your account. It’ll walk you through the process of budgeting, planning and saving. It will even track your progress and offer timeline suggestions. You’ll receive another $20 gift card for every $1000 you “spend” towards paying off your vacation. And if you’re using your birthday, holiday and discounted gift cards, this will be more “free” money in your pocket. Of course, you have to spend the money at Disney but who can’t use another set of Mickey Ears or stuffed Pluto?
Whether it’s your in-laws or Target or Disney, free money is free money. And free money ALWAYS goes into our Disney vacation jar!