Parks on a Penny: Top 5 Tips for Saving Money on Your Theme Park Vacation

Many people save up for years to be able to go to a major theme park—between airfare, hotels, and park tickets alone, thousands of dollars can easily be spent over a handful of days. For most people, a trip like this is a once in a lifetime event due to expenses, but this article is all about trying to help you save a little money, because every little bit counts.

  1. Use the Theme Park Center site to purchase your park tickets!

From Anaheim, San Diego, Orlando, and Tampa, our website has a variety of ticket offerings and discounts to help you save some money compared to purchasing tickets at the gate. The site makes it easy for you to select your package and buy your tickets and tells you upfront what you’ll be saving.

2. Bring your own snacks and drinks.

My suggestion is to bring your own water and snacks into the park to eat throughout the day and just having one big meal in the park for the day. If you’re staying in a hotel on park property, I also suggest bringing your own food and water to eat or snack on in your hotel room—snacks offered by the parks and hotels can be pretty pricey.

3. Shop around at the souvenir shops in the area.

Merchandise in the parks can be expensive, especially since you probably won’t wear those rose gold Minnie ears again after your vacation is over. There are plenty of souvenir shops near the parks and they offer a huge selection of merchandise at lower prices. Be sure to check them out for all those mementos you promised friends and family back home.

4. Use travel comparison sites to book flights.

By using travel comparison sites you can be sure that you’re getting the cheapest flights and the best travel rates for your vacation. They’ll compare hundreds of sites and airlines and offer you a variety of prices and flights to choose from.

5. Take advantage of resort provided transportation.

Depending on where you’re staying, there may be free or cheap transportation provided for you to get to and from the airport, hotel, and parks. Check with the theme parks and the airports before booking to see what kind of transportation they provide for their guests.

Unfortunately, booking a vacation at a major theme park like Disney or Universal is expensive, without many ways to save money while in the parks. However, if you’re smart about booking your flight and tickets, and careful about spending on food and souvenirs, you could still save a few dollars during your trip. At the very least, set aside a specific savings amount to use during your trip that you’re not allowed to go over. This will help you keep track of your spending and ensure that you don’t spend more than you can afford. Above all though, remember to have fun and enjoy yourself!