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Disneyland on a Budget!

We recently took our three kids to Disneyland! Full disclosure- we went while they were ALL under the age of 3. Adalynn and Carter are 11.5 months apart, so there is a magic 11 days when they are both two years old! We have been planning to take them during that time frame for over a year! Why? Because they are both free! As soon as your little one hits 3, they need a ticket to get into the parks. So when I share our total cost below, please keep in mind that we only had to pay for 2 adults!

*This post contains affiliate links. You can read my full disclosure by clicking policies at the bottom of this page*

So before we left, we created a budget for our trip and took out cash. Our goal was to not need our debit cards at all so that way we knew we wouldn't over spend! I will share later if we stayed on budget! But first, let me share with you guys what we did to keep the costs down at arguably the most expensive place ever!

1. Bring your own drinks!!

Drinks at the park are insane! I'm talking $4 for one bottle of water! We filled up a thermos full of ice for each person, and were able to refill it multiple times using various drinking fountains! We also stuffed a couple gatorades and apple juices in our snack bag underneath the stroller! Which brings me too...

2. Bring a snack bag!

Get a backpack or small cooler and fill that up with snacks/drinks! I love this collapsable cooler! Our plan was to only eat 1 meal a day in the park! So if that was breakfast, then we made sure to bring PB&J sandwiches that day! We actually did the Minnie Mouse and friends breakfast twice and then ate out of our snack bag the rest of the day! (With the occasional corn dog or churro purchase!) If you are going in the summer, make sure you don't put any snacks that can melt in your bag! You don't want to accidentally have a mess in your snack bag and messy snacks just means your kids are going to get messy! Our favorite snacks that we brought with us are; crackers, applesauce, fruit snacks, granola bars, fruit bars, Cheetos, pretzels, and almonds!

3. Stay away from the Disney hotels!

We stayed at Grand Legacy at the Park. It was nice and SO close to the entrance to the park! They have a great pool and kids splash pad area! There are also multiple restaurants around so you don't have to eat in the park for every meal!

4. Buy those ears before you go!

Ears at the park will take up a good chunk of your money! If you are looking to save money, etsy has so many cute options for half the cost!

You can save $27 per ticket using Undercover tourist!

6. Bring your own light up toys

At night when all the kids want $20 light up toys because they see everyone has one, you will be glad you brought your $8 light up toy from Amazon. Here are just a few;

7. Make or buy your own autograph book!

Our kids weren't old enough to really be interested in these, but if they were you can buy or make a cheaper book before you go!

8. Consider the photo max pass.

If you are going to be there multiple days, consider the photo pass. You can get access to any photo they take in the parks for only $80. Instead of individually buying pictures or paying $28 for the photo package at the character breakfast. It definitely will save you money in the long run!

Okay! So now for the part you all probably want to read- what we actually spent... We were at Disneyland for 3 days, (4 nights) and here is what we spent!

Hotel: $614.00

Disneyland tickets: $710.00

Gas: $160 Cash for food/souvenirs/anything else: $600.00

total trip cost for 3 days at Disney: $2084

There are definitely ways to do Disneyland cheaper then that! When we travel we like to experience it all so we definitely spent money on our fair share of churros, dole whips, and corn dogs! We also accidentally left the light up toys we bought at home so we ended up caving and buying them each one at the park!

Do you have any money saving tips for heading to Disneyland?


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