Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Disney on the Cheap and Chill Out!

Okay, I know there's probably a lot of Disneyland budget pros out there reading this. I don't necessarily claim to be an aficionado but we just got back and I have a few tips for your next visit. No suprise, most of my tips are about food! Enjoy!

Before you leave buy some "supplies" at Target, Wal-mart or the Dollar Store. Disney themed notepad for character autographs (don't get one too small though - those poor characters have a hard enough time writing with those gigantic hands of theirs). Disney t-shirts. Bring an extra to the park. When your 4 year old unexpectantly pukes on one you have a back-up - without spending 17.95. Obviously a lesson learned this trip!

Try to stay somewhere that has a breakfast included in your rate. You will save a lot of money by stuffing yourself and your kids before you hit the park! Our hotel had (cold-yuck) hard boiled eggs which I successfully heated up by placing them in a cup of HOT water. We also added some protein by bringing some nuts to breakfast and adding them to oatmeal or cereal. We stayed at the Best Western Raffles in a suite that had a "kids bunk-room". I HIGHLY recommend staying at a hotel with a little extra room. I loved having some space at the end of the day in my own room!

Do not hesitate to bring a little cooler with snack/lite lunch items. Disney does not care. You don't need to sneak it in. They get it. Kids (and hungry, tired Mommys) need snacks! I made my kids eat PB&J's, dried fruit, nuts, protein bars and crackers and then when we did have to order a meal, the damage was much less than it would have been.

Bring your resuable water bottles and fill them up at the park. Besides the Baby Center on Main Street, there are a few locations around the park where you can get filtered water. Here the are:

1. ★The Plaza Pavillion restaurant on the west side of Main Street
2. ★The French Market in New Orleans Square
3. ★Rancho del Zocalo in the dining courtyard in Frontierland
4. ★Tomorrowland Terrace to the left of the order windows"

Indulge in one treat a day! Hey, you're in Disneyland! Where else can you get a Chocolate and Caramel covered Marshmallow "Tigger Tail" or a Cheesy Jalepeno filled Pretzel?

When your feet are killing you from standing in line or you just need a little down time...and your don't happen to be staying at the Grand Californian ;-), here's a few little relaxing things to do:

Go see the Aladdin Show at the Hyperion Theatre in California Adventure (hint: get there early enough to sit in the Orchestra section and sit either on the far right or left - you get special attention at one point in the show).

Ride the Monorail around the Park once...or twice if you REALLY need a break and you beg the attendant to let you. It's nice and quiet in there and my mom and I managed to sneak our coffees in.

As you enter Disneyland, just past the right tunnel is the Disney Gallery. Take a stroll through the gallery to view original concept drawings and other amazing artwork and then on to the Main Street Opera House next door which houses the Disneyland Story featuring Great Moments with Mr. Lincoln and the cool scale models of Disneyland and rides.

Okay, there's my two-cents worth. What do you have? Add your Disneyland thrifty or chill tips in comments please!


Anona said...

In California Adventure we like to go the Disney Animation building to relax. They have comfy couches to sit on and the kids can watch the giant TV's while you relax. Also inside there is Turtle Talk with Crush which is pretty funny and entertaining!

Jessica said...

Good tips! I don't have any good ones. Try not to spaz out about the crowds. Try to avoid the Princess area so you don't have to stand in the longest most torturous line ever. :-)

Kelly said...

Great tips, as we also stayed at a hotel with breakfast and extra room with a 1 bedroom suite and it was quite reasonable, wayyyyy back in 1998, was the last time I visited. They did not have the California Park yet, but if I ever go back, which I hope I can, I will need rest, even without the kids in tow...LOL!! I think using the pass they have, where you can go and make an appt. to actually get on the ride, so you don't need to stand in line, for so much time~~:)

bobby thomas said...

thank u for the tips