Let’s face it, Disneyland isn’t cheap! Park tickets are often the biggest expense, and there isn’t a large amount of flexibility in that. There are, however, some ways to save money on your trip. Here are our favorite ways to save money without losing any of the magic.
Plan your trip ahead of time
Disneyland area hotels tend to go up in price the closer you get to the date. Last-minute deals are rare, and are a risk you don’t want to take. Especially during popular times of the year (Marathon weekends, Holidays, Spring Break, Summer, October for Halloween, and Christmas time), we suggest booking at least 2-3 months in advance. For very popular times like Spring Break, Fall Break, and Christmas after December 15, we suggest checking with your planner up to 6 months in advance to get the lowest rate. When you work with The Pixie Planner, we will extend you any price drops after booking so you can never book too early.
Visit the park during a less-popular time of year
Disneyland is often busy, but there are times of the year that are less busy, and less busy means lower hotel costs. Generally, we find these are the best times to visit to avoid crowds and lower costs
Mid-January – Early March (excluding holiday and marathon weekends)
Late April – Early June (excluding holiday weekends)
Mid-August – Early October (excluding holiday weekends)
November 1- 15 (excluding marathon and holiday weekends)
For Christmas time, visit before December 15 for less crowds
If you are considering a 1-day trip, then visiting on a value day will save you the most. A peak-day will cost over $25 more per person! Your planner can help you find value days.
Be flexible in your accommodations
As with most other things, competition is key to saving money. If you have one hotel in mind, you are subject to the best deal we can find at that hotel. The Disneyland area has many amazing hotel options, and because there are so many options, the best deals can change depending on the dates. Be open to many options, and focus more on the quality of the hotel and features (such as location, free breakfast, or free shuttle to the park), rather than sticking to a specific brand. Sometimes, you can also save a little more by staying further from the park, but you will want to factor parking costs and gas into your cost. When you work with The Pixie Planner, we only suggest hotels we know and trust so you will know your hotel is a great choice.
Bring Your Own food, and Pick Quick Service Food
Disneyland will allow you to bring in your own snacks, and even a small picnic lunch. Hotels that offer kitchens, free breakfast, and sometimes, free dinner, can also help you save by spending less time eating at the park. Your Pixie Planner will also provide their favorite options for quick service meals, which will save you a lot over a sit-down dining option at the parks.
Skip the Disneyland Resort Properties
We love the Disneyland Resort hotels, but they are not the best bet when you are looking to save money. At $300-$700/night, they will add hundreds, if not thousands, to your overall travel budget. They have some great perks, but often, the nearby hotels are just as nice, with more perks (like free breakfast). They are also often just as easy to get to the park. Walking to the park from Disney’s Paradise Pier Hotel often takes just as long, if not longer than staying in a hotel across the street or with a reliable free shuttle. We love a good splurge trip, but for budget trips, skip this option.
Work with The Pixie Planner
Unlike traditional travel agents, our planners’ focus is on finding you the best deal for a vacation package that meets your needs. Our team will do a free quote, based on your specifics wants, needs, and budget. We will present you with many options to meet your needs.
We specialize in saving you money, and will be here every step of the way to ensure you know the best ways to save time and money in the parks!