Mickey and Minnie Mouse waving to the crowd at Disney World
/ / Disney World Cost Calculator: How Much Does Disney Cost?

Disney World Cost Calculator: How Much Does Disney Cost?

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Planning a trip to Disney World is exciting and fun, but there are many factors that go into the cost of your vacation. As you plan your itinerary for each day, make sure to consider how much it will cost for lodging, food, admission tickets and more! The Disney World Cost Calculator can help you estimate what funds you may need before booking your trip.

If you’ve ever wondered how much a Disney vacation costs or what your total trip cost will be before committing to the trip, this spreadsheet is for you. It lists all of the things that go into planning a Disney vacation and even has some great tips on how to save money!

Looking for a sample cost breakdown? There’s a chart at the bottom with samples prices for a family of 4 going to Disney World.

Download the Disney World Cost Calculator here or on one of the forms throughout this article.

Whether you are planning a budget 3-day stay or a luxury 7-night Disney vacation, this calculator is fully editable by you. Enter your estimated expenses and see your grand total at the bottom.

This Disney World Cost Calculator helps you recognize various expenses that may not be on your mind such as parking fees, resort fees, tolls and souvenirs.

The possibilities are endless. Save the calculator and use it to devise multiple budgets until you find one that suits your lifestyle and family.

What is a Disney World Cost Calculator

A Disney World Cost Calculator has been developed mainly for those who are looking to save a lot of time and explore the costs of a Disney Trip. The calculator is unique in that it details the estimated cost of different factors which make up the overall price. Some factors to consider when calculating the cost include hotel, ticket prices, food cost and admission to other parks.

How to use the calculator

The Disney World Cost Calculator is a great way for people planning a visit to Disney World to see what they should expect to spend on different expenses while visiting. The calculator breaks down a lot of factors that make up a given cost and gives visitors a good starting point with recommended budgets for their trip.

Let’s get to it by talking about the 5 main expenses of your Disney World vacation.

Hotels

Accommodations are another important factor that will affect how much money you must budget for your trip. There are several different Disney World Resort Properties for you to choose from, and each one offers different advantages and amenities.

Onsite Disney Resort benefits include items such as free park transportation, merchandise delivery to your hotel and early/late park admission.

On the other hand, offsite Disney hotels offer free hotel parking and some may give free breakfast to your entire traveling party.

Hyatt Regency Grand Cypress – offsite hotel

Remember to check if the hotel you are interested in has a nightly resort fee. These can add a couple of hundred dollars to your hotel bill quite easily. The Disney World Cost Calculator has space to input this as well as any hotel parking fees.

Currently, Disney World Resort hotels do not have a resort fee, but they do charge for parking.

Hotel expenses to consider:
  • Total hotel bill, including taxes
  • Nightly parking fees
  • Nightly resort fees

Transportation

Fly or Drive?

Obviously, if you only have a week and it takes you 20 hours to drive to Orlando, you are probably going to want to fly.

Look for a non-stop flight. With so many people traveling to Orlando, many discount carriers fly there at least a couple days a week.

However, remember to include seat assignments and bag check fees to your total. The Disney World Cost Calculator reminds you to do this. The price for adults and children is separate because I often only check one bag for my whole family.

Choose an airline such as Southwest if you want to avoid both of those fees. Often times, I have packed a suitcase full of snacks and breakfast foods when flying Southwest because there isn’t a charge to check a bag.

Getting to the Hotel

One important thing to keep in mind while considering how much money you need for your trip is that transportation to and from Disney World may not be included in your initial cost estimates. That means if you choose to fly into Orlando International Airport or Sanford International Airport, then you will need to budget for transportation costs each way from your hotel.

Starting in 2022, Disney World will no longer provide free transportation to your Disney Resort hotel via The Magical Express. This is one of the perks I am definitely going to miss.

However, Mears Connection will be providing bus transportation at $16 each way per person from Orlando International to many hotels. This could be a good option if there are only two of you traveling. With 3-5 people, you would be better off using Uber or Lyft.

You may also want to consider how much it will cost to travel within Disney World itself, as many of the park attractions are not accessible by walking.

If you stay at a Disney resort, parking your car at whichever resort property you choose during your stay may be an additional cost, but you will not have to worry about transportation within Disney World. You can take a bus straight from your resort property to the various theme parks, water parks or entertainment areas of your choosing.

On the other hand, if you stay at an offsite hotel, parking there may be free, but you will need to pay at the Disney Park (once per day even if you park hop – just keep your receipt).

The Disney World Cost Calculator has places to remind you to enter all these little details that you may not think of.

Driving to Disney

Of course, it may be cheaper for you to drive to Orlando rather than fly. There’s no car rental costs or transportation from the airport to your hotel to worry about.

Remember to include your gasoline costs whether you drive or rent a car. In addition, most people will incur toll charges on the way to Disney World, so add in some dollars for that as well.

Transportation expenses to consider:
  • Airfare, including seat assignment and bag fees
  • Airport transportation to/from hotel
  • Rental car
  • Parking fees (at the Disney Parks)
  • Gasoline
  • Tolls

Disney World Park Tickets

Ok, here’s a big one. This will be a huge chunk of your vacation bucket all rolled up into one line item: tickets.

Four Disney World RFID tickets - each are green with a different Disney character face - spread on a wooden table
Park tickets may be your biggest expense

How much do Disney World tickets cost?

The answer isn’t black and white.

Several factors come into play such as time of year, day of the week, how many days do you want to stay in the parks and if you are planning to park hop.

That’s a lot of options. Let’s try and break them down into manageable thoughts.

Time of Year

Disney World during the summer and over any holiday will be the most expensive times to visit. Of course, this is when kids are out of school.

The least expensive times to visit the Walt Disney World Resort is mid-January until President’s Day weekend and the month of September.

Disney Park days

How many days do you plan to spend in the parks? Some people plan to spend as much time in the parks that they can.

I don’t agree with that thought, however. If you are heading to Orlando for a weeklong stay, four park days, one in each park, is perfectly enough.

Use the other days to go to Disney Springs, enjoy your hotel pool, or plan a leisurely character meal somewhere at one of the Disney Resorts.

Most of the year, Orlando is hot and humid. Take this into consideration. You wil be exhausted not only from the heat, but also the crowds. When my daughter was younger, we always arrived at rope drop, but left by 4pm because it was just a tiring day and I wanted us all to have a good night’s sleep.

Disney World has a sliding ticket cost scale. The more days you plan to be in the park, the less per day the ticket cost is.  In addition, you need to enter the date of your first park visit. This sets the tone for how much your park tickets will cost.

Here’s an estimation graphic I created. It is as close to accurate as I could make it since I had to put in the number of park days, then look at Disney’s calendar for the cheapest and most expensive days. Use this to plug in the ticket amount in the Disney World Cost Calculator under the adult and child price.

Disney World 2022 ticket prices for both adults and children for use in the Disney World Cost Calculator
2022 Disney World pricing

Use the more expensive prices if you are traveling around a holiday. Likewise, use the lowest prices if you are going in mid-January or the end of August. For other dates, use somewhere in the middle.

Download the 2022 Disney World ticket prices graphic here for your own personal use.

To Park Hop….or Not

Honestly, in my 15-20 times at Walt Disney World, I have never bought a park-hopper ticket.

I just don’t see the need. It costs roughly $20-60 more PER DAY to park hop (depending how many days your ticket is for). Is it worth the expense? In my opinion, no.

First, you waste that time getting from park to park. Some, of course, are easier to get to than others, especially with the new gondola system.

And second, I’m usually too tired to continue walking all throughout the evening as we always arrive before the parks open.

It’s obviously your choice, but if you are looking to save any money at Disney World, this is an easy one to make. Just forgo the Disney park hopper option.

Did you download your Disney Cost Calculator yet? If not, fill out the form below!

Food

Mickey ice cream bars, gooey cinnamon rolls and the infamous Dole Whip all contribute to a higher food expense.

How many meals are you going to eat in the parks?  Is it going to be at counter service restaurants or sit-down ones?

Are you planning any character meals or special dinner reservations?

What about breakfast? Does your hotel include it or can you make it yourself?

So many choices when it comes to how much money to spend on food at Disney World!

The Disney World Cost Calculator tries to get you to think about many of these choices.

First, let’s think about eating inside the parks. Here’s a breakdown of what food and snacks inside Disney World costs.

Food costs inside Disney World

Counter service restaurants:

  • Adults $10-18
  • Children $7-12

Table service restaurants:

  • Adults $15-30
  • Children $10-20

Snacks: $5-10

Character meals:

  • Adults $35-70
  • Children $27-45

Specialty dining:

  • Adults $50-100
  • Children $30-50

As you can see,  nothing is cheap.

However, there are some ways to make it less expensive.

Does your hotel include free breakfast? Can you stop at a grocery store (Publix is a big one in Orlando) and pick up oatmeal, fruit, and granola bars to tide you over until lunch?

If you are staying at a condo or a timeshare (one of my favorite money-saving tips for any vacation), make a nice breakfast and pack snacks in your bag or even sandwiches. People do it all the time.

Disney snacks

I am guilty about splurging on this one.

I have a very sweet tooth and no self-control. So, when I see Mickey ice cream bars or Dole Whip, I usually say yes.

Popcorn buckets are our newest souvenir to take home. It’s pretty economical if you purchase one at the beginning of your stay. For $10, you get a Disney-themed bucket filled with popcorn, plus you can refill it as often as you want for $2 each time.

My latest Disney snack splurge, however, is the Wonderland Slush purchased at The Cheshire Cat near The Mad Tea Cups. The candy-coated straw is a unique idea!

LIttle girl in gray shirt and pink cooling towel around neck holding a purple and pink slushie with a candy coated straw
It’s as good as it looks! YUM!

Should you book a character meal?

If you are on a tight budget, I’m going to say no. They are quite expensive for what you get. For the most part, you are paying for the experience of seeing the characters close up.

That being said, we have been to several different character meals. Mostly breakfast because that is the least expensive.

Our family favorite has always been the ‘Ohana Character Breakfast at The Polynesian for its family-style breakfast offerings.

Ohana Character Breakfast picture with Stitch
Breakfast at ‘Ohana with Stitch

However, Akersus Royal Banquet Hall at Epcot gives you the chance to see several different princesses at once and the food is amazing.

Specialty dining

Looking for a romantic dinner? I’ve heard nothing but praise for Victoria & Alberts at The Grand Floridian.

Personally, I have never experienced such an expensive restaurant, but obviously, other people have!

If this is you, there is a line item in the Disney world Cost Calculator for this as well.

What about the Disney Dining plan?

Again, this is another expense that I just don’t feel is worth it. First of all, it’s very expensive on a per-day basis.

Second, it really is a lot of food.

I don’t think the Disney Dining Plan is worth it. It’s just a lot of money and too much food. It is easier and that’s probably the point. Especially if you pay for it in advance, then you don’t have to worry about paying for food in the parks.

There are special promotions from time to time where the dining plan is included in the cost of your room rate. These are often non-discounted rates and at the least busy times in the park.

Do the math if this is offered and see if it makes sense!

Food expenses to consider:
  • In park food
  • Non-park food
  • Groceries
  • Snacks
  • Character Meals
  • Specialty Dining

Miscellaneous

Ok, this expense line item is completely within your control. You don’t have to do any of the items on this list.

Let’s take a closer look at what’s in this category.

Souvenirs

Expect to be bombarded with your kids wanting everything they see.

Especially when you disembark from a ride that leads right into a gift shop. Yes, I’m looking at you Pirates of the Carribean and Space Mountain.

Disney merchandise is expensive, like all things Disney.

Determine your souvenir budget, if you have one, before heading out. Sticking to it will be even harder.

When the kids were small, we purchased Disney backpacks at Walmart before we left home and filled them with Disney pencils, pens, stickers, tattoos, chapstick, etc. It was a huge hit when we gave it to them. This lessened the continual need for wanting something at the park because they were already wearing their new Disney backpacks.

If you have a car, there are plenty of Disney gift shops off property. Stop in there and pick up a few inexpensive things such as t-shirts or water bottles.

Water Parks

Two Disney waterparks are within the resort: Blizzard Beach and Typhoon Lagoon. Disney transportation is provided to both.

These are a great way to cool down on a hot, humid Florida day.

Do you need to go to them? Definitely not. In my numerous visits to Orlando, we have only been to Blizzard Beach once. However, I am not a water or beach person, so maybe I am the odd person out.

Pay either individually for your day pass or look at one of the add-ons to your park pass. If you only intend to go once, it’s cheaper to buy the day pass.

Bibbidi-Bobbidi-Boutique

For my daughter, this was a one-time only event. She was about 5 when she was really into the princesses and couldn’t wait to be styled as one.

Package prices vary greatly and have both princess as well as prince makeovers.

As a side note, many Disney shops usually can sprinkle ‘pixie dust’ (glitter) on your children for free if they ask.

Miscellaneous items to consider:

  • Souvenirs
  • Water parks
  • Bibbidi-Bobbidi-Boutique

Tips for saving money on your Disney trip

There are many different ways to save money at Disney, and no matter how much you can afford, this Disney World Cost Calculator will help make your vacation as affordable as possible. Prices fluctuate daily (especially Walt Disney World prices), so if you see a deal you like today, book it before it’s too late!

 

It’s also important to compare prices and find discounts when booking hotels. Some accommodations offer great deals on rooms that include breakfast. Would this help your family cut down on costs? What about a free shuttle to the theme parks so you don’t have to pay for parking at Disney? Remember to add in all the little items to the cost of your stay to see the total amount you need to budget.

How much will your Disney World vacation cost? If you are planning a trip to the most magical place on earth, it’s important that you do some research into how much it will actually cost. The Disney world cost calculator lays out all of the expenses for having fun at Disney and provides an estimate of what they may be. If this is something that interests you, download our free Disney World cost calculator so you can get real pricing estimates for visiting Mickey Mouse!

How much does it cost to go to Disney World?

While no two vacations are the same, let’s break down what it would cost a family of 4 to go to Disney World at a mid-price point.

Conclusion

Disney World is expensive. If you want to go, then it’s worth doing your research and planning ahead of time so that you don’t end up with sticker shock when the bill comes due. The cost calculator can help estimate how much a trip will cost based on your travel plans. It also factors in hotel costs, food expenses, ticket prices for different days at various parks and souvenirs like pins or hats which are all part of what makes the “Disney experience” so special!


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