We’ve tenatively planned two WDW vacations in the last 18 months, both have been impossible.
Well, I called WDW today and got a quote that I didn’t think was possible with a family of 6, 5 of whom will be “adults” at the time of the trip. I’ve got 24 hrs. to make the deposit. DH says “go for it” but it would pretty much mean nothing other then food, shelter and electricity for the next 2 months. :crying:
But here’s my question:
Has anyone stayed at All Star Music Suites? I didn’t even know they had suites.
Also, I could use some of Dana’s magical budgeting tips 'cause if we’re going to go in January, I need to save big time 'cause the trip needs to be paid by Nov. 30th.
I have not stayed in one, but I have been in one. They are nicely done, but it is a bit cheaper to stay in two standard rooms at a value resort, so keep that in mind. You can see more on the family suites here:
Of course “go for it”. When you come right down to it what more do you need other than food, shelter and electricity? In fact - you can make saving FUN - (oh, yes you can, all you need is a good attitude).
First off: What is your food budget for a week? Whatever it is, make it a goal to spend $10.00 LESS - you can do it. There’s nothing wrong with soup and hot dogs for dinner. (If you have a fireplace, stick the weiners on sticks, voila weiner roast.)
Watch a different Disney movie every Saturday night instead of going out or renting movies. Pop some corn - popcorn’s cheap.
It’s Fall, it’s beautiful. Go for a walk instead of going to the mall. Good exercise and it’ll get your legs in shape for WDW.
Before you buy anything ask yourself: Can I live without it? 99.9% of the time you can. Use your library card instead of buying books or magazines.
NO TAKE OUT FOOD!
If the kids complain, remind them that your “saving for Disney”. How many of their friends are going to Disney?
Put all your change in a jar at the end of every day. Every penny counts.
But really, your advice is good. I’ve recently put myself on a budget - not for a vacation, but to get credt cards paid off by January. Once I get these paid off, then I can think about vacations.:laugh:
I’ve had sandwiches, salads, and grilled chicken breasts for days now. I’ve recently made 2 large pots of soup that I can use as lunch at work. And I’ve limited myself to only 1 mocha per week. :crying: But it’s working.
I always use the grocery budget because I can relate to it. When I had two babies, my husband decided to start his own business - we didn’t have any money for a long time - and as I couldn’t go out to work, the way I saved money was re-assessing my food budget.
It’s amazing the amount of money we spend on unnecessary food items. I still don’t buy any frozen dinners and stuff like that. My best advice -learn how to make soup.:laugh: We lived on a lot of homemade soup for a long time.:laugh:
If you look at your income for the next 8 weeks and see that the money is there in places that can be cut go for it. We waste a lot of money eating out and on stuff we really don’t need like soda at work. Our food budget (that we really don’t have) is another area where I could cut big time. I could change where I shop and what I buy and I know I could save at least $100 each month. If I cut out all the extras I would have a nice little vacation fund, I don’t think I could pay for a Disney vacation in 8 weeks but I would have a nice start.
I’ve not stayed in a suite at the values but how bad can it be–you’re at WDW and that’s what’s important.
Hey, sbd…I am the QUEEN of existing on a really, really modest food budget. I am not all that into cooking, so nothing I do is a lot of work, either. I’m not saying there aren’t sacrifices involved… but it can be done! I’d be happy to pass on some menus if you decide to try to cut your budget that way. PM me!
Well, it’s not the whole vacation really, just what WDW wants. I was sitting her thinking about our “extras” today and OH MAN ~ I spent almost $300 alone on scrapbook supplies over the last month!!! (never seemed like much, but $30 here, $15 there adds up!)
You’ve been pm’d…thanks so much for the offer! I can use all the help I can get!!
LOL Since I can’t scrapbook that would be so easy for me to cut out. :laugh: I would have a hard time cutting out our Friday night get togethers. We have snacks, drinks, and dinner with friends almost every Friday night and we spend at least $50 every week on just that. Funny how much money we spend on the extras that make life more fun.
It’s amazing when you think about it - my downfall is magazines. I once added it up and I spent about $50.00 a month on magazines. It almost just becomes a habit - you buy it without thinking. That’s $50. that could go into a Disney fund - $600.00 a year. That’s almost 2 annual passes.
Budgeting for me is difficult. I’m a big cooker and baker. That’s when I’m happy - in the kitchen preparing something, even if it’s not for me. For the longest time, I’ve been feeding myself, G, and a number of the single guys at the Police Dept. I’ve even prepared meals and treats and taken them to the Station for G’s department to eat during the work hours. I’m a food snob and prefer fresh, organic fruits and veggies, and meat from the butcher.:laugh: So of course, they’re more expensive.
I’ve really had to sit down and examine everything I buy during a 1-2 week period, and judge from that. Like I said, my mochas (and other coffees) have been cut down to 1 per week. (I purchase 2 different mocha mixer things to use during the other days.) My only real necessities that I’m buying right now are small lunch items, gas, and bills. I hate not spoiling myself.:glare: But I figure it’s worth it, once my extra (unnecessary) bills are gone and I actually take a vacation somewhere and not worry.
“Food, shelter and electricity for the next 2 months” is not someplace you want to be. I am currently dealing with a man who spends money for the instant at the expense of the future. He actually had his mini-van repo’d with only ONE payment left, because he had an unexpected bill come up, and he couldn’t make both of them.
There is another option that might work better for you–stay offsite. You can priceline.com a room for under $30/night, and food outside the parks would be way cheaper than the dining plan can offer.
I know! I know! You lose some of the magic. But what is that compared to an emergency home repair? Or a car breaking down? Or some other urgent, unexpected expense.
Lil’ and I put money into a vacation account every month. We don’t even look to book a trip until we have enough saved to justify it. I LOVE WDW, but vacations can’t override fiscal responsibility.
We don’t have many more bills a month then what I mention ~ thankfully, we have NO CREDIT CARDS ~ hence no debt ~ but it also makes it difficult because we pay EVERYTHING in cash. We’ve got one small car payment, cable and cell phones, work travel exp. and that’s about it.
(holding up my right hand…) I promise that we will be paying all our bills as usually. I know we have the money for the trip, it’s just that all the extras: new video games for stu, scrap stuff for me, take out 4 times a week, poker tourney buy ins, my shoe addiction, etc. that we have to give up.
I can also pick up an extra shift or two at the diner.
Finally, since we are driving down and have no set date that we have to go, should we find that as NOV. 30th is getting closer and we just can’t do it, we can always reschedual.
This is the only trip that we have really “streched” the budget and it’s really more than we “should” spend, but it’s our honeymoon and we only plan on having one.
That being said, I cut corners all the time…my best tip is we ONLY use the debit card and I always round up
I spend $15.76 at Target in my checkbook I write $16.00
At the end of the month I compare my actualy balance online and my checkbook balance and I transfer the difference to my savings…it really saves about an average of $50 a month!
It’s not going to pay for your entire trip–but it is sort of like “free money!”