Saving Pennies for Walt Disney World!

Like most families, we are on a budget. When we go on vacation, there isn’t a lot of extra money for “extras”. We always go when there is a special promotion that is being offered. We usually get the Plus Dining meal plan and find that we save over $200 a trip on food using that. We love the snack credits. We usually get our Mickey Premium Ice Cream Bars using them. However, my kids want a new toy (or toys) “to remember” each trip by. Souvenirs can add up very fast and my kids want two of each and three of most toys. Does that sound like your kids?

So here is what my husband & I do. Our kids have to pay for their own toys! Some people might call that cruel but we call it a life lesson! Our children are 8 years old & 4 years old. Loose change in our house is theirs! They have to take it and place it in the piggy bank. Even the 4 year old knows that he is saving for his Disney toys. Of course we encourage our 8 year old to save birthday and tooth fairy money to use for herself.

About two weeks prior to leaving, we uncork the pig and count it up. Our 8 year old has to help us count and roll the coins. This last time, we saved our coins for 5 months. We rarely will spend our coins when paying with cash, so that helps a lot getting to the grand total. We are always surprised at how much it adds up to. When the last pig was counted, we had saved $73.50 plus we have a few coins leftover to help us start saving for next time.

What kind of things do our children pay for?

1. The Arcade

2. Extra Mickey Rice Crispy Treats

3. Hair Accessories

4. Plush Characters

5. Extra Trading Pins (We usually give them 20 to start that we purchase off of EBay)

6. Extra Vinylmations (We usually give them 3-4 to start)

7. Extra swords, daggers, hooks (If he already has one, we make him purchase the extras)

You might not think a 4 year old understands money but they quickly learn. Especially when it’s “All Gone”.

Another general rule that we have is they can’t purchase anything until day 3 or 4 of an 8 day trip. This gives our kids an opportunity to really find something that they will enjoy.

Thank you for stopping by Mouze Kateerz. We value feedback from our readers and welcome your comments.
Disney Vacations by Distinctive Journeys is ready to help you plan your next magical vacation. Please visit them at Disney Vacations by Distinctive Journeys or 404-414-6198 or



  1. Our kids know that our change is Disney money too. They get U.S. cash for their birthdays and Christmas or any occasion that they may get toys for, since we have more than enough toys in our house, we tell the grandparents too – either disney gift cards or U.S. cash. They know that is to be put away for disney. Even if they get Canadian cash, they want to save for disney, it is great! I don’t even have to nag them to save it anymore!

  2. My kids always ask for Disney gift cards or Disney dollars (which they started making again… yay!) for their birthdays. They save them for whenever our next trip may be. They usually end up with about $100 each to spend!

  3. We always make our kids wait until day 3 or 4 as well. However we have been burned, because they have seen something at a park, that can only be purchased at that park, and we aren’t going back to that park. That has lead to some tears, and/or an extra trip. Hard call to make.

  4. We do the same thing. When we went for my now 7 year old daughters 5th birthday, she had been saving for 2 years, all the loose change she found in the house and car, her birthday money, and toothfairy money. She ended up with $124 and bought everything she wanted plus was able to buy a few souveniers for her cousins back home! I think it’s a great lesson. We pay for the actual trip, there is no reason why she can’t help pay for the extra’s and she’s never complained once!! This time, it will be 4 years before we are able to go back, I wonder how much she’ll have saved by then!


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