Disney World Vacation Package Discounts
LAST UPDATE: 2/28/14
During the off-season, Disney sometimes offers a discount on its vacation packages. At other times, no Disney World vacation package discounts may be available. Any discounted Disney vacation packages listed below are subject to availability and rates are PER PERSON, per night, usually for adult double occupancy, unless otherwise noted. Adult single occupancy (or one adult plus kids) usually carries a surcharge.
Most rooms are set up for 4 people. A few rooms can accommodate 5, mainly at the Deluxe Disney resorts. There are a few rooms with trundle beds at Port Orleans Riverside that can handle 5, but one will have to be small enough to sleep on the trundle; none of the other Moderate Disney resorts can accommodate 5. Standard rooms at Disney’s All Star resorts accommodate 4 people. Click here to learn more about the various resorts and room types.
Not sure which resort to pick for your Disney vacation package? Read about the various Disney resort types and my recommendations for the best values in each category.
- Is a Disney World Vacation Package For You?
- 2014 Vacation Packages
- My Value Recommendations
- Free Memory Maker Photo Package Offer
- Spring Vacation Package Offer
- Disney Visa Spring Vacation Package Offer
- Annual Passholder Packages with Dining Plan
- Bounceback Package Offer
- Package Promotions with Small World Vacations
- New!Discount Offer On Six Or More 4+ Day Tickets
- UK Packages
- Canadian Packages
- Southwest Vacations Packages
- Packages Through Expedia
- Packages Through Travelocity
- Membership Discounts
- Trip Insurance
A lot of people like Disney’s vacation packages because they are convenient and worry-free. However, it is important to note that the standard full-price Disney vacation packages are designed for convenience rather than savings. In most cases you will NOT automatically get a discount by purchasing a package! It is frequently cheaper to book a “room only” reservation (ideally with a discount) and then buy the package components (tickets, meals, etc) separately.
However, Disney sometimes offers special promotional package discounts, particularly in the off-season. You have to know the special discount codes, which I list here when available.
Disney World packages have rules about advance payment, cancellations and changes that are usually much more restrictive than those associated with “room only” reservations. If you’re not sure about whether to buy a package vs. just booking your room and tickets separately, click here for information that should help you decide.
It can be difficult to sort out what is best for your particular situation. That’s why I think it’s a good idea to have someone knowledgable on your side, making sure all the details are covered. My advice is this: if you want to book a Walt Disney World vacation package, I strongly recommend using a travel agent who specializes in Disney travel. It costs you nothing, and you can sit back, relax, and have all the vacation planning and hassle taken care of by someone else.
For 2014, the seasonal pricing of dining packages has been eliminated, and prices for the Quick Service Dining Plan, regular Dining Plan or Deluxe Dining Plan are the same as those that were rolled out in June 2013. Prices for the Premium Plan and Platinum Plan have gone up $5 per person per day.
All 2014 packages now have a “spa or salon” discount (previously the discount applied only to spa — now it includes salon). The Planet Hollywood voucher has been reduced to $10 from $15.
For the Premium Plan, a Richard Petty Junior Ride-Along Experience is now included for one child. For the Platinum Plan, a Richard Petty Junior Ride-Along Experience is now included for one child, a Characters in Flight experience has been added, and facials are now included as an option for the spa treatment. However, the PhotoPass CD and the Fantasmic! show seating have been eliminated from the Platinum Plan.
For 2014, you can choose from the following Magic Your Way package options:
- Disney’s Magic Your Way Package - The base package helps you experience the magic of a Walt Disney World vacation at an affordable rate. The package includes accommodations at a Disney-owned-and-operated resort hotel, and Magic Your Way base tickets for everyone in the group.
- Disney’s Magic Your Way Package Plus Quick Service Dining Plan - This package includes everything from the Disney’s Magic Your Way Package, and adds a dining plan that includes two quick service meals and one snack per person, per package night, plus a resort refillable mug per person. You can choose from dozens of counter service restaurants across the Walt Disney World Resort.
- Disney’s Magic Your Way Package Plus Dining Plan - This package includes everything from the Disney’s Magic Your Way Package, and adds a dining plan that includes two meals (one table service, one quick service) and a snack per person, per package night at more than 100 restaurants across the Walt Disney World Resort. This plan also includes a resort refillable mug per person.
- Disney’s Magic Your Way Package Plus Deluxe Dining Plan - This package includes everything from the Disney’s Magic Your Way Package, and adds a dining plan that includes three meals and two snacks per person, per package night at more than 100 restaurants across the Walt Disney World Resort. Unlike the regular Dining Plan, lunch and dinner on this plan include an appetizer. This plan also includes a resort refillable mug per person.
- Disney’s Magic Your Way Premium Package - This deluxe package includes everything from Disney’s Magic Your Way Package as well as breakfast, lunch, dinner and two snacks each day, along with other exciting options like recreation, theme park tours, admission to the Cirque du Soleil show La Nouba and more.
- Disney’s Magic Your Way Platinum Package - In addition to your hotel room and tickets, this “ultimate luxury” plan includes breakfast, lunch, dinner and two snacks each day, unlimited recreation, unlimited select tours, one selected spa treatment, tickets for Cirque du Soleil La Nouba, unlimited child care in the resort Child Activity Centers, in-room child care, Fireworks Cruise, itinerary planning and more.
- Walt Disney World Annual Passholder Package with Dining - Walt Disney World Annual Passholders can purchase a special vacation package that includes either the Quick Service Dining Plan, the standard Dining Plan or the Deluxe Dining Plan. The Dining Plans are not discounted with this package. The room rate on the Annual Passholder Package is not always discounted, but during certain times of year, a discount may be offered. This package does not include admission tickets, since obviously Annual Passholders don’t need that component of a vacation package.
Thanks to Small World Vacations for info.
The first thing you need to bear in mind is that Disney REALLY wants you to stay for at least 5 nights/6 days. For that reason, the Magic Your Way tickets included in your package are heavily discounted on longer (5 to 7 day) stays. Remember that tickets are usually the biggest single expense in your package, and 7 day tickets cost only a little more than 4 day tickets. So live it up — price out the longer vacation and you’ll probably be surprised how little the extra cost will be.
For most people who buy a vacation package, the plain Magic Your Way Package (no dining) or the Magic Your Way Package Plus Dining will be the best value.
There is a daily, per-person cost to add the regular Dining Plan to a basic package (click here to see the 2014 costs). With the regular Dining Plan you’ll get a full service meal, a counter service meal and a snack each day.
The Dining Plan is very marginal in terms of value. It’s possible to save a little vs. paying cash, but only if you use all of the included benefits, carefully plan out each meal in advance and order only the most expensive items on the menu. Otherwise at best it’s a break-even proposition. Adding the Dining Plan to your package does allow you to prepay your vacation expenses (except for tips), which for some people is relaxing. To read more about the pros and cons of the Dining Plan, click here to see my review.
If your family isn’t into table-service dining, there is the Magic Your Way Package Plus Quick Service Dining. The Quick Service Dining Plan is not a good value. You will be lucky to break even vs. just paying cash for your meals and snacks, and the Quick Service Dining Plan is not particularly flexible. I don’t recommend it.
The higher level packages (Deluxe Dining Plan, Premium Plan and Platinum Plan) are really luxurious, but for the average family they are also serious overkill. First of all, eating the included three full meals a day is just too much for most people. But if you’re like me, you’ll feel compelled to eat all those darn meals, because you’re paying for them!
The Premium and Platinum packages also include lots of unlimited extras like recreation (i.e. boating, fishing, parasailing) and behind-the-scenes tours, which sound great — until you factor in the hot and humid Florida weather and the extensive walking, which slow most people’s energy level to a crawl by the end of the day. The reality is, it’s highly unlikely that you will take a tour in the morning, play tennis in the afternoon and attend a Cirque du Soleil show in the evening, on top of visiting the theme parks. But to get your money’s worth out of the Premium and Platinum packages, you really need to be taking advantage of such “extras” every day.
With this offer, get a room discount of up to 25% off the rack rate at select Disney resorts, plus a FREE Memory Maker Photo Package* when you purchase a Magic Your Way package for at least 3 nights, including at least a 2-day Base Ticket. Valid for stays 4/27/14 – 6/15/14 and 8/15/14 – 9/30/14.
- Value Resorts: get up to 10% off
- Moderate Resorts: get up to 15% off
- Deluxe and Deluxe Villa Resorts: get up to 25% off
*Offer excludes Port Orleans – French Quarter, Little Mermaid rooms at Art of Animation Resort, Villas at Grand Floridian, campsites and 3-bedroom villas. As with all Disney promotional discounts, some resorts, room types and date combinations will not be available. Length of stay requirements may apply. Savings based on the non-discounted price for the same room. Additional per adult charges apply if more than two adults per room at Disney Value, Moderate and Deluxe Resorts. Advance reservations required. No group rates or other discounts apply. Everyone in the same room must be on the same package. Theme park tickets must be used within 14 days of first use.
Book by 4/20/14.
Thanks to Small World Vacations for info.
- To book the Free Memory Maker Photo Package Offer, please contact a travel agent who specializes in Disney vacations, and request this offer. Small World Vacations gives you full service, including a personal travel agent you can contact by phone toll-free, and best of all, it costs you nothing to use them!
With this offer, get a room discount of up to 30% off the rack rate at select Disney resorts* for stays 2/24/14 – 3/5/14, 3/14/14 – 4/12/14 and 4/20/14 – 6/15/14. Upgrade to a room and ticket package and get one more ticket day FREE! (Minimum 4-day Magic Your Way ticket required.)
Value Resorts – get up to 20% off, with the following exceptions:
- All-Star Movies Resort – get up to 5% off
- Art of Animation Family Suites – get up to 15% off
Moderate Resorts – get up to 25% off, with the following exceptions:
- Port Orleans Resort – French Quarter – get up to 5% off
- Coronado Springs Resort – get up to 5% off
Deluxe Resorts – get up to 30% off, with the following exceptions:
- Deluxe Suites – get up to 5% off
- Animal Kingdom Lodge Club Level – get up to 20% off
- Animal Kingdom Lodge Savanna View – get up to 20% off
- Contemporary Resort – get up to 20% off
- Grand Floridian Resort – get up to 20% off
- Wilderness Lodge Club Level & Courtyard View - get up to 20% off
Deluxe Villa Resorts
- Animal Kingdom Villas – Jambo House – get up to 20% off
- Animal Kingdom Villas – Kidani House – get up to 20% off
- Bay Lake Tower – get up to 5% off
- Beach Club Villas – get up to 20% off
- BoardWalk Villas – get up to 30% off
- Old Key West Resort – get up to 30% off
- Saratoga Springs Resort – get up to 30% off
- Villas at Wilderness Lodge – get up to 20% off
*Offer excludes Villas at Grand Floridian, Little Mermaid rooms at Art of Animation Resort, campsites and 3-bedroom villas. As with all Disney promotional discounts, some resorts, room types and date combinations will not be available. Length of stay requirements may apply. Savings based on the non-discounted price for the same room. Additional per adult charges apply if more than two adults per room at Disney Value, Moderate and Deluxe Resorts. Advance reservations required. No group rates or other discounts apply. Everyone in the same room must be on the same package. Theme park tickets must be used within 14 days of first use.
Book by 3/31/14.
Thanks to Small World Vacations for info.
- To book the Spring Vacation Package Offer, please contact a travel agent who specializes in Disney vacations, and request this offer. Small World Vacations gives you full service, including a personal travel agent you can contact by phone toll-free, and best of all, it costs you nothing to use them!
This offer for Disney’s Visa cardholders is identical to the regular Spring Vacation Package Offer, but became available for booking several days in advance of the general public offer.
Book by 3/31/14.
Thanks to Small World Vacations for info.
- To book the Disney Visa Spring Vacation Package Offer, please contact a travel agent who specializes in Disney vacations, and request this offer. You must make an immediate deposit using your Disney’s Visa card. Small World Vacations gives you full service, including a personal travel agent you can contact by phone toll-free, and best of all, it costs you nothing to use them!
Discounted Annual Passholder Packages with Dining are usually offered for any time period when Annual Passholder “room only” discounts are also available. There is a room discount, but the Dining Plans are priced at the regular rate. These bookings are subject to regular Walt Disney Travel Company package rules.
Thanks to Small World Vacations for info!
“Bounceback” vacation package offers are offers made by Disney ONLY to guests who are currently staying at one of the official Walt Disney World resorts. The idea is to encourage you to “bounce back” to Disney World by planning your next vacation right now. These offers are not always available and could end at any time.
When a bounceback vacation package offer is available, you may be able to book a discounted vacation package (accommodations plus at least a 1-day Base Ticket) for a stay on selected dates at a Walt Disney World resort. Not all dates are offered, and not all resorts and room types will be included.
To qualify, the reservation for your next vacation must be made before you check out, and there are no exceptions made. You must call the number provided (usually on a flyer in your room) and pay a $200 deposit when booking.
If you don’t get a bounceback offer on a flyer in your room, the resort TV channel may be showing this offer, or you may receive an email from Disney during your stay. You can also try asking the front desk and/or Housekeeping for a flyer. Last, you can try dialing x8844 from your room phone and asking them if there are any current offers.
Small World Vacations frequently offers nice Disney World vacation package promotions exclusively for MouseSavers Newsletter readers. Be sure to sign up for the FREE monthly email newsletter so you’ll hear about the latest offers!
Disney is offering a FREE extra day when you buy at least six Magic Your Way tickets of 4 days or longer. You can add Park Hopper and/or Water Park Fun & More, but all tickets must be the same type and number of days. You can mix adult and child tickets to get to six. Non-expiring tickets are not eligible. The longest ticket you can buy with this discount is a 9-day (which then becomes a 10-day). You must purchase by 6/14/14, but tickets can be used any time. Like any other Magic Your Way tickets they expire 14 days after the first use.
This discount will automatically be included with any specially discounted vacation package if you book at least 4-day tickets for at least six people. If your trip doesn’t qualify for any other discounted package and you have six people, ask your travel agent to book this special ticket discount as a package.
The Disney specialist travel agency I recommend, Small World Vacations, gladly works with clients around the globe. They have many clients from the UK and Ireland. Unfortunately they cannot book UK-specific offers, but sometimes the American offers are a better deal. It’s also worth noting that the US vacation package offers have much more advantageous cancellation and change policies than the UK holiday package offers.
- To book any Walt Disney World holiday offers that are specific to UK visitors, go to the UK Walt Disney Travel Company website.
- You can also check the UK Visitors page for current package offers that are specific to the UK.
Canadian residents can book the US offers listed above. The Disney specialist travel agency I recommend, Small World Vacations, gladly works with clients around the globe. They have many clients from Canada.
In addition, you can visit DisneyWorld.ca and click on the Special Offers tab to see any current deals specific to Canadians, but most of the time the offers are the same as those distributed in the US. Sometimes the Canadian offer will have a different discount code, but otherwise it will be identical to the US offer. If I learn of any specials for Canadians only, they are listed below. Small World Vacations can book most Canadian packages as long as you are traveling at least 45 days from the date of booking.
If you live in or near a city served by Southwest Airlines, you may be interested in checking Southwest Vacations for Disney packages that include airfare on Southwest. (Note that Southwest Vacations is not actually operated by the airline itself, but rather by a third party licensed by the airline.)
When Disney offers discounted packages, Southwest Vacations may offer those same packages, but with airfare added. Sometimes the deals are quite good, but be sure to check the cost of the airfare and/or tickets included with the package: sometimes either or both may be inflated. Do the math and don’t rely on marketing statements such as “3 days free” without checking the bottom line price. If you do your homework, you may find it’s cheaper to book discounted airfare directly with the airline and get your vacation package (room and tickets) elsewhere, such as through a Disney Specialist travel agent.
When discounted packages are offered by Disney, the same vacation package discounts that are offered through other travel agencies (and directly by Disney) are usually also available online through Expedia. The discounted rates are listed as “promotional rates” or are given special names such as “Magical Fall Rates.”
Be aware that Expedia sometimes makes it look as if you can book “room only” reservations at these special package rates, but you really can’t. Later in the ordering process you are forced to add on theme park tickets, which makes the purchase into a vacation package. Expedia does offer separate “room only” promotions.
Generally speaking you’re better off to book the corresponding discounted package through a Disney Specialist travel agent, because you’ll get better service, plus Expedia has rules and requirements that can be confusing. If you decide to use Expedia, be sure to read all the small print very carefully, and click on any “terms and conditions” links and read those.
When discounted packages are offered by Disney, the same vacation package discounts that are offered through other travel agencies (and directly by Disney) are usually also available online through Travelocity. The discounted rates are listed as “promotional rates” or are given special names such as “Magical Fall Rates.”
Generally speaking you’re better off to book the corresponding discounted package through a Disney Specialist travel agent, because you’ll get better service, plus Travelocity has rules and requirements that can be confusing. If you decide to use Travelocity, be sure to read all the small print very carefully, and click on any “terms and conditions” links and read those.
If you belong to AAA or Costco, it may be worthwhile to check their prices on vacation packages. However, don’t expect much service, and be aware that you may not get the best price in the long run. In my experience, the big membership organizations mostly employ “generalist” travel agents who often know little or nothing about Disney vacations and are frequently clueless about promotional packages and discount codes. You will usually have to do your own monitoring to make sure any better package offers that come out are applied to your booking. They almost never do this for you, unlike a Disney specialist agency.
Be aware that AAA offers a room discount that applies ONLY to full price packages. If a better promotional package comes out (and it frequently will), you can switch to the new promotion, but you lose the AAA discount. You can only pick one or the other.
It is especially important to buy trip insurance for a vacation package, because you have to pay the entire cost in advance and you won’t get a refund if you have to cancel right before your scheduled departure. With hundreds or even thousands of dollars at stake, it’s worth it to protect the investment.
It’s super-important to buy insurance if you will be visiting Walt Disney World on a package vacation during peak hurricane season (roughly the months of August and September). Don’t underestimate the potential of hurricanes to create major problems even in an inland location like Orlando. Walt Disney World was directly affected by two hurricanes in 2004 (Frances and Jeanne) and one in 2005 (Wilma). Two hotels located on Disney property (but not operated by Disney) were virtually destroyed by the 2004 storms; one didn’t reopen until 2010!
While Disney’s own resorts weathered the hurricanes very well, guests were stuck in their rooms for up to 36 hours and many had major travel problems because airports were closed. Disney did waive “no-show” fees for a few dates, but those whose trips began before the specified dates (but whose travel plans overlapped with the hurricane) or just afterward were out of luck. Many people had similar problems with their airfares. The airlines allowed highly restrictive changes for certain dates without extra fees, but many of those who had to reschedule could not work within the airlines’ narrow rules and just had to suck up the extra cost.
Perhaps the most important coverage included in a trip insurance policy is trip cancellation and interruption insurance, which can protect your investment if you have to cancel your vacation at the last minute (or come home early) due to illness or injury. Depending on the policy, you may be covered if you cancel for other reasons, such as jury duty, terrorism at your destination, or even unemployment.
Emergency medical coverage and medical evacuation insurance are very important if you become ill or injured during the trip. Otherwise you’re on your own as far as booking very expensive last-minute airfare to get home. And if you’re too ill to travel by commercial jet, you may have to pay for treatment in Florida (which your personal insurance may or may not cover) or for evacuation on a medically-equipped jet, which is incredibly expensive.
Delayed baggage insurance will help you pay for replacement clothing if the airline sends your suitcase to Timbuktu and you need something to wear in the meantime. Supplemental baggage insurance will pay a predetermined amount if an airline loses your luggage completely. (Some higher-end credit cards provide extra baggage insurance, so check with your card issuer before paying extra for this coverage.)
Disney sells trip insurance, but it’s expensive and it has major exclusions: it doesn’t cover pre-existing conditions or delays (even weather delays) on air travel you arrange yourself. (Air travel arranged through Disney is covered.) You can almost always get better insurance than Disney provides, and at better rates, by buying it elsewhere.
Be aware that in most cases, trip insurance will provide slightly less coverage (usually by adding exclusions on pre-existing conditions) unless you buy it within about 14 days of paying your DEPOSIT on the vacation package. So be sure to purchase it right away, once you’ve committed to the trip.
Where to Buy Trip Insurance
If you have kids under 18, consider using Allianz (formerly Access America) for your trip insurance. Kids are included FREE in the Classic Plan, which is a rare and valuable benefit. If you buy that policy within 14 days of making your first payment/deposit on the package, it will also cover pre-existing conditions, unlike Disney’s coverage.
If the Access America policy isn’t a good fit for you, a great place to comparison-shop for trip insurance is InsureMyTrip.com, where you can see side-by-side policy information and rates for major, reputable insurance companies. I have used InsureMyTrip.com myself to buy trip insurance for several trips. I saved a substantial amount and got much more comprehensive coverage than Disney’s policy would have provided.