9 Secret Tips for Making the Most of Your Disney Park Visit on a Budget

By: Ene Ayegba | Last updated: Nov 17, 2023

Disneyland has been unofficially deemed “the happiest place on Earth.” The positive atmosphere in the park stimulates joy and provides entertainment, fun, and an escape from the real world.

To get the most from your experience, you have to prepare for the trip. These carefully-curated Disney park tips will guide you.

The Best Time to Book: Off-Season

Disney parks are usually busy during holidays or when kids are on school breaks. When kids are off school, many parents take them to the park to keep them busy and entertained. So, if you want to make the most of your trip and enjoy as many rides as possible, just book off-season.


Source: LaJollaMom/Pinterest

According to a member of Disney’s former staff, the last days of January, the last days of September, and the week before Thanksgiving and Halloween are off-season.

The runDisney Race

Besides the thrilling roller coasters and other beloved rides, Disney also holds unique events like short runs and full marathons. An example is the runDisney race. Another way to avoid long queues and the large crowd is to visit the park during these racing days.


Source: Edythe/Pinterest

You can participate in the event if you want to—but if not, the empty park is open for you to enjoy.

On a Budget? No Problem!

You might think the cost of tickets and accommodation in the park is a little too much, but fear not—there’s a solution. Disney promotes the use of company gift cards. You can get them as a gift from family and friends or buy them yourself for the trip.


Source: Dmitreeva/Pinterest

This way, you won’t have to worry about the cost and will still have cash for merchandise, snacks, and other reservations.

Start Your Fun At the Back of the Park

The normal route is to enter the park and start the action from the first set of rides. However, Disney staff has let us in on a little secret—start from the back of the park.


Source: LoveandOliveoil/Pinterest

Since almost everyone is queuing up for rides at the front, there will be less lines at the end of the park. This way, when you’re done with the far-back rides, there will be fewer crowds by the time you move forward.

Avoid Regular Meal Times

When people start dispersing to eat, you’ll get quicker access to rides. During regular meal times, there are usually shorter queues for rides.

Source: TheBucketListNarratives/Pinterest

However, when people are riding, and the lines look like they will never end, you should go for your meal. Another advantage is the higher chance of getting restaurant reservations during those odd hours.


Take a Sharpie Along

One of the highlights for your children at Disney parks is seeing your favorite characters and getting their autographs. In which case, you want to be ready to get them.

Source: Flickr/Pinterest

Several staffers explained some characters have their vision blurred by their costumes. Therefore, using a normal pen would be tricky. When you give them a sharpie, it will help them see their John Hancock better, and you will have a more legible signature. It’s a win-win!


Be Prepared for Poor Weather Conditions

If you are a Disney fan, you likely know some Disney songs with the words “be prepared.” The words can also be life advice. In this case, you have to be prepared for Florida weather.

Source: MikeBelobradic/Pinterest

The weather in Florida can be very unpredictable. It can go from super sunny to heavy downpour in a matter of minutes. Be prepared by packing your sunscreen, an umbrella, a raincoat, and other things you might need.


Anticipate Cost-Friendly Deals

To reduce the cost of your vacation in Disney, you can check for deals. Like every other business out there, the park would like to beat their competitors in hospitality in order to have more customers. Disney usually offers some type of discount tickets for accommodation and food.

Source: TripSavvy/Pinterest

The park’s busy periods are no exception. Disney offers lots of deals for various people—all you have to do is look for them.


Avoid the Afternoon Parade

The Disney Festival of Fantasy Parade is a must-see. You can actually watch your favorite Disney characters walk by, waving and smiling at you—it happens every day at 3 pm.

Source: JennyBoothroyd/Pinterest

So, skip the parade, and while everyone else is watching, you can make the most out of the near-empty and quiet park. There’ll be a shorter queue, and you’ll reach the front of the line faster.