Saving Money On Food & Drinks At WDW

I recently posted an article about how to save on park tickets for Walt Disney World.

Today, I am going to focus on cost savings on food and drinks.

Food and drink costs can sneak up on you as you are enjoying a beautiful, sunny, and often hot day at the parks.  But, with some advanced planning, you can cut costs and even set a budget for your park dining.

The first tip is one that will save you money, time and potential child melt-downs: Disney actually allows you to bring your own food and drinks into the parks.  They even allow small, soft-sided coolers.  You can pack a cooler before you leave your room in the morning with water, juice, and snacks you may need throughout the day. A bottle of water from a local convenience store is much cheaper than what Disney will charge you in the park.

If you bring a cooler to the park and you don’t want to carry it around all day, every Disney Park has lockers available for rent for a small fee.

If you have a car on the property, you can make a quick trip to a local store to stock up as well.  If you do not have a car, there are local grocery stores such as Garden Grocer or Orlando Grocery Express who will deliver supermarket items to your hotel room.

Every hotel room on Disney property now has at least a mini-refrigerator. Some deluxe rooms have a whole kitchenette. You can check what your room will have on Disney’s website before you go. This can also be handy for quick in-room breakfasts such as bagels or cereal. You can save time and hit the rides all that much sooner.

Another secret that many people don’t know at Disney World: you can go into any counter service restaurant and you can ask for a cup of ice water – at no charge.  This will help keep those water bottles filled all day.

Ask anyone who has visited the parks within the last few years and they will tell you that you don’t want to miss out on the food at Disney World.  There are restaurants that are some of the best in Florida and I highly recommend you don’t spend your whole trip eating PB&Js and frozen waffles.  In EPCOT alone you can eat food from 11 different countries.

One more tip to save some cash for those amazing meals: split the entree.  Order one or two dinners for your table and split them up among the group.  Also, there is no age limit for ordering a children’s meal.  At many locations throughout the parks, the kid’s meals are just smaller portions of a regular meal, so you’re not stuck with just chicken nuggets and fries.

What is your favorite money-saving dining tip for Disney? Share your experiences with us.

Consumer Expert Karen Costa

Hi! I am an avid Disney fan, love to travel and really love to help others plan trips and getaways. I have a husband and 2 active, sports-obsessed sons that keep me busy. I work for a large heath care company as a systems analyst by day, but dabble in writing in my spare time. I'm excited to share my Disney knowledge on News for Shoppers.