‘Travel for Less’ Category Archives


Travel for Less – Disney World

by Ziva Beck in Travel for Less

Disney World is frequently rated as a top family destination. It offers great entertainment, dining and many accommodation options. I was looking for a place to celebrate a special occasion with my family. A place that was warm in February, a short flight away from home and had excellent entertainment for the whole family. Disney offered everything I was looking for!

Now it was time to plan all the details and make reservations for the trip.

Finding a Flight

My favorite airlines for domestic travel flying out of Newark, New Jersey, are JetBlue and Continental. I usually check the prices on their website first to get an idea of price and flight times. Then, I check sites like Kayak, Expedia and CheapOair. Kayak has a convenient format to search multiple airlines, multiple airports and flexible dates. CheapOair allows booking roundtrip on different airlines and that sometimes can result in a lower price or more convenient flight times. Expedia offers good flight and hotel package options. Usually, you can get a better price if your travel dates are flexible and you are traveling mid-week. JetBlue offers free first bag check so I like them more than Continental. We used Expedia to book our flight and accommodations and CheapOair to book additional flight tickets.

Finding Accommodations

Orlando has an abundance of accommodation options ranging from budget to very luxurious. For family travel, I like condo style accommodations. It provides more space than a hotel and also kitchen facilities for cooking. Expedia is a good starting point to look for accommodations and Trip Advisor provides travelers reviews that provide additional insight. I chose the 2 bedroom condo at the Diamond Polynesian Isles in Kissimmee, Florida. They rated  #2 out of 172 hotels in Kissimmee on Trip Advisor. That was a good recommendation for me. I loved their outdoor heated pool, free wi-fi in the room, spacious accommodations and Jacuzzi in the master bathroom. They are also conveniently located to Disney World and Universal Studios. What a great option for a family for a price around $100 per night!

Renting a Car

The least expensive option was to book through Hotwire. I started planning several months in advance but found that booking 2-3 weeks in advance resulted in a better price. So I decided to wait and booked 3 weeks before the trip. The car rental was with Alamo and they offered an upgrade at the counter. To our surprise we were able to negotiate the price of the upgrade to a much lower price than their initial offer.

Buying Disney World Tickets

Disney World tickets are expensive. The price ranges from $85 per day for 1 day ticket to $38.14 per day for 7 day ticket. The local AAA office might offer additional discount on multiple day passes. Another option to save on tickets is to attend a timeshare presentation in return to significantly discounted tickets. There are signs for discounted tickets almost everywhere in the Kissimmee area and many resorts, including the one we stayed in, offer this option. You can decide if it is worthwhile to exchange 1-2 hours of your time for the discount offered. This is only an option if you know you can resist the pressure to buy a timeshare.

The Internet and websites like Kayak, Expedia and Trip Advisor completely changed how we plan our vacations. There are many choices and reservations are only a few clicks away. Vacation planning can be time consuming but also fun and you can save some money in the process. Our trip was a great success. Disney delivered its magic once more.



http://www.kayak.com/ – Kayak website

http://www.cheapoair.com/ – CheapOair website

http://www.expedia.com/ – Expedia website

http://www.hotwire.com/car/index.jsp – Hotwire car rental

http://www.tripadvisor.com/Hotel_Review-g34352-d88560-Reviews-Diamond_Polynesian_Isles-Kissimmee_Florida.html – Trip Advisor Review for Diamond Polynesian Isles in Kissimmee, Florida