How to budget a trip during a pandemic?

Twinkling

Earning My Ears
Joined
Sep 30, 2014
Next year is DH's and I's 5th year anniversary in early January, and the first and only time we've ever been to Disney World was for our honeymoon. We've talked at length about going back again to celebrate the Big 5, but with the parks shutting down and the financial strain of COVID-19, those plans have pretty much fallen to the wayside.

Still, a part of me can't help but want to at least try to see how plausible it would be for late 2021 trip, and I'd like to try to at least get a rough budget going to see what we're up against. Problem is, I'm not able to see the prices on anything because Disney isn't taking reservations or selling tickets! Since we've only been there once, so I have no idea how much their budget hotels run a night, what general ticket prices are like, or anything else! Does the Magical Express cost extra? How much is the meal plan? We live in California, so Disneyland is what we're used to, and we never stay at Disney hotels and always cut costs since we go so often.

I feel like this is probably a dense question, but where else can someone go aside from the Disney website in order to get prices on things? Like I said, I don't even know if we're financially able to go, even late next year (though I'm running under the assumption the parks will be open by then), but it'd be nice to at least get a goal number of what we can work toward.
 

Shelly F - Ohio

Disney Extraordinaire
Joined
Feb 22, 2004
Magic express is free. You must have a reservation at a Disney hotel to use the service. Meal plans you can google to find out the pricing for it. Can be $55, $78, $95 or $119 a day per person and you have to get it for every night that you have a room reservation and everyone on the reservation as to be on the dinning plan. When do you plan to go? There are serveral times in Jan that the room sell out quickly? Second week because of a race and a holiday weekend and Disney is nearly if not total sold out for that weekend. the last week of Jan because of the Pro Bowl game. In Jan you can budget $125 a night for a value and $225 for moderate and $350 - $550 for deluxe resorts per night. Park tickets are $130 a day. It depends on the day of the week and if it is around a holiday so it could be a few dollars less or more.
 
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MICKIMINI

Love the Mouse!
Joined
Sep 6, 2003
Meal plans are debated here all the time. It seems half think it is great and half don't. It is all about convenience and personally, I think QS is just fine and even at that we've had leftover credits to burn which is a waste of money. I recommend reading up on menus at allears.net and getting an idea of what you like so you aren't wasting a lot of time reading menus and debating while at the parks.

We pack snacks, dried cereal, pb crackers, etc in our check in luggage, stay at DVC as owners so we have a kitchen. We order groceries (same $ amount as home). I cook a couple simple meals at the villa which saves big $$. We always have a simple breakfast and pack dried fruit and nuts to snack on at the parks. We sometimes split a snack, or even a meal at QS, eat a sit down meal or two in 10-12 nights and spend total about $75/2 per day on food.

Moderates are nearing deluxe prices so do consider OKW or AKL which can be a deal with discounts. Enjoy planning!
 
  • Shelly F - Ohio

    Disney Extraordinaire
    Joined
    Feb 22, 2004
    One other thing about the dinning plan. More than likely the tables have to be 6 ft apart that means less tables and fewer time slots available for reservations . If you want to do a dinning plan, I would pick quick serve which is a plan that does not require a reservation because you just walk up and place and order and walk away with your food. Something to think about.
     

    Disneyfan754321

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Feb 19, 2019
    Hotels prices jump... staying at ASM first week of March this year we paid 170 a night.. this june we had a room it was 160 rescheduled for October it was going to be 199 a night so i took pop for 230 instead.
     

    YawningDodo

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Sep 16, 2014
    I feel like this is probably a dense question, but where else can someone go aside from the Disney website in order to get prices on things? Like I said, I don't even know if we're financially able to go, even late next year (though I'm running under the assumption the parks will be open by then), but it'd be nice to at least get a goal number of what we can work toward.
    Mouse Savers. I'm not sure if I'm allowed to link to their site, but if you poke around on there they have historic resort prices and you can make an educated guess based on the last few years (just be sure to budget a bit higher than the average suggests you need to).
     

    Shelly F - Ohio

    Disney Extraordinaire
    Joined
    Feb 22, 2004
    If you are planning to go the first part of Jan and you have not booked a room you might be too late. First part of Jan is very busy. With the NYE holiday, the annual race and the MLK holiday most rooms are already sold out. So if you are serious you so book now you can cancel up to 5 days before you arrive.
     
  • Jacq7414

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Apr 28, 2019
    If you are planning to go the first part of Jan and you have not booked a room you might be too late. First part of Jan is very busy. With the NYE holiday, the annual race and the MLK holiday most rooms are already sold out. So if you are serious you so book now you can cancel up to 5 days before you arrive.
    Can people even book right now? I thought that all bookings were frozen
     

    _19disnA

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Aug 8, 2018
    You can get a general sense of prices by looking at many older threads on here. The big ticket expenses would be: airfare (OP's profile shows CA), hotel, food, rental car (if applicable) & park tickets. Staying at Disney is typically more expensive then other places. You can also check out local home rentals since that provides added flexibility for meals. Eating all meals at Disney will cost more then other options.
     





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