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Old 02-14-2011, 07:19 AM   #16 (permalink)
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I'm gonna make this a sticky, so it can be accessed by other DVC members and easily found!
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Old 02-14-2011, 08:47 AM   #17 (permalink)
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I also cook dinners at home. Mike takes his lunch to work everyday so that saves a bunch. We only go out to eat maybe 3 times a month because we can cook the same meals here for a fraction of the cost.
From what DH says I am a good cook.
It's cool to see coin jars are a big hit with everyone. It's surprising how much we get out of the coin jars I bring mine to the market where they have the coin machine so I don't have to roll them..
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Old 02-15-2011, 06:30 AM   #18 (permalink)
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I know it's only pennies but I go to a bank that has the coin counting for free. Most of the banks around me do not even require you have an account.
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Old 02-15-2011, 06:55 AM   #19 (permalink)
 
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I use the coinstar machine but I use it towards an amazon gift card so it's also free. If you want the money they charge 9%. I have changed a few habits myself to save up. I now order my daughter's diapers, wipes, food through amazon mom subscribe & save. The same box of diapers that I used to pay $41.99 for at BJ's wholesale club only costs me $28 with the subscribe and save program. That's a $14 savings on every box of diapers... believe me that adds up! Not sure if you have little ones but I wanted to mention it just incase.

Like others have said already, we buy APs every other year and group our trips. For example, we went to WDW last October 10-18 and bought our APs that trip. We used them for 8 days that trip. We just went back last week and used them 6 days that trip. Our next trip will be October 1 - 8 so we will use them another 7 days so we get a total of 21 days from those APs. Then we wait about 14 or 15 months to go again and buy our APs again that trip. So we are only paying for those APs about every 2 to 2.5 years. Hope that makes sense.

We do enjoy table service meals on vacation so we also bought our Tables in Wonderland membership but with DD approaching her terrible twos now we plan to eat more counter service on our next trip. I feel less obligated to order my own meal with counter service so sharing meals will save a lot of money too.
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Old 02-15-2011, 09:20 AM   #20 (permalink)
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Things we do that help make our DVC trips affordable:
-Drive to WDW instead of fly. Instead of buying 4 airplane tickets and renting a car, we spend a day in the car driving down the Eastern Seaboard and enjoying each other's company. It takes us about 15 hours drive-time to get from Philadelphia to Orlando. Amount Saved: $1500.

-Purchase Annual Passes, and get two trips minimum out of them. At the DVC member rate of about $400 each, Our park time costs us $200 each trip.

-Disney VISA - we have the Disney VISA credit card, and use it exclusively. We then request a Disney VISA Rewards gift card that we apply towards our WDW purchases.

-Grocery Shopping - I can't implore enough the importance of stocking your DVC kitchen each trip - the money saved by eating a meal or two a day in your room instead of at the parks is significant.

Those are money-saving ideas to use to make your vacation more affordable and still very enjoyable.


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Old 02-15-2011, 10:37 AM   #21 (permalink)
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Excellent! I really need to look into ap they def seem worth it. We drove down just once and it was many years ago and the kids were small and it was small torture! We left at 11pm and stopped several times to rest and once to sleep but since they are older it may be time to revisit driving from long island especially since my dd will soon have a drivers license!!!
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Old 02-22-2011, 01:00 PM   #22 (permalink)
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Here's what we are doing to save. At home - eat out less, entertainment consists of movie marathons of dvd's we already have ( ex - Pirates of the Carribean all 3) and community theater. We have 2 piggy banks (one a pig and one a cow) The pig gets "fed" every payday with $100-200. Then DH and I both get $100 allowance for the 2 weeks. Whatever we don't use of the allowance goes into the cow. (ex - $20 for gas, $20 to eat out, $15 on makeup then $45 goes to the cow at the end of the pay period and we start over) Travel - we drive. We take 2 extra days and drive from Michigan. My car gets 35 mpg and even using premium gas, it only costs us $160 in gas and the cost of a hotel and food. Can't get 2 airline tickets for that! At the parks - We are planning on buying an AP in Nov. Then we will use it for our Nov trip and planning a trip the following spring and then October again before the pass expires - 3 trips on one pass! And finally - DDP! Love it. We always eat well when we go down to Disney. This year I am planning to use some of our income tax refund for the DDP and AP - so really just saving $ for travel and misc spending. It's painless. If you really look at where your $ goes - it's not hard to make a few easy changes to find the cash.
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Old 02-24-2011, 01:26 PM   #23 (permalink)
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We drive from Wisconsin every year and the savings are huge. Cost is about $450 for gas round trip when prices were at their highest. We usually leave around 3 am (beat Chicago traffic) and drive until we hit the Florida border then rest for a few hours. We get to Disney early in the AM and most of the time we can check in already. We take extra food, water and snacks and rarely need to purchase food. It is also nice to be able to pick up groceries or any other necessities you may need instead of purchasing at the hotel. We take at least 1 day and go to the outlet malls in Orlando. If you have a daughter, she will love it. We purchase almost all of our Disney souvenirs there for a fraction of the price at the parks. ( I got a pink hooded sweatshirt for $17 that was at Hollywood Studios for $50.) AP's have a lot of perks with them. (Savings on meals and DTD). We also ask for Disney gift cards from friends and family for birthdays and holidays.
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Old 02-26-2011, 01:55 PM   #24 (permalink)
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i started my jar of cash and would like to buy disney gift cards so I am not tempted to "borrow" the money. What can I use them for in the parks besides the stores ?? I usually buy the park tix through undercover tourist? can I use them for dining? but not the dining plan right?
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Old 02-26-2011, 02:17 PM   #25 (permalink)
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We put all of our change in a Planters Peanut jar. We just emptied it and it had $191 worth of change in there. It took us about a year to fill it with out loose change.
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Old 02-26-2011, 03:32 PM   #26 (permalink)
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awesome!!! thats almost $200 disney dollars!!!!!!!
My husband and I have a family "jar" which when filled we can get about $1000! I have started my "secret" stash of cash and I have one of those change things that count your change I figure each time one of them reaches $25 i will buy a gift card.
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Old 03-04-2011, 10:03 AM   #27 (permalink)
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We are thinking of driving in the near future...this April we are flying (paying more for tickets than I like) since our son is only just 3 but I figure in the next couple of years he should be fine to do the drive especially as our daughter has done it a few times and she is almost 11 now. So.....4 & 12 or 5 & 13 should be do able even from Rhode Island...right?
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Old 03-04-2011, 10:37 AM   #28 (permalink)
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When ever I get money for birthdays or holidays I add it to my "cash stash"
Yesterday I put in a few dollars I had in my wallet & saw I now have $100.00 saved already! Coin jar is filling up too..
We still have 8 months to go & save ..
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Old 03-04-2011, 11:11 AM   #29 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Eeyore Tattoo View Post
I also cook dinners at home. Mike takes his lunch to work everyday so that saves a bunch. We only go out to eat maybe 3 times a month because we can cook the same meals here for a fraction of the cost.
From what DH says I am a good cook.
It's cool to see coin jars are a big hit with everyone. It's surprising how much we get out of the coin jars I bring mine to the market where they have the coin machine so I don't have to roll them..
The coin machine at my grocery store charges 9 cents on the dollar! Too much! My bank has one that can be used for free by account holders. I dump the coins at the bank and deposit the full amount in our vacation fund
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Old 03-04-2011, 11:23 AM   #30 (permalink)
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I grocery shop at Shop Rite (north Jersey) and utilize a Price Plus card for in store savings. At the bottom of the receipt is printed the "Amount Saved." I write a check to our vacation fund for this amount. We make a game out of it with my daughter. We like to see how high we can get it! Sometimes it's a small amount - $4-$6, but when I really shop the circular it can be well over $20. The amounts are usually small enough that you don't really feel the pinch in your check book, but they can really add up in the vacation fund. I can usually hit $50 to $80 a month. I've been doing this for a little over a year and I have saved $1,800.
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