We went on our first trip to Disneyland Paris last October which was amazing. I have wanted to take my little family for a while but, as you can imagine, travelling as a family of five is so expensive, especially to somewhere like Disneyland Paris.
So we wanted/needed to try and keep the costs down as much as possible, all whilst still trying to make the experience magical and amazing! Which I am pleased to say we did! And here’s how we did it:
Shop around for the best deal
Admittedly this is not something I am great at usually. However, Disneyland Paris had a really cool deal of ‘buy 2 nights and get 2 free’ last year if you booked by the end of February.
Now at this point of the year we are usually still getting over the costs of Christmas and not in a position to book and pay in full for a holiday. However, I knew I wanted to take my bunch in the October half term and when I saw this deal it was now or never.
We were quoted a really great price which included the 4 night hotel stay and 5 days admission into the park. As we were staying in a Disney hotel, the magic hour also applied to us and our tickets included fast passes which could be used every two hours.
Now I know this isn’t for everyone, in fact it wasn’t for me!! When my husband suggested driving I wasn’t keen, we live in the North West of England which meant it was a 5 hour driver to Dover with three young children.
However, when we looked at flights we were looking at just under £1000 for all of us, not including transfers to the hotel and airport parking. Driving actually cut this cost down by half, including petrol, a night stay in a hotel by the ferry terminal, food for us all and our ferry ticket. It was a no brainer, and it actually was fine.
We stopped off for lunch on the way down and the children watched some films on the journey. It felt like a real adventure.
When booking Disney you get the choice to add meal plans. We decided not to do this, mainly because my girls don’t eat a lot at breakfast time, in fact neither do I so I knew it would be a waste of money.
Due to the fact we were driving we decided to take as much with us as possible including food for breakfast and lunch. I knew eating out would be expensive and I know how fussy eaters my children are.
We took a toaster, bread, cereal and milk. I also took sandwich fillers so I could make a little packed lunch for us all and we popped to Costco on the way for a huge crate of waters. This worked perfectly, it saved us so much money and time.
DisneyLand Paris was so busy, the one time we actually managed to get a seat in a café we still waited in a queue for over 30 minutes to get a cup of tea. It would have been so tough if we never took food with us, especially with a 1 year old because obviously when they need feeding they NEED feeding!!
So, with all this food, we only ended up paying for our evening meals.
I read about making snack packs and I knew it would be perfect for my bunch. I got some sandwich bags and filed them with a piece of fruit, bread sticks, yogurt, sweets and crisp the girl both excitedly helped. We didn’t need to buy any over-priced snacks and we didn’t run out of anything.
Again this was nice and easy because we drove, however if you are flying, things like water bottles are worth taking as there are places to fill these up around the park.
I made sure we stocked up on Disney ears before we left England. I got my girls some reduced from Claire’s Accessories (you could get them even cheaper from the likes of Primark) and I made sure we took autograph books with us.
I still let the girls choose a little something from the shops in Disney so they were super excited but it meant they weren’t spending their money on over priced accessories.
I would love to know if you had any money saving tips for Disneyland Paris?