Ideas for cheap/free extras when visiting Walt Disney World Resort

Campfire Singalong - Orlando Fun and Food
Campfire Singalong – Orlando Fun and Food

A vacation to Walt Disney World Resort is certainly an investment for most.  Walt Disney World does a great job with the variety of activities, resorts, & package options for most every budget.  If you’re like me, however, you want to squeeze the most fun & value out of that trip.  Whether you are wanting to fill a day off from the parks or just get some freebies, I have some suggestions for you:

  • Stop by either location of the Bippity Boppity Boutique (World of Disney store at Downtown Disney or Cinderella Castle at Magic Kingdom Park) & ask for pixie dust.  My nearly teenage daughter & I love to do this.  It’s free & you will sparkle for days!
  • For just $5 you can get a hair gel, pixie dusted ‘do from The Harmony Barber Shop on Main Street in Magic Kingdom Park .  I’ve seen girls & boys alike with this.
  • Cups of icewater are free at locations where fountain drinks are served.  Good on a hot Florida afternoon.
  • Most resorts have free activities & pool games.  Ask for a schedule when you check in.
  • If you are celebrating, well, pretty much anything, get a button.  The cast members really try to make whatever you are celebrating special.  I’ve received free desserts, fastpasses, & even a monorail birthday announcement!
  • The Ghirardelli store at Downtown Disney is always giving away free samples of something.
  • Spend some time resort hopping.  I love visiting the Grand Floridian, though I admit I have never spent a night there.  From the pianist playing in the lobby to the jazz ensemble in the evenings, just being in the lobby for a while is enough for me.
  • Try a boat ride to a resort.  The boat ride from Downtown Disney to Port Orleans is probably my favorite.  The ride to Fort Wilderness is also fun to me because I like to see the old River Country & the shoe tree.
  • If it is holiday time, ie Christmas, Halloween, etc, you should definitely take a ride around Fort Wilderness Campground.  The golf cart parade is always fun & the campsites are so very interesting.  Many go to great lengths to decorate & love to talk to visitors.
  • If you are visiting during the Christmas season, visit the resorts.  There are many incredible decorations & free activities for the season.
  • Check out Chip & Dale’s sing-along campfire & movie at Fort Wilderness.  It is free!  Similar activities can be found at the Grand Floridian, Beach Club Resort, & Port Orleans-Riverside.  Some vary by season so inquire at the resort. S’mores kits are also available for a small price.
  • Several resorts have a free evening movie.  The Polynesian has theirs on the beach.
  • Watch wishes from a resort on the monorail line.  They even play the music locally.
  • Spend an evening on the boardwalk at the Boardwalk Resort. From street performers to carnival games, you’ll be entertained.
  • Several of the deluxe resorts/DVC resorts offer free tours.  This does not mean a sales tour.  We happened upon one at the Animal Kingdom lodge one day.  My family of 3 had a private tour around the resort with a cast member who gave us great information about the animals & answered every question we could think of.  She was wonderful!
  • Also at Animal Kingdom Lodge, you can view the animals on the Savana for free.  You do not have to be a resort guest for some of the viewing areas.
  • There are 2 official Walt Disney World outlet stores in Orlando.  Orlando Premium Outlets has 2 locations at either end of International Drive.  Both have a WDW outlet store.  You will find the same merchandise from the parks here but at discounted prices.  Of course, the products have usually been on sale at the parks for some time before it’s available here.  Still worth a look to save some money!
Disney Outlet - Orlando Fun and Food
Disney Outlet – Orlando Fun and Food

I’m sure there are many more that I have not mentioned.  Do you have a favorite cheap/free thing to do while at Walt Disney World?  Please leave a comment & let me know!!

My name is Jason Mayhew, and I am the owner of OFF On The Go. When not traveling with the website, I own my own marketing and PR company, J Mayhew Marketing. I have the best job where I get to travel the world and showcase the most amazing and unique experiences!

About Author

Jason Mayhew

My name is Jason Mayhew, and I am the owner of OFF On The Go. When not traveling with the website, I own my own marketing and PR company, J Mayhew Marketing. I have the best job where I get to travel the world and showcase the most amazing and unique experiences!