A former Disney Cast Member created The Ultimate Disney World Savings Guide to help families save money at Walt Disney World. She also wanted to provide you with tips and techniques for maximizing your time and making the most out of your Orlando vacation.
We have all seen these e-books all over the web claiming to have secrets that no one else knows about and promising you the world. I have wasted my money on some of these myself in the past.
However, I was very interested in seeing whether you really could save money at Disney World as she claims. Considering that I live an hour’s drive from Disney and have a 2 year old, I figured that I would soon need to know these secrets in the coming years.
With that said, I purchased the e-book and downloaded it from the download page.
As I opened the e-book I will say that my initial response was disappointment because of the length of the book, 140 pages (40 pages of which are readers’ comments giving tips and websites, forms, more tips, etc.). Some people may like long e-books but not me.
I like for them to get straight to the point, leaving out all fluff. I also don’t like having to read on the computer screen for hours on end.
However, the more that I read the book the more satisfied I became. I came across many tips and ideas in which I was unaware.
The e-book is very comprehensive giving you information covering saving money on lodging, dining, tickets, and souvenirs.
She even gives you information on nearby hospitals and provides forms to help you keep track of reservations, confirmations and other important information for your trip.
The guide starts off by discussing ways to save money on lodging. This includes staying in one of the Disney resorts, nearby hotels or vacation properties.
Lodging is likely to be one of the biggest expenses of the trip. The author does a good job of explaining your different options for lodging and how to find the best deal.
She even goes into extreme detail providing tables with the different rates according to the different seasons (peak season, off peak season, holiday season, etc.)
One of the strategies that she explains in this section could possibly save you hundreds if you chose one of the more expensive resorts at Disney. It does involve a little work and some risk but seems to be worth the effort.
I could also see how money could be saved using another one of the tips that she provided in the guide. She explains how to find vacation rental property and the pros and cons of staying in a vacation property versus staying in a hotel.
The author then goes into the different ways of saving money on your tickets. Hands down one of the best ways to save money on 1-2 day tickets with Disney is by attending timeshare presentations.
But most people do not want to spend their precious vacation time fighting off high pressure salespeople for 2-3 hours.
The author does a good job of explaining the other ways to save money on tickets. But don’t expect to find free or even $10 Disney tickets anywhere without attending a timeshare presentation.
You can save the most using the author’s techniques on the multiple day tickets with the added options such as Park Hopper (ability to go to the different Disney parks using one ticket) and No Expiration option.
Although the author does a good job providing a lot of useful information there are some things that I think would make the guide better.
I think that the presentation of the information could be improved and that it should be shortened.
I have already expressed my disdain for long e-books.
Maybe it is my short attention span, but I thought that the book was too long and boring in some places.
Also throughout the e-book there are areas of large blocks of text. Separating this large block into paragraphs would have made the information easier to read on the screen and more scannable when reviewing for specific information.
Overall, I would say that the Disney Secrets guide is worth the money. You may be able to find some of the tips on your own by scouring the web for hours on end in forums, signing up for newsletters and other time consuming methods.
You can certainly do so and may find ways to save. However, I would recommend investing in the guide and using it to get a jump start on planning your trip. The guide will unquestionably pay for itself with the information inside.
After all time is money and the kids are all ready to visit the happiest place on earth.