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Disneyland money saving tips!

Mindy Espinoza

1. Be an Annual Passholder 
Depending on how many times you plan to visit the parks each year, an annual pass can be a big money saving item! I even wrote a whole post about how to pick the best AP for you! With an AP you also get a % off dining, hotels, and merchandise in the parks and select Downtown Disney locations.
 
2. Target Red debit card
With a 5% savings on red card purchases, buying Disney gift cards and using them in the parks is a smart little trick! Disney gift cards can be used inside of the park for food and souvenirs. Gift cards can also be used to purchase Annual Passes. 
  
3. Pack your own snacks/meals
I know, I know. Disney has ALL the amazing treats! BUT your reading this blog to find out how to save money! So pack up your granola bars and gold fish crackers and make a few sandwiches while your at it! If you budget good enough you will still be able to sneak a dole whip or churro into the budget! 
  
Disney allows outside food and drinks (non alcoholic) inside the parks. 
There is also a picnic area outside of Disneyland, but we usually find a good bench and people watch by the castle and enjoy our packed snacks. 
 
4. Penny press
Pressed pennies are something I personally collect. When packing for Disney put some quarters and shiney pennies in your change purse, you will be happy you did!  
Penny Press machines are ALL over Disneyland, DCA, Downtown Disney, and even in the Disneyland Hotel and Paradise Pier Hotel. Kids and adult love to see their pennies squished and stamped with their favorite characters.
  
 Disney also sells pressed penny books with slots to hold all your pressed pennies and pressed quarters. 
 
Machines will come and go ever now and then, so it is fun to see what is new each trip! There is even a pressed penny app (not Official Disney) to help keep track of what ones you already have and to help you find the machines. 
 
5. DIY some Mickey ears
It isn't as hard as you think, and most materials can be purchased from the dollar store! I even have a step by step how to guide on how to make them in my blog!
 
6. Discounted park tickets (non AP)
Although not always available, keep a look out for special 2fer ticket, So Cal discounts, or any other specials Disney might be running. This summer 2019 Disney offered bring a friend discount tickets for AP members. It ended on August 30th, but the $99 1 day park hopper pass was a $50 savings! 
 
 
7. Go on off peak days (non AP)
Disney ticket prices vary by date. There are value, regular, and peak tickets. Value days will of course be the cheapest, but are during off season times. You can go to https://disneyland.disney.go.com/tickets/ and check your trip dates to see if you will save that day! 
8. Save time and money with Maxpass
Maxpass can be added to any annual passport for $100, or purchased for a single day for $15. The MaxPass allows you to reserve FastPasses form your cell phone. You can see all the FastPass rides available along with the return time options. It will also tell you what time you can reserve your next FastPass. Setting alarms on your phone is very helpful to remember when to get your next FastPass. 
With MaxPass you also get unlimited PhotoPass downloads. PhotoPass photos are take at select dining locations, attractions, character greetings, and by PhotoPass photographers. Also includes any Magic Shots. 
 
My husband and I tried MaxPass for the first time on our last Disney trip and I highly recommend it.
9. Stay off resort 
 Off site hotels might not be as magical, and may not come with magic hour, but they will save you money! I have personally stayed int he area 3 times. The first time was at the Grand Californian, and theother 2 were off site. I recommend if you stay off site to get a hotel within walking distance, or make sure they offer a shuttle! 

10. Buy your shirts from a small shop
Matching shirts are great for groups so you can quickly locate everyone in your group. Buttons are a fun way to add some extra flare and personalize your outfit. I offer discounts when you bundle shirts and buttons together, contact me with what you want made for prices. 
Do you have any other money saving tips? Comment below and let me know! 

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