Sunday, June 16, 2013

A Blog Begins...

So I decided to start blogging about past, present, and future Disneyland resort visits and the time and money savings tips I have found, used, or plan to use and how they can be useful to others. While visiting the Disneyland Resort in Anaheim, California can be an expensive undertaking there are numerous little tips and tricks a visitor can use to enjoy a parks visit and save some money in the process.

As regular visitors, we have found that for our limited entertainment budget, it was a place that we have obtained great value for the money.  This is even with the yearly price increases! This is in spite of living in a state that has a the largest amount of amusement venues outside of what is offered in Florida! Being local to all these choices has allowed us to visit and observe which parks we find works best for our family and what we enjoy doing.  This is in no way to say that our choice is the only choice.  Each person or family should truly think about what they enjoy and spend their entertainments budget accordingly.At this time, we find that the product put out by Disney is still superior entertainment and best for our current family dynamic with two adults and our 6 year old.

The first thing any visitor should do is plan their budget, whether it's for a single day or multiple day visit.  The type of visit you want will ultimately determine your budget.  Not local? Then you will need to budget in travel expenses. Depending on your available resources, that will include travel to and from the Disneyland Resort, Hotel stay, Resort admission, Souvenirs, and of course Food/Drinks. Local visitors have at minimum Resort Admission and Food/Drinks. As locals, we often obtain a hotel for an overnight stay to allow a full weekend visit or the ability to stay late at the parks without the long drive home. Since there are travel sites and blogs available, I am focusing on visiting the parks themselves. 

While visiting Disneyland and Disney's California Adventure, your biggest park expenses will be food and drinks. The first thing you want to ensure is that you have access to plenty of fluids for your park visiting days. Water should be on the top of any visitors list.  Now this can be a pretty pricey item, as the price of bottled water runs about $2.79 plus tax for a 15 oz Desani.  To drink enough, that can add up during the day.  

My first tip is to bring in an unopened bottle of water for each person in your group. Those bottles can be refilled at fountains all day long throughout the resort. Aside from the fountains located throughout the park, there are places that provide filtered water.  Within Disneyland you can find these spots next to the Mint Julep Bar attached to the French Market eatery, within the seating area of Rancho Del Zocolo, and from bottled water within the First Aid offices in both parks.  

Worried about the taste? Take along a single serving of your favorite water flavor mix in. Since overhauling our eating habits, we have switched to mix ins from, as they are all natural and contain no sugar.  Whatever you choose, this will help for anyone who dislikes the fountain taste.  Want cold water?  No problem, most counter eateries within the parks will provide you as many water glasses with ice that you want for free.  Yep, FREE! Ice cold water without spending a dime.  True, you will have to take a minute to get them, but especially on hot days, it is worth it.

If you do not wish to fill up the bottles, you can bring in several.  Freeze a few and they will thaw and be cold when you wish to drink them.  This is especially good if you plan to take an small afternoon break and go back to a local hotel to rest and return later.  If you plan to obtain a locker to hold personal things and snacks, you can throw the frozen bottles in there and circle back throughout the day to get them.  With our 6 year old, we have a small fanny pack that holds a few snacks and a bottle of water.  This ensures she has water at hand at all times, and she doesn't have to carry it. She alternates that pack with a small backpack that can hold her water and snacks.  

My next post will carry information on eating within the parks on a budget. Please feel free to post comments and information below, as they are always welcome!

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