When is the cheapest weekend to visit Disney World?
You're more likely to find Disney hotel deals later in the summer, as fewer families plan trips before kids return to school.
This post comes from Lindsay Sakraida at partner site DealNews.
Most kids would probably like to visit Disney World year-round, but there's no denying the fact that a trip during the summer months, when kids are free from school, makes the most sense for many families. But just because you have to travel to the Happiest Place on Earth during the busy season doesn't mean you can't try to save money in the process.
In our quest to pinpoint the absolute best time to visit Disney World in Orlando over the summer, we turned to the good folks at Priceline. They provided DealNews with exclusive 2013 price information from hundreds of Disney-accessible Orlando hotels, so we could see what families will pay for accommodations in the coming months.
Snag the best Disney hotel deals in late summer
Priceline discovered that, in terms of nightly hotel rates, the cheapest weekend to visit Disney during the summer season is the second to last weekend of August — aka, the weekend before Labor Day weekend. Conversely, the most expensive time is the last weekend in June. When comparing the average nightly rates for these weekends, the price advantage might seem relatively slight, as the difference is $12 per night, or 14% more to lodge during that June weekend.
However, pricing between the two weekends is especially notable when we break the data down by hotel star rating. Priceline's mid-level, 3-star rating is likely to be the more mainstream option for a family traveling on a budget. Luckily, when we compare the weekends based on the cost for 3-star hotels, the savings are more significant. There's a 23% increase in cost during the aforementioned June weekend, or a difference of $22 per night. Depending on the length of stay and number of rooms needed, that can add up very quickly.
Rates change depending on school schedules
The reason why pricing works out this way is likely because of the academic calendar. Schools finish at varying times across the country, but most are closed for the year in early to mid June. Traveling at the end of the month then is ideal (and safely available) for vacation-eager families to head down to Florida.
On the other hand, kids start returning to school around Labor Day, or early September. Since families are mentally preparing to send their kids back to their daily schedule, late August is probably overlooked as a possibility for major summer travel, driving prices down. Moreover, it's likely that many families have plans for Labor Day on the following weekend, however slight, and traveling the weekend before might therefore be less popular in general.
Readers, are any of you planning a trip to Disney this summer? What are your tips for saving while at the Happiest Place on Earth? Let us know in the comments below.
More from DealNews
Stay off resort. Windsor Hills and Windsor Palms are rental homes that include private pools for each house. Houses are located less than 10 minutes from all parks. Houses up to 6 or 7 bedrooms will allow two families to stay. Houses are fully furnished and allow you to eat at home for breakfast before heading to the parks and if on a budget, for dinner too. Houses are typically $1400-$1700 for a week, even in peak season. we are going in October and we found a 5 bedroom house for just under $1400 with pool heat included.
if flying, pack light, the houses are outfitted with a washer/dryer so a load or two of clothes can limit baggage and save money for paying for checked bags.
if married with kids, unless you plan on a suite at Disney, there is no get away from the kids in a standard room. In Windsor Hills, put the kids to bed and enjoy a glass of wine with you husband by the pool and take an evening swim. And if you are a family of more than 4, the cost of a second room at Disney is outweighed by the savings of a house at Windsor Hills.
we have a bunch of friends that stayed on resort and have now tried the rental house option. They will never go back to Disney resorts.
We have been going to Disney World once or twice a year since 2006. We just returned a couple of weeks ago and this is the first time I can say we were disappointed. For the 2 of us in a moderate resort, no meal plan and a 5-day park hopper we paid over $1500 and then had to purchase our food. They put chips in their cups so we paid $17.99 a piece to have soda at our resort, the MagicBand didn't work half the time, the FastPass+ didn't allow you to do Fast Passes in more than 1 park and only 3 in a day and then they tiered them so you couldn't do some rides if they were in the same upper tier (the day we returned they changed this but too late for us to take advantage). Our additional expense was $700 and we purchased nothing to bring home with us.
We saved by going to a grocery store and microwaving our breakfasts, and packed sandwiches and water and took them into the parks with us. Still in total we were well over $2,300 and that didn't include our gas, hotel down & back or any other incidentals while driving. Not a cheap trip by any means!
Rent nice condos online through VRBO for $600 per week, Freeze water bottles and put in soft side cooler with sandwiches, fruit cups and snacks for lunch. Then go to the parking lot and relax in your rental car for an hour while everyone else in the park stands in line for there lunch reservation.
We go to Disney/Universal every year. while the park tickets are getting more and more expensive, packing a lunch and using VRBO for lodging offsets the cost.
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