Star Wars: Galactic Starcruiser
Star Wars: Galactic Starcruiser is not really like any other Disney World resort. Its more like an immersive entertainment and accommodation experience. Its a 2-night experience that puts you aboard a Starcruiser in the universe of Star Wars, where you experience unique food, entertainment and adventures. Most people will choose to add this to the beginning or end of a regular Disney World stay. See our page on the Star Wars: Galactic Starcruiser experience for more.
Other Military Discounts At Disney World
Along with Disney Military Promotional Tickets, eligible service members could purchase the , at a discount. Part of PhotoPass, visitors can get unlimited downloads of all of the photos and videos that Disneys photographers take in the parks for the length of their visit. The program also includes discounts on photo prints. Regularly priced at $169, Disney World offers Memory Maker at $98 to eligible service members.
There are no military discounts at the restaurants operated by Disney World. But third-party restaurants, such as Raglan Road and House of Blues at Disney Springs, offer savings of 10% to 25%. The site, Military Disney Tips, has a list of participating restaurants. The military-only Shades of Green hotel has on-site restaurants, including the full-service Manginos.
You can book a tee time at one of Disney Worlds four golf courses with a military discount.
Shades of Green offers discounted Military Promotional Tickets to Universal Orlando. The offers include specially-priced 4-day, park-to-park tickets at deep discounts as well as 1-day and other passes at more modest discounts. The hotel also offers discounted military tickets to SeaWorld Orlando, Legoland Florida, and other area parks and attractions.
Disney Military Cruise Discounts
These discounts vary by season, destination, which cruise ship, and other factors. Discounts are often announced with short notice , so it is recommended to check back frequently. Here is the Disney Cruise Line Military Discount page. Unsure if your desired port stop is an approved destination? Check out the Department of State Travel Advisories page.
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Free Disney Dining Promotion
The Free Dining Promotion is the single most popular discount at Disney World. As such, the competition for rooms during the promotion period is fierce. I have a whole post dedicated to the ins and out of the Free Dining Promotion so I wont go into huge detail here.
The general gist is that if you book a Magic Your Way vacation package in an eligible room during the promotion period, you qualify for a free Disney Dining plan. This is a potentially massive savings depending on the size of your party.
Seriously, I know Im a broken record, but always do the math first to determine if this is a good deal for you. Some families end up saving a ton during this promotion, others not so much. It kind of depends on what type of eaters your family is, family composition, and so forth.
Update: The Free Dining Promotion continues to be suspended. I do expect it to come back once Disney is able to increase capacity and open more restaurants.
Youll Be Assigned A Home Resort
Youll likely have some options on choosing what resort you want to call home. We had the choice between Copper Creek at Disneys Wilderness Resort Canyon and Aulani in Hawaii . We chose Copper Creek. On our 2020 Disney Cruise, prospective DVC members were being offered the choice between the new Riviera Resort and Aulani. You have to pick from what they give youyou cant just randomly decide you want to call Animal Kingdom Lodge home.
If youd like to stay at other properties besides your home resort, you can. The rules for making reservations are different. You can make reservations at your home resort up to 11 months in advance. If you want to make reservations at any other DVC resort, its seven months. These time standards are no joke. We were able to reserve at our home resort right at the 11-month mark but when we tried to book a room four months in advance, we had trouble finding anything and ending up having to split our stay between two different properties.
Disney Visa Card Holders
Be sure to check the Disney Visa perks page for current offerings.
- Disney Rewards. While not exactly a discount, a key selling point of the Disney Visa card is that users can earn Reward Dollars for qualifying purchases. These Reward Dollars can be used like cash at the Disney theme parks and some other locations.
- Merchandise Discounts. When spending at least $50 on a single transaction, Disney Visa Users can get 10% off at many Disney owned and operated retail locations in the WDW parks and resorts. ALWAYS ask.
- Restaurant Discounts. Disney Visa users can get 10% off at many Disney owned and operated restaurant, as well as at some other on-site dining locations. Some items may not be included in the offer. Blackout dates may apply.
Note: In addition to WDW discounts, Disney Visa users also have benefits at other Disney theme parks, Disney Cruise Line, and on shopDisney.com.
You Can Use Points At Non
There are 350 destinations around the world and youll be given access to a site where you can view and book properties. Even though the best value for your DVC points is at Disney, it can work like any other time share. If youre not feeling Disney on a particular year but still want to take a trip, you can. But back to what I said earlierif an every-other-year trip to Disney World doesnt sound like something you want to sustain, DVC membership probably isnt for you. Try renting DVC points instead of buying.
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Disney Vacation Club Members
Disney Vacation Club Members have access to some discounts that are similar to AP holders, as well as some that are unique to DVC. Be sure to check the DVC member page for current offerings.
- Restaurant Discounts. Dozens of on-site restaurants offer 10-15% discounts for DVC members. Some allow the discount for apply to several members of your party. Some have excluded time periods or food items. Always ask at the restaurant.
- Merchandise Discounts. Almost all on-site retail locations owned and operated by Disney offer a 20% discount to DVC members. Additionally, many non-Disney retailers on-site offer 10-15% off to DVC members. ALWAYS ask.
- Recreation Discounts. DVC members can get lower rates on one-day WDW water park tickets, a discount on Splitsville bowling, a discount on the Aerophile balloon at Disney Springs, discounts on some dates for after hours parties such as Mickeys Not So Scary Halloween Party, discounts on some theme park dessert parties, 15% off WDW mini-golf, and 15% off most WDW backstage tours.
- Annual Pass Discounts. DVC members have access to reduced rates on several categories of WDW annual pass.
Some affiliations can get you substantial savings on WDW hotel rates
Note: DVC members also many discounts at Disneyland, Aulani, and other DVC locations, as well as on Disney Cruise Line.
Sports Recreations And Spa:
DVC Members can get discounts on a wide range of activities, including on Disney golf courses, and recreational activities such as bike and boat rentals.
DVC Members can receive 15% off select services at participating Disney spas, and 20% off select services at Mandara Spa at the Dolphin Hotel.
Offers vary by location. For the latest discounts, you can consult the official Disney Vacation Club page.
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Disneys Animal Kingdom Villas Jambo House
Disneys Animal Kingdom Lodge is a popular resort broken up into two sections Jambo House and Kidani Village. Jambo house is the main lodge where the beautiful lobby is. Kidani Village is a short bus ride away and is all DVC Villas. Animal Kingdom Lodge is a popular place to stay because of the on-site savanna with animal viewing. I meanwho wouldnt want to have their morning coffee while watching the sun rise with some giraffes?
We stayed in a three-bedroom Deluxe Grand Villa inside Jambo house and it was the height of Disney luxury. This is how I imagine celebrities and the ultra rich must experience Disney World. The Deluxe Grand Villas have three bedrooms, one master suite with a king-sized bed and two smaller bedrooms with two queen beds each. The couch in the living room also makes a bed. There were two separate balconies overlooking the savanna, a full kitchen, dining room and game room with a pool table. There were four bathrooms an en suite for each bedroom plus a hall bathroom you can use without having to go into anyones bedroom. Everything was exquisitely themed, from the wall art to the tiles in the shower.
Fun Reasons To Visit Disneyland Resort
Delight in countless magical moments at the Disneyland Resort with your valid theme park admission.
Disneyland Park is where it all began. With its enchanting attractions and entertainment, Walts original theme park is home to timeless fun. Here, you can:
- Live your adventure in a galaxy far, far away at the all-new land, Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge, where you embark on a daring flight on Millennium Falcon: Smugglers Run. Guests can can join the Resistance aboard Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance*, a thrilling new attraction thats like nothing youve ever experienced before.
- Embark on an alpine adventure around a majestic, snow-capped mountain on the Matterhorn Bobsleds.
- Celebrate more than 50 years of swashbuckling fun when you set sail on Pirates of the Caribbean.
- Step into a storybook world and meet some beloved Disney Princesses at Royal Hall.
- Earn bragging rights for braving a tour of the Haunted Mansion, a creepy estate home to ghosts, ghouls and all sorts of supernatural surprises.
For more escapades inspired by Disney and Pixar tales, head over to Disney California Adventure Park, where you can:
Certain attractions, experiences, services and offerings may be modified, have limited availability or be unavailable. Park admission and offerings are not guaranteed.
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Staying At Shades Of Green
One of the first on-property hotels at Disney World, Shades of Green was originally known as the Golf Resort and was open to the general public. It is located between two of the resorts golf courses. The 600-room hotel is now owned and operated by the U.S. military, is open only to eligible service members, and offers discounted rates.
Shades of Green is comparable to Disney Worlds Deluxe resorts such as Disney’s Wilderness Lodge and Disney’s Contemporary Resort. The rates, however, are less than what Disney charges at its hotels. Eligible service members can make reservations up to one year in advance. Since the hotel is very popular, reservations should be made as early as possible.
Active and retired military members can book up to three rooms at Shades of Green. The hotels suites and rooms can accommodate up to 10 guests. Whether or not you are staying at the hotel, eligible service members can visit its ticket office and dine in its restaurants.
What About Memory Maker
Disney is offering a specially priced Memory Maker. The Memory Maker is the Disney PhotoPass product at Walt Disney World.
The service member or spouse may purchase this at the Walt Disney World theme park ticket window. The limit is 2 Memory Maker product purchases at the special price.
Memory Maker includes photos that are taken during the Memory Maker Window. This is generally within 30 days after the first activation and linked to the guests Disney PhotoPass account. A MagicBand will be required to receive certain attraction photos and other digital content.
The cost for 2022 tickets is $98 to use between January 1st, 2022 through December 17th, 2022.
Whether you are going to Disney World or Disneyland, make sure you understand the terms and conditions of the tickets.
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Staying On Walt Disney World Property
Staying at a Disney owned resort comes with many benefits, the most intangible of which is that you will feel like you are at Disney during your entire trip, not just while at the parks. Staying at a Disney owned resort is an immersive experience and so much more convenient. This includes the DVC Resorts.
Check out this list of amenities that youll receive when you stay in a Disney Resort:
- Free Disney provided roundtrip transportation to your resort from the Orlando International Airport .
- Free transportation from your resort to all WDW destinations via Disneys fleet of buses, boats, monorails, and gondolas.
- Free theme park parking, should you decide to drive your car.
- Participation in Extra Magic Hours early entry and late stays at designated parks on designated days. The general public is not allowed in during Extra Magic Hours.
- Property wide charging of your Disney purchases to your room.
- Disney Merchandise delivery to your resort
- Guaranteed theme park entry on high attendance days when the parks close due to nearing capacity
- The ability to add the various Disney Dining Plans to your vacation
- The ability to book Advance Dining Reservations for your entire trip at the 180-day mark.
Kidani Village Savanna Room View
Stars And Stripes Pass
For Walt Disney World military guests who plan to experience an extended Disney vacation, the Stars and Stripes Pass is another option. Potential buyers must be guests staying at a Walt Disney World Resort hotel who are eligible to stay at Shades of Green. There are a few more stipulations as follows:
- Guests must present military ID and Walt Disney World Resort ID for purchase.
- Tickets are sold in 2-10 day increments.
- The number of ticket days must match the length of stay.
- Guests must use days consecutively.
- Ticket holders can use passes in all four theme parks and additional venues- Disney’s Wide World of Sports complex, Blizzard Beach, and Typhoon Lagoon.
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How Much Does The Disney Vacation Club Cost
Its expensive. A DVC purchase is a major one and an investment for your future. Youre buying your family vacations for the next 50 years. You purchase a set amount of points to use in a calendar year. The minimum number of points you can buy is 160 and the max is 2,000. We bought 250 points and our total investment was about $40,000. We purchased while aboard a Disney Cruise and there were some incentives to purchase on the ship.
A travel agent friend told me the best place to join DVC was on board a Disney Cruise and I think that was solid advice. However, topping up your points on a Disney Cruise doesnt come with the same incentives. We looked into buying some additional points on our most recent Disney Cruise and we could have gotten the same pricing by just going online and buying the points.
We had to pay a down payment and financed the rest. Youre looking at an initial cost of about 10 percent of your purchase price to buy-in. We used a credit card and loaded up on miles. We currently pay about $500 per month for our membership and resort fees. The upside is that no money changes hands when we stay at Disney World. We book our room through the Disney Vacation Club members have access to a special portal to book their rooms and not the regular way. Our vacations are pre-paidwe just have to take them.
You can also rent DVC points.
This page offers a calculator that gives an idea of how much DVC membership will cost.
Disney World Discounts: Spring/summer 2021
Disney has begun releasing discounts that cover the rest of the spring and the beginning of summer. Remember, room and ticket discounts are not created equal so make sure you do some math to see which of the Disney World discounts saves you the most money.
Spring Into Magic!
Disney just released the room only discount that runs through the rest of the spring and into early summer. It is essentially an extension of the room discounts they offered for early 2021, but at a slightly lower discount.
You can get up to 30% off the rack room rate with this resort only discount. The level of discount depends on which resort you choose to stay at.
Spring Into Magic is valid on stays most nights from April 18, 2021 through July 10, 2021. This offer can be booked through May 27, 2021.
The typical exclusions do apply:
- 3 bedroom villas
- Cabins at Copper Creek Resort
- Bungalows at Polynesian Resort
Annual Passholder: Spring Into Magic
As the name implies, this is the Annual Passholder version of the Spring Into Magic deal thats available to all guests. The only difference is the discount offered to Annual Passholders is larger.
See those screenshots listed above for Spring into Magic? You can simply add 5% to those numbers and you have yourself the discount categories for the annual passholder version of the discount.
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Easy Way To Save On Your Disney Cruise
In our opinion, you should always book a Disney cruise using a travel agent. The benefits are just too great, both in convenience and price. First off, the best travel agents give you onboard credit, which is effectively FREE money, since the cruise fare isnt any higher than if you booked through Disney. Furthermore, Disney Cruise Line has lots of confusing options involving tradeoffs that arent always clear. Using an experienced travel agent is like getting a FREE expert who knows everything about the Disney Cruise Line and is happy to walk you through the process and offer advice.
The travel agency we personally recommend here on MouseSavers.com,Small World Vacations, has some of the most experienced agents in the industry. The agents who handle cruise bookings for Small World have been on multiple Disney cruises, and know a truly astonishing amount about all four ships, the various Disney ports of call and all the common itineraries . Many of them are Platinum members of Disneys Castaway Club, meaning that they have personally been on 10 or more Disney cruises! They each have a direct phone number and email address they give out to their clients, so you can mail them questions or requests any time.