My husband and I wanted to take our five children to Walt Disney World in Orlando, Florida.
Coming from Michigan we knew it would be expensive. We went during “off season” and lodged in places where children stayed free. We also had a van that we packed with a cooler filled with drinks, milk and juices and peanut butter and jelly and sandwich fixings. We replenished as we traveled and always added fresh ice at night. We would stop at roadside parks and have lunch. Breakfast was cereal and bagels in our hotel rooms. We did eat out once a day for dinner.
Also as we entered each state we stopped at the tourist information area to pick up coupon books that gave us discounts on attractions, hotels or motels and also restaurants.
Through my husband’s credit union we got discount tickets to Walt Disney World. We also stayed two nights right on the beach at Daytona. The hotel prices were very reasonable – due to off-season rates.
With food, gas, and lodging, we spent less then $100 a day for seven people. The children also saved their money to spend on trinkets, this way they were not begging us to pay for stuff.
I know some people have told us it would have been cheaper to camp. But by going our way, we didn’t have to purchase camping equipment or pull a trailer that would have used more gas. And, we still would have had to pay for campground fees. I also really enjoyed having a clean room, with baths for the kids, and didn’t have to cook or pick up anything for a week.