Food within the theme parks is expensive and can add up quickly, so eat most of your meals outside of the parks. If your rental vacation home/condo has a cooler you can pack it up with your own food and keep it in the trunk of your vehicle for “lunch time”. If your accommodations allow, you can fix an easy breakfast before heading out for the day. For your other meals, consider the many fast food chains and chain restaurants that Orlando has to offer. Kid’s value meals are fairly inexpensive and can be a great option.
During the times that you will be eating inside the park, it is important to remember that while pricey, the portion sizes are quite large so share an entrée amongst to family members, or let the kids share with the adults. Drinks can really add up, so again two straws to a drink or better yet, bring your own bottled water or juice which can be refilled at the many water fountains in the parks. In addition, lunches are always cheaper than dinner so fill up at lunch time and it will keep you going into the early evening. Make sure to bring along some plastic sealable sandwich bags for the extras your kids don’t finish like snacks, fruit or chips. These can be eaten later throughout the day. Always try to bring some nuts, crackers, cookies or other items to keep hungry kiddies happy during the long day.
Be sure to buy such necessities as sunscreen, diapers, blank video tapes, batteries, film and other such items at home or near your accommodations. These things are all available in the theme parks, but at premium prices. Plus, you’ll save precious vacation time as you won’t have to go from shop to shop looking for the needed items.
In terms of souvenirs, hold off on any large purchases until the very last day of your trip. By that time you will know what you want and you won’t waste your money on an impulse buy. Similarly, if a souvenir costs more than $15, make sure it serves a practical purpose. Instead of stuffed animals or princess wands, steer the kids toward character-themed slippers, pajamas, backpacks or a beach towel. Think about the size of space you’ve left for souvenirs in your luggage also to avoid frustrating before heading back to the airport.
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