Walt Disney World vacation packages come in all sizes, designed to fit multiple travel styles and budgets. From packages with bundled ground transportation to all-inclusive deals, you’re bound to find a package to Walt Disney World to make your trip both magical and efficient.
The question many travelers ask is whether they need to book a Walt Disney World vacation package or if it’s better to make reservations a la carte. To help you decide, we’re breaking down the benefits of booking a package to Walt Disney World.
What Is Included in a Walt Disney World Vacation Package?
When booking a package to Walt Disney World, you are able to roll a number of vacation elements into a single unit. For most people, this means bundling their tickets and resort hotel into a single cost.
However, the flexibility associated with a Walt Disney World vacation package means you can also include the cost of your ground transportation as well as other extras. To break it down, imagine that you want to book a 6-night stay at Port Orleans, a Disney World moderate hotel.
You could book your hotel in one reservation and then separately purchase theme park tickets. Or, you could purchase both in a single transaction called a package.
With a Walt Disney World vacation package, you also have the added advantage of purchasing travel insurance, Disney’s Memory Maker, transportation to and from the airport as well as magical extras, such as a round of golf. It’s the most simple and convenient way to plan and reserve Disney World travel.
Packages to Walt Disney World, What Are the Advantages?
As discussed, when purchasing a package to Walt Disney World, you’re rolling all of the elements associated with your trip into a single transaction. This is beneficial for a number of reasons:
Fewer Up-Front Costs
First, you’ll only be required to make a $200 deposit to reserve your package. When you book a Disney World resort separately, you’ll be charged up front for one night’s stay to hold the reservation. Depending on the resort you book, this could easily be double the cost of a package down payment or more, but there are other benefits as well.
Often, guests to Disney World will wait until closer to their travel dates and purchase their tickets ala carte. While this allows them to put off paying the full purchase cost until closer to their travel dates, it could leave them without a spot in the parks.
In 2023, all guests to Disney World are required to make park reservations. These can fill up quickly as travel dates approach, so most people book early.
But here’s the catch. You need to have a theme park ticket before you can make your reservation. By including your tickets in your Walt Disney World vacation package, you will have planning access to your tickets right away, but will still be able to put off paying the full purchase price until a later date.
Keep in mind, that while the $200 deposit will stand as an inititial down payment for most package elements, you will be asked to pay in full for any extras at the time of booking, such as travel insurance and Memory Maker. However, this would be true whether you booked these services separately or include them in your package.
If you aren’t ready to pay for extra add-ons to your package to Walt Disney World at the time of purchase, you can always add them later by contacting your Disney World travel agent. The same holds true if you simply decide later on that you want to add Memory Maker, ground transportation or other value-added benefits.
Package to Walt Disney World Offers Payment Flexibility
All Walt Disney World vacation packages must be paid in full 30 days before your arrival date. However, if you’re on a budget or prefer to make regular payments, you can easily set up a payment plan by booking your vacation through a travel agent specializing in Disney World vacations.
Your travel agent can set up a personalized payment plan, according to your needs, whether it be weekly, biweekly, monthly or whatever you choose. For guests booking reservations into the next year, a payment plan provides a nice runway for spreading out the cost and helping families afford a trip to Disney World easier.
Flexible Cancellation Policies with Package Convenience
Packages to Walt Disney World come with flexible cancellation and change policies. Guests may cancel up to 30 days before arrival and receive a refund of all monies paid, minus any non-refundable portions of a travel protection policy or other third-party charges where applicable.
If you need to cancel your package between 2 and 29 days before your arrival, you will be credited any monies paid (minus any non-refundable portions of a travel protection policy or other third-party charges where applicable) less the $200 deposit.
Walt Disney World Vacation Package Easy Change Policies
Planning a Disney World vacation can be a complex endeavor. Many guests book months in advance to secure special discounts or resorts for certain dates. So, what happens if plans change?
With a package to Walt Disney World, you’re able to make changes up to 30 days before arrival. This includes swapping out a guest who can’t make it with another traveler, changing travel dates, and selecting new accommodations or party size.
Keep in mind, if any change results in a higher cost to your travel arrangements, you will be responsible for the additional charges, but you will not be required to pay a change fee. Likewise, if the changes made result in a decrease in package cost, you will receive a refund of any monies already paid that result in an overage.
For changes made 30 days or less prior to arrival, there is a $50 change fee.
Booking a Walt Disney World vacation package also allows you to cancel and receive a refund on the cost of your theme park tickets. Tickets purchased separately are non-refundable.
When thinking about cancelations, keep in mind that many changes require a call to Disney World Travel. That means waiting on hold for the next available representative. To streamline their package purchase, many Disney World guests book through a Disney vacation planner or travel agent specializing in Disney vacations. That way, if changes are needed, your vacation planner can make these for you with far less hassle.
Receive a Free No Obligation Package Quote
We’ve teamed up with Mickey World Travel as a Connecticut-based travel agent to bring our expertise in Disney World travel planning to your next vacation. Request a free, no obligation package quote, and let us help you plan your Disney World adventure! You won’t pay more, but the value you’ll receive is priceless.
Easy Setup of Your My Disney Experience Account
With a Walt Disney World vacation package, it’s easy to set up a My Disney Experience account or add your vacation to an existing one. Simply enter your reservation confirmation number and link the tickets associated with your package to the appropriate members of your party.
If you book extras, such as Memory Maker, these will also automatically sync with your account once you add your confirmation number, meaning all of your precious photos taken on rides or with PhotoPass photographers, will appear in your My Disney Experience account for download.
Disney World Vacation Packages Include Magical Extras
When booking a Disney World vacation package that includes a Disney owned resort hotel, you’ll receive Magical Extras that aren’t available with a la carte bookings. If you book a Disney World vacation package in 2023, you’ll receive the following Magical Extras:
- Receive four (4) vouchers per package, valid for one (1) 18 hole round of miniature golf on one (1) day for one (1) guest at either Disney’s Winter Summerland Miniature Golf Course or Disney’s Fantasia Gardens Miniature Golf Course.
- Receive four (4) vouchers per package, each voucher valid for one (1) general admission to ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex on one (1) day for ONE (1) guest. Valid only on event days.
- Receive 10% off the non-discounted price of bowling (walk-in bowling only), receive 10% on the purchase of food and non-alcoholic beverages (dine-in only), and receive 10% off the non-discounted price of merchandise at Splitsville Luxury Lanes located in Disney Springs West Side.
- Receive 15% off food & non-alcoholic beverages at City Works Eatery & Pour House located at Disney Springs West Side.
- Receive a Complimentary Ghirardelli® Chocolate Bar with purchase of any Specialty Sundae at Ghirardelli® Soda Fountain & Chocolate Shop located in the Disney Springs Marketplace. Limit one per person, cannot be combined with any other offers.
- Receive 20% off entire purchase, excluding alcohol at Joffrey’s Coffee and Tea Company® at the following locations at Walt Disney World® Resort: Magic Kingdom Park, EPCOT, Disney’s Animal Kingdom Theme Park, Disney’s Hollywood Studios, Disney’s Blizzard Beach Water Park, Disney’s Typhoon Lagoon Water Park, ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex, Disney Skyliner and Disney Springs The Landing including Joffrey’s Coffee & Tea Company® store, or purchase online at JOFFERYS.com using coupon code: travel23.
- Receive 20% off Food & Non-Alcoholic Beverages at Paddlefish located at Disney Springs The Landing.
- Receive 10% off adult entrees at T-REX® located in the Disney Springs Marketplace.
- Buy 5 items and get the 6th free! Offer only available at The Spice & Tea Exchange® located in the Disney Springs Marketplace. One per Guest.
- Receive 10% off your entire purchase at Balocoloc Venian Masks. This offer is only available at the Italy World Showcase Pavilion location in EPCOT.
- Receive 10% off entire purchase, excluding sale items, at Basin located at Disney Springs Marketplace or Basin White located in Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort & Spa.
- Receive 15% off entire purchase at Chapel Hats located at Disney Springs® the Landings.
- Receive 15% off purchases of $30 or more at Coca-Cola Store located at Disney Springs Town Center.
- Receive 10% off purchases at the Crystal Arts by Arribas Brothers stores at Disney Springs Marketplace, Magic Kingdom Park and EPCOT. Exclusions apply.
- Receive 15% off entire purchase at Just Fun Socks located at Disney Springs the Landings.
- Visit Kendra Scott located at Disney Springs® Town Center and receive 15% off your entire purchase!
- Receive 10% off non-discounted merchandise at Sugarboo & Co. located at Disney Springs Town Center.
- Receive 15% off the non-discounted price of merchandise at Volcom® located at Disney Springs® Town Center.
For more information, view this downloadable guide to 2023 Magical Extras.
Magical Extras included in 2024 Disney World vacation packages are similar to those found in 2023 packages. Package bookings for 2024 begin on May 31, 2023 and include the following benefits:
- 4 miniature golf admission vouchers per package, redeemable at either Disney’s Winter Summerland Miniature Golf Course or Disney’s Fantasia Gardens Miniature Golf Course.
- 4 Admission vouchers per package to ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex
- A 10% discount at select restaurants, stores and experiences (Basin, City Works Eatery &Pour House, Crystal Arts by Arribas Brothers, House of Blues Restaurant & Bar, Paradiso 57, Rainforest Café, Ricoh Business Centers, Splitsville Luxury Lanes, Sugarboo & Company, Surrey bike rentals at Disney resort hotels, The BOATHOUSE, T-REX)
- 15% discount at select restaurants, stores and experiences (Chapel Hats, Coco-Cola Store, Just Fun Socks, Kendra Scott, Superdry, Volcom)
- 20% discount at select restaurants, stores and experiences (Edward Beiner and Joffrey’s Coffee & Tea Company)
- Special offers at the Spice & Tea Exchange and Wetzel’s Pretzels
Packages Are Available for Many Offsite Resorts
When booking a trip to Disney World, many vacationers assume they are limited to reserving Disney World resorts if they want to book a package. Fortunately, Disney World offers package options that include a number of offsite hotels, including popular chains such as Hyatt, Hilton and Marriott.
Hotels available for package reservations will hold a special designation, such as Good Neighbor Hotels, indicating that they meet Disney World’s stringent quality standards and offer a required set of amenities. However, you may not receive the same perks as you when booking a Disney World resort hotel, depending on where you choose to stay.
Walt Disney World Vacation Package Caveats
As with anything, there are some things you should know before booking a vacation package to Walt Disney World. For instance, not all costs associated with your Disney resort stay will be included in the cost of your package.
You may see additional charges on your checkout statement, including the purchase of Genie+ or Individual Lightning Lane reservations, as well as any purchases or restaurant tabs you charge to the credit card on file with your room.
Second, while MagicBands are available for guests booking a Walt Disney World vacation package or hotel stay, they are no longer included in the cost of your package. Anyone wishing to use MagicBands will need to make a separate MagicBand purchase prior to arrival through their My Disney Experience account, Shop Disney or after arriving at Disney World.
HINT: You can usually purchase MagicBands at a discounted cost if you link your package reservation to your My Disney Experience account. Just visit My Disney Experience from a computer, and you should be offered the chance to pre-order Magic Bands at a cut rate. We’ve seen plain color bands as low as $10 a piece. Pre-ordered MagicBands will ship to your home before the start of your vacation.
Overall, booking a package to Walt Disney World is a convenient way to plan your travel, providing you the opportunity to consolidate your costs and arrangements in one convenient package.