Trying to decide if I want an AP

Hey guys!

I am trying to decide if I want to get an AP for this year. At first it was something I never thought about getting. I have always ignored the AP posts because it never applied to me. I’m from Maryland so I always just thought I was too far away.

I recently made a friend in MD who is even more obsessed with Disney than I am. She has had an AP for the last three years! She is the one that planted the AP seed in my brain.

I was supposed to go to Disney during Irma but that obviously got postponed. So I still have my tickets for that trip. I have another friend that wants me to go with them for a few days. And now I have this new friend with an AP that wants me to go with her.

So now I’m trying to decide if I should just get an AP. I looked at JJT’s excel sheet and it looks like with those three trips I would come out saving just a little bit of money. Of course if I got an AP I would want to go even more!

So I have kind of decided that if I take 4 short trips in a year and get an AP. I would probably spend $3,000+ during the year on Disney. I’m just trying to decide if that is worth it to me. I’m only 23 years old so it’s not like I have a ton of money saved up for these types of things.

Does anyone have any tips on saving money for this? I think if I could find a way to justify 4+ flights to FL I could make the decision a lot easier.

I don’t really understand the other discounts that come with an AP. How often can you get a discount on a value resort?

I’m all ears (lol) for everyone’s opinions and tips! My friends and family would look at me like I was crazy if I told them I was thinking about getting an AP to DW. So thank you all very much!!

Also I can use my one day AK ticket I have and upgrade that to part of an AP right?

Glad my spreadsheet was helpful!

Mousesavers has useful info on AP discounts they keep updated:

For saving money, you could look into using credit card rewards programs to get free or discounted stays etc. I used the Chase Visa and Barclaycard Arrival MasterCards rewards this year to save a ton of money.

Of course, you’ll want to read up on credit score info, how to manage it and how possibly getting multiple credit cards might affect your score, but if you’d like to go down that rabbit hole I have a forum post with my experience doing it for our last trip:

Pre Trip Report or How I Embraced Credit Card Rewards and Learned to Love Them

I recently got an annual pass. Living in Nashville I wasn’t sure it was worth it. We decided to do it because we have two trips within a year. We are going at the end of this month and then again at the end of September 2018. When we go we usually get 4 day park hoppers which are $425. The annual pass is $780. So by going twice we would have spent $850 if we had not gotten the annual pass. We also always get Memory Maker and with that now included with an annual pass that was even more savings. We normally only go about every 18 months or so, but are sneaking in another trip before my DS turns 3 and we have to pay for him.

We were wavering, but we are also DVC members and they announced a discount where the annual pass was $560. We couldn’t pass it up! So I would say just look at it and see what works for you. I don’t know what airport you fly out of in Maryland, but we used to live in Norfolk, VA and had to connect through Baltimore through to get anywhere and there were always GREAT deals on Baltimore to Orlando. We found some as cheap as $69 each way when Southwest had their sales. Just something to think about!

I am in the same boat as you. We are going twice this year, once with each side of our families over the Thanksgiving and Christmas. Upgrading to AP makes complete sense for us, but I have no doubt will lead us to go to Disney more before next November in an effort to fully make use of the “free” entry into the parks. In the end, having the AP will cost us more because we will spend more on flights and hotel and meals than we would if we limited ourselves to two trips. But, I’m definitely willing to pay that for this fabulous opportunity. You definitely could save money on flights if you are willing to travel during the week. Also, if you volunteer to give up your seat on an overbooked flight that can help get you future plane tickets. We had an 8 hour delay on our last flight home and received a $200 credit per family member. You could also make us of Prime Now to get food delivered to your room to help offset meal costs. Finally, I would recommend looking at the agency exclusive discounts from Magical Vacations Travel as they often have really great deals. I’ll be interested to hear what you decide!

I think the last post covered some of what I was going to say. One other thing. Many airline credit cards give you like 50,000 sky miles toward a flight to take out there credit card and join their sky miles club such as Delta airlines or United. It costs about $100 a year thereafter to keep the card but you get a free baggage check for each flight. We find that even though we only do Disney once a year it is worth the cost for the two of us. Just another way to save. Don’t know if you have Alligent airline where you live but they offer deep discount flights to the Orlando area although they fly into Sanford Fl which I believe is about 40 miles from Disney World. As we don’t want to keep a rental car we don’t use them and fly Delta instead. If you keep your eyes open there prices change daily. Used to be you could get a travel agency to look for you but those days are gone. Magical Vacations Travel books convention reservations guaranteeing Disney Lots of 10 rooms for at least three days. If they don’t fill them all they eat the cost and Disney still gets paid either way. Because of this Disney gives a 50% discount on the room portion of your vacation if you book via MVT. We are doing this for the first time in March and saving $1000. Good luck with your vacation plans

My sister and her family live 21 hours from Orlando, where I live. They are annual passholders and I’ve gotten to see them four times this year. Maybe it would be cheaper to take the train? They drive three out of their four trips and use their Disney Rewards to make it worth it. Personally, I wouldn’t do it until I had a higher income and all debts paid off if it were me. But, I would save, save, save for the following year or two and then do it.

We used to live in Iowa and we would eat oatmeal for breakfast and drive old cars and save our money for our Disney World Trips which we took every three years. Hope that helps.

Would you be willing to share your spreadsheet again or point me towards the post?


You can find it directly here.

That “Worth It?” spreadsheet came out of my original forum post Spreadsheet: Best Tix to Buy to Maximum Savings on AP Upgrade which links to my sheet that calculates the best discounted reseller tickets to buy when you plan to upgrade to AP.

There’s a version of the Worth It? sheet still embedded in that Maximum Discount sheet, but the first link above goes to a free-standing version where you can enter all your info in one place.

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Thank you very much!

That’s how I am. I have an older car, no debt, save almost all of my money, and work overtime whenever I can. It just happens to be a year I know a lot of people going that have asked me to joint them.

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I’m from NJ and with three of us to fly to Orlando would cost us over $800. So we (or should I say I) drive straight through it takes me about 18 hours, and costs around $300 in gas round trip. We leave at night this way I don’t hit traffic in DC. I try to leave around 6/7 pm and would get to Orlando for lunch with a stop for breakfast in GA. So what I’m saying is if you have a few people to go with you, drive and save some money. You won’t have to rent a car when your there and you can go to other parks and you won’t have to rely on WDW buses.Time wise for me it’s 1 hour to the airport, 2 hours in the airport, 3 - 3 1/2 hours in the air, 2 hours from landing to WDW. It could be 9 hours just dealing with airport stuff


I don’t understand the 50% off for MTV. Can you explain it in more detail? That sounds very interesting! Thanks!

I like that idea but… I have an older car. I don’t think it would make it from MD to FL lol. I plan on getting a new car with in the next year sometime. So maybe that will change.

Basically MVT buys a certain number of rooms on certain days. As a result of buying in bulk they get big discounts from WDW and then can pass those savings onto you allowing you to get a room for far less than rack rate. Seems an interesting option that I’m checking out for our next trip, if I can get the dates to fit MVT’s availability.

I will have to look into that!! Thanks a bunch!!

MVT has saved our family a lot of money on rooms. I believe their rates can often beat an AP room only discount if your dates work.