What is your daily budget?

I’m planning my June trip (yay!) and for the first time ever I’m trying to be a grown-up and work to a budget rather than just booking everything I want. (See how I’ve grown! Aren’t you proud?)

So what is your daily budget (per person) for food and sundries? (Not including event tickets, Genie / LL, Express Passes, etc, which have separate budgets in my spreadsheet.)

I’m thinking of $120 (plus extra for Lyfts).



I know, not helpful, but it was the first thing I thought of. Also, it’s pretty close to the truth.


Historically, I’ve been the same. This is a new experiment in adulting.


I spend far too much time adulting in real life. Disney is my time off!


I think that’s a very fair estimate. I budget more on the flights and accommodations. When I get there I pretty much do what I want and spend what I want. I’m not a super extravagant person so it’s normally fine, but this last trip. Oof.

I do have certain limits I put on things though. Like I’m not taking a $20+ lift at park close, but if I spend $25 on 2 different rides in a day that’s fine.

100% agree!

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I’m actually slightly excited about it. Necessity is the mother of invention. It’s too easy to throw money at Disney. And I really want to branch out and try new stuff, much of which will be cheaper than I’ve typically spent in the past.

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My budget depends on my initial dining plans and who I am traveling with. . If I am doing a lot of signature dining with my sister, or in the past with my son, $200 a day per person might be closer to what I plan. My next trip I am traveling with someone that $75 per person will be reasonable (we will split one entree at most TS meals).

I don’t buy souvenirs but That would be above the food.

I am staying DVC. Waters, breakfast food, and gin have been ordered and not counted in my budget.


I don’t necessarily have a budget, but I don’t necessarily just spend on whatever I could possibly want.

I plan my TS dining ahead of time, know that I generally don’t go crazy on snacks, and have an idea of what kind if CS I would want to do (if any).

As far as souvenirs, I could easily walk out with entire stores, but try and exercise some self-control. An ornament or two, magnet, some t-shirts, and an occasional splurge (next month I will be looking for the 50th anniversary Monorail set).

I look at it this way, I am on vacation and I want to relax, eat good food, and have fun. I don’t go crazy, but I also don’t scrimp if "splurging’ is worth it.

That all said, it has been easier to splurge with gift cards. Both for my October trip and my visit next month my meals and spending money consists of gift cards I earned through performance awards at work. Because the gift cards were awards, it feels like “found” money and gives me a bit more freedom to splurge.


Well I have a very clearly controlled budget for my upcoming trip and…

wait… whazzat?

and now I go

ETA: ok I found an article about this monorail. And it looks like a stellar replacement for my weary one from 2000. I presume it’s only sold in the parks?


I haven’t seen it at ShopDisney since it debuted, so I assume only in the parks.

Our current monorail set is around the same age. We only set it up around the tree each year so it is still running, but the box is just hanging on by a thread!

I am hoping to find one when I am there in a few weeks, and will just have WDW ship it home.

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I would say it depends on how you want to stick to a budget to save money versus just covering what you want to spend.

I would say it is reasonable to do $15 for breakfast (or less), $20 for lunch (or less), and $30 for dinner (more or less). Add in a snack for, say, $10…that comes to $75/day for food. Then, add in extra for souvenirs, based on what you will realistically want to get.

If you set the budget, you then plan accordingly. That means don’t book V&As, since that clearly puts you over budget. If you go over slightly on day, eat more cheaply the next.

I do find it kind of fun to figure out how to eat decently while staying under budget. We usually succeed, and end up with some extra money at the end of if the trip to splurge on something while staying on budget. (That’s the nice thing with a planned budget, is you can splurge without guilt if you know you already have the money to spend!)

When I used to do trips years ago without careful budgeting, I found the experience far less enjoyable knowing I would end up back home with a credit card bill above and beyond what we should have/could have had. Having a budget, I saved that amount and had it in my accounts before leaving for the trip. During the trip I could spend “freely”…as long as it kept me within that budget!


I don’t exactly budget dollars for food. I budget meal types. It’s going to cost what it costs, but I want each meal to feel special and not overdo it. I also don’t want to gorge myself on snacks.

So usually my philosophy is one TS per day, one QS, and a light breakfast of grocery items at the hotel room. I then back into what that’s going to cost just so I have a general idea. But food is the least expensive aspect of my vacation for my family at this stage.


So I’ve come up with a plan which is dollar and calorie friendly. Big breakfast at around 10-11am, then dinner at around 5pm. With a snack allowed during the day.

I figure these times will also make ADRs easier to get. All the breakfasts are in hotels, which has the bonus of giving me an excuse to visit them. Two of the dinners are in hotels and the benefit of taking them early is that I will have time to leave the parks, have dinner, and then return for the last few hours / fireworks.

I even went to the trouble of looking up menus and prices and the $120 a day budget works well. Breakfast is about $40, snacks and merch $20, and dinner $60 — but that figure is an average: the hotel dinners will be more like $90, balanced by in-park dinners (e.g. Satu’li) of $30.


Budget? What Budget?! That is the one thing I never think about. When I’m on vacation at Disney, it’s get whatever you want whenever you want it!


$120 seems low when you throw in TS restaurants. But $40 seems high for breakfast - unless it’s a character meal.


I’ve priced it up. I’m maybe rounding a little but hotel breakfasts are typically about $25 plus drink plus tax plus tip. So not a million miles away from $40. The two big TS dinners I have planned (Citrico’s and Toledo) I’m limiting myself to two courses because nobody needs three.


We are at WDW now. Three adults enjoying light meals and cocktails/wine/beers etc during the day and aperitifs and wine with supper. We have eaten at Boathouse, Jaleo, HBD, Tiffins, Morimoto Asia, Chef Art, Wolfgang Puck, WBG, Via Napoli, GF cafe etc., and everyone is ordering what they wish to eat and drink. We almost always enjoy a starter and main course. I budgeted $140 per person and we have easily stayed within that, save for one dinner at Bull and Bear (well worth the money). The greatest ‘eater’ of money is Epcot and the festival stalls. The best bargain, a bottle of champagne from Amerettis (?) in DS. $ 38 for a normal sized bottle, provided in a pretty bag with three flutes. AP discount is generally 10%, which somehow I see as a 50% contribution to the tip. WP has a very good value and delicious, whole boned sea bass.


Hate to say it but the budgeting thing is now an issue- never really worried about it as we are a dining plan family I would pre-purchase discounted gift cards monthly before our trips…anything like alcohol or lounges that weren’t DP we used TiWL for a discount.

Our post Covid trips made me realize how much of a savings that was for our family. We are used to pocket cash and a few bucks in souvenirs.

Even trying to put the equivalent amounts per person per day on a gift card left us way over what was intended.


I hate financial surprises. So when it comes to food, I actually take the time to look up the menu prices on MDE ahead of time for each meal at each restaurant we want to enjoy. Add a little extra for taxes and gratuity, and we seldom if ever leave WDW with a financial hangover yet to be paid. :money_mouth_face: