What's your cutoff to make it worth it?

I am not a person that’s driven by saving a couple of dollars. I don’t use coupons and never really have, and I don’t do any of the points things except Southwest (and even then, only half-assed).

I see people scrambling for discount Disney gift cards for 5% savings on average, which on $200 is $10 and on $500 is $25. Doesn’t get me excited. Not even a little bit.

I just saw in another thread where, after rebooking and repurchasing tickets someone saved $32 with the Summer 2023 Disney Visa cardholder discount. It sounded like a lot of work to me (no judgment on that poster if they have found there way here, you do you and go get 'em too!). Another poster there reworked their dates and took on a split stay (okay their savings was $900 total - that would probably make me think about doing that too).

10% off a stay at a Value? Meh. Not worth shifting my dates for what feels like pennies to me

10% off merch with my DVC card? Eh. If I feel like digging it out sure. But $5 off a sweatshirt is not going to make or break my bank or my vacation.

A LOT of these things sound like a lot of work for such a very small return.

For me, I get into it when it’s 25% or more.

So I got to wondering: what kind of savings makes it worth your effort?


I am very much in line with your way of thinking. I personally wouldn’t stay deluxe because the cost is ridiculous for what you get, but I wouldn’t look for a discount on a mod unless it was significant.


For me it depends on what it is and how much time is involved. I did the gift card thing once and I only saved a little bit and it seemed like a lot of effort. Now for Southwest, if I have a flight booked I am checking almost once a day every day to see if the flight price has dropped and then I will rebook at the lower price. I don’t like Southwest but it’s this never ending game of having credit to use so I keep using them. It’s so quick to check the price and rebook that I will always do that.


Ohhhhh this thread might get as heated as the tipping thread :face_with_peeking_eye:

For me - I don’t know that any of the cost savings methods that used for my last trip were “worth it” per se, BUT they did stretch my budget. I am super cost conscious and I struggled with how much our weeklong Disney trip cost. One week at Disney was $1500 more than at 12-day east coast road trip.

I accumulated about $2000 in gift cards which I got for 10% off total. That was $200 back in my pocket.

I worked the Disney visa points so we had quite a few rewards dollars to use for the trip.

I wouldn’t necessarily change my dates for savings at a value, but I would 100% make the effort to apply any discounts that I could if they became available. Our resort price went down $150 for the our trip and it was a 15 minute thing to change. Super easy.

I watch my southwest points and flights like a hawk. I 30k back in points from our Orlando trip by doing this and $200 credit for a future trip. I’m already on my phone, so this is not hard for me to check daily.

Overall, it’s not a ton of money that I saved by “hacking” BUT it did allow me to buy G+/ILL without going over budget. I was able to walk away from our trip without chipping away at future vacation budgets. Was it worth it? DH would probably say no, but he also isn’t coming up with the 2-5 year vacation financial plan. :woman_shrugging:

ETA: I also have personal guilt around this. I love Disney and would go frequently, but we also want to take the kids to see all different parts of the US. I felt guilty doing something that was not necessarily enjoyed by my DH, but, I recognize my guilt is something I have to work on.


That’s why I put the rules up.

Please review my pic


I saw the pic :slight_smile:


This one can be worthwhile. I forgot we do have that. But that requires no effort really other than using the one card.


Thank you for saying it! I’ve seen these posts as well and it always confuses me… So much work for pennies…

Here’s how I figure out, “If it’s worth it?” to me in most aspects of my life…

I know what I get paid, broken out by hour, for the job I do. So…if I’m about to do a task where I wouldn’t save that amount or more in an hour, then I skip it.

When deciding if I’m going to pay someone else to do something for me that I am capable of doing I ask, “Would I be willing to pay someone more than I make per hour to do that to save me the time & effort.”

It’s not a perfect system, but it’s a good guideline for me.

The only “Disney” saving thing I currently have is the Disney Visa. I use it as a debt card and have it auto-pay in full every month. When I do decide to go back to Disney I will have about $2K to use…


Whew! I’m glad I’m not actually alone! I thought I would be!


I say it depends on how individually the person feels on the effort expended. If its not out of the way to purchase the gift card and you are using it for things you would purchase anyway the 5% is a perk.


This was me! To be honest, it wasn’t a lot of work on my part. I saw the original post, sent it to my travel agent, and she did all the work. Was I discouraged that this new discount only saved me $32, yes. But maybe I’ll take that $32 I just saved and go buy myself a new magic band since I’m annoyed that these are no longer included in the price of tickets.

In general, I like to save money where I can. If the register rang something up for $2 more than the price sticker showed, I’ll say something (much to my children’s embarrassment). A Disney trip is expensive and we don’t go very often so I want to cram as much as I can into one week while not making us bankrupt in the process.


I like a good deal, but I can’t be bothered with the gift card thing. If I’m in a store & they are selling them at a discount I might buy a couple, but it’s not part of my trip planning. Seems like way too much work. Same with the Target stuff.

I always try to remember my DVC or AP discount in stores & restaurants. It’s easy to show (it’s now in my apple wallet) & the discounts add up. I also have the Disney Visa that I only use at Disney & for my Disney + subscription. I received a $300 statement credit & I have already racked up quite a few Disney dollars.

I am also very hesitant with the DVC point rentals. I know they can save a ton of money, but I like having flexibility and knowing I can cancel or change my dates if needed. I would do it for a night or 2, but I wouldn’t pay a ton of money with all the restrictions. I own DVC, but when I run out of points, I just do cash stays. I do always look for discounts. I won’t pay rack rate. I will stay at Hilton Disney Springs if there are no discounts.


Yes I did see that piece :wink:


100% this. I often look, but I never bite. Too much uncertainty for me


That’s fair. If we go again, I don’t know how much effort I’ll put into the gift card thing. I also thought it was somewhat of a PITA to use while there.

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Me too! DVC rentals are anxiety inducing.


Well, I shop at Target a lot. So I will often just throw a Disney gift card into the cart. I liken it to throwing a little money in your savings account each paycheck. The savings on a $25 gift card is $1.25, but it does add up over time and it is nice to pull out the gift card (I move all the balances to a physical card I have) when it’s time to take a trip or pay for a hotel deposit or a Magic Key renewal and not take the hit on my bank account or credit card. I have been known to buy $100’s in gift cards at one time to save that 5% when getting ready to purchase my AP/MK. That’s usually more like a $30 savings, which is definitely worth the five minutes it might take me to buy the cards and transfer them! To me that’s not doing a lot of “work”, though.

When I first started taking my girls to DLR, I was on a BUDGET. A serious budget. When you’ve been pinching pennies like that, it is hard to get out of the habit. When I got divorced, I was only working 1/2 time and money was really tight. What I found is that if you have time, you can find all sorts of ways to save money. Most of those are not worth it if you have a busy life with little spare time. I think these Disney discounts work the same way.


If I know I have a Disney cruise, I use any gift cards I have onboard. You can bring them to guest services on the first day & they put them on your account & use those first before charging your CC. I do not understand why the WDW hotels can’t do this. That’s another big reason I don’t bother with them.


I think you can do that at the resorts?

Or maybe you have to amass a certain amount of charges on your folio which you then have to visit the desk to pay off with your gift card before it charges your cc?


You have to go daily or some nonsense. They can’t put the gift cards on your account before you spend anything. I would never remember to go to the front desk each night.