Yesterday I talked about how to get your kids excited before you go to Disney. Today I have 5 tricks up my sleeve for once you get there! The best benefit of these tricks is that they'll help you save a little money in the process because you'll be taking advantage of sales vs. buying at the inflated prices on site.
1. Pre-shop for souvenirs at the Disney Outlet: We are lucky enough to have an official outlet near us. If that doesn't apply to you, start stalking the clearance bins at your local Disney Store. When I first popped into the store with this goal in mind, I was so confused. Isn't the whole point of a souvenir that you picked it out on your trip and brought it home? It made no sense to me to pre-shop for these items even if they were significantly cheaper than at the parks.
Enter the nicest sales clerk I've ever met. This kind lady gave me SO many ideas for our trip. She talked me into picking up Disney character bubble blowers for entertaining the kids while we stand in line. I plan to keep them in our backpack and only pull them out as a surprise at the last minute. I also got each girl a light-up battery operated fan for cooling off during the hot days and for light sticks during the evening parades. Each of these things was priced at less than half what we would have spent at the park.
2. Character T-shirts: Where is it more fun to wear a Mickey Mouse shirt than AT the park? All the fun of it is in wearing it on vacation, right? I'm a stickler for washing all items of clothing before the girls wear them, so this had a sanitary benefit to it as well! I got clearance priced shirts at the outlet mentioned above, but I know that Kohl's, Old Navy, Target, and Walmart all carry Disney-themed apparel as well. I wrapped up the Peanut's t-shirt as one of her birthday gifts and used it to announce that we were going on our trip but you could easily sneak these into suitcases only to be given upon arrival or for wearing on the trip there.
3. Character Pajamas: My girls LOVE love love to wear matching pajamas. I thought they'd be over the moon about wearing Disney jammies on our vacation so I picked up a pair of them at the outlet as well. I'm going to wash them all up and hide them until our first night in Orlando.
4. Swim Gear: I lucked out and hit the outlet when they were having a sale on swimming gear. I picked up Mickey Mouse goggles for the Peanut and a tote bag for swimming gear for $6 total. I also found red and white polka dot sunglasses and sunhats at Gymboree (thank you Gymbucks!) Thankfully the Disney color palette makes it super easy to find things that feel like "official" gear at a much cheaper price! Just think Red, White, Black, and Polka Dotted and you're all good! And with our trip just before the start of summer, they'll be using these items all summer long. Practical!
5. Don't forget mom and dad!: The biggest surprise of all for our kids will be the morning daddy shows up with a big bright Mickey on his shirt. Handyman Tim does NOT dress like this but agreed to wear a themed shirt I found at the outlet during our vacation. I love his playful attitude, anything for his girls! I know the Peanut will be thrilled to be matching her daddy. This is such a special phase and I know it won't last forever. I'm so grateful we're taking advantage of her sweet preference for dressing alike now while she loves it.