Today I’m starting a new series on the blog. I’ll be sharing with you a breakdown of how our family funds our family vacations in our Disney Savings Fund Report on a monthly basis. I’ll be doing this by creating a monthly savings and earning report on the blog.
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As I’ve previously discussed, we began our family vacation goals back in 2011. I began to learn about couponing to Disney and finding ways to make money online so that we could afford an enjoyable trip. We didn’t want the added stress of where the money was going to be coming from.
Here is why I’m publishing these monthly reports:
Even though we are well into the month of August, I wanted to give you a quick update on my Disney fund! My intent with these posts that I’m sharing, is that they will hopefully help those families on a budget learn how they can go on a family vacation for free or practically free. It is possible.
Planning for Fall Break 2018
Our next trip- 3-Day park hopper w/Premium Character dining and 8 nights at Staybridge hotel.
2018 Cost for 3 adults (our son is bringing a friend) and 3 children (our daughter is bringing a friend) = $5,446.05
This trip will be planned a little different. We are going during Fall break and are planning a couple of days where we do Mickey’s Halloween Party Night. These tickets require a separate purchase and since we want to do two Mickey Halloween nights, these will be two additional days at Disney. I have not included these tickets in the total cost above. They are to be purchased in July of next year when the dates for Mickey’s Halloween party 2018 are released. I can only estimate that those tickets will cost us around $105 each person for each night.
July 2017 Disney Savings Fund Report
July was a fairly good month for us…I was able to add $ 446.67 to our fund, YAY!! This allowed me to put the $200 deposit required when booking the trip on July 20th.That is when Disney released the Fall 2018 packages. Plus, I was able to earn some other different types of gift cards to use while on our trip. Here is how I will do the breakdown:
- No rebate checks this month. I don’t do a whole lot of these types of checks unless it’s something I’m buying and I feel it’s a good deal.
Deposit from Paychecks =$45.00
- I decided on trying the $3 a week saving challenge. I don’t usually keep a whole lot extra cash around so I tend to add the weeks up in between pay periods. Since I get paid on the 15th and on the last day of the month, It’s easier for us to save a totaled amount rather than on a weekly basis. We tend to save and use only these funds in the event of an emergency.
- I earned enough points in the month of July to redeem 4 $25.00 e-Mastercards and a $15.00 e-Visa card. These went straight to the Disney Vacation Account*. You can earn a lot of different things with Swagbucks.
- This is cash back program from purchasing grocery staples like milk, fruit, and veggies. I don’t rely too much on this app because I find that it doesn’t always offer cash back on the items my family uses on a regular basis. Last year, I think I earned $25 in cashback. This usually goes straight to our cash envelope for the trip.
Receipt Pal =$20.00
- This is a fabulous app! Every time I fill up a card that holds 4 receipt photos, I earn 100 points. Redeemable for gift cards like Starbucks or Target and even some others. Since I’m trying to build up our grocery shopping money for the trip I’m aiming for Target e-cards. Once I reach a certain number of points in Receipt Pal, I redeem those points for a virtual visa card. Then turn it around for a Target e-card. Total for Target =$20.00
Walgreens app = $8.00
- This is another app that small savings add up. Every online or in-store purchase earns you points and if you have a healthy tracker like the Fitbit, you also earn points for being active. I could either use these funds to purchase a Disney gift card or items needed for our trip like toiletries.
- This is a fairly new app for me since I just joined in the month of August. But it ended up syncing some of my July activity. So far, I’ve earned 3,149 points. It sinks with your Fitbit and once you reach 10,000 points, you can redeem those points for a $10.00 reward.
Achievemint lets you earn rewards with the health and fitness apps you already own, use, and love. They even offer surveys. Hopefully by the end of this month, I’ll be closer to $10,000 points to give you more insight on this app.
Spare Change Jar =$25.00
- Any extra spare change goes directly into our Disney savings jar. Our first year going, we had $80 in our jar.
*Disney Savings Account -$23.71
- For every $1000 that you apply towards your payment on your Disney vacation, the Disney Vacation Account rewards you $20. I was able to redeem one last $20 Disney gift card bonus, plus there was $3.71 left in my account before it was shut down. So they just sent me a Disney e-gift card. These will go towards souvenirs.
I was really disappointed when I found out this program was ending. It was a great way to store the savings without spending it.
MyGiftCardPlus = Applebee’s =$25.00
- We ended up coming home with $50 in Applebee’s gift cards leftover from our last trip. The hubby and I used one $25 gift card for a lunch date leaving $25 for Applebee’s. I purchased these gift cards through points I earned for virtual Visa or Mastercard on Swagbucks and was in return rewarded more points for the purchases. I earned $150 for Applebee’s on our last trip. Because Applebee’s has a great affordable menu, we’ll be aiming for more gift cards for our next trip.
For those interested on How To Plan A Family Vacation On A Budget – for those interested in learning how to vacation on a budget.
Join Us On Our Journey……
So that’s it for the July 2017 Disney Saving Report. Follow along each month as we detail our money vacation/holiday saving efforts on the blog. I hope you’ll follow along with us as I share how our family is able to go to Disneyland on a budget.
Remember, this is something that YOU can duplicate too.You just need to have a plan in place and the persistence to pull it off.
We’d love to hear about YOUR saving for vacation journey in the comments below.
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