Whenever you are planning a Disney vacation, one must account for souvenirs (and a little shopping) in their trip budget. Even if you don’t think you will spend money on Mickey clad items, chances are you will! Throughout the course of your stay you will probably purchase something from one of the many, many, many gift shops located around Disney World property. Navigating the many options can be difficult, however we are here to give you some tips on shopping at Disney World!
Shopping At Disney World
There are SO many options for shopping at Disney World. It can be a bit overwhelming!
General Disney Merchandise
All of the theme parks have gift shops full of Disney merchandise just waiting to be bought. Some are specialized by theme while many are more generalized and sell everything from clothing and jewelry to kitchenware’s and picture frames. Most of the parks have these merchandise locations situated at the front of the park so you are tempted to enter right when you get there and then again as you leave. At Magic Kingdom it is the Emporium, Animal Kingdom has Island Mercantile and Disney Outfitters, Hollywood Studios has Mickey’s of Hollywood and Epcot has Mouse Gear.
In addition to these primary shops, each park has additional smaller gift shops and stands that will sell an assortment of what you will find within the larger stores.
World Of Disney
World of Disney at Disney Springs has recently been updated with a new modern look and is the largest Disney store in the world. They have everything you could possibly want and the store is broken into sections based on age, gender and product type.
Disney World also has a knack for specialized gift shops. They have stores dedicated entirely to Christmas décor at both Magic Kingdom and Disney Springs. They have a Pixar store at Hollywood Studios and others that focus on high end jewelry and brand collaborations. At each of the countries of the World Showcase at Epcot you can find items specifically from that country. This includes snacks, clothing and art. In Italy you can find Italian designer bags alongside t-shirts featuring your favorite Disney character with an Italian theme. When you walk into the Mexico Pavilion you feel as if you are in an open air market featuring hand made artisan pieces. So even if a character t-shirt or pair of Mickey Ears is not your style, there is definitely more subtle choices that may catch your eye!
Shopping At Disney World Tips
- Prior to going to Disney World, it is a good idea to include souvenirs in your budget. They will add up quickly and it is easy to just buy it without really considering the bottom line. To help keep you within budget consider getting Disney gift cards prior to your trip, especially if you are going with kids. Each kid gets a $25 gift card to use as they choose throughout the trip. Set a standard that everyone gets to buy one item and stick to it.
- Another tip and big perk of being a Disney World property resort guest is that when you buy something in a park or at Disney Springs they will send it to your hotel room for you. This is fantastic if you end up with a plush of Minnie Mouse and don’t want to lug it around all day. Even more so if you splurge on something that is fragile.
- Another idea is to start a traditional souvenir to get for each of trips when you visit. Maybe a Christmas ornament with the date or a specific style figurine? I love the Alex and Ani Disney bangles and I try to get one to commemorate my trip each time I go. It is a little reminder when I am home of that particular trip!
Some logistical things to keep in mind is that if you don’t see a specific item or size in the store always ask. Not only can they check their back stock but if they don’t have it they can find it across property. There was a spirit jersey I was looking at on my last trip. After looking in store after store and them not having my size, I finally asked. I found out that there were only 3 left on property which probably meant there were not any left. Had I asked on day one I may have started looking for something else.
The most important takeaway is to always ask a cast member if you have a question. They want to help and instead of wasting time searching for an item they can tell you if they have it and if not where to find it. Souvenirs and merchandise shouldn’t be the focus of your trip. Making memories is key but keep these points in mind going into your trip. It will help you keep your budget and gift expenses in line and everyone in the family happy. For a cost efficient souvenir, check out PRESSED PENNIES!
Are you a “shopper” or do you just browse as you are walking from place to place? Head over to our Facebook Group, DISNEY EXPRESS LANE, and tell us about your shopping experience. We would love to hear about your favorite store on Disney World property!
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Walt Express Anonymouse
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