Shopping is a favorite pastime for many Disney guests. As with anything else in Disney, with a little magic, pixie dust, and knowledge, you can easily solve problems associated with Disney Shopping. Here are the best tips to save you time and money while getting the souvenirs you want!
1. Use Delivery Services
Everyone dreads lugging bags full of souvenirs around the parks all day worrying about your treasures getting broken or damaged. As expected of Disney, the problem of carrying bags around all day can be solved with a little Disney Magic.
Single-day visitors can take advantage of Souvenir Pick-Up, which transfers your packages to a location near the front of the park. You can then pick up your items anytime during operating hours.
Resort guests can have packages delivered from the point of purchase right to your hotel. Simply let the clerk know you would like the items delivered, and they will give you a short form to fill out. You’ll get a copy of the form, and you can take that form to the Gift Shop at your resort where you can pick up your items.
If you really go overboard with shopping, you can have the items delivered to your home for a small fee. Fortunately, shipping is based on the value of the item and not the weight.
2. Use Disney Gift Cards
Disney gift cards are accepted at any Disney location. There are a few reasons why using gift cards is a good idea.
First, a Disney gift card is not connected to your credit or debit card. Therefore, if you lose the card, no one can access your personal information. You should treat the gift cards like cash, though, because if you do lose it, you’re out the amount on the card.
Second, Disney gift cards can be purchased at many local retailers. If these retailers offer incentives like gas perks, you could save a ton of money on gas just by buying enough gift cards to cover your vacation reservation and expenses.
Finally, you won’t have to reconcile your receipts with your checking account when you get home!
Be aware, though, that most non-Disney locations like restaurants do not accept Disney gift cards.
3. Buy in Person
It is often better to buy items in person than online. The prices at the Disney parks are usually the same as what you will find in the Disney Store, but the parks have a much larger selection.
This is especially true with exclusive official park merchandise like Disney Dooney & Burke, Alex and Ani, and Disney Pandora Collection.
4. Don’t Forget about the Airport Stores
Disney vacations often end far too soon especially if you are using the Magical Express service back to the airport which often insists on picking you up several hours before your flight.
If you aren’t quite done shopping, you decided you absolutely needed that Minnie mug you didn’t buy at Magic Kingdom, or you just need to kill some time, you can purchase many Disney items at Orlando MCO Airport. The two stores include The Magic of Disney and Disney’s EarPort. These stores also accept Disney gift cards!
5. Take Advantage of the World of Disney Store
World of Disney is a 50,000 square foot, 12 room one-stop-shop for everything Disney. It is the largest store in the world selling Disney merchandise. Why is this important? Because you can find just about every Disney souvenir in one place. From Men’s to Infant’s clothing, Disney’s Pandora Collection, and Disney Housewares items, World of Disney in Disney Springs has something for everyone in your family.
6. Buy Specialty Items at Specialty Stores
Even if you use World of Disney for Disney souvenirs, you won’t be able to find some specialty items like hotel-specific merchandise anywhere but at the specific location. For example, you’ll never see an Animal Kingdom Resort magnet at Pop Century Resort Hotel.
Here’s a good rule to live by in The World: If you find a location-specific item that you absolutely have to have, buy it then, and don’t assume you will find it somewhere else.
7. Use the Disney Merchandise Department
It never fails; you get home from your vacation, and you wish you had gotten the Minnie Mouse wallet for your niece’s birthday or that Donald Duck hat for your dad. The Disney Merchandise Department can come to the rescue! Just call them at 1-877-560-6477 or e-mail them at email@example.com, and provide them with as much information as possible about the item you want.
Here’s a tip: if you are unsure about an item while you are on property, take a picture of the item and the barcode. This will make it easier to get the exact item you want.
8. Get International Goods at World Showcase
World Showcase is like no other place on earth. Maybe I should say it’s like no other single place on earth. Visitors will find items from all over the world in a relatively small area. You can buy French perfume, Italian masks, and Mexican dia de los muertos skulls in just over a mile radius. These items are specific to the country in which they appear and will not be found anywhere else in the park.