When Do You Tell The Kids You are Headed to Disney World?

By Amanda, Disney’s Cheapskate Princess.com

Every time the Disney commercial comes on TV with unsuspecting kids opening a pizza box announcing a trip to Disney, I tear up. I tear up at any Disney commercial, but that’s beside the point.  How do you Disney Moms tell your kids that a Disney trip is forthcoming?

Tell them the minute you make plans.

In general, I am of this school of thought. The one and only time we surprised our kids with a Disney trip, they were ages 2, 3 and 5. We packed their stuff, picked them up from pre-school, told them we were going on a trip to the Florida beaches, and woke them up when we pulled up to Disney.  Surprise! Every other trip, we told them the day we made the reservations.

This has backfired a couple of times, because plans changed and they got disappointed. But life is full of disappointments and plans change all the time. They got over it and waited for our next trip announcement.  We scheduled a Disney cruise last year, told the kids, showed them our exact room location on the ship, and cancelled the trip when school schedules conflicted. 7 days turned out to be too many days to miss school. They are still sad the cruise didn’t work out, but they understand the reasons why. Life is full of change, and dealing with disappointments is part of dealing with life. They know we’ll go again, and it gave us something to talk about.

Where is one of the coolest Disney places to go these days?

My kids are pre-teens now. They have their own birthday and Christmas money to spend at Disney. Announcing a surprise trip to Disney doesn’t give them any time to save any money. I certainly don’t plan to pay for every t-shirt and key chain they will ask for, so they get lots of notice. If they don’t have enough money on the trip, then I have an excuse for not bailing them out and buying  their souvenirs for them. Poor financial planning on their part does not create a financial emergency for me. Learning to save for what you want is a life skill.

If you want to save money on souvenirs, here’s some ideas.

However, if my kids were small again, I would probably…

Surprise them!

You Tube is covered with videos of kids being told they were headed to Disney. Woohoo! You won’t see that many moments of absolute childhood joy on their little faces, the minute they hear they have driven all night and they are actually in Orlando rather than Grandma’s house in Missouri.

Telling them at the last-minute will ensure you do not have to answer, ”When do we leave?”  five times a day. But you can’t make these cool count-down crafts with the kids either.

So what do you Disney Moms do? Do you tell them at the last possible minute or put the phone down to announce you are on hold with Disney reservations? Leave us some comments on how you handle the news of your next Disney vacation with your kids.

A trip to Disney is a chance to make fabulous family memories. Pack that camera and have a blast.

Thanks for stopping by the Disney Moms. Enjoy those kids while they are young, because they sure grow up fast.

Amanda, Disney’s Cheapskate Princess.com

Come see us at Disney’s Cheapskate Princess on Facebook and Cheapskate Princess on Pinterest.


About Disney's Cheapskate Princess

Disney's Cheapskate Princess writes about Disney merchandise, attractions, and delicious snacks. Visit her at cheapskateprincess.com.
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6 Responses to When Do You Tell The Kids You are Headed to Disney World?

  1. Brande says:

    shhhhh! I’m surprising my daughter and husband this time! They think we are going somewhere else! It’s going to be a long 6 months for me. But, it will be worth it!

  2. Pingback: The $2.29 Disney Snack: So Cheap, It’s Nearly FREE! – Mouze Kateerz

  3. Gretchen says:

    I’m surprising my kids this trip! My oldest is 12, will be almost 13, for the trip. We keep telling him we’re saving to go after my husband gets back, but we’re really going before he deploys! We have an activities advent calendar that we do every year and we are going to have him pull his advent calendar and it will say, pack to visit Mickey or something similar. Then we are going to enjoy a Disney themed dinner at home. I’ve been secretly planning for months and working on Disney projects while he’s been on a summer vacation visiting grandparents! I can’t wait!

  4. kat-tastik says:

    2 years ago my son’s, then 6 & 4 asked to go to Disney World. I told them we would go in 2013, so they and they’re baby brother would be old enough to remember their first trip to Disney World. They know were planning it and the excitement they have looking forward to the trip is wonderful. I think if we still lived in CA and were taking them to their first DisneyLand trip, we would have surprised them, but since they’d asked (they surely didn’t forget my answer) and we live so far away, they know. 🙂

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