Planning a family vacation to Disney with travel hacking

disney travel hacking

While I write about earning more, automating your finances and tracking your expenses, thats just a small part of my life. Its so important but still a small part. Whats most important in my life is my family and creating memories with them. I’m planning on taking a vacation with my family to Disney world and plan to use travel hacking to get there.

This means I’m going to Disney. Oh sweet, glorious, EXPENSIVE, Disney.

The trip is about 14 months from now and my goal is to limit the costs by using travel hacking. I don’t want to go overboard and spend a significant amount of time but I hope that I can use the 80/20 method to figure out what the best use of my time is.

My goal is to learn as much as I can and keep you involved throughout my journey. As I’ve already mentioned we are a year out so this will consist of periodic updates. I’m hoping I can wow you around Halloween of next year with a great report that reads…

I went to Disney for FREE! However, I doubt thats going to happen. I don’t want to sacrifice on the quality of my trip to save a few bucks. This will be one of just a few trips to Disney for my family and I so I want to make the most of it.

When you google travel hacking you come up with a ton of resources like this one, this one or this one. I’m sure there will be a ton to read and digest but I’m hoping to put a plan together in the next several weeks.

As an engineer I think of things in systems, processes and timelines so here are some thoughts from an engineer’s mind.

The inputs

  • My family of four wants to go to Disney for 5-7 days.
  • While I want to utilize travel hacking I dont want to sacrifice the quality of my trip.
  • The costs will consist of:
    • Airfare for 4 individuals
    • Admission to the park(s)
    • Hotel stay for 5ish nights
    • Food
    • Misc items like parkings, etc.

The timeline

As far as a timeline goes I am tackling this quite a bit ahead of the game so I can apply for several credit cards and not get nailed for applying for too many cards in too short of a time span.

For the next 4 weeks or so I want to read and learn enough so I can understand the dos and don’t of travel hacking. I think by 11/1 I want to have a detailed plan of when I will apply for cards and how I will keep track of the moving pieces.

From there I will likely apply for a card every 1.5 months or so between my wife and I.

One thing I won’t do is manufacture spending to hit card limits. Based on how heavily my household utilized credit cards (and pays them off each month) I dont think it will be an issue to hit the spending limits.

Potential research findings

I’m sure my research will take me far and wide. However, I do plan to focus my research enough that I’m not looking for a needle in a haystack. We’ll see how it goes but I hope I can learn the following:

  1. What part(s) of travel hacking are the best bang for my buck?
  2. How will all of this affect my credit score?
  3. What are the best ways to apply the pareto principle to put forth 20% of the effort and get 80% of the results?
  4. How do I implement a system for all of this?
  5. How do I track all of this to not get burned?

Right now my plan is to update you next when I’ve put together a plan and will share it with you as well as the helpful resources i’ve uncovered along the way.

Do any of you have any helpful hints or experiences to share? If so, reach out so I can include you in future posts.

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