Nothing pains me more than having to pay any amount of money for water, let alone over $2.75. I’m sure you can relate to the feeling as you frustratingly pull out your wallet to pay for something that should practically be free. Disney knows they have you – it’s hot and humid central Florida which means you’ll need plenty of water during the day.
Luckily we have a few options when it comes to water to keep the costs down or even to $0.
You may say – what’s the big deal paying $2.75 for a bottle of water when you need it?
If you do the math all those bottles of water can add up very quickly. Let’s say you have a family of 4 and are touring the parks for four days. At a minimum you’re having two meals in the parks per day – lunch and dinner. That’s 8 total meals x 4 people = 32 bottles of water total. 32 * $2.75 a bottle = $88 minimum simply in water!
That extra $88 can get you an extra night in a hotel, maybe a character meal for your family just some extra money to put back into savings. Yes $2.75 isn’t that much but if you do the math those small costs like water can really add up quickly to hundreds of dollars.
Let’s take a look at ways to reduce the costs of water in the parks!
Bring water bottles with you to the parks
Disney has water fountains all around the parks which are free of cost to fill up. Water fountains in the parks aren’t generally known for their good taste or cold water that comes out but sometimes it’s all you have to work with. I always get a chlorine or salt taste from many of the water fountains around the park not to mention that most of the water comes out lukewarm at best.
My biggest issue with this tip is having to carry around the water bottles with you, especially when you’re not using them. I never enjoy having to lug big clunky water bottles around so I found a nice solution to that problem – collapsible water bottles!
These water bottles fold down completely flat when not full of water and even fold up so they can easily be packed away when they’re not being used. If you have a family it’s much easier to carry 4-5 of these with you compared to carrying around full sized water bottles that don’t flatten out.
I like to bring a small bag or backpack to carry a few items, two of which are empty bottles of water and some snacks for the day. You can fill up the bottles of water at any of the water fountains throughout the parks – sure beats paying $2.75+ for a bottle.
Ask for free water!
Anytime that I go to a quick service restaurant for a snack or meal I request a water from the tap, not a bottle of water. Be sure to specifically ask for the free “tap” because a few times I’ve been rung up for a bottle of water when I meant the free cups. If you simply ask for water they will give you a bottle of water, you need to specifically ask for tap water which will cost you nothing.
I’ve seen cast members start to even pre-full large cups of ice tap water alongside the cups of soda so they are expecting many guests to ask for the free water option. I’ve always even gotten ice in the water (and they serve it in the large cups too) so it’s a great way to save a few dollars per person per meal.
Even if I’m not purchasing something from the restaurant I’ve been successful in asking for a tree cup of tap water without any question from the cast members so all you need to do is ask! I’ve even asked a few counter service restaurants to fill up a few water bottles which they did but it’s probably frowned upon to do that.
Bring your own water in the parks
Disney allows you to bring in food and snacks which includes bottles of water. You technically could bring in gallons of water but realistically you’ll just want to carry a few bottles with you. When I bring in bottles of water I usually will freeze a few bottles of water the night before to have cold ice water for at least part of the day.
When you drink the water and still have the frozen center you can refill them at the water fountains throughout the park to give a nice cool bottle of water on those hot Florida days. You also don’t have to limit what drinks you bring in to just water – if you want to bring in juice or soda too that is allowed though I would avoid bringing things in glass bottles.
I know what you’re all thinking (or at least what I am) – no, unfortunately no beer or alcoholic drinks are allowed to be brought into the parks. You of course still bring your own alcohol to your resort so just make a trip back to the room for that cold one.
I recommend bringing a soft-sided insulated cooler with you into the parks. The soft sided coolers are cheaper, lighter and can easily fold down at the end of the day to make them easier to carry and store. Just make note that coolers can be no larger than 24” x 15” x 18” in size or they won’t let you through the front gates.
There are many very easy methods that you can use to avoid having to buy the expensive bottles of water when you’re vacationing at Disney World. Between bringing in your own water to just asking for it from counter service restaurants – you should be able to save yourself a good amount of money. If you do find yourself having to purchase a bottle in the parks – just save it for the rest of your day and refill it at the water fountains.
Have any money saving tips for water at the parks? Share them in the comments below!