I Planned My Disney Wedding on a Budget — What Surprised Me Most

  • I deliberate a small wedding ceremony at Disney World for below $25,000 and ended up saving cash.
  • You may have any park meals served at your wedding ceremony and have visitors go on rides in an empty park.
  • There are over 100 venue areas at Disney, and a few have completely different begin instances.
  • Go to Insider’s homepage for extra tales.

Earlier this 12 months, the pandemic left me ditching the large conventional ceremony of my goals to plan a Disney wedding ceremony I by no means thought I may afford.

Initially, my fiancé and I had deliberate a 400-person wedding ceremony in Oklahoma Metropolis with all our family and friends. However amid the pandemic and altering state tips, we minimize our visitor checklist all the way down to 27 individuals, and I began wanting into one thing that I’d by no means thought was a chance: a wedding ceremony at Walt Disney World.

Planning a Disney wedding ceremony was nothing like I imagined, and I was blown away by the venue, meals, occasion, particulars, and general price.

Hold studying for the largest issues that stunned me about planning my dream Disney wedding ceremony on a finances.

Disney has over 100 areas the place you possibly can have your ceremony and welcome dinner

When I began planning, I (naturally) envisioned Cinderella’s citadel. However most of my visitors aren’t big Disney followers like me, and I did not need my ceremony to utterly really feel prefer it was at a theme park.

The citadel can also be one of the vital costly venues, with a beginning price of $25,000, which might eat up our finances.

However there are over 100 Disney venues to select from, and so they begin at $2,500. Spots reminiscent of Fort Wilderness, Luau Pointe, and the Tree of Life — which has a venue price beginning at $4,500 — had been undoubtedly extra in our finances.

We selected to have our welcome dinner at Tamu Tamu Courtyard in our favourite park, Animal Kingdom. For the ceremony, we needed one thing with pure views and loads of florals, so we checked out a few of Disney’s resort areas.

Sea Breeze Level at Disney’s Boardwalk, which overlooks Crescent Lake, was a high contender, however we needed to get married within the park. Ultimately, we landed on Italy Isola in Epcot, which price $4,500 and included rental charges, chairs, a musician, and a sound system.

We had been additionally fortunate to have a date in the course of the park’s Worldwide Flower and Backyard Competition, which meant we may take pleasure in all the flora within the park at no further expense.

Mystee Disney wedding

The park regarded further lovely as a result of I obtained married throughout a particular competition.

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Most venues should work round park hours, however some permit for particular ceremony time slots

The most important disadvantage of an in-park ceremony is that {couples} should work round park hours, which suggests selecting a tremendous early (about 6 a.m.) or late (round 10 p.m.) time slot.

However the World Showcase in Epcot, the place my venue was positioned, is an exception to the time rule. Because the World Showcase opens at 11 a.m., ceremonies begin at 9 a.m.

Mystee Disney wedding

Every venue has completely different wedding ceremony begin instances.

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You may request meals from any a part of Disney to be served at your wedding ceremony

For many venues, together with ours, menus are 100% customizable. We went with a customary one for our reception after which modified objects primarily based on what we needed.

For instance, we obtained the well-known Mickey-shaped waffles and turned them into an motion station, the place the chef cooks them and provides toppings of visitors’ alternative on the reception. We additionally had action-station crepes and omelets, plus a bar for mashed potato and macaroni.

I additionally needed to share my favourite meals from the parks with my household. Happily, {couples} can request any meals on a Disney property. The culinary group both re-creates it or supplies a chef’s interpretation of it — customizations weren’t dear both; we simply paid primarily based on the prices of the objects we selected.

Among the meals we served included Sanaa’s bread service, Jiko’s cauliflower bisque and lamb shank, Tiffins’ Lion King dessert, Liberty Tree Tavern’s Ooey Gooey Toffee Cake, and churros drizzled with Oreos. The Gray Stuff from Be Our Visitor was our cake filling.

I additionally love that my husband and I can go to the Disney eating places sooner or later to take pleasure in among the meals that was at our wedding ceremony.

disney wedding food

Selecting my Disney wedding ceremony’s menu was a lot enjoyable, and there have been a lot of choices.

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The cooks will even re-create household recipes or cook dinner any non-Disney meals you request

Though Disney meals was a focus for us, the cooks aren’t restricted to park menus.

{Couples} may give the cooks a household recipe to re-create, which we briefly thought-about. I suppose it is a candy solution to convey a piece of house to a vacation spot wedding ceremony or honor somebody who has died.

For an additional price, our visitors obtained to go on a trip in an empty park

Since we had a small visitor checklist, we undoubtedly splurged on further occasions, reminiscent of a “trip mix-in” that allowed our visitors to go on a personal trip after the welcome dinner. It price below $20 a particular person, and I was charged just for individuals who went on the trip.

We selected Flight of Passage, so our visitors had been escorted to the trip with no wait time. Plus, they obtained to expertise Pandora at evening in an empty park.

disney weddding

Our visitors obtained to go on an empty trip and attend a particular dessert occasion.

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We obtained to have a dessert occasion — and you may splurge for a bridesmaid tea occasion or cruise

After our wedding ceremony ceremony, we had a dessert occasion. Sometimes, these occasions are used for watching Disney’s fireworks and consuming desserts. Due to the pandemic, Disney wasn’t doing fireworks, so we adjusted our plan.

We additionally took into consideration the Florida warmth. We shortened our reception to solely brunch, after which later within the night, as soon as the climate cooled down, we held a occasion for dancing, cake, and desserts.

This allowed our visitors to return to their motels and relaxation earlier than the occasion portion of our occasion. In between occasions, my bridal occasion even headed over to Common Studios for a few hours.

We held our dessert occasion at Whitehall Patio on the Grand Floridian, which featured the well-known Monorail flying proper over us.

For a increased price, we may’ve added a farewell brunch, a bridesmaid tea occasion (you possibly can invite Alice and the Mad Hatter), and a dessert cruise to our wedding ceremony.

Disney wedding Mystee

Our areas ended up being the right spice of Disney we had been in search of whereas nonetheless offering our visitors a view of the parks they could have by no means seen earlier than.

Tyler Maness/Hyped Visuals

Though I did not talk with the group of coordinators a lot, they nailed each element

I’m a very sort A kind of planner, so it was actually arduous for me to only belief the Disney wedding ceremony coordinators to do their job.

As soon as I gave them my plans and concepts, I did not hear from the group for a whereas, which was form of terrifying.

I felt like one thing was sure to go incorrect — I’ve heard so many horror tales about wedding ceremony planners. However nothing did, and the few instances that plans needed to be adjusted, my coordinator already had a answer earlier than contacting me, and every thing was resolved in a fast e mail trade.

Total, the planning course of was delightfully hands-off, which let me focus on the enjoyable stuff, reminiscent of my menu, with out stressing over the little particulars.

Mystee Disney wedding

The decor was easy, similar to I needed.

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Disney planners additionally helped me use my finances with out going over

I simply hit Disney’s wedding ceremony minimal of $10,000. Past that, my planner helped me use the remainder of my finances in a sensible approach.

Since Disney was all-in-one planning, I was in a position to take a look at my general finances and minimize non-priority objects, and I saved solely the must-haves all through your entire course of. For instance, the Ooey Gooey Toffee Cake was placing me over finances, so we eliminated one merchandise of decor from the dessert occasion that I did not even discover was gone, and I was again on observe.

The coordinators had been additionally useful when it got here to creating reasonably priced swaps. When I advised my florist I love white roses however needed to be cost-effective, she designed a bouquet with white florals that captured the essence of what I needed and stayed inside my value vary.

Mystee Disney wedding

Planning the marriage went much more easily than I’d anticipated.

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Total, I’m shocked that I saved cash by having a Disney wedding ceremony

Getting married at Disney is not essentially low cost, however it’s rather more cost-effective than I’d imagined. My thoughts was undoubtedly blown by Disney’s pricing fashions.

Above all, our intimate Disney wedding ceremony was less expensive than what we had been going to spend on our bigger, customary wedding ceremony.

At house in Oklahoma Metropolis, venues we checked out began at $5,000 — so I undoubtedly really feel like we got here out on high with our $4,500 venue price at Epcot. Disney’s venue price additionally included a violinist, chairs, an audio system with a sound technician, and a planner — which might’ve been 1000’s of extra {dollars} for a conventional wedding ceremony.

Let me be clear: Getting married in entrance of Cinderella’s citadel with a massive visitor checklist is definitely going to price you, however Disney has a lot of venues that I felt had been cost-effective.

Plus, we obtained the well-known Epcot ball as our backdrop.

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