Walt Disney world

Disney World: Ultimate Guide to Saving with Points

To the point Here are our strategies for saving on a trip to Disney World with credit card rewards points!

We’ve detailed how much a trip to Walt Disney World costs. For a family of four, that’s about $12,000 for a week.

Here are some strategies for accumulating points, so you can use them to pay less for a trip to Disney World.

Disney World: review of existing strategies to save money

Walt Disney world
walt Disney world

Accommodations near Disney World

Here are the loyalty program points that can pay for accommodation at Walt Disney World.

Marriott Bonvoy

The Marriott Bonvoy loyalty program is one of the best ways to earn points for hotels. In fact, it’s the only hotel chain in Canada that has a Marriott Bonvoy credit card, so you can earn lots of points for free accommodation.

What’s more, when you stay 5 consecutive nights using points, the 5th night is free! In addition, free night certificates can be added to the reservation to get a full week of accommodations at Disney World.

Hébergement Disney World – Marriott Bonvoy

The best way to earn Marriott Bonvoy points for free stays at more than 7,000 hotels worldwide is with the Marriott Bonvoy® American Express®* Card (and/or the Marriott Bonvoy Business American Express® Card).

In addition to the great welcome bonus on both cards, you’ll earn 2 points per dollar on all purchases and 5 points per dollar at Marriott locations.

And each year, you’ll earn a certificate for one free hotel night (35,000 point value) as well as 15 Elite nights toward your Marriott Bonvoy status.

Alternatively, you can earn Marriott Bonvoy points withAmerican Express Membership Rewards creditcard . You can transfer Membership Rewards points to Marriott Bonvoy points at a rate of 5:6 (50,000 Membership Rewards points = 60,000 Marriott Bonvoy points).

For example, with the American Express Cobalt® Card, you earn 6 Marriott Bonvoy points for every dollar you spend at grocery stores, restaurants, bars, convenience stores and home delivery. It is one of the best credit card in Canada for travelers. Find out why here.

Check out this page for all the welcome offers on cards that earn Marriott Bonvoy points.

Hilton Honors,

Like Marriott Bonvoy, you could also earn Hilton Honors points withAmerican Express Membership Rewards creditcard . On this side, you can transfer Membership Rewards points to Hilton Honors points at a 1:1 rate (1,000 Membership Rewards points = 1,000 Hilton Honors points).

Again, with the American Express Cobalt® Card you can earn 5 Hilton Honors points per dollar of purchase in the 5X points categories. This is a great way to earn Hilton Honors points in Canada.

Finally, keep an eye out for transfer bonuses to receive 30% to 50% bonus points! These bonuses can be seen on both the Marriott Bonvoy and Hilton Honors sides.

Hébergement Disney World – Hilton Honors

Independent hotels and Airbnb

Next, rewards points that can be used on any travel expense are best used for Airbnb or independent hotels on platforms such as Expedia or Booking.com.

For example, each person in a couple could take out a TD First Class Travel® Visa Infinite* Card and earn up to $1,150 in rewards points applicable on Disney Worldhotel reservations!

Hébergement Disney World – Booking.com

Hotels on the Disney World site

By choosing to stay in a hotel on the Disney World site, the experience of the magic of Disney will be everywhere and all the time! Indeed, you will be in a complete immersion of the magic of Disney from the moment you wake up to the moment you go to bed.

There are several advantages of the accommodations on the site:

  • Access to the parks before the official opening time
  • Late access after Magic Kingdom and Epcot close
  • Free transportation on the Disney Worldsite
  • Easy and quick access to your room to rest during the day
  • Possibility of making restaurant reservations for the entire stay versus one day at a time
  • Selections for Lightning Lane can be made as early as 7 a.m.

Just like independent hotels, you will have to turn to travel points that can be applied to travel expenses to pay for your stay at a hotel on the Disney World site.

Airline tickets

Another important expense in the travel budget for Disney World is airfare.

When flying to Orlando, there are several ways to use credit card rewards points.


Aeroplan and Air Canada

By purchasing Aeroplan points credit card or Aeroplan transferable points, you can save a lot of money when traveling to Disney World with your family.

A family of four will need approximately 72,000 Aeroplan points for a round-trip economy flight.

Billets d’avion vers Disney World – points Aeroplan

The point rate fluctuates depending on the traffic. Therefore, more points will be needed for the summer, vacation and spring break periods.

How hard is it to collect so many Aeroplan points? No! See here for strategies where you can earn over 100,000 Aeroplan points easily and quickly.

The simple strategy to get to Disney World

Not interested in taking out multiple credit cards? A solution for air tickets to Disney World is possible with a credit card .

Many Aeroplan credit cards offer many points as a welcome bonus.

Here’s a strategy for booking airfare to Disney World with just one credit card per adult, the TDMD AeroplanMD Visa Infinite Card.

Adult Card Bonus Minimum expenses Annual fee
Adult 1 Td Visa Infinite Aeroplan New up to 50,000 Aeroplan points $10,000 $139
Adult 2 Td Visa Infinite Aeroplan New up to 50,000 Aeroplan points $10,000 $139
TOTAL 100,000 Aeroplan points $20,000 278 $

The final portion of the welcome bonus is an anniversary bonus, so you’ll need to renew the card to get all the points in the offer (if you need them).

Disney California Family

Free luggage

Another advantage of the Aeroplan creditcard is that the cardholder can check in one free piece of luggage as well as for the accompanying persons (up to 8 persons). This is very convenient for a family traveling to Disney World with several suitcases!

To take advantage of this benefit, simply link the credit card to the Aeroplan account. Reservations can be made in any way (cash, points, travel points, etc.).

travel points to get to Disney World

There are many ways to pay for airfare to Disney World with credit card travel points.

Here’s an example with National Bank rewards points.

NBC Rewards

With the National Bank’s À la carte Rewards program, travel points can be used in two ways.

You can book a flight with your travel points through Voyage À la Carte: 10,000 points per $100 and top up with cash if you don’t have enough points. This is the best way to use National Bank Rewards points. Plus, your purchase will also earn you extra points!

However, if you have found a cheaper ticket to Disney World on another platform, it is also possible to use your points as a credit to the account.

Save on Disney World spending with AIR MILES

So, since the Silver AIR MILES strategy for Disney World gift cards is defunct, we must turn to :

  • AIR MILES Dream Miles
  • points can be applied to any purchase
  • points that can be applied to travel expenses
  • cash back

Don’t forget that Dream and Cash miles will soon be combined. This will simplify your strategy, as you can move your miles as you see fit.


AIR MILES Dream Miles for Disney World

AIR MILES Dream miles can be redeemed at AIR MILES travel agency partner, Red Tag.

To do this, log in to your AIR MILES account and go to this page.

red tag disney home page en

Most types of tickets are available:

Here are examples of rates for 2 adults and 2 children:

red tag disney list en
red tag disney days hopper en

In 2 years of planning, you can earn over 20,000 AIR MILES bonus miles through AIR MILES creditcard application bonuses and by participating in AIR MILES promotional events.

travel points for spending at Disney World

There are several ways to use credit card travel points to offset the cost of spending at Disney World.

Here are two examples with TD Rewards points and other travel points in general.

Expedia for TD

TD Rewards points can be used to purchase admission to Disney World parks on the Expedia for TD platform.

Right now, the TD First Class Travel® Visa Infinite* Card has a great sign-up bonus! This is the equivalent of a big discount on tickets to Disney World!

For those who wish to visit Universal Studios, tickets can also be purchased with TD Rewards points.

Points Prime TD pour les entrées à Disney World

Reward points

The website Undercover Tourist sells tickets for Disney World.

There are also discounts offered from time to time. The advantage of going through this process compared to the official Disney World website is that the payment will be categorized as “travel” on most credit cards.

Plateforme Undercover Tourist Disney World

To use Avion Rewards points, for example, at an optimal rate of 100 points for $1 in account credit, the purchase must be registered as “travel”. By purchasing the tickets directly from Disney World, the expense will be classified as “entertainment”.

This is valid for several programs offering account credits in exchange for travel points:

  • NBC Rewards
  • Scene+
  • HSBC Rewards (soon to be discontinued with the transition to RBC)
  • etc.

For example, HSBC recognizes Undercover Tourist as a travel expense that earns 6 points per dollar, as shown on this statement:

hsbc undercover tourist en
hsbc undercover tourist en

The savings account strategy for Disney World

Credit card points allow us tosave on everyday life.

Cash back

As far as cash back goes, it’s easy toearn $150, $200, $250 here and there with the welcome bonuses on many card .

Plus, when you go for 2-5% cash back on everyday purchases like groceries, it adds up quickly.

All of these amounts obtained from purchases and credit card application should be deposited into the Disney World savings account.

Privilege points

The American Express Cobalt® Card is one of the best credit card in Canada for earn lots of points quickly. Indeed, the main attraction of this card is that it offers 5X points on everything categorized as restaurants, food deliveries and groceries. These privilege points are cash back equivalent to 5% at the grocery store.

It’s not mentioned, but grocery stores are indeed businesses that give 5X the points. Think of the giftcard display in grocery stores!

When used as cash back, Membership Rewards points appear as an account credit on the credit card relevé . The credit is applied in the same manner as a payment from you to the account balance.

Rewards points can be used to cover expenses at Disney World or to replenish the Disney savings account when used daily!

Échange de points-privilèges sur l’épicerie

Finally, just like conventional cash back, simplyearn these savings in a savings account for Disney World if you use them on everyday purchases.

Did you just save $101.97 on weekly groceries with points? And hop! 101.97 to be deposited into the Disney Savings Account.

Is there a benefit to using these points on everyday purchases? Or is it better to hoard them for use at once at Disney World? The result will be the same: you will have saved money, but it depends on your perception and preference.

Bonus points for the trip to Disney World

The Disney World savings account strategy has two major advantages:

Throughout the savings marathon before the trip to Disney World, money can grow depending on your risk tolerance. Tangerine often has promotional bank account offers where you can earn between 2 and 5% interest in your savings account!

These rates are not permanent, but in my experience it is not fair to new customers. From what I have observed, they come back at least once a year.

Did you know that you can support the Milesopedia website by using our links? Whether it’s credit cards or bank accounts, you’ll get the same or even an exclusive offer!

Second, while Disney gift cards have the advantage of not charging a conversion fee, it is not possible to earn points. When used, Disney gift cards are comparable to paying with U.S. cash.

However, when using a credit card with no conversion fee, you can earn rewards points to further reduce the cost of your trip to Disney World. In fact, in most cases, points can be redeemed up to 60 days after purchase.

So, we can use the savings, obtained for free or almost free, from the Disney World savings account to pay off our balance AND collect points after the trip.

You want the maximum return? Here it comes!

Disney's gift card strategy

Are you desperate to pick up some Disney gift cards? There’s nothing stopping you from using the funds in the Disney World Savings Account to purchase Disney gift cards and stock your drawer the same way you did before!

Also, buying Disney gift cards helps avoid any temptation to use money from the Disney World savings account for another reason.

This is a great way to collect groceries when you want to make sure that the money is used for Disney World only.

A word of caution; be sure to transfer your physical gift card balance to a Disney Virtual Gift card . This way, we avoid misplacing them and we leave the physical cards in the drawer for the children’s magic side!

Also, don’t forget to use the right credit card at the right place to get your Disney gift cards! The American Express CobaltMD Card, for example, will give you 5X points for Disney gift card purchases at Métro or Super C.

By doing so, you also save on conversion fees and earn points on gift card purchases!

Cartes cadeaux Disney
Cartes cadeaux Disney

Save on other expenses at Disney World

After the big expenses of a trip to Disney World, why stop there? We can push even further to save money!

Parking fees, airplane seat selection and luggage

If you’re going to Disney World for a week, you may need parking at the airport.

Some hotels near the terminal offer 7 to 14 days of parking with an overnight stay.

We have a complete guide to parking at the airport: all the information is here.

Secondly, many credit cards offer credits for incidental expenses related to a trip to Disney World. For example, the National Bank World Elite Mastercard® offers $150 per year in travel credit to pay for:

  • Airport parking
  • Baggage fees
  • Seat selection
  • Access to airport lounges
  • Flight upgrades

So, if you don’t qualify for free baggage with an Aeroplan credit card, the National Bank World Elite Mastercard® will come in very handy to cover the costs associated with your luggage!

On the TD First Class Travel® Visa Infinite* Card side , there’s also a $100 annual credit that can be used when booking via Expedia for TD.

Foreign Currency Conversion Fees

This component is not important when using Disney gift cards, but it is something to consider when optimizing the Disney savings account strategy.

The Scotiabank PassportMD Visa Infinite* Card is the ultimate credit card for saving on conversion fees. This represents a 2.5% value on your Disney World purchases. This card is great for getting to Disney World with the points, but it’s also very useful during the trip!

The Scotiabank PassportMD Visa Infinite* Card earns Scene+ points. With these Scene+ points, you can simply use the points to pay for hotel, car rental or airplane expenses.

Car rental fees

Car rental can be paid for with AIR MILES Dreams miles.

In this example, a vehicle can be rented for a one-week stay at Disney World for 2,960 Dream Miles or $863.38 when paid in cash. In this situation, the valuation of a Dream Mile is 23¢, which is excellent!

Location de voiture Disney Airmiles
Location de voiture Disney Airmiles
Location de voiture – argent

For a family, one person could apply for the BMO® AIR MILES® World Elite®* Mastercard®* and easily earn 3,000 AIR MILES bonus miles – thanks to the exclusive Milesopedia offer – after making $3,000 in purchases.

This represents a savings of $863.38 from $3,000 in expenses or a 28.79%return!

New credit card strategies for going to Disney World

You’ll have to be patient to go to Disney World for free (or almost).

Step One: The Disney Savings Account

It is suggested that you start by building up your Disney savings account since you need time to collect enough cash back and travel points.

The total amount to aim for will depend on each family: determine your goal and your needs for Disney World.


A trip to Disney World can be very expensive. A family of four can easily spend $3,000 for 7 days in the parks.

Then, to eat on site, the budget for food is often around $250 to $300 per day for two adults and two children. That being said, this is only an estimate, as the bill will depend on several factors.

  • the quantity
  • quality
  • the place
Meal Plate
Meal Plate

Indeed, there are a multitude of dining experiences at Disney World: fast food, table service, character restaurants, etc. With so many varieties, it’s easy to eat for less or for much more.

One way to save money on meals is to bring your own food. Disney allows coolers (24″ x 18″ x 15″ or smaller) to be brought to their site.

Finally, don’t forget the costs for extras, options (Genie Plus, Lightning Lane, Magic Band, etc.), magical experiences and souvenirs on site, etc.

Step 2: Go to Disney World

Next, you need to strategize on how to get there. As illustrated in the first part of this article, there are several ways to pay for plane tickets, such as with Aeroplan points and travel points.

Aeroplan points have no expiration date. However, points can be lost if the account is inactive after 18 months. With an Aeroplan creditcard , there is no need to worry about keeping the account active.

Interested in making the road trip to Florida? You’ll need to top up the Disney savings account a bit more to cover these extra expenses with cash back and rewards points.

Third step: Accommodation

On the hotel points side, they can be picked up easily and quickly with a few credit cards, especially if it’s the Marriott Bonvoy program that is being targeted.

The Marriott Bonvoy Free Night Certificate is paid approximately 8 weeks after the card is renewed. Therefore, it is recommended that you apply for the Carte Marriott BonvoyMC American ExpressMD and the Carte Marriott BonvoyMC Entreprise American ExpressMD Card at least 1 year and 2 months prior to travel to Disney World.

Finally, if one turns to independent hotels or AirBnBs, one will have to replenish the Disney savings account a little more with cash back or travel points.

Bottom Line

Start by determining your goals for Disney World (plane or car, hotels or Airbnb, how many days in the parks, etc.). Then, we establish a credit card strategy!

When you arm yourself with the best credit cards based on your spending habits, it’s easy toearn points and build up your savings account for a trip to Disney World!

Credit cards and travel points allow us to travel for free (or almost)!

Come to discuss that topic in our Facebook Group!
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I'm Aline, an experienced traveller, a foodie at heart, an Avgeek, a photography enthusiast and an expert on credit card programs. I use Reward Points to travel on a budget and to save money on everyday life; writing about these topics allows me to share my passion and help you. ~ 7 continents and 75 countries ~

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