Sunday, January 19, 2014

Disney's Aulani on a Family Friendly Budget, How to Save $$$ by Keith Gilabert

Disney's Aulani on a Budget.

This resort is a great place for families and especially the kids.  The lagoon is beautiful and the resort is second to none.  Keep in mind this resort is big on Polynesian Culture and small on Disney.  You will see characters but its not like a Disney Cruise or the Disneyland Resort in FL or CA.

Now if you plan a trip to Aulani be prepared to pay resort prices for everything.  A family of four can expect to pay $200-400 a day just for meals depending on which restaurants you choose.

This is what I did to save money:

1.  Upon arrival to Honolulu rent a car from Alamo - it is also on the Aulani property, makes it easy for return, it will cost about $100 but you will have mobility on the island.

2.  50% of the Aulani Resort is a timeshare.  Which means half the rooms are villas with full kitchens.  Book an Aulani villa, if you search the net you can find owners selling their vacation weeks at the resort at a 10-30% discount, depending on the time of year.

3.  Each villa comes with a full kitchen, dining nook, family room, washer/dryer, master suite and a spa style bathroom.  The kitchen has granite counter tops, stove, oven and microwave.

4.  Your food costs are going to be the easiest to control.  Upon arrival to Aulani, take your rental car and go to Costco or Target, both are about 10 min from the resort.  At Costco they have prepared read to heat meals and the refreshments are sold by the case.  We spent about $300 at Costco for 7 days worth of meals.  We also ate at the Makahiki restaurant and for a very average brunch we spent just over $200.00, so just imagine the cost of dining at the resort for 3 meals a day for 7 days.

5.  Rent the car for 1 day, parking at the resort is $35.00 per day but you will save that by stocking your kitchen.

6.  Aunty's Beach House is great for kids under 12.  They have free and premium experiences.  I did both and my kids had more fun at the free excursions.  Tip :  To sign-up for the free experiences such as "Disruption Eruption and Lilo's Space Goo" you get in line and sign-up at 8 am.  Then you can return with you child and drop them off when it is closer to start time.  These activities fill up fast.

7.  When you depart the resort take Charlie's Taxi, they are clean, reliable and only charge $55.00 to get to the airport.

If you have any questions just leave a comment.

Thanks for visiting,


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