Free Things at Disney World: Who doesn’t like free things, right? To be honest, I really am a big ol’ cheapo. And Disney is so expensive to begin with anyway! So, if you are anything like me, having a list of things that you can enjoy for free is a huge plus in your book. Enjoy!
Free Things at Disney World that Don’t Require a Ticket
I am going to break this up into two major sections. The first section will all be things that you can do without a paid ticket (not inside one of the four main parks). Mainly, these are things that you can do or get in resorts or Disney Springs.
- Collecting Transportation Cards – My son LOVES to do this! Ask any Transportation Cast Member (monorail, bus, ferry, etc..) if they have any Transportation Cards. There are so many that you can collect!
- Disney Celebration Buttons – If it is your first visit, you are celebrating a birthday, an anniversary, getting married, a graduation, or any other occasion, you can get a free celebration button at resort guest relation desks.
- Fireworks – Did you know that you don’t have to be in the parks to see the fireworks? There are some great viewing spots from the resorts! Some places include Ticket & Transportation Center (MK fireworks), Yacht & Beach Club or BoardWalk (Epcot fireworks), and the Polynesian Resort (MK fireworks).
- Electrical Water Pageant – This is a cute little light parade on Bay Lake right outside of Magic Kingdom. Show times start at about 9 p.m. at Disney’s Polynesian Resort, 9:15 p.m. at Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort & Spa, 9:30 p.m. at Disney’s Wilderness Lodge, 9:45 p.m. at Disney’s Fort Wilderness Campground, and 10 p.m. at Disney’s Contemporary Resort. It’s really something cool to see and that you shouldn’t miss!
- Art Classes – Disney’s Art of Animation Resort offers free drawing classes that are open to any Walt Disney World resort hotel guest. These classes currently occur at 11 am, 2 pm, and 5 pm (times are subject to change). Not only is this a fun thing to do with the kids, but then you get to take home a fun memory!
- Campfires – Chip ‘n’ Dale’s Campfire Sing-A-Long is a nightly campfire show at Disney’s Fort Wilderness Campground. If you want to also roast marshmallows, you can bring your own or purchase some there. This is a great way to see and interact with characters outside the parks!
- Movies Under the Stars – Most Disney World Resorts offer movies throughout the week. Each resort has a different schedule and shows different movies, so make sure you check out the schedule. The last movie we saw was Star Wars: Force Awakens. They also gave out free popcorn!
- Animal Viewing – At Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge, you can take a stroll and view some incredible animals! Also, this resort is BEAUTIFUL, so while you are there, you might as well walk about and see all of the sights.
- Wake Up Call – If staying at a Disney World resort, you can request a free wake up call from a Disney character!
- Build and Play with Legos – Do you have a Lego fan in your life? Well, then make sure you don’t miss the Lego Store in Disney Springs. This store is literally a Lego lover’s dream.
- Digging for Dino Bones– There is a restaurant in Disney Springs called T-Rex. If you don’t know what it is, it’s basically the Rainforest Cafe of Dinosaurs. Lifesize Dino animatronics are all over the place! But even if you aren’t eating here, there is fun to be had. At the front of a restaurant is an “archeological dig” zone where kids can escape the sun and play!
- Free Chocolate – not every time, but I have walked by the Ghiradelli store in Disney Springs once or twice to find they were passing out free chocolate! Hopefully, you get lucky too!
- Live Entertainment – The Disney Parks are full of live entertainment, and Disney Spring does not disappoint. It seems to be around every corner. Musicians, dance troupes, and school choirs are just some of the live entertainment options at Disney Springs.
- Pool Side Games and Trivia – most of the resorts offer free games and activities at their main pool throughout the day. Sometimes, there might even be a prize if you win!
- Balloons! – at the front desk of your resort, ask a Cast Member for a free balloon! They don’t do this at the Animal Kingdom Lodge, though, in order to keep the animals safe.
If you are staying at a Disney World Resort, go exploring! Lots of the resorts have free activities — it just depends on what day and what resort.
Free things at Disney World that Require a Ticket/Some Sort of Initial Purchase
This section will now require you to have purchased a park ticket and be in the parks or to have purchased a meal. So I guess these things ‘technically’ aren’t free, because you are paying tons of $$$ to be there, but these are fun extras.
- Stickers – (You can get these at the resorts/Disney Springs, but I have mainly seen them in the parks.) Lots of Cast Members have a roll of these and they are just waiting to give them out! Don’t be shy. Ask a Cast Member if they have any and see how many you can collect. (Pro tip: these stickers work much better than band-aids for blisters on your heel. I know this from experience )
- Cupcake – Sometimes, you can get a free cupcake on your birthday at a table service restaurant! Let the Cast Members know that it’s your birthday, and there is a good chance that you will be getting some sort of dessert for free.
- Club Cool – Calling all soda officianatos! This is the place where you want to be! In Epcot, there is a shop called Club Cool where you can try sodas from all around the world! Some are yummy! Others… not so much. *UPDATE*- Unfortunately, Club Cool is now closed. But I am crossing my fingers and hoping that Disney will bring it back once Epcot is done with its refurbishments!
- Pixie Dust – At the Magic Kingdom, you can get Pixie Dusted (glitter sprinkled on your head) for free at Castle Couture in Fantasyland or Bibbidi Bobbidi Boutique in the castle.
- Sorcerers of the Magic Kingdom – This game has really awesome cards that you get for free at the Main Street Firehouse in Magic Kingdom. With these cards, you can fight various villains across all of Magic Kingdom! To read more about it, click here!
- A Pirates Adventure – This a scavenger hunt type game available to play for free in Adventureland. You will receive a treasure map and cards. This activity is super fun and interactive!
- Bookmarks – Not only will you be able to meet Princess Bell and participate in the story at the Enchanted Tales With Belle, but you will receive a bookmark at the end of the performance too!
- Food Samples – Want to sample some fudge? Then, stop into the Confectionary on Main Street in Magic Kingdom. There is usually a tray of fudge samples sitting on top of the main display case.
- Become a Wilderness Explorer – This is a free game at the Animal Kingdom where you earn badges (stickers) for doing certain activities ranging from animal observation to exercising nature skills. Explore Disney’s Animal Kingdom through this challenge, and have the chance to earn over 30 badges!
- Concerts – The America Gardens Theatre at Epcot is a great place to enjoy some great music, especially during the Food and Wine Festival. In the past, they have had bands like Boyz 2 Men, Hanson, Sugar Ray, Mercy Me, Baha Men, Plain White T’s, and so many more!
- Agent P’s World Showcase Adventure – Stop Dr. Doofenshmirtz and foil his dastardly plans! There is a booth right before the World Showcase begins where Cast Members will brief you on your mission. Once that happens, Major Monogram and his intern, Carl, will send their Agents (aka, your child) a series of clues via text message. The clues will lead you through one of the following destinations: China, France, Germany, Japan, Mexico, or the UK. Each pavilion hosts a different adventure that lasts about 35 minutes. After successfully maneuvering through the mission, agents will experience a very special “thank you” for helping to save the world!
- Toppings Bar – Okay, this is my favorite sort of ‘free things at Disney World.’ At Pecos Bill Tall Tale Inn in Magic Kingdom, there is a free toppings bars (with purchase of your meal)! But seriously, the topping bar is no joke.
- Epcot Kidcot – Did you know that while you are touring the sights (and cuisine) of the World Showcase, that your little one can do art projects around the world? See the Cast Member at any Kidcot Fun Stop to help you and your kids get started. Click here to read more!
- Slushy- If it is your birthday, you can get a free slushy from Club Cool in Epcot! *UPDATE*- Unfortunately, Club Cool is now closed. But I am crossing my fingers and hoping that Disney will bring it back once Epcot is done with its refurbishments!