This is all about Disney World refillable mugs. They are a big way to save money when visiting. Refillable mugs are available at all WDW resorts. The mugs can be filled at any resort, but not at the parks. If you have a “meal plan,” then it is included in your cost. For others,the cost is as follows: $8.99 for 1 day use 11.99 for 2 days 14.99 for 3 day 17.99 for length of stay (up to 14 days).
The “days” are calendar days, not 24 hour periods. They can used for hot coffee, hot tea, hot cocoa, iced tea, and fountain drinks, which usually include lemonade and a sports drink. Juices, alcoholic beverages, and speciality drinks like cappuccino are not included. Just looking at the costs, it seems costly, but it actually can be a cost conscious purchase. Whether or not the mugs are a good deal, depends on the person and family.
The cheapest drink option, of course, is water which available free of charge at the resorts and parks. Florida tap water tastes like the swamp from where it comes, though. It is really nasty. Flavoring packets can added to the swamp water and are another cost effective option. Shops such as the Dollar Tree sell packs of 10 for as little a $1, and these can easily be fitted into luggage, taking minimal space. If you are driving, you can take whatever beverage you like into your room. If you are staying in a moderate or deluxe resort, coffee to make up to 4 cups are placed in your room each day. This occurs twice per week at DVC resorts. Budget resorts do not offer coffee makers, so, coffee is an additional cost. These are some other ways which affect the value.
For our family, it makes sense. We shun even the best tap water. We always fill the mugs for breakfast at the resort. Then we refill them for mornings at the park. We usually come back to our room in the afternoon for a siesta, and refill again. They are refilled again heading out for our evening at the parks. Finally, they are refilled before we retire to the room for the night. We rarely even buy a drink at the parks, other than an occasional LeFou’s Brew.
That amounts to 5 fills per day, 35 for an entire week. The longer you stay, the more of a value they are. After using them for a week, we are paying roughly $.50 per drink.. This is not bad and is close to what you will pay if you bring in canned drinks. It is much cheaper than buying drinks at WDW and/or the resorts.
Another consideration is the mug itself. They are great souvenirs. I use one every day during my commute to work. You are paying basically $6 for the mug, similar to the price of a pin, but something that can actually be useful when you leave the park. Refillable mugs are also available and similarly priced at Disney’s Aulani, Vero Beach, and Hilton Head resorts, but not at any of the California resorts.
Final thoughts: 1. Water is the cheapest option, but Florida water tastes bad. 2. If you have access to a car, there are other options that can save more money. 3. If you buy more than 1 drink per day at a resort, then the refillable mugs offer a good value, and you leave with a useful souvenir.
My favorite cool weather mug recipe: – fill the mug a little over half full with decaf coffee – hot cocoa to about a 1/2 inch from the top – top off with a 1/2 inch of cream – stir well (tasty and a lot cheaper then Starbucks).
To reiterate, the Disney refillable mugs are a great way to save money during a visit to Disney World and a few other Disney Resorts.