There’s been plenty of talk lately about the rising costs of a Walt Disney World Not-So-Scary Halloween Party ticket. If you attend during peak times of the Halloween season, you’re guaranteed to pay well over $100 per family member. But, what if there was a way to celebrate Halloween on the cheap at Disney? From fun in the WDW resorts to special Halloween treats, here are five free ways to enjoy Halloween at Walt Disney World – and a bonus inexpensive way, too.
1. Free WDW Resort Fun
Let’s talk about free at Walt Disney World Resorts for a minute. Even on a normal day, each offers hourly activities by the main pool area. On and around Halloween, the resorts like to add a bit of not-so-scary fun into the mix. We’ve stayed at All-Star Music Resort on Halloween night and elusive Disney characters, like Donaldo, have made an appearance for free autographs and photos. Halloween-themed movies are also played during “Movies Under the Stars” near the main pool. We also enjoy the Halloween costume contest and mini trick-or-treating around the main pool area.
But in the past several years, we’ve chosen to purchase MNSSHP tickets for either the night before or after actual Halloween. This way, we can celebrate both at Magic Kingdom and at our on-property resort.
Tip: When you check in, make sure to grab an Activities Guide or ask a Castmember for one. That way you can plan what you’d like to attend at your resort in advance.
Love finding free stuff when you visit the parks? Here’s a list of our favorite SECRET free things at Walt Disney World!
2. Disney Springs at Halloween
While you can pay for Halloween-inspired makeovers at its Sephora location, you can take advantage of all of the Halloween fun at Disney Springs for free:
- Halloween Entertainment: Past performances have included a Strolling Piano and Zombie Drum Corp.
- Photo Ops: Disney Springs is one of my favorite places for Halloween photos. Be on the lookout for special photo backdrops that include Mickey Jack-o-Lanterns.
3. Fort Wilderness Trick or Treating
Again, another great place to resort hop any time of year, but on Halloween it’s even more fun! Campers really get into the Halloween spirit by decking out their campsites as well as themselves. Yep, there’s free trick-or-treating on Halloween night at Disney’s Fort Wilderness. Tip: If you’re adamant about scoring candy, make sure to make plenty of time as many sites are all out early in the evening.
There’s plenty of additional fun at Fort Wilderness including a golf cart parade and hourly activities. If you won’t be staying at Fort Wilderness during your stay, there are a few ways to get there. If you brought a vehicle, you can drive over and park in the main parking lot. You can also take advantage of WDW transportation by taking a bus from any of the theme parks or Disney Springs or, the best way, the Fort Wildnerness Ferry. It goes back and forth from Magic Kingdom to the resort’s marina.
If you’re concerned about traffic during the trick-or-treating, don’t be. There’s no driving in the loop where the kiddos will visit. You will see a few golf carts, though. Ok, more than a few. But, many are decorated as well.
4. Theme Park Halloween Decorations
If you want the most Halloween bang for your buck, Magic Kingdom is the park to visit for the Halloween season. And, if you want the funnest backdrops, you’ll find those along Main Street U.S.A. and in Town Square. Look for the themed scarecrows in Town Square and pretty decorations at Cinderella Castle.
If you want a family photo but don’t want to spend the dough on a Memory Maker package, politely ask a PhotoPass photographer to snap a pic with your phone or camera.
5. Decorate Your Resort Room
Did you know you can decorate your resort room, windows, and doors when you visit? Unless you’ve visited a WDW resort before, you may not know about this hidden gem. As long as you don’t damage WDW property, you’re free to add decorations to your resort room, its windows, and even the door. We like to make our own Halloween decorations for Disney Resorts ahead of time. Think easy to travel, easy to dispose of items including window clings and paper crafts.
Honestly, we keep all of the craft supplies on hand always, so it doesn’t cost us anything to make them. Use construction paper, ribbon, markers, and stickers to create a beautiful Halloween display. Hanging them on your resort room door can get a little tricky, but you can use tape or even Command Strips.
Bonus: Special Halloween Treats in the Parks
While the only not-free item on this list, if you want to try a bit of tasty Halloween Disney flair, there are plenty in the counter service restaurants and bakeries. If you’re at Disney Springs, you’ll find specially-themed holiday treat there as well. Popular items include Character candy apples, cupcakes, and chocolate designs.
What’s your favorite way to celebrate Halloween at Walt Disney World? Do you always attend a Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party when you visit? Please let me know in the comments section below!