Ever heard nothing is free with the Mouse? I have heard it many times before and I find that it’s just not true. There are many fantastic things that the Walt Disney World theme parks offer at no additional cost. I find there are some great hidden gems at each of the parks that you can do or get for free (most with theme park admission that is)! In order to help you, I am going to share my secrets of the best free finds at Walt Disney World.
Free Soda at Club Cool
Free Coke! Club Cool is located at the front of Epcot (right across from Connections Cafe) and allows you to taste Coke products that are popular all over the world. There are eight flavors in total, they remain pretty constant but from time to time they have swapped out the flavors in favor of new ones.
For More Read: Club Cool Flavors: Sip Soda From Around the World for Free
Free Disney Celebration Buttons
Disney loves to acknowledge when you and your family are choosing to celebrate a special occasion in your life with them. To let them know you’re celebrating you can pick up your free button when visiting a Disney Park.
Disney has a button designed for birthdays, I’m Celebrating… (you fill in the blank), 1st visit, and a happily ever after button (weddings, engagements, anniversaries). In order to acquire a button, simply ask any cast member or visit Guest Relations at the front of any of the Disney Theme Parks, or inside of a gift shop.
Read More: Ultimate Guide for Disney Birthday Pins
Free Disney Photopass
Disney supplies you with your very own personal photographer! Okay… not really, but they do have photographers scattered throughout each park ready to take your photo. In order to find these photographers just be on the lookout for those with a bright green shirt and a camera around their neck. You can also utilize the My Disney Experience app to find all the Photopass spots inside a Disney Park. You can access the locations by clicking on the map icon at the bottom and filtering to Photopass using the menu at the top.
The intention of these designated Photopass photographers is that you will purchase the official Disney photos. However, any of the photographers will also take a picture with your personal camera in addition to the official Disney shot. So don’t miss a single magical Disney moment and use those Photopass photographers to your advantage.
Disney World Park Maps
This one may seem like a given but park maps are perfect souvenirs and great for scrapbooking! The covers of the maps change as different promotions in the park happen so be sure to grab one for each visit you make to a park. It’s been so fun to watch the Disney parks changes over the years.
If you are staying at a Disney World hotel you can pick up all four parks at the same time as well as a map of Disney Springs and the water parks.
Stickers are with cast members throughout each park, it seems like if you are ever dealing with an unhappy kid, a cast member will quickly appear with a free sticker to help cheer them up. A few other places we have been able to snag a free Mickey sticker at character meet and greets, entrances to rides, restaurants, and the entrances to the theme parks.
Kids Crafts at Epcot’s World Showcase
Kidcot Fun Spots are a great way to get kids interested in learning about other countries around the world. Kidcot Fun Spots can be found in every country throughout Epcot’s World Showcase. At each stop, you and your children will have a chance to customize your souvenir (currently unique postcards themed after the country you get them in). Plus don’t miss getting the fun suitcase themed Ziploc bag to hold all your postcards.
In addition to coloring and drawing, each country has its own stamp to collect. The cast member at each location can leave you a special message in their language! I still have mine saved from when I was a kid and it’s been a fantastic memento even all these years later.
Free Disney Art Classes
Who doesn’t want a free drawing lesson from a real Disney Animator!?! I know I do! Teach to Draw Classes are held every day at the Art of Animation Resort at 11 am, 2 pm and 5 pm. You can find the drawing area in the main lobby right across from check-in. Once you are done with your creative masterpiece you get to take it home with you and they make a wonderful souvenir.
If you are heading over to Animal Kingdom be sure to head back on a train ride to Rafaki’s Planet Watch for The Animation Experience at Conservation Station. Here you will draw an animated Disney animal character
Campfire Sing A-Long with Chip and Dale
How does a night spent under the stars, singing Disney songs with Chip & Dale sound? Well you can join in on the fun with Chip and Dale for free! Roast some marshmallows (s’mores pack sold separately or you can bring your own) and sing along, plus you can even get some pictures snapped and autograph books signed. In order to join in on the fun all you need to do is visit the campsite located at Disney’s Fort Wilderness Resort.
Free Concerts at Disney World
Disney holds free concerts throughout the year at the America Gardens Theatre located outside the American Pavilion in Epcot. The musician lineup changes every year with each celebration. There is the Eat to the Beat Concert Series that ties into Epcot’s International Food and Wine Festival. Eat to the Beat happens in the Fall and has featured artists such as Hanson, Starship, and Sugar Ray. During the Spring you can see the Garden Rocks Concert Series that ties into the Flower and Garden Festival.
Isn’t it always so convenient when you bring someone along on your shopping trip so they can hold your bags for you? Staying on Disney property? Well if you are at a Disney World Resort they will bring the items to your hotel room free of charge. In order to take advantage of this free service all you have to do is ask the cashier when checking out. Then you will simply have to fill out a form with your name and hotel information and they will handle the rest for you.
Important Note: Disney used to have a service where you could shop at a theme park throughout the day and have your items sent to the front of the park while you ride all the rides and do all the fun Disney things. This service is NO LONGER available and has no current plans to return. A workaround if you purchased a large item you don’t want to carry around the park would be to rent a locker for the day and store your item in there.
Wake up Call
Mornings are truly the worst in my opinion but it’s hard to be mad at your alarm clock when it’s Mickey Mouse (or another friend of his). If you are a resort guest you can get a magical wake-up call by calling the front desk of your hotel or by pressing the wake-up call button on your in-room phone!
At Disney’s Animal Kingdom, you can follow in the footsteps of Russell, from UP! and become an official Wilderness Explorer. First, you must complete training by visiting various challenges placed throughout the park. You can collect over 30 different badges by going to all the challenge locations and you can keep your souvenir map!
If you plan to dine at Sci-Fi Dine-In over at Hollywood Studios you can also snag a driver’s license free of charge. If you have family members who aren’t of legal driving age, no worries, they can even get a license too. At the end of your meal, you will also be left with a “parking violation” aka, the receipt from your meal. It makes for a fun additional souvenir from this restaurant.
Epcot Festival Passports
While there are a few weeks a year that Epcot isn’t holding a festival odds are you will be able to pick up a passport for whichever festival is happening at that time. To kick off the year Epcot hosts the Festival of the Arts, followed by the Flower and Garden Festival, then the Food and Wine Festival for the summer and fall, and lastly the year concludes with the Festival of the Holidays.
What are some of your favorite freebies you have found at the Disney Parks? If you are looking for ideas of things to do without a ticket we have a whole guide for that too!
I have been visiting the parks annually since my parents first brought me at just a year old. Recently I was able to fulfill my life long dream of being a Florida local and moved from the wintery Northeast to the sunshine and fun of central Florida. Now I am hoping to share my Disney knowledge with you so you can have the best vacation possible!
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