A common question about runDisney races are how much they’ll cost you and what you should budget for if you plan on participating in one. Well, as it happens, there’s some amazing new technology that I happen to know about, called a spreadsheet, and I’ve been using them to plan my last 3 runDisney trips, so I actually know how much to budget for each event. I’ll give you the Dopey numbers in detail. If you want the numbers for Wine & Dine or Tower of Terror just let me know.
Registration Costs – $529.15
The registration cost for the Dopey Challenge in 2014 was $495.00 but with Active.com registration fees, the total actually came to well over $495. With the commemorative pin, which was $14.95, I paid $544.10.
Race Merchandise - $78.00
This year, I spent $78.00 at the expo. I purchased 4 magnets ($5.95-$7.95) and an “I Did It” tech shirt ($34.95) with Disney Visa reward dollars (the equivalent of using a Disney giftcard). I also received a 10% discount off my purchase with my annual passholder discount (I’ve also used a Disney Visa Cardholder discount at the expo), which was good on official Disney merchandise, not at any of the other vendors (and I am thinking not good on the New Balance sneakers).
Hotel – $1,971.02
I stayed at a deluxe, Disney hotel, the Boardwalk Inn, for 7 days. This was with an annual passholder discount that came to just over 30% off the rack rate for our room and I split it with my sister who came for the weekend as well. If I had stayed at the Art of Animation, which I had originally booked, it would have cost me around $891.00 total for the week. Also, the Boardwalk was the cheaper of the three Epcot hotels.
Food – $50 / day
I budgeted about $50 a day for food and stuck with it. Sample eating day: after the half I opted for a buffet breakfast ($18.99 at the Captain’s Grill without characters but the waiter let us take a to go carton and extra cups of coffee with us) and a large lunch/dinner to refuel before the marathon at Via Napoli ($8.00 for fritto di verdura [fried veggies] and $17.00 for an individual pizza) day’s total came to: $43.99 plus tax and tip. Via Napoli is a more pricey place to eat but I love their food.
Add to this my $189 round trip airfare for a rough total of.. $3,117.17
My out of pocket expenses were about $900 less than that the above price because I split the hotel bill, which was my biggest expenditure, but to pay it off I put aside about $260 a month for 12 months. In 2014, I don’t anticipate doing any other runDisney races- Tower of Terror wasn’t worth it and since I’m doing the NYC Marathon, which falls the weekend before Wine & Dine, I won’t be signing up for that race either.
Basically, there are a lot of ways to do it for more or less than what I paid, just be sure to do your homework in advance and use the power of the spreadsheet.
**Edited to add: This DOES NOT include park tickets. I’m an annual passholder so that cost was actually lumped in with my Tower of Terror registration costs since that race fell right around my renewal time.**
Any questions or money saving tips anyone wants to share?