This is a guest post from my friend Michele…
It’s no secret, I love Disney. For those who know me, it’s also a well known fact that I love to shop and get great deals. Combining my two favorite pastimes is a dream come true, and this is exactly what happened the last time I was able to visit my Happy Place, Walt Disney World. While on vacation at Disney, I find myself compelled to pretty much browse through as many stores as possible, or as many stores as I can talk my sons into going through. Little boys can be bribed with the promise of checking out Pirates of the Caribbean swag, so it works most times.
Anyhow, as we browse, I do have a strategy. Look for red stickers. Easy as that. For example, in late August of 2011, we took advantage of the Free Dining offer and headed down to Disney. While at Hollywood Studios, of course we went on the Tower of Terror. As we were walking off of the ride, we looked around the gift shop. While looking around, I found a small rack of Jack Skellington pajama sets for women, originally marked $39.99. Well, low and behold, those jammies had a red sticker on the tag, $15.00! In looking further, they also had nice TofT mugs and picture frames, all containing the red clearance stickers. Granted, I did look through the store a few times while the kids were checking things out, and I didn’t even see the sale items at first. I was being “frugal” and decided to think about the pajamas. We went into a another store just up the way, and they had the same pajamas for full price. Needless to say, I walked myself back into the TofT store and scooped up that deal and spent the $15.00. I was excited at the great deal I found, and decided to keep an eye out for those red stickers while shopping on the rest of our trip. For the record, they also had those SAME jammies at the World of Disney store in DTD for regular price. What a deal!
Disney’s Hollywood Studios isn’t the only place I found some shopping steals! Mouse Gear at Epcot is probably one of my most favorite stores on Disney Property. There’s just something about that store. I don’t know if it’s because of the multi-colored themed Mickey items, featuring representation of the different countries in World Showcase, or if it’s just the merchandise in general. On the far left hand side of the store, they sell the Epcot themed items, including picture frames, t-shirts, collector plates, magnets, and a variety of sweatshirts. It’s a great area. In going through the racks, among the regular priced items, I found some cute Epcot Logo sweatshirts in child sizes, with that glorious red sticker attached. What would have cost around $40.00, was on sale for $10.00. Now THAT is what I call a great deal! Had I not started browsing, I wouldn’t have seen the sale items.
Speaking of Epcot, and World Showcase, lets talk about the Italy Pavilion. As most of us know, some of the merchandise in the various countries of world showcase can get pretty pricy. There are a lot of specialty items, most of which I just look at, and wish I could get something to take home. Well, while killing time waiting for our dinner reservation at Via Nappoli, I once again went browsing. The gift shop had beautiful blown glass vases, figures, jewelry, etc. Very pretty. As I was looking and dreaming, what do I find? You guessed it, red stickers! I was able to get lovely glass blown rings, with made in Italy stickers, for $1.99! How exciting is that? People may say I take “forever” in the shops while at Disney, but I find some great deals.
So, I suppose my point in all of this is to really look, and take your time while shopping on your Disney Vacation. I have happened upon red sticker deals at The Emporium at Magic Kingdom, and D-Street in Downtown Disney as well, among other places. In my experiences, the clearance deals aren’t necessarily marked on their own rack, you have to really look. My family may tease me on taking “forever” in the shops at Disney, but it’s worth it when coming across those red sticker deals!
Michele is the CEO and head Writer for The Main Street Mouse, which is an interactive Disney Fan Site with Disney information, blogs, trivia, and forums. She is also a Mom of two boys, and has been a Disney enthusiast for many years.