Family grabbing snacks from cart
  • On Jul 23, 2022
    Iris from Tamaulipas Asked Please note that experiences, policies, pricing and other offerings are subject to change and may have changed since the date of this answer.

    Can I use a disney gift card purchased at a location near me (like target or walmart) on dining, souvenirs, or snack stands at disney world?

    Iris,

    Thanks for asking your question to planDisney!

    Yes, you absolutely can use gift cards to pay for purchases made at Walt Disney World. As you have learned, Disney still requires you have a traditional credit card down on your hotel room, but I have used Gift Cards (both Disney gift cards, and other varieties) on many a trip to Walt Disney World. 

    Of course, if you are not staying at a Disney resort hotel, they will still accept your Disney gift cards at their shops, restaurants, and stands. 

    Now assuming you are staying at a Disney resort hotel, here is what I like to do, and what I think will help you with your money management planning. 

    Sometime after checking in to your hotel, visit the front desk and have the gift card credits applied to your resort account. When you charge food or other purchases to your MagicBand the purchase will go on your resort room account. With that balance of your gift cards already put onto your hotel account, they deduct those costs from your credit balance rather than bill the credit card you have on file for your room.

    Do be sure when you charge food or merchandise that you select the option to apply the charge to your room bill. Sometimes the My Disney Experience App will initially opt to a different payment type, like Apple Pay. You just have to select your room as your primary charge, or toggle to it when paying. 

    BONUS TIP #1
    One very important note to be sure of. If you have several cards, I do not recommend that you put all their balances over to your resort hotel account at the start of the trip. Why? Well, Disney cannot refund any of those transfers to you, so if you put $100 of a gift card onto your resort balance and only spend $90 of that, you lose the $10 balance.

    When I go, I put down only that amount that I know I will spend, and every couple of days I will return to the front desk and use more cards as I get closer to spending that credit balance. Oh, and remember that you can always check your balance from your My Disney Experience app!

    BONUS TIP #2
    Gift cards are a great item for kids to list on birthday or Christmas wish lists. My teenagers have a hard time finding gift idea suggestions for relatives that are reasonably priced, so this gives them a lot of flexibility. It also gives the gift giver a lot of room to give what they deem appropriate. 

    Please feel free to write me back if you have any follow-up questions.

    Have a Magical Vacation!

    Doug
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Meet the Panelist: Doug, Indiana

I am one of the Dads on the Moms Panel, and I love to help parents plan their vacation, with a focus on showing them how it can be fun for them too. I am also here to help Dads plan some nice surprises for the Moms in their life (they deserve it!). Learn More About Doug

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