Florida is a land of attractions, from Disney World Resort and Universal Studios in Orlando to its hundreds of beautiful beaches, so there's no shortage of ways you can spend your family vacation in the Sunshine State.
Travel isn't cheap, though, at least not generally speaking. With premium vacation packages, the rising price of gas, and even hurricanes ravaging Florida, it's getting harder and harder to plan family outings without spending a ton of money.
Whether you're planning your vacation on a tight budget or just hoping to save a little money on your trip to Florida, the following free guides and planners will help direct you to the cheapest hotels, biggest savings deals on vacation packages, and best ways to tour the state on a dime. Remember, you don't have to stick to major studio theme parks, as small Florida towns have their own charms. Camping can offer a significant savings over hotel chains, too.
Attraction and Park Guides
If you're in Florida with your family on vacation, chances are the little ones want to do one thing: go to Disney World (or Universal Studios). However, finding a deal on travel and accommodations may be difficult for these world famous resorts.
Fortunately, Disney World has a free vacation planning video that answers a few questions you might have about planning your trip to "The Happiest Place on Earth." Disney Planning is a fantastic place to guide you through financially planning your trip. If you'd like to take a cruise with your family instead of staying landlocked in Florida, you might consider the Disney Cruise Line planning tools.
Universal Orlando also offers a comprehensive Vacation Planning Guide on their website, which offers insight into how to effectively plan your trip to the company's many theme parks in Orlando. Whether you're visiting the Wizarding World of Harry Potter or Universal Studios Florida, you're sure to get a better deal if you check out their website first.
Beach and City Guides
Your first stop on a trip to Florida should be its official tourism website, which offers plenty of free Florida vacation guides and a collection of electronic resources—from eBooks to printable PDF brochures—in French, German, Spanish, and English.
Among the guides you'll find on this all-encompassing vacation planning asset are maps of Florida bicycle trails, an essential list of Florida films, and places for outdoor adventure (canoeing, kayaking, fishing, and hiking) across the Sunshine State. The extensive Official Florida Vacation Guide features tons of online information available at any time, like the Florida Camping Directory, and a complete map of the state to make sure you plan the best route for your next family vacation.
If you're hoping to get more specific within Florida, each city and most beaches in the state also offer a visitor website and digital resources. Check out the Daytona Beach, Fort Lauderdale, Jacksonville, Orlando, Miami, and Tampa Bay Area vacation planning guides for specific information about these popular southern cities.