When you’re in a magical place where happiness is all around you, it is easy to want to buy souvenirs to remember your trip. And while any souvenir can be “the perfect one” for a person, sometimes people get home and have buyer’s regret. Are you really going to get a lot of mileage out of a half dozen pair of ear headbands back in Albany? That Disney t-shirt is a great memory of your trip, but will you wear it to the office in Des Moines? (Floridians, long-sleeve spirit jerseys are a no-no for 90% of the year, so think twice before shelling out $60+ on each one!) And I do know many parents (myself included) who had a small mountain of Disney plush and little playsets of figurines for our child.
It’s easy to get carried away, but there are some souvenirs that do work well to give you great memories about your trip and are still practical enough to have you feel you got your money’s worth. Here are five suggestions — and yes, they are all souvenirs currently found in my own house.
Disney Blankets and Beach Towels
From a logistics standpoint, these are easy to carry home with you, either in your suitcase or just carried through at the airport. They also can sometimes be an impulse buy–in the fall, winter, and even early spring, it can get chilly enough where a kid might want something to cover up and stay warm. My preference is for beach towels — even if you don’t go to the beach or the pool often, I guarantee kids will love pulling out a special Mickey towel for their bath time. I’m also a huge fan of Disney throw blankets — we have one on each of the seating areas in our living room, plus one on our kid’s bed and one on my side of the bed (perfect if you have someone who steals the covers!).
Who doesn’t love Disney food? There’s so many great flavors that are wonderful to re-create at home. My personal favorite are the festival-themed cookbooks, but other cookbooks offering recipes from restaurants at Walt Disney World, Disneyland, and even Disney Cruise Line are fun to flip through and occasionally cook from. Disney, if you’re reading this, an English-language cookbook of dishes from Tokyo would be an instant best-seller…. just saying!
Not all souvenirs have to be expensive! Pressed pennies are a relatively inexpensive way to get a bunch of souvenirs for a small cost. Even better, they help you re-create your vacation memories. Years from now, you can pull out those pressed pennies to remember attractions you went on, hotels you stayed at, characters you met, and more.
Coffee Mugs or Water Bottles
There’s something magical about that morning beverage of choice served in a mug that brings up happy memories. And although a coffee mug collection can quickly snowball out of control if you buy every cute one out there, a mug here and there with a favorite character or image is something that you’ll likely get a lot of use out of at home on a regular basis. Not a drinker of the warm morning go juice? Refillable water bottles are useful in the park to help stay hydrated and then are great at home to remind you to keep drinking water!
Ornaments and Seasonal Decor
If you’re someone who likes to decorate for the holidays, having a special ornament to commemorate your Disney trip is a great way to relive those vacation memories for years to come. Ornaments come in such great variety, price range, and durability that you’re sure to find one that speaks to you or your family. For the best selection, try Mickey’s Days of Christmas at Disney Springs. If winter holidays aren’t necessarily your favorite time of year, you can also find a variety of decor for seasonal holidays throughout the year.
What are your favorite souvenirs to bring home from vacation? Have you ever bought something and had buyer’s remorse when you got home? Let us know in the comments!
First published October 18, 2020. Updated July 24, 2021.