By the co-author of The easy Guide to Your Walt Disney World Visit 2020, the best-reviewed Disney World guidebook series ever.

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The Tightwad’s Guide to How to Eat at Walt Disney World, Continued

By Dave Shute

This is the second page on this topic.  For the first page, click here.


Even well-stocked Disney stores have a very limited selection. Moreover, as noted above, beer and smokes will kill your budget.

So the answer—especially if you are looking for beer and smokes—Mickey would not approve, but Donald would—is to find your way to getting at least some of your supplies outside of your resort.

There are three Hess stores on property—one of which is accessible to all Disney World resort guests, and another to those staying at a deluxe Epcot resort.

Hess isn’t going to solve “food” problems—e.g. you can get bread there, but not butter—but is great for snacks and other convenience store items.

Note also that you can’t get hard liquor in the Hess stores noted below—for these you’ll need to find your way to one of the two grocery stores listed after them, each of which is accompanied by a liquor store. Hard liquor savings can repay the cost of a cab.

Two of these Hess stores are easily reachable to Walt Disney World resort hotel guests without cars—one near the BoardWalk Inn, best for those at one of the Epcot deluxe resorts, and one near Downtown Disney, best for everyone else.

Every Disney resort has buses to Downtown Disney, and there’s a Hess just a short walk from the Pleasure Island bus stop at Downtown Disney.

  • The Downtown Disney Hess is across Buena Vista Drive from the main downtown Disney complex
  • Specifically, it’s across from Entrance 2 to Downtown Disney
  • If you are already in Downtown Disney (DTD), when you are done with DTD, find the exit from the DTD shopping and walking area to the parking lots between the Lego store and T-Rex.
  • Go a little left and walk up the roadway that separates Parking lot D from Parking Lot E
  • This will take you to the intersection of Entrance 2—the Hess Store is across the street.
  • As I write this, Disney buses stop very close to this key DTD intersection. This is the “Pleasure Island” stop—the second stop in Downtown Disney. If you have no other interest in Downtown Disney, you can get off your bus, cross the street, do your shopping, and get back to the bus stop maybe even before the next bus gets there!!

There’s another Hess, near the BoardWalk Inn, which is convenient to the Epcot deluxe resorts.

  • Make your way to the main Boardwalk Lobby, and exit to the parking lot side. Walk through the parking lots. Just as you pass the guard shack, you will come to the access road to the BoardWalk, Epcot Resorts Boulevard.
  • Cross this road and look for the road basically dead ahead but a little bit to your left. This will lead you into the Hess.


Getting to a grocery store requires a rental car or a cab.

Cab fare can kill your food savings…unless you are buying a reasonable pile of hard liquor (both of the stores below are adjacent to liquor stores…it’s like I picked them for that reason…). Ask you bell service what a cab would cost, and make your own decision.

(Note that there are other perfectly good grocery stores nearby—I pick these two only because they are (relatively) simple to get to, adjacent to liquor stores, and simple to get back from.)

To get to Winn-Dixie (preferred, as in a slightly less congested and less touristy area, but requires getting on I-4)

  • Address: 11957 S Apopka Vineland Rd, Orlando, FL 32836
  • Follow signs to I-4, and then I-4 East towards Orlando
  • Exit at exit 68 (535/Lake Buena Vista)
  • Get in the left lane and go left onto 535 North
  • Move to and stay in the middle lanes, and stay straight on this road, which will change names to Apopka Vineland Road (you’ll know you are on Apopka Vineland when the road changes to two lanes in each direction)
  • Keep your eye out for a Walgreens on the left. Just a block or two after it, you’ll see an ABC liquor store sign on the right. Turn right into the parking lot
  • The Winn Dixie will be further back; you already know where the liquor store is!
  • To return to your hotel, reverse your directions, and take any of the Disney World exits off of I-4 west

To get to Publix

  • Publix: 29 Blake Boulevard , Kissimmee FL 34746
  • For Publix, follow signs from wherever you are staying to 192, and then take 192 East
  • Pass Interstate 4
  • Immediately before  you pass under the next major overpass (which is FL 417) turn right inot the shopping center with the tater tower
  • To return, reverse the directions to get to 192 West and then follow the signs to the Magic Kingdom and Disney’s Hollywood Studios.
  • Take this exit for ALL Walt Disney World destinations, even though the sign lists only the two theme parks.

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1 Jennifer M { 01.20.14 at 4:14 pm }

Hi Dave, just curious as to what other types of drinks are in a Hess store? You said no hard alcohol, so does that mean you can’t get coolers like smirnoff mixed drinks, or bacardi mixed drinks?

2 Dave { 01.21.14 at 7:54 am }

Jennifer I dunno! I’m so tightly focused on beer, potato chips and donuts at Hess that I get tunnel vision! I’ll be there later this week, and try to cover this key point!

3 mel { 10.29.14 at 3:58 pm }

We are renting a car from the Airport to Disney car care. (24 hour rental) We come in on a Saturday. My husband will pick up the car and our kids and I will be taking the Disney transportation so we can get very small economy car and our luggage will still be delivered. Our trip is in November and it was only 22 dollars to rent the car from Alamo. We are going to go to the store the day we arrive. We always buy beer (buy the aluminum screw top lids so you can sit by the pool with them), water, fruit, veggies, a roll of paper towels, breakfast food and snacks. We get the dining plan “free” so most food is covered but I like to stretch it by eating breakfast in the room and we need our fresh food and who wants to pay 6 dollars for a pool side beer!! If you want to eliminate weight on your baggage you could buy most your toiletries too. Buy Suave it’s cheap, so if you don’t use it all you can just leave it there:) We are then going to drop off the car at the car care center the next day and they will shuttle us to the parks. So simple and you can pick your own stuff and get it at a place like walmart that is cheaper. For the price of delivery. This may not work for others but it works for us:)

4 Dave { 10.30.14 at 6:43 am }

Mel, what a great plan!!

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