One of the questions we’re asked the most is where and how to buy tickets for the Disney Parks. There are a number of options on the amount of days to buy, whether to link it to a package and where to buy those tickets. This post is our guide for buying tickets to Disneyland and Walt Disney World.
We should start off by noting the difference in ticket options between Disneyland and Walt Disney World. Outside of the obvious like one resort having 2 parks and residing in California while the other has 4 and is in Florida, buying tickets at each resort has some subtle differences starting with the amount of days you can buy for. At Disneyland Resort, the max amount of days in the park you can buy is 5. Regardless of how many days you buy, you have 14 days after first use to complete your ticket.
Walt Disney World doubles that amount, offering as many as 10 day tickets. The amount of days you have to use the ticket at WDW varies by the amount you buy, it goes as follows:
- 2 day ticket must be used within 4 days.
- 3 day ticket must be used within 5 days.
- 4 day ticket must be used within 7 days.
- 5 day ticket must be used within 8 days.
- 6 day ticket must be used within 9 days.
- 7 day ticket must be used within 10 days.
- 8 day ticket must be used within 12 days.
- 9 day ticket must be used within 13 days.
- 10 days ticket must be used within 14 days.
As of January 2023, guests must reserve all dates that they’d like to visit the Disney Theme Parks. Once tickets are bought, you can do this from within the app or on the Disneyland/Disney World website. We don’t anticipate the reservation system to change anytime soon so make sure the dates you want are available before booking your vacation.
Where to buy tickets?
Now that we’re through all of the mundane stuff, let’s get to why you’re probably reading this. We all want to score a deal when it comes to buying things and that’s especially true for something that costs as much as Disney Parks tickets. Unfortunately, that hope in the back of your mind of finding Disney tickets for half the price is unrealistic. If you search around hard enough of Craigslist, you might find that offer. When you do find that offer, we recommend that you immediately exit the page and go to trusted sources (see below) to buy the goods. Counterfeit tickets do exist and if you go through an entity that isn’t Disney or an authorized reseller or travel agent, then you run a (high) risk of getting scammed.
The good news is that you can find a discount! We recommend Park Prodigy, who offers tickets to both Disneyland and Walt Disney World. Both resorts have discounted tickets (and vacation packages) on that website. There are a number of sites that do something similar and they are safe and easy to use.
The other option is buying directly from Disney. While this is the path of least resistance, it is also the path to the highest price. Buying elsewhere will save you a few dollars for a few more churros and Dole Whips and only requires linking that ticket within the app. It’s a painless process. Still, buying from the Disney website or actually at the Disney Parks is an option.
Note that if you are buying an Annual Pass then you will need to buy it directly from Disney. You could buy a discounted ticket and then upgrade it at the ticket booth but this is far more complicated than anything else we’ve laid out in this post. If you’re interested in this, leave us a comment below.
What tickets to buy?
We’ve covered this topic elsewhere on the blog in more specific terms, detailing how many days we recommend at each park. For now, we’ll give a brief rundown of the value involved.
The easy answer is that the more days you buy the cheaper the price per day is. For example, a 1 day ticket at Disneyland will cost at least (depending on the day you visit) $104. It’s likely to be higher. A 5 day ticket will cost $415 which is $83/day. The savings are even greater at WDW where buying a 10 day ticket will get you all the way down to a $60 range per day. Of course, you have to balance these things as most people don’t need to spend that long at the resort and you are still spending extra money each day you go. But the value per day does go up for the more days you buy.
As for all the other bells and whistles, both Disneyland and Disney World offer park hopper tickets that allow guests to go to multiple parks per day. If you can stomach the price increase, we do recommend this as it’s far more convenient.
At Disney World, you can add in a Water Parks and Sports option for $70 per ticket. This will get you visits to Disney’s excellent water parks, Typhoon Lagoon and Blizzard Beach. The ‘and Sports’ addition to the ticket doesn’t add a ton of value unless you’re going out of your way to use them. We do love the water parks but hardly ever go because there’s so much else to do at the resort. I think this one falls under the personal preference tag, as the value isn’t bad. It’s more just a matter of how much time you have. A quick tip: you can go to the water parks on a day that you aren’t using one of your Disney Parks tickets and it won’t count against your days used. In fact, we absolutely recommend going this route.
There are a number of tickets options and ways to buy tickets at Disneyland and Walt Disney World. We hope this guide has cleared up some of that process. If you still have questions, please let us know in the comments below and we’d be happy to help!
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Categories: Vacation Tips