Theme Park Tickets and Annual Passes

Theme Park tickets and annual passes

Knowing which ticket to purchase at various theme parks can be quite confusing, so I thought I’d take a moment to describe the options each person can receive.  Before we begin, you should know that Disney, Universal, Busch Gardens and SeaWorld see everyone between the ages of 3-9 as a child, everyone 10 and up are considered adults for tickets.  Children under 3 are FREE of charge.

Walt Disney World tickets

In February 2016 Walt Disney World moved to a tiered ticket system for 1 Day tickets.  Guests purchasing a 1 Day ticket will need to review the chart below for the price for their day of visit.

1.  Base Ticket

Everyone begins with a Magic Your Way Base Ticket from which to build their ticket package.  This Base Ticket allows you to enter one of the Four Major Theme Parks (Animal Kingdom, EPCOT, Hollywood Studios or Magic Kingdom) per day purchased.  You may not transfer to another park within the same theme park day with a base ticket.  Many people ask if they can just use another day from their Base Ticket.  The answer is a emphatic NO.  The Disney World Ticket scanning system will not allow this type of usage.  You CAN, however, enter the SAME park more than once per day.  If you would like to transfer from one park to another in a single day, the Park Hopper option may be your best bet.

Walt Disney World Magic Your Way tickets expire 14 days after first usage, unless you choose the no expiration option.

2.  Park Hopper Option
The Park Hopper allows each guest with this option to “Hop” from park to park in Walt Disney World.  You should know that the “Hop” may take 30 minutes or more with Disney transportation.  The parks are very far apart.  The Park Hopper is a one time add on that costs $35 plus tax per person for a 1 day ticket or $57 plus tax for the length of your ticket for 2 days or more.
Guests can add on the Park Hopper option or any other option after arrival at the resort.  If you are uncertain if you want to “Hop,” you might want to choose the Base Ticket.

3. Water Park Fun & More Option

This option provides a certain number of admissions or rounds of golf or putt putt golf:

Admission to Blizzard Beach water park
Admission to Typhoon Lagoon water park
Admission to DisneyQuest
Admission to ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex (includes 30 minutes of game play at PlayStation Pavilion)
Round of putt putt golf at Fantasia Gardens (near Epcot) or Winter Summerland (next to Blizzard Beach) (before 4:00 pm)
Round of golf at Oak Trail family walking course.  This is a 9 hole par 3 family course. (Advance reservations required. Adult clubs and pull cart not included.
With the Water Park Fun & More Option, you can pick and choose which of these you desire to use, use them in any order you desire, and even use more than one in one day. Each admission counts as one “visit” removed from your total, even if you go on the same day.

TIP:  If you plan to spend time using this option, you may consider fewer days on your Base Ticket.  Most Walt Disney World guests never use all their Water Park Fun & More Options.

Guests can add on the Water Park Fun & More Option or any other option after arrival at the resort.  If you are uncertain if you want to use this option,  you might want to choose the Base Ticket and add on at the resort.

4.  Magic Your Way with Park Hopper and Water Park Fun & More

This ticket allows you to combine the options of the Park Hopper option and the Water Park Fun & More option.  The Magic Your Way with Park Hopper and Water Park Fun & More is a one time add on.  Guests can add these features after arrival at the resort.  If you are uncertain if you want to use this option,  you might want to choose the Base Ticket and add on at the resort.

Many guests enjoy visiting the parks more than 10 days per year and wish to save in advance on those days AND take advantage of the discounts that are entitled to Passholders.  The price of an Annual Pass is less than the cost of a 10 day Park Hopper plus a 2 day Park Hopper.

2016 Disney World ticket cost-1 Day tiered pricing 2016 Disny World ticket cost

5.  Annual Passes

Platinum Pass
Provides one year of unlimited admission to the four major parks (Magic Kingdom, Epcot, Disney’s Hollywood Studios and Animal Kingdom), plus free parking and free Photopass downloads. All prices listed include tax.
First time Platinum Pass: $797.69 for all ages.
Renewal Platinum Pass: $676.28 for all ages.

Platinum Plus Pass
Provides one year of unlimited admission to the four major parks (Magic Kingdom, Epcot, Disney’s Hollywood Studios and Animal Kingdom), the water parks and DisneyQuest, plus free parking and free Photopass downloads. All prices listed include tax.
First time Pass: $882.89 for all ages.
Renewal  Pass: $750.83 for all ages.

Premier Passport
Good for one year of unlimited admission at both Disneyland and Walt Disney World. It offers the same privileges and discounts as a Platinum Plus Pass at Walt Disney World (see above) and a Signature Plus Passport at Disneyland. All prices listed include tax.
Premier Passport: $1,485.77 for all ages. (No renewal discount.)

Florida Resident Annual Pass Pricing

First time Florida Annual Passes can be purchased at DisneyWorld.com (you’ll receive a voucher that must be redeemed at Disney World ticket booths), or just wait and purchase at the theme park ticket booths. If you buy online, you can make a down payment equal to the price of a non-discounted one-day Magic Your Way base ticket and then pay the remainder through 12 recurring automatic monthly payments scheduled for the year, interest and finance charge free.
You must have proof of Florida residency!
Renewal Florida Resident Platinum Passes can be purchased at the theme park ticket booths, at DisneyWorld.com, or by mail.

Florida Resident Platinum Pass Discount Price

  • First Time Pass: $691.19 for all ages, including tax
  • Renewal Pass: $584.69 for all ages, including tax

Florida Resident Plus Pass Discount Price

  • First Time Pass: $776.39 for all ages
  • Renewal Pass: $659.24 for all ages

Florida Resident Gold Pass
This special pass is only available to Florida residents and DVC members. The Gold Pass is a specially-priced Annual Pass that gives admission to all four of the major Walt Disney World theme parks, but with blockout dates during the busiest times of year. Gold Passholders receive the same discounts on resort rooms, meals and merchandise as regular Annual Passholders, as well as theme park parking and free PhotoPass downloads.

  • First Time Pass: $584.69 for all ages, including tax.
  • Renewal Pass: $496.29 for all ages, including tax.

The blockout dates for Gold Passes are basically Christmas/New Years plus the peak spring break season: December 17, 2015 ‒ January 1, 2016 and March 19, 2016 ‒ April 1, 2016, for a total of 30 days.

Florida Resident Silver Pass
This special pass is only available to Florida residents. The Silver Pass is a specially-priced Annual Pass that gives admission to all four of the major Walt Disney World theme parks, but with blockout dates during the busiest times of year. Silver Passholders receive the same discounts on resort rooms, meals and merchandise as regular Annual Passholders, as well as theme park parking.

  • First Time Silver Pass: $414.29 for all ages, including tax.
  • Renewal Silver Pass: $351.45 for all ages, including tax.

The blockout dates for Silver Passes are:  December 17, 2015 ‒ January 1, 2016, March 19, 2016 ‒ April 1, 2016 and June 6 ‒ August 11, 2016, for a total of 97 days.

Florida Resident Weekday Select Pass
The Florida Resident Weekday Select Pass is a specially-priced Annual Pass that gives admission to all four of the major Walt Disney World theme parks on weekdays (Monday-Friday) ONLY. There are also blockout dates during the busiest times of year. Weekday Select Passholders receive the same discounts on resort rooms, meals and merchandise as regular Annual Passholders. The Weekday Select Pass now INCLUDES free parking.

  • First Time Pass: $275.84 for all ages, including tax.
  • Renewal Pass: $234.30 for all ages, including tax.

The blockout dates for Florida Resident Weekday Select Passes are all Saturdays and Sundays year round plus December 17, 2015 ‒ January 1, 2016, March 19, 2016 ‒ April 1, 2016 and June 6 ‒ August 11, 2016.

Florida Resident “After 4” Epcot Annual Pass
This is a rather obscure pass that gives admission to Epcot only in the afternoon and evening (after 4:00 pm). It is used by local residents who only want admission to Epcot in order to enjoy the restaurants and evening shows, and maybe hit an attraction or two. Epcot After 4 Passholders receive the same discounts on resort rooms, meals and merchandise as regular Annual Passholders. The Epcot After 4 Pass now INCLUDES free parking.

  • First Time Pass: $265.19 for all ages, including tax.
  • Renewal Pass: $179.99 for all ages, including tax.

Florida Resident “After 2PM” Water Park Annual Pass
This pass gives admission to the Blizzard Beach and Typhoon Lagoon water parks only in the afternoon and evening (after 2:00 pm). This annual pass does NOT provide the benefits of other Annual Passes, such as room rate discounts.
“After 2” Water Park Annual Pass:

  • $69.23 Adult (10+)
  • $62.84 Child (3-9), including tax.

10 thoughts on “Theme Park Tickets and Annual Passes”

  1. I’m visiting family in January and will be visiting the Magic Kingdom for one day. My mom has two tickets from January 2006 that were not used that she paid extra to waive their expiration. My mom is not going this time, but my girlfriend and I are. Since my mom purchased those tickets 11 years ago, will my girlfriend and I be able to use them? They are on blue cards…one of them was actually mine from my first trip to Disney!

  2. My travel agent just sent me my park only ticket reservation confirmation number. I had one number for the adult tickets, and one number for the child tickets. I entered in the confirmation numbers on MDE and they are linked to my account, now, I was asked to assign each ticket to a person. I did. But, when I receive them in the mail, how will I know which ticket belongs to who? I’m assuming, they all have their own numbers & should be specifically assigned to each person?
    Just wondering if I should have waited to link them, instead of linking them all at once, with the confirmation numbers?

    1. MagicBands are sent to any Disney Resort hotel guest, but if you wait to buy tickets, you’ll need to link your tickets.

  3. Due to unforeseen circumstances I was not able to purchase tickets in advance. Actually buying them friday. I’ll be in Florida sunday.. So tickets obviously won’t be mailed to me in time.. What do I do?

  4. Is there an expiration date on tickets? Just wondering how far in advance I could start purchasing tickets, if I’m planning a vacation way in advance.

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