If you’ve set your mind on a trip to Walt Disney World, you know there’s a lot to consider. Besides deciding is where to stay at Disney World, you have to figure out what you’re going to do so you can buy the right tickets. You can have Magic Your Way, but it comes at a price. And while there are ways to save on Disney Park tickets you can be easily overwhelmed and just throw in the towel.
Disney World theme park tickets come in a variety of options. Besides the standard Magic Your Way tickets, Disney does offer special tickets for Florida residents as well as military personnel and their family. Since those are special types of tickets I won’t mention them in much detail. Disney World tickets for military personnel and their family are discounted and require appropriate identification. They can not be purchased at the gate but can be purchased at Shades of Green. Many military base exchanges also sell the special discounted military tickets as well. Florida residents can purchase their tickets at Disney World or as part of their travel package from an authorized Disney World travel agent.
Regardless of the whether you are a Florida resident or military, you’ll need to know some basics about the Magic Your Way park tickets so you know what to purchase. Of course, your Disney World travel agent can help you with this but if you’re trying to plan ahead and budget knowing your ticket options will be helpful. Keep in mind that ticket prices can change at any time until they are purchased, and, historically, if Disney raises the prices it will be done without much notice and likely over a weekend in June.
So, where to start?
Base tickets are called Magic Your Way tickets and can be purchased for one day up to 10 days. (Note: the ticket options for UK residents are different). These Magic Your Way tickets will get you in to one park each day for as many days as your purchase. You can not enter more than one park in a day so you would need to be aware of this when considering your dining options.
Now for all the add-ons. If you want to enter more than one park in a day you’ll need to add the Park Hopper options. If you want to go to the water parks, Disney Quest, golfing or the sports complex you’ll need the Water Park, Fun and More option. Finally, since Disney park tickets expire 14-days after their first use you may add the No Expiration option so your unused days will never expire.
How do you know if you want the Park Hopper option? If you plan on going to more than one park each day, you will need the Park Hopper feature on your ticket. You may not just use another day. So if you buy a 10 day ticket but will only be there for 7 days you can’t use one of your 3 “extra days” to enter a second park in the same day. When you buy the Park Hopper option it is applied to every day on your ticket, whether you use it or not. That’s why it’s important to know if you’re going to park-hop. If you’re not, then why pay for something you won’t use.
You want to go to one of Disney’s amazing water parks, but is the Water Park, Fun & More (WPF&M) option the best value? The WPF&M option provides the choice of admission to Disney’s Blizzard Beach water park, Disney’s Typhoon Lagoon water park, DisneyQuest, a round of golf at Disney’s nine hole Oak Trail Golf Course , or entry to Disney’s Wide World of Sports Complex. The WPF&M option is equal to the days of your ticket. With the exception of the 1-Day ticket which gets 2 Water Park Fun and More visits, a 2-Day gets 2 Water Park Fun and More visits, 3-Days 3 Water Park Fun and More visits, and so forth. This is not a cheap add-on so you’ll want to be sure you can take advantage of all the extras you get with this option.
If you take short trips to Disney World on a regular basis, buying an extended multi-day ticket with the no-expiration option might be a better deal over the long term. The more days you buy, the cheaper the per-day price. The price per day on a 10-day ticket is less than that for a 2-day ticket. The No Expiration option would allow you to buy a longer term ticket to take advantage of that lower per-day price and still use it from time to time without that 14-day expiration policy. You would also not need to pay anything additional if ticket prices increase. Your tickets with the No Expiration option are good until they are all used. For some, this may be an excellent option.
If you’re purchasing a travel package through your authorized Disney World travel agent, you still get to choose which kind of tickets you want. So while a lot of the decision-making is handled, you’ll still need to know what kind of tickets you’ll need. One good thing, though, is that if you just buy the base Magic Your Way tickets you can upgrade them if you need. You can not, however, get your money back if you buy an add-on but don’t use it.
You can also combine the options. You can get the Magic Your Way with Park Hopper (with our without No Expiration), Magic Your Way with Water Park, Fun & More (with or without No Expiration), Magic Your Way with No-Expiration, Magic Your Way with Park Hoper and Water Park Fun & More and of course the base Magic Your Way (with or without No Expiration). See, right there you have 9 options!
And let’s not forget that Disney World offers Annual Passes. There are quite a few options with the annual pass but I’ll talk about those another time. However, if you plan on going to Disney World more than 14 days in a one-year time period then you should definitely consider an annual pass.
One you decide which type of Disney Parks ticket you want, you’ll need to actually purchase it. Even this decision brings you a variety of options. Of course you can purchase it at the gate of any of the four parks or at any of the Disney World resorts. In addition, if you are using an authorized Disney World travel agent you can purchase the tickets with you travel package if you stay on-property. There are also a number of reputable authorized Disney World ticket resellers. I’ve personally purchased from Undercover Tourist and find them to have excellent customer service as well as some of the best discounted Disney World tickets. Since they purchase in volume, they’re able to offer a small discount (3-5%, depending on the type of ticket). I am not an affiliate, nor do I get compensated if you buy from Undercover Tourist. But, I’ve purchased from them myself and have been very pleased. I know there are others, but I have no personal experience with them.
So now, you’ve started your Disney World vacation planning and have decided where to stay at Disney World. Once you determine your Disney World ticket choice you’re well on your way to the most magical vacation.
When is your next trip to Disney World?