Rumors have been swirling for the past few weeks about a new form of park ticket pricing that included variable pricing based on the time of year. Well, that ball dropped last week when Disney did indeed add seasonal pricing for tickets but for single day tickets only which is a bit of good news. Luckily we only saw an across the board price increase in the multi-day park tickets, not the seasonal pricing used for single day tickets. Here at Frugal Mouse we always shed a tear every time Disney raises prices on us. Let’s take a look at the new prices and some strategies to save some money on park tickets.
Here at Frugal Mouse, we always shed a tear every time Disney raises prices on us. Park tickets were already very expensive, now they’re even more so expensive.
It’s been no secret that Disney has been looking for ways to “encourage” guests to attend during less busy times of year. During times like Spring Break, 4th of July and Christmas, you almost can’t move in the parks because of the crowds. Disney’s only option is to close the front gates, much to the dismay of guests that can’t get in.
It makes sense for Disney, they want to keep their parks, hotels and restaurants full all throughout the year. Unfortunately, when you’re seeing the Magic Kingdom close due to capacity and 3 hours waits for Space Mountain, it just isn’t fun anymore.
Seasonal Single Day Park Tickets
Let’s start off by taking a look at Disney’s new seasonal pricing model for park tickets. The calendar year is now broken down into three “seasons”, similar to the different seasons that resorts use for pricing. The three seasons are value, regular and peak. Take a look at the new pricing below:
|One Day Park Tickets||Magic Kingdom||Epcot, Hollywood Studios, Animal Kingdom|
One day park ticket prices now vary from a low of $103.31 to a high of $132.06, quite a large variance in price depending on when you go.
Peak tickets must be used on the following dates:
- March 11 – 31
- April 1 – 2
- May 27 – 31
- June 1 – 30
- July 1 – 23
- November 20 – 27
- December 22 – 31
Regular Tickets must be used on the following dates:
- March 4 – 10
- April 3 – 30
- May 1 – 26
- July 24 – 31
- August 1 – 21
- September 30
- October 1 – 31
- November 1 – 19, 28 – 30
- December 1 – 21
Value Tickets are good to be used on these dates:
- August 22 – 31
- September 1 – 29
Keep in mind that peak tickets can be used on all days of the year and regular tickets can be used on all value ticket days as well. I wouldn’t recommend doing that but just something to keep in mind.
As you can see from the dates that are assigned to each season, the bulk of the year falls into the regular season, with just 38 days assigned to value ticket days. The dates above also are just as of today, there is no word if Disney will shift seasons during this year or even change the seasons for 2017. Right now we’re only able to see out to December 31st right now, which is also when all 1-day tickets expire that are purchased this year.
Right now we’re only able to see out to December 31st right now, which is also when all 1-day tickets expire that are purchased this year.
Disney can easily shift around dates, move more into the peak season or move more into value but that’s very unlikely. Only time will tell how this new type of pricing will play out. As we can see from this new structure, it’s even more important to choose wisely the times of year you make the trip down to Orlando.
Keep in mind that most people vacationing will be purchasing multi-day tickets which are not subject to the seasonal pricing.
How to Save Money on Tickets?
While Disney continues to raise ticket prices on us, we do have a few ways to find the best deals and save the most on park tickets.
First and foremost, as I outlined in the 5 cheapest times to go to Disney World, you will want to chose the value seasons to take your trips. That means taking a trip during September or the end of August will save you the most money, followed by any of the regular season dates. I would highly recommend avoiding any of the peak dates unless absolutely necessary.
Sites like Undercover Tourist that sell discounted park tickets will continue to have better prices on tickets than through Disney. Always be sure to check with them first before making any purchases to ensure that you are getting the best price.
With the seasonal pricing, it makes much more sense to purchase multi-day tickets. You’ll pay a set price and can go on any day of the year, plus can get the flexibility of options like park hopping. I’ll cover the price hikes of multi-day tickets in a separate post, but for now, you should try to avoid buying single day tickets if possible.
Do you have questions about Disney’s new ticket pricing structure? Ask in the comments below!