Our 2020 park ticket buying guide covers how to save money on Walt Disney World, Disneyland, and other worldwide destinations. Whether you want the best deals or time-saving add-ons, we have you covered with info & infos for Florida, California, Paris, Tokyo, Shanghai, and Hong Kong–every park in the world! (Updated February 16, 2020.)
The first thing you need to know is that both Walt Disney World and Disneyland raised ticket prices in mid-February 2020. This impacts a variety of park tickets, with some tickets not increasing at all and others jumping by $20 or more (in the case of Annual Passes). The good news here is that Get Away Today, our recommended third party ticket seller, still has tickets at the “old” prices through February 20, 2020–you can save up to $78 per ticket!
If you’re traveling between now and December 31, 2020 we’d highly recommend purchasing tickets ASAP to get the old pricing. Additionally, buying park tickets today locks in the current pricing and guards against the next price increase, which could come as soon as October 2020. In this post, we cover other ways to score legitimate discounts on Disney Parks tickets…
We cannot stress the “legitimate” part of the above enough. There’s a plague of fake and unauthorized tickets being sold for the parks. Roadside stands, eBay, Craigslist, shady websites, etc–there are many Disney ticket scams to which budget-conscious guests fall prey. Worse yet, if you innocently purchase invalid tickets from a scam, you’re going to pay twice, because Disney isn’t going to accept the fake tickets.
Suffice to say, if a ticket deal seems too good to be true, it probably is. While it is possible to save money on Disney tickets, most savings are of around $5 to $50 per ticket, with the biggest savings being on multi-day tickets for 5 days or more. (Sometimes, 10-day tickets are discounted by $75 or more.) However, you will never find legitimate, half-price tickets.
Tickets are often one of–if not the–most expensive aspects of any Disney vacation, so we understand the desire to save as much money as possible. However, you have to be smart about it. Spending money on a shady but “great deal” that turns out to be a scam will cost you more in the long run. Our Disney ticket tips & tricks cover only the best, legitimate ways to save money on Disney tickets, and authorized sellers from which to buy those tickets.
Let’s start with Walt Disney World tickets…
Walt Disney World
Walt Disney World has myriad ticket choices that enable you to buy exactly what you need and nothing more or less. It’s a complicated, date-based system that can be difficult for a first-time Walt Disney World guest. Disney representatives often only make matters worse, as they upsell or subtly “encourage” guests into buying the more expensive tickets.
This is because Walt Disney World just increased prices on multi-day base tickets, Park Hopper tickets, and Annual Passes in February 2020. Basically, everything except single day tickets. You can read the full list of changes in our Walt Disney World 2020 Ticket & AP Price Increases post. Last year, price increases occurred in multiple waves, and it’s now easier for Disney to obfuscate this with the date-based system that can conceal upticks in pricing.
You can order tickets for use now through December 31, 2020, and you will receive confirmation codes via email for My Disney Experience (so you can make FastPass+ selections). In our Tips for Saving Money on Walt Disney World Tickets post, we discuss which add-ons you should and should not get, how many days you might want tickets, and also compare prices among the four reputable Orlando discount ticket brokers.
Simply knowing about the different options so you don’t purchase unnecessary add-ons and buying from the discount sellers with the best price on particular tickets can save you a lot of money, and significantly cut down on the cost of your park tickets. It’s pretty easy to do, especially since many guests (especially those families with small children) don’t truly need Park Hopper or other add-ons.
Disneyland Resort park tickets are more straight-forward, since there aren’t water parks and only two parks–Disney California Adventure and Disneyland. Here, it’s basically a question of whether or not to get the Park Hopper option, and how many days to stay in the first place.
AAA, Safeway, Costco, and a handful of other SoCal retailers have small discounts of a couple dollars per ticket in store from time to time, but those savings are usually smaller. Additionally, there is a Southern California resident special on tickets that typically runs every mid-January through mid-May. If you’re not a local (with ID to prove it), your best option is purchasing online via authorized discounted sellers.
The best deals for buying Disneyland tickets safely and securely via Get Away Today, which is an authorized sellers of Disneyland tickets with the best prices and customer service that we’ve found. They have tickets that are valid for admission from now until December 31, 2020. If you already know how many days worth of tickets you need and are looking for the best price, that’s all you need to know.
As with Walt Disney World, 2020 ticket prices for Disney California Adventure and Disneyland have risen on 1-day, multi-day, and Annual Passes. Beyond the price increases, Disneyland Resort has expanded the tiered tickets from Value, Regular, and Peak seasons to 5 unnamed tiers. We cover all of the details here.
The good news here is that Get Away Today, our recommended third party ticket seller, still has tickets at the “old” prices through February 20, 2020. By purchasing your Disneyland park tickets between now and then, you can save up to $75 per ticket!
No matter where you purchase your tickets, you can add-on the new MaxPass digital FastPass service. As we share in our Disneyland FastPass & MaxPass Tips post, this can be a time-saving purchase, especially during more crowded days. While we don’t like paying for FastPass in principle, this can enable you to do 3-4 additional headliner attractions per day.
If you need more assistance with determining how many days to buy tickets, if you should get the Park Hopper option, and whether an Annual Pass might actually make sense, check out our Tips for Saving Money on Disneyland Ticketspost.
Both Disneyland Paris and Hong Kong Disneyland are unique in that if you plan to spend as few as 3 days in either, you might be better off just buying an Annual Pass. Disneyland Paris just released a new range of Annual Passes last year, with the new tiers being the Discovery, Magic Flex, Magic Plus, and Infinity Annual Passes. These APs vary in price considerably based upon blockout dates, discounts, and other perks that each tier offers.
As far as regular park tickets go, Disneyland Paris has adopted surge pricing, meaning that single day ticket prices vary based upon anticipated attendance. This makes things a bit more complex, since there are three tiers of normal single day tickets now: Mini, Magic, and Super Magic.
Note that only the single day tickets are subject to the tiered pricing. If you purchase a multi-day ticket, the tiers are irrelevant. However, even if you are going for multiple days, you should look at the tiered pricing calendar, as 2 Mini tickets (if you’re going during a slow season) is actually a cheaper option than one 2-day ticket. Zut alores, très compliqué!
For multi-day tickets, there are also some money-saving options available, particularly for Europeans. Americans might have a more difficult time scoring deals, but we cover all the ways to save in our Disneyland Paris Park Ticket Tips & Infopost.
Tokyo Disney Resort
Your options are pretty limited when it comes to tickets for Tokyo Disneyland and DisneySea, but the good news is that park tickets there are significantly cheaper than for the US Disney Parks. The Japanese parks most definitely are locals’ parks, so the pricing strategy there is to charge a premium for Annual Passes and less for one to four day tickets.
Not only are the single and multi-day ticket prices lower, but for Americans, the dollar-to-yen exchange rate is excellent right now, making park tickets for us a relative steal. Of course, you still have to pay for airfare to get there in the first place. Read our Money-Saving Tips for Tokyo Disneyland Park Ticketspost for our full recommendations on buying the best tickets–and at the best prices–for Tokyo Disneyland and Tokyo DisneySea!
To save money, we recommend purchasing tickets in advance from Klook. Disney Tourist Blog readers can take $5 off their first booking on Klook by entering our exclusive discount code KLKDTB at checkout. (Note: these tickets are not always available–if you see a ‘404 currently unavailable’ message when you attempt to purchase tickets, you’ll have to buy them directly from Tokyo Disney Resort.)
Hong Kong Disneyland
Hong Kong Disneyland has by far the easiest ticket system. There are 1-day and 2-day park tickets (no Park Hopper since there’s only one park), and three tiers of Annual Passes: Silver (valid for 250 days per year), Gold (valid for 340 days per year), and Platinum (valid for 365 days per year). Each of these passes also offers discounts on food, merchandise, and hotels. The break even point on the Silver is 3 days, with the other passes having varying break even points of ~6-10 days based upon whether you’d buy 1 or 2 day tickets.
The good news is that park tickets for Shanghai Disneyland are inexpensive as compared to the US parks, especially during their low seasons (they also have surge pricing); the bad news is that prices have already increased and upcharges have been introduced since Shanghai Disneyland opened two years ago.
Fortunately, there are now discounted 1-2 day tickets available via Klook. Depending upon the ticket season, you’re looking at a savings of around $5-10 per ticket (or more if you use our KLKDTB coupon). Not huge savings, but considering that tickets are in the $65-75 range, that’s not bad–and it all adds up.
Regardless of how you purchase your Shanghai Disneyland park tickets, we recommend getting digital tickets. Once you have them, take a screenshot of the ticket (for safety in case the internet is down) as well. Make sure to bring your passport in case the Cast Member requests to check your ID (you should always have your passport on your person when traveling internationally).
Shanghai Disneyland also offers “Disney Premier Access” which is a paid, digital FastPass service for its most popular attractions. If you only have 1-day in Shanghai Disneyland and don’t arrive at rope drop, this can be a good, time-saving purchase. If you do rope drop, stay late, or have multiple days in the park, we view this as unnecessary.
Planning a visit to one of the Disney theme parks? Check out our Disney Parks Trip Planning Guides for everything you need to start planning a trip to Walt Disney World, Disneyland Resort, Disneyland Paris, Tokyo Disney Resort, Hong Kong Disneyland, and Aulani in Hawaii.
As for tickets, what are your preferred type of tickets to get? Do you purchase optional add-ons, like Park Hopper or MaxPass? Do you have an Annual Pass? Any tips or tricks of your own to add? Any questions? Hearing feedback about your experiences is both interesting to us and helpful to other readers, so please share your thoughts below in the comments!