Tickets to Disney World are expensive, and the prices only get higher each year. In fact, another price increase was recently announced, putting many Disney fans in a frenzy to buy tickets for their next vacation before the new prices go into effect. And to make things even harder for Disney-goers on a budget, there aren’t very many Disney ticket discounts out there at all, and the ones that do exist are pretty meager. In order to save money on tickets while still getting plenty of Disney World in their lives, many Disney fanatics turn to Annual Passes. Purchasing an Annual Pass may seem silly if you live out of state or even if you just don’t visit that often. However, if you plan to visit for more than ten days in a 12-month period, it is actually cheaper than buying regular tickets and comes along with tons of awesome perks.
1. More Disney Time
The first and most obvious benefit is more Disney time. Not only can you easily add days to any trip without adding any extra cost, you can also hop from park to park. Depending on your pass, you may also get into water parks, and even if water parks aren’t included, you will at least receive a discount on water park tickets. More Disney time is always a good thing, and definitely the very best thing about being a Passholder.
2. Free Parking at the Parks
Parking at Disney World isn’t cheap, and now that even those who are staying onsite must pay for parking, getting around those crazy fees is harder than ever. The best and easiest way to skip the parking fees is to buy an Annual Pass. Passholders never pay for parking at any Disney park, and this can be a huge money saver if you drive in often enough.
3. Merchandise Discounts
Another great money saver is the Passholder merchandise discount. People with an Annual Pass receive a 20% discount at the Disney World gift shops and 10% off in many Disney Springs shops. If you shop while in the parks, this is a major bonus. After all, we all know how pricey Disney merchandise is, meaning that 10%–20% really adds up.
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4. Dining Discounts
In addition to those merchandise discounts, Annual Passholders also receive 10% off at several Disney World eateries. This is awesome for saving a bit of cash during your vacation or even if you just visit for the day once in awhile. It certainly makes dining in the Disney restaurants a more feasible option for those on a budget.
5. Resort Deals
Often, Disney will release deals on their resorts that are Passholder-exclusive. This is just one more thing that will make your Disney trips more affordable, and it may even mean you can take two or three trips in a year when you would normally only take one.
6. Special Events
Once in a while there will be special Passholder-exclusive events held in the parks. New movie previews, new ride previews, and even new land previews have all been offered to Passholders. If you’re around for these events, they can be lots of fun and really sweeten the pot, making an Annual Pass even more tempting. Besides those in-park events, Passholders also receive discounts on certain on-property events and entertainment. This means you can save on shows, movie tickets, tours, and more.
7. MagicBand and Bling
A small but fun perk that all Passholders receive is a MagicBand. This is awesome because most people have to stay at a Disney resort to receive a MagicBand without purchasing one outright. Passholders get their choice of color, and each MagicBand comes with a Passholder charm so you can show off your status.
8. Passholder Gifts
Last but not least, we must mention the Passholder gifts offered at Epcot during their various festivals. A new magnet is offered during each festival, and these are perfect for displaying on your vehicle. Additionally, Disney has been known to offer a second gift. These have included such items as cutting boards, artwork, and tumblers. Obviously, these are small trinkets, but they are fun to have.