It's that time of year again, time to look at the annual price increases for your favorite Disney parks. We took a look at last years article about the price increases, and wouldn't you know, it happened the same weekend last year.
This year however, there seems to be a few changes to the Disneyland Annual Pass program that may or may not help the parking situation (we think it's going to actually help).
As always, it's important to remember, the biggest change is going to be to your 1-day 1-park prices, because that is what everybody is going to focus on. Us, we're happy to give you the whole story and show you a few ways that you can save a few bucks (especially when it comes to WDW). Because while the 1-day price is a lot (and it is) the fact is, WDW is a "Resort".
Where these price increases really hurt is the family that makes a 1-day trip to either resort once a year. Gone are the days of a family being able to wake up and say "Hey, let's go to Disney(land/world) for the day" and have it be spontaneous.
It seems that Disneyland is quite happy to keep their AP numbers high and WDW just wants vacationers.
Disneyland Ticket Prices:
So let's take a closer look at those numbers, we'll start off with Disneyland
Park-Hopper Upgrade = $40 per ticket
If you have the Payment Plan for your Disneyland AP, the difference in cost per month when you renew:
And that's how they are going to keep the AP numbers high.
Annual Passholder Parking:
One other tidbit, and this is actually the biggest news coming out of these announcements, Parking will ONLY be included with the Premier/Premium pass from now on. If you have the Deluxe, SoCal or SoCal Select, you will no longer be able to add parking to your pass.
What does this mean? Everybody pays $17. What this ACTUALLY means? People are going to park at DtD and spend their 3 hours in the park and leave.
If Disney REALLY wants to fix the parking situation, they need to drop the free DtD parking from 3 to 2 hours and require a purchase of more than $15 to get free parking for 3 hours. And the purchase MUST be in DtD.
Other Southern California Annual Pass options:
While we know that not everybody ventures outside of Disneyland (yes, there are people who won't go to any other parks) for those of you looking for some other theme park options in Southern California, we've got you covered. And you may actually be surprised at the results below.
Just a reminder when looking at these numbers, a Premium Disneyland Pass is $779. So we'll be comparing similar passes at other parks (that have no blackout days, etc). Click the links below to compare the prices we've laid out and the lower-tier ones as well.
So for $761.99 you get access to 5 theme parks, at least 1 waterpark, Sea Life Aquarium, free parking at all but Six Flags and Knott's. While again, yes, some will argue the "quality vs quantity" thing, for most people this would be a great alternative for your family. It includes thrill parks (Six Flags), family parks, great rides for the kids, animal encounters and much more. And obviously if you look at other lower tier passes the the price will be even lower.
Also, of note, all passes above with the exception of Universal Studios Hollywood offer payment options.
We certainly aren't endorsing one or the other, just giving you options. =)
Walt Disney World Ticket Prices:
Ok, so lets take a closer look at these numbers. Disney knows that if a family has only 1 day to spend at WDW and they have small children, chances are they are spending it at the Magic Kingdom. Which is why that park costs more than the rest. It makes sense.
And yes, while there's the option for Park Hopping, Waterparks and Waterparks with Park Hopping how many people are REALLY going to try and do all that in 1 day? Even park hopping for most people if they only have 1 day is likely out of the question. Only us crazy people try to hit all 4 parks in one day.
Let's look at multiple day tickets below the awesome castle picture. =)
Walt Disney World Annual Passes
Walt Disney World Vacation
So last year we also took a look at the way most people book their WDW vacation, including hotel and park tickets. Because really, that's the way WDW wants you to book it and it really minimizes the "1-day theme park price" that everybody is talking about.
The Reservation system at WDW has been down for the last 3 days, we're guessing they are still updating with the pricing structure. We will update with this information and different hotel options when they are available.
Just 2 1/2 years after CarsLand opened, the area is seeing it's first ride close. The re-make of the classic Flying Saucers, Luigi's Flying Tires is set to close this Sunday (February 16) and a new attraction will be built in it's place.
While I personally enjoyed the ride you can see why it would be closing. Very low capacity, low ridership and a steep learning curve for general park visitors all contributed to it's ultimate demise.
Unfortunately this means that an attraction that cost close to $100 million is now going to cost additional millions to replace. While it was the hope of the Imagineers and namely, John Lasseter to bring the Flying Saucers back, in hindsight one has to wonder if they'd make the same decision.
Below we'll take a look at the ride and what is coming next.
Click on any of the pictures below to see a larger version.
When you have to have detailed directions for riding in your queue line you have a problem.
So what's next?
The artwork below is what is going to be replacing the ride. According to what we've heard, this is going to be similar to Aquatopia at Tokyo Disney Sea but obviously cars instead of boats.
Hopefully along with the trackless ride system coming to the US we'll get some great nighttime light packages like Aquatopia has.
So what do you think? Are you excited for something new in this spot? Did you enjoy Luigi's at all?
Let us know in the comments below.