In 2013, Disney raised ticket prices to get in the Disney World theme parks. Tickets can be one of the most costly purchases that you will make when planning your trip. Even if you are staying offsite in a cheap hotel, and eating sandwiches from Walmart for lunch, you will still pay a bundle for tickets. As such, today we are going to discuss the main ways that savvy Disney planners find cheap Disney World tickets, and investigate the pros and cons of each.
There are in reality five ways to buy tickets. First, you can buy them directly from Disney. Second, you can buy an annual pass in an attempt to save money. Third, you can use a discount ticket vendor. Fourth, you can buy the tickets on Ebay. Finally, some people have used Craigs List or other classified sites to buy tickets. Let’s analyze these five areas.
Buying from Disney
The first thing you need to know about buying directly from Disney is that you will never get a discount on the ticket prices themselves. However, this doesn’t mean this is necessarily a poor option. If you are staying onsite at a Disney resort and taking advantage of dining plans, you may have received discounts in other areas that make the purchasing of tickets at face-value the smart decision.
However, if you are staying offsite and are not on a Disney Dining plan, you would be wasting money to purchase the tickets at face value. Granted, it is not going to be a significant amount, but there are ways to save a bit of cash. Let’s investigate them.
Discount Ticket vendors
Disney works with a few ticket vendors to provide cheap Disney World tickets. But don’t expect massive savings, because you will be disappointed. The significant discounts come on park hopper tickets and longer stays. If you are just going for two or three days, you can check the prices, but you will likely only save a couple bucks.
However, if you are planning a longer trip to Disney World, I highly recommend using these vendors. They are 100% safe, and you will save money. Even if it’s only 40-100 bucks, that’s money you can use for dinner one night. It’s well worth it. But which vendor should you use?
We highly recommend two: Undercover Tourist and Best of Orlando. Both of these are extremely reputable and frequently used. They frequently run differing discounts, so it makes sense to check both sites out, and do comparisons. You may save a little bit of money by doing this.
However, are there ways to get even DEEPER discounts?
Some Disney shoppers use Ebay. If you are not experienced in Ebay, I’d use extreme caution. Make sure and check the star rating and see the reviews of the person you are considering the purchase of tickets from. Ebay is a huge site and it is possible to have a deal “slip through the cracks”. But it likely will take a lot of time researching it, and in all likelihood, you won’t find deals much better than you could get at Undercover Tourist.
Craigslist is very dangerous for purchasing tickets. It is POSSIBLE that you can find a reputable local person, just looking to get get rid of some last minute Disney tickets. It is possible that you could even find steep discounts up to 40% off. But it is also very easy to get scammed on Craigslist. I’d recommend only dealing with people in your general area, that you can meet in person. But even then, caution is highly recommended. If you use Craigslist frequently and are familiar with the site and how to avoid scams, then you may opt to try this. But if not, I’d highly recommend staying away. Just think about the risk. Is it worth losing 800 dollars to save 200? Be careful.
An annual pass is another possible way to save money. However, as you would imagine, it would only save you money if you plan on attending Disney a number of times in one 12-month period. For instance, if you go to Disney every year, you could potentially buy a Annual pass in October and then use it the following year in September. By doing that, you could use it for two vacations and save some money. How much money? Well again, this would depend on how often you go. Where you would really see the benefit is if you make 3 or more smaller vacations. Annual passes also come with other perks such as free parking, that can also make a difference. We recommend keeping this option in mind if you are planning multiple trips. However, it would not make sense for a one-time trip, as you’d be throwing money away.
Other ways to save money
As you have seen, there are a number of options that you can use to save money on tickets. Even so, don’t expect to see significant discounts. If you find tickets for 10% off, consider it a GREAT deal. By far, the best way to save money on a trip to Disney is by using other money saving tips on food, lodging, souvenirs and travel.
Let’s head to our article on Money Saving Tips to start really raking in the discounts!