Last Updated on September 15, 2023 by Heather
URGENT UPDATE – MOST DISNEY WORLD ANNUAL PASS SALES HAVE BEEN HALTED
Sales of annual passes for every pass except the Pixie Dust annual pass (available only to residents of Florida) have been paused as of November 22, 2021. When they resume, we will remove this update, but you can also view the current list of available passes here.
Those of us who are some of the biggest Walt Disney World fans are also Walt Disney World Annual Passholders. Buying Walt Disney World Annual passes is a decision that every big Walt Disney World fan will be faced with at some point. But if you travel to the most magical place on earth frequently enough, they are almost a must-have.
It’s no surprise that Walt Disney World resort is making some updates and changes to their annual passholders program due to the events of 2020 – present. We have seen a complete stop on new annual passes in 2020, and then saw them brought back to life in September of 2021.
Walt Disney World AP Levels
Now before we get into the actual tips included in this post, I thought it best to give you a quick rundown of all the different passes available. If you live in Florida or you’re a DVC member there’s a lot to choose from but let’s start with the Walt Disney World Annual pass for those who live outside of the Sunshine State and are not a DVC member. So if you are wondering how much a Walt Disney AP costs then keep reading.
This pass is for anyone whether you are a Florida resident or not. If you do not live in Florida or are a DVC member, this is the only pass that you can choose from.
This pass offers an unlimited number of visits to all four theme parks throughout the entire year and you can hop between parks on any given day like hopper annual passes. Also, there are no blackout dates. You can hold up to 5 park reservations with this pass.
Disney Sorcerer Pass
This level is only for Floridians or DVC members. you also have the option to get the Gold annual pass. Like the previous pass, this gives you an unlimited number of visits to the theme parks and the ability to park hop.
However, there are some blackout dates but they are only a few days around Thanksgiving and two weeks at Christmas. Honestly, the blockout dates for this pass are not that bad being that those are some of the busiest days of the year at Walt Disney World Resort. You can hold up to 5 park reservations with this pass.
The blockout dates are:
Disney Pirate Pass
The next choice is for Florida Residents ONLY. This pass comes with more blockout dates. With this pass you will not be able to visit the theme parks on these dates:
January 1st & 14th-16th
Depending on your family this pass might make sense if these dates are not when you would typically visit. You can hold up to 4 park reservations with this pass.
Disney Pixie Dust Pass
This lower tier pass is the least expensive, for Florida residents ONLY and has the most blockout dates. You can hold up to 3 park reservations with this pass. The dates listed below are in addition to EVERY Saturday and Sunday. The blockout dates for this pass are as follows:
All Weekends (Saturday/Sunday)
All Weekends (Saturday/Sunday)
*** All of these dates for each annual pass are only thru November 2023 and could change without notice.
Add On’s For Annual Passes
Now let’s talk about add-ons. Previously you could only choose from the passes that Walt Disney World had available and you had to be OK with the features that were included. New in 2021 you could choose the pass that works for you and then add on up to 2 optional packages. This means that annual passholders do not have to buy the most expensive pass in order to get these add-ons for your pass. You can really make your pass fit for you and how you want to experience the parks.
Disney PhotoPass add-on
I know what you are going to say… this used to be included with all Annual Passes … I know, and I get it… but this is what we have available to us. For $99 plus tax for the year you can have unlimited Disney PhotoPass downloads. This service is great for families because everyone can get into the pictures. The one positive of having this as an add-on is for those guests who do not utilize this service, they no longer have to have it as part of their pass. If you purchase all of your annual passes at the sane time, it will add this to each pass, my suggestion is to buy one of your annual passes separately and add it on to that one pass so you aren’t paying for it on every pass. For instance, I have the PhotoPass only pass but my children and husband do not.
Disney Water Park and Sports Option
For $99 plus tax for the year you can choose to visit the Water Parks, golf courses, and other sports experiences.
You can choose one admission, without blockout dates, from:
- Disney’s Blizzard Beach Water Park
- Disney’s Typhoon Lagoon Water Park – Currently Unavailable
- Disney’s Oak Trail Golf Course
- FootGolf at Disney’s Oak Trail
- Disney’s Fantasia Gardens Miniature Golf Course (one round prior to 4:00 PM)
- Disney’s Winter Summerland Miniature Golf Course (one round prior to 4:00 PM)
- ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex – Currently Unavailable
In the wording on Disney Parks Blog, it was a bit confusing as to how often you could visit. It made it sound like it was only a one-time issue.
After talking to an awesome cast member it was clarified that you can in fact visit 1 per day. Meaning you could visit Blizzard Beach on Monday and Oak Trail on Tuesday, as many times throughout the year.
Annual Passholders Ticket Prices
Current Prices are as follows as of November 28, 2022:
Disney Incredi-Pass $1399 plus tax
Disney Sorcerer Pass $969 plus tax
Disney Pirate Pass $749 plus tax
Disney Pixie Dust Pass $399 plus tax
Because these prices go up annually, you can find the current annual passholder ticket prices here. Whatever pass you’re considering, make sure you compare it to a regular multi-day ticket to figure out the value of the pass. Knowing your schedule first won’t quickly tell you how many days realistically you’ll get to visit the resort. In some cases paying the price of an annual pass may feel like a good investment to have some freedom but if you don’t really get to use it to its max you’ll be disappointed in spending the extra money.
Let’s use the Disney Incredi-Pass as an example, this one is now currently priced at $1,399. A five-day ticket with park hopper is currently priced at around $683 per adult depending on the time of year.
A ten-day park hopper is at $802, therefore, you have to be visiting at least 18 days out of the year to really make that pass economical. If you live in other parts of the US and you have to fly you’re going to have to be throwing down some serious cash to be going to Walt Disney World so often.
Compare To Ticket Promos
This really only applies to Florida residents. Make sure you compare the price of annual passes to the various ticket promos. Walt Disney World resort almost always has a three or four-day ticket offer for locals.
Now Florida residents don’t get discounts on multi-day tickets that are over four days so if you were considering that 10-day park hopper ticket you’ll have to pay the same price as everyone else.
What Are The Annual Passholders Discounts?
All Annual Passholders get discounts on dining and shopping. It’s a decent selling point from Disney but if you’re only upping a ten-day ticket to an annual pass to save on food and souvenirs do your homework. Walt Disney World resort states that you can get up to 20% off at select restaurants but this really only applies to all of the different Joffrey’s coffee locations. You do however get the 20% off merchandise at the majority of locations on property.
In reality, you really only get a 10% -15% discount at select table service restaurants. If you’re not one to splurge on the dining plan or table service restaurants and you like to stick to those quick service locations you won’t get much use out of this benefit.
There used to be a membership club called Tables In Wonderland that offered better discounts for dining. Unfortunately, it did not return after Covid.
Can I Pay For My Annual Pass Monthly?
This is a no-brainer if you are a Florida resident. Currently, only Florida residents can do this, but you should go for the monthly payments option.
Almost all of the annual passes give you the option to either pay the full amount upfront or pay in monthly installments after a deposit. There’s no interest on the payments, so you’re still paying the same price just in smaller dosages. I personally find the price a little easier to fit into a budget.
Disney Incredi-Pass After $205 deposit, just $99 per month
Disney Sorcerer Pass After $205 deposit, just $64 per month
Disney Pirate Pass After $205 deposit, just $45 per month
Disney Pixie Dust Pass After $205 deposit, just $19 per month
So there is everything you need to know when purchasing a Disney World annual pass. I know that a lot of you feel that the price increases have become a little too much to handle and I completely respect that.
For those of you still crunching the numbers and trying to make it work, I hope that this helps you navigate through all of the options and gives you a good head start on that number-crunching. Stick to these tips in this order and I promise you’ll be able to work out what passes best for you and your family.