Should You Purchase A Disney World Annual Pass?

| April 24, 2019 | 8 Comments

Should You Purchase A Disney World Annual Pass?

Last year, when I was planning a family visit to Walt Disney World for January 2019, it didn’t even occur to me to purchase a Disney World Annual Platinum Pass for myself versus a Disney World daily park ticket. In my mind, I thought the price must be so high that’s it’s not worth it, especially if we are only going to visit only once a year for a week.

Should You Purchase A Disney World Annual Pass?
My family in front of Cinderella’s Castle at the Magic Kingdom

It’s only after arriving at Disney that I noticed on the Disney Experience App that I could upgrade to an Annual Platinum Pass. I was tempted to see what it was all about, and I am so glad I did! Not only could I receive a credit for the daily park tickets I had previously purchased, I was getting so much more in benefits from a Disney World Annual Platinum Pass!

Let me break it down to you!

Disney Platinum Plus Pass ( for non-Florida residents and no blackout dates)

Should You Purchase A Disney World Annual Pass?
Disney Annual Platinum Plus Pass Benefits
  • Admission for a year to all 4 theme parks, 2 Disney water parks, ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex, and Disney’s Oak Trail Golf Course (No blockout dates)
  • Visit all 4 theme parks on the same day
  • Includes Disney PhotoPass downloads
  • Up to 20% off on select dining
  • Up to 20% off select merchandise in store or online at Shop Disney Parks
  • $25 US/day Standard daily theme park parking

Price: Ages 3+ $994.00 US

Disney Platinum Pass ( for non-Florida residents and no blackout dates)

Should You Purchase A Disney World Annual Pass?
Disney Platinum Annual Pass benefits
  • Admission for a year to all 4 theme parks (No blockout dates)
  • Visit all 4 theme parks on the same day
  • Includes Disney PhotoPass downloads ( Memory Maker)*
  • Up to 20% off on select dining
  • Up to 20% off select merchandise in store or online at Shop Disney Parks
  • $25 US Standard Daily theme park parking

Price: Ages 3+ $894.00 US

Compare

The differences between the two are you get to visit 2 Disney water parks, ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex, and Disney’s Oak Trail Golf Course for $100 US more with a Disney Platinum Plus Pass (for non-Florida residents).

The daily ticket fees

When we purchased our tickets, Disney was offering a Canadian residents special pricing, (Canadian resident tickets expire 14 days after first use or by September 27, 2019, whichever comes first) and tickets had to be purchased between August 29, 2018 and March 15, 2019. At the present time, there is no special discounted ticket offers to Canadian residents.

Should You Purchase A Disney World Annual Pass?
6 Day Disney World Park Ticket fees

1 Park Per Day Ticket

CAN Res. Special discount: 6-Day Ticket with Admission to 1 Park Per Day age 10+=$359.97USD

At the present time, regular daily price tickets for 6 days will vary per day from $72 US to $81 US depending on the day versus the $59 US that I paid. You are talking roughly about $100 US more for 6 days than with the Canadian special discount offer.

Enjoy admission to one theme park per day for each day of your ticket. You can pick a different park each day. 

Should You Purchase A Disney World Annual Pass?
6 day Disney Park Hopper Ticket fees

Park Hopper Ticket

CAN Res. Special discount: 6-Day Ticket with Park Hopper Option age 10+=$430.26USD

At the present time, regular park hopper tickets for 6 days will vary per day from $86 US to $94 US depending on the day versus the $71 US that was available to Canadians. You are talking roughly about $100 US more for 6 days than with the Canadian special discount offer.

With the Park Hopper option, you can visit multiple theme parks on the same day for each day of your ticket.

Should You Purchase A Disney World Annual Pass?
Disney World Memory Maker

Disney Memory Maker included with an annual pass

You access and download Disney PhotoPass photos captured in your account from the first valid date of your pass until your pass expires. Plus, access and downloading is available after pass expiration for as long as the photo is stored in the system (365 days from date of capture). Entitlement also includes discounted prices on prints and physical product purchases. If you are wearing your MagicBand, it automatically links attraction photos and videos to your Disney account. 

Disney Memory Maker Purchased

The Disney Memory MakerAdvance Purchase price is $169 US and any photos taken within 3 days of the date Memory Maker is purchased are not included and must be purchased separately. The Memory Maker – Starts Immediately is $199 US. You must download all your PhotoPass photos and videos before they expire (45 days from the date they’re taken). Once they expire, they can no longer be purchased or downloaded. If you are wearing your MagicBand, it automatically links attraction photos and videos to your Disney account. 

Photos include:   

Disney PhotoPass Photographers

Disney PhotoPass Photographers are available at iconic locations throughout Walt Disney World Resort to capture all of your magical moments. They are in front and to the side of the Cinderella Castle, in front of Spaceship Earth at Epcot, taking photos of you hugging your favourite Disney Character, and so much more. 

Should You Purchase A Disney World Annual Pass?
Magic Kingdom Cinderella Castle during Christmas

Treasure Shots

Treasure shots are a photo taking of your family plummeting down Splash Mountain or a slow-motion video as you zoom around a corner on Seven Dwarfs Mine Train.

Magic Shots

Magic Shots add Disney Characters such as Tinker Bell and other fun surprises to your photos after they’re taken.

Disney PhotoPass Magic Shot

Dining Photos

They will take your photos at select restaurants and dining experiences, before or after your meal as you get to enjoy your favourite Disney Characters.

Disney PhotoPass Service Studio

You can capture magical portraits with standard or virtual backdrops at the Disney Springs location.

Discover Exciting Passholder Discounts

Don’t Miss These Special Events and Passholder Extras

Should You Purchase A Disney World Annual Pass?
Disney Mickey Mouse Waffles

Disney Dining Plans

There are 3 dining plans available: the Quick Service Disney Dining Plan, the Disney Dining Plan, and the Deluxe Disney Dining Plan. When I booked our room at the Disney Resort, no Free Dining plans were available during this time. After looking at the dining plan options versus my choices of restaurants, meals, snacks, beverages, and drinks, I decided to purchase my own food versus getting a paid plan.

Should You Purchase A Disney World Annual Pass?
Cast Member, Nicole, at Be Our Guest restaurant at Disney.

Let’s do the Math

Now, let’s do the math and see how much it cost for myself to visit Walt Disney World for 6 days:

Without a Disney Annual Pass (with special Canadian Ticket offer)

  • CAN Res. 6-Day Ticket with Park Hopper Option age 10+=$430.26USD
  • Memory Maker= 169 US/valid for 1 trip only
  • Food at all parks: $100 US/day X 6 days=$600 US
  • Merchandise: 500 US 
  • Parking: $25 US/6 days: $150 US
  • Total cost: $1849.26 US

With a Disney Platinum Pass

  • Cost: $894.00 US ( Park Hopper )
  • Memory Maker included for the year
  • Parking Included 
  • Food at all parks: $100 US/day ($70 US applicable X 6 days=$420 X 10% discount) =$378 US + ($100 US- $70 US =$30 US X 6 days) =$558 US
  • Merchandise: 500 US X 15% discount (some were 10% others $20 %, average was 15%) = $425 US
  • Total cost: $1877 US

Should You Purchase A Disney World Annual Pass?

Should You Purchase A Disney World Annual Pass?
Should You Purchase A Disney World Annual Pass?

From what you can see, it would cost me more to purchase the Disney Annual Platinum Pass with the amount that I spent at the Parks. I was lucky enough to get the discounted Canadian day/park hopper ticket rate on this trip. At this time, with no Canadian discount on the daily park ticket rates, it would cost me about an extra $100 in Day tickets for 6 days to make my total purchases to roughly $1949.26 US versus $1877 US with the Annual Platinum Pass.

Should You Purchase A Disney World Annual Pass?
Hollywood Studios Toy Story Land

When I called Walt Disney World customer service to discuss the benefits of having an Platinum Annual Pass, she mentioned that all of my family members with me also benefit from the Passholder % off discount for dining, entertainment, and merchandise purchased at Walt Disney World. As long as I was present for the purchases and the meals, the discount applied to the bill. It is on select merchandise stores and dining locations, but there are lots to choose from. I only need to purchase 1 Disney Annual Platinum Pass to get the discount applied!

Hollywood Stutios Toy Story Land
Walt Disney World Passholder logo

Yes, I ended up purchasing the Disney Platinum Pass for myself! I saved an extra $127 US in food and $168 US in merchandise from the purchased that I made for my other family members. Based on my family’s spending habits on this trip, it was more economical as we saved money in the long run.

There are also added perks for being a Passholder such as:

Therefore, it can add up to more savings!

My daughter and I are visiting Walt Disney World again in October as we are attending Flock Presents Conference! The Disney Annual Platinum Pass will now save me even more money on food, merchandise, and tickets to Mickey Not So Scary Halloween Party! To view the complete Passholder Perks Guide, click here!

Do your own math to see if it’s worth it for you!

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Category: Attractions, Disney, Living, Tips, Travel, USA

About the Author ()

Lyne is a Certified Infant Massage Instructor (CIMI), Certified Professional Wedding Consultant, and an Event Planner. It has always been her dream to create a website dedicated just for Moms since her children were young. Thus, after 10 years, she finally accomplished it, and the Ottawa Mommy Club was born in May 2011. She loves all things Disney and is an avid chocoholic. She was also the Queen B of the BConnected Conference, Canada's Digital Influencer and social media Conference in Ottawa and Toronto. She coordinated the Annual Infant Information Day/Early Years Expo for the City of Ottawa for 8 years. She was also the co-chair of the Navan for Kraft Hockeyville 2009-2011 committee that organized five community events within 6 months, and helped Navan reach the top 10 finalists in Canada. In April 2011, she received the City of Ottawa Mayor's City Builder Award.

Comments (8)

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  1. I would definitely get a pass if I lived closer and went all the time.

  2. Erin N says:

    I love Disney! It would be amazing to have an annual pass.

  3. micheline says:

    I think it’s a great idea if you go multiple times in a year, or you’re there for an extended time period.

  4. I have always wanted to do the math to see if purchasing an annual pass was worth it so this is a great post Lyne! There always seem to be little perks for passholders that pop up during the year so I bet you can really save even more. And I love to buy Disney merch so that benefit is great. I am going to have to revisit what my family does before our next trip.

    • Lyne says:

      Yes, the perks are definitely worth looking into. If you eat at the restaurants and buy merchandise at stores that offer % off, it’s a good idea to calculate to see if the savings make sense for you to purchase an annual pass.

  5. Calvin says:

    I don’t nearly go enough.. in fact I haven’t visited the one in america before.. Sounds cool though, would motivate people to go more as well

  6. Elizabeth Matthiesen says:

    Wow, I always assumed it would be a lot more expensive than paying the day rate.

  7. Debbie White-Beattie says:

    If you go to Florida often then it’s definitely worth the money especially with the other discounts

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