• Beth Pesakoff

Tickets 101: Which Disney Ticket is best for you?

Tickets 101: Which Disney Ticket is best for you?

By HM 2/20

There are four amusement parks at Walt Disney World Resort in Orlando. Two water parks. ESPN Wide World of Sports, a golf course and two miniature golf courses.

With all these options, it’s no wonder people regularly ask us: What ticket should we buy?

Unfortunately, there’s no ‘One ticket fits all’ scenario for Disney World.

But there is a method we can employ to narrow down the options. Let’s start with:


Walt Disney World breaks out tickets in to two categories:

Theme Park tickets and Special Event tickets.

Theme Park tickets are just what they sound like: basic admission to the parks. These tickets have upgrade options like Park Hopper and Park Hopper Plus. The Park Hopper will allow you to visit multiple parks in one day, while the Park Hopper Plus allows for travel between parks as well as admission to the water parks Typhoon Lagoon and Blizzard Beach.

Special Event tickets are for events like Disney After Hours, Villains After Hours, Mickey’s Not So Scary Halloween Party and Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party. There are dozens of unique, specially ticketed events each year and the cost to attend these events are in addition to your purchased basic admission ticket. These special events come with unique hours (which means less crowds!) and a lot of Disney Magic. So, it’s always best to check out what special events are available at the time of your planned stay.


How long are you planning to stay? Are there children in your party? First timers? What time of the year do you want to visit? Do you want to see all the parks? The water parks? Other amusement parks in Orlando?

In other words, you need to come up with a loose itinerary.

Next… let’s talk DURATION

How long you’re staying may be just as important as when you’re going. Consider your travel days: are you arriving early/leaving late? Then you may or may not want to include those days as ticket days. Do you want to hit the parks every day of your trip? Or do you want to visit some other amusement parks like Sea World or Universal Studios? Further, since Special Event tickets are unique unto themselves, so we may want to plan your theme park days around these special events.


I love a Park Hopper ticket! It’s great to be able to start the day at Magic Kingdom and finish at Epcot with a good dinner. Or if you’re wanting to catch a standby line at a popular ride late in the day (when lines usually start to get thin) you can hop over to that park before it closes. However, Park Hopper tickets cost more. If you’re budget conscious, the Hopper upgrade may not be worth it. Hopper costs vary depending on how many days you’re buying and which option you choose.

Finally, while travelling from park to park in one day sounds great and is convenient, you have to allow for travel time. It can take anywhere from twenty minutes to an hour to travel between parks and this could cut into time where you could be having some fun instead of riding a bus to Animal Kingdom.

This is just scratching the surface of ticketing options. If you’re visiting Disneyland or are a Florida resident, well… that opens up a whole slew of other doors.

Visiting Disney will be one of the most Magical vacations you ever take… and while it does require some planning and thought on the front end, once you arrive, you’ll be able to sit back, enjoy your family and have some fun!

If you have any questions about this post or want some help planning your Disney vacation, I’d love to talk to you! Drop me a line at

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