Ticket Prices Rise at Disney Theme Parks

Price increases affect parks in California and Florida and come as attendance levels rise for Disney's resorts biz.


The Happiest Place on Earth is getting a little more expensive to visit.

With summer vacation season heating up, Disney has increased ticket prices at its resorts in California and Florida.

Over the weekend, Disney upped the price of a one-day adult ticket at either Disneyland and Disney California Adventure by $5 to $92 and a kids ticket to $87, also up $5. One-day park hopper passes now cost $137, up from $125. Buyers of annual passes will also see a price increase, with Southern California residents no longer receiving discounts.

At Walt Disney World, adult admission to the Magic Kingdom — Disney’s most popular theme park around the world — rose $6 to $95, while those for kids age 3-9 is $89. Single-day tickets to Epcot, Hollywood Studios and Animal Kingdom costs $90 and $84, for adults and kids, respectively.

Disney said the increase was the result of “a variety of factors,” but still represented “a great value” given the attractions and entertainment offered at the parks.

The move comes several weeks after Universal Orlando Resort increased ticket prices for single day tickets by 3.4% to $92, the first time an Orlando-based theme park upped prices past $90. They had cost $89. A single-day park hopper rose 3.2% to $124 from $128.

Universal also boosted ticket prices last year to $88, thanks to the success of “The Wizarding World of Harry Potter” at its Islands of Adventure park. Universal is currently expanding the Harry Potter-themed park into Universal Studios Florida by building Diagon Alley and other locations from the franchise.

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Disney’s decision to increase prices comes as attendance and spending at its theme parks division is on the rise. Disney’s resorts biz has long been used as a barometer to gauge the health of the economy.

In the first quarter of the year, spending by visitors to Disney’s parks rose 10%. Average spending was up 7% last year, according to the company. Overall Disney’s theme parks and resorts group saw revenue and operating income grow more than any other division last year. Revenue rose 10% to $12.9 billion, while profits came in at $1.9 billion, up 22%.

Tourists flocked to Disney’s theme parks and resorts during this year’s Easter holiday and Spring break vacation season, helping revenue rise 14% to $3.3 billion for Disney’s second-largest unit, during the second quarter.

Attendance levels have evened out at Disney’s theme parks in California, after the company spent $1 billion to overhaul its California Adventure with new rides and attractions, including Cars Land. Iger revealed that before the revamp, 75% of guests visited Disneyland, while 25% crossed the plaza into California Adventure during a typical day. Now, it’s split their time 55% and 45% between the parks.