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This year's Walt Disney World ticket price hikes come earlier than usual

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Perhaps in an attempt to grab a little extra income at the expense of the large summer crowds, Walt Disney World (and Disneyland) announced a ticket price hike Friday, June 10, effective on Sunday, June 12. For years, price hikes for Walt Disney World were announced in January; in 2006, with a second price hike in that calendar year, price hikes moved to the first Sunday in August. Last year, it was pushed back one week. This year, the date was moved up eight weeks, providing a last-minute price jolt to those summer visitors who had not already bought their tickets. It appears, though, that the strategy of announcing at the end of the day, effective two days later, is still apparently the preferred method of implementing the increase.

One-day, one-park tickets are up $3 for adults, t $85, and up $5 for children, to $79 (last year, the increase was $3 for adults, $6 for children). The Park Hopper and Water Park Fun & More options have both risen $1 to $55 (vs. $1 last year). Adult 10-day base tickets are up $29 to $291 (vs. $19 last year), with unexpiring 10-day tickets with both Park Hopper and Water Park Fun & More options jumping $43 to $626 (vs. $27 last year). 10-day base tickets for children are up $33 to $272 (vs. 29 last year), with their tricked-out price with all options leaping $47 to $607 (vs. $37 last year). The only price drop is in the cost of adding the Park Hopper option to a one-day pass, which drops to $35. Please note that all ticket prices in this story do not reflect the additional 6.5 percent sales tax.

Mid-year ticket price hikes provide a double boost: It provides a nice last-minute boost to the fiscal fourth-quarter earnings, and in this case a couple of weeks of third-quarter earnings (Disney's fiscal year ends at the end of September), and it puts the new prices out there in time for the publication cycle for guide books and for the start of booking for the following year's packages. With the new prices in effect, look for Disney Dining Plan prices to be locked in and resort prices to be set soon so that booking can be opened for all 2012 travel packages a little early this year.

If you'd like to compare the prices below to last year's prices, you can do that here.




























Schedule of Magic Your Way Ticket Prices
(prices shown do not include 6.5 percent sales tax)
Base Ticket Price (Adult/Child)
1 day2 day3 day4 day5 day
85/79168/155232/214243/224251/232
6 day7 day8 day9 day10 day
259/240267/248275/256283/264291/272
Base Ticket with Park Hopper Option
1 day2 day3 day4 day5 day
120/114223/210287/269298/279306/287
6 day7 day8 day9 day10 day
314/295322/303330/311338/319346/327
Base Ticket with Water Park Fun & More Option
1 day2 day3 day4 day5 day
140/134223/210287/269298/279306/287
+2+2+3+4+5
6 day7 day8 day9 day10 day
314/295322/303330/311338/319346/327
+6+7+8+9+10
Base Ticket with Park Hopper and Water Park Options
1 day2 day3 day4 day5 day
175/169278/265342/324353/334361/342
6 day7 day8 day9 day10 day
369/350377/358385/366393/374401/382
Base Ticket with Both Options and No Expiration
1 day2 day3 day4 day5 day
N/A303/290377/359428/409476/457
6 day7 day8 day9 day10 day
499/480537/518580/561613/594626/607


Theme park annual pass prices are also increasing. The Adult Annual Pass is up $20 to $519 and a child AP is up $28 to $478 (vs. $10 and $18 increases last ear). Adult Premium Annual Pass increased $20 to $649, while the child PAP rose $31 to $598 (vs. $10 and $21). Florida resident Annual, Premium and Seasonal Passes are also rising. Renewal prices and DVC discount prices are not yet available, but they should be posted by Sunday.

Let's take a quick look at the incremental day-by-day costs:





Incremental Ticket Price (Adult/Child)
Day 1Day 2Day 3Day 4Day 5
$85/$79$83/$76$64/$59$11/$10$8/$8
Day 6Day 7Day 8Day 9Day 10
$8/$8$8/$8$8/$8$8/$8$8/$8


Looking at this chart, you can see that the majority of the costs are still contained in the first three days. After that, the incremental cost of adding a fourth day drops tremendously, and adding a fifth through tenth day is just $8 per day (though it was $5 last year). The increments have all risen this year, by anywhere between $1 and $3, but that's about it. The big buy-in is still swallowing the cost of the first three days.

One-day, one-park water park passes are up $3 to $49 for adults and up $1 to $41 for children. DisneyQuest has had a $1 jump, to $43 for adults and $37 for children. Wide World of Sports admission is up 94 cents for adults, to $13.55, while the children's price is still unchanged at $9.34. Tickets to Cirque du Soleil's La Nouba and annual passes for water parks and DisneyQuest are unchanged.


The price increase helps Disney to cover contractually-obligated raises to employees and other rising costs of operating the theme parks and resorts. To help combat the affordability issue, Disney may continue to discount room rates and offer special pricing or Free Dining promotions, though with recent decreases in promotions that may not happen. If they do, it would be so that Disney would continue to keep attendance up and rooms filled while the relative value of the park passes continues to increase. As the economy rebounds, instead of having to put a huge price increase in place to bring prices back to market value, Disney will just continue the decrease in promotions and the net profits shoot back up. Itís a great way of preserving the relative market value of the park passes against the price increases in other entertainment venues (major league sports, movies, Broadway shows, ski passes, etc.).

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