All about Admission Media (Tickets) and When and Where to Buy It
The five-day flex pass, which is available ONLY at the Disney Store and
local "partner" hotels around Disneyland (you can't even buy them
at Disneyland's own ticket booths) are currently priced the same as the
three-day flex pass that Disneyland sells. It includes admission to
the park for up to five (versus three) days and one "Magic
Morning" early entry day. With the opening of California
Adventure, it is unclear whether or not this flex pass will still be
How to Get the Best Prices for Admission Media
If you want to get the very best admission media to meet your needs (both in terms of
price and function), I suggest you follow this process:
Check with your hotel (onsite or not) about available ticket packages and plans.
After you have those prices in hand, check at your local Disney Store (or call the
information line) to see how those plan prices compare to the cost of buying the admission
media without any extras.
While you're at the Disney Store, ask about Disney Club prices and the cost to
join the club (if you're not already a member).
Last, check at your own AAA (or other car club, if you're a member) or with your travel
agent to see if they can land you an even better deal.
The bottom line is that there is no substitute for doing your own homework.
Types of Admission Media:
There are four main kinds of Disneyland admission media:
The first, is actually called a "pass" or simply a "ticket", which
is accepted at the park for one day only.
Second, a "Flexpass" which covers multiple days (the commonly available is for
five consecutive days for the price of three, with an early entry on one day thrown in for
Third, a "length-of-stay pass" is a special passport that is valid for the
entire duration of your stay at one of the Disneyland hotels. Only Disney-owned and
operated resorts offer "length-of-stay passes."
The fourth admission media is an "annual pass", or AP, that permits entry for
an entire year dating from the date of purchase. There are actually
two kinds of AP, the "Deluxe Annual Pass" that provides admission
for a year, but with some dates blocked out (a special one-day pass for
blocked-out days is available for about $20 for Deluxe AP holders), and the
"Premium Annual Pass" which provides admission for a year with no
MousePlanet's Disneyland Information Guide gives prices and complete
descriptions of all admission media. You can read it in detail by clicking
Purchasing your Admission Media:
There are several ways you can purchase your admission media for your trip. The things
to keep in mind are convenience and line queuing. If you wait until the first time you go
to the park to buy your passes, you will undoubtedly stand in a line for more time than
you'll have patience for. After standing in the line to buy the admission media, you'll
have to stand in line to enter the park, too. Double jeopardy, but it's you're own fault
for not planning ahead.
Better ways to handle your admission media include:
Buying your admission media in advance directly from Disneyland. They will mail the
passes to you before you leave home on your trip. Delivery time will be six weeks or more,
so if you choose to do it this way, plan ahead. I'm not sure what fees, if any, are
charged for this service.
You can purchase admission media at any Disney Store in the gallerias across the
country. However, if the store is East of the Mississippi, you can't buy tickets at the
store. Instead, you'll end up buying a voucher that must be turned in for a pass when you
get to California. Save yourself the hassle and stop at a Disney store enroute.
You can purchase tickets and passports at either of the Disney-owned and operated
"Length of stay passes" can only be purchased directly through your
Disney-owned and operated resort. Those arrangements can be made when you make your room
reservations, or added later with a simple call to the resort.
You can also get admission media from many non-Disney hotels. Prices are
actually better than Disney's normal prices if the hotel is a
"participating partner" hotel.
AAA is now selling Disney admission media. You can buy the Flexpasses, for example, at
the same rate as buying direct from Disneyland.
Go ahead and buy your passes at the park, but go over and buy them the evening before
you plan to first use them. That way, you'll minimize the length of the lines you must
wait in (the queues to buy tickets diminish greatly as late afternoon turns to evening).
The only drawback is that you might, if you're not staying at a Disney-owned resort hotel,
have to pay parking for the privilege.
No fees above and beyond the cost of the admission media itself is ever imposed by any
Disney stores, resorts, or any other "official" Disney source when you are
buying admission media in person. The single exception is that Disneyland does