Arrow-right Camera
The Spokesman-Review Newspaper
Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883

Disneyland ticket prices quadruple since 2000, annual passes up 700%

Santa Claus is the star attraction in Disneyland's annual Christmas Fantasy Parade, which runs through Jan. 7.    (Joshua Sudock/Disneyland Resort/TNS)
By Brady MacDonald Orange County Register

ANAHEIM, Calif. – Disneyland has quadrupled the top price for tickets since 2000 and increased the cost of premium annual passes more than 700% during the same period while holding the lowest price admission to the Anaheim theme parks steady for about a decade.

The cost of tickets to Disneyland has increased 351% from $43 in 2000 to $194 in 2023 – more than quadrupling the cost of admission on the most expensive days in less than a quarter century.

Since the parks returned from a yearlong pandemic closure, top-tier ticket prices for Disneyland and Disney California Adventure have jumped 35% from $144 in April 2021.

The lowest-priced daily tickets for the least-popular dates have climbed 13% over the past decade – rising from $92 in 2013 to $104 in 2023.

That rock bottom $104 ticket is above the cost of inflation since 2000. The $43 ticket from 2000 adjusted for inflation would be $76 in 2023, based on the Consumer Price Index.

Disneyland annual pass prices have increased faster than daily ticket prices since the start of the millennium. The top-tier annual pass skyrocketed 729% from $199 in 2000 to $1,649 for the Inspire Key in 2023.

Since the pandemic closure of the parks, top-tier Magic Key annual passes for Disneyland and Disney California Adventure have climbed 18% from $1,399 in April 2021 for the Dream Key. Disneyland offers lower-priced annual passes starting as low as $499 for the Imagine Key with the most blockout dates.

Bargain hunters can save on daily Disneyland tickets if they know where to look and have some flexibility in their vacation planning.

Disneyland is offering discounts on kids’ tickets for as low as $50 and for Southern California residents for as low as $75 starting in January.

A lot has changed at the Disneyland resort since 2000 – and Disney has poured billions into the Anaheim theme park resort since then.

Disney California Adventure debuted in 2001 as the sister park to Walt Disney’s original theme park.

The struggling second gate underwent a massive $1.1 billion multi-year makeover that added the “World of Color” water show in 2010, the Little Mermaid dark ride in 2011 and Cars Land and Buena Vista Street in 2012.

Since then, Disney has invested heavily in new lands (Star Wars Galaxy’s Edge, Avengers Campus), refreshed lands (Pixar Pier, San Fransokyo Square), new attractions (Mickey & Minnie’s Runaway Railway), rethemed attractions (Mickey’s Philharmagic, Adventureland Treehouse, Tiana’s Bayou Adventure), rethemed hotels (Pixar Place) and new parades, shows and nighttime spectaculars.

Disneyland’s increasing ticket prices will fuel further growth under Disney’s long-term plans for the Anaheim theme park resort.

The DisneylandForward proposal seeks to update a 1990s Anaheim city plan to allow for a mix of theme park, hotel, retail, dining and entertainment on the eastern and western edges of the Disneyland resort.

The long-term planning proposal dangles six possible projects based on Frozen, Tangled, Peter Pan, Zootopia, Toy Story and Tron as the types of lands and attractions Anaheim is missing out on under current city planning and zoning guidelines.

In September, Disney announced plans to invest $60 billion in Disneyland, Disney California Adventure and other theme parks around the world over the next decade.