Should I buy a Disneyland annual pass?

dlpassportWe live in Northern California, about a 6 hour drive to Disneyland. For us, it was an easy choice to buy annual passes to Disneyland. After two trips, our passes were paid for. You might be wondering if annual passes are right for you, and if you would save in the long run.

If you know you will be in Southern California, ask yourself if a trip to Disneyland is a possibility. How many trips will it take for you to pay for your annual passes? If the cost will be more for individual trips, consider the annual pass option.

There are also the discounts that go along with your passes. Your annual pass will get you discounts on hotels, tours, food, and merchandise. The discount range is typically 10%-20% depending on which pass you choose.

We’ve been buying annual passes for the last two years now. It didn’t take us long to recover the up-front costs involved with the passes. It was worth it for our family of four since we end up going at least three times each year. Once Emma, our oldest daughter, is in kindergarten, we may reconsider the annual pass cost, because we may not get to go as often.

Annual passes range from $269-$849. For now, children under 3 years of age are free, and there is a discounted price for children ages 3-9. Because Emma was free until she turned 3, we felt like we were really getting the best value for our visit.

For more information about annual passes and to see which pass is right for you, visit Disney.


  1. Rigo

    We’ve been trying to convince my sister and brother in law (who live in Berkeley) to get AP’s but they still don’t think it’s worth it. They are having our nieces birthday at Disneyland next month, and are going to pay full price for entry. Hopefully this blog post can convince them to take the plunge :-)

    1. Cam

      If not, have them look online at to see if they can get a discounted pass. However, with an AP, they’ll be able to visit again!

  2. We’ve had the same discussion several times. Our family is in Southern California where I grew up and my family members have passes. We now how a kindergartner and a 3 year old. We did the math and not sure it adds up to buy 4 passes plus a kid in school. Any tips? Anything that will make it worth our while? We all love disney. Thanks for the post!!
    Probably why we just did this:

    1. Cam

      If that math doesn’t add up for you, I suggest stockpiling the passes when Costco has them. They have them twice a year online and at Christmas you can find them in the actual store. You can buy them and hold onto them for up to a year. It’s hard once the kids start school. We do 4 trips, each trip is at least 4 days. That’s why it’s worth it for our family.

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