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Buying Walt Disney World Annual Passes

Disney Pixar Cars: Lightning McQueen at Disney's Hollywood Studios [© 2019, floridareview.co.uk, all rights reserved]
Disney Pixar Cars: Lightning McQueen at Disney's Hollywood Studios [© 2019, floridareview.co.uk, all rights reserved]

If you plan on an extended stay in Florida, plan multiple visits during the year or you live in Florida, then an annual pass to Walt Disney World can make good economic sense and most annual passes give you added benefits such as complimentary standard parking, park hopping and discounts on some dining and merchandise.

During the worst of the COVID-19 pandemic, Disney stopped selling new annual passes but still allowed existing annual pass holders to renew their passes.

Passes can be renewed on an annual basis on or before the expiry date and as an existing annual pass holder you get a 15% discount on current purchase price when you renew.

New Walt Disney World Annual Pass Options

When Disney started selling annual passes again on September 8, 2021, they discontinued all the old annual pass tiers and introduced four brand new Walt Disney World annual passes:

  • Disney Pixsy Dust Pass — available to Florida Residents only
  • Disney Pirate Pass — available to Florida Residents only
  • Disney Sorcerer Pass — available to Florida Residents and Disney Vacation Club members only
  • Disney Incredi-Pass — available to everyone

All existing pass holders will have to switch to one of the new passes when their old annual pass expires.

For Florida residents and Disney Vacation Club (DVC) members, you can find all the details for the special Florida residents & DVC annual passes here which are cheaper than the non-resident passes but have more restrictions such as blackout dates especially during the busier periods.

All (US or international) visitors used to be able to buy two different annual passes that had no blackout dates:

  • Disney Platinum Pass giving unlimited access to Disney’s Magic Kingdom, Epcot, Hollywood Studios and Animal Kingdom for a whole year
  • Disney Platinum Plus Pass which as well as access to the four main parks also gave unlimited access to Disney’s water parks (Blizzard Beach and Typhoon Lagoon), Disney’s Oak Trail golf course, DisneyQuest and ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex for a whole year

With the introduction of the new passes, out-of-state visitors can now only buy one annual pass, the Disney Incredi-Pass which gives a years access to Disney’s Magic Kingdom, Epcot, Hollywood Studios and Animal Kingdom with no blockout dates. This pass is equivalent to the old Disney Platinum Pass.

Note that all Disney annual passes exclude special ticketed events like Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party but you can sometimes get discounted tickets.

Instead of the old Disney Platinum Plus Pass, you can now buy the Disney Incredi-Pass plus the separate $99 Water Park and Sports Option add-on which also gives you access to the water parks, some golf courses and ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex.

The Disney Incredi-Pass also comes with:

  • complimentary standard parking
  • park hopping
  • up to 20% discount on selected merchandise and food
  • discounts on other Disney offerings
  • pass holder perks like fridge magnets and artwork prints, especially during the festivals
  • no blackout dates

One thing that used to be included in both of the Platinum Passes was unlimited PhotoPass Downloads. This is also now a $99 add-on with the new Disney Incredi-Pass.

This gives you digital access any digital photographs taken on the rides or by the official Disney PhotoPass photographers.

At this time there is no mention of whether Disney will re-introduce an equivalent to the old Premier Passport that used to give you one year’s access to both Walt Disney World and the two Disney parks in California.

Walt Disney World annual pass ticket options are:

Walt Disney World Ticket Information Pages

Walt Disney World Annual Pass 2021 Ticket Prices

In 2015, Disney changed their annual passes and amended some of the benefits. All Disney theme park annual passes included complimentary standard parking, park hopping and a MagicBand.

The complimentary magic bands were withdrawn before the new passes came into being in 2021 but two other significant perks have been removed as well.

Firstly, access to Disney’s two water parks (Blizzard Beach and Typhoon Lagoon), Disney golf courses and the ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex are now a $99 add-on rather than being part of the new annual pass.

These prices are subject to change and you should check with Walt Disney World for the latest prices.

Likewise the unlimited PhotoPass downloads are also a $99 add-on so you now need to pay extra to access any digital photographs taken on the rides or by the official Disney PhotoPass photographers. However you only need to purchase one Disney PhotoPass Download add-on per family group.

Note that on all annual passes Walt Disney World does not offer reduced annual pass prices for children, adult and child prices are the same.

Walt Disney World Annual Pass Reservations

As a result of the pandemic, all admissions to the Disney theme parks are now controlled by having to make a reservation first for each specific date that you wish to visit. Before this new rule, all annual pass holders could gain admittance any day except for blackout dates (subject to any capacity limits) whereas now they are potentially limited.

Disney Incredi-Pass annual pass holders are limited to making up to five reservations at a time. Once you have used your allocation, you cannot make another reservation until you use up one of your slots. The number of reservations available on a given day to pass holders is limited so you may not be able to actually visit one of the parks on the day you want.

Once you have made a reservation for the first park you want to visit that day, you can then park hop to any of the other parks, after 2 p.m. subject to capacity, without having to make another reservation. But you must firstly enter the park you made your initial reservation for, you cannot simply turn up at another park after 2 p.m.

This does mean if you cannot get a reservation for your preferred park, you might be able to visit another park first and then park hop after 2 p.m.

Disney has said they will allocate additional “bonus” reservation dates at certain times of the year which will not count towards your reservation limits. Presumably this will be when the parks are quieter.

Note however that pass holders staying at a Walt Disney World Resort can book reservations for each day of their stay and these do not count towards the five reservation limit.

Disney Incredi Pass to Disney's Magic Kingdom, Epcot, Hollywood Studios and Animal Kingdom - all guests Adult Child
Park to park admission to Disney's Magic Kingdom, Epcot, Hollywood Studios and Animal Kingdom for a whole year with no blackout dates.
Includes park to park admission, standard parking, 20% discount on selected merchandise and food and discounts on other Disney offerings. No blackout dates. Excludes special ticketed events like Mickey's Not-So-Scary Halloween Party.
$1299.00
plus tax
$1299.00
plus tax
Unlimited Disney PhotoPass digital downloads Adult Child
Access all your digital photos taken by Disney PhotoPass photographers.
Can only be purchased as an add-on to a Disney Annual pass. Only one Disney PhotoPass Downloads required per family group.
$99.00
plus tax
$99.00
plus tax
Water Park and Sports Option add-on Adult Child
Visit Disney’s two water parks (Blizzard Beach and Typhoon Lagoon), Disney’s Oak Trail Golf Course, Disney’s Oak Trail Golf Course - FootGolf, Disney’s Fantasia Gardens Miniature Golf Course (prior to 4:00 p.m.), Disney’s Winter Summerland Miniature Golf Course (prior to 4:00 p.m.) and ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex.
Can only be purchased as an add-on to a Disney Annual pass.
$99.00
plus tax
$99.00
plus tax
Water Park Annual Pass to both Disney's Blizzard Beach and Typhoon Lagoon - NOT CURRENTLY AVAILABLE Adult Child
Park admission to both Disney's Blizzard Beach and Typhoon Lagoon for a whole year with no blackout dates.
$139.00
plus tax
$139.00
plus tax