Discount Disney World Tickets Buying Guide (2018)

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Tickets to Walt Disney World are the least flexible part of planning your trip. With flights, hotels, and dining, you have a variety of really good options and ways to save. But it's harder to find deals on Disney World tickets.

There are ways to find discount Disney World tickets, though. In this post, we review different ways to find discount Disney World tickets, comparing them according to savings, difficulty of obtaining the discount (this includes costs you have to front to get the discount), and risk that you'll run into problems with your ticket.

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OUR CHOICE For Discount Disney World tickets

Undercover Tourist

Discount: About 10% - Difficulty: None - Risk: None

There are a few ticket agencies that sell 100% legitimate discount Disney World tickets. Usually these deals are about 8-10% lower than Disney's prices for exactly the same product. You’ll even find tickets to special events like Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party and Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party.

We recommend Undercover Tourist for discount Disney World tickets.

We've used them multiple times and never had any problems. If you're at all concerned about buying tickets from a third-party seller, we've got you covered with a post dedicated entirely to why we recommend Undercover Tourist for Disney discounts.

As an example, five days of park hopping for a family of four would cost $1960 is tickets were purchased through Disney World's website, but only $1808 through Undercover tourist, that's easy savings of over $150!

The Standard Discounts

The next set of discounts are standard deals that are either easy to get for everyone or easy to get once you've worked your way into an exclusive group for the discount.

Disney World Website

"Discount": $20 - Difficulty: None - Risk: None

For 3-day tickets and longer, buying on the Disney website or via phone "saves" you $20 per ticket. The reason we use quotes is that most people will be buying online. You'll pay the $20 penalty if you buy at the gate instead of online.

Florida Resident Discount

Discount: About 30% - Difficulty: High - Risk: None

Florida residents receive decent discounts on Disney World tickets, but their ticket options are somewhat limited (no 2-day ticket, for example).

 
 Florida resident discounts can be deep, but options are sometimes limited.

Florida resident discounts can be deep, but options are sometimes limited.

 

Moreover, Florida residents who are serious about Disney should probably consider a Disney World annual pass (for which they also receive a discount).

Disney Vacation Club Discount

Discount: About 10% - Difficulty: High - Risk: None

Disney Vacation Club members occasionally get ticket discount offers. For most DVC members, it will make sense just to have an annual pass, so it's rare that these ticket offers are going to be worth much. They also aren't very high when they do happen. If you're a DVC member, look into an annual pass, and pay attention to deals as they pop up. But definitely don't wait for them or plan too heavily around them.

Military Discount

Discount: Up to 50% - Difficulty: Heroic - Risk: Heroic

Okay, so you can access military discounts even through a friend who is in the military, but nonetheless someone in your circle must be heroic to access these discounts. Military discounts at Disney come and go.

The best source for information on these discounts, including prices and how to buy, is Military Disney Tips.

AAA Discount

Discount: Very Low - Difficulty: Medium - Risk: None

At one point, AAA discounts were a decent way to save on Disney World tickets. No more. First of all, the discounts come from individual branches, so you'll have to call local AAA offices to get quotes. Second, their discounts tend to be pretty small, often beaten by the prices you'll find on ticket broker sites. Worth a phone call, if you're already a member, but no worth effort beyond that.

Deal Hunting

Not so much "discounts," these are out of the box ways to carefully consider before trying.

Using Discount Disney Gift Cards

Discount: Varies (about 8%) - Difficulty: Medium - Risk: None

This will rarely be the best deal you can get, but we want to mention it for the sake of completeness. You can typically get discount Disney gift cards, saving about 8 to 10% on Disney purchases, including park tickets.

The Annual Pass

Discount: Varies - Difficulty: Medium - Risk: None

You came looking for discounts, and we're telling you to maybe just buy a yearlong ticket? Hear us out.

A single Walt Disney World annual pass for an adult with no special discounts costs $829.64 after taxes. A four-day park hopper ticket from Undercover Tourist costs $356.95. That means two four-day trips will cost you $713.90. That's close enough that if you're planning two trips of at least three days each, you'll want to look at whether the annual pass makes sense on ticket prices alone.

Also consider these two perks of the annual pass:

  1. The Annual Pass comes with Photopass photos, while Memory Maker costs $169 before taxes.

  2. The Annual Pass comes with 20% discounts on some dining and merchandise.

It might make sense for one family member to get an annual pass for those two perks! Finally, let's be real...

Are you a Walt Disney World addict? Because on ticket price alone, once you take two four-day trips, that third one comes at a "cost" of just $115.74 (that's $829.64 - $713.90). So maybe instead of doing your standard two trips, you do a third and use our tips to save on hotels, book cheap flights, book Disney hotels with points, or book flights with points. Tickets are the hardest place to save big, and an annual pass makes it easy, at least on your third trip each year.

eBay

Discount: 10-30% - Difficulty: Medium - Risk: EXTREME!!

We don't advocate buying tickets on eBay. The reason is pretty simple - prices for many, if not all, things on eBay are determined in part by the risk associated with buying over eBay. Can you find legitimate tickets on eBay? Of course! Will the legitimate tickets have big discounts? No! There are going to be a few people who put up an eBay account just to sell tickets they lucked into, but you can't distinguish those from scammers. If someone has 1000+ positive reviews for selling park tickets, they aren't going to have to offer much of a discount. In short, finding a true, legitimate discount on a ticket via eBay is incredibly difficult, and never worth the risk of getting to the park and being denied entry!

All Your Other Disney World Planning Questions Answered

Don't be overwhelmed by Disney World planning! Take a second to check out our most important content and you'll not only be an expert, but you'll save big $$$ along the way. If you're still picking dates, we've got everything you need to know about Disney crowd calendars. For picking your hotel, check out our Walt Disney World hotels guide.

When it comes time to book, we've got you covered with posts on how to book cheap flights, how to get the best deal on your Disney hotel, and where to find discount Disney World tickets.

Don't forget to master your Disney World FastPass+ strategy a few months in advance. We'll keep you out of long lines so you can maximize the magical time in the parks! We've got park-specific guides as well: Magic Kingdom FastPass, Epcot FastPass, Animal Kingdom FastPass, and Hollywood Studios FastPass.

Know what to ride with our guides to: Magic Kingdom rides, Hollywood Studios rides, Epcot rides, and Animal Kingdom rides!

Finally, before you head out, be sure to check out our to-the-point packing list, 10 essentials you forget to pack for every Disney trip. And if you're interested in saving, there's no better list than our 53 Ways to Save on your Disney trip from start to finish.

Where do you buy your discount Disney World tickets? Did we miss Anything??

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