Citing a need to modulate visitation patterns, Walt
Disney Parks and Resorts is instituting tiered pricing that will assign
“value,” “regular” and “peak” single-day rates for different days of the year,
effective 6 a.m. on Feb. 28.
The current rate of $105 for the Magic Kingdom will
become the new value rate, meaning that the new structure also heralds an
increase in the average admission price for that park. The regular price will rise
to $110, and the peak price will be $124.
Similarly, the current $97 daily admission to Epcot,
Animal Kingdom and Hollywood Studios will become the value price, with regular
pricing moving up to $102 and peak to $114.
Only Disneyland in Southern California will have a new tier that is lower than
current regular pricing, with value pricing dropping to $95 from its current
daily rate of $99, although the new regular price rises to $105 and peak to
Which days are value, regular or peak will vary at
individual parks and will be determined by the venue’s visitation patterns.
Disney said that peak days will fall around spring break/Easter, some summer
weekends and winter holidays.
Individual park websites will post calendars with pricing
information eight to 11 months in advance. The prices will be locked in, with
Disney noting that there will be no “surge” pricing effects once a calendar is
Although Disney declined to put a percentage on the de
facto rate increase that the new pricing structure represents, prices will rise
for the majority of calendar days. A plurality of days will fall under the new
regular pricing, which will represent 49% of Disney World's calendar and 46% of
Disneyland's; value pricing will be in effect for 22% of the time at Walt
Disney World and 27% of Disneyland; and peak pricing will account for 29% at
Walt Disney World and 27% at Disneyland.
Package pricing will also change, though those changes
will be package-specific, with no percentage or fixed daily rate formula
uniformly applied. The company said it expects the majority of guests to
continue to select multi-day tickets or annual prices, “which provide the best
Disney had signaled its consideration of experimenting
with pricing models when it surveyed annual pass holders last year about a
three-tiered structure that would bump up prices during summer, Christmas and
The company said the overall hike is “on par” with
previous increases, and stressed that the prime motivator for the new structure
is to impact visitation patterns and provide a positive guest experience. “The
demand for our theme parks continues to grow, particularly during peak
periods,” said Disney spokeswoman Jacquee Wahler. The pricing changes were part
of a broader effort to “help better spread visitation throughout the year.”
When the parks hit capacity during high seasons, Disney closes
the entrance gates for brief periods.
Disney's tiered pricing comes just weeks after Universal
Studios Hollywood announced demand pricing in advance of the opening of that
park’s Harry Potter attraction.
Disney parks in Shanghai and Paris had already instituted
variable rates while Hong Kong has not. (Tokyo Disney is not owned or operated
by Disney Parks and Resorts.)
While not citing capacity issues specifically, Disney mentioned
new and announced park attractions in a blog post announcing the new pricing to
consumers. Among these are Frozen Ever After at Epcot, Star Wars lands at
Disneyland and Disney Hollywood Studios, Toy Story Land at Hollywood Studios,
and the World of Avatar at Animal Kingdom.
“As you may have
read in the news, the demand for Disney parks continues to grow, particularly
during peak periods,” the blog said. ”At the same time, we have an unwavering
commitment to exceeding the expectations of all our guests. It is … why we
continue to look for ways to help spread out visitation.”