Would an Annual Pass save me money

Discussion in 'Budget Board' started by Larry Wade, Aug 6, 2018.

  1. Larry Wade

    Larry Wade Earning My Ears

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    I am new here to the forum, but have been watching the YouTube videos for quite some time and really enjoy them. I'm a big Disney World fan, been going one or twice a year almost my entire life.

    I haven't really considered it before, but I will be going to Disney World twice in about a month and a half span for about 5 days each and have seen some information that seems to show getting an annual pass would save money. I'm using packages for both and they each fit one of the discounts that are offered. Is there any good way to figure out whether I would save money getting the annual pass for these vacations?
     
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  2. Alesia

    Alesia DIS Veteran

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    Yep - get out a piece of paper and do the math.

    Dont forget to factor in AP room discounts. Also, if you'll have a car, don't forget to take parking fees into consideration. You'll also want to figure out if the Tables in Wonderland card will save you any money.

    You also might want to price things out buying everything separately (tickets from a reseller like Undercover Tourist, hotel through a discount site like hotels.com.) In all of my trips, I've only found one package that actually saved money over buying everything seperately.
     
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  4. Marionnette

    Marionnette Children see magic because they look for it

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    Packages generally require the purchase of tickets so you would need to take that into account.

    It would be possible to have a package for the first visit and then upgrade that ticket to an AP while there. You could then get an AP discount (if available) for your second visit. However, I have no idea of how much you would save because I don't know what kind of deal you got on the second package and I'm too lazy this morning to do the math for someone else anyway. Just calculate the cost of doing it both ways 2 separate packages vs. 1 package + AP room-only). Go with the lower price.
     
  5. davper

    davper DIS Veteran

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    Don't forget souvenir and dining discounts in your math. Will you be partaking in the waterparks? Calculate that into the cost. Will the AP have any blackout dates during your trip?

    But, you have packages for both trips and they include tickets as requirement. So you are going to have to figure in the cost of giving up that package and just getting the room only.
     
  6. disneysteve

    disneysteve DIS meet junkie

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    Generally, the cutoff to save with the AP is right around 10 days of park admission in a year. As others have said, you also have to add in dining and shopping discounts, parking fees, hotel discounts, tour discounts, PhotoPass, etc. Personally, we don't find it hard at all to come out ahead.
     
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  7. Euby

    Euby DIS Veteran

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    Are you a member of AAA? I was able to purchase my AP through them for @ $40 less than directly thru Disney.
     
  8. Derry Wade

    Derry Wade Disney dreaming :-)

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    The WDW Prep School has a good spreadsheet on this that shows you the potential savings (or lack thereof) depending on your preferences.
     
  9. LovesTimone

    LovesTimone Christmas Day 2017

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    AP holder and FL. Resident here... Our AP's includes no black out dates, all 4 parks, water parks, Photo-pass, free standard parking at the parks only, dinning & merchandise discounts, and resort discounts, discounts on tour and hard ticket events.

    For us its save quite a bit of money... You can still get the room, and dinning packages, I believe you have to call to work all that out.

    What you will find with the AP's you will want to visit more. pixiedust: and with some of the discounts it makes more magic possible....
     
  10. tex1989

    tex1989 Mouseketeer

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    We have AP's and the math seemed to favor them over not having them but it is an individual thing based on what you normally do and how you travel. Look at what the multiday tickets cost with or without the hopper feature. Two trips times 2 say 6 day passes. That's your base comparison. But then comes more decisions based on your preferences. AP comes with Park Hopping, base tickets don't. AP comes with Photopass included while you pay $169 extra for each trip if you want it. AP's come with 20% merchandise discounts, tickets don't. AP comes with 10% dinning discounts at many resturaunts tickets don't. AP's get you discounts on tours and extra activities you might want to do, tickets don't. Ap's can get you room discounts while you can score certain discounts if you don't have AP's. I tend to value the AP room discounts less than the rest only because you have to book those really quickly when they come out because they go fast. Also we tend too stay Mod/Budget so the discounts are not huge.

    The final decision for us was that having the AP made us want to get the value so since we have had them we tend to go three times a year. When we can get a week at WDW for $1,100 at PoP with a discounted airfaire with our SW Visa of about $400 (and free flights with miles about every other trip) and tickets paid for via our AP we can do cheaper trips and tend to go more often. Of course it's just the wife and I but our trips become relatively cheap by comparison.
     
  11. BridgetBordeaux

    BridgetBordeaux DIS Veteran

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    Here is the rule of thumb that I use...........
    If you can make 3 or more visits in 365 days, then you come out ahead. If you want to be a little more economical, stay offsite at least once and harness the value of the free parking at the parks. As mentioned before, having the park hopper is also a nice feature of an AP.

    Do you drive or fly? We are able to drive so that helps keep our cost down.

    Now for the downside.............if you are close and have travel flexibility, you may be the kind of person that visits many times a year because the admission is "free". That may push your true cost up a bit, but it will be a very cool 365 day experience. We would visit 4-6 times a year, often staying off site for all but one visit. We really enjoyed it.
     
    Last edited: Aug 7, 2018
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  12. disneymagicgirl

    disneymagicgirl Been there, Done that, Going back!

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    good to know!
     
  13. disneymagicgirl

    disneymagicgirl Been there, Done that, Going back!

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    You will just have to do the math.

    I just went through this because I had a trip this past weekend, another pre/post cruise stay in dec, and will do a trip late next July/early aug too. I came out ahead by just doing the tix each time, but it was close, and if I could have squeezed in another day or 2 in the parks or another short trip the AP would have made sense.
     
  14. Larry Wade

    Larry Wade Earning My Ears

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    I appreciate the information. It will be tough to figure out exactly I know.
     
  15. Carrie Ellis

    Carrie Ellis DIS Veteran

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    We are going in 2019 for 8 days. We are military so we can get our tickets basically tax free. So I did some quick math.
    The difference between the AP and the 8 day is $440.
    Memory maker is free with AP and Military it is $100. So that makes the difference $340 now.
    Parking at $22/day at 8 days is $175. Now the difference is $165.
    We are planning on the Hoop de doo. We can use it on 10 of us so that should be around a $60 savings at 10%. That makes the difference around $105 now.
    Approximate $40 savings at a couple of other restaurants which makes the difference around $65.

    I am not even adding the potential merchandise savings too (20%). I thought we might do a quick trip before the year is out with the AP. Maybe just my husband and I during the food and wine festival. So this makes it a wash definitely!

    If they don't change anything, I think it might be worth it.
     
  16. BridgetBordeaux

    BridgetBordeaux DIS Veteran

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    Carrie----
    1. I am assuming your 8 day trip is off site. (based on your 22/day savings projection)
    2. I assume you will be able to get the 4 or 5 day mil salute tickets in 2019
    3. If you are on the fence, maybe get one AP to harness the benefits and do your best to make a return trip in less than 365 days and the non AP person simply buys a 4 or 5 day ticket for that return trip.
    4. For you guys, its definitely the return trip that will put deep you into the savings.
     
  17. Carrie Ellis

    Carrie Ellis DIS Veteran

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    We usually get the military salute tickets but this time we will purchase just discounted through the military tickets. I have a feeling it will be extremely busy December 2019 with it being the holidays and Star Wars. We would like to be able to go into the parks everyday even if just for a little bit. The AP on base is $857.50 (right now) and the 8 day on base is $417. So the difference is about $440. I figure if we can make up the $440 (or close to it) in savings then it is a no brainer! We are staying off site. I will have two 23 year olds and two 19 year olds by then. They might have girlfriends and a boy friend (I have only 1 girl ha) that they would like to bring along. Even if they did not, Disney is sooooo high for us to stay onsite sadly. We did it for years but no more. My sister and i split a VRBO...a really really awesome one that is super close. My parents pull their RV and stay at Fort Wilderness. So we tied to them and can still do the 60 day FPs. IF everything stay the same!!!
     
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  18. Sleepy425

    Sleepy425 DIS Veteran

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    Remember that you can do a ticketless package with dining only for the second stay. So if you’re partial to the dining plan, don’t forget that option. (I only like the dining plan for one night stays to maximize the deluxe plan, and have it booked as a ticketless package next year. But I know many people enjoy not having to worry about their meals on vacation).
    This will exclude you from any Free Dining promos, but it’s worth knowing it’s an option if you like the dining plan.
     
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