June 22, 2024

New Discount Multi-Day Magic Tickets at Disney World for Spring to Fall 2024

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Walt Disney World has introduced new special offers on two different discounted multi-Day 'Magic' tickets for Spring to Fall 2024 available for the general public to purchase that don't require reservations. This shares details about

Walt Disney World has introduced new special offers on two different discounted multi-Day ‘Magic’ tickets for Spring to Fall 2024 available for the general public to purchase that don’t require reservations. This shares details about the deal and whether it’s too good to be true, plus our commentary about why it’s being offered and if it makes sense to buy.

Let’s start with the classic 4-Park Magic Ticket, which starts from $99 per day, plus tax (total price starting from $396, plus tax). The 4-Park Magic Ticket includes one admission to each of the 4 Walt Disney World theme parks—Magic Kingdom park, Disney’s Animal Kingdom theme park, EPCOT and Disney’s Hollywood Studios—for a total of 4 admissions, on 4 separate days. Limit one admission per theme park, one theme park per day.

The 4-Park Magic Ticket does not require a theme park reservation to enter the Walt Disney World theme parks. It is a date-based ticket with start dates from April 2 through September 22, 2024. Ticket must be used within 7 days of selected start date. Ticket may not be used to enter the same theme park on more than one day. All tickets and options are non-transferable and non-refundable, and exclude activities/events that are separately priced or not open to the general public.

New for 2024 is the 3-Day, 3- Park Ticket that’s valid for admission to Disney’s Hollywood Studios, EPCOT and Disney’s Animal Kingdom only. This starts from $89 per day, plus tax (total price starting from $267, plus tax). Limit one admission per theme park, one theme park per day—for a total of 3 admissions, on 3 separate days. (Note that this does not mean you can only enter the park once; re-entry is allowed with these tickets. I don’t know why Disney worded it this way.)

However, the 3-Day, 3- Park Ticket is NOT valid for admission to Magic Kingdom. The 3-Day, 3- Park Ticket also does not require a theme park reservation to enter the aforementioned Walt Disney World theme parks. This is a date-based ticket with start dates from April 2 through September 24, 2024. Ticket must be used within 5 days of selected start date.

You can buy directly from Walt Disney World or at an even deeper discount via Get Away Today! Additionally, Get Away Today offers an exclusive discount to readers of this site–enter promo code DTB23 at checkout for an extra $5 off this Magic Ticket! The ticket is also offered by travel agents, other authorized third parties (e.g. Undercover Tourist and maybe AAA–I’m not sure where else), etc.

If the 4-Day, 4-Park Magic Ticket sounds familiar, that’s good–it should. Something very similar was offered last summer. That 4-Park version of this ticket was released on May 23, and encompassed summer and fall. It was not date-based, but was subject to blockout dates from July 1 to July 4 and September 1 to September 4.

Last year’s version of this deal was insanely popular. Not in the sense that it was a hot topic on social media or had people doing viral dances about it or whatever. But in terms of sales, it was a huge hit. You might recall that Fourth of July was downright dead last year, to the point that it made national headlines and even Bob Iger addressed the issue, attributing it to the weather. (He was only partially right–the real issue was overly aggressively blockouts.)

That led to our follow-up: Why Labor Day Will Be ‘Dead’ at Walt Disney World. That (accurate) prediction was pretty easy to make, and was predicated largely upon the 4-Park Magic Ticket blockout. Suffice to say, Walt Disney World has learned from that mistake and is doing date-based tickets with no blockouts for 2024.

As for what that means, it’s that the prices above are simply the starting rates for the Magic Tickets. While the 4-Park version starts at $99 per day, the dates offering that price are mostly during the August and September off-season, as well as the late April to May shoulder season. Ditto the 3-Park version and its $89 per day dates.

If you wanted to use the tickets for Fourth of July, for example, you’re going to be paying quite a bit more per day, with a cost of $118-$119 for the 4-Park ticket. The most expensive dates are actually around Memorial Day, when the cost spikes to its maximum of $121 per day. There are also $118 to $120 date ranges throughout most of April 2024, which is still Spring Break season.

I’m actually surprised dates around Memorial Day and Independence Day are so expensive. Like Labor Day, these have become less popular holidays at Walt Disney World over the years. Fourth of July is still fairly busy, but not like it once was–presumably due to other travel costs, AP/CM blockouts, and Disney’s pricing. Memorial Day is the unofficial start to summer season, but most families aren’t quite ready to take their big vacation then. None of these holidays are big like Easter, Veteran’s Day, Thanksgiving, Christmas, or NYE.

Anyway, I wouldn’t expect this deal to move the needle much on those dates this year. It’s certainly not going to induce demand from deal-hunters who don’t already have trips planned. Especially when those seeking bargains could just visit a week or so earlier in May and pay $99 per day, or arrive on July 7 and also pay $99 per day.

While I think the pricing around those holidays is perhaps a tad too aggressive, it’s still better than blocking out those dates entirely, like last year. In general, using the date-based pricing is incredibly savvy and should help (to some degree) redistribute demand more evenly. And that’s the whole point of this ticket in the first place!

Speaking of which, it’s incredibly smart of Walt Disney World to use the Magic Ticket to prevents its purchasers from spending multiple days in Magic Kingdom or Disney’s Hollywood Studios. It’s one day at each Walt Disney World theme park (minus Magic Kingdom with the 3-Day ticket) with no option to purchase Park Hopping.

In the past, the company has used theme park reservations to limit access to Magic Kingdom and Disney’s Hollywood Studios, redistributing attendance and push people towards Animal Kingdom and EPCOT to increase the utilization of those parks and normalize numbers across all four parks. That was an instance of the infamous “yield management” approach discussed by executives on earnings calls and in interviews. But that’s gone for 2024!

It’s still a somewhat similar idea here. If left to their own devices, tourists would not visit Animal Kingdom and EPCOT in the same numbers or with the same frequency as Magic Kingdom (also known simply as “Disneyworld” to many casual guests) or Disney’s Hollywood Studios (aka “The Star Wars Park” or “The One With All the ‘Big’ Rides and New Stuff”).

The 4-Day, 4-Park Magic Ticket essentially accomplishes that, with its purchasers spending 25% of their vacation days at each park. This makes it a fantastic deal for Walt Disney World visitors on a budget or those who dedicate a day to each park. That’s doubly true now that there’s per-park pricing for the Genie+ service, as that’s also cheaper for 3 parks and more expensive for Magic Kingdom or the multi-park option.

Same idea with the 3-Park version, which excludes Magic Kingdom–the most popular park at Walt Disney World. Frankly, I think this is what Walt Disney World should’ve done starting around 2022 when it became clear park reservations were no longer strictly necessary to manage crowds. But hindsight is 20/20.

Instead, they started playing games with reservation availability in order to “force” people to visit Animal Kingdom or EPCOT, which was never going to work. If you’re buying a 1-day ticket to see Cinderella Castle or Star Wars Stuff, you’re not going to be satisfied with a bunch of live flamingos and fictional blue aliens as a consolation prize. Disney did not successfully manipulate the behavior of many one-off single-day visitors with park reservations; instead, those folks largely did not visit at all!

The Magic Ticket is a better idea because it’s voluntary. Instead of trying to manipulate behavior, it essentially proposes a trade: you visit all 4 parks equally, or Magic Kingdom not at all, and you get a discount. Many guests on tighter budget will happily agree to this offer. It’s a win for them! It’s a win for Walt Disney World! Everyone goes home (or rather, to the parks) happy!

As for the “why?” of this Magic Ticket being released right as Spring Break season is starting (and over a full month earlier than last year), it’s the same reason as last year. Pent-up demand continues to exhaust itself and there are signs of softness on the horizon for Walt Disney World. We’ve mentioned repeatedly that Walt Disney World is pulling out the ‘2019 discount playbook’ in trying to reverse lagging attendance and hotel occupancy trends.

However, we’ve also seen and received mixed signals over the last couple of months as Walt Disney World has, for the most part, been busier than last year, reversing months of year-over-year declines. This is something we discussed recently in Re-Revenge Travel at Walt Disney World in 2024. In a nutshell, possible factors for the bounceback are that fears of a recession are diminishing, inflation is easing, real wages are increasing, and consumer confidence is improving.

Another possibility is that this might be a slight ‘reverberation’ after the pent-up demand of 2022. That 2023 was the ‘break’ year for families that visit Walt Disney World semi-frequently, and they’re returning in 2024. Yet another is that the winter months are going to be outliers, and families have shifted trips from the hot summer and early fall months (especially after how brutal last year was!) into the milder months of January and February. Lots of possibilities, few (if any) answers.

With that said, I would not read anything–or at least too much–into this ticket deal or it being released earlier in 2024. There were signs that Walt Disney World was caught flat-footed by the sharp and sudden end of revenge travel last year after Spring Break. That they scrambled to do things to offset the drop in tourist demand, but it still wasn’t enough.

The Magic Ticket was one such initiative. Again, it was released on May 23. That was over a full month after crowds had dropped sharply, resulting in an atypically slow shoulder season. And again, hindsight is 20/20, but I’m sure there were plenty of people within the company who wished they would’ve released last year’s version of this ticket deal by mid-April. They probably also regret those blockout dates, and other details.

Basically, what we’re seeing in terms of discounts in 2024 at Walt Disney World (and Disneyland) is reactionary. It’s based on lessons learned last year, and not wanting a repeat of earnings calls during which the CFO had to warn of a slowdown at Walt Disney World, followed by several consecutive calls mentioning decreased attendance and occupancy.

This isn’t to say the forward-looking forecast doesn’t also indicate (to Disney) that this deal is a good idea. It probably does/is! Just that I wouldn’t see this special offer, as a fan, and assume it means Walt Disney World is bracing itself for an even slower summer than last year. It wouldn’t be the least bit surprising if the ‘revenge travel reverberation’ continues, and is partly fueled by this Magic Ticket promo being released earlier, when more dealhounds can take advantage and plan around it.

As for whether we’d recommend the 4-Park Magic ticket deal for Walt Disney World visitors, that depends. First, are you currently planning on visiting all four theme parks? Do you intend upon spending an entire day at each of them? Would you skip the Park Hopper option?

If the answer to all 4 of those questions is yes, then buying this ticket is absolutely the right decision for you. If you’re on a tight budget and a vacation to Walt Disney World is already stretching your vacation dollars, then this ticket offer also probably makes sense if it fits pretty with your vacation parameters or is “close enough.”

In pricing out Walt Disney World tickets, it should be fairly obvious that the 3-Park or 4-Park Magic ticket is a good deal–and that’s even as compared to discounts offered by authorized third party ticket sellers. As compared to front gate prices, this is a tremendous savings on admission–often over $100 per person.

Accordingly, if you’re a bottom dollar kind of visitor and this works within your Walt Disney World vacation plans, it’s a pretty open and closed case. You should buy one of the Magic Tickets for your Walt Disney world trip–it’s a good to great promo for your circumstances. It’s rare to see this deep of discounts offered to the general public on tickets, and it’s a really attractive offer even considering the “catch.”

One great use case is for those who are planning to attend Mickey’s Not So Scary Halloween Party in August or September 2024. Keep in mind that MNSSHP attendees are allowed to enter Magic Kingdom as early as 4 pm with purchase of admission to that separately-ticketed special event. (Assuming that decade-plus old policy doesn’t change.)

With the 3-Park Magic Ticket plus Mickey’s Not So Scary Halloween Party tickets, you could still get your Magic Kingdom fix without a dedicated park day on the standalone ticket. With the 4-Park version (which is what we’d recommend), you could double-dip in Magic Kingdom.

If your trip is time-constrained, you could do morning and early afternoon at Animal Kingdom, and then bounce over to Magic Kingdom at 4 pm for MNSSHP. Or, you could do Mickey’s Not So Scary Halloween Party on a different day completely, enjoying pool time or Disney Springs on your MNSSHP morning. Either way, you’d be able to spend 1.5 days at Magic Kingdom! (From that perspective, the savings offered by this Disney Magic Ticket also makes it easier to justify the high cost of MNSSHP.)

In short, there are many use cases for the 3-Day or 4-Day Disney Magic Ticket. It’s going to be a really great option for families wanting to cut costs and reduce their vacation budget. Paired with one of the room-only discounts that’s currently available, it should make a Walt Disney World vacation possible for some people who might’ve previously thought it was out of reach. Or it might be able to make the trip cheaper, and allow for splurging elsewhere. It’s a really great deal–and a rare general public ticket discount.

However, the Magic Ticket deal is not for everyone, and we would encourage those who are on the fence to give it more thought and consider whether the savings are enough to overcome this ticket’s shortcomings. As with everything, there’s no one-size-fits-all advice when it comes to Walt Disney World, but this is not a ticket that we would personally purchase or recommend to most first-timers or infrequent visitors.

As explained in our Money-Saving Guide to Walt Disney World Tickets, we are huge Park Hopper fans and advocates. That’s one of the first and highest-priority splurges we’d recommend making, even if it comes at the expense of table service meals, Genie+ and Lightning Lanes, or just about anything else. That’s especially true for those with fewer days at Walt Disney World. (Not so much for parents with small children or anyone else who realistically won’t spend all day in the parks.)

Although all of them can be full-day parks, we struggle with recommending that first-timers spend 25% of their vacation time at Animal Kingdom. It can be difficult to assert that the average first-time visitor is going to want to spend the same amount of time at Animal Kingdom and Magic Kingdom.

Realistically, that’s just not a good allocation of time for most people. This isn’t just our bias or personal preferences–there are stats to support it. For one thing, Animal Kingdom sees millions fewer annual guests than Magic Kingdom. For another thing, wait times show that Animal Kingdom crowds arrive late and leave early. (There’s a reason Animal Kingdom is the next park that’s earmarked for expansion.)

When it comes to Animal Kingdom, the ‘average’ guest is rolling up at around 10 am and leaving before 3 pm. The average first-timer can certainly spend more time at DAK, but you could easily arrive at opening (or better yet, for Early Entry) and leave fully satisfied at 1 pm, get to Magic Kingdom right at 2 pm, and still have a chance at the afternoon TRON Lightcycle virtual queue.

This is an illustrative example, and admittedly the most extreme one. We also favor splitting up both EPCOT and Disney’s Hollywood Studios into two half-days, but it’s much easier to fill an entire single day at them.

The salient point is that if you’re a first-timer with 4 days at Walt Disney World, you should spend at least 1.5 of those days at Magic Kingdom. Allocating the same number of days to both ‘kingdom’ parks is an inefficient use of time, and money is equally valuable (if not more so) to time for many people on vacation.

However you split up the rest of the time between EPCOT and Disney’s Hollywood Studios comes down to personal preference, and there are arguments for and against excessive Park Hopping. (It does “waste” time, but much of that time is spent on novel transportation systems like the Skyliner or FriendShip boats, which are some of the best non-attraction attractions in all of Walt Disney World!)

With that said, I realize this preference has been developed over a decade-plus as Annual Passholders, which gives us the luxury of Park Hopping and not worrying about ticket prices. (We just pay one obscenely high price once per year, and then “forget” about admission.) If I was budgeting for a family of 4 and comparing the cost of regular 4-Day Park Hopper tickets to the 4-Day Magic Ticket…the sticker shock and difference between the two options might have me changing my tune really quickly!

Planning a Walt Disney World trip? Learn about hotels on our Walt Disney World Hotels Reviews page. For where to eat, read our Walt Disney World Restaurant Reviews. To save money on tickets or determine which type to buy, read our Tips for Saving Money on Walt Disney World Tickets post. Our What to Pack for Disney Trips post takes a unique look at clever items to take. For what to do and when to do it, our Walt Disney World Ride Guides will help. For comprehensive advice, the best place to start is our Walt Disney World Trip Planning Guide for everything you need to know!

YOUR THOUGHTS

Will you be purchasing the 3-Day/3-Park or 4-Day/4-Park Magic Ticket? Do you think this is a good deal, or is it too restrictive in ‘forcing’ you to visit Animal Kingdom and EPCOT? If you’re a tourist, do the Magic Tickets appeal to you? Any questions we can help you answer? Hearing your feedback–even when you disagree with us–is both interesting to us and helpful to other readers, so please share your thoughts below in the comments!

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