Walt Disney World hikes parking from $22 to $25

Posted | Contributed by Jeff

The parking fee at Walt Disney World’s four theme parks has increased from $22 to $25. It's the second increase this year.

Read more from The Orlando Sentinel.

Proving that Six Flags REALLY hates poor people.

TheMillenniumRider's avatar

Season passes also saw an increase.

Vater's avatar

Anyone have any inside info that might confirm my theory that this was (at least in part) a result of the deal Disney made 2 months ago with the workers' union to raise starting wages incrementally each year until 2021?

TheMillenniumRider's avatar

I would imagine a new pricing structure was in the works long before 2 months ago. So either they anticipated the wage increases, or, coming soon: another price hike. :)

Raven-Phile's avatar

Considering that already had a decent price hike this year, and they raised the price of every item at the Food and Wine festival by a dollar or so literally overnight in the middle of the festival, I’m going to go out on a limb and say that this is likely tied to the min wage hike. It’s highly coincidental that the price of a Churro jumped from $4.50 to $6.25 just after all of that happened (or is it?)

Jeff's avatar

I don't think they're related at all. Let's be real, no price change in the last five years has had any negative impact on attendance. They did it because they can.

Jeff - Editor - CoasterBuzz.com - My Blog

If they had a long history of holding prices steady then maybe. But they don't. And as noted, they shouldn't. Premium product that is popular and commands a premium price. Most businesses sweat out increasing prices (even if its in response to cost increases). Isn't true of Disney though.

kpjb's avatar

They've been raising prices from admission to parking to food at least once a year for as long as I can remember. None of the others had any reasoning besides "let's make more money" (not that I'm saying that isn't a legit reason.) I don't see that this one is any different. They're also spending a couple bucks on Star Wars, Toy Story, Tron, Gondolas, new hotel, etc etc etc, so I'm sure it's more than just the couple extra bucks the french fry kid is making behind this.


Vater's avatar

kpjb said:

I'm sure it's more than just the couple extra bucks the french fry kid is making behind this.

Sure, no question...but...

Vater said:

(at least in part)

Jeff's avatar

Someone did the math, and relative to the billions spent on cap ex in the parks, the payroll increase is minor and is stepped over a few years anyway. There are 38k hourly union employees at WDW, and even if they were all working on the same day and going from $10 to $11 this year, the per caps are going to go up by at least $2 with all of the price increases. One-fourth of one park's attendance could cover that on any given day.

Jeff - Editor - CoasterBuzz.com - My Blog

Raven-Phile's avatar

kpjb said:
They've been raising prices from admission to parking to food at least once a year for as long as I can remember.

True, but this is the 2nd big price hike this year, and the first time I can remember them hiking everything mid-festival and changing signage overnight.

You have to pay for the new signage somehow

Interesting. Parking at Disneyland is $20.

Parking at Knott's Berry Farm is $19, which I thought was idiotic as it resulted in a long line. Of course I am not paying the $19 since I have my pass, but I have to wait in that long line of people who all have to get change. There was no waiting at the toll booth at Disneyland.

Of course my opinion is as always that the parking charge should be included with park admission in most parks, as depriving the customer of an unadvertised amount of cash before even getting to the ticket booth is a great way to set a fantastic first impression. Arbitrarily making that a long, slow moving line to collect that parking fee by charging some ridiculous amount that requires everybody to deal with change is an unnecessary operational bother. Why not include the desired parking per-cap in the admission price, offer premium parking that can be paid with a single bill ($1, $5, $10, $20) and watch traffic nightmares at park opening time disappear.....

--Dave Althoff, Jr.

    /X\        _      *** Respect rides. They do not respect you. ***
/XXX\ /X\ /X\_ _ /X\__ _ _ _____

When I worked entrance ops at Epcot, it was noticable how much quicker traffic moved when parking raised from $14 to $15

hambone's avatar

In this situation, I don't think cost should have a lot to do with how Disney prices their product. They should price in order to maximize revenue, based on the value their customers place on the goods or services. If Disney could have charged $25 for parking, but weren't because they didn't "need" it to cover their labor costs, then they were foolish for leaving money on the table. (I'm ignoring whether it alienates customers at the front door, as well as the effects of "Disney hates poor people" PR, since I think those are just the question of maximizing revenue viewed over a longer time frame.)

As for whether they should charge for parking, at a regional park I would think it's mostly correct that it doesn't matter whether the park builds it into the ticket price or charge a separate fee. At Disney World, however, I would think they want to discourage guests from doing a lot of driving around the property, to reduce both the size of parking lots they need and the traffic on their internal roads.

Last edited by hambone,

I'm pretty sure that once you pay for parking at WDW on any given day you can go to another park and use their lot for free by showing your ticket. I'm not 100% certain on that but I'm pretty sure I've done it before.

There used to be a pretty good hack to park free at WDW but I think it has been removed now. I made a lot of use out of a U-turn that was up near the TTC gas station.

Yes - the TTC parking hack is gone. The way around it now is to park at a resort and use the bus system.

And yes - if you pay once it is valid at all four parks all day.

Are there any resorts left that don't have a gate?

Jeff's avatar

No, they're all gated, but getting in isn't usually an issue. At peak times, they've literally looked up restaurant reservations, but I imagine you could say you were doing a boat rental or something. This was also at the Poly during construction when half the lot was closed, so that may be part of the situation.

I would imagine that half or less people actually pay for parking at the tolls, because on-site resort guests and passholders get in free. I don't actually know the ratio of off-site guests though.

Jeff - Editor - CoasterBuzz.com - My Blog

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