Has Disney World Become Too Expensive?

If you’re thinking about planning a trip to Disney World there are a lot of things you have to take into account like Park Pass reservations, the number of days you want to stay, Advanced Dining Reservations, and more.

I’m Going to Disney World!

But the one big thing that will factor into most of your decisions is…COST. There’s no denying that a trip to Disney World can be incredibly expensive.

Is Disney World just getting TOO expensive now? We’re sharing all of our thoughts here.

Things at Disney World are already expensive and we’ve seen some things getting even pricier — sometimes in big ways, sometimes in little ways.

Park Tickets

First, we’ll take a look at ticket prices. Back in 2015, a one-day ticket for Magic Kingdom was $99-105; it was $94-97 for the other three parks. In 2016, Disney began to price tickets by season — peak, regular, and value. Then, in 2018 Disney revised the system so that each calendar day was assigned a specific ticket price. That date-based pricing is essentially the system we’re familiar with now.

Spaceship Earth

Currently, the lowest 1-day ticket price for any park is $109. Depending on the day you go, tickets can be priced as high as $159. So while your highest ticket price for Magic Kingdom in 2015 was $105, the highest price 6 years later is more than $50 over that — a 34% increase in just six years.


Are ticket prices going to increase again? We anticipate there will be more increases in the future, but none have been announced yet. Disney has already released their ticket prices for 2022, and technically the range of prices ($109-$159) has not changed. But we did notice that many days have been placed in higher categories, meaning that a date which may have been priced at $139 this year may be priced at $145 in 2022.

What this means is that your average trip may cost you more in 2022 than it cost you in 2021 based on ticket price alone.

Big Thunder Mountain Railroad

Since we’re talking about whether Disney is too expensive let’s price out a sample trip for 2022 just to see what it would cost for tickets. We’ll take a family of 2 adults and 2 kids (ages 9 and under) planning to visit during the summer of 2022 for a weekend trip. We’ll look at July 15th through the 17th, 2022.

For tickets we’ll look for 3-day tickets for each of them with no Park Hopping abilities so we don’t add on that extra cost. Tickets alone for this trip are estimated at $1,538.80.


That is pretty pricey. We couldn’t search all the way into July of 2022 for Universal Orlando, but a weekend trip similar to this with 3-day tickets granting the family access to Universal Orlando’s two main theme parks in March of 2022 is priced at $1,163.96. That puts Disney price just 25% over Universal’s (and you get access to an additional Park over your three days).

For comparison, you can get a 4 park ticket with unlimited visits over 14 days to SeaWorld Orlando, Aquatica Orlando, Busch Gardens Tampa Bay, and Adventure Island Tampa Bay for the family of 4 for $799.96.


Now let’s take a look at hotel pricing. The price for Disney World’s Resort hotels has gone up over the past several years as well. If you’re looking for a room in Disney World priced at under $100 per night these days, you might have a lot of trouble finding one. You very likely will not find one.

For our proposed trip, the cheapest “room” available is at the Campsites at Disney’s Fort Wilderness Resort — priced at $123 a night just for a tent or pop-up campsite.


The most expensive room (based on just looking at Disney’s front page, not taking special suites or anything like that into consideration) was priced at $712 per night at Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort and Spa.

For our trip, we’ll stick with the cheapest Resort that isn’t a campsite — that’s All-Star Movies, Music, or Sports for $197 per night. The total comes out to around $447.20 for the entire hotel stay (2 night, 3 day trip).

All-Star Movies Resort

If you book a stay at other nearby hotels, you could save a pretty good amount in comparison to these prices Disney is showing. And if you look at hotels that are a bit further away from the park, look into renting an Airbnb, or search for other deals, you could nab substantial savings. For example, we took a look at Expedia.com and found some hotels with 3 star ratings or above for under $100 per night. Of course, we can’t speak to how those hotels compare to staying in a Disney hotel in terms of cleanliness, customer service, etc., and that’s all something that you have to keep in mind.


Plus, staying off property has its own set of drawbacks. When picking the right hotel you do have to consider your budget, but you also need to consider what perks you need or want, like free transportation to the parks, Early Theme Park Entry, and other things like that. While you may be able to find cheaper accommodations elsewhere, the benefits that the Disney World hotels offer may make their cost worth it for you. Ultimately, that’s something you have to look at and decide based on the needs of your group.

Click here to see what our readers said were some of the best hotels in Disney World.


Next, we’ll look at one of the most important (and fun) parts of any Disney trip — the delicious food! While a lot of the food in Disney World is tasty, it can be expensive. Assuming you eat all of your meals and snacks somewhere in the parks, you’re looking at some serious costs.

Let’s say our family of 4 only eats at Quick Service spots throughout their trip — they’re still looking at a cost of about $12-15 (sometimes less, sometimes more) per adult meal and about $7-9 (again, prices can vary) for each kid meal.

Pecos Bill’s

At Cosmic Ray’s Starlight Cafe, for example, an adult ⅓ angus cheeseburger is $10.99 and comes with your choice of side. Kids’ chicken strips will set you back $7.49. A dessert like the Cheshire Cafe Cat Tail is $5.49. And if you add on a fountain beverage that’s an additional $3.99. Considering you can typically buy an entire 2L bottle of soda for under $3, that’s pretty pricey.

Sometimes Chicken Nuggets and Fries is ALL You Need!

Even if the family sticks to something like $14 per meal per adult ($28 per meal for 2 adults) and $8 per meal per kid ($16 per meal for 2 kids), for a family of 4 that’s $44 per meal. Multiply that by 3 meals a day and that’s $132 a day, not including the cost for snacks or extras like coffee. Multiply that by 3 days and it’s $396. We’ll round up to $400 and add on $40 for snacks to bring it to a total of around $440 total for food.

Trio Platter and Minnie Mouse Lava Cookie

And again, this is only looking at eating at Quick Service spots throughout the trip. If you add in character dining meals, Table Service meals, more snacks, etc. then the estimated cost could be significantly more.

We’ve also seen food prices increase quite a bit lately throughout Disney World. While most of the increases are $1-2 dollars or so, that can add up across a trip that lasts multiple days with multiple family members.

Click here to see the small price increases that made a big difference in Disney World this year.


No matter how hard you try, it might be impossible (or nearly impossible) to stop yourself from getting SOMETHING in Disney World to bring home, even if it’s something small. And with kiddos, the chance that you’ll go an entire vacation without buying (or being tempted to buy) a souvenir may be very small.

Studded Mickey Ears

Let’s say our family sets a tight budget — $25 per day for the entire family, or a total of $75 for the entire trip. Again, for 4 people that might not be realistic at all. Just one set of Minnie ears will typically cost you $29.99 or more. And a single spirit jersey will blow nearly the entire merchandise budget for the entire family. For our imaginary family, we’ll set the merchandise budget at around $125 for the trip — that gives each person the chance to get something around $31 or so.

Other Costs

Of course, there are other costs to consider too. You’ll need to consider the cost for things like flights or gas (if you’re driving to Disney World), rental car costs, parking fees, hotel fees, and costs for rideshare services if you intend to use them. Those things can all add up so it’s important that you factor those into your budget.

All Together

All together the cost for this proposed 2022 trip for our family of 4 is as follows:

  • Tickets: $1,538.80
  • Hotel: $447.20
  • Food: $440
  • Merchandise: $125

That brings us to a total of $2,551.

Again, this doesn’t include Table Service meals, flights, a rental car, etc. It also doesn’t include tickets with the ability to Park Hop or a stay at a pricier hotel. Additionally, keep in mind that this trip is only for 2 nights and 3 days. An actual trip to Disney World for many families may last significantly longer than that.

Tree of Life

This trip was priced for July of 2022. As we mentioned above, prices can vary depending on the days you choose to visit Disney World.

Realistically, with more included costs, Table Service options, a more expensive hotel, more food, etc. this trip is/could be closer to $3,000-$5,000 (or more).

Average Household Income

According to the Census data from the US Government, the median household income in 2019 was $68,703. That actually marked an increase of 6.8 percent from the median household income in 2018, which was $64,324.

But that is the median. Throughout the US there will be people who make much more than that and many more people who make much less. We also have to note that this data is for 2019. Things changed dramatically in the US in 2020 due to the global pandemic and affected many people’s jobs.

Things Have Changed

For now, though, we’ll use the 2019 figures and round it to an even $69,000. For a trip to Disney World that costs $2,551, that represents 3.7% of the family’s entire income for the year. Using the more realistic figure of $3,000-$5,000, that represents 4.35 to 7.25% of that family’s entire income for the year.

So while this type of Disney trip would not be something like 50% of the median income, even 4-7% can be a lot considering it’s just a 2 night, 3 day trip. And keep in mind that trips could cost much more depending on the length of the stay, number of people in the family, type of hotel the family stays in, etc.

Slinky Dog Dash

The price can be difficult for some to come to terms with when compared to other potential trips. At the time we searched, you could book a 3-night cruise on Royal Caribbean from Port Canaveral for the same time period in 2022 for $2,047.80. That’s actually not significantly less than our estimated trip but it does include an additional night and potentially more food options. Some people might opt for something like that as opposed to a Disney trip if they prefer the all-inclusive nature of the cruise trip and, after making all of the calculations, if they determine that it could end up saving them money.

And there are even cheaper vacation options available on other cruise lines or at other destinations. But the fact remains that none of those other vacation destinations are Disney World. Ultimately, for a trip to Disney World guests pay a high price for many reasons, some of which are all of the joy, customer service, etc. that come with the Disney name.


There’s no denying that Disney world IS expensive, and there’s no denying that it is getting MORE expensive, sometimes in big ways, sometimes in little ones.

Overall, has a trip to Disney World become too expensive? We’d love to hear your thoughts based on our sample trip costs and on the actual costs of your own trips. Tell us what you think in the comments.

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73 Replies to “Has Disney World Become Too Expensive?”

  1. We’ve decided to go one more time and then we’re selling our DVC at Saratoga Springs. It’s gotten too expensive and the “magic” has been significantly reduced. It used to be you could go to Disney and “escape” from the real world, but no more. The cast members no longer care about making your experience magical, the rides and amenities are starting to feel run down, and it’s weird to see a crowded park and so many closed locations like the snack stands and the like. During our last visit we must have encountered at least one ride a day breaking down while we were in line and it just feels like Disney is taking a very cheap approach to a very expensive experience. It’s not worth the money anymore and the magic is gone.

  2. Disney is emblematic of corporate greed. It won’t stop until we make it stop by not feeding into it. Paycheck himself said that as long as people are willing to pay the exorbitant prices they will keep pushing until people won’t. We are DVC members; we’re selling our points and canceled all future trips. We used to go twice a year before. Even if the prices go down, which they won’t, WDW will never be the same. There’s no pride in the parks or creativity anymore. You pay a premium price to walk around a park with broken down rides, dirty areas and disgruntled cast members and guests. The current management has destroyed a wonderful, magical place that never will be again.

  3. I’ve just priced up a holiday from the UK for 2 adults and 1 teen (15) and it’s coming in at around £10000 (at the exchange rate atm that’s @$20000) for flights and a Port Orleans stay. We’ve stayed at the Animal Kingdom Lodge for half that 5 years ago. So yes, it’s getting ridiculous. That being said we are going to sacrifice a European holiday next year in order to afford a Disney trip the year after. Also do not approve of having to ‘book’ each day in the park or pay to fast pass rides. Where is the spontaneity of waking up and wondering where we are going today? I think our next trip will probably be our last which breaks my heart.

  4. Yes. Disney is extremely overpriced, even for Disney quality. The parks have become elitist and have destroyed Walt’s true intent.

  5. Of course. However, that won’t stop me from going. It just means I have to plan more and go less often. I recently retired and have one trip planned for late September/ Early October and may again go in February/March. However, that may be the last time for a while. There are other places to see. Wife gets to pick the next vacation spot. LOL

  6. Good on you for ONLY spending $125 in merch! We buy gift cards at $25 increments nearly any time we go grocery shopping to prepare for our yearly trip. For a family of 3 we spent between $3-$4k this past year.

    But of course costs are going up…they are going up everywhere! Folks need to start getting paid more, but that’s another topic for a different comment section 🙂

  7. Disney is really starting to over price its self, I am going in August with my family and the cost from moving after the pandemic is awful we have now paid £12,500. its sad really as this will be my grandchildren’s first time and most probably there last due to the prices always going up.
    I think of when I used to watch Walt talk about his dream of a magical place and now think that he would be turning in his grave at the prices and how many people can’t afford to take there families now for holidays and may never be able to, so so sad.

  8. My husband and I agree that it has become to expensive. We were going to plan a Christmas/30th Wedding anniversary trip for the end of this year. We have always wanted to stay at Wilderness Lodge for Christmas. We figures a split stay would save some money. We looked at Dec 23 to Jan 3; moving to POFQ on the 26th. With Tickets and the two resorts, it was over $11K. This was for a standard room at Wilderness Lodge. Both my husband & I are retired. It would have been a trip for the two of us and my daughter & granddaughter. I guess we will have to save up for our 35th anniversary instead.
    My daughter couldn’t believe what she paid for lunch from ABC Commissary. 4 Uncrustables, 2 fries, 2 apple juices – over $35. For what they charged for 1 uncrustable, she could buy a box in Walmart.
    I also don’t like the way they are over pricing merchandise – especially clothing. We like to go in at a later time — Not Rope Drop. So if we have to get up to make reservations for rides at 7am. We won’t be using Genie+. You are not paying out for everything. No more fastpasses – paid Genie+. No more free resort parking- paid resort parking. No clothing at reasonable prices – everything overpriced. All the perks of staying at an onsite resort are basically gone. Then recently seeing how many rides have been down for one reason or another. Also Disney NOT cracking down on the eBay resellers. They know they can go after them through eBay. Instead they go after the little daycare centers who use their characters on their walls. There are thousands of people making a profit off of items they got at Disney by working the system. I’ve read stories about meals not being up to par for the cost. I really do not know when we will be able to go as a full family again. I am glad that we took our granddaughter for her first trip in 2004. She has been with my daughter & family friends since for a trip. On top of the cost of the Disney trip itself (which did not include meals & parking); we have to pay for someone to take care of our cats. So there is another couple hundred dollars on top of everything els.

  9. Disney has definitely gotten too expensive, but for me the biggest change has been the marketable difference in overall quality and experience. The average family used to be able to spend their hard earned money and feel like they were getting something special for their dollar. Not so much anymore. The quality of everything from food to employee has taken a nose dive since my first Disney trip over 30 years ago. I’m not sure if COVID has something to do with it, or people are just angrier about everything these days, but there is a definite change in the attitude of many, not all, of Disney’s cast members. The feeling that they will bend over backwards so that you have the best experience possible is gone. This along with the A LA cart, pay as you go for everything, mentality is disappointing. Add in no more magic express, the confusing Geni plus, and any number of other things and for this family the magic is all but gone. We are going over Easter because we promised the kids, but I feel like this will be our last trip for quite awhile.

  10. Yes. Yes it has become unaffordable.

    But it’s not JUST that it’s become unaffordable. The value for a Disney vacation has gone away along with the magic. They charge you exponentially more for less at every turn. For example: I was physically unable to go to the parks for a number of years when I priced the Incredipass to get my FLAP back the price had nearly tripled in five years! That’s insane! That’s not counting Lightning lane or PhotoPass, they’ve taken away the Fl resident discount, they’re charging for magic bands, the quality and in stay experience has been steadily declining for years, the rooms are dirty, the food isn’t worth what you’re paying for it and now they want to cut portion sizes to save money? To top it off the machinery isn’t being maintained and most of the “New” offerings are the laziest pretense of the quality and innovation you could expect of imagineering in the past. Disney is no longer competitive. It’s just better to take your money and go to Universal, or Legoland, or wherever you want to go. Vote with your wallet. For the price of a Disney vacation you can have a much more personally valuable experience for a fraction of the cost.

  11. Our original plan was to do Universal. We thought, let’s add in a few Disney days. I wish I hadn’t. Our tickets for 3 day Base are over $1600. Lodging is extremely expensive and now only the Deluxe resort gets extended evening hours, only two days a week! Parking Fees, no Magical Express and no Fastpasses. Disney lost the Magic and this will be our last trip for many many years to come and we haven’t even gone yet. If my kids weren’t already excited I would cut it out completely.

  12. The cost has gotten worse but what hasn’t, the problem I see is the hidden cost are rising or not available to the average person. Paying for fast Passes and not even the best rides meals are expensive but such an important part of a MAGICAL trip, reservations are not available to a common family. Stay on site or forget those reservations! Additional payments after ticketing went away with etickets! Everything is better for Tom Brady but not for Rom Jones at the end of the block looking for that memorable family trip. Shame that we miss getting families what Walt built the park for!

  13. Disney has become much too expensive for me. I used to go every year for 5 days, staying on property. I could do that again if the tickets weren’t so expensive. I was just there in August, and will not be back for quite a while. It’s harder to afford when you’re on Social Security. It makes me sad to think I cannot afford to be at the “happiest place on earth” anymore.

  14. Yes, definitely too expensive. We are going in December with some of our kids and grandkids because we wanted the grandkids to experience Disney. This is probably our last trip for quite some time. We originally planned in our retirement years to go every year, but not now. The expense is just part of the problems we find. The planning is very difficult and we have already been disappointed in trying to get some dining reservations, that we tried to book on the first day that we could. The penny pinching that is now “The Disney Way” is also a turn off. Parking, Magic Bands, the new Genie and Genie+ are all additional add ons. When will it stop? This is one Disney Family that will not be returning for several years, when they could have had us back every year!

  15. If Walt was still alive he would be so upset that his name is on it because he wanted to create a place for the whole average family could enjoy – not just rich families. It costs several mortgage payments to take a family to it now!! He would change it so an average earning family could afford to go or start a new company!!

    1. I totally agree. I promised my Grandchildren my husband and I would take them next year. Because of all these price hikes we’ll now have to go into our retirement savings to afford to take my two grandkids for the promised special vacation. So sad its come to that.

  16. Yes – don’t think we’ll be coming again, which makes me very sad. Too expensive to come from the UK now and all the changes make it more like a route march than a holiday

  17. It really has gotten too expense for the original target guests…families. My in laws knew the Disneys growing up and this is definitely not what Walt Disney had in mind. We love WDW. It is magical but has gotten to expensive to visit unless you are a FL and can invest in an annual pass situation.

  18. I feel that I was extremely lucky to have been able to take my children to Disney World when they were small I was a young widow but was still able to afford to make several trips Ironically enough my daughters husband also died but never would she be able to afford to take her children at the prices that are changed at the park today It’s a shame they will miss out on all the magic, maybe someday I can watch them take their children

  19. Too expensive. Now, you pay for everything that Disney can think of.
    Disney is getting to complicated a trip to plan. It isn’t fun anymore.
    We were going in December and now thinking of canceling our trip.
    It’s become a money grab.

  20. I really feel that Disney does not want middle-class working families as customers. I used to resent this because I want to share the same joys that I had when I was young with my kids and one day maybe even grandkids. But I have come to realize that we have not been to Disney, because of the cost, in over 5 years, and we are just fine. The greedy Disney Corporation does not define our happiness. The world is a big, beautiful place. Go out and explore it.

  21. Reserved my hotel for 7 nights and flight from Montreal, Canada for July 2022. Have not reserved my tickets yet. Last time was at WDW was in March 2011. Promised our 2 grandkids we would bring them when they were 10 years old. OMG, the prices have skyrocketed. But a promise is a promise, right?
    Just hoping that we can get on all the rides the kids want to do.
    With the currency exchange (1.3975) this morning. Will most definitely be our last visit unless we win at the lottery.

  22. Disney is getting too expensive. We are taking our sons and their families (there will be 10 of us) for our 50th Anniversary Celebration in June 2022 (we were there on our honeymoon in 1972). I am looking at $20,000 for everything. We have rooms at the Caribbean Resort to be close to the new skyline. I am extremely disappointed that we are paying $20/day/vehicle for parking. I just don’t think DW should be charging us to park when we stay at a DW resort! All of these extra costs that we have not had to pay in the past are not what Walt Disney had in mind, I would think. Adding in all the extras, yes, it is too expensive and you will loose potential return business because of that and the rise in costs. We love WDW and are looking forward to the trip but am keeping tally of the costs as well.

  23. Disney World has indeed gotten way too expensive! We’ve been going 1-2 times a years most years since 1998. The introduction of My Disney Experience where you have to plan your entire trip in advance took away the spontaneity of our vacation; we liked to plan our activities only a day or two in advance once we arrived. It also made the standby lines as long as they were before Fast Passes were introduced. Dumbing down EPCOT is turning it into Magic Kingdom so there it not much there we want to do anymore, except eat at the Food & Wine Festival. (Flights of Wonder at Animal Kingdom used to be wonderful and now we don’t even want to go. We loved the Magic of Animation and it was reduced to almost nothing years ago.) Having ticket prices set by the specific day of the year, having to pay to park at a hotel (but busses are still free), expecting you to have a smart phone when visiting the parks, and increasing prices on EVERYTHING has really put me off. The annual passholder discounts on hotels became almost non-existent; the “book your next trip before you leave this trip” discount didn’t seem to exist if you wanted to return during the EPCOT Food & Wine Festival. I wasn’t sure if we would ever return, and that was before Genie.

  24. Absolutely. It feels like they’re targeting wealthy people. It makes me sad to think Walt’s legacy is out of reach for many people. 🙁

  25. Getting too expensive is an understatement.
    My wife and I made reservations a few months ago to visit in October for the 50th Anniversary as Oct 4th is OUR 50th Anniversary as well….
    We had been going since the mid 70’s. Many times taking other family members, my wifes parents, our nieces and nephews, and our children on us. Prices were manageable.
    It was somewhat exciting when we talked to the agent extensively and decided the various options for tickets, places to stay, etc.
    Finally, with confirmation in hand, reality started to set in.
    I still have our first ticket books that cost 9.00.
    Yes, we wanted to stay in a ‘better’ middle of the road place on site since this was special trip. And I can’t say that having to make soooo many advance reservations and commitments for the parks and dining and passes, etc., didn’t weigh heavily on our minds.
    We want to go to a park when WE wanted to visit and not have to plan so far ahead.
    We wanted a trip that would be relaxing and not have to schedule so much.
    After much soul searching, discussion, estimating and being in the same state as
    Gov DeSantis, we decided we couldn’t afford the almost $5000.00 cost.
    So, we cancelled our trip.

  26. Yes Disney is becoming too expensive. We used to go every year because they had the never expired tickets. So we could purchase our tickets at a lower cost because we would buy 10 day nonexpiring and if we didn’t use them we saved them to come back the next year. We never stayed on property but always dreamed we would some day. But to ne able to go once a year, it was worth the sacrifice of not staying on property. Now the ticket prices are so high that we about wvery two years. We are huge family of Disney lovers and I hate that in order to go we have to use all our vacation money for 2 years to go.

  27. To put the expense in perspective- My first vacation to Disney (with my kids) in 2008, there was five of us, we stayed at the Port Orleans Riverside with a dining plan and 8 days park tickets with hopper and water parks, and flights–cost a little over $2600. This is now $5630 WITHOUT dining and flights!!

    The next trip we went crazy and went to the Poly for 11 nights! This was also with all of the above but the tickets were for 10 days. That price…yes, dining and flights too….was a little more than $5600. This trip MINUS dining and air is now a little over $12,000!!!! WOW!!

    So, if you think that this is crazy, you are correct. We went a few other times, but you get the picture. These were major splurge trips but we had food and Magical Express….we had extra evening hours until 2am….We had so very many things that made it an awesome trip and made us spend that money. We even had Fastpasses!

    So, we live with those memories and it makes us so very, very sad to see what has happened to make it not worth it. Instead of the Poly–we could actually go to Polynesia or Hawaii and not spend nearly that amount. The more we resist the Disney prices—they will change. It’s just that people don’t seem to be resisting. Anyway. I did calculate all of my prices on the Disney site and I do still have my past trip receipts to prove the prices we paid in 2008 and 2010…also trips in 2011, 2012…2014…you get the point:)

  28. It is getting too expensive, even to those who are members of the DVC. An average family cannot afford to vacation there.The price of meals, even using quick service, are quite . The VIP’s at WDW are making great money with their stocks. Perhaps they could tighten their money belts and give the averagemjoe a break.

  29. The potential of charging for fast pass would be the final straw for me. It is harder to take my family with the higher costs but we go when we can – every couple of years now. But I won’t wait over an hour for an attraction. If you have to pay for fast passes, it could essentially double the cost of a daily ticket – call it what you want. I don’t go to Disney to stand in line all day and wouldn’t be able to afford the potentially significant additional cost.

  30. It’s expensive – but looking at past trips I’ve taken, I don’t really see it as that expensive. I was there for the first time in June of 2021, and while I feel I didn’t get the full value out of the tickets due to a lack of shows and nighttime entertainment (I don’t handle thrill rides) it was the best vacation my wife and I have ever had.

    We booked a trip for November of 2022 at Caribbean for 6 nights with 5 day tickets and it came out to be $3600. That’s not cheap by any means, but it doesn’t feel like a terrible value either. Our honeymoon, which consisted of visiting several things that were free to get into, cost nearly that much.

    I actually didn’t think the quick service food was that expensive either – we payed $13 for fish and chips in EPCOT and it was a way better value (and cheaper) than most fish and chips we can get around here. I’ve been to Hersheypark and places like the museums in Washington DC and major league baseball games and their food pricing is absolutely outrageous compared to what I encountered in Disney.

    Merchandise is a little all over the board price wise, but for the most part I found it to be relatively in line with most other theme parks and tourist attractions I’ve visited.

    Granted, I don’t know how it was before. I wasn’t lucky enough to ever be part of a group that got to go there, and my parents could never afford to take me. Frankly, the fact my parents couldn’t afford to take me even back in the 90’s and early 2000’s meant I was kind of surprised when I actually finally got to go and we looked into booking another trip.

    Should it be cheaper? Yes. Does it feel cost prohibitive to me based on other vacation experiences I’ve had? Honestly, no.

  31. absolutely has gotten to be too expensive! One additional expense I didn’t seem to notice in your blog was the bus situation from the airport to the hotel. Starting 2022 a new bus system called Mears will begin instead of Magic Express. They will charge $17 per adult one way and $13.50 per child one way to take you from the airport to your hotel. That will be an additional $227 for my family to arrive at the airport and begin my Disney trip. That’s not even the tip of the iceberg when you consider the airfare to take seven. It is just unbelievable and I agree that Walt would be turning over in his grave. As a grandparent of six who loved to take their grandchildren to Disney, I do not believe it will be possible for our family after next year😥

  32. Disney has gotten more expensive over the years , and somehow the patrons have gotten ruder and so has some of the staff…

  33. I have been to DW over the years and I cannot believe how expensive it is in 2021. I bought a 4 day tickets pass for 3 and cost was $1500.00. I think it is outrageous. Also the cost of “merry Christmas” nights are just too much for my pocket. Last visit for us. We will stick to cruising with Norwegian Cruise line all inclusive.

  34. Covid has probably slammed Disney’s profits but the reduction in “on property” perks and the seemingly constant increase in prices means that I’m spending more time thinking about the costs than anticipating the holiday. It feels like someone at Disney has decided to put profits ahead of the overall guest experience that brought us back again and again over almost 3 decades. We travel from the UK and have arranged a 2 week family break every 4 years or so since 1994, usually staying at the Poly. Our next trip is booked for 2022 but I can’t help wondering if it will be our last.

    1. I agree – we’re also from the UK and have stayed at Port Orleans Riverside on 7 occasions since 1999, the last time being 2018. It’s now so expensive to come over from the UK. I so wanted to come over for the 50th anniversary but it’s not going to happen. I also don’t like the park reservation system, which looks like it’s going to be staying around, as it removes any spontaneity. Our first trip was run with military precision but now that we’ve been so many times and know what’s what, I can’t go back to that.
      Enjoy your trip next year

    2. UK here too and it is definitely getting too expensive.

      I went for the first time when I was 22 in 2003 with my now wife and it cost us about £3500 in total including food etc for 2 weeks off property. We then booked a trip in September 2004 which was even cheaper as we booked it a week before going as we got a good deal, but then got hit by a hurricane 😂. We then went in 2006 off property, 2008 for our honeymoon at the Animal Kingdom Lodge and finally in 2016 with our now 10 year old daughter at the Animal Kingdom Lodge. Each time it has become much more expensive and not just because we have stayed at the AKL the past 3 times.

      I spend a lot of time making sure I book the best holiday I can and at the best possible prices, but with Florida this is becoming impossible.

      We have booked an 18 night trip in July/August 2022 as we now have another little lady who we want to experience the magic, but this could be the last trip we do due to costs and wanting to move house and actually have some money to live if we get to retirement age.

      We have done it the best we can and will spend 5 nights on International Drive, including a night at a Universal hotel to get 2 days Express Pass as it is so much cheaper than buying that separately for 2 days 🤷‍♂️. We are going to Discovery Cove and SeaWorld too before then staying at the Animal Kingdom Lodge for 13 nights.

      With everything included plus spending money of about $4,500 the total price is a scary £19,500 and that is in Pounds Sterling and not Dollars so with the exchange rate it would be about $26,000, hence the unlikely to do it again bit.

      I priced up doing it the cheapest way possible offsite for the same number of nights but that was coming in at about £14,500, plus due to a couple of issues we had the last time we went, Disney asked us to contact them the next time we booked a holiday as they would offer some extras FOC, so we have a Savannah View but are only paying for a standard view room, otherwise it would have been another £2000+ on top 😯.

  35. Absolutely too expensive. It’s out of reach for normal people – or you have to save for years to save enough to go

  36. We went once a year early December for just 5 days flying from NY for over 20 years…as just two of us ….before that as family of 5 much less often …but now? No parades, many restaurants not open, no live shows like Fantasmic, etc and yet the prices are increasing faster than the rate of inflation. This is not what Walt wanted….this new guy only seems to care about bottom line not what brings guests pleasure. Orchestra at Floridian? Gone….other live performers? Gone. Daily Mousekeeping? Gone. We continued to go ever December as he spent over 6 years battling cancer…now just me in fixed income paying cancer and funeral bills. Love Disney but just not sure it is financially possible anymore.

  37. Funny story…my first trip to Disneyland was way back in 1959!
    We drove from Arizona to Anaheim.
    Spent the night in a small hotel close to Disneyland for $19!
    Next morning we drove into the parking lot and stopped at the “Ticket Booth”.
    The cast member stated it would be 25 cents, to which my Dad replied, “for the four of us for all day in the park, that’s GREAT!”
    The cast member then replied, “no, it’s 25 cents to park your car, the ticket booths are over there!”
    My Dad then didn’t think it was so great!
    True story!
    Having previously visited both Disneyland & Walt Disney World literally 100’s of times in the ensuing 62 years since my first trip, including many years of having Annual Passes to both Disneyland & Disney World, my wife and I now are both 75 years old, retired and living on a fixed income, and sadly, can no longer afford to visit either of our two favorite places in the whole world.
    Walt is spinning in his grave!

  38. I had wanted to bring my grandchildren for 5 days and with cheap air costing 1,000.00 the trip with staying in the park was going to be over$145,000.00 and that was at a low inside hotel. It really was sad to disappoint my grandchildren but that is ridiculous!

  39. I have been going to WDW since 1975. Admittedly a Disney fan-attic, became DVC members in 1993. I always admired the Disney organization for their high standards and quality of the total experience, which is why I didn’t question spending the money on our frequent visits. Recent moves make me question if perhaps their pricing on everything is exceeding their value. The pandemic and recent management changes have pulled the curtain on the differences between what Walt had intended and corporate greed. Yes, Disney lost a lot of revenue because of closure, but it appears to me that because of unreasonable pricing increases – paying more for less – they just announced a profit for the first time since shutting down the parks. That’s the impact of putting a finance guy “in charge”. There were always reports of some attractions being down for maintenance but never to the degree they are now. Days ago there were reports of 30+ rides closed on the same day. Clearly they are no longer maintaining the parks like they used to. Never once have they charged less for what they can’t deliver. We recently sold half of our DVC points and honestly don’t know how long we will keep the rest. The Disney organization today is unrecognizable to those of us who grew up with them. I’m glad I knew them when they were good. A real disappointment and it’s a hard thing for me to admit since I was always such a fan.

  40. It’s not only expensive, it’s the crowds. While we haven’t been there since Jan 2020, but the last few times there were just too many people. If you didn’t have fast passes you just couldn’t get on some rides. It is just too much stress and work and expense and not enough magic anymore…

    1. Alice- I’m with you. It’s just not magic anymore. I can deal with the cost for an occasional visit, but the crowds are too much. Also many of the special places (Disneyland Antique Store, Tahitian Terrace) that had products not tied to the latest movies have gone away years ago. I went to DW with my son, and the only trinket we bought was an item in one of the Epcot countries, since we kept seeing the same products EVERYWHERE.

  41. Time to go to other family friendly theme parks like Silver Dollar City in Branson, MO.

    No Mickey but you don’t have to sell an arm and a leg to spend a week there.

  42. There is no question that Disney is too expensive. $18 just to park your car at one of their hotels in their empty lots is ridiculous and an example of how they continue to nickel and dime their guests. Now that they have a merchandiser in as CEO, things are going to get even more expensive. The only way it’s going to change is for people to stop spending their money there. Revenues dropped after their last merchandiser CEO. Hopefully you’ll happen again this time.

  43. Somehow, people are still going to Disney World. LOTS of people. Every day. Huge crowds. These people don’t look like millionaires to me. Annual passes, counter service meals, cheap flights can add up to a reasonably priced vacation. A Disney vacation is like no other. It’s magical. And affordable to many many people-as evidenced by enormous crowds. Daily. As Disney increases their profits, they add more attractions and entertainment back to the mix. I think Walt would understand and approve.

  44. It saddens me to know that many of today’s children will not get to experience the magic of a Disney World vacation because their family simple can not afford it. A friend said to me many years ago after his first trip to Disney World, “every child should get to experience Disney World at least once in their lifetime. What a wonderful world it would be.” Sadly this won’t happen. Being a senior, my trips are now limited due to the cost. I just hope for a few trips with my youngest grandchild before I have to sell my house for the money to make the trip!

  45. it is way too expensive now mcmcp is 190$ omg i thought walt made disney for the parents to bring their kids for a nice day out this is way outta the park now its so sad and not to mention the park reservations we are on vacation i dont want my vaca planned like the rest of my scheduled life its vacation after all sad disney fan

  46. Yes…the value for the price certainly isn’t not there as it used to be. As a DVC me,bet we have not bought park tickets for the last few years. Having do e that we have had resort only stays, but now those are becoming tarnished as we feel EVERYTHING on property is way overpriced. We are consider selling because of it. The thing isn’t that new guests that have not been going for years and don’t t know how it was… think it is just fine to pay a lot more for offerings, food, etc.

    A good example is the absolutely CRAZY pricing for the upcoming Mickey Christmas time,e R.M. hours event. Everyone has a breaking point and sadly I think a lot of folks will say see ya Mickey… but unfortunately the unknowing newbies will know no better and accept it.

    1. Exactly what I have been saying for years. I was a 3 to 4 times a year visitor. Mom bought in to DVC back in 1993 because you got great treatment for the extra you paid. Over the years, the prices keep going up and services keep going down. Unfortunate, folks going for their 1st trip don’t know how it was so they think its worth the money. Mom has started seriously speaking of selling her membership. Far too expensive and far too many restrictions. My family likes getting up and deciding what to do that day. Fadtpassrs dictate some of this, but only for the ones who are scheduled. We postponed our annual trip to 2022 hoping some would end but it’s not looking likely.

  47. Yes Disney is a magical place no doubt. We used to go there twice a year for my wife and two children. After seeing the prices rising ever so high, it seems that the only reason is greed from a billion dollar corporation. The money obviously doesn’t go to the employees on site. Making it only for people who can highly afford it, is not was what Walt Disney had in mind.

  48. Disney as a whole is expensive – but we all know that going in and it’s to be expected at this point.

    My biggest gripe regarding Disney pricing is the continued discounts Florida residents continue to receive.

    If you want to discount Florida resident tickets during off season months as a way to entice attendance then fine, so be it, but it’s frustrating to walk around the parks in the summer months and spring break knowing I just paid nearly twice as much for my entrance than others.

    These residents already don’t have to absorb as high as travel costs or even lodging in some cases, yet they are the ones saving all the money? They already have.

  49. It is WAY to expensive. But I have gone every year for two weeks since 1979 and am a gluten for punishment. Me and my family will continue to go and eat peanut butter and jelly all year to make it work. We may have a small addiction problem 🤔🤷🏻😁

    1. Disney is way too expensive on everything hotels, food,parking. As far as food goes if you’re lucky enough to get a reservation to a nice restaurant because the book them 6 months in advance. I have a granddaughter that is autistic and they really didn’t do nothing to help us out. Autistic people can’t weight for an hour or two to get on a ride they will have a breakdown. As far as parking there it used to be $.50 now it’s way out of sight. For the cruise ships you can go on a cruise for two weeks on what they want for just one week.I will never go back there.

  50. It is way too expensive now. I don’t plan on returning anytime in the near future for a few reasons but cost is near the top of my list.

  51. I keep a file on every vacation I’ve ever taken (cruises, international travel, WDW, etc.)
    After booking my 63 trip to WDW, I started looking through the files of past WDW trips.
    After seeing what I paid for tickets, hotels, and food in the past, I cancelled trip 63 and
    probably won’t ever go back. Corporate Disney is constantly on the hunt for new ways to nickel
    and dime every guest and keeping up with these additional costs is near impossible. If they
    could bring Walt back, I think a lot of Disney Executives would be looking for new jobs.
    Sorry, you won’t be seeing anymore of my money…

  52. Absolutely! Disney left the dreams of Millions behind when it buried Walt and the dollar sign became the CEO’s Grred
    Surprised they don’t encourage you sign your house away to them yet.

  53. Is WDW too expensive? In a word, “Yes!” Way too expensive. The smart second question I would answer is “will I still return to WDW?” In a word, “Yes!” That being possibly my last time though as I want to take my grandson to WDW one time. I always thought it was a “right of passage.” (Not for grandson, but for Grandparents!) 😉

  54. I am also a senior. I love WDW so much I am willing to sacrifice for my trips! For Birthdays, Christmas and Mother’s Day my children get me Disney Gift Card(s). I use this for all my food and souvenirs. I do not eat out, or go on mini vacations, and heaven forbid I no longer get my coffee at Starbucks (sorry Molly). I plan at the 469 mark so I have longer to pay. I watch the flights closely with Hopper so I know when the best price comes available. IT IS SO WORTH IT TO ME!

  55. When discussing “is it too expensive,” I’d like to see comparison with other relatively common world-class level vacations, such as skiing at a famous resort, or golfing at a best-in-class course. In comparison, I believe most would find WDW a reasonably priced vacation and a good value. For example, a day of skiing at Deer Valley, Utah is about $200 per day for an adult. This is for use of the lift from 10am until about 4pm. 6 hours. This does not include hotel, transportation to the resort, food, merch, etc…

    Pebble Beach is $575 for 18 holes, plus $45 for a caddie, $45 for a cart, etc…

    If we view WDW as a one-of-a-kind vacation destination, perhaps the current rates are not so outlandish.

    1. Molly….It’s more expensive than you mentioned…….i think your math is off? Most expensive ticket was $105 and is now $159, that’s over $50 more as you mentioned ($54 to be exact) which is a 51% increase I think, not the ~34% you mentioned!

  56. As a senior couple on fixed income it’s getting close to being too expensive. We had a trip booked for June 2020 that included 6 nights, 5 day ticket with park hopper, magical express and the standard dinning plan at Port Orleans French Quarter. The price was $3,900 plus airfare. The same trip for June 2022 is about $4,400, that includes $3,200 for 6 nights at POFQ, 5 day tickets with park hopper, budget of $200 a day for food etc., up to $200 for round trip transport from MCO toWDW (including tips). Plus airfare which is also more expensive. Along with the expense the lack of amenities combined with the increased reliance on technology makes WDW a hard choice for seniors.

    1. If more people would send Disney the message instead of griping about it, maybe things might change. If SJW’s can gripe and Disney cows down to them, why can’t they listen to ordinary folks who want to experience Disney without be nickel and dimed to death. Disney is turning into a rich persons amusement park, with more and more expensive experiences, possibly charging for fast passes and erasing Walt’s original dream.

      1. Why won’t they listen? After the brouhaha over the Star Wars hotel experience pricing, you’d think they would, right? No. Because they don’t want those who can’t afford their escalating prices to go anymore. They want to cut down on the crowding and the best way to do that is to make it unaffordable for the majority of families. The overcrowding is turning away the rich folk who can instead travel all over Europe for a nicer time. They want that money back in their hands.

        All the complaining and boycotting of the parks is what they WANT. This is free marketing that will attract the “haves” and put off the middle class. Or at least, get the die-hards to starve themselves long enough to afford that once in a lifetime trip and fork over all their money.

        Needless to say, I cancelled my Nov 2021 trip. Not only due to Covid (I really don’t trust FL to figure this out by then), but also because I’m disgusted Disney’s business practices of late.