Where to Buy Theme Park Tickets (And Where Not to Buy Them)

Annual PassesOne important part of a Disney vacation is purchasing your theme park tickets. I should also mention that if you need help with the basic rules and types of tickets visit our article on Disney World Magic Your Way tickets. Below we will lay out the positives and negatives of each place you can buy Disney World park tickets. You basically have two major options to purchasing tickets. You can purchase them through Disney or through an Authorized Disney Ticket Broker, but there are plenty of places that sell Disney tickets that are not authorized to do so and it could cost you, so make sure you have educated yourself on these as well.

Purchasing Through Disney World Directly
The main options for purchasing tickets will be through Disney World directly. With the advent of FP+, where you can pre-book attraction ride times options, we do recommend having your park tickets purchased at least 60 days in advance if staying on site or 30 days in advance if staying off-site, as you must have park tickets linked to your account to make FP+ reservations on those dates. If purchasing directly from Disney you will not get any discount at all on your park tickets, unless they are running a special such as the “Play, Stay, and Dine” promotion they have run the past few winters. You can purchase these tickets this way on your own on the Disney World website or you can do it through your travel agent. This is the safest way to do Disney park tickets and you will get them the quickest as you can use the e-mail confirmation to link to your Disney World account. The only main negative with this option is that you can sometimes get a slightly lower price from an authorized ticket broker.

Purchasing Through an Authorized Ticket Broker
The other major way your can purchase your Disney World tickets is from an authorized Disney ticket broker, such as Undercover Tourist. Make sure you find out on the website if they are actually an authorized ticket broker as there are many, many scams out there. With a site like Undercover Tourist you can usually save from $5 to $40 per ticket depending on the type of ticket, length of ticket, and what options you have added. So, the discount is not extremely large, but if buying several tickets it could add up. Another thing we like about Undercover Tourist is that the prices they use are tax free and include free shipping of your tickets to your home. Finally, when you purchase a ticket from an authorized broker the tickets work the same on your Disney account as tickets purchased directly from Disney. Make sure you weigh the pros and cons as well as check the prices because the hassle of purchasing from a 3rd party and the other issues involved may make purchasing direct a better value or decision for you.

Where NOT to Buy Tickets
We finally want to convey to you that there are many scams out there when it comes to purchasing Disney tickets, especially as big as internet commerce is today. Some scams are somewhat valid and you will actually receive tickets for it. Meaning it could be something like a timeshare company that wants to give you deeply discounted tickets in exchange for sitting through a presentation with them. This is not something many people like to do, but most of these will actually give you tickets or discounted tickets. Do make sure you ask questions though as a lot of times these tickets have more restrictions than normal. For instance, they usually cannot be upgraded, so if you are getting a 3 day ticket, but need a ticket for 5 park days on your vacation you would have to buy a 2nd ticket as you cannot upgrade the discounted ticket from the company.

A couple of other ways to know if the website you are looking at is a scam: First, 1 day and 2 day tickets will never be discounted, Disney doesn’t allow it. If you see those tickets discounted this company is probably a scam. Second, make sure the website you are using allows you to pay with a credit card, not with something like a cash service (i.e. Western Union, etc.). Third, never purchase tickets on a website like ebay or Craigslist. Nothing good can come from buying tickets from a person you don’t know and there is no way for your to guarantee the ticket actually has days left on it until you get to the turnstiles. I don’t think you want to start the first park day of your vacation by being turned away at the turnstiles because there are no ticket days left on the ebay tickets you purchased. Along similar lines there are many locations in Orlando, specifically along International Drive, that claim to have discounted tickets. Unless they can document that they are an “official Disney ticket re-seller” you should not buy tickets there.
Bottom line in purchasing discounted tickets, and this happens to go for a lot of things in life, if it sounds to good to be true, it probably is. We hate to be the bearer of bad news on this topic, but better to know now than on the first day of your vacation.

If you have any other questions on where to buy tickets let us know in the comments section below.

Discount Disney Tickets

Leave a Comment