We have seen quite a few complaints lately that during this time of pandemic, Disney World has taken away a lot of the entertainment from the parks due to social distancing. No longer do the parks have any parades, Character Meet and Greets or nightly firework shows. There are no longer FastPass+ Selections or Extra Magic Hours for those that stayed at a Walt Disney World Resort Hotel. The parks are also running at reduced hours, as many as 4 or more hours less than at this time last year. With all of these factors, Disney is still charging full-price for park admission tickets. This made us wonder… How much does it really cost to ride each ride in the parks if we include the limited hours, walking time between attractions, wait times for each ride, the length of the ride and taking a break for lunch.
For this post, we are going to use Magic Kingdom as the example. I will use the current wait times at the time of this post taken from the MyDisney App for IOS.
We will start with the price of parking your vehicle and the cost of a 1 day base ticket to Magic Kingdom bought at the gate.
- Parking: $25.00
- 1 day base ticket: $125.00
Admission into the park: $150.00 per person.
Today’s hours at Magic Kingdom are 9:00 AM to 6:00 PM or 9 hours.
- If we enter the park and head straight to the closest attraction our first ride would be Buzz Lightyear’s Space Ranger Spin. This ride is approximately a 15 minute walk from the entrance of the park and currently has a 20 minute wait. Once on the ride, the attraction is about 4 minutes. That would be a total of 45 minutes and the time would be 8:40am.
- Our next ride would be Space Mountain which is about a 5 minute walk from Buzz Lightyear’s Space Range Spin and currently has a 30 minute wait time. It takes about 11 minutes to ride Space Mountain for a total of 46 minutes… The time is now 9:26am.
- Next would be Tomorrowland Speedway which is about a 10 minute walk from Space Mountain and currently has a 20 minute wait time. It takes about 5 minutes to do the single lap around the track. This would be a total of 35 minutes. The time is now 10:00am.
- At this point, we assume most would stop to get a snack, drink or visit the restrooms for approximately 15 minutes. The time is now 10:15am.
- The next attraction that we would visit is Seven Dwarfs Mine Train which is about a 5 minute walk from Tomorrowland Speedway and currently has a 55 minute wait. The ride lasts 3 minutes (really, just 3 minutes?) for a total of 63 minutes. The time is now 11:03am.
- The next attraction would be The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh, which is directly across from Seven Dwarfs Mine Train so we would say the walk there is 1 minute. Current wait time for this attraction is 20 minutes and the ride is 4 minutes long for a total of 25 minutes. The time is now 11:28am.
- We will head for one more attraction before heading for lunch at Cosmic Ray’s Cafe.
- Our last show before lunch will be Mickey’s PhilharMagic which is a 5 minute walk from The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh. There is currently a 20 minute wait time and the show is 12 minutes long for a total of 37 minutes. The time is now 12:05pm.
- We now head to Cosmic Ray’s for lunch… I am estimating the time that it takes for you to place and receive your mobile order, find somewhere to sit and then to eat your lunch to be approximately 45 minutes. The time is now 12:50pm.
- Our next attraction would be Peter Pan’s Flight which is about a 5 minute walk from Cosmic Ray’s Cafe. It currently has a 25 minute wait time and the ride lasts 3 minutes for a total of 33 minutes. The time is now 1:23PM.
- The next attraction would be It’s a Small World which is a 1 minute walk from Peter Pan’s flight and currently has a 25 minute wait. The ride time is 11 minutes for a total of 37 minutes. The current time is now 2:00pm.
- At this point, we assume most would stop to get a snack, drink or visit the Rapunzel Bathrooms for approximately 15 minutes. The time is now 2:15pm.
- The next ride would be Haunted Mansion which take about 3 minutes to get to. Haunted Mansion currently is experiencing a 50 minute standby line and the ride takes about 8 minutes to complete for a total of 61 minutes. The time is now 3:16pm.
- Big Thunder Mountain would be our next destination with a transit time of 10 minutes from Haunted Mansion. The ride currently has a 40 minute wait time and takes 4 minutes to ride for a total of 54 minutes. The time is now 4:10pm.
- Our next entertainment option would be Splash Mountain and it would take approximately 5 minutes to arrive there. It is currently experiencing a 55 minute wait and the ride takes 11 minutes to ride for a total of 71 minutes. The time is now 5:21pm.
- We are probably only going to be able to ride one more attraction because the park will be closing in under 40 minutes…
- So we head to Pirates of the Caribbean which is about a 10 minute walk from Splash Mountain and is currently experiencing a 40 minute wait. The ride lasts for 9 minute and the total time for this ride is 59 minutes which means The time is 6:20pm AND THE PARK IS NOW CLOSED!
Due my calculations above, we were able ride 12 attractions/rides during our 9 hour visit to Magic Kingdom. Please remember, this is based on how my family visits the park. It also does not include any time that is used when stopping to look at souvenirs. With that said, 12 rides may be higher than the average family could visit in 9 hours.
With it costing a total of $150.00 to enter the park per person, each ride cost each person $12.50 to ride.
To break it down even more… Adding up the length of each ride above, we spent 85 minutes actually on the rides during a 9 hour day. That means that we spent roughly $1.76 per minute to ride the attractions in the park.
This works out to
- Buzz Lightyear’s Space Ranger Spin – $7.07
- Space Mountain – $19.40
- Tomorrowland Speedway $8.82
- Seven Dwarfs Mine Train – $5.29
- The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh – $7.07
- Mickey’s PhilharMagic – $27.17
- Peter Pan’s Flight – $5.29
- Small World – $19.40
- Haunted Mansion – $14.11
- Big Thunder Mountain – $7.06
- Splash Mountain – $14.11
- Pirates of the Caribbean – $15.84
I’m not sure that is worth my cost of admission. I would almost think that it would be more of a value to the average visitor if Disney would reduce entrance costs and bring back the ticket booklets. But, I guess if people are still coming and paying the rates that Disney wants, they will keep them the same.
I am curious what is going to happen at Disney in January when Disney Parks normally announces a fee increase for park tickets and season passes.