Should you park hop or not? That is the question. My opinion is that you absolutely SHOULD Park Hop, and I’m going to tell you why.
Florida weather is ridiculously unpredictable. It can be perfectly clear and sunny one minute, and pouring down rain the next. So let’s say you only have a 4-day ticket, and you reserve a day in each park. You’re in the Magic Kingdom, and you’re super excited to watch Happily Ever After, but a thunderstorm rolls in and sits over the Magic Kingdom, causing them to have to cancel the fireworks. The next day, though, ends up being absolutely beautiful, only you’re at Animal Kingdom, which not only has no fireworks, but it closes at 6:00 pm. With a park hopper, you can just hop from Animal Kingdom to Magic Kingdom, where you can easily enjoy the fireworks you missed the night before!
There are plenty of dining options available in each park, so you’re certainly not going to starve, but park hopper not only opens up options, it gives you more chances to grab that elusive, hard-to-get reservation. If you only have one day in Magic Kingdom, but the only reservation you can get for Cinderella’s Royal Table is on your Animal Kingdom day, the park hopper makes it a nonissue. You can hop to any other park after 2:00 pm currently, provided you check in to the park you originally had a reservation for, and you could even hop back after your meal if you wanted to do so.
Ride Closures and Breakdowns
Say you really wanted to ride Avatar Flight of Passage, and you even waited until the end of the day to get in line, so that time wasn’t an issue. Only, the ride goes down and they close and tell everyone the ride is closed for the day. You don’t have a park hopper, so now you can’t ride Flight of Passage, and you have no idea if or when you’ll return to Walt Disney World. BUT….if you have a park hopper, you can return another day just to ride Flight of Passage. Unfortunately, this sort of thing happens, and there’s no way for Disney to prevent it, but they did create the park hopper pass, and it’s worth every penny!
Catch Something You Missed or Ride a Favorite Again
This seems self-explanatory, but here we go. Missed Splash Mountain? Head back to Magic Kingdom! Want to see Festival of the Lion King again? Hop over to Animal Kingdom. Mickey and Minnie’s Runaway Train was down when you went to ride it? You get my point. Park Hoppers offer you more flexibility to get in everyone’s must-do rides first and then go back and start to ride the next round of must-do rides!
Last Minute Shopping
Sometimes you see something you REALLY want but you think you’ll find it at least one more time at another store in another park. And then you realize “oh no, it was ONLY there!” The park hopper allows you to go back into that park and get that pair of ears you REALLY wanted!
Pricing Breakdowns vs Amenities
A 4-day base ticket can run from $400-$500 for an adult ticket, depending on the day your ticket will begin. All that you get is access to one park per day for 4 days. That’s it.
So if you wanted to go to, say, a water park, a one-day water park ticket is $69. If you have a 4-day Water Park and Sports Ticket, for $74 more, or $18.50 per day, you can go to one park per day PLUS one water park or miniature golf or golf at Oak Trail or Foot Golf or NBA Experience (when open) or Wide World of Sports (when open) per day. I know I suck at math, but $18.50 per day for all of that versus $69 for one day at the water park is a pretty good deal.
Now to add the Park Hopper, you get as many parks per day as your little heart desires (currently hopping is allowed after 2:00 pm after checking in to the park you had reserved for the day) for an additional $22.50 per day per person. BUT if you add the Park Hopper PLUS ticket, for a mere $28 per person per day, you get ALL the parks, PLUS the water parks, golf, foot golf, and mini golf. $28 per day per person. That’s it. For all of those added options. Versus $69 per person for ONE VISIT to ONE water park. Now obviously, if you’re not at all interested in sports or water parks, the best option for you is the park hopper. But if you would truly like the all-inclusive aspects of the Walt Disney World Resort, the park hopper plus option cannot be beat. That is truly a GREAT value.
Do you need help planning your next vacation? Contact me today!!!