When the Walt Disney World Resort reopened in July 2020 after an extended closure, there was a big change to the way we plan a visit to the theme parks. In addition to requiring valid admission, Disney now requires guests to make a park reservation using the Disney Park Pass system. If you haven't been back to the theme parks recently, this new process can be confusing but we at Kingdom Konsultant Travel are here to help!
Here are some frequently asked questions about the Disney Park Pass system:
What is the Disney Park Pass System? The Disney Park Pass system is a way for guests to make a required reservation for one of the four Disney theme parks on any given day. Although originally a way for Disney to promote physical distancing in the theme parks, the Park Pass system appears to be here to stay as it allows Disney to continue to manage attendance at the parks. All guests ages 3 and up must have a park reservation in addition to their theme park ticket in order to enter the theme parks. Guests age 3 and under do not need a Park Pass reservation and will still be able to enter the park with the rest of their party. Guests are limited to one Park Pass reservation per day.
Can I still Park Hop with the new system? The Park Hopper Option is still available but it's also slightly different from what you may have experienced pre-pandemic. There are now designated hours for park hopping. Park Hopper hours start at 2pm each day and end at the park's scheduled closing time. In order to park hop, guests must make a Disney Park Pass reservation for the first park they plan to visit and enter that first park prior to visiting another. A Park Pass reservation is not required after the initial park you visit.
Is the Park Hopper Option worth it with the new system? That's a good question and one that is definitely subjective. With park hopping currently starting at 2pm each day, it does limit the amount of hours for park hopping. This past winter when the parks closed starting around 5pm, that only allowed for 3 hours a day to park hop at some parks. That might not seem worth it to you. We have recently seen park hours get extended which adds to the amount of time available to park hop so the worth of the Park Hopper Option has also increased. Take a look at the park hours for your vacation dates to determine if the Park Hopper Option is worth it to you.
Do I need to make a Park Pass reservation if I have a dining reservation in a theme park? Yes! A dining reservation does not guarantee admission to the theme park. To dine at an in-park restaurant, you must have a Park Pass reservation and valid admission for the same park on that same date for each guest ages 3 and up.
Can I make dinner reservations in the park I plan to visit after 2pm with my Park Hopper? Yes, however it is not recommended. Dining reservations or pre-booked experiences like Savi's Workshop do not guarantee access to a park and the Park Hopper availability may change daily. We recommend guests book in-park dining and other experiences at the park where they have a Disney Park Pass reservation.
Where and how do I check theme park availability? It's crucial that you check theme park availability before you purchase your theme park tickets or book your vacation package. This can be done by clicking on the link on the Disney Park Pass system page or from the My Plans page of the Disney World website. On that Theme Park Reservation Availability page you can see that Park Passes are broken into 3 categories; Theme Park Tickets, Select Resort Hotels and Annual Passes. If you click on each category, you may see different availability.
|Theme Park availability by Theme Park Tickets, Select Resort Hotels and Annual Passes
What if there is no theme park availability for the dates I want to go on vacation? If there is no availability at any of the four theme parks for your potential vacation dates, you'll need to pick new vacation dates. Although theme park availability can change and more passes may become available, it's not guaranteed. In fact, if you are purchasing theme park tickets the website won't let you purchase tickets for days that have no theme park availability through the Disney Park Pass system.
|Unavailable days will show in gray
When should I make my Disney Park Pass reservations? It is recommended that you make your Disney Park Pass reservations immediately after you purchase tickets or book a vacation package. Availability is constantly changing so it's highly recommended that you don't wait to get your Park Pass reservations. Book them as soon as possible to avoid any disappointment about parks not having availability.
If my plans change, can I change my Disney Park Pass reservations? Yes, as long as there is still availability, you can change your Park Pass reservations. You can now modify your Park Pass reservation by clicking on Modify Reservation on the My Disney Park Pass Reservations page.
Does everyone in my party have to go to the same park on the same day? No, everyone in your party does not have to go to the same park on the same day. If you want to split up and visit different parks on any given day, just make sure you are selecting the correct people for each park. For example, let's imagine you are a party of 4 and 2 guests want to visit the Magic Kingdom and 2 guests want to visit Disney's Hollywood Studios on December 31st. You would select the 2 guests who want to visit the Magic Kingdom and book their Park Pass reservations for the Magic Kingdom and then you can go back and book Park Pass reservations for the other 2 guests who want to visit Disney's Hollywood Studios.
Do you have any questions about the Disney Park Pass system? Let us know in the comments and we'd be happy to answer your questions.
For more guidance on how to make your Disney Park Pass reservations, make sure to read our Disney Park Pass System Step by Step Guide.
Ashley has been a Disney Parks fan from an early age and loves anything vintage Disney. You can email Ashley at firstname.lastname@example.org.