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Which Disneyland Ticket Should You Buy?

by Leap on January 1, 2019 15 Los Angeles

Which Disneyland Ticket Should You Buy - Disneyland EntranceOne of the most important decisions you can make when planning a Disneyland vacation is deciding how long to visit and which Disneyland ticket to buy. While there are quite a number of options when it comes to Disneyland tickets, thankfully there aren't too many. Today, we'll explore all of the options so you can decide which Disneyland ticket is right for you! And you might have heard our good news, but we've made it a little lighter on your wallet by now offering discount Disneyland tickets.

Deciding Which Disneyland Ticket and How Many Days at Disneyland

The first thing you should determine when deciding on which Disneyland ticket is how many days you want to spend at Disneyland and Disney California Adventure. While families routinely spend a week or longer at Disney World, Disneyland's size lends itself to shorter visits. At Disneyland, the entrances to the two parks plus Downtown Disney are within a minute or two of each other. And many of the hotel options (both on-site and off-site) are within a few minutes walk to several minutes drive. Keep in mind that there are no Disneyland water parks and that many families planning a Los Angeles vacation may visit other nearby theme parks such as Universal Studios Hollywood, Knott's Berry Farm or Six Flags Magic Mountain and do other sight-seeing during their visit as well. (We always plan at least one day for the beach, and Flora is always set on doing a tour while we're there.)

Which Disneyland ticket - entrance

Disneyland Resort offers 1-, 2-, 3-, 4- and 5-day tickets. Most families opt to spend about three days in the Disneyland parks, and two is the recommended minimum. First-time visitors should plan at least a three-day visit and maybe a four-day visit, depending on how busy the park is (see the best times to visit Disneyland for suggestions on when to go). If it's a less busy time of year, it will be easier to experience all of the major park attractions. During the busiest times of year, it will take longer to experience the major attractions.

Disneyland Magic Morning

Which Disneyland ticket - Magic Morning

If you are going to take advantage of the Magic Morning or Extra Magic Hour, make sure to be at the entrance at least 30 minutes ahead of the early opening time.

It's worth noting that if you purchase 3-, 4- or 5-day Disneyland tickets in advance, you will have the option of attending one Magic Morning early admission. You get one early admission to Disneyland Park during your length of stay on Tuesday, Thursday or Saturday with Magic Morning.* Tomorrowland and Fantasyland attractions are currently the areas of the park open during the Magic Morning. Guests staying at one of the three Disneyland Resort properties also enjoy Extra Magic Hour, which is early admission during every day of their hotel stay, at either Disneyland Park or Disney California Adventure Park. (Read more about the benefits of staying at a Disneyland Resort hotel.) Currently, the Extra Magic Hour schedule is:

  • Disneyland Park: Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays
  • Disney California Adventure Park: Mondays, Wednesdays, Fridays and Sundays

We have one really important Frog Family tip regarding the Magic Morning or Extra Magic Hour: Arrive early! For Magic Morning, arrive at least 30 minutes ahead of early opening time. For Extra Magic Hour, arrive at least 15 minutes ahead of early opening time. Because lots of people take advantage of the benefit, you don't want to spend that first hour of early opening waiting to get into the park!

* Subject to capacity, cancellation and other restrictions.

When Deciding Which Disneyland Ticket, Should You Purchase a Park Hopper?

Which Disneyland ticket - Main Street U.S.A.

We think Park Hoppers are unequivocally a good idea at Disneyland, and not just because we like hopping! The biggest reason is convenience. Because Disneyland and Disney California Adventure are so close by, it's no big deal to just walk or "hop" between the two parks. In fact, you could spend your day hopping back and forth between the parks if you wanted. That's what we tend to do when we visit. Some people hop as part of their touring plan strategy since you can hold FastPasses for both parks at the same time.

It doesn't cost that much to add on Park Hoppers at Disneyland, so that is another consideration as well. You want to maximize your time in the parks. And Disneyland often staggers the park closing times. By purchasing Park Hoppers, you would be able to hop to the park open late, catching World of Color at Disney California Adventure or Fantasmic! at Disneyland on the nights that it is shown. The only reason we can think to not purchase Park Hoppers is if budget just absolutely doesn't allow for it or you are not able to spend full days in the park. For example, if you were attending a nearby convention for a few days and could only spend evenings at Disneyland, then adding on Park Hoppers probably doesn't make sense.

So there you have it, the full scoop on Disneyland tickets and our recommendations on which to get as you plan your trip! Don't froget, we're now selling discount Disneyland tickets.

Have questions about which Disneyland ticket is right for you? Share in comments below! You'll find even more helpful information in our Disneyland and Disney California Adventure park plans. 

Related: Best Time to Visit Disneyland

Keep hopping!

Keep hopping, Leap!
View Comments
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Mar 13, 2019 at 3:27 a.m. QuadMomma Says...

If I buy a 3 day pass, can we add an extra day once we are there for cost of the difference between the 3 and 4 day ticket? I don't want to pay for a single day ticket, if we want to stay longer, and I don't want to overpay if we only go 3 days.

Mar 13, 2019 at 7:51 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi QuadMomma,

You sure can! Just visit a ticket booth and they'll get you upgraded.

Keep hopping!


Mar 4, 2019 at 9:59 p.m. Dono Says...

If we buy a 3 Day pass and not hopper passes can you upgrade the 3rd day to a hopper pass at the park?

Mar 5, 2019 at 8:07 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Dono,

Yes, you can upgrade to a Hopper at the parks.

Keep hopping!


Nov 19, 2018 at 7:34 p.m. Jessica Says...

I am going to Disneyland soon and it's going to be a Field trip with my class I want to know since I am 16 what will I need in order to purchase a ticket?

Nov 29, 2018 at 6 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Jessica!

Usually group tickets for field trips are purchased through the school, so check with the school first to be sure. Sometimes the tickets are cheaper through the school since they are buying in bulk. If the school is not selling them, you can purchase discounted tickets through us and link them in the Disneyland app.

If you are purchasing in person at a ticket booth, you can pay with cash, or a credit card or debit card in your name. If you do not have a credit card, you can use a parent’s card to purchase online or through the app, but not in person at the booth. They will ask for ID to match the credit card at the booth. Hope this helps :)

Hoppy planning!

Mommy Frog

Jun 25, 2018 at 9:50 a.m. Odessa Says...

My fiance and I are getting married in Sept. 2020. We are planning to get 3 day park hopper tickets w/ possibly maxpass. What I would like to know is, can I pick up tickets at the booth if I order online, and can I pick them up the a day or two before we actually go into the park? (I want to have paper tickets but not mailed to me)

Jun 27, 2018 at 8:59 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Odessa,

You can print out tickets from the email you'll receive or have them scanned on your mobile device. When you enter the park, you will receive a paper ticket at the turnstile. You don’t need to wait in any line at the ticket booth to get the paper ticket because you receive it upon entering the park!

Keep hopping!


Dec 17, 2017 at 2:14 a.m. Krista Says...

It appears some Good Neighbor Hotels sell discounted tickets, do you know if they generally sell them less than purchasing online? Thank you!

Mar 23, 2017 at 6:25 p.m. jessjane Says...

When hopping, is the wait to get into each park long? Like do you spend 15 minutes each hop waiting to get into the park? Just curious.

Mar 23, 2017 at 1:36 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Jess,

The wait time to get into each park will differ depending on the time of day, and on which park. The mornings will be busiest, with late afternoon to early evenings also busy with people coming back from Downtown Disney shopping or hotels.

Keep Hopping!


Oct 16, 2014 at 4:19 p.m. Says...

People who tend to stick to one park per day, or hop just once, should probably also avoid park hopper passes. In a 3-day trip, it's so easy to pre-plan 2 full days in Disneyland and 1 full day in California Adventure that hopping doesn't become a requirement. If you can do that small amount of pre-planning it could easily save you $156 total (for a party of four). That's a meal for 4 at Thunder Mountain Ranch BBQ and a few souvenirs for the kids that are covered by the Hopper savings. I think hopping makes more sense for people who want to totally wing it and explore as they go.

Jan 20, 2016 at 9:48 p.m. Rachelle Says...

I agree. We don't do park hopping because going back and forth between the parks is tiring. We'd rather focus on a specific area each day and take things a little bit slower instead of zig zagging between rides because our feet get worn out too quickly if we are bouncing around too much.

Mar 9, 2019 at 12:16 a.m. AnnieF Says...

Thank you this was awesome advice! This is our first time at disney and we have 3 older kids. We have been talking to people and trying to decide if we need a hopper or not. But first timers I would assume take it slower and go through a whole park at a time and then switch to the other park. I am hoping that is how it goes and is the best choice for a first time family?

Oct 16, 2014 at 1:23 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Great suggestion, DisneyDorkTom! Thanks for sharing your thoughts.

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