When should we buy annual passes?


After a fantastic Easter break trip this year (due to the excellent tips picked up on Lines), my take-Disney-or-leave-it DH announced that we need to find a way to go to Disney every year! What? OK!! We've converted him!!

Conveniently, our next Easter Break (2015) and the following one (2016) fall within a year of each other so annual passes for our entire gang seem to be the most economical way to do this. Plus, I'm thinking if we have them, we may as well try to squeeze out a couple more trips, right?

We have not purchased tickets yet for 2015. I see that many people have tickets and then upgrade when they get to the parks.

I'm wondering what are the pros/cons of ordering tickets from undercover tourist (which is what we have done in past) and then upgrading those at the parks versus ordering the passes now?

What has worked for your family?


We always bought 7 day PH's at the local Disney Store using GC's bought at Target. Then upgraded at the Park. I don't see a downside to getting them on UT. Congrats on the AP's! You'll definitely sneak in another trip or 2. smile


The only downside to not buying them before your trip is that you would not be able to get any RO AP discounts that might be available. Otherwise, you can get a substantial discount on the AP by buying a discounted UT ticket and upgrading.


If you buy tickets and upgrade, you will need to spend a little of your vacation time doing the upgrade.

If you buy the AP directly, you either won't be able to make FPP reservations, or if you buy early enough, the AP will expire before the March 2016 trip.


You can buy a voucher that will allow you to make FPPs at 60 days out if you have an RO. You can also apply the AP RO discount if they have one. The AP date does not start until the date you activate on your way into the park.


Didn't know that. Thanks for the info. That would be the best of both worlds, because you could also potentially avoid the next price increase also.


Yes! Purely by accident I bought my AP voucher a couple of weeks before the last increase and did not activate it until May!


I've booked through a travel agent without having my AP yet and they were able to book me room only AP discounts. You're supposed to present your AP at check-in, so there's the potential you would have to go to one of the parks to get your pass before checking in, but that has never happened to me.


That's good to know - I have heard people complaining about not being able to get the discounts in the past, but perhaps they were not doing things right.


I think the issue is that you cannot see the discounts or have access through MDE if you do not have an annual pass linked but travel agents have access to that info?


@PrincipalTinker, I believe this is exactly the case. I can't see the AP discounts without a valid pass, but travel agents can.


So, if you have an AP "voucher" and want to book a RO reservation with the current AP discount, you have to use a TA?


I know that you can book AP discounts through a TA with just the voucher. I do not know if you can book an AP discount by calling Disney. I do know that you cannot book the AP discount through the website without yet having the valid pass.


You can see the AP discounts if you link your voucher through MDE. On the website you log into MDE and go to annual passes. I think you only need a TA if you plan on upgrading another ticket at checkin.


I am looking at purchasing an annual pass as well. With a trip Aug of 15 and July 16. We have always gone through UT before. Does anyone know exactly what the cost would be to upgrade? Should we buy PH tix before upgrade or MYW? Does that affect the overall cost? Am I making sense?