Save with Special Military Discounts from Disney
While Walt Disney World near Orlando, Florida might be the “Most Magical Place on Earth,” it certainly is not the cheapest place on our planet. Luckily for military members, Walt Disney offers some pretty significant military discounts across their entire portfolio of parks and entertainment options.
I’ve tried to gather together some of the biggest and most unique military deals at Disney together for you. After all, I fully understand what it’s like to live on an income set by congress each year while also enduring countless days of single parenting while my husband is TDY or deployed.
As a military family, we are so very thankful for and appreciative to the Walt Disney company for offering these fantastic specials in support of our men and women who serve our country and fight for our freedom each day both at home in the U.S. and abroad.
And while there is no denomination of savings that could ever replace missed birthdays, graduations, weddings, funerals, first steps, father-daughter dances, mother-son picnics, and all of the other significant milestones military members may miss each year due to the nature of defending our nation, it is a very warm and welcomed sentiment to be treated with this kind generosity that allows military families and friends to reunite at the Disney Parks.
U.S. MILITARY MEMBERS WITH FLORIDA RESIDENCY
If you are stationed at a military base in Florida, Walt Disney World considers you a Florida resident. If you don’t have a Florida driver’s license, you simply need a copy of your orders assigning you to an instillation in Florida and something like a utility or phone bill with your name on it to prove you actually reside in the state.
Being a Florida resident makes not only you but also your whole immediate family eligible for several Disney World Florida resident discounts. If you are a big Disney fan or happen to live within a few hours distance of Orlando, here is where you can save the most money.
The only Disney World annual pass available to the general public is the Platinum pass, but Florida residents can purchase a Gold or Silver annual pass at significant savings and have the option to pay monthly. Annual passes include perks like free parking, free personalized MagicBands and other passholder discounts and perks. Blackout dates do apply, but they are typically during peak summer and holiday times when the park is jammed to capacity anyway (not to mention, miserably hot in the summer).
If you’re only looking to make one trip a year to Disney World, Florida residents can also buy 3-day and 4-day park-hopper passes as low as $45 per day compared to $100 per day for a normal single day Magic Kingdom ticket. For our “Disneyphile” family, buying annual passes was the smartest decision, as our Silver passes pay for themselves after only two weekend trips to Orlando.
EXCLUSIVE U.S. MILITARY PRICING FOR WALT DISNEY WORLD SPECIAL EVENTS
Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party
Disney World has special events throughout the year and these events also include discounts for military families. Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party is Disney’s annual trick-or-treat gathering where the entire park and cast joins in on the fun. Military families can look for significantly discounted tickets for this event during the month of September. The official Not-So-Scary Halloween Party starts at 7 pm, but ticket holders can access the park starting at 4 pm and stay until midnight.
Active Duty, Retired, and Permanently Disabled U.S. Military, including members of the U.S. Coast Guard and active members of the National Guard or Reservists (with current military ID) can purchase discounted tickets for themselves and up to five family members or friends on these select dates. In a previous article, I included even more tips for enjoying Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party.
Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party
Another Disney World special event is Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party. For 2016, there are military discounts available on November 7, 8, 10, 11, 13, and 15. Other dates may include discounts, but these specific dates were guaranteed as of August 29. The discounted tickets, like the Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party special tickets, may be purchased at any theme park ticket window or Guest Relations Office. Tickets are NOT available online, by phone, or at MWR/ITT locations.
As an added bonus, “Mickey’s Most Merriest Celebration” debuts this 2016 holiday season. In this all-new show, Mickey and his Disney pals invite some of their friends over for a Christmas party filled with music, dancing and fun.
Featuring medleys of delightful holiday songs both classic and contemporary, along with spectacular special effects, magical projections and beloved Disney characters, “Mickey’s Most Merriest Celebration” will be presented on the Cinderella Castle Forecourt Stage only on the nights when Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party is offered. So if you want to see it and experience this special show, you have to come to the Christmas Party!
SPECIAL U.S. MILITARY RATES FOR DISNEY CRUISES
Don’t forget that Disney also operates their own cruise line with Disney Cruise military discounts. These special U.S. Military rates are limited to 50 staterooms per sailing and are only published about 30-60 days prior to sailing. If you’re willing to wait on booking or have flexibility, you can save up to 30% on the cost of a cruise.
These discounts are often on deluxe ocean view staterooms with verandas and not some secluded room under the dance floor, terribly placed next to the kitchen, under the galley, or with no windows. However, it is important to note that these special military rates are limited to a maximum of one stateroom per military member, per sailing.
Military Discounts for Multi-Day Tickets to Disney Parks
Disney World is currently saluting U.S. military personnel by offering Disney 4-Day Military Promotional Tickets for $196 or only $49/day. The Park Hopper Option is included with these tickets, so you can come and go as you please through all four theme parks each day of your ticket! There is also the option to add on the Water Park Fun & More package for only $34, plus tax, giving you access to Disney’s Typhoon Lagoon and Blizzard Beach parks as well. This is a great option in the summer months when it feels like an oven outside.
And on the West Coast, Disneyland is offering Military Promotional 3-Day Park Hopper Tickets for $143 each or only $48/day.
Active and retired U.S. military personnel can purchase Disney Military Promotional Tickets for themselves and up to five additional family members or friends (per year) at Disney ticket locations or through any military installation’s ITT/MWR.
A really great aspect of this promotion is that spouses of military service members are also eligible to purchase these tickets with a valid and active U.S. Military ID if their spouse is deployed, TDY, or simply unavailable to buy them in person. The only caveat is that these special tickets may not be purchased by both the military service member and their spouse (only either or), so no double dipping for extra tickets is allowed.
HILTON MILITARY FAMILY RATE
Whether you’re traveling to take advantage of these Disney discounts, are trying to enjoy some R&R or mid-tour time with friends and family, or are just taking a local staycation, make sure you take advantage of the Hilton Military Family rate for discounted hotel rooms. How you chose to spend the saved money is up to you, but I highly recommend spending some of it on Dole Whips and Mickey Bars inside the “Happiest Place” or “Most Magical Place” on Earth.
PARTING TIPS & BUYER BEWARE
It is impossible to cover all the nuances of Disney tickets in one article, so I always tell people to please ask a Guest Services cast member if you have any questions. However, one great thing that never changes: kids younger than 3 never need a ticket!
As a parting tip, the one thing I can’t say enough times is that I highly recommend ignoring all the billboards advertising cheap Disney tickets and instead sticking with official Disney ticket offices or purchasing tickets through your military installation’s ITT/MWR. Any third-party offering you discounted tickets is typically going to waste your valuable time or hard-earned money somehow, so don’t let them convince you to spend either.
You may also enjoy:
- Tips to Plan a runDisney Vacation
- Walt Disney World’s Magic Kingdom with Toddlers
- Hidden Gems: Discover the Secrets of Disney World
- See all of our Hilton hotels in Orlando, FL and Anaheim, CA
- Read all of our articles about family vacations to the Disney Parks
Hilton Mom Voyage writers receive free night certificates to use at Hilton Hotels & Resorts worldwide. To learn more, visit our About Us page.
Amy grew up in Southern California but has lived all over the globe. Her latest move brought her to Panama City, Florida, where she lives with her…