Happy Monday everyone!
It’s been a big Disney news day already, with lots of information coming out about Disney World’s new Annual Pass program. We’ve looked at the pricing differences, blockout dates, and how this will affect current Annual Passholders, so now let’s see what’s missing from this new program.
The biggest difference with the new Annual Pass program is that there are fewer options for Annual Passes exclusive to Florida residents. With the old AP program, Florida residents could choose from one of five options that were reserved only for them. Now, there are just three Florida resident exclusive options (with one also available to DVC members).
With the old AP system, the passes that were available only for Florida residents were:
- Disney Gold Pass (Florida Residents or DVC Member only): $719
- Disney Silver Pass: $539
- Disney Theme Park Select Pass: $439
- Disney Weekday Select Pass: $369
- Disney EPCOT After 4 Pass: $309
Now, the Florida residents-only passes include:
- Disney Sorcerer Pass (FL residents or DVC members only): $899
- Disney Pirate Pass: $699
- Disney Pixie Dust Pass: $399
Read MORE about the NEW pass options here!
The Pixie Dust Pass is similar to the old Disney Weekday Select Pass, with most weekends and holidays blocked out. The Pirate Pass is similar to the old Silver Pass, and the Sorcerer Pass is like the old Gold Pass. That means we’re missing the Disney Theme Park Select Pass and the Disney EPCOT After 4 Pass. These options will not be available anymore once Disney switches to the new system on September 8th. Until the 8th, you can renew your pass with the old system.
With the old annual pass system, non-Florida residents (and non-DVC members) had two options: the Platinum or Platinum Plus Pass. The biggest difference between these two was that the Platinum Plus Pass came with admission to Disney’s two water parks (Blizzard Beach and Typhoon Lagoon), Disney’s Oak Trail Golf Course, and ESPN’s Wide World of Sports complex.
Under this new program, there is only one option for non-Florida residents (and non-DVC members): the Incredi-Pass. This pass is similar to the old Platinum Pass, with admission to all four theme parks, park hopping, no blockout dates, and other benefits. Instead of another Pass that includes the water parks, any Annual Passholder can add on the Water Park and Sports option for $99 plus tax. This includes admission to Disney’s Water Parks, Disney’s Oak Trail Golf Course, Miniature Golf, and more, with no blockout dates.
Another big thing missing from the new Annual Passes is PhotoPass, which used to be included in the Gold, Platinum, and Platinum Plus Passes. Now, PhotoPass will not be included in any pass. Instead, you can add it onto a pass for $99 plus tax.
MagicBands will also not be included with Annual Passes. We heard about this change earlier this year, and it went into effect on Autust 16th, 2021. Instead, Annual Passholders (and all other Disney World guests) will need to either use the MagicMobile service on their smartphones, purchase a MagicBand separately, or use an old MagicBand that they’ve linked to their current tickets.
The blockout dates are a little different under the new system as well. For the Pixie Dust Pass and the Incredi-Pass, the blockout dates are fairly similar to the old system. There are no blockout dates for the Incredi-Pass and most weekends and holidays are blocked out for the Pixie Dust Pass.
Some of the blockout dates for the Pixie Dust Pass are different than the ones for Weekday Select Pass, with Thanksgiving week and a week in March 2022 being blocked out while they weren’t for the Weekday Select Pass. However, more summer days are available with the Pixie Dust Pass, as all of June and July 2022 were blocked out for the Weekday Select Pass, and these dates are available with the Pixie Dust Pass.
The Disney Pirate Pass is most similar to the old Silver Pass, so we’ll be comparing the blockout dates between these two. With the old Silver Pass, some holidays and other select dates were blocked out, including a couple of weeks in December, some in April, and all of June and July 2022. The Pirate Pass has more holidays blocked out, like a week in November for Thanksgiving, a few more weekends in October 2021 and January and February 2022, and a week in March 2022. However, the Pirate Pass does not have June and July 2022 blocked out — these dates are open for guests who have the Pirate Pass.
The Disney Sorcerer Pass is comparable to the old Gold Pass. With the Gold Pass, blockout dates included a couple of weeks over Christmas and two weeks in April 2022. The Sorcerer Pass has blockout dates over Thanksgiving (but not as many as the Pirate Pass) and a couple of weeks over Christmas break in December. Besides that, all dates are available with the Sorcerer pass.
You can see ALL the blockout dates for the new passes here!
Wrapping up, the main differences are the two add-ons (the Disney Water Parks and Sports pass and PhotoPass for $99 each), fewer Florida residents-only options, only one option for out-of-state residents, and different blockout dates for most of the passes. Keep following DFB for more information about the new system!
Get ALL of the details on the NEW Annual Pass Program here.
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Are you planning to get a new Annual Pass for Disney World? Let us know in the comments!
Shari Pfeffer says
Not happy about having to add PhotoPass for extra, plus whatever The Genie is going to offer.
You keep saying that the Pixie Dust Pass is $399 but Disney has sent out a notice with the price of $339.
Disney just keeps pushing guests away with the exorbitant price increases across the board – annual passes, less extra hours, penalizing guests staying at moderate resorts with no extra hours, special events, restaurants, merchandise, resorts, to list a few – and providing/including less and less. Greed and lesser service was not the driving force for the Disney that Walt Disney built. It was family and enjoyment not how will i finance a family trip to the supposedly most magical place on earth. We read that the parks were the least favorite of Chapek and he certainly is/has proven that to be true. It is sad and disappointing that the Board of Directors does not take an interest in what is actually happening instead of just listening to the beautifully scripted presentations and moving on to next agenda item. We have been coming to the parks since opening day and been annual passholders since their inception.
Not happy about losing PhotoPass. Guess parking is next to go.
I’m curious as to how it will work when making a park reservation and there is availability for all ticket holders except Passholders on any given non-blacked out day.
When they first started opening the parks back up in 2020 we could make park reservations (please Disney do away with this) on various days but our AP friends could not because there was not AP availability. Our AP had expired 3 days after the shut-down and they had just bought theirs so we never renewed. If I’m spending that kind of money I want to know that if there is availability for a park that I, as a AP, can get into a park.
Eric Erickson says
To date, I haven’t seen a “special rate” for AP Renewal. In the past, the cost for RENEWAL of an Annual Pass was typically significantly less than obtaining a NEW Annual Pass.
Sooooo do they have a pass for weekday FL resident, DVC member with water parks. Or do I get the pixi-weekday and add the water parks for $99.
Deb Titus says
As current pass holders, when we visit Disney, do we continue to receive the previous benefits such as photo pass or do we lose that benefit. When we signed up for annual pass magic, that was a big benefit for us.
DFB Sarah says
Deb, you’ll retain your benefits (including PhotoPass) with the current Pass until you renew (whenever that happens to be). When you renew, as long as you stay in an equivalent Pass, Disney is saying you’ll retain those benefits as well.
DFB Sarah says
Ken, if you are renewing a FL resident/DVC Pass that already has the water parks, you’ll retain that benefit. If this is a new purchase, it sounds like the Pixie Dust Pass would be a good weekday option for you (with the FL resident monthly payments if that’s applicable to you), and you would have to add the Water Park and Sports Add-On. Does that clarify?
DFB Sarah says
Eric, the prices are $1104 for Incredi-Pass, $764 for Sorcerer, $594 for Pirate, and $339 for Pixie Dust when you renew.
DFB Sarah says
Texas84, just wanted to let you know that for Annual Passholders who renew into an equivalent Pass under the new program, they’ll retain the PhotoPass benefit of their current Pass. Not sure if that helps, but I wanted to let you know.
DFB Sarah says
Rich, I know the renewal price for the Disney Pixie Dust Pass is $339. Perhaps that is the number they’ve included.
DFB Sarah says
Shari, I hear you. If you’re renewing a Pass, I just wanted to let you know that Disney is saying guests who renew into an equivalent Pass type will retain their current benefits.
Wait WHAT!?! Sara, I’ve seen you repeat it here and on several other posts, if you renew into the Equivalent Pass they retain their current benefits. – Including Photo Pass.
Meaning are they “grandfathered” in? And don’t have to ADD the PHOTOPASS ADDON???
I already renewed this year (during Covid I did NOT ask for the refund or cancel my AP, I kept it and got the extension they offered during the closure.)
My next renewal is not until next year – 2022.
Are you saying that my Platinum Pass that I renewed 3 months ago, will convert to the Incredipass on 9/8/2021. And still has PhotoPass. (I worry about this not sure the conversion will hold my Photopass).
Then if/when I renew next year my now Incredipass 2021 to the Incredipass 2022 it will still have PhotoPass?
I can not believe that, it would be nice if they grandfathered us in, and paid us back for sticking it out through no entertainment, and operations limited. I won’t expect it.
I know things can change and I don’t have time to call, and will just see how it falls out, as I doubt they would do that based on what they have put out in business matters, the last 2 months.
DFB Sarah says
Hi, Jellybean. Thank you for reaching out to ask for clarification. As you said, things change, so I went back to my team today to make sure I had all the details right. Current Passholders who are in their renewal windows need to renew and activate by 9/7 in order to maintain their current Pass with their current benefits. Passholders who are in their renewal windows and renew by 9/7 but activate at a later date will be activated into a new Pass type but keep their current benefits. Passholders who are not in their renewal windows will renew into a new Pass type when their renewal windows open and will not retain their benefits. That last detail is the one that, I think, has been murky. So I hope this breakdown helps (even though I know it’s a bummer for a lot of folks).