Commentary: Disneyland lowers my joy as prices go ‘Up’

Jolene Nacapuy, Editor i Chief
Jolene Nacapuy, Editor in Chief

I like to sit back and think of what rides I will go on or what food I will eat as I look forward to a happy day at one of my favorite places to go in California: Disneyland.

But with its recent price increases, the so-called “happiest place on Earth” turned my bank account into the saddest place I know. It took away my happiness and excitement of being able to go to Disneyland.

Disneyland has bumped up its prices to a whole new level and added two new passes.

The Premium Pass is now the new Signature Plus, which is the most expensive pass. It costs over $1,000, an increase of 35 percent over the previous price of $779. This pass allows unlimited access to Disneyland and Disney California Adventure, as well as discounts on some food and merchandise in the parks.

Pass holders who have the Premium Pass are still allowed to use the pass until it expires, but will not be allowed to renew.

The somewhat cheaper version of this pass, the Signature Plus, has the same benefits as the plus, but has two weeks of blackout dates. These dates are during the holiday season, the busiest time of the year.

The Disney Deluxe also has risen nine percent to $600 with 50 blackout dates. The So Cal pass, which allows 215 days of admission to the parks can only be renewed and not be able to purchased by new pass holders. The pass is now $459, a 12 percent rise in price. The last pass, which is known to be the cheapest, is now $329, which used to be about $200.

Single-day admission remains at $99. It was increased to that price in February of this year.

Parking has increased to $18 instead of $17. Though it is just a dollar that is a dollar you could spend on something else. I remember when parking used to be just $15.

The reason Disneyland has increased its prices is because of revenue and overcrowding, according to Disneyland spokeswoman Suzi Brown.

They hope to thin the amount of annual pass holders, as well as traffic in the parks, though they believe that they will still rake in the same amount or even more. Loyal Disney lovers will still go to Disneyland no matter what and pay to renew their passes.

Disneyland already rakes in so much money with the price of food and merchandise alone, so raising the prices even more is just too much.

As a student at La Verne who already struggles financially, having to pay the increased tuition of this year, as well as holding a job and other extracurricular activities, I am very grumpy like the dwarf in “Snow White.”

Unfortunately, I am one of those people who are not able to renew my pass because of this, and it saddens me that I can’t.

I am confident that I am not the only one unhappy with these prices because money is something that does not grow on trees.

Not having classes on some days, especially on Fridays, for the third semester in a row is a luxury. I can do what I want, besides homework, but I like a day where I can just go to Disneyland to unwind and have fun. Now, that has been taken away due to the price increase.

After my high school graduation, I took a two-week vacation to California to visit the University for the first time. I was so excited because I had dreamt of stepping onto the grounds of Disneyland since I was in elementary school.

Most of my friends took family trips to Disneyland and told me stories, and when I finally got the chance to go, it was an exciting experience.

Then, during my sophomore year at La Verne, I decided to invest in a Disney pass, which was one of the greatest investments I made. I was excited because I could go to Disneyland as much as I wanted and have a great time. Renewing it did not become a problem until this year. Unfortunately, I was not able to do it.

The clock wound down to midnight on Oct. 9 and my pass officially expired. The magic carpet ride of Disneyland happiness ran out, so I had to head back into a lamp of sadness.

Like many who hold a Disney pass and do not want to pay for the increase, I now have to decide if I want to be under the sea of debt or no longer enjoy the luxury of going to Disneyland as often as before.

Disneyland has never lowered its prices, and it would be a miracle if they did.

When Disneyland decides to lower prices, there will have been some bibbidi-bobbid-boo magic. But for now, I would not leave a glass slipper behind because you could pawn it to pay for your new pass.

Jolene Nacapuy, a senior journalism major, is editor in chief for the Campus Times. She can be reached by email at and on Twitter @_jjolenenacapuy.


  1. You have an error. The somewhat cheaper version of this pass, the Signature Plus, has the same benefits as the plus, but has two weeks of blackout dates.

    You are referring to the Signature Pass and comparing it to the Signature Plus.

    Also the Signature Pass is 20% cheaper than the Signature Plus. Compared to how you have listed increase percentages, “somewhat cheaper” may not be the most accurate way to present this.

    You have missed the added benefits of Signature Passes which include a year of Photopass downloads.

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