With the arrival of the Magic Key pass program at the Disneyland Resort, it is very easy to start comparing it with what was had before. Is it better? Is it worse? Really, all of that remains to be seen once people have purchased and experienced this new program firsthand. By the numbers, here is what the Magic Key pass program looks like in a few different ways.
First off, how does the original Magic Key compare to the Disneyland Annual Pass? Here is a look at both of these options:
Magic Key Details
|Magic Key Type||Days Available:||Price on August 25, 2021||Parking||Park Reservations||Merchandise Discount||Dining Discount|
|Imagine||147 Days||$399||Not included||2 at a time||10%||10%|
|Enchant||219 Days||$649||Not included||4 at a time||10%||10%|
|Believe||317 Days||$949||50% Discount||6 at a time||10%||10%|
|Dream||365 Days||$1,399||Included||6 at a time||20%||15%|
Disneyland Annual Pass Details
|Annual Pass Type||Days Available||Price in 2020||Parking||Park Reservations||Merchandise Discount||Dining Discount|
|SoCal Select||170||$419||Not included||n/a||10%||10%|
|Disney Flex Pass||215||$649||Not included||2 per 30 days||10%||10%|
As can be seen in the above graphs, the Dream Magic Key is actually $100 less than the Signature Plus Annual Pass. The Believe Magic Key appears to be a mix of Deluxe and Signature Annual Passes. A big difference here is that parking is a 50% discount versus included with Signature and not included with Deluxe. It appears the difference was quite literally split. The Enchant Magic Key versus the Disney Flex Pass have the same prices. However, with the Enchant a guest can reserve four days at a time. Parking is not included for either of these. Finally, the SoCal Select versus the Imagine Magic Key finds that there are fewer dates available and a lower price for the Imagine Magic Key. For all levels of the Magic Key levels versus the former Annual Pass have the same discounts. The updated Magic Key offerings can be found here.
Magic Key/Daily Ticket Break Even Marks
Next, let’s take a look at where it makes sense to purchase a Magic Key versus a single day ticket. Because there is a park hopping option built into the Magic Key program (based on availability), let’s use single day tickets with the park hopping option included for the comparison. This comparison will also be quite literal on where the break even mark is.
|Single Day Ticket Type||Imagine ($399)||Enchant ($649)||Believe ($949)||Dream ($1,399)|
|Tier 1 Park Hopper ($159)||3||5||6||9|
|Tier 2 Park Hopper ($169)||3||4||6||9|
|Tier 3 Park Hopper ($179)||3||4||6||8|
|Tier 4 Park Hopper ($194)||3||4||5||8|
|Tier 5 Park Hopper ($209)||2||4||5||7|
As can be seen by the above numbers, the new Magic Key pass program is very similar to the former Disneyland Annual Pass program. While there are some differences, it seems that in terms of the numbers, things have stayed very close. The biggest difference is guests having to book reservations for their visits. With this comes the number of reservations that can be booked.
In the summer of 2022, the Magic Key program was updated with a new level and different options. The following has been updated to reflect the new Magic Keys, new numbers, and new break even marks!
Magic Key/Daily Ticket Break Even Marks in 2023
|Single Day Ticket Type||Imagine ($449)||Enchant ($699)||Believe ($1,099)||Inspire ($1,599)|
|Tier 1 Park Hopper ($164)||3||5||7||10|
|Tier 2 Park Hopper ($179)||3||4||7||9|
|Tier 3 Park Hopper ($194)||3||4||6||9|
|Tier 4 Park Hopper ($209)||3||4||6||8|
|Tier 5 Park Hopper ($219)||3||4||6||8|
|Tier 6 Park Hopper ($224)||2||4||5||8|
While this is a comparison of new and old the question will inevitably be asked of which one is better. Really, that can’t be answered at this point as nobody has experienced the Magic Key pass program and therefore nobody can compare it to the Disneyland Annual Pass program. Perhaps after a year (or many more years), guests will have experienced the Magic Key pass program enough to start being able to compare the two. Even then, it will be very hard to compare as they come from two very different times in Disney history.
The Magic Key pass program will be arriving on August 25, 2021. On that day, guests will be able to both purchase their Magic Key and also use them to visit the parks. What do you think of what you are seeing so far of the Magic Key pass program? Share your thoughts in the comments below.