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Unfortunately on 14th January 2021 Disneyland announced that the Annual Passholder Program was ending.
Ken Potrock, who is the President of Disneyland Resort, said,
“We want to thank our Annual Passholders for their understanding during this closure period. Due to the continued uncertainty of the pandemic and limitations around the reopening of our California theme parks, we will be issuing appropriate refunds for eligible Disneyland Resort Annual Passports and sunsetting the current program.? We are currently developing new membership offerings that will utilize consumer insights to deliver choice, flexibility and value for our biggest fans.”
Therefore you are no longer able to purchase a Southern California Resident Annual Pass for Disneyland, or indeed any other Disneyland Annual Pass.
Due to the current closure of Disneyland Resort, this article has been updated.
Disneyland Annual Pass For Southern California Residents
You can no longer purchase any Annual Pass for Disneyland, including the SoCal Pass.
Over recent years the discount on this pass had reduced considerably.
Disneyland last announced a ticket price increase on January 6th, 2019. For the past 3 years, the price increase has come in February. However, it came even earlier in 2019.
Probably because of the highly anticipated opening of Galaxy’s Edge.
We have been writing this blog for many years and have updated this post many times. Every time the news for the Disneyland Annual Pass for Southern California Residents has been bad.
However, never has it been as bad as the news that was announced in January 2021 that the Disneyland Passholder program was “sunsetting”.
Florida residents enjoy a lot of discounts for living close to Disney World. The discounts for Florida residents on Disney World tickets are still generous and worth seeking out. Disney Cruise lines also regularly give substantial discounts for Florida residents.
Will the Disneyland SoCal Annual Pass Return?
Will the Annual Passes ever return to Disneyland? I am sure that Disneyland will have some discount scheme for regular visitors. The statement said that Disney is:
“currently developing new membership offerings that will utilize consumer insights to deliver choice, flexibility and value for our biggest fans.”
Disneyland has never released figures for just how many Annual Passholders there are, or how many Southern California Annual Passholders there are.
It is probably fair to speculate that the bulk of the number of Annual Passholders for Disneyland did live in Southern California. Unlike Disney World, Anaheim and Disneyland are surrounded by highly populated areas and many millions of people are within a reasonable driving distance on the Park.
It was clear that many local residents had Disneyland SoCal Passes. You could see how the parks got busier after 4pm as locals arrived on weekdays.
How Much Did The Disneyland Southern California Annual Pass Cost?
Why keep this detail in you may ask? I actually want to have this information in the article to easily use as a reference when I have to amend this article again. Hopefully that will be when a new, favorable scheme is announced that will still give SoCal Residents access to Disneyland discounts and hopefully heavily discounted tickets.
How much did the Disneyland Annual Pass For Southern California Residents cost? There were two types of Annual Pass just for Southern California Residents. To qualify you had to live in the zip codes 90000-93599.
There used to be many different types of Southern California Pass. However, the big change from late 2017 was that there was now only one Disney Southern Californian Annual Pass available to purchase unless you are renewing.
The Disneyland Southern Californian Annual Pass is only available if you already have one and are renewing it. So this now won’t have been issued for a while and won’t be in the future.
There is a very strong indication that Disneyland wants to discourage discounted Annual Passes for Southern Californian residents. In years gone by, when attendance was much lower and Disney’s California Adventure Park was just not getting the crowds Disney needed, they offered several different types of Southern California Pass.
Millions of people live close to Disneyland and they were easy to attract to the parks. However, those days are long gone. Crowds are high and Disneyland doesn’t need the locals as much as they used to.
With the opening of Star Wars Land in 2019, it is anyone’s guess as to whether or not any Southern California resident discounts will be wiped out altogether in the future. Disneyland California residents may find themselves with no Disneyland tickets discounts at all if the current trend continues.
In reality, from 2019 onwards there was only one discounted option for Southern California residents. This was a seriously restricted option and it didn’t come cheap – the Disneyland Southern California Select Annual Pass.
Disneyland Southern California Select Annual Pass
Note this is historical information only – you can’t buy any Disneyland Annual Passes right now.
This had blackout dates but allows up to 170 days in the Disneyland and California Adventure Parks. The cost of the Southern California Select Annual Pass was $399 in 2019 (increased from $369).
When you consider that this Pass was $339 in 2017 you can see just how quickly these ticket prices were going up.
There was no longer the option to purchase a parking pass so that will cost you a whopping $25 each time you visit.
There was a Monthly Payment Option – Southern California Select has a down payment of $154.00 and an additional 12 payments of $20.42.
Discounted tickets were no longer available for block out days as they had been in the past.
NONE OF THESE DISNEYLAND PASSES ARE AVAILABLE ANY MORE
The Disneyland Signature Plus Passport with no blackout dates used to cost $1399.
This had a monthly payment plan which is $154 down followed by monthly payments of $103.75. This Disneyland Annual Pass included theme park parking, Disney PhotoPass downloads, 15% discount on dining and 20% on merchandise.
The Disneyland Signature Plus Pass is the only annual ticket which had the MaxPass included. For every other annual pass, this was an optional add on of $100 per year (up from $70 in 2018).
The Disneyland Signature Pass which offers the same benefits as the Signature Plus but has blackout dates for 2 weeks around the Christmas Holidays. Note that this pass did not include the MaxPass.
The Disneyland Signature Pass used to cost $1149. This was $849 in 2018 so the price increase was huge. There was a payment plan with $154 down and monthly payments of $82.92.
The Disney Deluxe Annual Passport is $799 and did not give free parking! This annual pass was “only” $599 just 2 years ago. So if you parked at Disneyland, which really you have no choice unless you are paying for parking at a hotel, that was an additional $25 per visit.
This Disneyland Season Pass had blackout dates and offers 10% off dining and select merchandise. Again it had a monthly payment plan option with $154 down and monthly payments of $53.75.
What Were The Perks of Disneyland Annual Passes?
I emphasize again, that unfortunately Disneyland Annual Passes are not available right now. I am leaving this information here only so it will be easy to compare when they bring back a new Pass or discount for regular visitors.
There were other advantages to an Annual Pass for Disneyland as well as saving money on the entrance to the parks.
One of the best of these benefits was the discount on Disney dining. For the Southern Californian Disney Annual Passes the discount is 10% on dining. The Signature Plus Annual Passport offered a 15% dining discount.
The discount was for food and drinks but excluded alcohol.
Disneyland Annual Passholders were often offered discounts at Disneyland Resort Hotels. This was often a substantial saving if you intended to stay at the hotels.
Extra Magic Hours were sometimes offered to Disneyland Passholders, but in recent times this has been quite rare.
Only the Disneyland Signature Plus Passport and the Disneyland Signature Pass included parking.
What If I Bought an Annual Pass and Disneyland is Still Closed?
This is how Disneyland handled the situation initially for those who had bought an Annual Pass and were affected by the shut down.
There are 2 possible ways in which you bought your Annual Pass – you either paid in full or are paying by monthly installments.
- If you paid in full your Annual Pass expiration date will be extended for as long as the parks are closed. For example, if your original expiration date was August 2020 and the parks are closed for 4 months, your expiration date will be extended to December 2020.
- If you paid in full you have a second option that you can have a partial refund for the time you have not used. For example, if your Annual Pass expires in December 2020 and the parks are closed until September 2020 you can ask for a partial refund for the months when the park was closed. To do this you have to call Annual Passport Member Services at 714 781 4567.
- If you were paying in monthly installments your options are different. Disney automatically stopped taking monthly payments from April 5, 2020. If you were charged between March 14 and April 4, you will have this monthly payment refunded. The date your Pass expires will not change. For example if your pass was due to expire in December 2020 and the parks open in September 2020, your pass will still expire in December 2020. You will start being charged your monthly payments when the park opens again.
- If you are paying monthly you can opt to have the monthly payments restart when the park opens and then your Pass expiration date extended to add on the number of months you missed during which time the park was closed. For example, your Pass was due to expire December 2020. If the park reopens your installment payments will start again. Say this is in September. You will have missed 6 months at the park when it was closed. Therefore your expiration date will move to June 2021 as the missed months are added on to the end of the Pass. If you want this option you have to opt for it by calling 714 781 4567.
Which choice should you make? It is up to your own individual circumstances and right now it is impossible to advise as we have no idea how long Disneyland and California Adventure will be closed.
Of course, if we had a crystal ball and knew how long the park would be closed, what it looks like when we return, and how much Disney ticket prices will go up in the near future, we would know what choice to make. Unfortunately, right now, we really don’t know which way this will go.
The Future of Disneyland Southern California Annual Passes
What is the future for Disneyland Southern California Annual Passes? Will the discount for Disneyland disappear for California Residents?
It is very clear to see that Disneyland doesn’t need Southern California residents as it used to. I get it. As someone who has benefited from discounts in previous years, I am thankful.
However, I think that in the future if there even is a separate Southern California Annual Pass it will not be particularly discounted. Yes, it will be discounted, but not by very much.
Pent up demand for attendance at Disneyland is going to go off the scale when it reopens. Can you imagine all those frustrated Disneyland visitors trying to get into a park where, even when it does reopen. there will be substantially reduced capacity.
It’s sad, but I think an era is over.
I will still keep going to Disneyland and paying whatever they ask. Because it is still worth it to me and my family.
No doubt many will not return as the ticket price will be too high. Whatever scheme Disneyland come up with, the prospect of visiting the park will be just a distant dream for some many people.
Are you going to buy a Disneyland Annual Pass For Southern California Residents? Have you been a Disneyland Annual Passholder in the past?