Thrifty Thursday: To Park Hop or Not Park Hop?

As you select your tickets for your next Walt Disney World trip, you will have the option to add the Park Hopper, which allows you to visit more than one park in a single day.  This add-on does cost extra, but can add a lot more flexibility to plans than the regular park tickets, making it a great value if you want to get the most out of your time in the parks!

Park Hoppers mean that you can:

Be flexible with dining reservations: With Advanced Dining Reservations available 180 days out, this often means planning your dining months before your actual trip. Thus, it’s not unusual to decide which park you will be visiting on each day of your trip several months out, as well. With a Park Hopper, even if you have a dinner reservation at Epcot, you can still spend the morning at a different park and hop over to Epcot when you please.

Be flexible with Extra Magic Hours: These extra hours of park time, available to Disney resort guests for select parks each day, can be great for spending some extra time in the parks but often make the park busier overall for the day. With the Park Hopper, you can visit a different park during the day, and then hop over to take advantage of evening Extra Magic Hours when the crowds are lighter.

Be flexible with half-day visits: If your family wants to spend most of their time at the Magic Kingdom, but still wants to stop by Hollywood Studios to try a few rides, the Park Hopper makes it easy to stop by a park for part of the day, without having to devote the entire day to that park.

When making your day-to-day plans, the possibilities with the Park Hopper seem endless – you could visit all four parks in one day, if you wanted! But you may not want to be that ambitious. When we used the Park Hopper, we planned our days in two parts – a morning park and an evening park, with an afternoon break in between. This made our days easy to plan as we mix-and-matched morning and evening destinations however we wanted, without needing to make sure that our dinner reservation was in the same park as the one we wanted to visit at rope drop.

The Park Hopper also offers some flexibility on the fly. When visiting during a busy season or special event, you may find that your first park packed, so after doing a few rides you can check out a less crowded park for the afternoon and/or evening. If your plans change mid-trip, or a special event takes you by surprise, the Park Hopper is a great tool to have.

The Park Hopper is a great add-on that can really help make the most of your park time, which means more value and less stress!

Find out how the FREE services of a Disney World travel agent can make planning your Disney vacation simple and STRESS FREE!

I’m Elizabeth, and I’m a planner, a vacation enthusiast, and quite the nerd. Even better, I’m dedicated to helping you plan an unforgettable vacation without all the stress. I like to say that I specialize in nerd travel – to me, being a nerd has always meant being unashamedly passionate about the stories I love. This is why I love planning for my favorite destinations – these are places that can take you right into the world of your imagination and make it real. If you’re just a grown-up kid like me, you’ll love these destinations, too. Whether you’re imagining fairytale castles or adventures with wizards and dragons, I can help you make it happen! I’m putting all that I’ve learned about vacation planning and my nerdy love of fantasy to work for you, so that you can write your amazing vacation story. Visit my to learn more about how you can get help planning your next adventure, and come visit me on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram for even more vacation fun and tips. Contact me at to start planning.

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2 Responses to Thrifty Thursday: To Park Hop or Not Park Hop?

  1. Taryn says:

    I am passionate about the Park Hopper! It is one thing that my family just cannot do without and always one of the first things that I recommend to anyone who is planning a Disney trip. Nothing compares to the flexibility and relaxation that comes from knowing we can go wherever we want to, whenever we want to, without being restricted. It is so beyond worth the price!!

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