After living in Los Angeles for almost 20 years, I was very used to paying for parking everywhere I went. Going to the mall? Pay for parking. Going to Trader Joe’s? Pay for parking. Going to the beach? Pay for parking. Parking at Disney is no different – UNLESS you are an onsite hotel guest or visiting one of the water parks or Disney Springs!
And if I happened to find the rare parking spot on the street, where I still had to pay the meter, the signage was so confusing that I most likely got a ticket for street cleaning, or it being a Monday… Imagine my surprise in moving to Orlando and coming to the realization that in going to most locations around this city, parking is just that— no extra fees involved. That is, except for when visiting the theme parks.
Parking at Disney World
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Every Disney parking lot costs money (except when parking at Disney Springs, Disney’s Blizzard Beach, Disney’s Typhoon Lagoon, and each of the three mini golf locations). Each of the four theme park parking lots has a sign with the choice of standard parking or preferred parking with the former being twenty-five dollars and the latter being forty-five to fifty dollars depending on the season.
The two nice things are that the price listed is the price you pay (taxes are included) and the parking pass covers all four of the parks’ parking lots for that day. The first time I went to Disney World with my daughter, I knew I’d be paying for standard parking, however, I was surprised to see that the twenty-five dollars was a flat rate.
The receipt broke it down into parking fees and taxes and it all added up to the total of the standard parking rate of twenty-five dollars. Each lot allows campers and oversized vehicles but the cost is slightly higher at thirty dollars.
Parking at Disney World: Getting From The Parking Lot To the Theme Parks
Magic Kingdom and Animal Kingdom have trams that take visitors from the parking lot to the Transportation Center in Magic Kingdom and the main gates at Animal Kingdom. Paying for standard parking at these two parks makes the most sense since no matter where you park, it’s a fairly easy trek to the entrances.
Trams from September 2023 run throughout the parking lots at EPCOT and Hollywood Studios, so preferred parking may be better for those who want a shorter walk into the parks if this is not running during your visit.
For guests who need it, parking for those with disabilities (with a valid disability parking permit) is available at each of the four parks’ parking lots at no additional cost.
Electric Vehicle Parking at Disney World
Newly added electric vehicle charging stations are available at each of the Disney Park Parking Lots. To use the electric vehicle charge stations you will need a credit card or a pre-ordered ChargePoint card.
The cost to charge at these stations is thirty-five cents per kilowatt hour with a minimum service charge of one dollar and fifty cents. Charging will stop when the vehicle’s battery is fully charged and a ping will be sent to the owner’s phone when complete.
There are 5 spots at the Magic Kingdom Parking Lot. One is at the front of the Medical Parking Lot and four at in the Zurg Parking Lot. EPCOT has four spaces at the front of the Journey Parking lot. Disney’s Animal Kingdom has four spots in the Medical Parking Lot.
Disney’s Hollywood Studios has fours spaces at the front of the Mickey Parking Lot and Disney Springs has a total of thirteen spaces:
- Three on the fifth level of the Orange Garage
- Three on the fifth level of the Lime Garage
- Three on the fifth level of the Grapefruit Garage
- Four in the Watermelon lot near the Cirque Du Soleil Theater
Annual Pass Holders And Resort Guests
All of this parking information gets thrown out the window if you are an annual pass holder or if you are a guest at one of the Disney resorts. Standard parking is included with every level of the Disney annual pass as well as registered guests.
If a pass holder or guest would like to upgrade to preferred parking with every visit to the park, the difference can be paid at the entrance to the parking lots.
For those staying on Disney property, note that there used to be Magical Express shuttles to and from the Orlando International airport to all Disney resorts; those shuttles have been discontinued as of 2022. There are, however, different options for making your way to the Disney properties including Uber or renting a car.
When renting a car, parking at each of the Disney hotels is free. Transportation to and from each resort to each Disney park is included in your stay.
And let’s get real, transportation to and from the parks is an adventure in and of itself. Monorail, ferry, bus, and “Minnie” van are just a few of the options in getting from a Disney Resort to a Disney Park.
Staying At The Campsites
Finally, when parking at the Campsites at Disney’s Fort Wilderness Resort, complimentary parking is included for one motorized vehicle for each campsite.
Valet services at Disney resorts at thirty-three dollars per vehicle per night. When entering each resort lot, ask the security host for more information on their current valet availability.
According to the Disney website, “complimentary standard day parking is available while enjoying select dining, shopping, entertainment, and recreation experiences”.
Finally, when visiting the Disney Parks, guests can take advantage of the free parking at Disney Springs, however, additional time needs to be accounted for in getting to each of the Disney Parks.
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