The theme park business was decimated in the early months of the COVID-19 pandemic. Disney laid off 32,000 people in its theme part business. Prior to the spread of the virus, Disneyland got 18 million visitors a year. Disney World’s figure is closer to 50 million. At least one American city is virtually built around theme parks. Orlando has Disney and Universal.
Theme parks have been immensely popular, and there has been a traffic surge this year. Disney has raised prices five times in five years, with a cumulative jump of 28%.
To identify America’s most expensive amusement park, 24/7 Tempo reviewed data on prices at major U.S. attractions provided by coupon distribution platform and website DealA. The site compared the current price of a single adult general admission ticket as of December 23, 2021 with the equivalent ticket price in 2017, derived from each museum’s 2017 web pages accessed via the Wayback Machine. If online and in-person ticket prices differed, online prices were used. Automatically applied promotional prices were not considered. When ticket prices differed by day, the starting price of a general admission ticket was used.
One of the reasons these prices are so high is the parks regularly invest in new attractions. For example, SeaWorld has announced a new ride called Ice Breaker that opens on Feb. 18. It will feature “four airtime filled launches, both backwards and forwards, culminating in a reverse launch into the steepest beyond vertical drop in Florida – a 93 feet tall spike with 100 degree angle.”
For people on a tighter budget, At Canobie Lake Park in New Hampshire, for instance, tickets will set you back only $35. At Funland in Rehoboth Beach, Delaware, they’re $30. Cheapest of all is Children’s Fairyland in Oakland, where tickets are a mere $13. That means that a whole family can have a day out there for less than the price of one ticket in several parks in Florida.