Walt Disney World will always hold a special place in the heart of military spouse Allie. After all, it’s not every day that your future husband gets down on one knee to propose marriage during the EPCOT fireworks show.
But Allie, a former intern at Innoventions in EPCOT, also loves Disney because of how patriotic and military-friendly they are. And if you’ve ever taken advantage of the great discounts Disney offers military families, you’ll agree.
Thinking about booking a Disney vacation? Before you go, check out the following Disney discounts you can get as well as a few things to keep in mind. (The first thing to keep in mind is to have your military ID. You’ll need a valid ID to redeem all of these deals.)
Through Disney’s Armed Forces Salute program, military personnel can get half off the regular price of tickets to Disney theme parks. These deals are good for all military members, including active duty, National Guard, Reserve, retired military and spouses.
For the 2014-2015 Armed Forces Salute, purchase from August 25, 2014 through September 30, 2015 and Disney offers four-day park hopper tickets to Walt Disney World in Orlando, Florida for $177.00 (add the water park option for $207) and three-day park hopper tickets to Disneyland in Anaheim, California for $132 (which allows you to visit both Disneyland Park and Disney California Adventure Park on the same day). This discount runs from September 28, 2014 through October 3, 2015.
*Current 2013-2014 offer on tickets expire and may not be used after Sept. 27, 2014.*
For the 2013-2014 Armed Forces Salute, Disney offers four-day park hopper tickets to Walt Disney World in Orlando, Florida for $169 (add the water park option for a total of $198) and three-day park hopper tickets to Disneyland in Anaheim, California for $129 (which allows you to visit both Disneyland Park and Disney California Adventure Park on the same day). This discount runs from September 29, 2013 through September 27, 2014.
You can purchase these tickets at your military installations’ ticket office, Shades of Green (see below), or at Disney ticket booths.
Keep in mind: These tickets can’t be combined with other discounts or promotions, they aren’t valid on certain blockout dates, and they’re limited to six tickets. If you purchase the tickets through your military installation or Shades of Green, it’s tax-free, but tax will be added at Disney ticket booths.
2. Disney Hotels
The Disney Armed Forces Salute program also applies to Disney Resort hotels, where military members can get select rooms at 30-40% off the normal rates. This includes a variety of deluxe resorts, moderate resorts, and value resorts at Walt Disney World in Florida. Disneyland Resort hotels in California include Disney’s Paradise Pier Hotel, Disneyland Hotel, and Disney’s Grand Californian Hotel and Spa.
Keep in mind: The number of rooms at the reduced rate is limited, and minimum stay requirements may apply. Just like ticket sales, the discounts on resort rooms are also subject to blockout dates.
3. Extra Magic Hours
Another perk of being a Disney Resort hotel guest is Extra Magic Hours. This allows you early admission to select attractions, stores, entertainment and restaurants during each day of your hotel stay. That’s one extra hour of fun before the park opens to the general public, which is a great way to enjoy a slower pace and shorter lines.
Keep in mind: Each park has an Extra Magic Hour schedule. That means this perk isn’t applicable every day of the week or at every park.
4. Shades of Green
Another option for lodging is Shades of Green. Shades of Green is an Armed Forces Recreation Center (AFRC) in Orlando, Florida. It is a military-owned resort located within Walt Disney World that offers affordable military room rates and discounted tickets for all Disney World venues. It also offers complimentary bus transportation to the Disney World Theme parks and to the Transportation and Ticket Center, as well as the Extra Magic Hours benefit.
5. Disney Cruises
The Disney Cruise Line offers military discounted cruise rates on select sailings. Discounts are typically announced 30-60 days out.
Keep in mind: The discounts are always changing, so visit their website frequently to look for updates.
Have you ever used a military discount to vacation at Disney?
-- Heather Sweeney can be reached at Heather.Sweeney@monster.com.
Click here for a list of more Military.com articles about discounts.
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