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What you need to know about Preferred Parking at Walt Disney World

What you need to know about Preferred Parking at Walt Disney World

You’ve likely seen the signs for preferred parking at Walt Disney World, but what is it exactly? How does preferred parking at Walt Disney World Work? We’ve answered those questions plus included our own experience below!

What is Walt Disney World Preferred Parking?

Preferred Parking at Walt Disney World, is available at each of the parks: Magic Kingdom, Epcot, Animal Kingdom and Hollywood Studios.

If you are driving to the parks for the day, you need to plan to pay $20 to park in the regular parking spots. So, think it less of a $40 fee to park but rather a $20 parking upgrade.

The parking spots are in the first few rows and you and your family won’t have to ride the tram to get to the front of the park. This is especially helpful for families with strollers or wheelchairs. The reason being you only have to set up the stroller or wheelchair one time instead of once to get to the tram and then only to have to fold it up and unfold it again for the tram ride.

Bonus, if you have to leave the park quickly, to say, catch a flight being near the front and not having to ride the tram to your car in the lot is a game changer.

For annual passholders, standard parking is complementary. Utilizing preferred parking would incur a $20 fee (the upgraded price). That is something for annual passholders to factor in when budgeting for their Disney trip. Do you want to spend $20 extra on parking or Dole whips?

Our Experience with Preferred Parking at Walt Disney World:

On our last day at Disney, we had virtually all day to visit the parks before catching our flight home. This was a unique situation for us as we would need to take advantage of the parking at Walt Disney World.

I could picture us wandering around the vast parking lot looking for our car at the end of the day, missing our flight in the process.

Our first stop of the day was at Epcot, and I noticed when we pulled up, signs for preferred parking. It was $40 compared to the standard $20 to park at the Disney parks.

In a rare moment of being in sync when it comes to a situation like this, the hubs and I looked at each other and said: “let’s try it.”

$40 lighter, we were given a pass to get into the preferred lot. Now, we were arriving right about 9 am which was when the park opened that day, so we were about the 4th aisle from the very front.

As we hopped out of the car we were greeted by a very helpful cast member, who had in her possession a cooler full of ice cold bottles of water. She was a very welcome sight since it was already super hot out.

The plan for our last day with Mickey and friends was simple. We were going to hit three parks Epcot, Hollywood Studios, and the Magic Kingdom with the intent of riding our favorite rides one last time.

Preferred Parking at Walt Disney World

Why we liked preferred parking at Walt Disney World

Getting back to our car efficiently was very important to us, time was key because we would likely be rushing to the car to head for the airport.

Parking using the preferred parking at Epcot allowed us to be the most efficient traveling from park to park. We knew that we would be taking the monorail from the Magic Kingdom back to Epcot where we would get in our car and head out of town.

When we arrived back to Epcot, waiting for us again in the preferred parking area, was the cast member with ice cold waters, within minutes we had gotten from the monorail platform into our car and out of the parking lot.

As we were pulling out, my husband and I commented that we would plan to use Walt Disney World’s preferred parking on the last day from now on.

Tell us: Have you ever considered utilizing preferred parking at Walt Disney World?

What you need to know about preferred parking at Walt Disney World and why I didn't mind paying $40 to park.

Disney World Height Requirements | Family Vacations U.S.

Thursday 6th of August 2020

[…] Take a look at our planning timeline for Disney World For a guide to the Restaurants at Walt Disney World check out our post here.  Read why we happily paid $40 to park at Walt Disney World  […]


Thursday 16th of August 2018

We use preferred last year and it was awesome and I plan to use it again this year. It was worth the $40 for the convenience.


Sunday 19th of August 2018

I really thought so too!


Thursday 30th of November 2017

Yes! We have done it for our last 2 trips to WDW and it absolutely is worth it!!! So close, don't have to walk even more or take the tram. Especially at the end of the day when all you want to do is sit down and leave.