Disneyland Magic Key Pass: The Ultimate Guide From an Avid Park Goer and Pass Holder

A colorfully-dressed barbershop quartet standing outside on Disneyland's Main Street.

Find out everything you need to know about the Disneyland Magic Key Pass from someone who uses it all the time.

As someone who has been a Disneyland annual pass holder for over five years, I find myself close to all Disney news. 

I’m a fountain of Disneyland knowledge, including nuanced details about the Disneyland Magic Key program and the Disneyland park reservation-based admission system. 

Magic Key Pass holders receive a lot of special benefits, but with multiple tiers, limited availability, and block-out dates, things might get confusing. 

This is especially the case if you’re new to the world of Disneyland Magic Keys. 

I know how daunting it sometimes feels to look through the different Magic Key tiers and determine what’s worth springing for. That’s why I wanted to write this article. 

Read on for all my tips on navigating Magic Key benefits to get the most out of a pass to the Happiest Place on Earth.

Note: this post contains affiliate links, which help run this site at no extra cost to you so I can keep providing free travel advice and tips.

People, who may have used the Disneyland Magic Key Pass, walking through Disneyland under an overcast sky.

What is the Magic Key & How Does it Work?

A view of Disneyland from afar and slightly above, showing roller coasters, palm trees, and a light sunset in the background.

The Disneyland Magic Key is the new Disneyland annual pass program! Think of it like a Disneyland season pass that also gives you VIP benefits and discounts.

With Magic Keys, you can reserve days to visit the parks and get discounts on merchandise, dining, parking (currently $30 per car or motorcycle), and services like Genie+ and PhotoPass. 

Simply put, various Magic Keys allow for different levels of park access. 

The pricier key passes have fewer block-out dates and more benefits. 

The less expensive keys come with more block-out dates, meaning you’ll only be able to visit the theme parks on select days out of the year.

Maybe you plan on making day-long or week-long trips to visit several times throughout the year. 

Or you’re a local (like me) who likes to pop into the parks for a few hours here and there. Regardless, you can make an annual pass work for you. 

If you opt for a higher-tier pass, you’ll need to ensure the Disneyland annual pass price will be worth the number of visits you plan on making. 

Luckily (or not), that’s easier to accomplish nowadays, as costs add up quickly without a Magic Key. 

For example, a single-day ticket for a single park starts at $104. You can also add the Park Hopper option for $65 to visit both Disneyland and Disney’s California Adventure. 

With a Magic Key, you can visit both parks in one day when you hold a reservation, which is a $169 value. And that’s not accounting for food and merchandise.

Another important thing to note is that Disneyland Magic Keys aren’t always freely available. 

To limit overcrowding, new sales for these Disneyland annual passes are available periodically and sell out quickly. 

At any given time, you won’t be able to purchase certain tiers unless you’re already a Magic Key holder.

Still, if you’re considering a new Magic Key pass, it’s a good idea to do your research ahead of time, and then keep your ear out for when your desired annual pass becomes available.

Below, I’ve laid out all the benefits and differences between each tier.

What Does the Magic Key Disneyland Pass Give You? What are its Key Benefits? How Much Does it Cost?

An outdoor eating area in Disneyland with trees forming a canopy of leaves overhead.
Anaheim, Ca / USA – 12/24/18 Empty dining area next to Goofy’s Fly School

Inspire Key [Previously Called the Dream Key]

Cost: $1599

  • You can hold up to six theme park reservations at a time.
  • It has the fewest block-out dates of any Magic Key, currently just December 20th, 2023 – January 2nd, 2024. 
  • Discount of 20% Genie+ service on days you use your pass for park admission.
  • Discount of up to 20% on select merchandise.
  • Discount of up to 15% on select dining locations.
  • Disney PhotoPass digital photo downloads, including photos taken on rides AND posed photos taken by PhotoPass photographers (even with characters!) at different locations in the parks.
  • It includes standard theme park parking at Mickey & Friends and Pixar Pals Parking Structures or the Toy Story Parking Area.

Believe Key [Currently Available For Renewal Only]

Cost: $1099

  • Hold up to six theme park reservations at a time.
  • Block-out days on some peak weekends, weekdays, and holidays, including April 1st – 9th, 2023, Memorial Day, 4th of July, Thanksgiving, and a more significant chunk of December 20th, 2023 – January 3rd, 2024
  • Discount of 20% Genie+ service on days you use your pass for park admission.
  • Discount of up to 10% on select merchandise.
  • Discount of up to 10% on select dining locations.
  • Discount of up to 50% on standard theme park parking at Mickey & Friends and Pixar Pals Parking Structures or the Toy Story Parking Area.
  • Disney PhotoPass digital photo downloads, including photos taken on rides AND posed photos taken by PhotoPass photographers (even with characters!) at different locations in the parks.

Enchant Key [Currently Available For Renewal Only]

Cost: $599

  • Hold up to four theme park reservations at a time.
  • The same block-out dates listed above for the Believe Key, plus most Saturdays, almost the entire month of June, all of July, and August 1st-13th.
  • Discount of 20% Genie+ service on days you use your pass for park admission.
  • Discount of up to 10% on select merchandise.
  • Discount of up to 10% on select dining locations.
  • Discount of up to 25% on standard theme park parking at Toy Story Parking.

Imagine Key [Currently Available For Renewal Only] 

When available, only applies to Southern California Residents living in zip codes 90000 – 93599.

Cost: $599

  • Hold up to two theme park reservations at a time.
  • The same block-out days listed above, plus most Fridays – Sundays, the entire months of June and July, and most of August, October, and November, as well as the entire month of December.
  • Discount of 20% Genie+ service on days you use your pass for park admission.
  • Discount of up to 10% on select merchandise.
  • Discount of up to 10% on select dining locations.
  • Discount of up to 25% on standard theme park parking at Toy Story Parking.

Types of Magic Key Passes

A crowd of people moving through Disneyland on a sunny day, with a blue Disneyland sign in the background.

Some benefits are available to all Magic Key holders, which you can find on the Magic Key Portal in your Disneyland app. 

These benefits include park hopping ability between Disneyland and Disney California Adventure parks and entrance to an exclusive Magic Key Terrace dining area.

You’ll also get access to special experiences, discounts, and collectibles, such as pins and PhotoPass opportunities.  

Inspire Key [Previously known as the Dream Key]

The Inspire Key is the highest tier option at $1,599 annually or $118.34 each month after a $179 down payment when using the monthly payment plan.

This option offers the most flexibility for visiting with the fewest Magic Key block-out dates. 

It also includes parking at the theme park parking structures. 

Knowing that you’re not paying $15-$30 to park each time takes some stress out of your regular visits. 

If you know you have parking paid for, it’s one less thing you have to shell out for during your day.

Another perk is that you’ll be the best host to out-of-town visitors who need an expert Disneyland-goer. 

You can drive them to and from the parks, show them around, and treat them to discounted Disneyland merchandise and dining. 

If you’re within driving distance from Disneyland and plan on making at least nine visits per year, this is a great option.

It takes care of some costs upfront and makes your park days feel more all-inclusive. 

Believe Key  

The Believe Key is the next Magic Key tier at $1,099 annually. 

It’s an excellent option for frequent visitors who will be making at least seven day-long trips throughout the year or want the flexibility to come more often for shorter days. 

Suppose you’re a local with a schedule that makes traveling outside of holidays and peak times possible. 

In that case, you can take advantage of the many days still available for park reservations and have some discount perks on parking, dining, and merchandise. 

Enchant Key 

The Enchant Key is the middle tier for available season passes. The Enchant Key will run you $699 annually, but it’s currently unavailable for purchase. 

Current Magic Key holders can renew their Enchant Key at this price point for another year during your renewal window.

Imagine Key

The Imagine Key is the most affordable pass at $449 annually, but it’s also currently unavailable for purchase. 

Current Magic Key holders can renew their Disneyland Imagine Key if it’s within 30 days of the pass’s expiration date. 

When the Disneyland Imagine Key is up for sale, it’s only available to Southern California residents in the zip codes 90000-93599. 

This option is great if you’re a local who wants to skip the more crowded weekend days in favor of casual weeknight visits. 

Or if you want to play hooky from work for a few full-day excursions a year. 

Note: You can compare the benefits of all the passes side-by-side here

Magic Key Pass Calendar, Block Out Dates & Reservations

Crowds of people waiting in line for the Pirates of the Caribbean ride in Disneyland.

You can view block-out dates and Magic Key reservation availability on the Magic Key Calendar. This dynamic calendar shows the day-to-day availability. 

You can access the calendar and make theme park reservations with your Disneyland app.

If your desired park is unavailable for reservation on a particular day, but the other park is, you may want to go ahead and snag the reservation. 

As of February 4th, 2023, you can park hop beginning at 11 am. 

How does that work, exactly? 

Well, say you had your heart set on going to the Avenger’s Campus in the Disney California Adventure park (DCA) but made a reservation for the Disneyland park. 

Now, you can still enter DCA starting at 11 am, regardless of whether you choose to scan into Disneyland beforehand.

If you’re planning on going to the Disneyland Resort and there’s no reservation availability, check back on the days leading up to your desired date. 

You never know when other pass holders might cancel their existing park reservations.

If you can’t make it to the park on a day you previously reserved, you can cancel your reservation by 11:59 pm Pacific Time the day before to avoid being considered a no-show. 

You can also avoid one of these “strikes” by entering a park before closing. 

I occasionally see people scanning in before hanging a U-turn as I’m leaving for the evening, so they’re not considered a no-show.

If you’re a no-show for three Disneyland reservations in a 90-day window, you’ll end up in a timeout, and you’ll be unable to make new park reservations for 30 days. 

However, if you had an existing park reservation for those 30 days, they won’t cancel it, and you can still visit as planned.

Where & How to Purchase the Magic Key

You can purchase new Magic Key passes on the Disneyland website and app, but they aren’t always up for sale. 

In order to limit overcrowding, Disneyland limits Magic Key sales, making them available in limited quantities for limited times. 

If you’re on the lookout to purchase Disneyland Magic Key passes, I have some suggestions for snagging one as soon as it becomes available:

  • Follow Disneyland’s social media accounts and blogs. These are the first places I see news about pass availability. 
  • Let your Disneyland-going friends and family know you’re looking to purchase. The more eyes you have to alert you, the better.
  • Be ready to use multiple devices. When Magic Key passes become available, there’s usually a virtual queue system. The more devices you have in the queue, the more chance you have of snagging a pass. 
  • The same goes for your friends and family too. If they can jump in the virtual queue when you’re unable to, you can use their spot in line to purchase a pass, so you don’t miss your chance.

It’s much easier once you snag one since renewing the Magic Key pass online is possible for current key holders even when new passes aren’t for sale.

Magic Key Pass Discounts & Coupons

There aren’t currently any sales or discounts on Magic Key passes. 

However, you could effectively save a little money by purchasing a discount ticket to the parks and then upgrading to the Magic Key program. 

In the past, you’ve been able to apply the total value of your day ticket (even if you purchased it at a discounted rate) to the purchase price of an annual pass. 

If you want to go this route, check with one of the helpful cast members at guest services in person or online for more information before purchasing. 

I’m not sure if this is still a possibility now that Magic Key sales have moved to be online only instead of also having the option to buy in-person.

Monthly payment plan options are also available for California residents. However, you must be logged into your Disneyland Resort account to see this option. 

You’ll have to make a down payment at the time of purchase, regardless of which Magic Key pass type you choose to purchase or whether you’re paying upfront or monthly. 

Also available to Southern California residents is the Special Southern California Resident Ticket, which allows 3-Day, 1-Park Per Day Tickets for just $219.

Just note that reservations are still required for this ticket, and admission is only available on weekdays. 

This deal is only eligible for those living in 90000- 93599 zip codes and Northern Baja California residents within 21000-22999 zip codes. You can click on the link above for more details.

FAQs About the Disneyland Magic Key Pass

Crowds of people with the pink and blue Disneyland magic castle in the background.

Are Magic Key passes coming back? Why did Disneyland stop selling them?

New pass sales are available from time to time as Disneyland sees fit. 

They reportedly paused the sale of new Magic Keys due to high demand “to help protect the experience for Magic Key holders and the value those passes provide.” 

Annual pass holders used to be able to visit Disneyland without restrictions, which resulted in huge crowds.  

Because of this, Disneyland decided to make some changes to its annual pass program.

The pauses on certain pass types, along with the reservation-based admission, have helped cut down on crowds. 

Is the Magic Key the same as the annual pass?

The Magic Key Pass Program replaced the previous Disneyland Annual Passes Program.

Do Magic Key Passes sell out?

Yes. Due to purchase availability and high demand, Magic Key Passes sell out quickly. New sales of Disneyland Magic Key annual passes are limited to curb the crowds.

Which Magic Key Pass is the best?

The best Magic Key tier is the one that works best for your anticipated frequency of visits to the Disney theme parks. 

Key holders who live locally might want to spring for a higher-tier pass, while those who want to make the most of their few yearly visits might benefit from a lower tier.

Can you bring a guest with the Magic Key Pass?

No, Magic Keys are only valid for the Magic Key holder. 

With that said, pass holders can bring guests to the Magic Key Terrace if the guest already has a valid theme park ticket. 

Can I let someone use my Magic Key Pass?

Once you activate your Magic Key, you’ll have your picture taken so they can verify you when you scan for entry into the park. Magic Keys are non-transferable. 

You can, however, bring guests to the Magic Key Terrace as long as they have valid theme park tickets and a reservation on the same date. 

Each Disneyland Magic Key holder can bring one guest to the terrace.

Can you go to both theme parks with the Magic Key Pass?

You can park hop between Disneyland and DCA starting at 11 am each day with a valid Magic Key pass. This benefit is available to all Magic Key pass holders.

Can you use the Magic Key Pass for Walt Disney World? How about at Disneylands in other countries?

The Disneyland Magic Key Program is valid for entry to Disneyland and the Disney California Adventure Park theme parks. 

Currently, there’s no pass available for combined entry into Disneyland and Walt Disney World or any of the Disneyland locations abroad. 

Which Magic Key Pass is the cheapest?

When it’s available for purchase, the Imagine Key costs $449/year, making it the least expensive of the Disneyland Magic Keys.

How many times can you go to Disneyland with the Magic Key Pass?

You can visit the parks as often as you like as long as you have a theme park reservation, which is subject to availability and the block-out dates of your pass type.

How do you renew your Magic Key Pass?

If you’re within your renewal window 30 days before your pass expires, you can renew on Disneyland.com/renew. 

You will need to sign into your Disney account, and then you can renew your current pass, upgrade, or downgrade to one of the different pass types, subject to availability.

The Dream Key wasn’t eligible for renewal when that expiration window came up. Instead, Magic Key Holders could choose to renew to the Inspire Key, which is now the top tier.

Does the Magic Key Pass include parking?

The Inspire Key includes standard theme park parking. 

The Believe Key offers 50% off, and the Enchant and Imagine Keys offer a discount of up to 25% on standard theme park parking at just Toy Story Parking.

What’s the difference between the Magic Key in 2022 vs 2023?

In 2023, the highest-tier pass changed its name from the Dream Key to the Inspire Key. 

This change comes with block-out dates during the popular Christmas holiday season, whereas the Dream Key previously had no block-out dates. 

So, is the Magic Key Pass Worth it?

If you’re willing to make it work for you, the Magic Key is definitely worth it. 

As someone local to the parks, I love the flexibility of going for a quick morning visit, leaving before lunch, or popping in for a dinner date and a ride or two on a weeknight. 

The reservation availability and block-out dates for the Believe Key (the pass I have), make it easy to go for same-day or casual visits. 

And it also gives me the ability to easily join friends or family on their vacations to the Disneyland Resort. 

If you’re coming from out of town once or twice a year and won’t be driving to the parks (maybe your hotel has a shuttle or is within walking distance), the Magic Key pass price may not make financial sense. 

You’d have to do some calculations based on how many people are visiting in your group. 

If the dining, merchandise, and Genie+ discounts provide enough savings based on your priorities for the day(s) you’re visiting, the pass will still be worth it.

The bottom line is that the Magic Key program is worth it for the right candidates. 

I personally love having the Believe Key Pass, but it just depends on how often you want to visit the parks and if you’ll take advantage of the benefits thebe pass offers. 


A light-haired woman smiling and wearing Minnie Mouse ears.

Wendy Mehra

Wendy is a park-lover based in Southern California. Whether it’s national, state, or theme parks, she enjoys exploring them all! As a Magic Key Holder and regular park visitor, she gets all the new info on Disney news and has lots of tips and tricks for enjoying your day at the Happiest Place on Earth.

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Disneyland Magic Key Pass: The Ultimate Guide From an Avid Park Goer and Pass Holder

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