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Disney raises theme park prices for summer

June 13, 2011 |  1:23 pm

Disney As the summer tourist season begins, the Walt Disney Co. announced an increase in ticket prices at Walt Disney World Resort in Orlando and Disneyland Resort in Anaheim.

As of Sunday, one-day passes for the Disney theme parks in Anaheim increased 5.3%, from $76 to $80. A three-day pass to visit Disneyland and nearby Disney California Adventure Park jumped 8.7%, from $206 to $224. Annual passes for Southern California residents, among the most popular ticket option, increased 8.1%, from $184 to $199.

A Disney spokeswoman said the price increases were the result of a regular evaluation of rates and were not in response to the opening of new attractions this summer.

This summer, visitors to the Disney theme parks in Anaheim can ride the new Little Mermaid: Ariel's Undersea Adventure attraction, which opened this month at Disney California Adventure Park. At Disneyland, visitors can try the newly refurbished Star Tours attraction, which also launched this month.

The higher prices are unlikely to discourage ardent Disney fans from visiting the parks, said Robert Niles, author of Theme Park Insider, an online guide to the nation's most popular theme parks.

"If you're an out-of-town guest, four extra bucks is not going to make a difference in determining if you are taking a vacation in Anaheim," he said.

Niles said the new attractions are already drawing huge crowds, particularly Star Tours, for which guest have waited up to two hours in line to ride.

One possible reason for the long lines: Star Tours, based on the "Star Wars" movies,  offers 54 different experiences, randomly chosen for each guest. So it likely most fans are going to try the attraction more than once.


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Photo: Disneyland and Disney California Adventure park in Anaheim, California. Credit: Joshua Sudock / AP