After crunching some numbers, it appears that Disney makes approximately $17.4 million dollars per day (from park admission sales tickets) for all four of their major theme parks in Orlando. It’s a mind boggling number, I know, so let’s dive into more specifics for how I arrived at that shocking sticker price.
How Much Does Disney World Make?
Now that we know the estimated number is north of $17 million a day, let’s dive a little into total revenue numbers when you factor in things like parks, products, and overall experiences.
Total Revenues (Parks, Experiences, and Products)
When The Walt Disney Company releases their annual or quarterly financial earnings reports, the total revenues (income) for all the theme parks is categorized as “Parks, Experiences, and Products.” Unfortunately, these figures combine the amounts for all of the Disney Parks, so we don’t have exact amounts for each park at Walt Disney World in Orlando. So do keep in mind that all of the eye popping numbers you see regarding how much the Disney parks earn will be rough estimates and educated guesses.
It’s also important to note that the amounts are not just for the combined park admissions, but also hotel/resort income, Disney cruises, and food, merchandise, etc. sold on the Disney properties.
Still, to give you an idea of how much revenue is generated by the theme parks and experiences, here are some numbers:
The Walt Disney Company’s fiscal year just ended on October 1, 2022 (as of this publication). It was an impressive year for the Disney Parks, with a 73% increase in revenues over the 2021 year end numbers.
The total fiscal year 2022 income from “Parks, Experiences, and Products” for 2022 was a staggering $28 billion dollars. While there are a number of reasons for this big increase over the past fiscal year, much of it can be attributed to the simple fact that attendance at all the Disney theme Parks has been increasing. After the global Covid-19 pandemic, people are ready to go on vacations and explore the world again!
How Much Does Disney World Make Per Park?
So which Disney park makes the most money? Well, here are some estimates on how much each park makes in admission alone, based on data from the Themed Entertainment Association (TEA). These estimates are based on a ticket price of $109 per day (single day ticket), which is the average price for ages 10 and up. Of course, you could pay a little more or a little less, depending on the length of your stay, and if you choose to purchase a park hopper option.
How Much Does Magic Kingdom Make a Day?
Let’s start with the Magic Kingdom. The Magic Kingdom at Walt Disney World is Disney’s most popular theme park out of all of the parks across the globe! The maximum capacity for Magic Kingdom is estimated to be around 90,000 people. In 2022, there were an average of 57,000 visitors per day to this park. Using the average ticket price of $109 per day, those 57,000 guests brought in $6.2 million dollars per day.
How Much Does Epcot Make Each Day?
Epcot is the second most popular theme park at Walt Disney World. Epcot has a larger capacity, with the estimated maximum being approximately 110,000 visitors. In 2022, there were an average of 34,000 guests each day. At an average ticket price of $109, that’s $3.7 million dollars each day.
How Much Does Hollywood Studios Make Everyday?
Hollywood Studios is believed to have a maximum capacity of 60,000 guests each day. In 2022, there were an average of 31,000 people visiting this park each day. Again, using an average ticket price of $109 per day, this means Hollywood Studios generates approximately 3.4 million dollars in admission every day.
How Much Does Animal Kingdom Make a Day?
While the exact maximum capacity for Animal Kingdom isn’t known for sure, it is estimated to be around 60,000 people. In 2022, the attendance was approximately 38,000 guest per day. That means Animal Kingdom brings in an average of $4.1 million dollars each day.
Disney World Revenue vs Operating Expenses
If you add up all these estimates from the four Disney theme parks, it comes to approximately $17.4 million dollars per day in park admissions! If you assume that the parks are open every day of the year (and they are except for extreme emergencies such as hurricanes) that averages to $6.3 billion dollars a year!
Keep in mind, that’s just an estimated revenue from base tickets only; it doesn’t include park hopper options, Genie+/Individual Lightning Lane purchases, parking fees, or the money spent inside the parks buying food and merchandise.
Of course, any discussion of how much money Walt Disney World’s daily revenues should also include a mention of their operating expenses. Operating expenses for the Disney Parks would include amounts for cast member wages, insurance, security, maintenance, utilities, and more.
The total operating expenses for 2022 aren’t available yet, but we can look back at the Disney 2021 Annual Report to get an idea of what operating expenses are like.
How Much Does It Cost to Run Disney World
In 2021, the operating expenses for Disney Parks, Experiences and Products was $10.8 billion dollars. Now keep in mind, that’s the total for all parks, resorts, and cruise ships across the globe (not just Orlando), but it give a good idea of how expensive it is for the Disney Company to operate their theme parks.
Believe it or not, that whopping $10.8 billion figure is actually lower than normal for the parks’ operating expenses! It’s lower for 2021 because Disney was still recovering from lost revenues due to the pandemic. In addition to overall park attendance being lower that year, Disneyland, Disneyland Paris, and Hong Kong Disneyland weren’t open for the full year during 2021. There were fewer cruise ships during that year, too.
2022 is really the first year since the pandemic that Disney Parks are operating at something like normal levels. Once the full 2022 Annual Financial Report is completed and released, it will be interesting to see how the numbers compare to pre-pandemic amounts.
Inflation, Profit, and the High Cost of Disney World
If you’ve read through these impressively high revenue numbers outlined in this article, and you’re working on your budget for a Walt Disney World vacation, you’re probably asking yourself: “why is everything at Disney costing me so much more, when they make so much money?” There’s no one simple answer for that, but let’s take a look at a couple of possible factors:
Have you noticed that everything seems to cost more right now? Groceries, retail shopping, gasoline are daily expenses that are costing more money for all of us. The overly simple reason for this is “Inflation.” Inflation is an economic condition that occurs when there is a broad, overall increase in the price of goods/services, resulting in less buying power for the dollar. This is occurring right now not just here in the United States, but all over the world.
How does inflation affect Walt Disney World? Well, if you’re paying more for food, gasoline, electricity, clothes, office supplies, etc. in your daily life, so is Disney. Like any corporation, they could simply lower their profit margin, but they can also pass some of their increased costs on to the consumer.
Nobody likes the increase in prices, or the fact that Disney now charges guests for things that used to be free, such as hotel parking, complimentary magic bands for anyone staying on property, and transportation service to and from Orlando Airport. Ultimately though, Disney is a corporation that needs to make a profit. It’s no different than any other large corporation in that respect.
2022 is really the first year of “normal” operations since Walt Disney World shut down during the pandemic. In addition to the rise in costs due to widespread inflation, the Disney Parks are still trying to recoup from the loss of several billion dollars in revenues during the Covid pandemic. Park attendance has been steadily growing, so while it’s highly unlikely ticket prices will come down, hopefully there won’t be more significant increases for a while.
It also has to be noted that Disney has been making some significant improvements to their parks over the past few years. Focusing on more immersive type experiences, the high cost of these newer attractions could be part of the reason you’re paying more on you Disney World vacation.
For example, two of the most popular areas are “Pandora: World of Avatar” and “Galaxy’s Edge,” both of which are said to have cost a billion dollars each to create. New attractions mean that guests will keep returning to have new experiences, and Disney spares little expense making sure those experiences are truly memorable.
As stated at the beginning of this article, the answer to how much does Disney World make in a day is a little complicated. The Disney Parks bring in millions of dollars in revenues each day, but there are also high operating expenses to keep the parks running. While Walt Disney World does make a significant profit, they also spend a lot of money to maintain the high quality entertainment experience associated with the Disney brand.
The Disney magic you experience on a Walt Disney World vacation requires a lot of hard work and money to maintain. Although inflation means we’re all paying more for, well, just about everything, the quality of the Disney park experience is still beyond comparison. All that money the Disney Parks bring in each day helps to pay the salaries of the friendly cast members, keep the parks amazingly clean, maintain the rides, supply hungry guests with delicious churros and Dole Whips, care for animals, and shoot off those magical fireworks every night.
There is no other vacation destination where you can fly the Millennium Falcon, meet a Princess, encounter a Yeti on Mount Everest, and survive a visit to a Haunted Mansion all in one week. And, sadly, that one of a kind experience costs a lot of money—for Disney, and certainly for us as guests.
This article was written by Kimberly and edited by Michael.
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