Thursday, February 22, 2018
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With attendance flat, Disney brings back Florida resident deal

After a sluggish year in attendance, Walt Disney World has brought back its Florida resident "Discover Disney" three- and four-day ticket deal, though there are black-out dates at Disney's Animal Kingdom park starting Memorial Day weekend — a possible sign the new Avatar land will be opening up.

The Discover Disney ticket lets Florida residents visit all four Disney World parks from now though June 9, for $139. Sorry snowbirds, out-of-state tourists have to pay $290 for the same ticket. And it is a price break from the usual $185 three-day ticket for Florida residents.

The tickets must be used by June 9. The only restriction is that the ticket can't be used at Disney's Animal Kingdom starting on May 27, a possible indication that the grand opening of Pandora — The World of Avatar.

Disney has said the project to bring James Cameron's ambitious movie to life would open this summer, so Memorial Day weekend could be the start.

Florida residents had gotten used to the annual January offer from Disney, once as low as $99 for to visit all four parks. But the annual January deal disappeared last year amid record attendance numbers. Instead, the theme park giant offered a three-day pass for $189 that was good through mid-December with summer black-out dates.

But 2016 saw attendance fall as prices rose at Disney under a new tiered pricing system that charged more during peak travel periods. The whole theme park industry was rocked by a summer of bad news including an alligator attack on a toddler at a Disney resort, the Zika virus in Florida and soft economies in Latin America, especially Brazil.

This year's $139 Discover Disney promotion is the same price as the one Disney offered in 2015. And for an additional $20, Floridians can add a fourth day to the offer, and the deal can be turned into park-hoppers to visit more than one park per day for $27.50 on the three-day plan and for $34.50 with the four-day ticket.

Florida residents can also find hotel packages at Disney hotels, valid for stays most nights from Feb. 20 through June 10. Go to disneyworld.com.

Contact Sharon Kennedy Wynne at [email protected] Follow @SharonKWn.

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