5 ways to enjoy Hong Kong Disneyland without going broke

Welcome to Hong Kong Disneyland, the happiest place on earth!

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Finally, you’re about to make your childhood dream come true and meet Mickey and the gang, dance with the princesses, play with Woody and Alan, watch Lion King live, and sing and dance with Moana and Maui! As a bonus, you can also see Iron Man in the, well, iron and hide out in the Star Wars rebel base with R2D2 and Chewbacca!

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Festival of the Lion King show (Adventureland) at Hong Kong Disneyland @rigorism Instagram

All is well right?! Only, what they don’t tell you is that Hong Kong Disneyland is the most expensive attraction in Hong Kong, both for the tickets and during the time you’re happily trapped inside (for maximum of 11 hours).

Flights of Fantasy Parade at Hong Kong Disneyland

Don’t fret. Being the kuripot (value-for-money spender) that I am, I’ve compiled a list of ways to enjoy Hong Kong Disneyland without going broke — all tried and tested not just by me and my family but by friends with their own kids and other travelers who have come our way.

1. Check for discounted tickets online

It’s cheaper and faster when you buy your tickets online, before you arrive at HK Disneyland. You can check the Hong Kong Disneyland promo page or buy discounted or combo tickets from Klook.com.

The regular one day ticket for Hong Kong Disneyland is priced at HKD639 (that’s about PhP 4300 or USD 83). It’s a lot of money! Good thing children below 3 can enter free and there’s a child ticket discount too! Senior citizens who are 65 years old and above only pay HKD100. And, luckily for us regular adults but super bargain hunters, Hong Kong Disneyland sometimes has promotional offers for tickets.

Hong Kong Disneyland park ticket prices and promotions HK Disneyland website

My favorite is the Magic Access “Bring A Friend” offer. Magic Access is Hong Kong Disneyland’s annual pass program which gives a pass holder access to the park all-year long, with blockout dates (or thou shall not enter days) depending on your tier. Our family has the silver magic access pass (the cheapest, weekday only, and no public holidays allowed) and with the Magic Access Bring a Friend offer, we can buy the one day ticket at a discounted price of HKD 439, giving them HKD200 discount (PhP 1300 or USD 25).

Hong Kong Disneyland Magic Access “Bring a Friend” promotion from HK Disneyland website

With the silver Magic Access card, we can buy maximum two tickets for our guests per day (4 for gold and 5 for platinum). So, if you know anyone who has a pass, convince them to go and enjoy Hong Kong Disneyland with you. It’s a requirement that both pass holder and guests go together to avail of the promotion. This promo is until July 14, 2019 for this year. (maybe send me a shoutout if you’re planning to go on a weekday before the promo ends and let’s see if our schedules will work out)

Another personal favorite for discounted Hong Kong Disneyland tickets and other attractions is Klook.com, a discount/voucher platform especially for travelers (the link to Klook is my referral code, which will give both you and me some “money” (booking credit) when you sign up and book activities: win-win!). When the Magic Access “Bring A Friend” offer ends, we usually direct our visiting guests and friends to Klook.

Hong Kong Disneyland Park ticket from discount voucher site Klook.com

The current price (April 2019) for a one-day direct entry ticket is HKD543, which you can buy even when you’re already on the train to Disneyland Resort (as long as your credit card or payment options allow for international mobile transactions of course). A 2-day Klook voucher ticket to HK Disneyland is HKD719 (HKD 825 from Disneyland site), which is a good deal so you won’t have to stress over covering all of the attractions at once.

They have other options for ticket+meals at only HKD678 (HKD755 from Disneyland site) or a 2-day ticket+shopping voucher for HKD 699. There’s many options so check the fine print or terms and conditions for each when you check out the Klook page (and don’t forget my referral code when you sign up!)

2. Bring your own water tumbler

Bottled drinking water inside Disneyland costs HKD20+ for 500ml. Yep, let that sink in. PhP150+ or USD3+ for half a liter of drinking water. Crazy, right?! The good thing is, and I swear not many people know this, you can actually bring a water tumbler and just refill it through the many drinking stations spread throughout Hong Kong Disneyland, especially next to most of the washrooms.

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I’m not sure how strict they are about the containers but we usually bring in transparent, non-glass water bottles. I bring in even a 1L one and we’ve never been told off. We’ve also brought in a tin tumbler and there were no issues at the time but it’s better to have a transparent one just to be sure.

3. Bring fruits and bread

While bringing in cooked meals are not allowed, they won’t stop you from bringing fruits and light snack like bread and biscuits or cookies, even small sandwiches. We’ve also managed to bring inside fruit juices and milk for the kids. In some ninja mode opportunities, I managed to sneak in pizza slices, salad wraps and quesadilla. 😂 Keep in mind though that they can be really strict in checking the bags.

There’s no supermarket or convenience stores like 7-11 or Circle K at Sunny Bay and Disneyland Resort MTR stations. So if you’re bringing in stuff, make sure to buy these before beginning your journey to Hong Kong Disneyland. Good place to shop with options are Tsim Sha Tsui area especially for fruits (but that’s like almost 1.5 hours to Disneyland) or at Hong Kong MTR station (or Central) (approximately 1 hour to HK Disneyland). You can also take the extra 5 minutes from Sunny Bay MTR to Tung Chung MTR and buy supplies without exiting the station (but don’t eat inside the train or station). If you’re coming directly from the airport, there’s also some convenience stores at the arrivals area where you can have some sit-down meal or to-go food and drinks before getting on the bus or the train to Disneyland.

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The very cute Hong Kong Disneyland Resort train with the iconic Mickey Mouse window

Your last bet when using the MTR to HK Disneyland would be Lai King (if changing trains from the red line to the orange line) or at Tsing Yi (get off the train, buy stuff, get on the next train) which is the last stop before Sunny Bay. And, when it’s the eleventh hour, the final opportunity for a quick hotdog bite and cold drink would be HKD50 on the food cart a few meters’s walk on the left side of the Welcome to Disneyland arch and rice topping-style lunchboxes and drinks (usually HKD60+ range) on the right side.

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Rice bowl menu from the food carts. You can find the food carts on the right side of the walkway between the train station and the main entrance gate (it’s a long walk)

 

4. Buy meal vouchers from Klook or direct from HK Disneyland

Some say man can’t live on bread alone. So, if you have committed to maximise the 11-hours of park time at Hong Kong Disneyland, and if you can’t survive on finger food the whole day like me, buy meal vouchers from Klook. (Please use my code above!)

Fine print of the Klook.com meal vouchers

You have two options:

  • 2-in-1: one meal (lunch OR dinner) and one snack (popcorn or frozen lollipop aka ice cream aka popsicle)
  • 3-in-1: two meals (lunch AND dinner) and one snack (same as 2-in-1)

We’ve only tried the 2-in1 since we only either go early and have lunch there and not make it to dinner, or we eat lunch at home before going there and then staying late and having dinner. Klook also has a ticket and meal voucher combo which supposedly helps you save more. Don’t fret, if you forgot to buy this, you can still buy the voucher from Hong Kong Disneyland.

The reason why I’m recommending the meal vouchers (whether from Klook or from HK Disneyland) is because of it’s value-for-money. Meal combos (main course and drink) in Hong Kong Disneyland range from HKD90 to 155. The popcorn is HKD35 and the ice cream is around HKD40.

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poster girl for the minnie mouse strawberry ice cream

To get the most of the value, I’d suggest you head on over to the Royal Banquet Hall and buy from the Grill food station. We usually get either the char-grilled beef steak combo or the signature mixed-grill combo. It’s HKD 155 so you just have to add HKD15 coz the meal voucher’s limit is HKD25. You can also add HKD4 to get a bigger-sized soda cup.

Menu options for the Grill station inside the Royal Banquet Hall

One order can be good enough for two adults, with the meat and the veggie sides. No rice for this combo though, only french fries. If you’re missing rice, you can always check out the menu of the Japan, Guang Dong (Chinese) and International (Western with a bit of Asian flavor) food stations (or try these for your dinner if you got the 3-in-1 option). You can also check the other restaurants (Explorer’s club serve Asian, Halal, and vegetarian meals. When you maximize the use of the voucher to buy the combos, the popcorn or the ice cream becomes like a free item!

Some tips when using meal vouchers:

  • Claim your Klook meal vouchers at the entrance of the Hong Kong Disneyland (same area where you present your ticket). You don’t want to be starving in the middle of the park (where the Royal Banquet Hall is) and realize that you don’t have your meal voucher.
Remember to claim your Disneyland Park ticket and meal voucher at the main entrance. This map is from the voucher that Klook will send directly to your email.
  • Keep your vouchers after presenting it to the snack kiosk or the restaurant cashier around Disneyland! You only have one voucher for all the meals and snacks (2-in-1 or 3-in-1). They will just scan it when you avail of the snack or meal so make sure to get it back after. Otherwise, you may not be able to claim your remaining snack or meal!
  • Read the fine print for the validity of the meal voucher either from HK Disneyland or from Klook. There’s also the time limit for lunch and dinner service hours you should take note of. So watch out for that.

5. Don’t be tempted by the Priority Admission pass. Use the Disneyland fastpass and plan your day in advance instead

Hong Kong Disneyland has a new promotion with the special priority admission pass for it’s main attractions. This priority admission pass will allow you to skip the queue and head on straight to the front of the line. It will save you time but it’s going to cost you. There’s two pass types: “priority admission” and “priority admission+” (plus).

Details of the priority admission pass for attractions from the Hong Kong Disneyland website

Priority admission lets you jump the line for 3 out of 5 of attractions. You can choose from Big Grizzly Mountain Runaway Mine Cars, Ant-Man and The Wasp: Nano Battle! (Newest, we haven’t tried this yet), Mystic Manor, Iron Man Experience, and Mickey’s PhilharMagic. The priority admission will cost you and extra HKD199.

Priority admission+ (plus) lets you go once in front of the queue of all of these eight attractions: Big Grizzly Mountain Runaway Mine Cars, Ant-Man and The Wasp: Nano Battle!, Mystic Manor, Iron Man Experience, Mickey’s PhilharMagic, The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh, Toy Soldier Parachute Drop, Slinky Dog Spin. The priority admission+ will cost you HKD 299.

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The toy soldier parachute drop ride at HK Disneyland

From all these, I’d say that based on experience, the really long queue is only with the Big Grizzly ride (like a roller coaster) and the Toy Soldier Parachute Drop. Not sure about weekends but on weekdays, go there around 630/645 (after the last Lion King show at Adventureland) and you can go on these rides with short queue. (Note that ride usually close 7pm).

Haven’t gone inside the Mystic Manor (you’d pass it between Big Grizzly ride and Toy soldier ride) but there’s hardly any people there. Slinky Dog Spin (same Toy Story Land area as parachute drop) is also usually empty in the later hours of the day.

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Getting ready for the PhilharMagic mini-musical movie show

PhilharMagic show over at Fantasyland is like every 10-15 minutes so it’s easy to get inside this 4D theatre experience (great for kids). There’s a free fastpass for Winnie the Pooh (Fantasyland) and for Hyperspace Mountain (indoor roller coaster) (Tomorrowland). The Iron Man experience (Tomorrowland) can take around 40 people or so in one 5D ride so the wait time isn’t that long either. I don’t know about the Ant Man attraction yet (will try next time we visit) so I can’t tell if it’s worth it.

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The Iron Man experience is a walk-through in a Stark exhibit and a 5D ride, hosted by JARVIS. Kids need to be at least 102cm to go on this ride.

I mean, if you have the money, of course, go for it! But if you don’t, I’d recommend that you just maximise your fastpass and plan your day well. You can download the Hong Kong Disneyland app to check out the show times, attraction queue, and map of Disneyland so you’d know where and how to go. My friend also said that there’s a special pass for person with disability and companion while in the park. I haven’t tried this so if you are with a PWD, ask at the ticket counter or at the park’s guest relations office (once inside, take the short tunnel to the left, it’s the first or second building).

Now, if Disneyland made the priority admission+ pass that lets you be the first for photo opportunities with Mickey and Minnie and all the characters, or the princesses, or Dumbo elephant ride, or the River cruise, then you can consider. These are the attractions with the usual long lines. We queued for a photo with Mickey and Minnie and it ate almost 2 hours of our park time!

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Finally, with Mickey and Minnie! worth it naman kahit mainit!

These are five of our tried and tested ways to enjoy Hong Kong Disneyland without going broke. It could really get expensive out there. As Hong Kong, in general, is an expensive city, make sure that every Peso, HKD, Euro, or USD counts!

Hope this post gave you some good tips and tricks to enjoy every minute in the happiest place on Earth! Let me know if you have other ways to enjoy Hong Kong Disneyland without spending a fortune and I’d be sure to give it a try!

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