Is an annual pass to SeaWorld Orlando theme park worth it?

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If you’ve ever looked to purchase tickets for SeaWorld Orlando theme park, then you may have noticed they have a lot of ticket options.  I know a lot of you have a lot of questions.  And as someone whose family has been annual pass holders for many years now, I wanted to answer these for you.

Personally, my family loves the annual pass option and of the big three Orlando theme parks (Disney World, SeaWorld, and Universal), we like this annual pass option the best.  We’re going to go over why while answering your questions today.

How Does SeaWorld Annual Pass Work?

One of the reasons why I like SeaWorld’s annual pass the best is the way it works.  You have the option of paying for it all at once.  Or you can do what my family does.  We pay month by month.  We are on auto-pay so it automatically charges us per month.  I like this option because unlike with a Disney World annual pass, we don’t have to pay all upfront at once.  It is much better for budgeting purposes.

Whether you pay month by month or you pay all at once, the annual pass lasts for twelve months.  This makes it a bit different than a Fun Card.  A Fun Card to SeaWorld gets you unlimited visits (with the exception of some blackout dates on popular days – more about that later) throughout a calendar year.  So if you bought it now, you could get free admission through 2022.  This can be a great option if you are planning just one long trip to Orlando and you want to visit on multiple dates throughout 2022.  Or you live nearby and just want the option to drop by some weekends.  The Fun Card is cheaper than the Annual Pass.  You can get the Fun Card here.

But why in my opinion an Annual Pass is much superior is all the many, many perks an Annual Pass gets you.  All these perks add and make the Annual Pass a much better economical choice, in my opinion.  And can make your trip much better.  The perks depend on which annual pass you by: Bronze, Silver, Gold, and Platinum.  I’ll go over the different perks and what you get with each annual pass option below.

Does SeaWorld Annual Pass Include Parking?

This is by far the main reason why I love the annual pass.  Parking for SeaWorld can get really expensive.  It’s dynamic and is more expensive on popular days.  So that is why I love getting the annual pass.

Although here is the thing – it is actually not included in all annual pass options.  That is why I don’t recommend getting the cheapest annual pass option, which is the Bronze Plan.  You really should pay a little bit more, because all other passes include parking.

The next level up is the Silver Pass, and that gets you free general parking.  You can also get an upgrade to preferred parking for 50% off.

But if you go up to the Gold or Platinum option, that’s when you get free preferred parking.  This is a really nice option.  It’s really nice at the end of the day to be able to not have to walk even more to find your parking spot.

Do SeaWorld Passholders Get Discounted Dining & Merchandise?

Here is the other gigantic perk of being a pass holder.  And that is the in-park discounts.

Because at some point during your day at SeaWorld, you’ll probably end up buying food and drinks.  And like all food and dining options these days, eating and drinking there can get quite expensive.

But you can save money every time you buy someone when you are an annual pass holder!  Now, unfortunately, if you just have the Bronze Pass, you don’t get any discount.  But you can save 10% with the Silver Pass, 15% with the Gold Pass, and 20% with the Platinum Pass.  This can be extremely helpful, especially during all the festivals with the great foods and drinks (like the Seven Seas Food Festival).

You can also get some great merchandise discounts.  I often end up buying merchandise when I am there because they have a lot of great stuff, and they are pretty reasonably priced.  But they are priced even better when you take into account the discounts:

  • Bronze Members: 10%
  • Silver Members: 20%
  • Gold Members: 30%
  • Platinum Members: 40%

You can also save money on some specialty dining.  For example, you can save money on a specialty dining option with Sesame Street characters.  You can save 10% with a Silver Pass, 15% with a Gold Pass, and 20% with a Platinum Pass.

You also get discounted stroller rentals: 10% for Silver Passholders, 15% for Gold Passholders, and 20% for Platinum Passholders.

Do SeaWorld Passholders Get Preferred Seating & Quick Queues?

I don’t think I have to tell you that it’s not really fun waiting in a long line.  Similarly, it’s not fun looking for a seat or settling for a bad seat.  So getting preferred seating at shows and parades is great.

What is also great is access to Quick Queue.  Quick Queue allows you to jump to the front of the line on rides.  This not only saves you time but makes for a more fun trip.

Now, in the case of Quick Queue, that is not included in your pass, unless you get a Platinum Pass.  Then you get one free single ride Quick Queue per day (please note this excludes the new Ice Breaker roller coaster)!

But what if you want Quick Queue Unlimited?  That means you can use Quick Queue all day, which is a great deal.  It is similar to the Universal Express Unlimited Pass at Universal Orlando (and is a much better deal than Genie Plus at Disney World).

Well, having an annual pass does give you a discount for it (provided you don’t have the Bronze Pass).  You can get 20% off Quick Queue Unlimited with a Silver Pass, 30% for a Gold Pass, and 50% for a Platinum Pass.

The Platinum Pass also gets you free Reserved Show Viewing and Up-Close Reserved Parade Viewing!  You also get one free reserved parade viewing during your year of membership with the Gold Pass.

Do You Get Free or Discounted Animal Experiences?

One special thing SeaWorld does is allow you to have more personal experiences with their amazing animals.  You can check these out here.  These are amazing, once-in-a-lifetime experiences.  They make great gifts for birthdays, Christmas, Hannukah, etc.  But these extra experiences usually cost extra.

But you can save money here with an annual pass.  If you have a Platinum Annual Pass, you get one free animal experience!  Additionally, you can save 10% on animal experiences with a Silver Pass, 15% with a Gold Pass, and 20% with a Platinum Pass.

Does a SeaWorld Annual Pass Have Blackout Dates?

The answer to this question is similar to the last one.  Because most annual pass options do not have blackout dates, making it different from if you just purchase a Fun Card.

However, the most basic Annual Pass option (the Bronze Pass) does have blackout dates.  Now, this may not matter to you; it depends on when you want to visit.  But if you don’t want to have to worry about then, then pay a little more, because there are no blockout dates for the Silver, Gold, and

Does SeaWorld Annual Pass Include Aquatica?

This is one of my favorite things about an annual pass.  I had actually never been to Aquatica before I got an annual pass.  But since my annual pass covered Aquatica, I decided to try it.

And I loved it!  It is now by far my favorite water park of all time.  You can see for yourself how great it is in our video:

So even if you usually just visit SeaWorld and have never been to Aquatica, I recommend going.  Especially if you get an annual pass since it is included!

Does SeaWorld Annual Pass Include Discovery Cove

Unfortunately, no.  You do, however, get discounts for Discovery Cove because you’re a SeaWorld passholder!

Learn more about Discovery Cove here.

Any Other Theme Parks Included in an Annual Pass?

Yes, but only with the Platinum Pass.  And this feature is one of the reasons my family wanted this annual pass.

And that is that with a Platinum Pass, you not only get admission to the Orlando theme parks.  You get admission to all SeaWorld brand theme parks across the country!

This includes:

  • SeaWorld theme park in Orlando, Florida
  • Aquatica water park in Orlando, Florida
  • Busch Gardens theme park in Tampa, Florida
  • Adventure Island water park in Tampa, Florida
  • Busch Gardens theme park in Williamsburg, Virginia
  • Water Country USA water park in Williamsburg, Virginia
  • Sesame Place theme park in Langhorne, Pennsylvania
  • SeaWorld theme park in San Antonio, Texas
  • Aquatica water park in San Antonio, Texas
  • SeaWorld theme park in San Diego, California
  • Sesame Place theme park in San Diego, California

This was great for my family because we live in North Carolina.  We love traveling to Orlando.  When we do, we use it for SeaWorld and Aquatica.  Sometimes we visit Tampa during our Florida trips and when we do, we use our pass to get into the Tampa parks.

But since we live in North Carolina, we are actually closer to Williamsburg.  So we love to use our pass to go to Busch Gardens theme park and Water Country USA water park in Williamsburg, too.  We went to San Diego in the last few years and enjoyed visiting SeaWorld there.  It is really great to be able to have one pass and use it for all of these theme parks.

This is also a great deal if you live in Florida and are close to both the Orlando and Tampa theme parks.  It saves you so much money to just have one pass.

And it can give you some flexibility when choosing a vacation spot.  You can, for example, plan trips to both Orlando and Williamsburg in the same year and have two totally different experiences.  You won’t feel tied to one place like you might with an annual pass to one park in one city.  So it really is a great deal.

Does SeaWorld Annual Pass Include Admissions To Events & Festivals

For the most part, the answer to this is yes.  A lot of the most popular festivals and events at SeaWorld are included in your annual pass.  This includes:

The one exception, though, is after-hours events.  This includes SeaWorld’s new popular Halloween event for older kids, teens, and adults, Howl-O-Scream.  This would also include after-hour events at Aquatica, including their Pride Event or their Noche de San Juan event.

However, in the case of Howl-O-Scream, if you have any annual pass tier, you can get discounted Howl-O-Scream tickets.  Click here to purchase them.

Is SkyTower Admission Included in Your Pass?

Have you ever been on the SeaWorld Orlando SkyTower?  It is a wonderful way to see the entire park from up high.

Unlike other rides at SeaWorld, this attraction costs extra.  But it is included for free with the Silver, Gold, and Platinum Passes!

Is PhotoKey Included in Your Pass?

Do you like getting photos taken of you and your family while you’re at SeaWorld?  I’m sure you take photos with your phone, but you can make sure you get great shots of your whole family with PhotoKey.  And you get one Free Digital Download (meaning one picture) with the Silver Pass, One Free Day of Photokey during your Gold Annual Pass Membership (meaning multiple pictures), and PhotoKey free for the whole year with your Platinum Membership!

Now, with this, I am referring to digital downloads.  But what about prints and frames?  Well, you can get discounts on this with your annual pass!  You can save 10% with a Bronze Pass, 20% with a Silver Pass, 30% with a Gold Pass, and 50% with a Platinum Pass.

Do You Get Free Tickets for Guests?

Here is another fun perk for being an annual pass member.  You can get free tickets for other guests!  For example, after I got an annual pass, my dad did not have one but I used a free ticket for him to get into the park (I have since gotten him an annual pass).  So it is a good option for family members who don’t always travel with you.  It is also a great thing to have if say you sometimes let your kids bring friends on trips.  Or you live nearby and sometimes bring along visiting family members to the park with you.

Once again, here is a perk that Bronze Members do not get.  Silver Members get two free guest tickets.  One you can use between January 1st and September 30th and the other you can use between October 1st and January 2nd.  Gold Members get four free guest tickets.  You can use one between January 3rd and May 15th, two between May 16th and September 30th, and one between October 1st and January 2nd.  Platinum Members get six free guest tickets: two tickets between January 3rd and May 15th, two between May 16th and September 30th, and two between October 1st and January 2nd.

One thing to remember with these guest tickets, too, is that each member gets a guest ticket, not each family.  So if you have four people in your family with an annual pass, that means four free tickets each period rather than one free ticket.

And for all members, you can also get extra guest tickets at a discount.  This is great if you live nearby and have a lot of relatives who like to visit you so they can go to all the theme parks in Orlando!

Are There Any Other Perks?

Well, as a matter of fact, there are!

As a SeaWorld annual passholder, you get access to exclusive Pin Trading Events & products.

You also get savings on SeaWorld’s youth summer camps.  You can save 10% with a silver pass, 15% with a gold pass, and 20% with a platinum pass.


As you can see, the annual pass option at SeaWorld gives you so many extra perks and ways to save money that it just makes sense to buy an annul pass.  It makes sense both from a perspective of wanting to have the best vacations and experiences possible and it makes sense from a financial point of view.  You can get started getting your annual pass by clicking here.