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Parents With Young Children Are Taking on 'Disney-Related' Debt for Trips to Theme Parks, According to a New Report Despite the debt, 59% of parents surveyed said they have no regrets.

By Emily Rella Edited by Melissa Malamut

Key Takeaways

  • A new study by LendingTree examined the potential costs associated with visiting the Happiest Place on Earth.
  • Parents of young children reported an average of $1,983 in Disney-related debt.
  • 90% of the parents surveyed said the trip was a treat.
Gary Hershorn/Getty Images

The Happiest Place on Earth is far from the cheapest when looking for a family vacation, but a new report from LendingTree found that families are going anyway — and breaking their budgets.

The report surveyed over 2,000 Disney parkgoers, and 24% cited they had gone into some debt paying for the trip. That number jumps to 45% for parents who have children under the age of 18.

LendingTree noted that the average amount of debt parents with young children have taken on is $1,983 per family with concessions being the main source of overspending — 65% of respondents said that food and beverages inside the parks cost significantly more than planned.

Related: A Fifth Walt Disney World Theme Park Could Be Coming Soon — Here's What We Know

"Looking more broadly at the 75% of theme park-going Americans who've been to Disney, 24% have gone into debt for at least one trip," LendingTree wrote in the report. "That's up 33% from 18% in our 2022 survey. Of this 24%, 74% took on their debt in the past five years, with 29% doing so in the past year."

According to Walt Disney World's official website, a standard one-day ticket to the park for those aged 10 and up is currently $109.

The new report coincides with data released last week by FinanceBuzz, which found that concession prices at Disney World have increased nearly 60% in 10 years, including the fan-favorite Dole Whip dessert which has gone up 58% in the last decade.

The Walt Disney Co. was up over 13% year over year as of Friday afternoon.

Related: Disney World Concession Prices Have Gone Up 60% Over the Past Decade — Including Two Fan Favorite Sweet Treats That Have Skyrocketed in Price

Emily Rella

Entrepreneur Staff

Senior News Writer

Emily Rella is a Senior News Writer at Entrepreneur.com. Previously, she was an editor at Verizon Media. Her coverage spans features, business, lifestyle, tech, entertainment, and lifestyle. She is a 2015 graduate of Boston College and a Ridgefield, CT native. Find her on Twitter at @EmilyKRella.

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