Planning your next family vacation? Thinking thrills, scares, and unique attractions? Theme parks are ideal for families looking for a different experience from their usual family vacations. From day trips to week-long stays, theme parks cater to every family member.
This report reveals the cheapest and most expensive theme parks worldwide so that you can fit any budget around your next family trip to some of the world’s greatest attractions.
- The World’s Best Value Theme Parks (Lowest Cost per Ride)
- The World’s Worst Value Theme Parks (Highest Cost per Ride)
- 2022’s Cheapest Theme Parks
- 2022’s Most Expensive Theme Parks
- Which Theme Parks Have Become More Expensive Over the Last 5 Years?
- Which Theme Parks Have Become Less Expensive Over the Last 5 Years?
The World’s Best Value Theme Parks (Lowest Cost per Ride)
The average cost per ride has been revealed by dividing the ticket cost by the number of rides available at each theme park. These theme parks offer the best bang for your buck or the most rides for your ticket price.
Cedar Point, Sandusky
Cost Per Ride: $0.44
With a ticket price of $82.16 and 89 total rides to choose from, Cedar Point, Sandusky, offers the cheapest cost-per-ride on this list at $0.44 per ride. In addition to its vast array of rides, Cedar Point also boasts the fourth-highest number of roller coasters globally at 16.
Cost Per Ride: $0.49
Located in Germany, Europa Park offers the second-lowest cost-per-ride at $0.49 per ride. The ticket price is $58.79, and Europa Park offers a total of 81 rides. The largest theme park in Germany, Europa-Park, is the second most popular theme park in all of Europe.
Cost Per Ride: $0.61
Kings Island offers visitors an average cost-per-ride of $0.61. A ticket price of $82.54 provides access to a total of 65 rides.
The World’s Worst Value Theme Parks (Highest Cost per Ride)
Busch Gardens Tampa Bay
Cost Per Ride: $2.62
The theme park with the most expensive cost per ride is Busch Gardens Tampa Bay, located in the USA. Busch Gardens Tampa Bay has just 15 rides to choose from, each with an average cost per ride of $2.62
IMG Worlds of Adventure
Country: United Arab Emirates
Cost Per Ride: $2.46
In joint second place for the most expensive theme park is the IMG Worlds of Adventure, United Arab Emirates, and Seaworld San Diego, USA. Both theme parks have a cost per ride of $2.46.
Seaworld San Diego
Cost Per Ride: $2.46
The second American theme park in the top three for most expensive cost per ride is Seaworld San Diego, which comes in joint second alongside IMG Worlds of Adventure. Seaworld San Diego offers 16 rides to choose from alongside an outside aquarium.
2022’s Cheapest Theme Parks
Out of 36 of the biggest theme parks worldwide, these are the parks which offer the lowest ticket price as of 2022.
Gold Reef City
Country: South Africa
2022 Ticket Price: $15.99
Gold Reef City, located in Johannesburg, South Africa, is currently the cheapest theme park right now, with ticket prices standing at a low $15.99. This theme park is also home to the famous Gold Reef City Casino and the site of the Apartheid Museum.
Six Flags México
2022 Ticket Price: $22.97
The second cheapest theme park on this list is Six Flags México, with a ticket price of $22.97. This theme park is the most visited in Latin America, owing this title to its 2.8 million annual visitors.
Tivoli Gardens, Denmark
2022 Ticket Price: $35.10
Tivoli Gardens theme park in Denmark rounds off our top three cheapest theme parks with a 2022 ticket price of $35.10. Tivoli Gardens is not only the third-cheapest but the third-oldest operating amusement park in the world, opening its gates way back in 1843.
2022’s Most Expensive Theme Parks
Out of 36 of the biggest theme parks worldwide, these are the parks which offer the highest ticket price as of 2022.
Busch Gardens Tampa Bay
2022 Ticket Price: $117.94
The most expensive theme park on this list is Busch Gardens Tampa Bay in the US, with a staggering ticket price of $117.94. This is an African-themed theme park, so expect sightings of more than 200 species, including lions, giraffes, and penguins.
Walt Disney Magic Kingdom, Florida
Country: United States
2022 Ticket Price: $109.00
Walt Disney Magic Kingdom, Florida, charges $109 per ticket and is the second most expensive theme park on this list. With six themed lands, Magic Kingdom offers everything from Cinderella’s Castle, to Space Mountain, to 7 Dwarfs Mine Train, and lots more.
Universal Islands of Adventure
2022 Ticket Price: $105.37
The third most expensive theme park on this list is Universal Islands of Adventure. True to its name, this theme park offers eight uniquely themed islands taking inspiration from popular media franchises including Jurassic Park, Harry Potter, and King Kong.
Which Theme Parks Have Become More Expensive Over the Last 5 Years?
By comparing 2022’s prices with the recorded prices from 2017, these are the theme parks which have seen their ticket prices increase the most.
Hersheypark has seen massive inflation in ticket prices, seeing prices rise from $33.80 in 2017 to $74.44 today, a whopping 120.2% increase. Founded as a leisure park for Hershey employees, Hersheypark now covers over 110 acres, with 76 rides as well as its own zoo.
Silverwood Theme Park
Over the last five years, Silverwood Theme Park has seen ticket prices rise 92.1% going from $36.92 to $70.93. Silverwood offers over 70 rides, slides, shows and attractions as well as its famous Scarywood, a seasonal attraction during the month of October.
Paultons Park, England, has seen prices rise over 50% in the last five years. Many of the rides here are designed for children and families, and so Paultons Park is very much considered a family theme park. Themes here include Peppa Pig World and The Lost Kingdom.
Which Theme Parks Have Become Less Expensive Over the Last 5 Years?
Drayton Manor Theme Park
Drayton Manor Theme Park in the United Kingdom has seen the cost of its entry tickets drop a substantial 23.08% over the last five years from 2017. Drayton Manor Theme Park is located on the grounds of the former Drayton Manor and is the fourth-largest amusement park in the UK.
Six Flags México
The most visited theme park in Latin America, Mexico City’s Six Flags México theme park has seen the second-largest decrease in entry tickets, falling from $29.43 in 2017 to $22.98 in 2022, a 21.91% decrease. Six Flags is also the second cheapest theme park on our list and is located in the Tlalpan forest and borough.
Everland Resort, South Korea, saw a small decrease in entry-level prices over the last five years, dropping by $1.56. This represents a decrease in prices of just 3.82%, which still sees Everland Resort in the top three theme parks that have decreased in price. All other theme parks have increased in price with the exception of PortAventura Park, Spain, which has stayed the same.
All data for ticket prices and the number of rides were taken from each theme park’s website and Wikipedia. All currency conversions were taken on or before 20th May 2022. When booking from outside of the US, you may have to buy passes that entitle you to enter the parks for up to 14 days, but one-day tickets may be available to buy at the gate.