Parking is where the whole Disney experience starts, so we have all the information you need to know to make the parking situation a little less stressful!
Parking for a standard-size car/motorcycle is $20 and can be purchased upon entering the parking structure or on the Disneyland website before your visit! Keep in mind, you still have to wait in the line to get into any of the parking lots even if you purchase parking online. Parking for an oversized vehicle or motorhome is $25. Preferred Parking is $35 and allows guests a parking spot closest to the escalator and elevator. FYI – You CAN use Disney Gift Cards to pay for parking.
The Mickey and Friends parking structure opens 60 minutes prior to scheduled park opening time on Sunday, Monday, Wednesday, and Friday and 90 minutes prior to park opening time on Magic Morning/Extra Magic Hour days which are Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday.
We always park in Mickey & Friends & walk through Downtown Disney to the park entrance or take the tram (depending on lines). Another fun way to get to the park is by the monorail from Downtown Disney (strollers must be folded)! We love the restrooms located at the base of the parking structure! Strollers can be folded OR you can keep them open (take your little one out) & enter at the very front or very back of the tram where they allow unfolded strollers. We love the Pinocchio lot (uncovered, ground level lot, attached to Mickey & Friends), but we usually only get to park there when we arrive early; it’s nice to not have to deal with the elevator or escalator!
Electric Vehicle Parking
ChargePoint charging stations can be found in the Mickey & Friends Parking Structure on the Chip ‘n Dale level (ground level). To use a charging station, you’ll need to scan a ChargePoint card. If you don’t have a ChargePoint card, you can set one up here.
What to do if the Mickey & Friends Structure is closed in the morning
We get a lot of questions about the rhyme or reason to the Mickey & Friends structure closing an hour or so after the park opens, & re-opening later. Often times, the lot will close so that traffic doesn’t back up onto Ball Rd. Once this is under control, Mickey & Friends will re-open. When the structure closes & guests are being re-routed to overflow lots, you can use the “fly-over” trick (if it’s open)! If you’re taking the 5 south, exit Manchester/Disneyland Drive, before Ball Rd which will take you OVER Ball Rd & straight into the parking structure. If you’re heading north on the 5, exit Manchester, turn right onto Harbor Blvd, left onto Ball Rd, then turn right onto Disneyland Drive. At the soonest opportunity, make a U-turn on Disneyland Drive to head back toward the structure and get onto the bridge that goes OVER Ball Rd.
More parking options
If you can catch the Pumbaa Lot when it’s open, it’s just a short walk across Harbor Blvd to the east side of the main entrance, or take the shuttle bus. We have noticed IF it’s open (not super common), it’s not until mid-morning/day.
The Toy Story Lot on Harbor Blvd is another good option, but the walk is the furthest. You can walk to the entrance or take an air conditioned bus (strollers must be folded to ride).
The Simba Lot by the Paradise Pier Hotel is one of our favorites, but typically used as overflow, so it’s not open very often.
Parking at Downtown Disney is not recommended for guests heading into the parks. If you’re planning to spend time in Downtown Disney, feel free to park in the lot, but keep in mind the first 2 hours are free, then it’s $12 every hour after that with a max of $36/day. After the first 2 hours of parking have expired, two additional hours will be validated at any table service restaurant or the movie theater.
New security checkpoints were put into place at the end of 2016 to secure the entire Disneyland Resort, including Downtown Disney and the Disney Hotels. All checkpoints are designed so guests only have to go through security ONE time. Guests exiting the Mickey & Friends structure can either go through the security checkpoints at the base of the structure, then take the tram in or walk to Downtown Disney to go through the security check located between Rainforest Cafe and ESPN Zone. You can bypass the Mickey & Friends security & go straight to Downtown Disney security to avoid going through TWO checkpoints. Walking to the Downtown Disney checkpoint has been faster mid-morning when majority of guests arrive (for those who don’t mind walking in instead of taking the tram).
Guests coming from the Disneyland Hotel and Paradise Pier Hotel can use the security check located between Earl of Sandwich and ESPN Zone. There is still a security check from the Grand Californian to the west side of California Adventure, by Grizzly River Run. Guests exiting the Grand Californian into Downtown Disney will go through the security checkpoint between Sephora and Elsa & Anna’s Boutique.
The security checkpoint on the east side of the Disneyland Main Entrance (along Harbor Blvd) remains in the same place!