Parks, Pigskins & Priorities


MK Cinderella Castle  Dallas Cowboys Stadium

We all have different priorities in our lives, the things that mean the most to us.  They say that if you want to know where someone’s priorities lie, look at their bank account.  How true is that?  We’re all different.  And our priorities are as diverse as our bank accounts.  My mom always used to say “it takes all kinds to make up the world!”  It took me a long time to admit it (because I was certain that anyone who didn’t have the same priorities as me must just be weird!) but guess what?  Mom was right (she was right about a couple of other things too … maybe).

So, if you were to take a sneak peek into our bank account, you would see all of the normal things … bills being paid, donations being made, Starbucks being purchased, and maybe a couple of Target sprees (shhh…don’t tell my husband).  But you would also see, what I like to refer to as, “family bonding expenditures”.  Read:  vacations.  We REALLY like vacations.  But not just ANY vacations … we like Disney vacations!  Parks, cruises, you name it. If it’s a Disney destination we are going to love it!  “But wait!”  You might say.  “Aren’t Disney vacations incredibly, ridiculously expensive and over-priced?”  The short answer is, no.  No they are not.  If you would, allow me to make some comparisons (or stop reading if you don’t want to hear them).

My niece was engaged to a man who really, I mean REALLY loved NFL football, specifically The Boys.  Now we won’t fault him for that …. He had a lot of faults much worse than THAT one!  Especially giving me grief for “wasting money on a stupid mouse”.  Ummm.  Blasphemy!  So, Gary, this post is for YOU (and by the way, good riddance!)

DisneyParkHopperImage  magic bands dallas-cowboys-tickets-6


Let’s compare an 11 hour action-packed day at a Disney World park to three hours watching sweaty men toss the pigskin.  (And before you come after me with pitchforks, my family has spent many hours watching sweaty men toss the pigskin, we just prefer to do it at home on our television!)  But before I share the numbers (and numbers don’t lie, now do they?), let me point out a few things:

  1. You can bring your own food and drinks into Disney Parks.  (I’m not talking about THOSE kinds of drinks.  Leave your flask at home.)
  2. Bring your own water bottle and Disney cast members will kindly refill it for you all day long.
  3. Mickey Mouse will happily give you his autograph. He’ll even pose for some pictures with you.  So will all his friends.  You don’t have to have VIP tickets, or own a suite for this.  (Hey Gary – next time you’re at a game, why don’t you head on down to the field and ask your buddy Tony for his autograph and a selfie.  Don’t call us for bail money though – we’re saving for our next Disney vacation.)
  4. At Disney Parks you’re active.  People have been known to walk 11 miles or more in a day.  At an NFL game you are sedentary.  So who is likely to live longer?  (SEE, there are even health benefits to Disney!)
  5. If you require a seat at an NFL game (and I’m assuming you WOULD), you will pay the same price for it no matter what age you are. At Disney, you don’t start to pay more until the day you turn 10.

Those are just a few things to consider before you jump on the judgment train.

Ok, so the numbers.  Are you ready for this?!  (Sorry, couldn’t help myself.)

Disney Parks are open 365 days a year.  So if you are an annual pass holder and you choose to drop by one of the parks every day for a bit, you could spend upwards of 720 hours.  If you are an annual pass holder for the Cowboys and went to every single home game, you would spend around 30 hours (including preseason games).  I’ll even assume you tailgate, and double it, so 60 hours.

An average annual pass for the four Walt Disney World parks is $600.  An average season pass to watch The Boys is $1782.  That’s $1.20/hour and $29.70/hour, respectively.

But what if you can’t afford to shell out for a season pass, you ask?  Never fear, I’ve got those numbers for you too.  But first, I’m going to make some assumptions:

  1. You are a family of four, two adults and two kiddos (under 10)
  2. You are smart enough to know that it takes more than a day to take in all the Disney World parks have to offer, so you’ve decided to go for 10 consecutive days.
  3. You all like to eat.
  4. Your kids are going to whine until you finally give in and buy them a souvenir.
  5. Your limousine got a flat tire, so you’re going to drive yourself.

With those assumptions out of the way, here you go!


Dallas Cowboys Game Pricing

Dallas Cowboys non-premium average Ticket Price: 110.20 pp, or

$440.80 for family of 4 per day *

Hot dog Plain without side $5.50

Soft Drink $5.00

Bottle Water $5.00

Parking $75.00

Program $10

Cap $20

Draft Beer: $8.50


Total Family cost per game: $634.80 *, ****

Total Family cost per hour:  $211.60





Disney Theme Park Pricing****

Admission: Adults (ages 10+): $40/day ($400 for 10 day pass, pp), Kids (ages 3-9): $38/day ($380 for 10 day pass, pp)

Hot Dog with baked beans, bacon, fried onions, and grapes or french fries: $9.99**

Large Soft Drink $3.29**

Bottled Water $2.75**

Draft Beer: $6.75(average cost)**

Parking: $20 per day, if staying off site***

Park Map/Times guide: Free

Plain Mickey ears: $14.99***


Total Family cost per day: $312.57 ***

Total Family cost per hour: $28.41


So there you have it, Gary, in black and white.  Not bad for a stupid Mouse, now is it?


Have a Magical Day!

Angela Wimbish & Brett Strickler



The Fine Print:

*Football games have no kid’s price tickets, all tickets are the same price, Prices based on 2015 fan cost index found here:

**Food prices based on Liberty Inn at Epcot pricing found here:

***Prices for Disney Parks reflect current pricing as of 4/10/16, Prices subject to change without notice, Prices are Per Person based on purchase of a 10 day, one park per day base ticket for each person in the group. Pricing does not include taxes, which may be extra. Actual pricing will vary based on length of stay and ticket level purchased. Price reflects one beer per adult, one hotdog per person, one bottle of water per person, one soda per person.

****His name isn’t really Gary.

Don Korta
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