Flying to Disneyland Resort? This guide will help you prep whether you’re headed to Disneyland Resort, San Diego or the Los Angeles area.
I love flying, especially when I can snag cheap flights on my favorite airlines. I often play around with pricing out various Disneyland airports. Let’s dive into those options below.
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Which Disneyland Airport is Best
Choosing an airport is likely your first step when booking a Disneyland flight. For those new to Southern California, options can quickly become overwhelming. For a quick answer, I’d have to say I prefer either Long Beach or Orange County. But what’s best for you might not be best for someone else—and truly, there isn’t a bad choice.
So when someone tells you to avoid LAX at all costs, understand that just a general rule of thumb. For example, if you’re coming from Australia to Disneyland then LAX is likely your best choice.
Here’s a snapshot of the six major airports near The Disneyland Resort to help you decide. If there isn’t a clear winner just from the descriptions, often airline prices and routes will further dictate which airport you end up using.
Los Angeles International Airport (LAX). The most well-known airport in the region and serviced by most major and low-cost carriers.
LAX is about a 40-60 minute drive to Disneyland Resort. However, traffic can make a short drive distance-wise into a long, delayed arrival.
On typical days and times, you won’t run over 90 minutes from the time you hit the road to pulling up to Disneyland or your area hotel.
Car rental facilities are off-site and provide free curbside shuttles in between their facilities and LAX. From this starting point you are in close proximity to every major tourist attraction in Southern California (including one of my favorites, Hermosa Beach).
I often book in/out of LAX because of the huge amount of inventory. I can always get a non-stop flight here and the schedules are often catered to commuters with flights arriving early in the morning and departing late and night.
Hollywood Burbank Airport (BUR). Located in Los Angeles County and simply known as the Burbank Airport.
You will find this small airport close to Walt Disney Studios, Universal Studios Hollywood, the Hollywood sign, walk of fame and many more tourist attractions.
At about 90 minutes away from Disneyland Resort, it is farther but serviced by low-cost carrier Southwest Airlines and many major carriers like Delta Airlines. Avoid traveling between Burbank and Disneyland Resort during rush hour or any home Dodger games for the least amount of traffic.
Burbank gets my business a lot because it’s a breeze to navigate and it’s closer to home for me. My family lives nearby, so I usually end up using Burbank often when scheduling is in my favor.
Long Beach Airport (LGB). Long Beach is a small airport in Los Angeles County about 20-30 minutes from Disneyland. Long Beach is serviced by select US carriers; if you can find a direct flight there you’re golden.
If you can find an affordable, non-stop flight to Long Beach Airport, this is my number one choice.
Orange County / John Wayne / Santa Ana Airport (SNA). Located in Orange County and conveniently only about twenty minutes from The Disneyland Resort.
It is serviced by a variety of well-known airlines. John Wayne Airport is one of those airports with many names so be certain to use the airport code SNA when booking flights.
SNA recently opened up to me with new non-stop options. Now it’s one of my go-to’s. My friends sing its praises too, like in this episode of the Disneyland with Kids podcast I co-host where we cover flying to Disneyland in depth.
Ontario California International Airport (ONT). Ontario is a small airport located in San Bernardino County and about an hour from Disneyland.
This small airport has never been an option for me, but if you see a good price here, there’s no reason not to snag it.
San Diego International Airport (SAN). The farthest airport from The Disneyland Resort is San Diego at about a two-hour drive.
San Diego serves as a gateway to world-class beaches, the famous San Diego Zoo and Wild Animal Park, as well as SeaWorld and LEGOLAND.
SAN could be a good starting or ending point for your trip if you book one way tickets and are including San Diego in your Disneyland itinerary.
My top choices for flying to The Disneyland Resort are BUR and LGB. Both rank high for convenience, airline ticket prices, rental car availability and prices, along with proximity to the resort.
Plus, my family is super close to Burbank airport so I choose that one any time I can sneak in some family time with cousins, siblings, parents—you name it, they’re nearby.
Book Your Disneyland Flight
Find affordable Disneyland airfare with the strategies I use about 12 times per year. Most years I’ve travel out of state at least once a month for work and fun.
- Use Google flight search to show all possible flights available, except a few low cost carriers. Begin your search by typing in “Disneyland” as your destination, then click on “nearby airports” (bottom right) to include the airports discussed above. You can refine your search by selecting options like nonstop only. Bonus tip: look for the toggle alert that says “track prices” and google with email you as prices change.
2. In a new tab, shop low-cost carriers like Southwest and new to many, Breeze Airways on their official websites. I personally love flying Southwest Airlines because of their many perks:
- free checked bags
- free cancelation up to 10 minutes before your flight (the amount paid will be saved as future travel credit)
- rate adjustments online or over the phone if prices drop
I’ve recently become a fan of Breeze as well and if they fly from an airport near you, it’s definitely worth looking into.
3. When you’re ready, book directly through your airline. NEVER book via third parties like Priceline. If you need someone to walk you through booking your trip, we can set up a phone call to get things moving.
With just a few minutes of searching using the right tools, you can save a lot for your family flying to Disneyland.
Before you travel, be sure to check into your flight 24 hours in advance.
Print your boarding passes if possible. Of course you can always have the boarding passes on your phone.
I prefer to have the printed version so I’m not touching my phone as much or using my phone to scan at the same spots everyone else’s phone is touching.
As I leave for the airport I always double check I have things I cannot easily replace:
- TSA approved identification for everyone 18 or older
- Birth certificate for children under 2 traveling as a lap child
- Cell phone
- Face covering (this might become my personal norm as I tend to get sore throats after flying)
TSA and Security
What can I bring through security? If you haven’t flown in a while, check out TSA’s guide to what’s allowed and what’s not. You can even type in items in the search bar and get instant answers. And yes, you can bring home that light saber you built in Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge.
There is currently an exception to the size of sanitizer you can bring. I recommend you bring your own sanitizer and antibacterial wipes to give your seat a throughout wipe down once you board.
Bonus TSA tip: take your sanitizer out of your bag and place it in its own bin. This way they can test the sanitizer alone instead of your entire bag. The same goes for fruit if you’re bringing those as a snack.
Once you land at your airport of choice, there’s more choice to make. Ideally, you’ll have those covered before you arrive.
Getting to and from Disneyland is the major player here.
Driving a rental, taking a shuttle or using a taxi-like service all have their pros and cons. I recommend listening to this episode of the Disneyland with Kids podcast where we cover flying to Disneyland and ground transportation.
I also have directions, along with details on the following airports specifically here:
If you’re still confused because regulations regarding Ubers change constantly and you’re not sure which shuttle companies are still in operation, visit the Disneyland with kids Facebook group where you can get almost instant feedback to these questions and more.
If you’re flying to Disneyland soon, chime in with your questions or comments below.