Choosing the best airport for your Disneyland vacation is almost as important as choosing where you’re going to stay. So many factors go in to choosing an airport, including flight times, prices, proximity to the parks, and transportation options to and from Disneyland.
There are six airports in the southern California area, all of which service Disneyland. And while all of them have pros and cons, there are two that we highly suggest looking into for all of the factors mentioned above: Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) and John Wayne Airport (SNA).
Best Airport for Disneyland: Los Angeles International Airport
Los Angeles International Airport is the best option for families who might be traveling from a city with a smaller airport, as there are more flight time options for direct and non-direct flights going into and out of LAX. Since LAX is an international airport, the prices can vary. But we’ve found that if you’re willing to be flexible with your flight times and travel dates, you can find some good deals by using LAX. Disneyland is located about 40 miles from Los Angeles International Airport, so it’ll take a while to get to Anaheim after you collect your baggage.
There are a few ways to get to and from LAX to Disneyland. You can rent a car, use a ride share, take a combination of metro and bus, or take a shuttle. We suggest taking the shuttle for the easiest way to get to Disneyland. Typically shuttles cost about $40 to $75 for a family of three to four. Shuttles are usually shared rides so you will be with other families making multiple stops along the way, but there are usually no more than four stops. Depending on your flight time, it can take anywhere from 45 minutes to over two hours to get to Disneyland from LAX.
Best Airport for Disneyland: John Wayne Airport
If time is of the essence, you’re going to want to fly into John Wayne Airport. This airport is about 15 miles from Disneyland, and offers the same modes of transportation as LAX. Since SNA is a smaller airport, there aren’t as many inbound and outbound flights during the day. This does limit the amount of options you might have, and your local airport might not even be serviced by SNA with direct flights or your preferred airline. But if you can find a flight into SNA, it’s worth the little bit of extra money for the plane ticket since you can spend more time at Disneyland, not just getting to Disneyland.
Because of how close SNA is to Disneyland, you’ll be able to get to your hotel and the parks even faster, and spend more time in the parks on your departing day (if you wish)! The ride from SNA to Disneyland via shuttle is only about 20 minutes, and a shuttle will cost anywhere from $50 to $75 for a family of three or four.
Los Angeles International Airport vs. John Wayne Airport
Choosing the right airport really depends on your family’s needs when it comes to getting to and from the Disneyland Resort. If you need more options for flights, airlines, and shuttle services, go with LAX. If your family is more flexible with flight times, airlines, shuttle services, and wants to maximize your time at Disneyland, John Wayne Airport is the one for you.
Best Airfare for Disneyland
Want to find the best airfare for Disneyland? Sign up for airfare alerts! Airfarewatchdog.com (one of our sister sites) is a great resource for this. You can easily search the best deals from your preferred airport to LAX or SNA, and/or sign up to be alerted to the best airfares as they become available. Airfarewatchdog provides airfare alerts for all airlines in the U.S. and Canada.
Megan duBois is a theme park expert and frequent traveler to magical places. She covers all things Disney and Universal and runs marathons for fun. She thinks you can tell a lot about someone by the name of their signature lipstick, and hers is NARS Dragon Girl. You can follow her adventures on Instagram and Twitter.