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Are you planning an exciting and unforgettable family trip to Disneyland this year? If that’s the case, rest assured that you and your family will have a magical time!
But long before your kids are even able to meet and greet the beloved mouse, you’ll need to decide which airport is right for you. You’re probably now wondering what the best airport for Disneyland vacations is?
Airports to Use for Disneyland Vacation
It just so happens that there are several major airports that service the Anaheim, Los Angelos, and San Diego areas, which thankfully gives your family many more options.
These include the John Wayne Airport (SNA), Los Angeles International Airport (LAX), Hollywood Burbanks Airport (BUR), Ontario International Airport (ONT), San Diego Airport (SAN), and Long Beach Airport (LGB).
Each has its own pros and cons, so it’s important to weigh your options before making a decision. I’ve taken the time to jot down what some of them are so that you aren’t left doing hours of unnecessary homework. These are the airports to consider flying into when you’re visiting Disneyland.
Map of Airports for Disneyland Vacation Arrival
Below is a map of the airports mentioned in this article. Disneyland Resort is also noted on the map.
John Wayne Airport (SNA)
18601 Airport Way, Santa Ana, California 92707
22 Minute Drive to Disneyland
Do you prefer the convenience and less driving time? John Wayne Airport is easily the closest airport to Disneyland, located just 15 miles away. Because of this, some visitors will tell you it’s the best Disneyland airport to fly into.
It’s a smaller airport with only 22 gates along with fewer passengers that travel with them daily. But this also means that there are fewer flight options to choose from and it tends to be more expensive than flying into LAX or Long Beach.
However, on the bright side, it’s usually less crowded and has shorter wait times for security and baggage claim than LAX.
It’s also extremely easy to arrange a shuttle pickup from several of the area’s hotels to pick your family up at the airport and can also take you directly to Disneyland. Meaning, that you don’t necessarily have to rent a vehicle during your visit, saving your family hundreds of dollars.
But if you’d still like to rent a vehicle, there are several car rental companies at John Wayne Airport to choose from.
If you plan on using Uber or Lyft, they’ll be able to pick you up on level 3 of each terminal.
Los Angeles International Airport (LAX)
1 World Way, Los Angeles, California 90045
Roughly 60-90 Minutes to Disneyland (33 Miles) – Traffic may increase this time even more.
LAX is considerably the biggest airport in the area, located about 30 miles from Disneyland. It has more flight options than any other airport, but some passengers complain that it can be congested and difficult to navigate at times. Security lines can also be long, so be sure to factor that into your travel plans.
As I mentioned earlier, because LAX has more flight options it also tends to cost passengers less by flying with them so that gives you something to look forward to.
The Los Angeles International Airport also provides shuttle services that will take you to several car rental agencies that are located just outside the airport on Bellanca Way.
And should you want to take an Uber or ride along with Lyft from the airport, you’ll need to first head over to the LAX-it lot that’s next to terminal 1 and then let them know you’re ready to be picked up.
The distance, and added steps to get to ride-shares, shuttles and rental vehicles should be factored in when deciding if this is the airport for you. Oftentimes, you may also find that the cost of transportation to Anaheim from LAX more than makes up for any savings on flights.
Hollywood Burbanks Airport
2627 N. Hollywood Way, Burbank, California 91505
45 to 60 Minute Drive (40 Miles from Disneyland)
Are you hoping to visit Disneyland while sticking to a tighter budget? No problem! The Hollywood Burbanks Airport is located in the San Fernando Valley and is about a 45-minute drive to Disneyland.
This airport is a great option if you’re looking for low-cost flight options. It’s smaller than LAX but has more gates than John Wayne Airport, which means that there are plenty of domestic and international flights to choose from.
You can also take advantage of their convenient shuttle service that will take you from the airport to your hotel and then to Disneyland. You’re also able to be picked up from the airport while using Uber or Lyft by heading over to the ground transportation island that is just across from terminal B.
Long Beach Airport (LGB)
4100 Donald Douglas Drive, Long Beach, California 90808
25 Minute Drive to Disneyland (23 miles)
The Long Beach Airport is located only about 23 miles from Disneyland and is a great option for families. It’s a smaller airport than LAX, so it’s usually less crowded.
This is by far the smallest airport on our list, with only 11 gates. This airport also offers lots of indoor and outdoor space, including seating in the sand! Yes, that is right, you have your own little tiny sandy beach area inside the secured area.
This airport only services a few airlines, but most are major players like Delta and Southwest.
This airport is currently undergoing an improvement project, but don’t let that deter you from flying here. The benefits of this small airport outweigh any inconvenience the construction brings. (Honestly, this is my main airport I use, and the construction has not even been a bother.)
It also has the benefit of being right next to the Long Beach Convention Center and Aquarium of the Pacific, making it a convenient location for travelers who want to explore more than just Disneyland.
Long Beach Airport provides both shuttle and car rental services within its facilities, steps away from baggage claim. Curbside pickup is available at the Long Beach Airport while using companies like Uber and Lyft.
Ontario International Airport (ONT)
Ontario, California 91761
Roughly a 50 to 70 Minute Drive to Disneyland (32 Miles)
The Ontario International Airport is located in the Inland Empire and is about a 35-minute drive to Disneyland. It’s another great option for families because it offers low-cost flight options and is usually less crowded than LAX.
The airport provides a wide range of rental companies and vehicles to choose from.
One last thing to keep in mind is that there are no direct shuttles to Disneyland from the Ontario International Airport but they do provide shuttles to several of the area’s nearest hotels.
From your hotel, you can catch a shuttle that will take you to and from Disneyland. Lastly, Lyft and Uber pickups are not allowed at the Ontario International Airport so don’t make that mistake.
San Diego International Airport
3225 N Harbor Dr, San Diego, CA 92101
Roughly a 1 1/2 – 2 hour drive (95 Miles)
For those of you that are planning a trip to San Diego but would also like to visit Disneyland at some point during your stay, the San Diego International Airport is your best bet. It’s about a 1 1/2 hour drive from Disneyland, or more depending on traffic. This means that you can easily still make a day trip out of it. Just be sure to factor in traffic when planning your travel times and don’t make the mistake of sleeping in!
The airport is considered to be one of the busiest airports in California, so you’ll want to check-in at least 2 hours before your scheduled flight.
The airport provides rental car companies as well as shuttle services that will take you to your hotel where you can then catch a shuttle to Disneyland.
There are also two designated Uber and Lyft pick-up areas that are located on the ground level just across from both terminals.
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So, what airport to fly to for Disneyland are you strongly considering? As you’ve probably discovered, it really depends on your individual needs and preferences. If you want the most flight options, go with LAX. If you’re looking for a more relaxed travel experience, John Wayne Airport, Hollywood Burbanks Airport or Long Beach Airport may be better choices. Whichever airport you choose, you’re sure to have a magical trip!