Various ways to buy discounted SeaWorld San Diego tickets legitimately exist through authorized ticket sellers. You don’t have to pay the full price! This is good news for the many families we work with who plan San Diego vacations around visiting SeaWorld San Diego. It’s the theme park I’m asked about the most because it’s one of the activities in San Diego for kids that appeals to toddlers, teens, and ages in between.

How you save money depends on how long you spend in the park, your plans once inside, and the other San Diego attractions on your to-do list. With the information I’ll provide below, you can easily choose the right SeaWorld ticket and skip trying invalid coupons, discount codes, and deal links. Sometimes, special groups have their own discounts, but most of the offers listed are available to the general public.

Key Takeaways

  • We have an EXCLUSIVE deal that saves $30 and gives you a free meal and drink.
  • SeaWorld San Diego constantly changes online promotions and pricing, so check often.
  • Residents should buy Fun Cards or Annual Passes.
  • Kids Free San Diego tickets typically go on sale in September.

We can help you save on tickets, tours, and hotels. If you purchase through some of the links below, we may be compensated. Thank you for supporting our small business! Our editorial guidelines.


Before You Go: SeaWorld San Diego Gate Prices, Parking & Upgrades

Know all of this already? Jump to: SeaWorld San Diego Tickets

You will save money by purchasing tickets and experiences online in advance. There’s no need to pay gate prices — I don’t know anyone who does. Just understand all terms and conditions before purchasing your SeaWorld tickets.

Prices for SeaWorld San Diego tickets fluctuate throughout the year more than at other local theme parks. Generally, for ages 3+, gate prices are:

  • 1-Day Ticket: $114.99
  • 1-Day Ticket + All-Day Dining: $164.98
  • SeaWorld and Sesame Place San Diego 2 Park Ticket: $204.98
  • SeaWorld San Diego 2-Day Ticket: $219.98
  • Kids ages 2 and under are always free.

The general parking fee at SeaWorld San Diego is currently $32, but you can upgrade to up-close and VIP parking by purchasing parking in advance. Parking isn’t discounted unless you have an annual pass.

Tip: Skip the Lines

SeaWorld San Diego has a variety of Quick Queue passes that provide guests with express entry to the best SeaWorld San Diego rides (like Manta roller coaster and Electric Eel) and priority seating at shows. I recommend this for older kids who will primarily be interested in the thrill rides which tend to have long lines.


1. SeaWorld San Diego Direct Online Promotions

SeaWorld San Diego offers numerous admission ticket options via its website that are almost always lower than gate prices. Remember that they charge a $9.99 service fee for online orders, which may make #2 below a better option for some purchases. Their pricing changes frequently based on various promotions, so what we have here is accurate as of this post date.

Again, do not buy at a park ticket booth. If you find yourself at the park without a ticket, I recommend buying one on your mobile phone instead of going to a booth. It will be cheaper, I promise.

  • Single Day: These tickets are good for one-day park admission on any regular operating day.
  • Ticket + All-Day Dining: This ticket option includes one-day admission and free all-day dining at participating restaurants in the park. All-Day Dining Bundle includes one-day admission and (1) entrée, (1) side OR dessert, plus a fountain drink every 60 minutes. This ticket is good for select dates when you purchase your ticket.
  • Ultimate Bundle: Add All-Day Dining to eat all day and a Quick Queue Unlimited to skip the lines during your visit.
Single Day Tickets
(Date Specific)
Two Day TicketsAny Day Tickets
Ticket OnlyFrom $60$114.99$99.99
Ticket + All Day Dining BundleFrom $100$179.99$149.99
Ticket + Ultimate BundleFrom $142
BUY NOWBUY NOWBUY NOW

Upgrade to Enjoy Special Experiences and Rentals

Through SeaWorld San Diego, you can upgrade your day to include the Quick Queue pass and a variety of animal experiences, from up-close encounters with penguins to behind-the-scenes visits with otters. You can also still rent strollers and similar items if you need them.

Upgrade Your Day >

Guests come face-to-face with a dolphin at SeaWorld San Diego

2. Discounted 1-Day and 2-Day SeaWorld Tickets — Exclusive Free Meal Deal!

I offer discount SeaWorld tickets, powered by aRes Travel, a San Diego-based, authorized ticket seller to major California attractions. 

These SeaWorld tickets can be printed at home or pulled up for scanning on a mobile phone, so you can head straight to the gate without the need to redeem a ticket voucher. There is a $2 convenience fee per ticket, but you will likely come out ahead.

People ride the Electric Eel rollercoaster on a sunny day at SeaWorld.
The Electric Eel roller coaster is popular with teens.

3. Combo Tickets with Other Theme Parks

One particularly good deal is the 2-Park ticket with sister SeaWorld Park, Sesame Place San Diego in Chula Vista. But you can also bundle other parks together for extra savings. You can also do this with sightseeing passes, and I’ll talk about a couple of these below.

Seaworld San Diego & San Diego Zoo Combo

Save $25

This combo deal includes one day at each park.

Discounted Price:

$149.99/ages 10+
$139.99/ages 3-9

San Diego Zoo, San Diego Zoo Safari Park & SeaWorld Combo

Save $30

This combo deal includes one day at each park.

Discounted Price:
$216.99/ages 10+
$196.99/ages 3-9

SAVE NOW

Disneyland & SeaWorld Combo

Save $54

Get a 3-Day Disneyland Park Hopper ticket and 1 Day at SeaWorld.

Discounted Price:
$520.99/ages 10+
$469.99/ages 3-9

SeaWorld San Diego Manta roller coaster
My daughter in front of the Manta roller coaster.

Visiting for more than one day?

Consider a Fun Card, Annual Pass, or Two-Day tickets. We have a Silver annual pass that pays for itself in two visits.


4. SeaWorld San Diego Fun Card

FLASH SALE! Fun Card holders receive unlimited visits to SeaWorld San Diego through December 31, 2024. This pass does have some limited blockout dates, but it’s popular with residents and people who may visit more than once in a year and don’t plan to park a car in the lot.

Although it doesn’t provide parking and dining discounts, it’s still a great deal, as it’s nearly the same price as one-day SeaWorld tickets. The price is $99.99.


5. SeaWorld San Diego Annual Passes

For a bit more than the Fun Card, a SeaWorld San Diego Annual Pass can add more value. And they’ve revised the passes to include even more for a limited time.

Your annual pass includes the new Spooktacular and Christmas festivities. I’ve listed some of the pass highlights below, but the list is long for each.

Silver Annual Pass

These annual passes include unlimited admission throughout the year with:

  • Unlimited admission for 12 months
  • Two free guest tickets
  • Free general parking
  • 10% Discount on dining
  • 20% Off merchandise
  • and more

(Price: $159/person). Monthly payment options are available!

Gold Annual Pass

The Gold Annual Pass also includes:

  • Unlimited Admission
  • Four free guest tickets
  • Free up-close parking
  • 30% off daily and all-season Discounted Quick Queue
  • Up to 30% off merchandise
  • 15% Off dining
  • and more

(Price: $168/person). Monthly payment options are available!

SeaWorld + AQUATICA Platinum Pass (11 Parks)

SeaWorld Platinum Pass holders receive:

  • Unlimited admission for 12 months to 11 SeaWorld Parks locations (VA, FL, CA, TX, PA)
  • Six free passes for friends
  • Free up-close parking
  • Free reserved show seating
  • Free animal experience
  • Free single-ride quick queue per day
  • Free-up-close parade viewing
  • Up to 50% off merchandise
  • 20% Off dining
  • One free Howl-O-Scream ticket on select dates
  • and more

(Price: $240/person). Monthly payment options are available!

Plus, you’ll also get access to SeaWorld San Diego, Orlando, and San Antonio; Busch Gardens Tampa Bay and Williamsburg; Aquatica San Diego, Orlando, and San Antonio; Adventure Island; Water Country USA; and Sesame Place with no blockout dates in addition to many other VIP benefits and discounts through all of 2024 with a Platinum Pass.

2-park season pass

Unlimited visits to both SeaWorld and Sesame Place San Diego through 12/31/2024!

Limited Time Offer! (Price: 199.99/person)

Holiday Event Admission Is Included!

Annual Pass holders receive free admission to Halloween Spooktacular and SeaWorld’s Christmas Celebration.

Snow at SeaWorld San Diego
Snow falls during the Christmas Celebration

6. Go San Diego (Most Popular San Diego Sightseeing Pass)

The Go San Diego pass saves up to 50% off of admission to 45 top San Diego attractions, including SeaWorld San Diego, in three simple steps:

  1. Choose the pass option that best suits you (you can buy an All-Inclusive pass or Explorer pass) and buy your pass in advance.
  2. Get your pass on a mobile device or print it at home.
  3. Show the pass at any eligible attraction, and you’re in for free.

All-Inclusive passes are available in 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, and 7-day options at different prices. With the Explorer pass, you’ll buy the option to see 2, 3, 4, 5, or 7 attractions and tours that you can choose as you go over the course of 60 days from first use.

Ensure the attractions you’d like to visit are listed on the option you buy. This is by far the most popular San Diego sightseeing pass.

See also: 10 Benefits of the Go San Diego Discounted Attractions Pass

ticket icon

TWO WAYS TO SAVE ON GO CITY SAN DIEGO

Use promo code GOSDO5LJM to apply an extra 5% off ALL Go San Diego sightseeing passes when you buy through Go City! This discount stacks on top of sale rates! Also, check aResTravel, where All-Inclusive and Explorer Passes are currently cheaper.

(Pass has limited value for families at many attractions during Kids Free October in San Diego — we recommend individual tickets during this timeframe instead.)


7. Bundle a Hotel with Discount SeaWorld San Diego Tickets

You can often save even more with a SeaWorld San Diego vacation package that includes your hotel and the cost of admission.

You can read my list of favorite hotels near SeaWorld San Diego for hotel advice.

Playful penguins outside at SeaWorld San Diego.
The penguins are always a hit.

8. San Diego CityPASS

San Diego CityPASS is a sightseeing pass that makes sense for people visiting LEGOLAND California and/or SeaWorld San Diego and San Diego Zoo or San Diego Zoo Safari Park and at least one of the other six participating attractions. You can read my full San Diego CityPASS review for more details.

Otherwise, it’s most cost-effective to purchase tickets separately using my discounts (I have a Zoo and Safari Park promo code) or the Go City San Diego pass, which has many more attractions on it. The pass types include:

  • SeaWorld San Diego + 3 Attractions
  • LEGOLAND California + 3 Attractions
  • SeaWorld San Diego and LEGOLAND California + 3 Attractions

The three attractions can be your choice of:

  • San Diego Zoo OR San Diego Zoo Safari Park (not both)
  • USS Midway Museum
  • City Cruises
  • Old Town Trolley Tours
  • Birch Aquarium at Scripps
  • Maritime Museum of San Diego

9. AAA Discount Tickets

Members of AAA can receive various SeaWorld San Diego discount ticket options throughout the year. You can check with your regional office.

However, be mindful that buying directly through SeaWorld San Diego or aRes Travel is often less expensive than using AAA member discounts.


10. Free Military SeaWorld San Diego Tickets

Active duty military members and veterans receive special SeaWorld theme park discounts through the Waves of Honor program. Active military personnel and three direct dependents will receive one complimentary admission to SeaWorld San Diego, valid through December 31, 2024. Additionally, the park now offers a SeaWorld San Diego 2024 Military Pass, which offers unlimited visits to the park and general parking through December 31, 2024.

Waves of Honor also offers Veterans complimentary admission to SeaWorld San Diego for themselves and up to three guests. Additionally, they can purchase up to six additional tickets at 50% off and get four All-Day Dining Deals for just $150, a 25% discount off the regular adult price. To claim these offers, verify your Veteran status through GovX by July 7, 2024.

Journey to Atlantis flume ride making a big splash at the end.

11. Kids Free Tickets in October

Thanks to the annual Kids Free October promotion in San Diego, kids ages 9 and under receive free park admission with a paid adult. The exact promotion details are usually released in late summer, but SeaWorld San Diego always participates. Our other major theme and amusement parks also participate, so it’s truly an excellent time to plan a San Diego family vacation.


12. Costco Discounts

Costco does not sell SeaWorld San Diego tickets online. I am leaving this here because people are constantly asking about this as a way to save. They stopped selling theme park tickets for the most part.

Every once in a while, one might pop up in a store, but it’s random, and you can’t depend on it as a way to save money. I haven’t seen any in San Diego warehouses in a long time.


13. Teacher and Preschool Fun Cards

These aren’t available anymore but watch for next year’s offer. SeaWorld San Diego offers unlimited free park admission to active and certified Southern California and Arizona K-12 teachers via its complimentary Teacher Fun Card.

The 2024 Teacher Fun Card is valid for unlimited admission through December 31, 2024. The first park visit must occur on or before May 31, 2024, to activate the card. Blockout dates apply.

Do you live in San Diego or Orange County? If so, I think this is a great deal when available! You’d pay $24 for unlimited visits for all of 2024 for ages 3–5. You must purchase and make one visit by June 16, 2024. Bring a passport or birth certificate each time to validate your child’s age. Adults must have their own admission, so I’d recommend a Fun Card or Annual Pass for young kids to take full advantage of these savings.


Quick Tips for Planning Your Day

Spending a half-day at the park is entirely doable if you are pressed for time. Plan to arrive in the morning, enjoy the shows and outdoor exhibits, grab lunch, see a few more things, and leave.

SeaWorld San Diego has a Weather-or-Not Assurance Policy for most tickets (complimentary and some others excluded), which means you can request a return visit if our weather isn’t cooperating. You’ll want to read the terms and conditions, but this applies when the park’s operating hours are negatively impacted and rides are closed for over 60 minutes during certain weather conditions. You can submit your request and learn more online.

Unless someone is physically required by someone in your party, or if you expect to make multiple trips to your car, I don’t think Preferred Parking is necessary.

The park also has pay-to-use full-body dryers near the water rides and splash pads.

Try to order quick-service food through the app, as the lines at popular restaurants can be long during peak days.

We have a full post with even more SeaWorld San Diego tips to help maximize your day!


FAQs About Buying SeaWorld San Diego Tickets & Saving Money in the Park

These are the most frequently asked questions that land in my inbox about admission to the park, upgrades, parking, and more. Or, consider this your TL;DR (too long; didn’t read).

How much are tickets to SeaWorld in San Diego?

The gate prices for general single-day admission vary depending on the day and time of year. However, currently, you can expect to pay around $114.99 at the gate for ages 3 and older at SeaWorld San Diego.

How can I get SeaWorld discount tickets?

I offer up-to-date tips for finding discounted tickets through trusted vendors. The theme park also offers Black Friday/Cyber Monday sales and other limited-time offers throughout the year.

DO SEAWORLD SAN DIEGO TICKETS INCLUDE RIDES?

Yes, you can access all rides in the park, except for the Bayside Skyride cable car ride, which costs $6 per person ages 3 and up.

Do children get into the park for free?

Children ages two and younger can enter the park for free year-round. However, SeaWorld San Diego participates in the annual Kids Free San Diego promotion in October. This is a county-wide promotion where kids aged 9 and younger receive free admission when accompanied by an adult with a qualifying ticket.

How many days do I need at SeaWorld San Diego?

If you are pressed for time, you can visit SeaWorld San Diego in a half-day. However, most families spend a full day without splitting visits into multiple days.

Believe it or not, multi-day visits are common, especially for families staying in nearby Mission Bay hotels. This is especially convenient when traveling with children who need to nap or don’t have the stamina for a full theme park day.

Can you buy packages that include SeaWorld and San Diego Zoo?

Yes, you can purchase several multi-park passes that include both theme parks.
SeaWorld and San Diego Zoo Combo Package includes one day of general admission to the San Diego Zoo and seven consecutive days of SeaWorld San Diego general admission.

The San Diego 3-For-1 ticket gets you admission into SeaWorld, San Diego Zoo, and San Diego Zoo Safari Park within seven days of visiting the first park.

The Go San Diego Pass grants you access to more than 50 attractions in the area, including both parks, depending on the pass that you buy.

Do You Have Tickets for Sesame Place San Diego?

Yes, you can purchase Sesame Place San Diego tickets, SeaWorld’s seasonal water park in Chula Vista through aRes Travel as well.

What kind of ticket upgrades are available? 

The park offers several different upgrades you can purchase, from animal encounters and reserved seating at shows to Quick Queue front-of-the-line access (we recommend this upgrade) and dining specials. These experiences are additional add-ons to your general admission ticket.

DOES SEAWORLD OFFER STUDENT DISCOUNTS?

No, SeaWorld does not offer student discounts. However, it’s always worth browsing the web for up-to-date deals and discounts offered at the various SeaWorld locations. 

IS THERE A SEAWORLD FIRST-RESPONDER TICKET DISCOUNT?

SeaWorld is not currently offering discounts for First Responders. However, it has done so previously. Please continue to check back in for updated discounts and deals available for First Responders. 

DOES SEAWORLD OFFER BUY-ONE-GET-ONE FREE TICKETS?

SeaWorld San Diego offers an incredible Kids Free Single-Day ticket annually for use in October (sometimes even September). This means that for every adult ticket purchased, one child between the ages of 3 and 9 can attend SeaWorld for free. All children under the age of 3 do not require a ticket upon entry.

And around Black Friday and Cyber Monday, they typically offer some BOGO on tickets and annual passes.

How Can I Get SeaWorld San Diego Discounts in the Park?

The best way to secure in-park discounts is through an annual pass. Depending on whether you choose Silver, Gold, or Platinum, you’ll receive 10-20% off dining and up to 50% off select merchandise purchases, in addition to other perks.

Do California residents get a discount at SeaWorld?

There is no specific California resident discount at SeaWorld San Diego currently. Sometimes, resident prices are on Fun Cards. However, residents visiting the park more than once a year should consider an annual pass or Fun Card to save money. We have the Silver Pass for this reason.

Does SeaWorld San Diego have an AARP Discount?

No. There is no AARP discount.

What is your personal experience with the park?

I live on Mount Soledad in La Jolla, and I can see SeaWorld San Diego from my backyard. Having grown up in Orange County, I’ve been visiting the park since I was a kid. And I get to visit now as a parent. Rescue Jr. area appeals to toddlers, the new roller coasters thrill teens, and there’s plenty to do for ages in between.

When marine mammals are in danger along the San Diego coastline, SeaWorld San Diego rescues them. I’ve called their rescue hotline when I’ve seen La Jolla seals and sea lions hurt or malnourished. They’ve always responded and have even followed up with me to let me know what happened to the animals.

What About Groupon SeaWorld Tickets?

Groupon occasionally sells discounted SeaWorld San Diego tickets, but the prices are usually the same or higher than those from other authorized sellers or the park directly. You can check Groupon.

Is Seaworld San Diego Worth it?

Yes, SeaWorld San Diego is worth it when you can save money on admission using the tips in this post, plan your day to minimize line waits, use money-saving hacks, and have the right expectations. This means you’ve researched whether the experience is worthwhile for your vacation or situation. We have lots of resources to help you decide. Plus, I’m happy to answer any questions you have about the park. You can refer to my full SeaWorld San Diego Guide

How do you buy discount SeaWorld San Diego tickets?

See also: Top 10 Things to Do in San Diego and Best Things to Do at Mission Bay

Learn also how to buy discounts:

Photo credits: Mike Aguilera/SeaWorld® San Diego

Katie Dillon is the managing editor of La Jolla Mom. She helps readers plan San Diego vacations through her hotel expertise (that stems from living in a Four Seasons hotel) and local connections. Readers have access to exclusive discounts on theme park tickets (like Disneyland and San Diego Zoo) and perks at luxury hotels worldwide through her. She also shares insider tips for visiting major cities worldwide, like Hong Kong, London, Paris, and Shanghai, that her family has either lived in or visits regularly (or both).

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8 Comments

  1. Do you feel like the current Seaworld specials are as good as they get, or should we hold out and wait for better?

  2. I was thinking about getting annual passes for my daughter and myself – we live in AZ but come over a few times a year. Would it make sense to buy one regular annual pass for the free parking and other benefits, and one Fun Card for the small savings, or is there something I am not considering? Thanks!

    1. I’ve never purchased that combo but I don’t see why it couldn’t work! I just updated the Fun Card link in this post as I clicked on the link I originally had and didn’t see it with the annual pass options. You’ll see it there now.

    1. I do not see the SoCal pass offered in 2018. It seems that the $109.99 pass is the best value because it includes parking.

  3. We’re a family of 4 planning to visit SeaWorld in May ‘21. Is it possible for me to buy an individual gold pass now, and then use the free friends tickets for my husband and two kids when we visit in May? I don’t see any restrictions on their website, but it seems too good to be true! Thanks!

    1. The Gold Pass is a great deal. The only thing I see is that it says “Available Soon” when it talks about the three guest passes and that they will be good on specified dates that are not published yet. I suspect it’s because they just announced today that rides are opening on April 12 and there are some restrictions our parks need to enforce when it comes to theme park rides — theme parks are only permitted to open to California residents. SeaWorld is open right now as an accredited zoo. I’d imagine the details will shake out in the next few days!