Go Los Angeles Card

How to Maximize Savings on LA Attractions with the Go Los Angeles Card

Go Los Angeles Card
••• Go Los Angeles Card from Smart Destinations. Courtesy of Smart Destinations

The Go Los Angeles Card from Smart Destinations was originally only an all-inclusive attraction pass that includes entry into a variety of theme parks, museums and attractions in three counties. The original pass is still available, but they now also offer passes for particular interests, or a customized build-your-own pass that offers a minimum 20% off the gate price of two or more attractions.

The original All-Inclusive Go Los Angeles Cards include 34 LA area attractions and can be purchased for time periods from one to seven days.

Adult card prices range from $85 for a 1-day card to $315 for a 7-day card. Cards for children under 13 range from $69 to $275. These prices are occasionally discounted even more through the website. The 7-day card is the best deal. Keep an eye out for sales of 10% off the 3-7-day cards.

The Build Your Own pass gives you 39 attractions to choose from in LA, plus 5 in San Diego and 3 in Las Vegas.

Attractions cards for Los Angeles and other cities are available at smartdestinations.com

Check out some Sample Go Los Angeles Card Itineraries

Pros

  • The sheer number and variety of attractions
  • Ease of using the card
  • Nice app describing the attractions
  • Includes FIVE theme parks
  • 2 - 7 day cards can be used over a 14 day period
  • The new Select Card options give you more choices of how to save.

Cons

  • Too many choices, too little time
  • Disneyland is not included.
  • Less value in winter with reduced theme park hours
  • Universal Studios is only included in the 3 to 7-day cards.
  • Universal Studios access is weekdays only.
  • Attractions that are open late often require you to use the card before 5:30 pm.
  • The discount shown on the website compared to the normal attraction price is usually from the gate price, not the online price, so the discounts are sometimes exaggerated from what you would spend without the card if you bought online, but there is usually still a savings. 
  • Not all the same attractions are available in the all-inclusive and build-your-own cards.

Highlights

The All-Inclusive Card

The Go Los Angeles Card all-inclusive card includes admission to Six Flags Magic Mountain, Knott's Berry Farm, Knott's Soak City and LEGOLAND plus studio tours of Sony Pictures and Warner Bros. Studios. The 3-7-day cards also include one weekday admission to Universal Studios Hollywood. The 7-day cards are the best deal by far. They give you 2 more days to visit all the attractions for just a few more dollars than the 5-day cards. You don't have to use your days consecutively as long as you use them within 14 days of first activating the card.

If you're not visiting theme parks, the value of this card depends on how much you want to push yourself. You’d have to fit three or four activities into a single day to make a 1-day card worthwhile, which seems like a lot of pressure when you're on vacation, but there are certain combinations that make it worthwhile.

A number of new activities were added in 2017, including the OUE Skyspace in Downtown LA, and the price has gone up slightly. Fitting in both the Sony and Warner Bros. tours along with a museum stop like Madame Tussauds is very doable (I've done it) and saves $50 with the one-day card. 

With the price increase, the one-day card is the same price as the gate admission price for 1 day at Magic Mountain, and the 3-day online advance ticket is a much better deal, so I wouldn't use the one-day card there, but it's still $10 less than the online price of an adult ticket to LEGOLAND, so it might be worth getting the card just for that. 

On the other hand, fitting in seven to 10 things in 7 days is easy. This is especially worthwhile if you include Universal Studios, Six Flags Magic Mountain, Knott's Berry Farm, Queen Mary, Aquarium of the Pacific, LA City Tour and Movie Stars Homes, and LEGOLAND.

After that, everything is bonus. Since you have 14 days to use up your card days, you can relax in between hectic days.

The attractions are widely dispersed geographically, so make sure that you plan in enough time for travel between attractions when planning to use this card.

If you are visiting LA in the winter, keep in mind that some attractions may be closed, only open on weekends or have reduced hours, which may affect how many venues you can fit in your itinerary.

Also, even when some attractions are open later, the card is good only until 5:30 pm. Once you're in, you can stay as long as you want, but you have to enter by 5:30. At some venues you can use your card to pick up your tickets by 5:30 and use them later.

Check out some Sample Go Los Angeles Card Itineraries

Build-Your-Own Go Los Angeles Card 

The Build-Your-Own Card supposedly guarantees a 20% discount off any three or more attractions that don't include Universal Studios, and 10% off if Universal is included. However, this is off the gate price. So in some instances, the discounted online price from the venue is more than 20% off, so the card isn't a good deal. For example, Knott's Berry Farm has a significantly discounted online price most of the year, and Six Flags Magic Mountain is also less online, so if you combined those two in a Build-Your-Own Card, you would actually pay $10 more than buying the two attractions on their websites.

However, for other attractions, there's either a smaller discount, like for the Starline Hop On, Hop Off tour, or no online discount, like the Redline Walking Tour, so even if it's not quite 20% off the online prices, it's still less.

The Build Your Own card also lets you add San Diego and Las Vegas attractions if you're exploring further afield. 

Value Package Themed Go Los Angeles Cards

In addition to the All-Inclusive and Build Your Own Cards, another option is to choose a pre-configured card with a pre-determined subset of attractions. These offers change. The discounts listed are from the gate price, so the savings compared to online prices may be less, depending on which attractions are included, but are still usually over 10%.

Extended Usage Period

Unlike the All-Inclusive cards, where you have to use your designated number of days within a 14-day period, in the Value Packages and the Build-Your-Own, you have 30 days to visit all the attractions in the pass, so it's also great if you're local and want to check out some attractions you haven't visited before, or recently.