Disney Tips – MagicBands and FastPass +
You book your Disney vacation to stay on property at one of the wonderful resorts, then you have to figure out the new MagicBands and FastPass+ system to make sure your vacation is absolutely magical. This is a new system for Disney and it still has some quirks to work out, including a lot of confusion that is still out there regarding the MagicBands and FastPass+ system. This post should help you figure it all out!
If you are staying on Disney property at one of the resorts, gone are the days of using a key card to open the door to your room, charge food and souvenirs to your room, and having your park tickets linked to a resort card. All of these things are now linked to the MagicBands. The MagicBands will be available to all members of your party, including children. When you book your Disney World Vacation, you can customize your MagicBands and order different colors for all members of the family. This can be done through your Disney account. If you don’t order your MagicBands prior to arrival, you will still receive them when you check in at your resort. The standard MagicBands are grey in color.
When we used the MagicBands back in March, I found the bands comfortable to wear, they are waterproof so you can go in the pool or on water rides, and if you need to remove it, that is easily accomplished. It was especially great for me with my Rheumatoid Arthritis, sometimes my hands are hurting and a key card would hurt to use. Now, I can just lay the band up to the panel on the door and it unlocks, so they are great for those of us with medical conditions and disabilities that had problems with key cards.
Prior to now, you could obtain a fastpass for a particular ride or attraction using your park ticket. You could have one fastpass at a time and it would require you getting to the ride or attraction and then having to come back. This was inconvenient for most. Disney implemented FastPass+ which is now linked to your MagicBands if you are staying on property or to a ticket card if you are staying off property.
FastPass+ allows you to log in up to 30 days prior to your park visit if you are staying off property, and 60 days prior to your park visit if you are staying on property, to select up to 3 rides or attractions that you want to FastPass each day. You can only pre-schedule 3 rides/attractions and they all have to be at the same park. This makes park hopping a bigger challenge. You can also use the new App that is available to schedule your FastPass on your mobile device or make changes to existing fastpass reservations.
Once you use the 3 fastpasses for a particular day, you can then schedule additional ones, one at a time, while you are in the park. *Tip: Schedule your FastPasses earlier in the day if possible if you think you want to try for additional ones through out the day. You can not schedule new fastpasses until you have used the 3 scheduled ones.
Some people are thrilled with this new FastPass system. There are some that are not as thrilled. I’m hearing stories of stand by lines being extremely long now that so many are using the FastPass system. Those that like to schedule their Disney visits down to the day, this will work out for you well. Those of us that play it by ear, may find that getting on the popular rides and in the newest attractions might be extremely difficult and require hours of waiting.
As Disney continues through the process of growing FastPass+, I’m hoping they will work out all the kinks as well as find a way to make the stand by lines not as long as they have gotten at this point. In Epcot, to see Elsa and Anna without a fastpass, you will wait up to 6 hours in some cases. That’s a little bit extreme if you ask me.
If you have used the new MagicBands and FastPass+ system, what are your thoughts on these two changes? Did you have problems linking your bands or did you find the stand by lines to be ridiculous now that everyone has FastPass+ reservations? I’d love to hear your feedback. The opinions of this system really vary from those that love it to those that are not so happy with it.