FAQ about MyMagic+, MagicBands and Fastpass+

Over the past few weeks, there have been several new developments regarding MyMagic+, MagicBands and FastPass+. It’s certainly hard to keep up, but we’ve compiled several new developments and frequently asked questions that have surfaced recently.

Here is what we know:

The basics

MyMagic+ encompasses all of the “next-gen” products and services being offered by Disney. These services include FastPass+, the My Disney Experience app (a smartphone app that is available to all guests and lists attraction wait times) and the MagicBand. The MagicBand will contain your park ticket, room entry, payment method, FastPass+ reservations and more. When it’s time for your FastPass+ reservation, you will proceed to the FastPass+ entrance and touch your MagicBand or RFID key to the touch point.

MagicBands

Bands-2-500x283MagicBands are the RFID wristbands that will forever change theme park touring at Walt Disney World.

When the program launches later this year to all guests, the bands will be offered in 8-10 color choices and will be shipped to eligible guests’ addresses 10-30 days prior to arrival. Guests will likely receive a gray wristband if they book within 5 days of arrival.

FastPass+

FastPass+FastPass+ will allow guests to make attraction, character greeting and other event reservations 60 days prior to arrival.

Guests will select their three experiences and a time of day (early morning, midday, evening, etc.). As of right now, guests will only be able to reserve FastPass+ attractions at one park per day. Guests must return within the assigned time window.

Is there a cost?

There is no cost for MyMagic+ and FastPass+. However, it remains unclear if all of the features of the next-gen project will be available to all guests. Disney says MyMagic+ is free to “eligible guests” – but it remains unclear which guests will be “eligible.” It’s possible some features will only be available to guests staying on property at Walt Disney World.

CIMG4035Can I use FASTPASS and FastPass+?

No. Okay fine, I will elaborate. If you’re eligible for FastPass+, your ticket will not work on the traditional FASTPASS machine. Here’s the answer directly from Disney:

“While FASTPASS service and FastPass+ service are both currently available, if you are FastPass+ eligible and you entered the park with a ticket linked to My Disney Experience by using your MagicBand or card, then you are not able to use FASTPASS service.”

It will be interesting to see what happens when FastPass+ is turned on for “everyone.” Obviously, this won’t happen until Disney is ready (especially if it means some tickets will not work on FASTPASS machines and others won’t).

As it appears now, most attractions/shows/character greetings will be included in FastPass+. Many attractions that are not current FASTPASS attractions are being included in the FastPass+. WDWMAGIC has a current list, but this list will likely need to be updated soon.

eligibleTesting in progress. Am I eligible?

Disney just finished its second round of FastPass+ and MyMagic+ guest testing last month. Over 1,000 guests took part in the test. Another round of testing is expected for DVC guests staying at Bay Lake Tower on July 22 and is also scheduled from Aug. 2 to Aug. 25 for guests staying at Contemporary, Animal Kingdom Lodge, Yacht/Beach and Pop Century.

“Test participants will be able to touch to enter their rooms, touch to enter the park and touch to pay at eligible locations starting upon check-in and continuing through their departure. They also will make and redeem FastPass+ selections at all four theme parks during their stay.”

If you think you’re eligible for the test, you can log on to MyDisneyExperience.com and link your reservation to your account. If you’re not eligible, you’ll see a “your party is ineligible” message.

Ride spacing: What does that mean?

One of the often-debated topics about FastPass+ is ride spacing. How much time will be left between each attraction? The system will take into account the location of an attraction.

Here’s an example of an actual schedule:

Mission: SPACE 3:40- 4:40 pm
Test Track 4:45 – 5:45 pm
Soarin’ 6:25 – 7:25 pm

FastPicks? What is that?

Disney has added an option for guests who do not want to select their attractions:

“If you aren’t sure what to select, try a FastPicks recommendation to quickly add multiple FastPass+ options to your plans—nothing could be simpler!”

This is obviously a way for Disney to move guests to less popular attractions. It will be interesting to see if people actually use this feature.

What about Annual Passholders?

Eventually, Annual Passholders will receive a MagicBand. However, the timetable has not been provided (or even rumored). The MagicBand will be provided for free, but passholders can expect to pay for a replacement if they lose their MagicBand. Other details around the AP experience are still being figured out.

magicbandWhen can we expect MyMagic+ and FastPass+ to be available to everyone?

Disney Parks and Resorts Chairman Tom Staggs has said multiple times the program will launch “later this year.” However, that’s all we’re going to get from Staggs and Disney. Staggs recently told Bloomberg that MyMagic+ boosted sales during recent test periods. For this reason, I would expect the program to launch as soon as possible. :) If successful, the rumored “test” from Aug. 2 to Aug. 25 at Contemporary, Animal Kingdom Lodge, Yacht/Beach and Pop Century could result in the official roll out in September.

What about privacy?

This is a great question. I won’t pretend to understand everything surrounding MyMagic+ and privacy – so here’s a link to the full disclosure from Walt Disney World.

My take

Many people are concerned about how the MyMagic+ and FastPass+ experience will take away from the experience of leisurely touring the parks. Some worry that having to book attractions in advance will cause unneeded stress for tourists. I couldn’t disagree more. How is a death walk to Toy Story Mania to stand in a line to obtain a FASTPASS (!!!!) an enjoyable experience? I would much rather reserve this attraction before my visit and take my chances with other attractions. However, I won’t go into depth about how FastPass+ will impact/change our touring habits until the program is outlined in its entirety by Disney. We all know things can and will change before it launches to the general public. Unlike most, I’m not really concerned with the privacy aspect of MyMagic+. However, this could change.

I will be watching closely as the next round of testing is conducted later this month. Look for an updated post with new FAQ and details about MyMagic+ and FastPass+ next month. Until then, you can read the official FAQ from Disney that answers some general questions about use inside the parks.

What questions or concerns do you have about MyMagic+ and FastPass+? Leave your question in the comments below and I will do my best to find the answer.

About these ads

13 thoughts on “FAQ about MyMagic+, MagicBands and Fastpass+

  1. I have to admit, I have some reservations about this. While I agree that in certain instances — particularly Toy Story Mania and Soaring — having an advance reservation, as it were, will be awesome. But it just feels as if it sucks a whole lot of spontanaiety out of a trip. Let’s say you plan 60 days in advance which parks to be in and what rides to hit… and then, that morning, you wake up and it turns out it’s a rainy day. Although you’d planned to hit Animal Kingdom, you decide you’d rather do Epcot because it’s a better “rainy day” park in your mind. You now not only lose the Fastpass + reservations you’d made, but as an added “bonus”, you can’t get any Fastpasses in the park you actually go to that day. Meanwhile, it’s not at all surprising that people spend more with the bracelets… the more you can take the actual handing over of money or a credit card out of the equation, the more people will spend. It doesn’t feel like you’re spending “real” money, so you tend not to actually stop and think about how much you’re spending.

    • I would agree with all these points. However, the “rainy day” situation will likely be addressed by Disney. I think they’ll find a way to accommodate those guests by either enabling changes to FastPass+ reservations or something else. It will be interesting to see how they handle that specific issue.

    • Supposedly you will be able to make changes to your fastpass+ reservations through the mobile app at anytime, subject to fastpass availability. As the time you make your reservation gets closer to the time you want to ride, the more fastpass+ will resemble to traditional fastpass. Hopefully they wont make all slots available in advance.

  2. Pingback: How to make FastPass+ reservations online (photo walk-through) | The Social Mouse

  3. Pingback: MyMagic+ and FastPass+ test set for Aug. 2-Aug. 25, all attractions included | The Social Mouse

  4. I think the rumored test in August is true. My honeymoon starts on August 26th at the Animal Kingdom Lodge and I got my magicbands :)

  5. Pingback: MyMagic+ monitors installed at Disney’s Hollywood Studios | The Social Mouse

  6. I have made a reservation for two to stay at a Disney resort and we both have an account with My Disney Experience App. When I go to the fast pass option it says that I am eligible and my other party is not, why is that? Does that mean we both can’t get a fast pass together?

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s