10 Questions and Answers about Disney’s Magic Bands!

February 1, 2014


In the past few months, we have had so many questions and concerns regarding the new FastPass+ system at Walt Disney World and the use of the new Magic Bands. We are doing our best of get the information we have available out there to all of you, to hopefully make you feel comfortable with all the changes. Our friends at Disney Dining put together a list of top Magic Band questions and answers, and I thought it was worth sharing with all of you, in hopes to maybe shed some light on the new system! Here’s what they had to say:

1. What exactly is a Magic Band?

A. Magic Bands are part of Disney’s “Next Gen” initiative at Walt Disney World Resort to integrate all aspects of the guests experience in their “My Disney Experience” account. The Magic Band is the physical part of this—an actual band that you wear on your wrist.

2. Who gets the Magic Bands?

A. Anyone staying onsite at a Walt Disney World owned & operated resort will receive a Magic Band. Offsite guests will not receive Magic Bands (including those staying at the Swan & Dolphin, Shades of Green & the Bonnet Creek area).

3. What does the Magic Band do?

A. The Magic Band is the key to everything in your My Disney Experience account. You use it to open your hotel door; if you have tickets you use it to enter the parks; if you left a credit card on file you use it to charge back to your room account (with a PIN code); if you have the Disney Dining Plan you use it to “pay” for your meals; if you’ve made your FastPass+ reservations you use it to enter the FastPass queues; if you are using Disney’s Magical Express you use it to check-in for your transfers. The band operates using RFID technology and to access all of the features you touch the Mickey head on the band to the Mickey head on the door, payment pad, entry point, etc.

4. Are the bands adjustable?

A. Yes, the band you will receive is one size fits all. You can adjust the band following the instructions that accompany the band—there is a gray outer edge to the band that makes it large enough for large adults, and that band can be removed to fit wrists as small as a toddler. There are several holes to make it fit your wrist.

5. Can I customize my band?

A. Yes. As long as you book your reservation far enough in advance you can choose the color you prefer (and the name on the inside of the band): pink, red, blue, green, orange, yellow & gray are the choices. Once you arrive in the World Disney offers several items that you can purchase to enhance your band—Covers, Magic Bandits (inserts that go in the holes) and Magic Sliders that fit over the center of the band. A google search will probably turn up some do-it-yourself ways to make your band your own as well.

6. Can I get it wet?

A. Yes! Keeping in mind popular attractions like Splash Mountain and Kali River Rapids, it is safe to get your Magic Band wet.

7. When do I get my Magic Band?

A. Currently, if you book more than 30 days in advance and live in the United States your bands will be mailed to you so you can take them on vacation with you. If you book your vacation less than 30 days in advance, or live outside the US, your bands will be waiting on you at your resort check-in.

8. What if I lose my Magic Band?

A. Don’t panic. You will have to give a 4 digit PIN code at check-in to access charging privileges with your band, and the entry points still utilize the fingerprint scan to match you to your band, so it can’t be used without that information. You will need to visit your resort front desk or guest relations to get a new band—and right now your only choice is gray.

9. What about these magical features I hear associated with the bands?

A. Although they are not fully rolled out at this time, there are some “bonus” features to the bands that will allow for an even more magical and personalized experience in the parks. You can already see evidence of these in some attractions, but you can look for things like personal greetings from characters, Mickey singing happy birthday (this is already happening), custom messages on attractions like it’s a small world (check out the video screens installed at the very end of the ride) and more.

10. Will I get a new Magic Band on every Disney trip?

A. Although the bands are designed to be reused, Disney is currently offering new Magic Bands each time you visit. It seems that as long as your Magic Band is listed as active in your My Disney Experience account you can continue to use it on a subsequent trip—even having more than 1 active Magic Band with you. A different one to match each outfit! There is a limited battery life for the RFID chip to transmit, so if your trips are spread out over a few years your original band might not work anymore.

Thank you to DisneyDining.com for the above information! We appreciate the help!

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