Hidden Magic in Disney World

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Monthly Archives: January 2013


FP+ Walt Disney World – What we know.

The Last Update.   This is a fitting conclusion to the My Magic + Saga.  I do think the entire story is a little disenchanting and sad.  The Messy Business of Reinventing Happiness 

Last updated: 4/24/2014 – Additional Fastpasses available after using your original three.  Explanation.

4/6/2014. Swan and dolphin get 60 day advanced online booking.

4/3/2014 FP+ will be adding extra FP selections, offsite guests can fully participate, and hopping will be coming soon. Wdw blog post for more.

3/11/2014 Josh from easywdw.com published a blog post about standby wait times this year compared to the same time period last year.  Standby lines for the secondary rides are going up.

3/11/2014 MSN story about the FP+ “backlash”.

3/6/2014  Annual Pass members and off site guests are starting to get their opportunity. Story.

1/23/2014  first promotional video for FP+ from Disney.

1/18/2014 – Magic Kingdom – traditional fastpass system covered up.  Epcot and Hollywood Studios targeted next week.  This MiceChat report is informative.

1/1/2014 – full fastpass + to begin roll out soon.  Legacy FP to fade away, off site guests access to kiosks like at Animal Kingdom. Article.

12/13/2013 – Off Site Guests getting their first shot at FP+ at Disney Animal Kingdom Only. Story.
12/1/2013 – Next step in FP+, requiring all on site guests to use magic band and restrict them to 3 per day? It may have started today. A report.
11/17/2013  TIERS Re-Introduced in Fastpass+ system.  Now at Epcot and Hollywood Studios.  Here is a story from easywdw.com.

11/2/2013 – interesting look at magic band potential. Theme park Insider article

8/19/2013 – good report from D23 about fastpass+.

8/17/2013 – Several test runs have been occurring in August. The same style as December 2012. Participants are able to use the magicbands for FP+ and still pull regular fastpass.

7/21/2013 – micechat article discussing the “Why” of FP+ and MM+.
7/18/2013 – Disboard post listing available FP+ attractions and includes a priority level. Informative discussion.
7/13/2013 – Next round of testing will happen for Bay Lake Towers guests checking in July 22-24. It will be interesting to see if the testers are restricted to just FP+ and not be able to pull regular FP too.

7/12/2013 – Article describing Disney’s perception of how the trials are working. The magic bands are generating more money per guest.

7/12/2013 – Disney’s official FAQ page.

7/5/2013 – Six months after initial announcement and we know very little. The latest round of tests were carbon copies of the December tests and did not reveal anything new about the workings of FP+. But Lights, Motors, Action is ready to go with FP+ . Very strange.

6/2/2013. Official MyMagic+ and FP+ tests will be run in all the parks June 20 – June 26. For select guests. See DIS post.

5/23/2013 – The DIS unplugged videocast shared up to date information about magicbands (starting at 17:00) and FP+ (starting at 29:00).

5/17/2013 The Disney CFO explains the real reason for MyMagic + In this article.

4/14/2013. Testing in Animal Kingdom? Here is the story.

2/25/2013 – A Disney Guest lucked into a preview of the FP+ system on the app. See report here.

Timeline: According to several reports – roll out should start in selected resorts at WDW sometime this year. At this time the FP+ option has not been opened up for use.

Thoughtful Blogs exploring the issues of Park Planning and the FP+ issues:

What We Know:

You can read the fine print from the My Disney Experience Known Terms and Conditions:

  • The FP+ will be managed through the My Disney Experience website and apps.
  • The number of FP+ per day will be limited and vary based on park, ride, and day of the week, and time of the year.
  • Can be used in 1 Park per day (This would limit FP+ at two parks while hopping).
  • Can be used only once per ride per day
  • User can login and reserve rides and events up to 60 days in advance
  • Once a customer is using FP+ that customer will not be able to use the standard FP
  • One user will be able to book rides and events for multiple people online as long as a network of friends has been set up.
  • * Credit Cards will be linked up to accounts
  • FP+ will include a wide range of rides, character meet and greets, quick service meal ordering, select locations for parades, shows, and fireworks.
  • The number of days you can hold a FP+ reservation will be limited.
  • A user may change their reservations throughout the day (based on availibilty).
  • Disney has the right to re-assign FP+ for you in case of unplanned attraction down time.
  • Customers will be able to use their personal devices, computers, and concierge services in the resorts.
  • Patrons can choose to get email and text alerts and reminders throughout the day.
  • Based on Terms and Conditions and several articles – any valid MYW ticket will be able to link to My Disney Experience and then access FP+

My Disney Experience – Frequently Asked Questions explains about information collected about customers and how it is used.

Frommer’s Travel Guides Pan the FP+ – Article

BigAWL has a thread dedicated to My Disney Experience site and App.

NBC VIDEO that shows entries to park and discusses security.

CBS Local News Story describes the coming changes 2/11/2013.

Be Our Guest Fastpass + advance dining ordering – test run starting this week. -2/22/2013 –

Things verified from other sites:

WDWMagic FAQs summarizes nicely. And here is an updated FAQ July 2013.

  • Everyone will have access on site and off site.
  • No extra cost (unless you want buy bracelets)
  • AP holders will be included and be provided magicbands.
  • Customers can use their phones or kiosks in the park.

WDW Blog post from Tom Staggs, Chairman of the Parks.

  • Use smartphones and kiosks to keep adjusting all day as you go.
  • People can opt out or participate in as little or as much as they want.
  • AP holders will be fully included.
  • People will be able to customize their bands and purchase a wide range of styles.
  • Roll-out starts this spring.

MyMagic+ Patent information can be found here.

Good summary from Computerworld. Covers wristbands, security, and future. Nick Franklin V.P. Next Gen Technology confirms:

  • 3 FP+ for each day
  • Special bonus FP+ might be shared throughout the day. A good example here of a dumbo surprise.
  • Select seating for Parades, Fireworks, Meet and Greets will be available.
  • It will be available to all guests, it will be free, and it won’t be tiered based on resort.

The interactive device will be a magicband. More information from wdwinfo blog about how the magicbands will work.

Interesting read about the MyMagic+ patent at this site.

This article from Time does a nice job explaining the wristbands potential economic impact on Disney.

There will be a lot of personalized interactions throughout the parks. For example, at a Character meet, the character will greet a child with a first name and know any special occasions. New York Times has a good example here.

Easywdw has new changes to calendars. These official changes are coming out much earlier than normal check them out here and read the commentary.

the Infinity Game provides an additional source of revenue connected to the RFID bands. Check out the Forbes article and this article.

What happens to people without personal devices? Kiosks in Park (Video half way down shows kiosks) OR – you could buy a wi-fi enabled device that doesn’t need a service plan like an ipod touch version 4 or 5 to ensure connectivity. iPhones need to be 3GS or newer with 3.0 ios or newer.

Orlando Sentinel highlights the opening of Antarctica at Sea World and discusses impact on Disney.

What we still dont know and Speculation and/or Reliable Source Answer:

Ticket Questions:

  • IF we link a ticket with less days than resort days or less days than other people in the party, will Disney offer us immediate upgrade options?
  • How will it affect AP users not staying on site? “Our Annual Passholders are very important to us and were taking extra care to provide access to all the features and benefits of MyMagic+ ” – Tom Staggs, Chairman of the parks.
  • Will there be a limit on FP+ per quarter for AP holders?
  • How will it affect YES tickets?
  • Will Guest Assistance Card (GAC) be affected? Here is an article addressing this issue.
  • How will military discounts be affected. One question is if military discounts have to purchased on site, will the military families be able to book anything in advance?
  • Annual Pass on will call basis. How do AP holders participate with no voucher number? (On the app, there is a place to add your confirmation # to link your pass).


  • How will it affect DVC owners? Nearly everything suggests that DVC will have full access to all of FP+, new website going to be unveiled soon.
  • Will a valid DVC resort reservation be enough to book advanced FP+? (It looks like a Ticket will be needed )

Other Concerns

  • How will this affect Rider Swap?
  • Will there be a cancellation policy for changing FP+ from park to park, or canceling the day of?
  • On the 60th day will we be able to book our entire trip, or would we need to login everyday and book FP+?
  • What will the Ride Categories be and how many FP+ in each category? (Based on Test Runs: MK top tier – ???? DHS top tier – ????) Micechat has a nice article though.


  • BigAWL has a thread dedicated to the My Disney Experience and App.
  • Will we be able to see the FP+ inventory (shop around) before we purchase our tickets?
  • How much in advance will TSMM run out of FP+?
  • How will this affect Standby lines? According to the ny times article Disney believes this is the average patrons experience:

“Disney World guests currently plod through entrance turnstiles, redeeming paper tickets, and then decide what to ride; food and merchandise are bought with cash or credit cards. (Disney hotel key cards can also be used to charge items.) People race to FastPass kiosks, which dispense a limited number of free line-skipping tickets. But gridlock quickly sets in and most people wait. And wait.” – The FP+ is designed to “fix” that problem.

This Orlando Sentinal article shares more of Tom Staggs vision.

Pure Speculation:

  • Will deluxe resorts get more than 3 FP+?
  • Will people be able to purchase FP+ extra packages?
  • Will people be able to purchase FP+ one at a time on demand? (wild speculation)
  • Is this based on the followingYield Management concepts? check out this site for a description.
  • Will dynamic pricing be introduced next? Different park pricing for different days of the week, times of the year, parks? click here for hints from the Orlando Sentinal.
  • Is this all tied to together with the reduction of EMH?
  • Connected to rumors of No FD offers? (If extra FP+ -in addition to three free- are available for deluxe resorts, maybe)
  • Taking the non-expiration ticket offer off the webpage?

Opinions from disboard posts:

  • DIS unplugged Video Podcast 45 minutes of discussion about FP+.
  • Doug7856 provides a great explanation of how these changes affects individuals in different ways.
  • A balanced perspective from “educated user” Rileygirl can be found on this post!
  • Ninja mom talks from experience about meeting those pre arranged FP times.
  • MichiganDVC paints a very peaceful picture of how FP+ will work for him.
  • MAGICFOR2 wrote a letter to Disney and got a response.
  • Colleen27 – Fastpass+ system collapse under its own weight?
  • Finedice provides a scenario for bonus fastpass distribution (“surprise and delight” passes).
  • Excellent analysis from mbrittb00 about FP+ and FP coexisting. The numbers don’t look good.
  • Good post about fastpass + and possible motive of Disney.
  • ORIGINAL THREAD – FP+ What we know and what we want to know.