MagicBands are cool. Kids love them and parents find them very convenient. Before each trip we always plan, and sometimes even coordinate, our MagicBand colors as a family!
What is a MagicBand?
MagicBands are waterproof bracelets that use RF technology to store your specific information. You match them up to various touch points throughout your Disney World vacation, giving you access to the various plans you have made with My Disney Experience.
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What does it do?
MagicBands serve many purposes. They are worn throughout your trip and are used in the following ways:
- Check in to Magical Express – Disney’s Magical Express is the complimentary transportation service only available to Disney World resort guests. It must be booked in advance. Magical Express transports you and your luggage to and from Orlando International Airport. You will need to use your MagicBand upon checking in for Magical Express. (You can also use your Magical Express paperwork if your MagicBands are waiting for you at your resort).
- Room Key – Tap the Mickey on the center of your MagicBand to the receiver next to your hotel room to unlock the door. Our kids love doing this so much that they will sometimes go into the room one at a time so that they each get a turn. Everyone is happy!
- Park Ticket – Entrance to the theme parks and water parks is made more fun! Just tap your MagicBand to the touchpoint instead of a ticket, as long as your tickets are linked to your MagicBand through My Disney Experience. (If you purchased your vacation package through the Walt Disney World Travel Company they should already be linked for you.) Bonus: You are also able to link special tickets, such as Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party tickets, to your MagicBand.
- Check in for FastPass+ Reservations – Tap your MagicBand on the receiver at the entrance to the attraction to redeem your FastPass+ reservation.
- Redeem Dining Plan Credits – Use your MagicBand to utilize your Disney Dining Plan meal and snack credits. When it is time to pay, you will tap the center of your MagicBand to the receiver and enter your unique PIN. The number of credits you’re using will be deducted from your available credits. (Find more information about the Disney Dining Plan here.)
- Make Charges to your Resort Room – You are able to purchase items such as souvenirs and food at most locations throughout the parks and resorts. You will be asked to enter your PIN to validate the purchase. The charges will be added to your room total. You receive a receipt of purchases made at each location when you check out.
- Connect Memory Maker and Photopass to your Account – After each set of photos taken by PhotoPass photographers, you will tap your MagicBand on the receiver. This automatically links photos to your Memory Maker account. All photos taken on rides throughout Disney World also automatically link to your memory maker account.
- It’s Reusable – Your MagicBand is reusable, meaning you can link it to tickets bought for future trips.
- If lost, it can be deactivated – If you lose your MagicBand while in Disney World, you can report it to Guest Relations or your hotel. The cast member will deactivate it for you. You are also able to deactivate it yourself through the My Disney Experience app.
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How do I get one?
As of now, these are only available at Walt Disney World. WDW resort guests and Walt Disney World Annual Passholders receive complimentary MagicBands. They are shipped to your home if customized on MDE at least 11 days prior to arrival at WDW. Otherwise, you can pick them up at the front desk when checking in at your resort.
You are also able to purchase MagicBands online, through the Shop Disney Parks app, or at various retailers in Disney World.
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How do I customize it?
There are 8 different solid colors to chose from. You have to sign in to My Disney Experience to make your selection and to choose the name that will be written inside. While you are there, you are also able to link any tickets to your MagicBand. Keep in mind that your MagicBands may already be linked to your tickets if you purchased a vacation package through the Walt Disney Travel Company.
You are also able to purchase a MagicBand at Tomorrowland Light & Power Co. in Magic Kingdom. There you can chose different images and color combinations to create a personalized MagicBand.
MagicBandits are available for purchase. These are decorations that fit into the holes on the adjustable part of the MagicBand. Just beware that they may fall out and cause some tears with the little ones!
In addition, the center of the MagicBand 2 is able to be taken out and placed into MagicKeepers. These are items such as keychains, lanyards, etc. This option is ideal for people who would rather not wear a bracelet type device.
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What are your thoughts on MagicBands?
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17 thoughts on “Disney World’s MagicBands 101”
Yay!!! I remember when these arrived before our Disney trip. SO much fun!
They definitely mean the trip is getting close. Time to get excited!
Wow, what an efficient and convenient way to travel! I’m so glad to learn about these magic bands; I hadn’t heard of them before. Thanks so much for sharing!
Paula, I’m glad you found this post useful. They are so useful!
I had never even heard of these, it seems like they would be super useful though.
Emily they are awesome! You really don’t even need to take out your wallet on vacation with these.
Our family LOVES Disneyland! We don’t do Disney World as much but since DL is slowly playing with transitioning to a system like this it’s still good info to have. 🙂
Ginger, we haven’t been to Disneyland yet. We will someday though!
These are a life saver. We had this on the Disney cruise and it gave my 9 year old true independence. He was able to check himself in and out of the activity room. I haven’t been to Disney in a while bit this is a must need items!
Darla, they are super convenient and the kids absolutely love them!
Great post! We are hoping to take our kids to Disney next year so this post will be helpful, pinning!
Thank you Crystal! Let me know if you have any planning questions. I’d be happy to help!
I’m also nee to the concept of magic bands. But it seems like they make travelling to Disney a breeze!
Josie, they make everything so easy. We use online check in and get a text with our room number, so we are able to go straight to our room when we arrive!
I’m definitely one of those people who has heard of magic bands but didn’t know what they were for! I love this idea and know my boys will love it too! What a great idea to add to the anticipation of the trip!
They are wonderful and the kids love them! My kids were getting all excited when I was taking the pictures for this post. I had to let them know what I was doing so they didn’t expect to go to Disney this week. 🙂
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