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How Do I Use My Lightning Lane Reservations

Top 5 Tips Purchasing Disney World Tickets

When it is time to use your Lightning Lane reservation, head to the attraction and look for the entrance to the Lightning Lane queue.

Then you will be asked to scan either your park ticket, Magic Band, or Magic Mobile pass on your phone.

You may have to scan your band or ticket one more time before you get on the ride.

Thats it you are now checked in for your Lightning Lane reservation and you can make another selection right away in the app.

Advice Tips And Tricks For Walt Disney World Tickets And Passes

10/19/21

There are loads of different Walt Disney World tickets and passes, and it can be very confusing to figure out which ones to buy and how to get the best discounts and deals on them. This page can help.

Annual Pass prices last went up on August 30, 2021. If you havent bought tickets since Disney went to a variable price per day for multi-day tickets, you may want to read our guide to Disney World tiered ticket pricing to get up to speed on the big pricing change.

In addition to Walt Disney World ticket discounts, there are lots of ways to maximize the use of your Disney World ticket. You can get a lot of extra value out of it if you know what youre doing!

Read the sections below to get specific tips for each of the major Disney World tickets as well as Disney passes sold in advance, at the gate and at the Disney resort hotels.

Jump to:

How To Get A Disney Magic Band

Now that we have gone over how does the Disney Magic Band work, lets discuss how to get one. Prior to 2021, Magic Bands were included in every Disney World visit, for free, in a basic array of colors. You could also purchase additional limited edition Magic Bands inside various locations in the park, or buy charms to decorate yours.

In January 2021, Magic Bands were no longer offered for free with your resort stay, but are still available for purchase. Once you book your resort stay, simply purchase Magic Bands on the My Disney Experience App.

If you find your vacation has arrived and you have forgotten to purchase a Magic Band, do not fret. Magic Bands can be purchased at shopping venues throughout the resort, with the biggest selection being found in Disney Springs.

Magic Bands can also be purchased online before your stay at Shop Disney.

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What About Park Hopper Plus Tickets

The Park Hopper Plus ticket option offers everything included with Park Hopper Tickets mentioned above, plus access to Typhoon Lagoon or Blizzard Beach water parks, ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex, Disneys Oak Trail Golf Course, and Winter Summerland or Fantasia Gardens mini golf.

With Park Hopper Plus tickets, you are eligible for the same number of Plus admissions as the number of days on your ticket. Meaning that if you have a 7-day Park Hopper Plus ticket, you also have 7 entrances the water parks, mini golf course, etc.

Whether this ticket is right for you really depends upon whether you want to do any of the parks beyond the 4 main theme parks. If you want to do one of the other things even once or twice, you come out ahead to purchase the Park Hopper Plus Tickets. We love both Typhoon Lagoon and Blizzard Beach, and enjoy both of the mini golf courses and recommend this ticket option to anyone who will be spending 6 days or more at Walt Disney World.

What Is A Disney Magic Band And Why Do I Want One

Surprise Trip to Disney World Ticket Template

To put it simply, a Disney Magic Band is your key to the kingdom. To answer how does the Disney Magic Band work requires explaining a few of the park and restaurant systems.

To gain access into any Disney park, you will need theme park tickets. The tickets can be linked to My Disney Experience and therefore your Magic Band. Each park entrance has scanning stations for your tickets.

If you have a magic band loaded with your park passes, all you need to do is tap your magic band, and be admitted into the park. This system is much easier than digging through your bag for a paper ticket or to find your phone to access your tickets, simply scan, and go.

Magic Bands also make entering the parks with a large group much easier, especially for children. Each child is able to scan their band, rather than waiting for mom or dad to hand them a ticket, or find it on their phone for each child.

Disney Magic Bands hold much more information than just park tickets. Magic Bands are linked to everything you need to visit Disney World. This includes resort room reservations, dining reservations, Disney Genie+, and lightning lane passes, and your credit card information for easier purchasing power.

With a Disney Magic Band, simply tap it on the receiver on your room door, and be granted quick access to your room. Or, have the hostess scan it at dining establishments to check into your advanced dining reservations.

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How Much Does Disney Genie+ Cost

In order to use the Genie+ Lightning Lanes, you will need to purchase Genie+ for that day.

Purchasing Genie+ costs $15 per day at Walt Disney World.

This is $15 per person per day, so you can see that the costs can really add up.

You do NOT have to buy it for every day of your ticket. More on this soon!

Now That Disney Mobile Magic Is Here Are Magic Bands Obsolete

How does the Disney Magic Band work compared to Mobile Magic? Disney describes their Mobile Magic as âa convenient and another contactless way to access MagicBand features, like theme park entry, through the power of eligible iPhones, Apple Watch or Google Pay enabled Android phones. Guests will be able to create a Disney MagicMobile pass through the My Disney Experience app and add it to their smart deviceâs digital wallet.â

Essentially, Disney Mobile Magic turns your phone into your Magic Band. To use this service, you will have to set it up in the My Disney Experience App. Once it is activated, you will simply hold your phone up to any location where a Magic Band is used.

This system does have its downsides. The Magic Bands reportedly scan faster, and work more often on the first scan.

The benefits of Magic Bands do outweigh the cost. First off, Magic Bands allow you to display your Disney fashion sense with an array of fun and exclusive designs.

Magic Bands are also the choice of families, as many younger members of a family do not have smartphones. Magic Bands do not require you to dig through your bag to find your phone, and scan faster than the Mobile Magic system.

It is worth noting that those with an apple watch can utilize the Mobile Magic service on their watch, which combines the benefits of Mobile Magic and the Magic Band system.

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What About The Water Park And Sports Option

The Water Park and Sports Option is available as an add-on to select Walt Disney World theme park tickets for $70 plus tax. This option allows guests to visit one theme park each day, plus various water park or sports experiences that same number of times.

The Water Park & Sports Option is valid at Disneys Typhoon Lagoon or Disneys Blizzard Beach water parks, ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex, Disneys Oak Trail Golf Course, FootGolf at Disneys Oak Trail Golf Course, Disneys Fantasia Gardens Miniature Golf Course, or Disneys Winter Summerland Miniature Golf Course.

Basically, this ticket is the non-park hopper version of the aforementioned Park Hopper Plus ticket option. The analysis for the Water Park and Sports Ticket Option is identical to the Park Hopper Plus, but for those who only want to do one theme park per day. We generally favor the Park Hopper Plus option as it offers great flexibility and the upgrade cost to that is insignificant, but thats just us.

Where Can You Activate Your Tickets

Disney World Tickets EXPLAINED

Disney Armed Forces Salute Tickets can be activated at the following locations:

Walt Disney World Locations:

  • All four theme park ticket and Guest Relations windows
  • The Transportation and Ticket Center Ticket or Guest Relations windows
  • Magic Kingdom Ticket or Guest Relations windows
  • Epcot Main Entrance or International Gateway Ticket or Guest Relations windows
  • Hollywood Studios Ticket or Guest Relations windows
  • Animal Kingdom Ticket or Guest Relations windows
  • Both Water Parks
  • Disney Springs Ticket Center
  • Theme Park locations open at least 1 hour prior to park opening.

    Note: Not all of these locations are not mentioned on the back of the paper exchange vouchers, but you can activate tickets at all of the above locations!

    MDT Tip: You cannot activate tickets purchased on base at Shades of Green or at your Walt Disney World Resort Hotel!

    Disneyland Locations:

    • The Ticket/Guest Relations booth between Disneyland and California Adventure
    • The Downtown Disney Monorail Station with service to Disneylands Tomorrowland

    Special Purchase Notes for Disneyland:

    You may buy your tickets directly from your Disneyland Resort Hotel Front Desk , or go the theme park Ticket and Guest Relations locations.

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    Why Is There This Activation Process

    Disney allows military resellers to sell these tickets based upon a contract. But, Disney depends on their own ticketing computer system to monitor and control the use of these tickets. This prevents the tickets from being used in an unauthorized manner.

    During each individual Armed Forces Salute offer Disney sets exactly how many of the steeply discounted military tickets that each military member is allowed to use. During the 2020 Disney Armed Forces Salute the limit is 6 tickets during the offer period .

    When the military member activates these tickets, Disney gathers information on the military member, which they tie to the tickets in their system. This is what tracks the number of tickets that you have activated during the current offer.

    Once the tickets have been activated your party does not need to stay together. You can all go to different parks, at different times, on different days, or on any day through the end of the Salute offer.

    Activating a ticket also allows that ticket to be used on your phones Disneyland Park app, or with your Magic Band as long as both are linked to the same person in your My Disney Experience account and the Disneyland app.

    Non-Disney Resort guests can buy Magic Bands ahead of time from the Disney Store.

    Can I Still Use A Magic Band At Disney Parks

    Yes! Magic Bands can still be used for all of their intended purposes inside the Disney World parks, resorts, and restaurants. We recently took a trip to the house of mouse, and while the Magic Bands were no longer included, we were able to purchase and use them.

    We find magic bands a much easier system than keeping all the information on your phone. It may not seem to be a hassle to pull out your phone and access an app, or find your pass card, but during peak and rushed times, the Magic Bands are much more efficient.

    Magic Bands you have used in the past can still be sued for future visits. How does the Disney Magic Band work if it is from a previous trip? To use an old or newly purchased Magic Band it will need to be activated. To activate your magic Bands to ensure they work during your trip, first, open up the My Disney Experience App.

    Note: Be sure your tickets, and resort are already linked to your My Disney Experience Account. To learn more about this,

    In the app, click the three lines in the bottom right hand corner. The scroll down, and click âMy Profile,â and then click âMagic Bands and Cards.â Next, click âLink a Magic Band or card.â And then type in the ID number of the Magic Band. This number can be found on the back of the Magic Band, where your name is written.

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    Its Easy If You Know How

    I do get a lot of questions on this. So I hope this clears up any confusion on the subject of Disney Armed Forces Salute ticket activation!

    Feel Free to ask Questions in the Comments Section below!

    Planning a Disney Trip? Want to get the best military discounts that are available? Feeling a little confused?

    See Our Great Disney Discount and Planning Info:

    What Is Disney Genie+

    Disney Discounts

    Genie Plus is what replaced the FastPass system at Disney World in 2021.

    Genie+ will give you much shorter waits for some rides for a fee.

    You access Genie+ in the My Disney Experience app. If you purchase it you can make Lightning Lane selections throughout the day.

    Read on to learn how to use Genie Plus and how to decide if you should spend the extra money for it on your vacation!

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    Are Annual Passes For You

    For some people an annual pass is the most economical choice. Whether a pass will be cheaper than tickets depends somewhat on the time of year you will be going to the parks. If you have two trips planned in one year , its worth calculating it all out depending on exactly how many days you plan to visit in each trip, an annual pass might price out lower or higher than tickets.

    If you are not a Florida resident or DVC member, you can only get the top-level Incredi-Pass. As a rule of thumb, that annual pass might pay off if you plan to visit the parks 18 days or more in 1-2 trips, or 14 days or more on 3+ trips.

    If you are a DVC member or Florida resident, and dont want to visit during the Christmas season, the Sorcerer Pass is a better deal, but it still wont pay off until roughly 12 days in 1-2 visits, or 11 days in 3+ visits.

    After your second year of passholding, you get renewal prices , and the numbers get better.

    An Annual Pass is good for 366 days. If you buy one on January 8, 2021, it will be valid through January 8, 2022! So if you take an annual vacation to Walt Disney World, just make it a little earlier the second year, and you can use the previous years pass. For instance, if you bought and activated your pass on January 8, 2021 and vacationed January 8-14, 2021, come back the next year from January 2-8, 2022 and your passes will still be valid. Bingo free admission on your second vacation!

    How Do The Lightning Lanes Work At Disney World

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    First, there are two different types of Lightning Lane attractions at Disney World.

    In a perfect world, Disney would have given them distinct names to keep confusion down. Unfortunately, we dont live in that perfect world!

    First, purchasing Genie+ for the day will allow you to use the Lightning Lane at more than 40 attractions across the four parks.

    These are called the Genie+ Lightning Lane attractions.

    Whether you purchase Genie+ or not, you can also buy access to the Lightning Lane at the eight most in-demand attractions.

    These are called the Individual Lightning Lane attractions.

    Genie+ wont work to get you access to the Lightning Lane at these eight rides. You have to pay individually for these attractions.

    To help with confusion, Im going to explain these one at a time. Ive also color-coded the terms throughout the post to help you keep them straight!

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    What About An Annual Pass

    Right now, new Annual Passes are not being sold. However, Walt Disney World has indicated they will return before the 50th Anniversary, which starts on October 1, 2021. As you can read in When Will Walt Disney World Resume Annual Pass Sales?, our strong expectation is that theyll go on sale in the second half of this month.

    In the past, it has made sense to consider an AP for your trip to Walt Disney World. After Annual Pass tiers changed, that now is typically not true unless you are a Florida resident or are a Disney super fan who will travel to Florida 2-3 times per year. For an Annual Pass to be a better value than normal park tickets, most prospective buyers would need to spend two weeks in the parks.

    Beyond that, there is a 10% discount on food and non-alcoholic beverages at participating restaurants at Walt Disney World. The discount includes some of our favorite restaurants you can see the full list of participating restaurants hereits a nice mix of counter service and table service locations. Additionally, APs now receive 20% off most merchandise purchases.

    Thanks to these benefits, if youre taking a trip slightly shorter than 15 days or if youre visiting for two 5+ day trips within a 12-month window it still might make sense to buy Annual Passes.

    Benefits Of Being A Disney Employee

    Get Two Additional Days of Walt Disney World Theme Park Tickets With This New Offer

    Disney cast members enjoy the following benefits:

    • Weekly pay with direct deposit available.
    • Affordable health insurance for full-time positions.
    • Retirement plans and employee stock purchase options.
    • Paid time off .
    • Vacation time accrues based on position, length of service, and hours worked.
    • Tuition assistance with 100% tuition paid at Disney Aspire network schools for full-time and part-time employees.
    • On-site wellness and fitness classes, programs, and seminars.
    • Child care support.
    • Career development through online classes and learning tools.
    • Complimentary theme park admission for full-time and part-time positions after 2 weeks of employment.
    • Discounts on recreation, dining, merchandise, and select hotels.
    • Volunteer opportunities through Disney VoluntEARS.
    • Disney Commuter Assistance to help employees find resources and options.

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