Walt Disney World’s FastPass+ system and Magic Bands are great benefits that are part of the set of technologies collectively known as My Magic Plus.
My Magic Plus brings state of the are technology into the mix for Disney Vacation Planning.
With My Magic Plus you have an account which you can access via the web or your smartphone app which you’ll use to plan, schedule and execute your entire vacation. This account is called My Disney Experience (MDE). Hotel (non-military), dining, and entertainment reservations can all be made and organized on MDE.
Fast Pass Plus
FastPass Plus allows you to make reservations ahead of time for many of the most popular rides, shows, and events at WDW. You can do this from home while planning your vacation and can modify those plans on the fly once there with your smartphone app or at in park kiosks.
Disney has instituted new RFID technology into their ticketing, charging, and access systems.
RFID chips are now embedded into both regular plastic theme park tickets and the Magic Bands.
Whether in a ticket or band, these RFID Chips can perform the following functions when held up to a scanner:
- They Act As Your Room Keys
- They Act As Your Theme Park Entrance Tickets
- They Act As FastPass Plus Entrance Tickets
- They Act As Your Room Charge For Purchases
- They Act As Your PhotoPass/Memory Maker Token
- They Act As Your Disney Resort ID (for parking, pool access, account questions, etc.)
- And more
Disney’s My Magic Plus Is a Constantly Evolving Technology
Disney’s My Magic Plus has the ability to evolve and Disney has the ability to change numerous variables on how the parts of the system work together, add new features, and who can participate. They would do this to tweak the system to better serve their guests as a whole. For instance, on projected extreme attendance days they could reduce the number of FastPasses allowed at a particular park (they have yet to do this!).
Variables such as:
- Which Resort Guests may participate
- On what check-in dates
- How many FP+ guests are allowed per day
- The number of very popular attractions guests may FP+ per day
- The ratio of FP+ vs regular Fast Pass at each individual attraction
- FP+ at multiple parks per day (Merely a wish by fans now)
Can Military Salute Guests Use Disney’s My Magic Plus and FastPass Plus?
In exactly the same way as non-military guests do.
To use both Magic Bands and FastPass+ you will need to be staying at a Disney Resort. Disney resorts are currently very affordable using the Disney Armed Forces Salute.
Note: Shades of Green is a DoD facility, not a Disney resort. While they are eligible to participate in 60-Day FastPass+ reservations they are not eligible for free Magic Bands from WDW. You can buy your own to use if you’d though like!
Can you make FP+ reservations ahead of time using Military Salute tickets purchased on base?
Yes you can!
Disney Armed Forces Salute tickets purchased on base are not functional tickets and are called “exchange vouchers” in Disney speak. They are regular looking Disney tickets but must be activated upon arrival at Disney World.
See how to activate the tickets you purchased on base.
Note: Tickets sold by Shades of Green are now sold pre-activated!
FastPass Plus reservations made ahead of time against the vouchers are carried over to your actual tickets during the activation process.
How ToDo It
- Make your Disney resort reservation. Military Disney Tips recommends that you use our recommended Fee Free Travel Agent, Ears of Experience to do so. You’ll provide the names of everyone in the party.
- Create a My Disney Experience (MDE) Account (if you don’t have one already).
- Link your resort reservation to your MDE Account using the conformation number (you will then see everyone on your reservation in your account).
- Personalize Your Magic Bands in MDE, you may select the color and edit the name printed on each before they are mailed to you. More on how this works.
- Purchase your Disney Armed Forces Salute Tickets at your local base Ticket Office.
- Link your Salute Tickets in your MDE Account to each individual person (mark each ticket with the person’s name).
- Make your FP+ Selections, individually (if you’ll split up) or as a group.
- Upon Arrival, check in to your Disney Resort Hotel, they will activate your bands for your room key, charging (if desired) , and resort access (pool, parking).
- Activate your Salute Tickets, here is how. You are now all set.
- Check your FP+ reservations just to be sure they carried over.
- Enjoy your trip!
What If You Are Not Staying At A Disney Resort?
Offsite guests have the ability to make 30-day prior FastPass Plus reservations on their My Disney Experience account. Or same day reservations in the parks, you do so by visiting a FastPass+ kiosk to make the reservations on the day of your visit. You will use your RFID enabled plastic ticket to access the FastPass+ kiosks and touch sensors unless you’d like to buy your own Magic Bands.
What If You Don’t Have a Local Base?
You can purchase your Disney Armed Forces Salute tickets via phone and FedEx, see our post on how to do this.
Make Sure you:
Download the iPhone App
In the mean time, help keep our community updated. share your experiences and thoughts in the comments below!
This MDT Post By: Steve Bell
Steve is the the Military Disney Tips Founder. He a retired U.S. Military Member who's been touring the Disney Parks since 1971! Steve's mission is to help military families with their Disney vacations in every way. Check out Steve's Bio.
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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:
- Disney Veteran & Military Discount Eligibility Guide
- The Military Family’s Walt Disney World Comprehensive Vacation Planning and Preparation Guide
- Military Disney Tips Disney Packing Checklist
- Disney Military Tickets – Your Start to Finish Guide
- Resorts/Hotel Overview Page
- Dining Overview Page
- Transportation Overview Page
- Technology Overview Page
- Shades of Green, WDW’s Military Only Resort
Military Disney Tips' Recommended Disney Travel Agent
Ears of Experience Disney Only Travel Agency. Military family owned and operated! They know all the ins and outs of Disney military discounts!