Disney’s Pop Century to Test Only Providing MagicBands to Guests

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©Disney

©Disney

Beginning today (November 14), guests arriving at Disney’s Pop Century Resort will be be issued only a MagicBand for use throughout their stay at the Walt Disney World Resort, further testing the MyMagic+ process.

The testing procedure will work the same way it previously had. Guests will continue to be able to engage in MyMagic+ testing in the same manner as other resort guests. If guests did not customize and receive MagicBands prior to their vacation, they will be provided at check in. The MagicBand will give guests access to all hotel and park activities, such as touch to pay, touch to enter, PhotoPass, and FastPass+.

If a guest would prefer, a RF-enabled Key To The World card can be issued instead. It will work in the same way the MagicBand would. It will not allow guests to obtain Legacy FASTPASS tickets because the magnetic strip on the back will be inactive. Guests who wish to use FastPass+ may do so using the My Disney Experience app, visiting Guest Relations, or stopping at a MyMagic+ kiosk.

As a reminder, this is currently in the testing phase at Disney’s Pop Century; however, if the test goes well, I expect it will make its way to the other resorts.

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Posted on November 14, 2013

25 Responses to “Disney’s Pop Century to Test Only Providing MagicBands to Guests”

  • by Rochelle King on November 14, 2013, at 3:56 pm EDT

    How long will this test last?

    • There is no time length noted, but if I had to take a wild stab at it, I’d say this is more or less a permanent move, unless the testing goes very poorly. I would guess that Disney is just calling it a test because, while they are testing the capabilities, it will likely go well and more or less like they predict it will. I would likely say that this test will then make it so the rest of the Disney resorts will follow suit.

      • I am confused. I stayed at Pop Century in October and they had the magic bands then. Why are they saying they are just testing it now? Or are they testing a mixture of magic bands and key cards?

        • They were testing MagicBands in October, but guests could still obtain Key to the World cards. The difference is with this new test, Key to the World cards will not be given to guests. This will be the first test of guests having just MagicBands and only MagicBands

  • Since this is being called a test, does that mean Pop guests will be able to opt out of the test and receive media that will enable them to pick legacy FPs? Or are they stuck making same-day FP+ reservations only? If that’s the case, I feel sorry for the Pop guests being forced into this and on such short notice.

  • From my understanding, no. It is either the MagicBand or the RF enabled Key To The World card. That’s it. If they haven’t already made their Fastpass+ selections, they will have to make them either day of or once they check in and receive their MagicBands.

    • Thanks–and like I said, that’s too bad for those guests who are arriving and being forced into this “test.” Imagine only being able to pick from whatever FP+s haven’t already been taken by those who’ve had access to FP+ for the previous weeks leading up to the trip. The pickings will likely be slim.

  • What if you have an annual pass or paper ticket with an active magnetic strip? WOuld you be able to put those tickets on the Magicbands and also use legacy FP?

    It seems odd that Disney is doing this before making Magicbands available to non-resort hotel guests. Is there going to be a system of FP+ for resort guests and legacy FP for non-resort? It seems like this is what they are moving toward.

  • This looks pretty cool, actually. Better than digging out cards all the time. Just hope the bands are securely fastened and won’t get lost/damaged easily. Would hate to come out of a ride with it gone from my wrist.

    • We were there the last week in October, the bands are secure. It was much easier than digging for stuff all the time. They are comfortable and I quickly forgot I was wearing it. Fell asleep one night with it on even. I did however take it on and off every time I had to use it. Entry, FP, purchases etc. I found it too awkward to line it up correctly. Even with taking it on and off a bunch of times a day (Went during food and wine, hit all the booths some multiple times) the fasteners didn’t “wear out”. It’s still as secure as the day I pulled it from the box.

  • by daffystardust on November 14, 2013, at 6:11 pm EDT

    Based on my experience just 2 weeks ago, they are not ready for this test. I constantly needed to pull out my KttW card because the Magic Band wasn’t doing what it was supposed to. I sure am glad I had that option!

  • Any idea if the following mediums will work to pull a legacy FP? My group is staying at Pop the first week of Dec, and we made our FP+ reservations with plans to pull a legacy FP or two throughout our stay. One of us (me) is pregnant so we made our FP+ attractions things we could all do together, but planned on the others being able to pull 1-2 legacy FPs per park for things they are going to do without me. Here’s what we have between the three of us:

    -an RFID enabled AP that is linked to a MagicBand
    -a paper Undercover Tourist ticket that is linked to a MB
    -an RFID Undercover Tourist ticket that is linked to a MB
    -KTTW cards from June 2013 and December 2012

    Thanks for the info!

  • I’d like to know that too. We are AP holders staying at Pop this Sat just to get magic bands. When I made FP+ reservations awhile back there were multiple top rides to choose, now only one good one and then ones you don’t even need a FP for. Guess I’ll let you guys know on Monday how it went!

    • Okay I just re-read it again and it looks as if they are only issuing magic bands. This looks as if it will limit us to using FP+ unless you can use your AP ticket obtain a Legacy Fast Pass. I believe that is how we used to do it. Somehow it would not be right to limit us to just those three a day when those not staying at a Disney resort can get up to 5 a day if they know how to time it. They are actually penalizing us for staying onsite that way. Yes it is easier to get some of the more popular ones but it still limits the number we can get per day especially with the new way they are doing the FP+. Now in two of the parks you can only choose one of the popular rides and two of the others. Not being able to do Legacy will not allow us to get a fast pass to the other popular ride if it is available.

    • Kathryn, at least you have your annual passes in hand. My wife and I just renewed at our local AAA office and got a voucher, but we were told that we can’t reserve anything on MyDisneyExperience until we have the new tickets in hand. Which we normally pick up at will-call when we arrive at the parks. We’re at the Pop in the second week of December. By then, the window to get the best fast passes will likely be nearly closed. I tried called Disney and considered buying via phone at the full price, but it’s the same deal. You have to pick up your tickets in Orlando before you can link them to your magic band. We were told this only affects passholders. Doesn’t seem like a nice way to treat folks who shell out for annual passes year after year. So now, 3 weeks out from our trip, we’re considering driving from the Miami area to Orlando next week just to get our tickets, then drive back. At least we can do that in one long day. Some folks live a lot farther away than us.

      • Update: I just learned an important lesson: Never believe what Disney customer service tells you on the phone. It turns out that seasonal/annual pass vouchers do contain numbers that can be entered into the My Disney Experience site. I discovered this while browsing another excellent thread on this blog: http://blog.touringplans.com/2013/11/11/side-magic-bands/
        We were able to link up our unredeemed passes to our Pop Century reservation and ADRs and also schedule fastpasses. When you go onto the screen to link tickets to your hotel reservation, there are many ticket options to choose from and ours was on the list. Passholders with unredeemed tickets, please be aware.

      • Try calling the internet help line for Disney reservations. They may be able to help you get your vouchers added. I have found them very helpful on many occasions. It doesn’t seem fair that you cannot make FP+ requests just because you have the voucher. They know you are staying onsite and they know you will have the magic bands. Seems to me they should be able to put them on there tickets or not. I really really hope they can help you. I know this has to be maddening for you.

      • Tested using AP cards for legacy FP today while staying at Pop. Soarin kiosk guy said it wouldn’t work since we used the bands to gain entry, but it did! I was also able to make FP+ reservations for 2 weeks from now when we don’t have resort reservations. So the message I’m seeing is, staying on site or AP holders get FP but offsite won’t in the future. Kind of like Universal does now.

  • Disney really has made this maddening for planners like myself. We are going down the week before Christmas for 5 days and got the park hopper option with the intent of using the FP+ for the evening and hopefully using the legacy FP+ in the morning. If LFP is not available, so be it, but what is my incentive to have the parkhopper option if I am limiting to using FP+ at one park???????? Is there any indication that FP+ will be available for more than one park? Would you recomend us cancelling the park hopper option to save some $ because our family’s favorites are the premium rides. Pretty ridiculous you can’t pick Test Track & Soarin on the same day, so unless you are there at rope drop, you will be waiting an hour for one of them.

  • Hello, Our family is going to Disneyworld for the first time the week after Christmas and staying at the Pop Century. When I logged in to My Disney Experience it looked like I could choose to customize our wristbands and have them mailed to us rather than pick them up on check in. I wasn’t sure if we should do this since they were still in “test mode.” Any advice? We definitely want to take advantage of the fast pass reservations since it will be the busiest time. Thanks in advance for any advice you can offer a Disney newbie!

    • by Karen Alexander on November 17, 2013, at 6:33 pm EDT

      I would customize and order them online. We have done this with our last two stays and it has worked out perfectly. We got the colors we wanted. Everything was loaded on, and we recieved them well before our trip. Just remember to put them on the day you travel as you will need them on check in.

    • Get them now! We were told my daughters would be sent to the resort (technical difficulty) but it never was.

  • The trip in December was a disaster. Stayed at Pop Century. Were not issued key to the world cards.
    Unable to access Fastpass machines in the parks. Limited to three reserved times in one park.
    No choice then but to wait in the long lines. I’ve been to Disney World 20+ times this was the worst.
    Why should WE be penalized for trying the new system out for them. I feel my trip should have been without charge.

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