MyDisneyExperience

Special MagicBands and Gift Packaging For 2018 Walt Disney World Vacations

by on October 10, 2017

Holiday package MagicBand from Walt Disney World

Thanks to Small World Vacations for the heads up.

Disney is offering new MagicBands which will arrive in special packaging when you book your 2018 Walt Disney World vacation under the Disney Gift Vacation Package offer. This can be booked through your travel agent, by calling Disney, or online with this package.

Booking window: October 10 – November 15, 2017

Travel window: January 1 to December 31, 2018

Other info: minimum three night stay. If you want to receive the bands by December 15, Disney says to order the bands through MyDisneyExperience by December 1. This offer does not seem to be available for room-only bookings. For more details, contact Disney or your travel agent.

What you get: Holiday MagicBands in a specially themed box. This is not a discount.

 

Updates for Walt Disney World’s My Disney Experience App

by on August 23, 2017

Yesterday, Disney released a brand new update for its My Disney Experience app and let me tell you, this was a fantastic update! It includes some perks that have long been asked, as well as some other very helpful tools for those traveling to Walt Disney World.

First things first, Guests can now keep track of their purchases that are charged to their room’s hotel account. Genius! Now, we can see, at a glance, right from our phones how much our bill will be, instead of getting that shocked expression at the end of your trip when you paid your bill.

My Disney Experience Updates

 

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Satu’li Canteen And Mobile Ordering Rejuvenate Quick Service Disney Dining

by on May 17, 2017

Pandora - The World of AvatarRecently, I was lucky enough to attend an Annual Passholder Preview for Pandora – The World of Avatar at Disney’s Animal Kingdom, and of course, as your resident dining reviewer, my first priority was trying out all the new food options available at the land’s quick service restaurant, Satu’li Canteen. I was also excited to try out the new mobile ordering option from the My Disney Experience app, currently exclusively used at Satu’li Canteen. I’ll run through the process of how to use mobile ordering (it’s super easy!), and give a few first impressions of the food I sampled in this Satu’li Canteen review.

Mobile Ordering Basics

First things first, you have to have the My Disney Experience app installed on your mobile device, and for optimal use, you’ve got to have location services and notifications enabled for app use. Currently, mobile ordering does not support the use of the Disney Dining Plan for payment, either – only credit cards, so keep in mind if you want to make use of your plan credits, you’ll need to order at the counter as you would normally at a quick service location. Also keep in mind, mobile ordering is only available for guests taking part in a preview of Pandora at this time, as the land is not yet open to everyone (May 27th is almost here, though!)

Mobile ordering is a pretty straightforward process (if you’ve ever used UberEats, you’ll be an expert already) – essentially, you order your food on the app, then once you arrive at the restaurant, you click “I’m here!”, at which point they’ll make your order. They’ll notify you once it’s ready, and since you’ve already paid through the app, you simple pick up your food and you’re on your way. Think of mobile ordering as a FastPass+ to skip the sometimes-lengthy ordering lines at every quick service restaurant.

The app will remind you what menu you’re ordering from (breakfast vs lunch/dinner), and will tell you the cut-off time for picking up your mobile order from Satu’li Canteen. At the top of several pages in the process, I saw a warning saying I had to pick up my order before 8:00 PM (when the restaurant closes). Basically, once a meal period starts for that day, you can order anytime between opening and close, and just show up when you’re ready. Simple, right? Very… I was really impressed that I didn’t have to pick a time to return, but I’d also warn to keep in mind that the food isn’t made until you arrive (more on that shortly), so if you pick a busy time of day to return, you’ll still wait a little for your food.

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Using My Disney Experience: Do’s and Do Not’s

by on December 16, 2016

My Disney Experience: it’s the Walt Disney World vacation necessity! Your My Disney Experience account links together your ticket media, resort reservations, dining reservations, FastPass+ selections, and PhotoPass pictures. That’s a lot! With all this data to handle, My Disney Experience mistakes can and do occur for many guests.

Making FastPass+ Selections in My Disney Experience. Using character avatars helps you make sure you're using your Family and Friends' actual accounts.

Making FastPass+ Selections in My Disney Experience. Using character avatars helps you make sure you’re using your Family and Friends’ actual accounts.

Your vacation depends on its smooth operation, so getting your My Disney Experience account details right is an important part of your planning. This means everything from log-in and email notifications, to setting up your Family and Friends. If you’re getting started at home, you have time to play with the website and app, getting used to the interface. If you rush through the set-up, you might make a mistake which costs you time later.

Still, even the most careful planner can get caught by a quirk within My Disney Experience (known as MDX by Cast Members).  Here are some My Disney Experience do’s and don’ts, to help you plan a smooth, fun and maybe even relaxing Walt Disney World vacation.

Don’t: Make a new account because you forgot your password.

When you are prompted to set up your My Disney Experience account, you enter an email. If you’ve ever used that email for any Disney-owned account, from ESPN to Pixie Hollow, MDX is looking for the same password you used for that account. So if you enter in your primary email address on the first day you decide to use My Disney Experience, and are immediately prompted for a password you don’t remember, stop! Take the time to reset the password, even if it means calling in for assistance. Why is this so important?

Well, it’s mostly for your own convenience. If you use a secondary email address, at a certain point you’ll probably forget you were using it. Then, you’ll get important communications from Disney about your reservation, which you’ll miss because you didn’t get them in your primary email account. Disney uses your email for notifications about your reservations. For example: you might get a notification your FastPass+ reservation for The Jungle Cruise has been canceled due to weather, and you now have an additional FastPass+ to use on a specific set of rides in its place. 

There’s also the matter of duplicate accounts. If you create a second MDX account because your forgot a password, then inadvertently use your other email on reservations or to purchase tickets, you might create a duplicate version of yourself… and you really don’t want to do that! We’ll talk more on duplicates in a minute.

When you set up your resort reservation, be sure to enter everyone's names and ages correctly. This will matter when buying tickets and making FastPass+.

When you set up your resort reservation, be sure to enter everyone’s names and ages correctly. This will matter when buying tickets and making FastPass+. If you mark your children as adults to save time, you’ll make it up later when you’re trying to buy children’s tickets for them!

So take time to get your account set-up correctly the first time… right down to your children’s ages, if you have kids. That information will feed into your attempts to purchase many other vacation pieces, including resort reservations and theme park tickets.

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Photo Editing Now Available in My Disney Experience App

by on December 7, 2016

With the recent update of the My Disney Experience app, a new perk has been added for fans of Disney PhotoPass. And trust me, this perk is a long time coming. Guests can now choose to edit their photos in the app. You will now be able to customize purchased PhotoPass photos by being able to crop images, as well as add stickers and frames and save these images instantly.

So, I decided to play with the app and see how the process works.

First, when you open an image, you’ll need to select “Edit.”

My Disney Experience Photo Editing 1

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Walt Disney World Guests Can Now Order Purple MagicBands

by on March 9, 2016

You guys! I’m so excited! I know it’s a silly thing to be thrilled about, but I have been waiting for this day for a while. Purple MagicBands are here!

Purple is by far my favorite color, so I actually even put off ordering my most recent Annual Pass MagicBand when I initially bought my Annual Pass. I had (correctly) suspected that we would soon see the purple MagicBand complimentary option available for Guests the moment Disney released the information that they would start selling purple MagicBands that could be customized in the park. This week, my wait paid off!

I logged into my My Disney Experience Account and there it told me I had a MagicBand waiting for me to order.

Capture 4

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The Basics: A Timeline for Your Disney World Trip

by on March 7, 2016

Castle (6)This is a continuation of our Back to Basics Series. Scroll to the bottom to see our other Basics posts.

My previous article in the TouringPlans blog Back to Basics series focused on using the TouringPlans Crowd Calendar to decide when to go to Disney World. Once you’ve made that all-important decision, it’s time to start planning the details of your trip. Using a timeline is an excellent way to keep your trip planning on track. It’s also a fun way to ratchet up the excitement as you count down the days to your vacation.

This article starts with a chart showing essential milestones in a Disney World planning timeline, followed by an example of a timeline used by a family preparing for their trip. Plus, learn how TouringPlans.com subscribers can receive personalized alerts and use their own Dashboard on TouringPlans.com to ensure they don’t miss the crucial dates in their timeline.

© Sarah Graffam

Use a Disney World Trip Planning Timeline to Keep You on Track for Making FastPass+ Reservations and More

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A Visit to Magic Kingdom’s MagicBands on Demand Retail Location

by on November 4, 2015

On a recent visit to Magic Kingdom, I was thrilled to customize my own MagicBand at the new MagicBands on Demand retail location inside of Tomorrowland Light & Power Co., near the exit to Space Mountain. Not only was I able to get a purple MagicBand (a color hotly anticipated by Disney fans ever since MagicBands debuted) but I was able to complement it with my own choice of graphics. Rikki Niblett wrote about this new location where guests can create MagicBands on Demand when it opened in late October; in addition to MagicBands, it offers customized cell phone cases. Here are the details on my experience creating a MagicBand.

The storefront’s clock-and-gear-shaped Mickey and “Generating a Bright New Tomorrow” sign got me right in the mood to experience some technology.

© Sarah Graffam

Guests are greeted by several banks of touchscreens used to customize MagicBands and phone cases.

© Sarah Graffam

© Sarah Graffam

A sign displays pricing for MagicBands on Demand with or without adding a name as well as for D-Tech on Demand options for customized phone cases with or without a name.

To start designing my MagicBand, I chose to work at one of the touchscreens at the front of the store. I arrived at the store around 9:30 AM, and there were plenty of open touchscreen stations. If all the stations at the front are in use, there are several more touchscreens located in the back of the store near the center where guests’ MagicBands and cases are printed.

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Adventure is Out There! (But I’d Prefer to Plan for It): Results of a Totally Spontaneous Day

by on October 21, 2015

Adventure is out there

How exactly do you unplan a day?

If you follow my articles, you know that over Labor Day Weekend I partook in a grand experiment in an unplanned day at Walt Disney World. Having now experienced that firsthand (and taking some time to mull it over) I’m ready to report back with this uber-planner’s perspective on completely making things up as I went along. What did I learn? Adventure is out there, but I’d prefer to plan for it.

For a quick review of my experiment, here are the rules that were applied to my unplanned day:

  • Votes were submitted via Twitter, Facebook, and the comments section of my All It Takes is Faith and Trust article regarding which park my husband and I would visit on Saturday, September 5th – we did not tally the votes until we were ready to walk out the door and go to the winning park.
  • We had to make our FastPass+ selections after we arrived at the park using one of the in-park kiosks (this was a rule change based upon a suggestion from a commenter on the original article – I was not allowed to use the MyDisneyExperience app on my phone).
  • We could not make a meal reservation for that day until after we arrived in the designated park, and we had to make that reservation by calling the reservation line (another rule change based on comments).
  • I would provide regular updates on Twitter and solicit feedback from people following along from home – they could make suggestions regarding what we would do once we were in the winning park and I would try to accommodate those requests.
  • I would be allowed to utilize the Touring Plans Lines app throughout the day.

If you aren’t interested in the play-by-play version of the day and you just want to know my reaction to it, scroll on down to the “So, What Do I Really Think?” section and enjoy!

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Hollywood Studios Retrospective: Memories of Disney World’s Third Park

by on August 9, 2015

©Disney

©Disney

It’s no surprise that Disney’s Hollywood Studios is set for a major revamp. With the heavily rumored changes coming to Walt Disney World’s third theme park, it could potentially lead to a park that’s almost unrecognizable to what many of us grew up visiting. While I think the changes are long overdue, this article isn’t focused on what may come to Hollywood Studios or whatever its new name will be. Instead, I wanted to take a moment to remember some of the aspects of Hollywood Studios (or MGM Studios as some park goers including myself continue to call it on habit) that probably won’t make it through the renovation.

I’m basing this on the rumors that only Tower of Terror, Rock n’ Roller Coaster, Star Tours, Toy Story Mania! and the Great Movie Ride will remain. While I won’t argue that this article covers the definitive best parts of Hollywood Studio’s twenty plus year history, these are some of the more memorable attractions, landmarks and shows at the park for me personally. Some of these things still exist today. Some only closed recently and some haven’t appeared at the park in years. Regardless, each had an impact on Disney’s Hollywood Studios.

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