Changes to FastPass+ System at Walt Disney World
Tom Staggs, Chairman of Walt Disney Parks and Resorts, announced the next phase of the MyMagic+ program. Guests staying off-property will soon be able to take advantage of the My Disney Experience app, and all guests will be able to reserve more than three FastPass+ selections.
Here’s the important thing about this announcement: it shouldn’t come as a shock to anyone. If Disney is known for anything, it’s for listening to its guests and giving them – us! – exactly what we want in a dream vacation. They’re also known for innovation, especially when it comes to family vacation experiences. Before Disney, there was no such thing as a theme park – and at the time, there were quite a few outspoken people who thought the whole thing was a horrible idea that would forever destroy life as they knew it.
I don’t know about you, but I’m pretty glad they were right – I don’t want to imagine a world without theme parks, especially Disneyland and the parks at Walt Disney World!
There’s been a lot of negativity online surrounding MyMagic+, especially the new FastPass+ system. Most of what I’ve seen boils down to one basic complaint: “This doesn’t work exactly like the old system.”
Well….yeah. That’s kinda the point. It’s different. But that’s not necessarily a bad thing.
- No more Black-Friday-at-Walmart-style mad dash for FastPasses. Remember when FastPasses for Soarin’ were gone by 10am, and if you weren’t at the parks by Rope Drop you could pretty much forget about getting any of the “good” rides? That doesn’t bring out the best in anyone, and I for one am glad it’s gone the way of sleazy roadside carnivals.
- Changing plans isn’t wasteful. Under the old paper system, once a FastPass was handed out, it was gone. If you got one of those limited numbers of FastPasses for a hot ride, but by lunchtime the kids were exhausted and ready to go back to the resort pool, you had a choice to make: either make them tough it out until your FastPass time (when everybody’s going to be cranky), or waste it and prevent someone else from enjoying the ride. Sure, you could hand your FastPass to someone in the park, and a lot of people did that, but it’s still a clunky process. Now, if Plan A isn’t working out, you can change it and your original FastPasses go back into the pool for someone else to claim.
- No more paper to lose. Personally, I hate when someone hands me a note on a slip of paper, because I know how likely I am to lose it. No matter how diligent I am about putting it in my pocket or my purse, it’s going to vanish on me. But if I put that information in my phone, it’s there forever. Keeping our FastPass+ selections stored digitally in My Disney Experience and our MagicBands is so much easier and less stressful than trying to keep track of 6 paper FastPasses for every ride we’ve reserved. That’s a lot of paper to lose.
Sure, there have been glitches. There are things we’d all like to see improved upon. And those improvements are happening – Disney listens to its guests. So the next time you see a rant about how the new FastPass+ system is the end of the world as we know it, do me a favor and remind everybody chill out. It’s going to be ok.
Let’s share some memories – what are some of your favorite moments where Disney made a big change and everybody swore the sky was falling…and now you can’t imagine a Disney parks vacation without it?