Up until now, the common understanding of Walt Disney World Annual Passholders (APs) and Disneyland Magic Key Holders was that they could access the Theme Parks on any day they weren’t blacked out. As The Walt Disney Company continues to hold fast to the Theme Park Reservation System, the perceived level of these year-long passes’ Park access is significantly diminished.
The best example can be seen at the Disneyland Paris Resort. Its Infinity Pass holds no blackout dates, or, as a Cast Member clarified, there are no dates restricting one’s ability to register for a Park visit during the year. But, according to the Theme Park Reservation’s availability calendar, every single weekend left in 2022 was unavailable, and about half of November and December were already gone as well. So, if I bought that Annual Pass today, I would technically have scores of already blacked-out dates right out of the gate.
There is no all-at-once starting point for APs at any Disney Resort, so the same situation can be found for renewing APs at American Theme Parks as well. It makes sense, then, for Disney Parks to turn its Annual Passes into 18-month passes and allow its most loyal Guests the opportunity to visit the Theme Parks at all times of the year.
An 18-month Pass would then allow me to at least have a second or better chance to secure Theme Park Reservations for specific times that I would otherwise miss. If Christmas 2022 was already booked up, then at least I can have a legitimate chance at next Christmas without having to pay for it all over again.
I know that it is nowhere near close to what Annual Passholders used to have. In the days of first-come-first-served, Annual Passholders were second only to Resort Hotel Guests when the Theme Parks started hitting capacity. Now, we appear to be the first to get denied. But, perhaps the extension could at least truly reopen the full extent of the year to Annual Passholders again.
Disclaimer: The opinions expressed in this article are the writer’s and may not reflect the sentiments of Disney Fanatic as a whole.