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Disney’s MagicMobile vs. MagicBands: Here’s What To Know

Walt Disney World is always continuing to improve the theme park experience by making it easier to enjoy the parks and offer new and exciting ways to have fun. Their newest creation is the addition of the MagicMobile service that allows smart phone users to download a pass to their phone’s wallet to use similarly to a MagicBand.  With this new service though, there are some things that you need to know before heading to the parks!

 

1. Customizable

One of the most fun benefits of having a MagicBand is the ability to customize it your day in the parks — Disney sells a variety of specialty MagicBands so fans can show off their fandom with different characters or customize their MagicBand in their favorite color or even with their name.  MagicMobile carries over this customizable design option to the passes — when you set up the MagicMobile pass through the My Disney Experience apps, guests will be given the choice of selecting from a variety of Disney designs from classic Mickey ear hats to various park designs and even your favorite treats!  It is hard to imagine that these designs won’t constantly be changing to give guests the choice to celebrate and show off their Disney side!

Credit: Disney

2. Park Ticket

Similar to the MagicBand, the MagicMobile pass does function as a ticket and will allow guests entrance into the parks at any of the park touchpoints — MagicMobile utilizes near field communication (NFC) so guests will only have to put their phone near the touchpoint for it to read your ticket information before granting you access to the fun!  Pulling out your cell phone can be a lot easier than having to deal with a sweaty piece of plastic on your wrist, especially in those HOT summer months.  Parents of young children don’t need to worry — you can still have your child’s pass on your phone to make it easier to navigate into the parks!

3. PhotoPass Photos

The MagicMobile pass can also act like a MagicBand in being a link point to PhotoPass photos throughout the parks.  Similar to pairing your in-park and on-ride photos to your MagicBand, guests will simply need to put their pass near the reader to make sure that your memento is properly saved to your My Disney Experience account. 

Disney's Photopass

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4. Room Key

MagicBands also act as your room key if you’re staying at one of the on-property resorts.  Currently, the MagicMobile pass does not open your resort room door, but guests can gain access to their room through the My Disney Experience app — with the MagicMobile pass just being introduced, we can’t imagine it will be too much longer before guests are able to use this for room access, too!  Having the ability to gain access to your room without a MagicBand is amazing (this writer has had the misfortune of his door closing behind him before he realizes that he forgot to grab a MagicBand for the day!)

Room Key

5. Charging Privileges

MagicBands can be set up to allow members of your party to have charging privileges to your resort account.  Simply wave your MagicBand, enter your code, and go about your day of souvenir shopping or sampling the tastes and flavors of World Showcase.  MagicMobile does not yet have this feature either, but it should only be a matter of time before this functionality is unveiled.

MagicBands

Guests should take the time to set up their MagicMobile passes before heading to the parks — it might be easier for one family member to create and download them and then share them with family members who have a smartphone.  If the technology sounds a little too intimidating, don’t worry — guests can still continue to use MagicBands from previous Disney trips or from shopping around the resort, but remember that at the beginning of 2021, Disney World was no longer including free MagicBands for guests staying in their resorts, so if you choose to use MagicBands — be sure to pack them in your bag or plan on purchasing one when you arrive at your resort.

Are you excited about this new technological addition to your Disney trips?  Will you be downloading your pass before your next trip?

About Tyler

Tyler is a lawyer living in South Florida who visits Disney World at least once a month. He enjoys re-living classic Disney experiences and discovering new things about the parks when he visits. Friends and family always ask him to plan their trip for maximum Disney magic!