MagicBands have become a Walt Disney World park staple for several years and many of us can’t see visiting a park without one. But these days, with so many changes in the Disney Parks, MagicBand questions are plentiful. To help keep you in the loop about them, here are the 20 most asked Disney MagicBand questions and answers to help you plan your next trip.
They’ve been in the Walt Disney World parks since 2013. While that’s almost 8 years, I remember when annual passholders could test drive one in Epcot. I, personally, love the convenience, style, colors, and patterns.
And with constant park changes, Disney MagicBand questions are constantly popping up for me. To help you plan, here are the answers to the top ones.
What Is a MagicBand?
In a nutshell, it’s are a highly useful way to navigate the Walt Disney World (WDW) parks and resorts. With several built in functions, once linked to your My Disney Experience account, you’re able to:
- pay for dining
- make purchases at WDW shops
- enter the parks with a linked park ticket or pass
- charge purchases at your Disney Resort
- access Fastpass+ selections
- Link PhotoPass photos
Are MagicBands Being Discontinued?
Yes and no. For 2021, WDW is no longer offering complimentary ones to resort guests. Personally, I really enjoyed this Disney World freebie and loved collecting one in every color.
Instead, it’s offering MagicMobile. Similar in concept, it allows guests to open their resort door and connect PhotoPass. So, while you can technically use MagicMobile and My Disney Experience to do the things that they can do, they’re still being offered as a paid service.
So, when it comes to needing one to tour the theme parks, the answer is no, you don’t have to have one. But, they are super convenient.
Are MagicBands Being Replaced?
Again, yes and no. MagicMobile and My Disney Experience can be used instead, but they’re still available to purchase.
How Do Disney MagicBands Work?
In the middle it (called a puck) is an RFID chip. That chip, along with a teeny battery, uses a low frequency when activated with a touch point.
Touch points are found all over the parks and resorts. You’ll see them at entrance turnstiles, when paying for food at WDW restaurants, and at check-in at lobby desks. Handheld versions are carried around by some castmembers as well.
How Long Do MagicBands Last?
Two years, at least. Having written that, I’ve had some since they were released in 2013 and they still work beautifully.
Are Disney MagicBands Worth It?
In my opinion, 100% yes. I find the convenience and capabilities gives me less worry when I’m at WDW.
But, unless you’re a collector like I am, there’s no need to go overboard on an expensive version when you can simply use an RFID-enable park ticket.
Should I Get a MagicBand if I’m Not Staying on Property?
I’ve stayed off property at plenty of resorts and hotels around WDW and I use mine on every trip. At this point I’m so used to having one on my wrist I feel naked without it.
How Much Are 2021 MagicBands?
Prices vary from $5 on up to $50+.
How Do You Get a $5 MagicBand?
Instead of free ones for WDW Resort guests, you can pay for a basic colored version for $5.
Can You Buy MagicBands at Disney World?
Yes. While WDW is really pushing MagicMobile, they can be found at just about every shop on property.
Can You Buy MagicBands at Disney Springs?
Yep! The stores that offer the most variety are World of Disney, Disney Marketplace Co-Op, and Pin Traders.
Can You Buy MagicBands at the Disney Store?
I’ve never seen them there. Instead, you can purchase online at ShopDisney. If you’re in the Orlando/Lake Buena Vista area, you can many times find inexpensive ones at Disney Character Warehouse.
Why Doesn’t Disneyland Use MagicBands?
Good question. California privacy laws prohibit the use of tracking so it looks like they won’t be there anytime soon.
Do MagicBands Work at Universal Studios?
They do not work at Universal Orlando Resort. Sorry.
Can MagicBands Be Reused By Someone Else?
Nope. Quite frankly, if you try to use someone else’s and get caught, you can be banned from the parks.
Having written that, if you purchase one and don’t activate it by linking it to your account, you can give to someone else to use and link.
Do You Have to Activate MagicBands?
You don’t, actually. I have one that’s sitting in my room unactivated and still in the box. Of course, I’ll be unable to use it in the WDW theme parks and resorts but it’s fine to purchase and not activate.
Can You Swim with MagicBands?
Absolutely. If you want to wear it 24/7 while you’re on vacation, feel free to swim and shower with it on.
Do You Need a MagicBand to Use Genie+?
You don’t need a one to use Genie+. You will, however, need to get a park ticket card with an RFID chip in it.
What Are the MagicBand Colors?
The colors and styles are varied right now as new styles seem to come out almost weekly. But, the basic colors (the $5 WDW Resort colors) are Dark Purple, Raspberry, Mint Green, Light Navy, Blue Irish, Blush Pink, Black, Soft Yellow, Olive Green, White, & Light Pink.
When choosing one for your resort stay, click on complimentary and there is the basic gray style for free.
Are There Limited Edition MagicBands for Sale in 2021?
Having just been to WDW in March 2021, I can write yes. I purchased a Dooney and Bourke Haunted Mansion style in Memento Mori at Magic Kingdom.
Of course, you’ll be paying a premium price for the premium style.