This is the Newbie Guide to Disneyland MagicBand, technically dubbed MagicBand+. Because you know, everything lovely in the world needs a “plus” added to it these days. Updated March 2023.
I am totally embracing this newbie guide because I too, am a newbie to Disneyland MagicBand. When the announcement was made at the D23 Destination event in late 2021, I literally said to myself, “Stop making Disneyland into Walt Disney World! Just leave us alone!”
Then my daughter brought me back to reality when she asked, “Wait we’re getting MagicBands? Score!” Her excitement made me sit and think for a moment about how I could approach this new tech and feature at Disneyland Resort.
We’ve been bombarded with changes lately and not just changes like a fun new ride or show, but complete adjustments to how we visit the parks. It’s a total learning curve. And it’s a lot to ask a family who visits Disneyland maybe once a year to learn completely new things that will likely be irrelevant the next time they visit.
Changes for guests prompt questions like:
- Wait I need tickets and theme park reservations required to enter?
- Is this ride using a stand-by line, virtual queue or maybe both during my visit?
- What happened to FASTPASS and what it Disney Genie?
and of course, “What is a MagicBand and why do I care?”
I’m right here with you. Breaking it down. Helping you decide what’s most important to learn and adapt to during your Disneyland Vacation, including the all-new-to-Disneyland MagicBand+.
Disneyland MagicBand+ Basics
MagicBands help families and guests do ONE major thing we’ve all been complaining about since Disney MaxPass days—UNPLUG! If nothing else, your Disneyland MagicBand can help loosen reliance on your cell phone. BUT it will need to be linked to your Disneyland App account and paired to a smartphone device.
There are still be plenty of reasons to keep your cell phone charged and close by, but this has been a huge complaint for many guests looking to connect with their families during vacation but instead end up connecting more with the WiFi.
What does a Disneyland MagicBand do?
Your Disneyland MagicBand+ has the tech to help keep things hands-free:
- tap into the park instead of pulling out your phone or ticket
- tap into your Disneyland Resort hotel guest room instead of fishing around your bag for a room key (coming soon, not with initial launch)
- make retail purchases with just a tap (coming soon, not with initial launch)
- pay for dining with a tap of the MagicBand (coming soon, not with initial launch)
- connect your memories with Disney PhotoPass pictures
Disney Parks Blog also shared,
MagicBand+ also adds new, immersive elements and surprises to park experiences. In sync with special moments during select nighttime spectaculars, your band will complement the magic in the skies by pulsing with colorful, dancing lights and vibrations.
MagicBand+ will come to life during “World of Color” in Disney California Adventure park and “Fantasmic!” and select nighttime shows in Disneyland park.
You’ll also be able to explore Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge in Disneyland park like never before with the Star Wars: Batuu Bounty Hunters interactive quest. Vibrations and lights from your MagicBand+ will help guide you to find virtual bounties across Black Spire Outpost. When you find your bounty, you can use the augmented reality thermal viewer in the Play Disney Parks app** to reveal who’s hiding in the shadows. Once your mission is successfully completed, local guild master Raga Bua will reward you with galactic credits.
And this is only the beginning. Think Apple Watch, Disney style. Intrigued? So am I. Let’s keep going!
How much do MagicBands cost?
Prices vary from $20 and up. Take a look here.
Can I use my Walt Disney World MagicBand at Disneyland?
Prior generations of MagicBand will not be compatible at Disneyland Resort. You will need to have the most up to date MagicBand+ in order for it to be active at Disneyland Resort.
How often do I need to charge my MagicBand?
You need to charge your MagicBand each night to ensure a full charge for your Disneyland day ahead.
Does everyone in my group need a MagicBand+?
No, but it’s certainly fun and convenient to use. Just like Disney Genie+, not everyone in your group needs it but you might want to!
Can MagicBands be tied to multiple tickets?
No, each MagicBand will work with one active ticket per trip. They cannot be tied to multiple tickets.
How to Use Disneyland MagicBand+
Tap and go, it’s that simple. When MagicBand+ is paired to a smartphone device through the Disneyland app, it unlocks the features above and more to come.
More Details Disneyland MagicBand+
Because we’re all learning together, leave your Disneyland MagicBand+ comments below and I’ll also use those as I gather more information for you.
8 thoughts on “Newbie Guide to Disneyland MagicBand”
Does everyone have to have a magic band in order to have the tickets for everyone stored on there? Or can it all be on one magic band?
Hi Jess, one MagicBand per ticket only. Hope that helps!
Two adults and an (almost) 11 yo. We had magic bands when we did DisneyWorld in 2019. It was great to not have to worry about park tickets, purchasing, fastpasses and room key. We’re coming during the week in May, no Genie+, and it’s likely there will not be any parades, fireworks, etc. the nights we’re there. With the current limitations for use in Disneyland, is it really worth it for even one magic band?
Hi there! In your situation I’d say don’t bother. Not worth it, especially without using Genie+ which is pretty much the main thing we use them for here. I hope you have an amazing trip… and good news! There will be Magic Happens parade daily and the new night show at both parks each night (fireworks will be added only on weekends). See this article on all the Disney100 entertainment.
Thanks for keeping up to date on this. My question is: what are the drawbacks of NOT buying a Magic Band? At $20 per person, the price of attending Disneyland becomes even more expensive. Is it worth the money?
That is a great question! I will be exploring that along with if it’ll be helpful to have one or two for the parents (or kids) and not for everyone. Super interested in all the ins and outs.
Jessica, I have a magic band I Purchased to use at Disney World. I know you said you were going to answer that particular question, just wondering when you might have that answer
Hi Roxanne, I just received word from my PR contact at Disneyland Resort. Prior generations of MagicBand will not be compatible at Disneyland Resort.