by Brittany DiCologero
Think you know everything there is to know about Magic Bands? Whether you’re in the know, in terms of how the technology works, or if you’re looking for some ideas for how to make your band unique, we’ve got eight tips that are sure to help you get the most out of this park accessory:
1) Customize Magic Bands on My Disney Experience
When you stay at a Disney resort, you are able to receive complimentary Magic Bands. Prior to your trip, you will be able to login to your “My Disney Experience” account and customize your bands. On this setting, you will be able to choose the color and name for each band associated with a member of your party.
2) Know that you can opt out of receiving complimentary bands
Back when Magic Bands were brand new, there was no option to opt out of complimentary bands when you stayed at a Disney resort. Annual passholders would often end up with tons of Magic Bands as they would be given new ones for each one of their trips. Or, they would decline the bands upon check in at their resort’s front desk, only to wonder what would happen to them since they already had their names printed on the inside. If you’re concerned about what all these extra bands can do to the environment, or you’ve simply run out of storage space for so many bands, know that you can decline new bands on the same page where you would customize them in your “My Disney Experience” account.
3) Design a Magic Band during your vacation
While vacationing at Walt Disney World, stop by D-Tech located at Disney Springs, or the gift shop adjacent to Space Mountain to design your own Magic Band. You can design your band (or phone case) using a touch screen design studio, and after about a half hour or so you’ll be able to return and pick up your custom band. The design studio allows you to choose colors, logos, certain characters, text, and more, meaning your band will be truly unique.
4) Decorate your Magic Band at home
Many guests (who must have a more creative touch than I do) have been very successful in decorating their Magic Bands at home before leaving for their vacation. I’ve seen bands painted with nail polish, or decorated with glitter or stickers, all making for a nice park accessory unique to individual interests. While I think I’ll stick to my D-Tech designed band, this can be a fun way to spruce up your band if you think you’re up to it.
5) Check out online retailers
A number of online retailers, including websites like Etsy, offer custom painted Magic Bands. Other websites even offer plastic skins you can put over your band that come in more designs than the ones you’ll see in the park. If you’re not able to decorate a band yourself, but want something more special than what you’d find in the parks, this might be a great option for you. Another great reason to purchase bands from places like Etsy is that you’d also be supporting a small business!
6) Look out for sliders and band-its
Sliders and band-its are sold all around the Walt Disney World resorts as pieces that can add a bit of fun to your Magic Band. There are so many great character variations and designs offered, that I’ve vowed to make my Magic Band more meaningful rather than buying all of the sliders I see. Unfortunately some of these pieces tend to come in three backs, although this can work well if each member of the family only wants one slider.
7) Understand everything your Magic Band does
Your Magic Band does more than simply get you into the parks. You can charge purchases to your resort bill using your band, as well as use them for Fastpasses, PhotoPass, Extra Magic Hours, and more. You can read up on all the features of your band on Disney’s official website, which also has information about how the RFID technology works. In addition, the box your bands come in if you receive them ahead of time should have some similar information. To take full advantage of your band, you’ll definitely want to be aware of everything it does!
8) Link up to your family members on My Disney Experience
Now that you know how and what your bands are used for, it’s very important to make sure that you are linked up with other members of your party on “My Disney Experience.” This is especially important when making Fastpasses, as on occasion guests will forget or not know that they need to link multiple accounts, until someone scans a Magic Band to use a Fastpass but the cast members lets them know that they have no passes selected. A quick peek into your friends and family list, and your Fastpass reservations will let you know if everyone is linked, and of course you can ask any cast member for help once you’re in the parks as well.