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One of my absolute favorite parts of the 50th Anniversary Celebration at Walt Disney World is the arrival of the Fab50 Golden Statues. These character likenesses can be found throughout the theme parks. My family loved looking for them. I don't want to take the fun out of your hunt, so I won't tell you where in the parks you'll find these, but I will tell you what park is home to each character.
The Disney Park Pass system was implemented after the pandemic closures to track guest capacity. To visit one of the Disney theme parks, all guests must have a valid ticket and make a reservation for the park they'd like to visit. There has been some confusion about this new policy, so I want to clarify how the system works. Below, I discuss how the system works and answer some of your most common questions about it.
How the Disney Park Reservation system works
Park Reservations, also called the Disney Park Passes, can be accessed through My Disney Experience. After purchasing your park tickets, you can make a Park Reservation using the prompts under the “My Plans” section. You’ll need to select the members of your party, the date you want to visit, and the park you want to go to. If a reservation is available, you’ll be prompted to confirm it. If no reservations are available that day, you’ll be notified and prompted to choose a different park. You need to make a park reservation for every day you wish to visit the theme parks, even if you have a multi-day park ticket.
What you need to make a Park Reservation
The most important thing you need to make a park reservation is valid admission. If you don’t have tickets linked for everyone in your party, you won't be able to make a reservation. No worries if you don't know what parks you'd like to visit each day. When you book with Just Add Magic Travel®, I use my experience and expertise to recommend the best itinerary for your family that fits your needs and works with current availability. If you haven't purchased your theme park tickets yet, check the park availability calendar to ensure your vacation dates are available before buying tickets.
Common questions about the Park Reservation system
Here are some of the most common questions I get about the park reservation system. Have more questions? Feel free to contact me. I’ll make these reservations for your Disney vacation, so you don’t need to stress about it!
How long will the Park Pass system be in place?
The Park Pass system was put in place after the park closures of 2020 to help manage crowds and park capacity. Initially, the reservation system was set to expire in September 2021. However, it was extended until January 14, 2022, then again until January 2024. All this to say, the park reservation system will be here for quite a while.
When should I make my park reservations?
Once your package is booked, or your tickets are purchased, you should log into your My Disney Experience account and secure your park reservations. Availability can change frequently. Certain dates do "sell out" in advance, so this is one step of the planning process that you shouldn't put off. Tickets may be unavailable on dates with no reservations, which can happen during peak times like spring break and the holidays. Reservations may open up from time to time, so you can always check back at a later date.
My park tickets are valid on a particular day. Is that the same thing as making a reservation?
No. Purchasing a valid park ticket on a particular day is not the same as making a theme park reservation. You must purchase park tickets and make a separate theme park reservation.
How far in advance can I make a park reservation?
Park reservations are available from now until January 2024.
How do I show proof of my reservation to enter the park?
Your theme park reservation is automatically linked to your tickets. Once you get to the park, all you have to do is show your physical or electronic ticket or magic band to enter the park.
How do I park hop?
To park hop, you’ll need a valid Park Hopper® admission ticket. Make a reservation for the first park you’d like to visit that day. Once you enter that park, check My Disney Experience for park hopping availability times, which typically start around 2 pm each day. Once the park hopping window opens for that day, you can freely visit any park that has open park hopping hours. You don’t need to make a reservation at the second park.
Disney travel planning with Just Add Magic Travel®
There's no reason to be confused about the Disney Park Reservation System! Let Just Add Magic Travel take care of purchasing your park tickets and make your theme park reservations for you! My agency is an Authorized Disney Vacation Planner, so I know the ins and outs of navigating the park reservation system. Get a free quote to get started!
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Photo by Brian McGowan on Unsplash
Is traveling on your to-do list for 2022? Many new and exciting experiences are happening at Disney destinations and beyond in 2022. Now is a great time to experience the magic and wonder of a Disney or Universal vacation. Here are my top five reasons to get excited about travel in 2022!
1. Walt Disney World's 50th Anniversary celebration
WDW's 50th Anniversary celebration technically began on October 1st of last year, but the party remains throughout 2022! This celebration is the longest of any Disney destination and will last until the beginning of 2023, so there's plenty of time to experience it all. The park icons are dressed up for the occasion, transforming into Beacons of Magic at night. Cinderella Castle illuminates with blue and purple projections and pixie dust. Spaceship Earth's reflective panels burst with stardust at Epcot. The Tree of Life at Animal Kingdom swirls to life with droves of enchanted fireflies. There are even shimmering touches on the Tower of Terror at Disney's Hollywood Studios. Mickey and Minnie appear throughout the parks in "EAR"idescent attire, and there is plenty of themed merchandise to take home. Don't forget to spot the Fab 50 golden character statues scattered throughout the four theme parks!
Several new attractions and shows premiered as part of the celebration, including HarmonioUS, a nighttime spectacular at Epcot and Disney Enchantment, the new firework show at Magic Kingdom. Remy's Ratatouille Adventure opened in October at the France Pavilion, and Guardians of the Galaxy: Cosmic Rewind (one of the world's longest indoor coasters) will open this summer at Epcot.
2. Disney Resort openings and reopenings
Disney Resorts are making a comeback in 2022! Here's what's new this year:
Star Wars™: Galactic Starcruiser
The highly anticipated Star Wars-themed hotel will launch in March. The resort offers two-day, two-night galactic "voyages" through the galaxy aboard the starcruiser Halcyon and includes an excursion to the planet Batuu. The best part? You get to be a part of your own Star Wars story! The all-inclusive resort includes meals, lodging, and one-day park admission to Disney's Hollywood Studios. Availability is extremely limited for this resort experience. Get a quote for your trip to a galaxy far, far away today!
Disney’s All-Star Sports Resort
You may be wondering why mentioning this value resort's reopening, which is set for March 31st, is such a big deal. In addition to the rooms being completely renovated, it will mark the first time since the pandemic closures of 2020 that all Disney Resorts will be operational. That's definitely something to cheer about!
There have been many updates to rooms around the Walt Disney World property to incorporate scenes and characters from some of the most popular Disney movies of all time, allowing you to stay with your favorite characters. These updates include Incredibles-themed rooms at Disney's Contemporary Resort and Moana-themed rooms at Disney's Polynesian Village Resort. There have also been updates to rooms throughout the All-Star resorts.
Now's a great time to visit Walt Disney World and see these new rooms in person. A new Disney Resort deal was just released, allowing guests to save up to $100 per night at select Disney Resorts on most stays between March 6th and July 7th, 2022.
3. New cruises and deals
This year, two new cruise ships will set their sights on the open seas! This summer, the Disney Wish will set sail with Minnie Mouse as the captain. Disney Wish will also feature a Frozen-themed dinner show, Avengers character dining, the "AquaMouse," (a 760-foot water coaster that surrounds the ship), and other immersive and interactive experiences.
Thinking about taking a Disney cruise this year? Now is your chance to book! Disney Cruise Line is currently offering 50% off your initial deposit for most cruises between June 18th, 2022 and May 31st, 2023 (excluding Disney Wish sailings through September 30th, 2022). This deal won't last long, though: book your cruise by March 11th to take advantage of this promotion. Contact me to get started!
The newest Royal Caribbean ship, the Wonder of the Seas℠, will start sailing in March. It is the world's largest cruise ship and will feature eight neighborhoods, an underwater play area, and a redesigned pool deck.
4. Entertainment returns
One of the things we're most excited about in 2022 is the return of live entertainment to many Disney Parks! At Magic Kingdom, the daily Festival of Fantasy parade will return, along with new character cavalcades featuring friends from Coco, Moana, and Zootopia. A newly imagined show on the Castle Forefront Stage will also appear in 2022. At Hollywood Studios, the fan-favorite Fantasmic! will finally return, with some brand-new special effects and sequences. In addition, the Indiana Jones Stunt Show reopened last month. The show has been a part of the Hollywood Studios family for 30 years, so it's great to see it back in action! The Finding Nemo show that previously ran at the Theater in the Wild at Animal Kingdom will be revamped and include scenes and songs based on Finding Dory.
5. Universal Mardi Gras
Universal Mardi Gras is back and better than ever in 2022. The festival runs from February 5th through April 24th, which is an excellent time to visit Universal. The event features food and drink kiosks with Cajun-inspired dishes, a full-scale Mardi Gras parade, and a concert series featuring some of the nation's top-performing musicians like Sugar Ray, Gavin DeGraw, Khalid, and Seal.
Travel to Disney destinations with Just Add Magic Travel®!
There is so much to look forward to in 2022, and I'd love to help you check "travel" off your to-do list. I offer concierge-level travel planning services to Disney destinations and beyond. I'm Aileen, the owner of Just Add Magic Travel. As the owner of an Authorized Disney Vacation Planner agency and an Authorized Universal Travel Professional, I help families plan stress-free vacations. All you have to do is add magic! Get a free quote for your next vacation, or learn more about me by visiting my website.
I look forward to helping you create a magical vacation!
Owner of Just Add Magic Travel