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Ask The Disney Experts Discuss fast pass testing in the Ask The Experts forums; Hello experts, I am wondering what all of you think about the new fast pass system. For my family, 3 fast passes are not enough, even though some people think ...
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    thedisneydad is offline A-Ticket holder
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    fast pass testing

    Hello experts,

    I am wondering what all of you think about the new fast pass system. For my family, 3 fast passes are not enough, even though some people think 3 is plenty.

    After the testing is over, do you think 3 fast passes will remain, or do you think other things will be implemented. Some of the logical things I read was that 3 fast passes will be given to Value Resort Guests - 5 for Moderate Resorts and 7 for Deluxe Resort guests, DVC members and Florida residents with annual passes.

    Another thing I heard is that all Resort guests will get front of the line passes, while off site guests have to pay, just like Universal.

    All of these kinda make sense, but of course rumors never pan out. To me it makes sense that something has to change, being the new fast pass system does not allow fast passes at different parks. With that being the case, I would guess that Park Hopper ticket purchases will definitely decline as a result.

    Do the experts feel that more is to come after the testing phase is complete or is it likely that what we see is what we will get?

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    doconeill's Avatar
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    Re: fast pass testing

    Offsite resort guests are going to get access to Fastpass+ as well, as it is included with admission (this was stated early on). In fact, tomorrow at AK starts a full-blown test - NO regular Fastpass, Fastpass+ only.

    There is no capacity to offer everyone at least three, and then increase that for higher tiers of guests.

    Everything points to 3, and that's it. Occasionally, if the capacity vs. crowds allow it, you might get an extra.

    Whether offsite guests will get to book in advance remains to be seen. Disney has in various ways implied it, but for tomorrows test they'll be doing it at kiosks only.

    What we're starting to notice is that onsite guests get to pick FPs starting at 60 days from check-in - through the length of their reservation. So even if offsite guests get 60 days, onsite guests will get a "+" benefit similar to with ADRs.

    In the long run, if they see FP+ being underutilized, they might offer more, either opportunistically, as a "bonus" for certain things, or just a flat one or two extra. It remains to be seen how this pans out. Knowing that there were guests out there that just "didn't get" Fastpass, I can't imagine how this will be simpler for them.
    Doc

    Website work in progress: WDW Untangled: Fastpass+ - Rider Switch - ADR Calculator - Magic Your Way Ticket Price Calculator
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    Re: fast pass testing

    I don't like the limit. With regular FP, I can get a lot more during the day then 3. Also, it limits park hopping (which you can also do with regular FP)
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    thedisneydad is offline A-Ticket holder
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    Re: fast pass testing

    Quote Originally Posted by joanna71985 View Post
    I don't like the limit. With regular FP, I can get a lot more during the day then 3. Also, it limits park hopping (which you can also do with regular FP)




    I agree 100%. We go to Disney at Peak Season every year, which is during spring break. We get to the park at 8am leave at 1 or 2am. Throughout the day, I am able to get at least 6 or 7 fast passes.

    Being that my family and I get to go on all the rides, plus enjoy the other things Disney has to offer, we are happy and come back every year for more. Now, I am kinda worried about this next trip in a couple months. I cant be the only parent here, who refuses to wait over an hour to get on a ride, which lasts less then a minute or so.

    It just seems to me that if nothing changes, Limiting Fast Passes will make the overwhelming majority of parents unhappy. And Unhappy parents don't spend money, so how was this system calculated as a win for Disney. 1 Billion put into it, the vast majority unhappy with it. I dont understand.

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    HauntedGabe's Avatar
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    Re: fast pass testing

    Quote Originally Posted by joanna71985 View Post
    I don't like the limit. With regular FP, I can get a lot more during the day then 3. Also, it limits park hopping (which you can also do with regular FP)
    You can get FP+'s?
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    thedisneydad is offline A-Ticket holder
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    Re: fast pass testing

    Quote Originally Posted by HauntedGabe View Post
    You can get FP+'s?

    FP+ gives you the ability to only get 3 per day at just one park. So you would not be able to get 1 fast pass for space mountain in Magic Kingdom, then use the other two fast passes somewhere else to park hop. The limit just seems odd.

    Some of the rationale behind this new system suggested that Disney may feel that the average person does not use the paper fast pass too often. However, if that was the case, then why put over 1 Billion into this system. If they felt the average person did not utilize the fast pass, then there shouldn't have been a problem that needed to be fixed then.

    I know there is one heck of a lot more that goes into the new Magic Band System, other than Fast Passes, but the passes are what impacts the guests more than anything else.

    For instance, they feel that the Magic Bands will get you into the park faster, This is 100% False. Even though people have the Magic Band, they still have to stop at the Security Check Point to check bags, purses and strollers. If you think back to your last trip to Disney with the regular ticket, you will remember that you spent a lot more time in line at the check point, rather then getting into the park at the turnstile. Also, even though you have the Magic Bands, you still have to walk up to the machine and place the band against the machine for it to read. This takes 3 seconds, which is the same amount of time that it took the regular ticket to go through the machine. In addition, people still need to get there finger scanned, so therefore, it is truly not saving any time at all.

    Now I know people will say that the bands will help people move quicker and that they would not have to search their pockets and purses for tickets, but seriously, how many seconds does that take. Was that truly worth Disney spending over 1 Billion on.

    Also, Disney claims that the advantage to these bands are that the guest can put money on bands, so therefore the purchases will be quicker. Lets think about that for a second. Does that benefit Disney, or the guest more? Then they say your dining credits, reservations and room key entrance will be linked to the bands. But again, whether or not you are flashing a ticket, or a band strapped to your wrist, The time consumed and the trade off does not equal over 1 billion dollars in value. As a result of this new system, our future ticket prices will go up to pay for this, our fast passes will be limited and a person who is going on vacation in February 2014, needs to now go on line and put down 3 times they want to ride each ride. Is it just me, or is spontaneity one of the main reasons people go on vacations. I am not liking the thought of knowing that on my next trip, I better not sleep in, or that I better not get stuck in traffic on the way to the park, because if so, I will lose my fast pass ticket.

    Now they do say you can change your reservation quickly and easily, but with cell reception, it is not as easily done as they may think. I have an Iphone and my wife, an Android. On the buses, internet service is in an out, losing signal. It is not as easy as they think to log in and change a reservation. Plus, being that you may even need to make changes, doesn't that just add way too much work to a system that should have been created to create less work for their guests.

    One friend of mine told me that she had a fast pass for Buzz, but then when they got there, the line was only 15 minutes long. They tried to wait in line and change their fast pass, but the time frame to do so expired. So in the end, they lost one fast pass. For the remainder of her trip, she told me that she got to her fast pass rides about 10 minutes before she was due to, just encase this situation happens again. Therefore if the standby line was within 20 minutes, she had the option to change the pass and wait in line instead. That was okay some of the time, but a few times, with so many people on Disney's WI-FI system, she got booted and again lost passes because changes could not be made in time. Now think about this entire process, is it just me, or does it seem like a lot of added work? In the past, we get up when we want, go to the park when we want. Then slide a ticket in a machine and out comes a fast pass. At the end of the day, you were able to get a lot more than 3 fast passes and it all just felt way more easier then what this will be.

    I know this all is a rant, but I guess I am entitled to rant, since I have spent 5000 a year (last 12-years) to vacation to Disney and my next two trips are already set in stone and cannot be changed.

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    doconeill's Avatar
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    Re: fast pass testing

    Interesting feedback on the Fastpass+ stuff...I was under the impression that you could STILL change an expired Fastpass+ selection for a later time/different attraction, subject to availability, in the same day/park.

    Fastpass+ is definitely no benefit to the "power" guest. It could, however, be an advantage to the general masses. And it has the potential to actually make standby lines faster, contrary to initial logic. I don't know if I've posted it around here before, but I have an explanation as to why saved somewhere if interested. Adding the tiering throws a bit of a wrench in to it, but that's only happened at two parks so far.

    As for the money Disney spent - it isn't all for FP+. It's for everything - the whole "MyMagic+" system, which affects the resorts, parks, shops, web site, etc. The ultimate stated goal is to have less people dwelling in the parks trying to decide what to do next, but rather have them know what they are doing and therefore have more time to spend more money, and make it easier for them to spend more money.

    Unfortunately, it seems they didn't spend enough, or didn't at least didn't spend it with the right contractors. And making people depend on the wi-fi service that had little chance of working perfectly to be able to utilize the system even just to know what their current FP+ return times was just plain foolish.

    As for getting in to the parks faster...I've seen it work well. No, it doesn't do anything about the bag check. But I've several times been able to tap in with my AP very easily. The problem is I know how to do it well, as does my family. But few are used to it yet. It's faster if you do the finger and band/card at the same time...you don't need to wait for the ticket to register. It appears, from my observations of others, that the RFID seems to have fewer overall misreads than the old system. And they can get four people through simultaneously per setup where before they could only do two (approximately).

    Not sure what you mean by "putting money" on the bands. What they ARE supposed to offer is a "tap to pay" feature similar to that of charging to the room, which can currently be done if you have a MagicBand and staying on site, but for anyone with a MagicBand. The way I understand it is that you give a credit/debit card like you do when you check in to your resort, but you don't need a room to do it. Instead, the charges go to a separate folio, and that folio gets charged directly to the card. The feature doesn't exist yet and it might not be implemented, but it fits in the "make it easier to spend more money" philosophy. It would also make sense if they used that system to attach gift card values, and eliminate all the plastic.

    At least part of the cost is expected to be recouped by the expected 10-20% extra revenue per guest they estimate, although exactly how they will get that is a mystery. That _might_ be just from the easier spending, or they also expect to get more people to stay onsite instead of off due to interest in it or future unstated onsite perks, etc.
    Doc

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    Re: fast pass testing

    The putting money on your band will be for the AP holders, mainly aimed at the locals or those AP holders that stay off sight. The band will have the option of being pre loaded with funds. It will work like a pre-paid debit card. Disney already has a vendor in place. Guests choosing to do so will need to set up an account. This won't come into play until 2014 when AP holders receive their Magic Bands. I have not seen a date other than 2014.
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    doconeill's Avatar
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    Re: fast pass testing

    Interestingly, which may or may not be related, Disney has set up a "savings account" system that went live this week:

    http://www.disneyvacationaccount.com/

    Calling it a "savings account" isn't really right - they are not acting as a bank, but more of an intermediate account with some perks. You pay into the account, and can get all the money "refunded" if necessary, but back into the original payment sources.

    But I could see something like this getting linked in...
    Doc

    Website work in progress: WDW Untangled: Fastpass+ - Rider Switch - ADR Calculator - Magic Your Way Ticket Price Calculator
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    thedisneydad is offline A-Ticket holder
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    Re: fast pass testing

    A Rumor circulating all over the web is that according to some Disney Podcast, Starting in February, guests at select resorts will be given a 4th fast pass once they check into the resort. The fast pass that is given, will be for a ride, show or parade, that has the lowest number picked, from the guests that day. The Cast Member at the resort will supposedly tell the people that this is the first of many "Magical Moments" and that the 4th fast pass can be changed if they want.

    Someone countered that rumor claiming that they heard the same podcast and that extra fast passes will be given out to only the people who purchased park hoppers.

    Another person, who claimed to have a very good source said that by the summer, Disney will be charging for fast passes. Everyone will be allowed 3, however, the guests staying in a moderate or above resorts, will be able to pay for more. For example; the person said that the option to buy will only be given, after a person selects Park hoppers on the options of buying tickets. He said it will be a charge between 9.99 - 14.99 per day, per person, for every day of the length of the ticket bought and that the option is for only 3 extra fast passes PD. So if a family of 4 buys a 10 day park hopper, at the most, they can get 6 fast passes per day if they spend an extra 600 dollars. (which is at the 14.99 cost).

    I am only reposting these rumors because I was hoping that maybe Lou or some of his Kronies on here can comment and say whether or not it is possible or if they may have heard these rumblings as well. On the one forum, some person pasted a link to a Permit/Patent website that Disney applied for which was for selling fast passes 4 years ago.

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    doconeill's Avatar
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    Re: fast pass testing

    There has been rumors about resort guests getting more Fastpasses for many years...

    As for getting a "bonus" Fastpass+ for the least-used FP+ attraction? I totally believe it. It's like the old Bonus Fastpass that occasionally got spit out by the FP kiosk - it was for an attraction you didn't really need it for, and it was a way to get guests to go to an underutilized attraction. Changing them of course is subject to availability of another choice...

    The resort guests being allowed to purchase more is a new one to me...
    Doc

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    Re: fast pass testing

    Quote Originally Posted by doconeill View Post
    Interestingly, which may or may not be related, Disney has set up a "savings account" system that went live this week:

    http://www.disneyvacationaccount.com/

    Calling it a "savings account" isn't really right - they are not acting as a bank, but more of an intermediate account with some perks. You pay into the account, and can get all the money "refunded" if necessary, but back into the original payment sources.

    But I could see something like this getting linked in...
    How would this work if you use a travel agency? I don't know, let's say someone like MEI-Mousefan Travel (shameless plug). Could you deposit into the Disney Vacation Account and then transfer it to an agency or allow the Agency to have access to the account?
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    thedisneydad is offline A-Ticket holder
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    Re: fast pass testing

    Apparently in March, Disney will be charging Off Site guests the Magic Bands for 15 dollars per person. Paying 15 bucks will allow them to make fast pass reservations in advance rather then the day of their trip.

    This is terrible if you ask me. I go to Disney every year and stay in the resorts. Now in March, Which is the time of my next trip, Off site guests will get the same vacation plan as I do with spending not nearly as much as I do? Either Disney will start to give more perks to their resort guests, or they will be driving them away.

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    Re: fast pass testing

    I agree! That's not cool at all.



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    doconeill's Avatar
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    Re: fast pass testing

    It was reported a long time ago that they would give non-resort guests the option of purchasing a MagicBand...first I've heard of a price though, and it kind of flies in the face of the rumored $50 replacement cost for a lost one.

    As for the fairness of it...under the old system, the offsite guests had the exact same amount of access that an onsite guest did. Right now they don't even have close to it. This allows them to spend money to get back on equal footing...yet some won't do it. So you should be happier that they are charging for it, rather than allow it for free like it used to be.

    Seems to me that the resort guests will still have an advantage. Just not the same one they've had for the last couple months.
    Doc

    Website work in progress: WDW Untangled: Fastpass+ - Rider Switch - ADR Calculator - Magic Your Way Ticket Price Calculator
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