Teens on attractions
  • On Feb 19, 2023
    Elisabeth from OH Asked Please note that experiences, policies, pricing and other offerings are subject to change and may have changed since the date of this answer.

    My family (2 adults, 1 teen) are hoping to make a Disney trip in about a year--we're looking at the less-busy times of Jan/Feb. So which add-ons will give us the best value (Genie+, Hopper, Bands, etc.) for that time of year?

    Hi Elisabeth,

    Thank you for visiting planDisney with your question. Your family makeup is the same as mine! My spouse and I travel to Walt Disney World with our teenage daughter often. Experiencing Walt Disney World with teenagers is wonderful. They can truly participate in the planning and offer their unique views on all of the magic. I am happy to help you think about how you might want to structure this trip with your teenager.

    Just like families traveling with young children, all families traveling with teenagers are different. I am going to offer some thoughts, but you definitely need to consider these in the context of your family. For instance, do you prefer to have lots of down time at your resort? I know our daughter loves time at our resort pool. If so, be sure to plan that in!

    In terms of Disney Genie+ Service, I find that this can be very helpful in terms of maximizing the number of attractions my family can see on a given day. For example, we recently visited Disney's Hollywood Studios with some friends who do not travel often to the theme parks. They wanted to be sure to maximize their time and see everything that they could squeeze into a day. By utilizing Disney Genie+, as well as purchasing Individual Lightening Lanes, we were able to experience every attraction that they wanted to in that day. One suggestion I have is to choose which days you purchase Disney Genie+ Service for. If you are spending a few days in the theme parks, it is possible that you will not need it every day. A great feature about Disney Genie+ Service is that you can purchase it for some days but not others. You can choose the day that you want to experience the most attractions as your Disney Genie+ day. Then, on other days, you can do without Disney Genie+ Service, and rather focus on the ambiance, perhaps lingering over a table service meal in a theme park, and so on.

    My advice on Disney's Park Hopper Option is very much the same as my advice on Disney's Genie+ Service. Take a look at your vacation and consider if you will need to head from one park to another on any given day of your vacation. If you are staying for enough days that you will be able to go to each park that you want to experience for a day, you may be able to forgo this option. I will note that unlike Disney's Genie+ Service, which you can purchase day-by-day, the Park Hopper Option does need to be purchased for the length of your tickets. My family often finds that once we head to one theme park for a day, that is enough for us. We then like to take in our resort hotel that evening, or possibly head to Disney's BoardWalk or Disney Springs. Neither of these locations require theme park admission, and they both offer great dining, shopping, and entertainment!

    In terms of MagicBands and MagicBand+, again, consider what your family enjoys. You do not need a MagicBand or MagicBand+ to enjoy Walt Disney World, so these are absolutely optional. My family has MagicBands. The additional features with MagicBand+ do look amazing, including being able to interact with the environment in many unique ways. However, as a family we find that those might not be things that we will take advantage of, so we chose to use simply our MagicBands.

    I would love to help you plan more, Elisabeth; however, I am limited in the amount of space I have to answer. Please do feel free to write back with any further Disney planning questions!

    ~ Mona Leigh 
thumbnail image for Mona Leigh

Meet the Panelist: Mona Leigh, Maryland

I am a wife and mother who works in children's technology design and research. When I'm not at work or with my family, I'm often planning a Walt Disney World trip for my family or friends. I'm a Disney Vacation Club Member, and am excited to help you plan your Disney vacation!  Learn More About Mona Leigh

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