• On Nov 3, 2020
    Jenna from CA Asked Please note that experiences, policies, pricing and other offerings are subject to change and may have changed since the date of this answer.

    Hi! My family have reservations for two days at WDW in late December. We are staying off property. Is it necessary to purchase Magic Bands, or are smartphones sufficient?

    Welcome to planDisney, Jenna! I'm so excited to hear that you have a trip planned to Walt Disney World Resort this coming December. The week between Christmas and the New Year is a very exciting time to be at The Most Magical Place On Earth, so make sure to use some of your time to enjoy all of the holiday festivities that will be going on!

    If you're not staying at a Walt Disney World Resort Hotel and you'd rather not purchase MagicBands, that's perfectly fine. You can use your smartphone and the My Disney Experience app to manage your admission, order food using mobile ordering, access your Disney PhotoPass photos. A MagicBand is not a necessity in the Theme Parks but they are available for purchase at most merchandise locations if you decide that you want one. They can be reused on your subsequent trips, so if you come back and decide to stay on-property, you'll be able to use it to open your Resort Hotel room door and make charges to your stored credit card. Aside from a few attraction photos, like Haunted Mansion and Seven Dwarfs Mine Train, there aren't any experiences that require a MagicBand so feel free to make the best decision for yourself and your family next month!

    I hope this answers your question, Jenna, and please let us know if there's anything else we can do to help you plan your magical vacation.

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Meet the Panelist: Jessica, Texas

I'm a personal stylist and I live in Texas with my husband and our three rescue animals. We are Disney Parks-obsessed and love enjoying all the magic that's out there especially for grown-ups. In fact, we even opted out of a tropical honeymoon to spend a blissful week at Walt Disney World Resort instead! I'm thrilled to be on the planDisney Panel and I'm excited to share everything I've learned from all of our trips and help you plan a memorable family vacation.  Learn More About Jessica

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