Late last year, Walt Disney announced the introduction of MagicBand 2 – the next generation of their game-changing MagicBands. Packages including these new bands are now being sent to resort guests, so those headed to Walt Disney World may be wondering what has changed, and what has stayed the same. Here’s what you need to know about MagicBand 2.
What You Need to Know About MagicBand 2
MagicBand 2, as you can see from the photo above, is similar to the original MagicBand. However, the center part of the MagicBand 2 is a bit larger – it looks more like a watch than the original band. Despite the added size, it actually doesn’t feel that much different on my small wrist.
As of now, the functionality of the MagicBand 2 is the same as the original MagicBand. It can be used to gain access to the Magical Express, open your Disney resort room door, take Memory Maker photos, gain access to the parks, and utilize the FastPass+ system. With the MagicBand, you no longer need a room key/Key to the World card.
The primary difference of the MagicBand 2 is the center Mickey – called the icon. The icon in the MagicBand 2 is removable, and can be used in accessories that are sold in the parks. But don’t worry about the icon falling out – it will require a screwdriver to remove, and can’t easily be pushed out.
Getting a MagicBand 2
If you are a resort guest at Walt Disney World, you’ll receive a MagicBand for each member of your family at no cost. It’s a good idea to go into My Disney Experience and customize the band – you can add a name and choose from a selection of colors. Otherwise you’ll receive a gray band. US residents will get the bands in the mail, while international guests can pick them up at their resort.
If you aren’t staying at a Walt Disney World resort hotel, you can purchase a MagicBand 2 in the Disney parks gift shops. There are also some available online – I’d expect more to be added in the future. In addition, MagicBands from previous trips can be used as long as the battery is still working.
The Disney Parks Blog has stated that special accessories for the MagicBand 2 will be available in the parks. Called Magic Keepers, these accessories will offer alternative ways to wear the icon in the band. They aren’t currently available online, but we’ll link to them when they are.
You can also decorate your MagicBand 2. If you are especially crafty, you can do this on your own, or you can buy decals from some creative sellers on Etsy.
If you are going to Walt Disney World, I recommend the following hotels. Note that I have stayed in some of these resorts as part of press trips, but all opinions are my own.
- Disney’s Beach Club
- Disney Swan and Dolphin
- Disney’s Art of Animation
- Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge
- Gaylord Palms
- JW Marriott Orlando Grande Lakes
- World Center Marriott
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