Guide to Disney’s Extra Magic Hours
Disney does a lot of special things for guests who stay on property. One of my favorites are their extra magic hours. These are hours where you are only allowed in the park if you are staying on property. They allow you to either enter the park early or stay later than all other guests.
How do Extra Magic Hours Work?
The park will either open early or stay open later during Extra Magic Hours only for guests staying in a Disney Hotel or Resort. If the hours are prior to opening, you have to scan your MagicBand and it alerts the Disney team if you are staying on property. You then get to go into the park and knock out rides before anyone else is allowed in. If the hours are after normal closing, the Disney team will begin scanning your MagicBand when you get in line for a ride. They are checking to make sure that only guests staying on property are taking advantage of the extra hours. For more information on how your MagicBand works, you can visit Magic Band blog.
How to Find Extra Magic Hours
Extra Magic Hours are displayed on the Walt Disney World website. Under “Parks & Tickets”, you can find the hours for each park that day or click “More Hours” to find the hours for days up to 6 months in advance.
How to Use Extra Magic Hours
There are two ways I use Extra Magic Hours to get the most of our vacations:
- Save Your Fast Passes
- Extra Magic Hours automatically reduces the number of people in the park and, thus, the lines. If you have extra hours in the park, you might be able to forgo a fast pass for a ride during the day and take advantage of the shorter lines at night. There are some rides that never have short lines and you will always need a fast pass : Seven Dwarves Mine Train, Toy Story Mania, Frozen Fever. Save your fast passes for these rides, and let Extra Magic Hours reduce the lines for the less-popular rides.
- Plan Your Trip
- If you are trying to decide which park to visit on a particular day, pick one with Extra Magic Hours over another park. While we enjoy all parks, Magic Kingdom is still our favorite. I also know my group are late-risers so I focus on extra hours at night. We have no problem staying up until 2 or 3am, but the 8am entrance never seems to happen. When I plan my trip, late-night Extra Magic Hours at Magic Kingdom are an automatic schedule for us.
For other tips in planning your trip to Disney, check out my other posts!