By the co-author of The easy Guide to Your Walt Disney World Visit 2020, the best-reviewed Disney World guidebook series ever.

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Fastpass+ Not Until 2014?

By Dave Shute


Beginnings of MyMagic+Fastpass+ is a new, not-yet-released Disney World program that will allow…and perhaps require…Fastpasses to be reserved well in advance of a visit.

(Len Testa has a great write-up of what’s known (not a lot) and what can be reasonably speculated about Fastpass+ here.)

I predicted back in early April that the earliest date we’d see this consequentially operational in the parks would be October 1, and nothing in Disney’s early May earnings call led me to revise this date to earlier.

I thought a telling exchange on this call was the following (bold added by me)

Analyst: “…in terms of [the Fastpass+] timeframe, would that be something where by fiscal 2014 you would think we start to see some impact?”

Bob Iger, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, The Walt Disney Company: “Yes. I think–well, I definitely believe we’ll see some impact in fiscal 2014. That is certainly our plan…”

Disney’s fiscal 2014 starts in October 2013. This waffling is sensible—you don’t want to announce a date before you are confident in it, and Disney can’t be confident in Fastpass+ until a number of systems issues are resolved, and lots of further testing happens.

Now Jay Rasulo—who was also on that call, and is Disney’s CFO—was at the Nomura Annual U.S. Media and Telecom Summit last week, and of course got a similar question.

Here’s what Jay had to say about the timing of MyMagic+, the overall program of which the major element will be Fastpass+:

“…MyMagic+… will probably launch before the end of this year in its, I don’t know, I won’t say totality, but largely be launched by the end of this year and fiscal year.”

So my take-away?  October 1 is still the earliest date I’m seeing for the widespread in-park use of Fastpass+, but if I had to bet, based on just the passage of time and the comparative words used between these two early and late May sessions, I’d look for an even longer timeframe

I’d now guess for a formal widespread opening of Fastpass+ for reservations sometime between late September and early November, with the first pretty full use of the program in the parks beginning no earlier than January 4 or 5, 2014—after all the holiday crowds are gone.

This is just a forecast—it could be earlier, especially if the launch in the parks explicitly excludes Thanksgiving week and the weeks of Christmas and New Year’s or even later.

But that’s my bet now—no widespread use of Fastpass+ in the parks until 2014.

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1 Bill McDaniel { 06.06.13 at 8:27 am }

Sir, I will be visiting from 24 Oct till 2 Nov. I understand most of the concepts of this program (mymagic+) but not sure what wide-spread use means vs full use. What do you think the impact will be on my vacation? Love your site and use it every trip to plan our family vacations to DW. Thanks! Bill

2 Dave { 06.07.13 at 7:30 am }

Hi Bill, and thanks for the kind words about the site. I don’t mean anything different between the two phrases. And right now there’s no implication for you, becasue nothing is announced. When Disney does announce this program, I expect at least 60 days notice, and will publish extensively then!

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3 Joe Ramsey { 06.07.13 at 3:48 pm }

Dave – Can you venture a guess as to how long the existing system will be running side by side with FP+? Also, I posted a question in Jan. about the 2014 crowd calendar as it relates to Spring Break crowds. You kindly replied you would know more by Late June. Do you still believe that to be the case?
Thanks as always for your great website, very helpful!!

4 Dave { 06.09.13 at 7:36 am }

Oh Joe, I dunno–I can’t even guess, there’s too mnay unkonms.

Having both run together will be in theory the best for everyone, but there’s not enuf capacity in the E-Ticket rides–like Space Mountain or Test Track–for this to work well. Regular FP for these will run out really fast, so it will sound better than it operates…

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5 Mike { 06.07.13 at 6:19 pm }

We’ll be there 2nd week of Nov. I’m hoping we will luck out and get simultaneous FP+ and old FP. That would really be great. Do you think they will keep the old FP system for the first several months after rolling out FP+ to all guests? Even if not, I think FP+ will really be great for those lucky enough to be able to take advantages of child swap passes as well. Fingers crossed.

6 Dave { 06.09.13 at 7:37 am }

Hey Mike! See the response I just posted above to Joe…

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7 Jessica { 07.09.13 at 4:43 pm }

I am new to this site and first let me say I love it. Great details and outlay. We are visiting the parks Dec 14-Dec 22 and this whole Fastpass+ thing has me in a frenzy. I guess my main concern is do you think it will be in use and do you think I will need / have the option to precook Fastpasses or book the day before or use the old system? I know I am probably confusing someone cause I am confusing myself. I feel stuck on my plans cause I just don’t know what to expect.

8 Dave { 07.10.13 at 8:54 am }

Hiya Jessica and thanks!

I think two things: 1. Fastpass+ won’t be fully up and running then, but 2. if it is, you’ll have 60 days notice! So settle down and just keep coming back here now and then. If it’s on, I’ll be talking about it!!

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9 Dennis { 07.11.13 at 2:05 pm }

I was looking at My Reservations ( for December) yesterday and in a new section under the dining reservations showed fastpass +. It was gone later in the day and I was unable to bring anything up from that section.

10 Dave { 07.12.13 at 8:36 am }

Interesting, Dennis! Thanks for the heads up…

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11 Jessica { 07.14.13 at 1:36 am }

Same thing happen to me today when I was checking my MyDisney Experince site. But when I clicked on mine it said if your eligible you will be getting an email soon. But then it disappeared.

12 Jessica { 07.14.13 at 1:37 am }

It always said in the explanation of it that MyMagic, magic bands and Fastpass+ would be rolling out later this year. I guess we will see.

13 Dave { 07.14.13 at 8:10 am }

Hi Jessica–well not “always,” as back in 2012 the word on from Disney was that Fastpass+ was that it would be out in “early” 2013…

14 Jessica { 07.14.13 at 2:14 pm }

I meant also. Not always. Lol. Sorry.

15 Dave { 07.15.13 at 8:07 am }

Oh, sorry!!!

16 Scott { 07.16.13 at 8:59 pm }

Have you tried to set up information under the My Disney Experience on the Disney website? I am not sure they could make this any more complicated. Trying to link family and friends is a bit confusing, especially when a family member is a minor. The instructions to link MagicBands and Cards is so confusing. Perhaps at some point this will become easier to understand.

17 Dave { 07.17.13 at 7:47 am }

OMG, Scott…the amount of usability refinement “My Disney Experience” needs is terrifying…especially to me, as I’m gonna have to start writing “how-tos” for it!

18 Tom { 07.17.13 at 11:02 am }

Do you know that I was just toying the other night with a reservation for 2014 and when I selected age of kids I put the appropriate age of my children as of July 2014; however at the final stages of the reservation, when I had to link members to my party, the Disney website did not allow me to link them since ages did not match with those they had. Therefore I had to put the ages my children currently have for a 2014 reservation. Both are over 3, so they pay entrance ticket as minors, but it was weird anyway

19 Dave { 07.18.13 at 7:50 am }

How goofy!

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