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Thread: Disneyland expands Fastpass, debuts MaxPass

  1. #1
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    Disneyland expands Fastpass, debuts MaxPass

    Just published on MousePlanet:

    Almost two decades after Disney debuted the Fastpass program, the service is about to undergo a two-phase transformation at the Disneyland Resort. The first phase is the welcome addition of two additional rides to the Fastpass system Toy Story Mania in Disney California Adventure and the Matterhorn Bobsleds in Disneyland.

    With this change, the list of Fastpass attractions at each park is as follows, though some are only offered seasonally:

    Disneyland

    Big Thunder Mountain Railroad
    Buzz Lightyear Astro Blasters
    Haunted Mansion [Holiday]
    Indiana Jones Adventure
    Matterhorn Bobsleds
    Roger Rabbit's Car Toon Spin
    [Hyper] Space Mountain [Ghost Galaxy]
    Splash Mountain
    Star Tours The Adventures Continue

    Disney California Adventure

    California Screamin'
    Goofy's Sky School
    Grizzly River Run
    Radiator Springs Racers
    Soarin' Around the World
    Toy Story Mania
    The second phase launches later this year, and has the potential to change the way you use the Fastpass system. The new program is called Disney's MaxPass, and it bundles the existing PhotoPass product with a still-in-development digital Fastpass tool in the Disneyland mobile app.

    MaxPass includes unlimited downloads of PhotoPass photos taken each day the entitlement is valid. It also allows visitors to collect and redeem FastPass tickets using the app, instead of collecting paper FastPass tickets.

    Visitors can add Disney's MaxPass to their theme park tickets for $10 per ticket, per day. Users can choose to purchase the MaxPass for their entire length of stay, or for one or more days. Annual passholders will also be able to purchase MaxPass by the day, or add it to their pass for the year, though pricing has not yet been finalized.

    The standard Fastpass system will still be available at no charge to visitors who do not purchase the MaxPass product.

    While this is a change for Disneyland's Fastpass system, this is not the west coast implementation of Fastpass+ as some rumors have suggested, nor should you expect to be outfitted with a Magic Band anytime soon. Fastpass may be getting a shiny new digital interface, but the nuts and bolts of the program remain the same.

    Unlike the Fastpass+ system at Walt Disney World, the MaxPass system does not allow users to select Fastpasses months, weeks or even days in advance. This is still a same-day program, and users must activate the entitlement on the day they visit the park.

    Nor can users make Fastpass selections from home before even heading to the parks. Visitors must be inside a theme park to collect a digital Fastpass to use the same day, though MaxPass users need not walk to their selected attraction to claim a Fastpass ticket. A MaxPass user can walk onto Main Street, U.S.A. and claim a Fastpass for Splash Mountain if they want, without ever stepping foot in Critter Country. The MaxPass app also allows users to claim a Fastpass for a ride in the other theme park, so a user in Disneyland could claim a Fastpass for Radiator Springs Racers before park hopping.

    Regardless of how they obtain their Fastpass, users are still subject to the same policies. Tickets are issued on a first-come, first-serve basis. Users can generally not obtain another Fastpass until two hours after they obtain the first Fastpass, or at the end of the return window of the first Fastpass, whichever comes first.

    When it comes time to ride, MaxPass users will likely scan a barcode displayed from the screen of their app at a new portal installed at the Fastpass return gate. Paper Fastpass ticket holders will scan the barcode on their ticket to access the return queue. Disney has been testing these portals at various times for well over a year, and recent building permits issued indicate that installation is ready to proceed.

    There are still so many details we don't know about MaxPass, and Disney acknowledges the product is still under development. We don't know if entertainment Fastpass like World of Color or Fantasmic can be collected using the app. We don't know if parents can claim and redeem Fastpass tickets for their children using one mobile device, or if one member of a party can manage Fastpass tickets for the entire party. We don't know if the app will allow you to cancel a previously-collected Fastpass if you change your mind, possibly freeing you up to collect another Fastpass more quickly.

    The $10 per ticket, per day price point for day guests is intriguing, if only because that is $29 less than the cost of the Disney PhotoPass+ One Day product currently offered. Setting aside for the moment any discussion of the Fastpass element, it's cheaper to add MaxPass onto one member of the party just to receive the PhotoPass benefit.

    As for the Fastpass benefit, it's really hard to say right now if that alone is worth the added cost. Signature and Premier passholders who already receive PhotoPass downloads as part of the price of their annual pass will especially want to look at the final pricing for passholders, and decide of the Fastpass benefit alone is worth the add-on cost.

    MousePlanet will continue to follow this new product as Disney provides more details about the MaxPass.


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  3. #2
    Fun is wherever you find it... olegc's Avatar
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    so I assume that if you use the digital option - that everyone in your party has to have a smartphone - even your 6 year old - in order to get a fastpass for that attraction. Whereas with paper tickets one person can get in line and get fastpasses for the group. I would like to know if there will be an option to scan tickets to the app so you can get Fastpasses for the entire group.

    "[Disneyland] has that thing - the imagination, and the feeling of happy excitement - I knew when I was a kid." - Walt Disney

  4. #3

    Interesting.

    This seems to imply (I understand details are still being worked) the current FP dynamic of people running like the bulls at rope drop for FP for the hot attractions will evolve into everyone rushing to get into the "zone" inside a park boundary and then ... stopping to look down at their phone to grab a FP instead.

    I can't see how that could possibly be a crowd congestion problem.

    Thanks for the write up! It is good news that they are adding FP to TSMM, IMO.

    Last edited by Dave1313; 01-11-2017 at 08:52 AM.
    -Dave

  5. #4
    Quote Originally Posted by olegc View Post
    so I assume that if you use the digital option - that everyone in your party has to have a smartphone - even your 6 year old - in order to get a fastpass for that attraction. Whereas with paper tickets one person can get in line and get fastpasses for the group. I would like to know if there will be an option to scan tickets to the app so you can get Fastpasses for the entire group.
    Even if it's not exactly like the FL implementation (no magic bands, no advance sign up), perhaps they will import the "friends and family" ability to link admission media to one "My Disney Experience" account (or alternate name if they change it for DL) for this.

    The surcharge would likely apply for each ticket, but this would seem a logical implementation.
    -Dave

  6. #5
    Fun is wherever you find it... olegc's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dave1313 View Post
    Even if it's not exactly like the FL implementation (no magic bands, no advance sign up), perhaps they will import the "friends and family" ability to link admission media to one "My Disney Experience" account (or alternate name if they change it for DL) for this.

    The surcharge would likely apply for each ticket, but this would seem a logical implementation.
    I agree. Let's see what happens.

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  7. #6
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    I would hope this would also WiFi enable both parks -- currently, because I have an ipod touch, I have to bring my hotspot with me to go online at Disneyland and DCA.

    Hakuna Matata
    Parent of a Princess, Disney Cruise Line Community Leader, DL College Program Alum (PM me for info) , and former Disney Store Plush Princess
    There's nothing like listening to "Feed the Birds" while sitting on the steps of St. Paul's.

  8. #7
    Quote Originally Posted by Dave1313 View Post
    Even if it's not exactly like the FL implementation (no magic bands, no advance sign up), perhaps they will import the "friends and family" ability to link admission media to one "My Disney Experience" account (or alternate name if they change it for DL) for this.

    The surcharge would likely apply for each ticket, but this would seem a logical implementation.
    An answer was given on the blog that said you would pay the fee for each ticket but be able to manage all with one phone.

    I like AVPs idea of using the Max Pass on one ticket as a cheaper alternative to photopass. I would like to have that ability on my AP without having to buy one of the most expensive APs. Now to see how much they're going to charge to add the service to your AP.

  9. #8
    Quote Originally Posted by Niwel View Post
    I would hope this would also WiFi enable both parks -- currently, because I have an ipod touch, I have to bring my hotspot with me to go online at Disneyland and DCA.
    It would be nice if they'd use some of the money they'll make from charging for the service to expand their WiFi

  10. #9
    Fun is wherever you find it... olegc's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bumblebeeonarose View Post
    It would be nice if they'd use some of the money they'll make from charging for the service to expand their WiFi
    Won't happen unless there is large customer demand for better service. That won't happen until a crowded number of days where cell service is marginal. We all have been asking for wifi for years and it has not been added (in the parks). I doubt we'll see it soon I hope they surprise me.

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  11. #10

    Maybe the $10 will give you the password to the park's wifi for the day? That alone could be worth the upcharge.


  12. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by olegc View Post
    Won't happen unless there is large customer demand for better service. That won't happen until a crowded number of days where cell service is marginal. We all have been asking for wifi for years and it has not been added (in the parks). I doubt we'll see it soon I hope they surprise me.
    But previously there wasn't a need for it -- at WDW, they want you to use the app, so they made sure the parks had wifi -- although on our last trip I learned which parts had it and which didn't. With the new MaxPass, they might put it in. Or, to currence's point, maybe the 10 gets you the wifi password.
    Hakuna Matata
    Parent of a Princess, Disney Cruise Line Community Leader, DL College Program Alum (PM me for info) , and former Disney Store Plush Princess
    There's nothing like listening to "Feed the Birds" while sitting on the steps of St. Paul's.

  13. #12
    Quote Originally Posted by currence View Post
    Maybe the $10 will give you the password to the park's wifi for the day? That alone could be worth the upcharge.
    On the surface that seems like a good plan, since part of the problem with free WiFi @ DLR is supposedly being in the middle of Anaheim.

    It would be interesting to see, but fraudulent passing on of the password would still likely be an issue (even for legitimate park visitors, just maybe those who don't buy the MaxPass).
    -Dave

  14. #13
    Fun is wherever you find it... olegc's Avatar
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    I don't think they have a public wifi in place and I would doubt they would give guests access to the company WiFi's that transfer codes, scans, etc.

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    "[Disneyland] has that thing - the imagination, and the feeling of happy excitement - I knew when I was a kid." - Walt Disney

  15. #14
    Romance @ Disney Goddess
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    Quote Originally Posted by olegc View Post
    I don't think they have a public wifi in place and I would doubt they would give guests access to the company WiFi's that transfer codes, scans, etc.
    IF WDW can do it for Disney_guest -- Disneyland should be able to.... and when you are outside certain boundries, you just wouldn't have access. Heck - if Starbucks can do it. They could also spit out a code that would only be valid for the one device (unless you purchased more) -- like GoGo inflight does.
    Hakuna Matata
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    There's nothing like listening to "Feed the Birds" while sitting on the steps of St. Paul's.

  16. #15
    Fun is wherever you find it... olegc's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Niwel View Post
    IF WDW can do it for Disney_guest -- Disneyland should be able to.... and when you are outside certain boundries, you just wouldn't have access. Heck - if Starbucks can do it. They could also spit out a code that would only be valid for the one device (unless you purchased more) -- like GoGo inflight does.
    I know they can - but as I said earlier there has been guest demand so far and no action. Maybe now, as many have said, it will happen. You'd think, though, that it would be part of the announcement, no?

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    Quote Originally Posted by olegc View Post
    I know they can - but as I said earlier there has been guest demand so far and no action. Maybe now, as many have said, it will happen. You'd think, though, that it would be part of the announcement, no?
    They didn't answer the "where do APs fall in all this" question -- I think holding back some things give them a chance to have another big announcement: wifi coming to Disneyland!
    Hakuna Matata
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  18. #17
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    It seems the only good out of the option is the photopass right now. I know I won't pay to use it. I can walk over to get a FP with our tickets for free instead of paying $30-40 bucks. I can find better use of that much money for other things in the park. I am not sure if this was said in the above or not, so forgive me if I missed it, but how are they going to spread the amount of FPs out? Will it be so many for paper and so many for the digital per hour (50/50, 40/60) or added in more FP users because of the digital? Lots of questions still left out there on this all.

    A crowded day at Disneyland beats a busy day of housework!!

    According to my princess, its not Star Wars land its "You stole my goats away from me!!......in progress land"

  19. #18
    Quote Originally Posted by Berry Princess View Post
    It seems the only good out of the option is the photopass right now. I know I won't pay to use it. I can walk over to get a FP with our tickets for free instead of paying $30-40 bucks. I can find better use of that much money for other things in the park. I am not sure if this was said in the above or not, so forgive me if I missed it, but how are they going to spread the amount of FPs out? Will it be so many for paper and so many for the digital per hour (50/50, 40/60) or added in more FP users because of the digital? Lots of questions still left out there on this all.
    Logically, (just thinking through it), if the FP machines are hooked into the same system that the app will be hooked into (which is a necessity, unless they modify some other aspect of queues/lines), it should just work as it does now, with the only difference being people no longer need to physically visit the machine. The time issued for return should just push out as the FPs are depleted, same as now. Issuing more FP would not seem to be an option (at least not while keeping wait times similar to the way it is now).

    That was sort of the root of my comment regarding people rushing into a park to immediately stop in their tracks to look at their phone and block traffic while trying to grab a FP. If 1500 people grab a RSR FP without ever getting past Buena Vista Street, the people walking to the actual machine would seem to be stuck getting later times (at best) or left out of getting a FP (at worst).

    Maybe I am wrong, and they would actually meter it half (or some split as you suggest) each way for given time blocks to be more fair. Time will tell. Since it's a service they are trying to sell though, it seems unlikely that they would risk someone walking to the machine 15 minutes after park opening getting a time better than someone who grabs a time with the app 5 minutes after being in the park(which could happen if they split it and many people embrace the app). Maybe that split will be determined after this comes on-line and they gauge how many people are actually willing to pay to use it.
    -Dave

  20. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dave1313 View Post
    That was sort of the root of my comment regarding people rushing into a park to immediately stop in their tracks to look at their phone and block traffic while trying to grab a FP. If 1500 people grab a RSR FP without ever getting past Buena Vista Street, the people walking to the actual machine would seem to be stuck getting later times (at best) or left out of getting a FP (at worst).

    Maybe I am wrong, and they would actually meter it half (or some split as you suggest) each way for given time blocks to be more fair. Time will tell. Since it's a service they are trying to sell though, it seems unlikely that they would risk someone walking to the machine 15 minutes after park opening getting a time better than someone who grabs a time with the app 5 minutes after being in the park(which could happen if they split it and many people embrace the app). Maybe that split will be determined after this comes on-line and they gauge how many people are actually willing to pay to use it.
    This is what I was wondering, if they would wait to see how many end up using it and do a split or split it right off the bat or play with it as time goes on. I can imagine there is a way they can adjust it to work this way some how. Which maybe that is one of the things still in the works before its up. I would hope that it would be fair still for all since not everyone will want to pay for what they can walk over and get for free. Plus if they are letting those over in DL grab a FP for something like RSR that is even more than it normally would be with those just walking up to it. I guess all we can do is hope it will be done in some manner so its fair for all no matter which option they decide to go with for getting a FP.
    A crowded day at Disneyland beats a busy day of housework!!

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  21. #20

    Can't tell you the number of times I've tried to gift fastpasses to people on my way outta the park only to be treated like a scourge trying to infect the person with plague or like a nuisance trying to sell something door to door. The resounding lesson in the experiences is the surprisingly vast majority of park visitors are unaware of a fastpass's function, much less its existence. It got to the point I'd gift those passes only to people standing in or approaching a fastpass queue - that way I'd assuredly not have to explain the concept in its entirety.

    Thus, my assessmnet of MaxPass is that it will ultimately have a target demographic consisting of day visitors, many of whom aren't inclined to do basic research ahead of time to learn of fastpass's existence anyway. Granted, DLand may upsell a few of them at the box office same day of admission, but how proficient will they possibly be attempting to navigate a new park and a new app and a system of reserving ride tickets all on the fly? Not very.

    As for Dland vets and annual passholders, most will pass on the opportunity to fork over additional $10 per person per day if the old fashioned kiosk tickets are available, along with there being no incentive to purchase since MaxPass doesn't allow reservations in advance. I was in Orlando when Fastpass+ was rolled out and I loved it, but wouldn't have bothered if they'd ask me to pay extra for it. Along comes MaxPass with fewer bells and whistles and less appeal than Fastpass+, and for a fee ??? No thanks.

    Your attention, please. The Disneyland Limited now leaving for a grand circle tour of the Magic Kingdom. Aboaaard!

  22. #21
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    MidwayManiac, we have had that happen too. I was shocked by couple that gave me this look like I was a monster or something trying to give these 2 extra FPs we had to them. We have turned offers down on them a few times over the years because we were leaving to go home but we would always say thanks but we are going home. We actually ran into a group that had no idea FP was free. They had just gone to Universal the day before and the lady told me she thought you had to pay for it. I explained it to her and she was so happy it was free and wish she had known sooner in the day. They were talking about the HMH so I told her go grab FP for it they still have them and then you can go ride something else as you wait and explained when she can get a new one and all that stuff that goes with it. Now imagine a person like that going up to the ticket booth and being told about the $10 digital option but not being told they are also free as well. I have to wonder how that will work. Will the CM tell those that decline the digital option fee FP about how they can still get them for free in the parks by the ride?

    A crowded day at Disneyland beats a busy day of housework!!

    According to my princess, its not Star Wars land its "You stole my goats away from me!!......in progress land"

  23. #22

    OK maybe I don't know a lot about wifi and lte but why do we need wifi in the parks. I don't go to the parks as often as I would like (live in WA) but I've found my connection OK using lte. For this purpose, if they were to make the app functional and easy from the get go(not having to click on multiple things) I don't see the absolute need for wifi. And I truly see this useful for people with young kids who now have to push a stroller to splash mountain to get fast passes while their kids are impatiently waiting in said stoller to go on Alice in Wonderland. Oops did I say that out loud 😉

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  24. #23
    Quote Originally Posted by lweigel View Post
    OK maybe I don't know a lot about wifi and lte but why do we need wifi in the parks. I don't go to the parks as often as I would like (live in WA) but I've found my connection OK using lte. For this purpose, if they were to make the app functional and easy from the get go(not having to click on multiple things) I don't see the absolute need for wifi. And I truly see this useful for people with young kids who now have to push a stroller to splash mountain to get fast passes while their kids are impatiently waiting in said stoller to go on Alice in Wonderland. Oops did I say that out loud 

    Sent from my SM-T357T using Tapatalk
    LTE is fine for people who have unlimited data through their cell phone provider (raises hand) but not so fine for people who are constantly at/near their monthly data limits or who want to use a device that does not have built-in access to data (think ipods). Also, LTE reception is slow/spotty in places at DL/DCA.

    Finally, and less of an issue at DL than WDW, foreign guests may have with them phones that can connect to wifi for free but cost an arm and a leg to use internet, or only provide slow internet. [when we were at DL Paris, my cell phone carrier gave me free 2g but my parent's were limited to wifi only. If they did something like this there, I could have used it (slowly) but my parents would not have been able to without paying significantly more]

  25. #24

    Have a feeling the reason why the AP pricing side is not quite out yet is they don't think it will be big for Ap's.

    Have always felt that AP is kind of a Fastpass in the concept of: "Oh. Too packed... Will ride next time in the park's."


  26. #25
    I'm your huckleberry IdahoMike's Avatar
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    Mixed bag for me. On one hand I love the photopass option, much cheaper than it is now, or has been in the past. Even if I bought it every single day for a 5 day visit, that's still only 50 bucks total. I can remember buying the CD for $69 many years ago and that was a good deal then. We love character photos, even now with my kids getting older. On the other hand, there are 4 of us, and I'm not paying $40 extra PER DAY just for e-fastpasses. I have no problem walking to a kiosk with our passes like we have always done. At least if I am understanding it correctly that it would be per person, per day.


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