The Tech Transformation of Your Disney Vacation
It's Official: MagicBand+ Launching this Summer and ‘Hey Disney!’ Later this Year at Walt Disney World Resort
What can you do with all this new tech?
Use MagicBand+ to Bring Sculptures to Life
You can use MagicBand+ to bring the 50th Anniversary golden sculptures to life and interact with them on the “Disney Fab 50 Quest.” You can also get a deeper experience by using the Play Disney Parks app to keep track of which sculptures you’ve found. The more you find, the more features you can unlock with digital achievements and an augmented reality feature that will give you a glimpse into your favorite characters’ worlds.
Join the “Star Wars: Batuu Bounty Hunters” Experience with MagicBand+
In Galaxy’s Edge at Disney’s Hollywood Studios, MagicBand+ will allow you to join the “Star Wars: Batuu Bounty Hunters” experience, where you’ll use your band to find virtual bounties hidden throughout Black Spire Outpost. MagicBand+ will be your guide, vibrating and lighting up to show if you’re on the right path. Then, the augmented reality thermal viewer in the Play Disney Parks app will reveal what’s behind locked doors in Black Spire Outpost so you can uncover your virtual bounty**. Once your mission is complete, the local guild master will reward you with galactic credits. What do these credits do? We'll find out.
Experience Nighttime Spectaculars in a New Way with MagicBand+
MagicBand+ will also have a glow-with-the-show feature so you can experience nighttime shows in a new way on your wrist.
All of these experiences will be available when MagicBand+ goes on sale this summer. Disney World Resort hotel guests and Walt Disney World Annual Passholders will have the option to purchase bands at a discounted, pre-arrival price.
Existing MagicBands will still be available for purchase and will continue to work as it does currently.
MagicBand+ will be available at Disneyland Resort later this year. Some of the features will vary between Walt Disney World Resort and Disneyland Resort. More on that as the news comes in.
“Hey Disney!” is Coming to Walt Disney World
We now know that “Hey Disney!” is coming to Walt Disney World, but we still don't know exactly when.
According to Disney: "Hey Disney uses Alexa technology for supported Amazon Echo devices where you’ll be able to ask all the useful questions – weather forecasts, set timers and alarms, etc. – and get answers from more than 25 popular characters including Mickey Mouse, Olaf, Rocket and Groot, Princess Tiana and many more."
When you stay at select Disney Resort hotels, you can use “Hey Disney!” to learn helpful information about your vacation, order room amenities and more. Wondering when the next bus to EPCOT leaves or need to request more towels for your room? Just ask the Disney Magical Companion, a new character who will interact with you via “Hey Disney!”
‘Hey Disney!’ will begin rolling out the Mickey ears devices in select Disney Resort hotel guest rooms across Walt Disney World at some point in 2022 as part of the 50th anniversary celebration. Access will be offered as an optional, complimentary feature during your stay.
Yes, You Can Have Hey Disney at Home!
“Hey Disney!” will also be available for purchase for supported Amazon Echo devices via the Amazon Alexa Skills store, so you can bring the magic of Disney home with you. In the future, MagicBand+ will work with “Hey Disney!” by pairing with supported Amazon Echo devices to enhance some “Hey Disney!” experiences. More details will be released soon.
Note: To use the Play Disney Parks mobile app to enhance the MagicBand+ experience, guests must be logged into the Play Disney Parks app with the Disney account linked with their MagicBand+.
Guardians of the Galaxy: Cosmic Rewind is opening with virtual queue and individual Lightning Lane selection
When Guardians of the Galaxy: Cosmic Rewind opens in EPCOT on May 27, you will be able to access the through virtual queue and individual Lightning Lane. There will be no standby line-up option.
You will need to use the My Disney Experience app to join the virtual queue or buy an individual Lightning Lane spot. The virtual queue is limited to one use per day for Cosmic Rewind.
There are Some New Details about What's Behind those Walls at Epcot
World Celebration is the new hub area, divided into different gardens with a central planter based on the five-ring EPCOT logo. The area is filled with lots of seating and shaded areas in a lush, nature theme. Each of the gardens will have their own theme and they’ll change with the festivals throughout the year.
At night, when the lighting takes over, the gardens will immerse you in a special nighttime experience that will evolve through the seasons.
The garden areas surround CommuniCore Hall and CommuniCore Plaza, where EPCOT's international festivals will find a home base. CommuniCore Plaza will host musical performances of all sizes.
CommuniCore Hall will be a flexible exhibition and gallery space, offering a wide variety of experiences that highlight art, live music, food – complete with a demonstration kitchen. Next to CommuniCore Hall will be a new Mickey & Friends location where you can meet favorite Disney characters.
This new area, was inspired by the original EPCOT aesthetic that can be seen throughout the park’s transformation, including the timeless triangular geometry most prominently featured in Spaceship Earth. Even the CommuniCore name reaches back to the origins of EPCOT while also emphasizing the park’s central idea of community.
New Star Wars Experiences at Disneyland Resort
In Tomorrowland, Hyperspace Mountain is back for a limited time through July 4.
Captain Phasma and her Stormtroopers have returned for a limited time to patrol Tomorrowland, seeking out Resistance sympathizers and reinforcing the will of the First Order. Plus, watch out for new visitors walking the lands.
For a limited time, Tomorrowland showcases special photo spots including a replica of the palace throne from “The Book of Boba Fett.” You can also recreate the moment in season two of “The Mandalorian,” when Grogu connected with the Force at the ancient Jedi temple on Tython.
Throughout the May and June, new galactic food and drink can be found at Galactic Grill in Tomorrowland and throughout Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge.
Some of the new items will include:
Over at Disney's Hollywood Studios several New Star Wars Photo Ops are now available
The training droid Magic Shot is popular, plus Select Image Scanners in Batuu can offer you a lightsaber to use in the photo – including a replica of Mace Windu’s purple lightsaber that’s available after sunset across from Oga’s Cantina.
On the outer reaches of Batuu near Droid Depot, you might see Boba Fett’s ship overhead.
Thank You for Listening to the Disney Travel Podcast
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Thank you for listening and have a magical day!
Mike Belobradic and Amelia Belobradic
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