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Disney World Goes Paperless with MagicBands

Kirsty Styles

Disney is introducing smart wristbands that work in conjunction with its new MyMagic+ app to improve the experience at its amusement parks, as well as helping the company collect rich, real-time data.

The MagicBands, fitted with RFID chips, will create a paperless environment within the park, acting as a wallet for FastPass queue jumping and event tickets, an entry pass and an optional credit card payment system. The mobile app holds the latest information for the park, as well as giving users the ability to update their bookings for rides and restaurants.

As well as staff using mobile handsets to ensure wristbands are not being misused, the developments will also enable the company, which welcomes 121.4m people every year, to make use of the data handed over to understand customer behaviour. The MagicBands can be encoded with visitors’ details, so if people opt-in, the employees can offer a more personalised service.

Tom Staggs, chairman of Walt Disney Parks and Resorts, made the announcement on the Disney blog after huge speculation from fans. “Over the past few years, we’ve devoted considerable time and resources to create a more immersive, more seamless and more personal experience for each and every guest who spends time with us. I know there’s been significant speculation about these efforts among our fans, so we’re pleased to give you a glimpse into the work we are doing to take the entire Disney guest experience to the next level.”

The system has already been tested in Florida and visitors here can start pre-ordering their bands.