Magic Bands worth the $13 if staying off site?

Staying at the Dolphin, one of the things we miss out on are free Magic Bands. I know that they are only $13 each and it’s just a two of us, but we are still trying to decide if they are worth it or not.

Con - Can’t use as room key, or charge to room. Probably not going to be returning to reuse them in foreseeable future.

We aren’t planning on springing for the Memory Maker Photo package either.

Pros - Access to park and FP+ without keeping track of our ticket card. Relatively cheap souvenir.

Anything I’m missing?

Does anyone know if the Disney shop in the Dolphin sells them? We will be staying two days before our first park visit. If I can get them there without cutting into “park” time, that might make a difference. Too late to order them now, we are leaving in 12 days.

Personally I wouldn’t bother, especially as you don’t have memory maker. It’s never been any trouble to us to pull our tickets out when needed. I did like having the MB more than I expected, but I wouldn’t pay extra for it even if I did have memory maker (which I do as all UK tickets have it).

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I bought them on a trip last year, and found it to be worth it even though we stayed off site. To me it was worth not having to hassle pulling the tickets out as I did at Universal for entry into the park, and for swiping the FPP+. Though I would probably get a character one rather than the plain one, but that’s just me.

I’d say that if you are confident that you won’t see needing your hotel id for emh, and tickets for fastpasses, then I wouldn’t bother. We stayed at Swan, and bought them because of some of the reasons you mentioned:

  1. Cheap souvenir (we’ll probably make a wall hanging with a few photopass pics and our magic bands.)
  2. We ARE planning on going back within the time they should still be functional.
  3. We have a kid in tow
  4. I figured it would be MUCH less of a hassle with the kid especially. (actually, I used the kid as kind of an excuse - I figured it would be easier for me - I have a tendency to lose anything I possibly can.)

So with park access - for EMH, if you link your magic band - you won’t need your hotel id. Your magic band will have that info. Not a huge deal, but it is another “pro.” I mean, you’ll probably have your hotel id card on you no matter what. (I’m pretty sure it’s just the room key card.)

I have no regrets for buying mine, I think it was the right choice. It sounds like you think the right choice for you is to not buy them. You’ll be fine. Just have the tickets at the ready for park entrance, and also for fastpass entrance. Just take them out on your walk to the attraction. I just know that in my case, I’d probably have to search every pocket for ours, but that’s cuz I’m disorganized. Having them all on our wrist at the ready was worth the 13 each for us, but the other things did play into it - especially the going back to use them again thing. We’ll probably stay at Swolphin too. I thought the hotel was fantastic (and for the comparable amenities, worth every penny.)

Also, I’m pretty sure that one of the gift shops on the Swolphin property sells them. Just call the desk and make sure. I’m pretty sure that field that question every day. You can also order them online from a few places. I can guarantee the disneystore will ship them to you. We bought ours a few weeks before the trip and had them all linked and ready to go before we got there. We stopped at the disney desk and had them make sure everything was working.

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yes buy them! they are good for at least 2 years, you can use them again and again if you go back.

One more thing about buying them at the gift shop:

For some reason, my brain is tellng me to warn you that they MIGHT only have more expensive mb’s. I definitely cannot say is 100% accurate, so just be warned. I remember looking around the gift shop, and only seeing the more expensive versions of several things, like mouse ears, and a few other things. If you are interested in mb’s at the gift shop, call ahead and make sure. I’d specifically, ask if they had the 13.00 mb’s in stock. They might say, “sure, we sell mb’s” but when you show up, they only have the fancier, character ones. Just sayin’.

We were just there and they sell the regular bands everywhere that they sell the more expensive ones. We saw them in every park.

Dolphin gift shop?

Not sure on that one, sorry.

I stayed offsite and bought them. I have no regrets. It was much easier to do FP+ and accessing the park. We also ended up buying memory maker after seeing the photos.

It was worth it for me.

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We stayed offsite and used them. LOVED them. Tracked our FP, ADRs, had the ticket information…would buy them again.

You can’t track anything on a MB. You can use it to access your park ticket and FPs, but nothing to do with ADRs except use dining plan credits, which isn’t going to apply if you’re offsite. Whether you have a band or not, it’s MDE that has all the info.

OK. Semantics as I was excited.

For instance, it would have been smart for me to be wearing it when I pulled up to the Polynesian as the cast member at the security kiosk could have scanned it to track my ADR.

Point taken. Although you don’t need a MB for that, so again, I wouldn’t want anyone to think they couldn’t get into a resort for their ADR if they didn’t have one.

I just wanted to clarify as there will be people reading who have never had a MB and don’t really understand what they do. Judging by some questions I’ve seen asked here and on chat, I don’t think everyone who has had one understands what they do.

We stay at the Dolphin a lot (I love the Dolphin). 1st trip w grands, I chose not to buy MBs for 5 of us (about $70). I put them all in a lanyard that I wore. Only time we needed was to use for entry to fpp rides.

2nd trip w family, they decided to buy MBs for us all.

I still don’t think it’s that necessary- unless you’re using for hotel door, charging items or MM. But I understand the easiness for fpps, which would make the difference for some visitors.

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No, I didn’t NEED it but I feel that it WAS worth it.

That was the question and that was what I was trying to answer.

I’m not disagreeing with you. I was just clarifying that you don’t need a MB to do those things, as some people think that you do. Worth is completely subjective, so I think it’s important that people understand what functions they have and what they don’t have, so they can decide if it’s worth it to them. That’s all.

Hello everyone! Our trip was a success in no small part to everyone’s help! I’m going to go through my old threads and report my findings on some of the questions I asked in case anyone else is searching for similar answers. Hopefully you can learn from us!

We decided to not go with the Magic Bands after all. I quickly found that I could leave my “ticket” card in my wallet and still easily activate the FP+ stations just by holding my wallet in front of it. :slight_smile:

Although I admit I WAS tempted by the TRON magic band in the gift shop.

And they do indeed sell them in the Dolphin’s on site store. It’s tucked away in a corner on the Lobby level.

If you use FP and/or park hop, they are convenient, but not necessary. I have one and it was a fun way to get a cheap-ish souvenir. I’m not sure if they still sell them, but I also personalized it with little Monsters’ Inc pins (they had a variety of others) that attach the strap. The MB saves the hassle of digging out your pass all the time, though a lanyard would accomplish the same convenience.