Using tickets before package starts?

Sorry if this has been asked before…We are currently set to arrive December 13th, but if my two oldest daughters get done with their finals earlier (still no set in stone schedule for that) we may be able to arrive a day early. I will probably just book offsite for that first night, but was wondering if we could start using our magic bands (meaning tickets) before checking in, more specifically, on Dec. 12th? TIA

Most have reported being able to claim their package tickets up to two days early at guest services. The CM’s in the call center will tell you it is not possible and there are no guarantees, however, we’ve had lots of reports where this was done successfully.

I would just add that if you are already planning a park for that day, I can’t see any real benefit to staying offsite. If you are looking for cheap, it’s hard to beat a Disney value for amenities and atmosphere for the $.

Christmastime is high priced on site usually.

My package starts on 12/12 but decided to come down a day early. I got a discounted rate at POP through Orbitz. I don’t know if you tried that angle or not.

That’s a good tip. Thanks. I think if we do get to come down earlier, and if we stay at POP that night, they could extend my FD for that one day (12/12) right, as opposed to a room discount? (FD is a better value for us with all our peeps).

Where are you staying for the rest of your trip? If you are switching resorts, you would not qualify for free dining for that one extra day. The FD offer requires a 3 night minimum, I believe, and they would consider a stay at a different resort to be a completely separate reservation.

We are staying at POP the whole time, so we should be ok then?

I would call WDW reservations and check with them because they may be out of rooms for the FD days. It is my understanding that Orbitz and other resellers buy blocks of rooms and may have a room even when Disney says they are sold out.

yes, so long as a FD room is available for that night as @wk119 points out. But even if it’s not, staying at Pop is still going to be a way better deal than staying offsite and worrying about making your package tickets work. Go straight to Pop, check in early on the 12th, leave your bags, and get to the park! If the FD works out, that’s just a bonus, IMO.

Agreed! That’s what we are doing. Coming in one day earlier no FD but that’s ok.

Thanks all. DD just got her final exam schedule yesterday, and we definitely can’t get there until the 13th, so this is sadly no longer an issue (darn college kids, :wink: )